Chapter 21 – “My Irish Friend”

Dentistry and peeing your pants – true story?  Then we plunge ourselves into a frightening TRUE ACCOUNT of promises, ghosts, and the noises they make in the dark.   This week’s genre: Ghoooossst Stories!

Our tale “My Irish Friend” comes from the collection “Real Ghost Stories” by William T. Stead, a man with a somewhat controversial reputation and a writing style that can best be praised as “note-takingish.”  So grab a bottle of laudanum and curl up in your favorite bedchamber while we read you this week’s tale.

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Chapter 20: “Limbering Up Ebenezer”

The Winter Marblelympics are here and it is time to chant GO GO SAVAGE SPEEDERS! Oh, and there’s a story too, something about a miserly couple that has a falling out over pickles and the foxtrot.  This week’s genre: Romance then Not Romance.

“Limbering Up Ebenezer” is from the May 1919 edition of Saucy Stories Magazine and it is basically congealed jargon aggressively molded into two columns and three pages. So curl up in your favorite town hall bench and grab a drink of free tap water while we read you this week’s tale.

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Chapter 19 – “The Winds, the Birds, and the Telegraph Wires”

What is the acceptable age for owning a waterbed? Then, a succinct little fable about some kind of god named the “Earth King” – who may or may not have a Swedish nu-metal band backing him – and his travails hiring contractors.  This week’s genre: Fairy Tales.

“The Winds, the Birds, and the Telegraph Wires” is by Revered Jay T. Stocking, and it appears in an anthology entitled “Twenty Four Unusual Stories for Boys and Girls,” arranged and retold by Anna Cogswell Tyler.  It nicely explains why the winds hate the birds and the birds hate wires, but it does not explain how “Birds on a Wire” failed at the box office, so there’s still a lot of mystery left in the world.  So curl up in your favorite rainbow bed, and grab a rainbow popsicle and celebrate like it’s the Fourth of July, as we read you this week’s tale.

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Chapter 18: “The Devil’s Jest”

Weird fruits, part two – the paw paw.  After that, Alan reads a yarn of a dying man’s confession to a conveniently placed burglar.  This week’s genre: Suspense.

“The Devil’s Jest” by Robert Terry Shannon comes from the pages of Argosy All-Story Weekly, Dec 15th, 1923, and it concerns the revenge of a man who gets his medical advice from Dr Oz and definitely needs a subscription to the Times.  So curl up in your favorite hospice bed with a glistening revolver as we read you this week’s tale.

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Chapter 17: “Twixt Life and Death”

Weird fruits, part one: the Durian. Then a manx tale from the Isle of Man involving wholesale theft of seagull eggs!  Seriously, people are about to be put in jail over this. This week’s genre: Adventure/Mystery/Poetry.

“Twixt Life and Death” by Clucas Jouchin is from the 1905 anthology Fifty-Two Stories for Girls edited by Alfred H. Miles, and there is no doubt that this story is extremely appropriate for girls of all ages who dream of being a sleepwalker and really — really — don’t care for dogs.  So curl up on your favorite coat and grab a drink while we read you this week’s tale.

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Vol. 1, Chap. 16: “The Chemical Magnet”

Nude wookies! Then we take a lazy stroll on the scientific shores of a tale about a driven inventor and his plumbing issues, which is absolutely CENTRAL to the plot. This week’s genre: Super Science!

“The Chemical Magnet” is from the August 1927 edition of Amazing Stories magazine.  Curl up in your favorite ratty beach towel and grab a Bahama Manana Alabama Obama from your closest Margaritaville while we read you this week’s tale.

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Vol. 1, Chap. 15: “Skirts and Brats”

This episode, Alan escapes from a room through the power of blowing and Rob wonders why we’re reading a story about skirts and delicious, grilled Johnsonville brats. It’s all followed by a crime drama so baffling in its plot, dialogue, and crime that we think it technically qualifies as outsider art.

“Skirts and Brats” is a crime+morality tale from the September 3rd, 1918 edition of Adventure magazine.  Curl up in your favorite above-the-bar hideout and grab a potato masher while we read you this week’s tale.

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Vol. 1, Chap. 14: “Why Men Don’t Marry”

Alan is fined by the council for pique, and then we are toasted with a tale of scummy romantic misadventure amongst the backdrop of gorgeous Switzerland, home of waiters with outsized importance to stories.  Join us to learn about Lee Lee Sobieski’s poetry, and definitely NOT how to pronounce the word “shemagh.”

“Why Men Don’t Marry” from the book “Frivolous Cupid” by Anthony Hope, author of Prisoner of Zenda.  We totally spaced out on doing our Ronald Coleman impression in this episode, and we’re sorry for that, but you can recreate it by repeating the name “Ronald Coleman” over and over again and successively rolling the R more each time.  

Grab a drink of Kirsch and curl up in your favorite A-frame Swiss chalet, while we read you this week’s tale.

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Vol. 1, Chap. 13: “Two Weeks in August”

This episode, Rob finally lulls his toddler (and Alan) to sleep with the hypnotic power of European tractor stories and then we dive into the future of annoying coworkers and space tourism. Boy, if that isn’t a thrilling prospect for Fifties sci-fi hilarity, I don’t know what is!

Another science-fiction story from the glory days of yore, “Two Weeks in August” combines all the adventure of being forced into coworker conversations with looking in a phone book. Yep, seriously, that’s pretty much it. Plus pastrami sandwiches! Trust us, it all comes together as we read a highlight from the February, 1951 issue of Galaxy Science Fiction and sprinkle our usual jokes and nonsense about. 

It’s time to curl up in your favorite space fishing boat and grab your favorite drink as we read you this week’s tale.

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Vol. 1, Chap. 12: “Picture Bride”

We discuss the believability of lies and what grandmas do in their spare time (knitting, baking, plotting death upon their enemies, etc.). Then we regale you with a tale of unsocialized idiots tuning into mysterious women from the future with rheostats. Rheostati? Rheostatuses? Preposteruses!

As implied above, this week’s story is a whole bunch of Science Fiction hoo-ha in the vein of Twilight Zone or an episode of Black Mirror that’s 99% less about the bleak horrors of existence and inevitible crushing of the human experience by technology. It’s from Galaxy Science Fiction, June, 1955, so if you like two guys talking about dames and the scientific breakthroughs that will finally allow one of them to feel love than this is the story for you. Basically what we’re really getting at is that Ex Machina is a complete rip-off of this and someone owes someone else a lot of money.

So it’s time to curl up in your favorite laboratory with your girlfriend who lives in Canada or Europe or wherever and grab a drink while we read you this week’s tale.

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