Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Purple (11/05/09)
TITLE: Life Among the Non-Purples
By Jan Ackerson
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Gunderson: Good afternoon! Today we’re clearing up misconceptions about being purple in a non-purple world. My panel includes a purple cow—I’m sorry, ma’am, but do you have a given name?
Cow: This is the problem in a nutshell. I’m perhaps the most famous cow in the world, and you don’t even know my name! It’s Angelica. Are you surprised?
Gunderson: We’ll get back to that, Angelica. In the meantime, let’s greet our next panelist, the Purple People Eater.
PPE: I object to that. I never ate nobody.
Gunderson: Hold that thought…let me introduce our final purple panelist, Count von Count. How are you, Count?
Gunderson: Beg pardon?
Count: Five! That’s five ‘purples’! Muahahahaha!
Gunderson: Uh, thanks, Count. Okay, let’s start our discussion with the purple c…I mean, with Angelica.
Count: Six! Six purples! Muahahahaha!
Gunderson: Right, Count. Angelica, a famous poem was written about you. How has that affected you?
Cow: It’s a patently ridiculous poem. I’ve never seen a purple cow, I never hope to see one…Why wouldn’t someone want to see a purple cow? I should think they’d be delighted.
PPE: I sure am. Man, you’re one crazy-lookin’ cow. That’s some kinda purple.
Gunderson: Angelica, I understand you object to the last part of the poem.
Cow: Yes, Drew, I do. But I can tell you anyhow, I’d rather see than be one. First of all, I find anyhow to be rather informal vernacular. But even more compelling is the absurdity of the thesis that the poet would rather see a purple cow than be one. That’s demeaning to my very existence.
PPE: I hear ya’, sister. I been demeaned, too. All because of that song.
Gunderson: You’re talking about Sheb Wooley’s song, sir? “Purple People Eater?”
Count: Eleven! Muahahahaha!
PPE: (looking at the Count) Don’t take much to make you happy, does it? Yeah, I’m talkin’ ‘bout that song. First of all, I’ve got two eyes, always did. And the one horn business is just bunk.
Gunderson: Let me just stop you for a moment. What exactly are you?
PPE: Well, let’s just say I’m (lowering his voice) not from around here.
Cow: Indubitably not!
PPE: Look who’s talkin’, a purple cow.
PPE: Like I was sayin’—that horn was just like…a big zit, you might say.
Gunderson: And the flying? Can you fly, sir?
PPE: I’m takin’ the fifth on that. But I never ate no people, that’s what I come to say. Oh, sure, I took a little nibble when I first got here from…well, from where I’m from. But man, that was some kinda funky. Never again.
Gunderson: What about that song, then?
PPE: Well, the guy I nibbled on may or may not have been Sheb Wooley. And he exaggerated. Poetic license, I think they call it.
Cow: Everyone thinks they’re a poet. I submit to you that a true poet would come up with a poem that rhymes purple. That would be a real accomplishment, worthy of the word ‘poet’. I tell you, it’s a much maligned color.
Gunderson: Count von Count—You live on Sesame Street, where people and…ummmm, others come in all sorts of colors, but there aren’t many there who are purple. What’s it like, being purple in a largely unpurple world?
Count: Sixteen! Sixteen perfect purples! Muahahahaha!
Gunderson: Kind of a Johnny one-note, aren’t you? Anything else to add to our discussion?
Count: When you pat baby’s back, she will burple
And a soda might cause you to slurple
But there’s nothing so nice
(And no hue will suffice)
As a Count in a pale shade of purple!
Seventeen purples! Muahahahaha!
Gunderson: Wait…was that a poem rhyming (stopping himself) that word?
PPE: Sounded like it to me.
Cow: I think not! It was a cheap trick, with vulgar coined words that don’t actually exist.
PPE: Chill, ya’ big bovine. I don’t eat no people, but a nice juicy hamburger sounds good about now. I’m just sayin’.
Gunderson: (hastily) And our time is up. Stay tuned next week, when we talk to some Oompa-Loompas about being orange. Count, I’m going to let you have the last word on being purple.
Count: Eighteen! Muahahahaha…
Fade to black.
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