Tangor's Pun Challenge and a Bit More

John "Bridge" Martin


Originally appeared on erb-list 2008


Tangor said: Using the following as a model, I will award a "Tangor Club Topic Pass" to the winning entry—which can be used only ONCE... All submissions must be based on the Life or Works of Edgar Rice Burroughs. Example follows:


A thief in Paris wanted to steal some paintings from the Louvre Museum. After careful planning, he got past security, stole the paintings and made it safely to his van. However, he was captured only two blocks away when his van ran out of gas.

When asked how he could mastermind such a crime and then make such an obvious error, he replied, "Monsieur that is the reason I stole the paintings. I had no Monet to buy Degas to make the Van Gogh."

(See if you have De Gaulle to send this on to someone else. I sent it to you because I figured I had nothing Toulouse.)


Bridge asked: What IS a "Tangor Club Topic Pass"? Permission to post one message on any subject? Well, whatever it is, here's an entry:


We traveled for hours, through the Marsh and across the Heath, searching for the Holy Grell. The lure of the Grell was enough to set us sailing in our Schoonover the sea, with only Crandall  (He’s coxswain) Manning the wheel, guided by the Stahr,  with Powers from the boiler and cooking and light from our Coleman. The rest of us were land Lubbers. It was rough, with nothing to eat but Oldham, seasoned with Celardo. Frank about Frazetta’d his rear-end off, Fred was constantly Arting, and Dave kept leaning over the side to Hoover, while Mahlon was pointing fingers at everyone and playing the Blaine game.

The quest had begun with a map found in an artist’s studio in Vallejo, Calif., from where we traveled by Kraar to charter the ship. Now on the Isle of Kaluta we at last spotted the Temple of D’Achille.

The Chief Abbett, a direct descendant of St. John, came out of his Hoban, leaning on his Kane. "You must Neal before the Gollub," he intoned, but we Krenkeled at the thought. "O pShaw," said Barclay. We began to Jusko for battle positions.

Just then, we heard some Russelling in the nearby Reeds and a gorgeous girl stepped out. Jeff began Doten on her by Whelan and dealing. But she hauled out a knife, Studley’d with jewels, and cried, "We’ll Burne you on the altar if you dare touch the Grell."

Suddenly the Grell didn’t seem so important, so we Fostered an escape plan and Maxonized our opportunities to get away.


One March day in Houston, Elmo hopped in his Lincoln and drove a few Miles to the Kingston Fair. He walked past the cattle Barnes and the carnival Barker and the booth where they Pierce your navel, until he came to the cages, where he paid to look at the Pollar bear, the Wolf, the Hart and the rare French Crabbe, though he was careful not to get too Close.

As Crosby crooned on the Fair loudspeaker, Elmo saw Gordon, Andie was with Brenda. They all went to the Dunbar, where Elmo ordered a Jock Buster, Gordon asked for a Scott on the Brix, and Brenda said she'd just have a Miller's, but she was also hungry and thought she'd have a Lydie Denier.

Dempsey Tablered the bill and Elmo took out a fifty and Bennett and told him to keep any extra Mahoney.

Gordon and Brenda left to ride on the Merrill-go-round while Elmo went to the Maureen recruiter's booth and picked up some freebies.

He then hit the midway for a game of chance, successfully anagramming Enid's name as Dien, to win a free ride home in Casper's Van.


Note: A post by Korak inspired me to write a short story. Very short, but longer than a drabble. Sent it to the list but it never showed up. So, I'm rewriting it. This note is only in case some of you DID get it, and are wondering why I'm sending it again!! Bridge


Who Flipped the Peel?

The ship's steward stared in disgust at the splintered door to Olga de Coude's cabin, and then looked at the badly damaged banana peel in his hand. Yes, it was possible that someone had slipped on the peel and fell into the door, causing the cheap lumber to give way.

But who? he wondered. Who would be most likely to discard a banana peel in such a place. His thoughts went immediately to the wild man. True, he wore a suit and tie and even a cap, and attempted to exhibit the most meticulously polite mannerisms. But still, behind his back, everyone called him the wild man. There was something about him...the look in his eyes, the cat-like grace with which he moved. Or maybe it was because he was often seen munching a banana while sitting atop the ship's railing sans shoes and socks, his toes curled around the ironwork. Even in other places aboard the liner, the fellow was forever munching on bananas. Bananas on his breakfast cereal, a banana delight for dessert at luncheon, banana cream pie for dinner, a banana daquiri in the lounge, and in between meals, more bananas, bananas, bananas. The galley was nearly out of the pisangs! Yes, the wild man would be a prime suspect.

Further, it was no secret that he spent an inordinate amount of time in the company of the countess, and it was obvious that she was enamored of him. Could this be no accident? Could he have placed the peel in that locale with animal cunning, hoping the very thing would happen that did happen, thus opening the way to the inner sanctum of the de Coude's?

It would have to be considered in the inquiry. But... The steward's train of thought was interrupted by the sudden reek of a powerful cigar. He turned to see a disheveled looking, middle-aged American clad in a dirty brown overcoat.

"Excuse me," said the intruder. "Can I borrow your pencil? I seem to have lost mine. My wife told me to get something at the ship commissary and if I don't write it down in my notebook I'll forget it. Oh...it looks like you're investigating that broken door. Maybe I can help. I work for the Los Angeles Police Department."

"And you are..." said the steward.

"Lt. Columbo," he said.

Korak konsidered... Bridge, I bet she told the steward that she slipped on a banana peel and fell through the door. Or maybe she locked herself out of the room and, gentleman that Tarzan was, he just went ahead and busted it open for her, being an ignorant wildman.


Matt Goes with his Gut

A 100-word drabble by Bridge

"Mister Dillon! There's a stranger in town."

"Let's go, Chester."

As they went, a chilling yodel echoed and a man -- as tall as Dillon himself -- dropped from an awning, naked but for a loincloth.

"Mister, you're under arrest for indecent exposure," said Dillon.

"You will never put Tarzan behind iron bars," said the stranger.

Dillon noted his muscular build, the determined look in his gray eyes, and his hand flexing near the hilt of a large hunting knife. "In that case," he said, "let's be friends, and go into the Long Branch here and have a sip of jungle juice."


Tangor, a bit miffed that Bridge had all the fun with Phool Litrachoor over the last few months, sent this one back over the list to the Poet:


D'Arnot sighed as he waited at the police sergeant's desk. The paperwork had been alarming, the fine exorbitant, but was done. Soon his friend was delivered from the interior of the gaol.

His friend was impressive in height and masculinity, but seemed a bit disheveled and remorseful. "Sorry, Paul," the giant said. "Things got out of hand."

D'Arnot scowled. "You are LUCKY the girl did not press charges and all that had to be paid was damages. Never, NEVER, again do you go there! The bar maids are afraid of you now!"

With head hung low his friend replied. "What can I say, mon ami? Absinthe makes the heart grow fonder."


Bridge chuckled: Inspired by Tangor's Drabble, I shamelessly copy the premise, adding my own twist. Bridge


Dr. Jane pursed her lips as she examined the X-ray.

"Cigarettes, strong liquor, red meat, none of these do you any good, my dear patient."

"It's the code of the jungle," said Tarzan. "If I ate only wild berries and raw roots, I'd be laughed out of the predator's club."

"Take a look," Dr. Jane said. He saw only a negative image of his interior. It meant nothing to him.

"See this," said Dr. Jane, "It's your heart. I'm afraid it shows your heart is enlarged."

Tarzan just smiled at Dr. Jane. "Absinthe makes the heart grow, Fonda," he said.


Tarzan, By Definition
(this from 2009)

Tarzan! Tarzan! Tarzan!
He's a tree-hopping son-of-a-gun
He's a jolly good jungle fellow
And a bear of a man bar none.

He's a vine-swinging virtuoso,
The master of mangani land
He's the ace of aboreal airways
And the boss of the Waziri band.

He's a rip-snortin' lion lancer,
A challenger of champions,
A tenacious terrace traveler,
A limb-leapin' guardian.

He answers to the call of the wild,
A legend in his own time,
He's always eager for adventure,
There's reasons behind his rhyme.

He's a king and a lord and a chieftan,
A protector of his stompin' ground,
He's untamed, triumphant and terrible,
Invincible -- a man of renown.

He's a danged good ol' defender,
Comes on like a bolt from the blue,
Quicker than greasy lightning,
And cool as a cucumber, too.

He's a rootin'-tootin' roughneck,
A nonpareil without a peer,
A paladin without a parallel,
A conqueror without a fear.

On the veldt he's always the victor
In lost lands he often is found,
In the woods he is ever the warrior,
He's Tarzan, the ape-man, unbound.