Ban the Banjo
The life’s mission of Elliot Foglorne was to ban the banjo. Suffice it to say, he didn’t have a lot of wealth to throw after the endeavor. Nor did he even hate the sound of the instrument, its heritage, form, or anything about it at all. Still, most of his meager resources were devoted to that single-minded life goal. What’s more, to further fund his mission, he rarely ate.
Mr. Foglorne had already successfully had the banjo banned from the Dopplegangers ‘R Us Dot Com Memorial Yodeling and Meditation Park downtown, from all bowling alleys within the town limits (which nobody brought banjos to), town meetings and all political events (which everybody brought banjos to), and of course they were off limits within the pathetic limits of his corner lot yard.
No grass grew there, though the surrounding lawns of the neighbors, all who strangely resembled Yanni (both the men and the women), were lush, eighth-acre havens. Birds also refused to nest in his yard, and rumor has it from a local soil scientist that strangely, there were no worms whatsoever on his property.
Elli was a man who didn’t care to think at all what was in his food. If you gave him a trash bag, he’d probably eat it.
Fortune finally winked seductively at Elliot Foglorne, sending a financial backer and savior in the form of a man named Earl “Scarf Breath” Rothschild. Señor Scarf Breath wasn’t from the rich, weird family of unnecessarily rich Rothschildren, but rather from a goofy part of Missouri.
Rothschild was smoking three tobacco pipes simultaneously (probably to prove his stature), and as he spoke, the pipes’ interference with his drowsy southern drawl ensured his words were completely unidentifiable as any language anywhere in the world, even Esperanto. It wouldn’t even be possible to transcribe what he spoke.
The billows of smoke and inane financial babble were cut short by the raucous arrival, upon a snowmobile made completely of ice, of Jennivive Portmouth-Plink, heiress to a fortune from myriad of sources and curator of Esperanto.
“You’ve used Esperanto for the last time, Foglor — er — Rothschild.” Actually, it was the first time. Jennivive was always looking for an enemy, even where none was to be found. This time was no exception, she had Earl-Roth square in her sights.
The super-soaker-like device she wielded fiendishly well made a quick job of Rothschild. Indeed he was squarely in her sights. The weapon was filled with the tears of a giraffe that had died some time back, mourning a long-lost lover.
Obviously ol’ Scarf Breath had zero resistance to really sad giraffe tears, and began the slow and painful process of transformation. Into what had yet to be revealed to him.
Stupid zinging noises, coupled with annoying background music and over-the-top sparkles and fizzy-whirly-zippy things flying everywhere meant Earl Rothschild’s transformation was nearly complete.
Involuntarily, he said the Gettysburg Address in Esperanto, surely guided by the prying mind of Jennie Porthmouth-Plink, and then melted into a puddle of generic store-brand alphabet soup. The soup, of course, only spelled words in Esperanto.