Tag Archives: Ernie

#82. Shacks from Space, Part Two: The Observatory

By: Curtis Murphy

I was floating. Floating through a field of stars thicker than almond milk. It was like some kind of lactose-free Milky Way, and I was like a long-lost bowl of cereal trying to find my way home. NO!! I shouted to myself. It was Ernie who was lost, and I was out here trying to find him. This was no time for cereal talk. It was serious business. Or was it cereal business? Had this whole trip just been an excuse to try and export my new jalapeno-flavoured corn flakes to the Gamma Quadrant? I wasn’t sure. I wasn’t sure of anything anymore. I saw Ernie’s head float toward me, going “crunch, crunch” like the sound of an exploding nebula.

Zap! I woke up in a ditch, cold, wet and thirsty. My mouth was on fire, which I suppose is what you get when you walk for 3 days straight eating nothing but jalapeno-flavoured corn flakes. Maybe Ernie had been right when he said we should have gone with dill pickle flavour. But this was no time for cereal talk. Or was it?

Zap! I woke up in a ditch again, but this time it was a real ditch, instead of that fake ditch from the lucid dream workshop at last year’s CUC ACM.

Then there was a VERY LONG PAUSE as the author considered ending the story right here…

Zap! Zap! Zap! The familiar sound of thunder-flies punctuated the night so now I knew I was really awake. I also knew it by the pain in my webbed feet, which were not built for long-distance trundling. And I had come a long way. I was now 100 miles West of West Hoglet, 30 cubits North of North Hamlet, and a few centimetres East of East Niblet, home of the world’s largest solar-powered laundromat.

That left only one direction to go. I walked South, toward that mysterious dome like structure at the top of the nearby hill. I used the last of my strength to knock on the door. I almost fainted when a voice came from the other side, saying, “Barn Bird, we’ve been waiting for you.”


#81. Shacks from Space, Part One: Cornfields of Despair

By: Curtis Murphy

I was wandering through the night. I was a long, tall corner-cob, dribbling kernels like recycled paint. My hands were wobbling, like pieces of meat on giant sticks called wrists. Yes, I was shaking. I had the tremors they used to call “shackalitis,” the syndrome you get from going into withdrawal from high-speed shack racing. Shack racing had been banned in our neighbourhood since 1978, ever since Ernie went over a cliff and blasted off into space, singing “Somewhere over the Rainbow” at the top of his lungs as he crossed the warp speed barrier. Scientists say that if you stick a telescope in your ear on a quiet, starry night, you can still hear him singing. I myself was on my way to science-land, crossing the cornfields of despair which prickled my webbed feet as I hoped gingerly along. I was going to become a scientist, the first ever duck-billed, corn-based scientist from West Hoglet. I was going to search for Ernie, and bring him back home.