Curing the Vicar’s Conniptions (‘Oy, Rodney’)

Ms. Crepuscular's Estonian Folk Tale ('Oy, Rodney') – Lee Duigon

At last! Chapter CDXLVIII of Violet Crepuscular’s epic romance, Oy, Rodney, in which she reveals the funniest book ever written–here it is, calloo, callay, o frabjous day!

Ms. Crepuscular suspends the action so she can tell the reader, “This took an extraordinary among of research! At length it narrowed down to a choice between two books, both published in 1858: A Brief Narrative of My Captivity Among Dubious Presbyterians, or A Lady’s Bad Time and the much more famous work by the man known only as “Pumpkinhead,” Mopey Dick, or The Depressed White Whale. One of these, if read to the vicar, will cure his conniptions. The other will make them worse–much worse! Which one is right? Which one is the funniest book in the world?”

Her solution to the problem is simplicity itself. Resorting to the nearby Home For Persons With Conniptions, Ms. Crepuscular reads to the patients. Before anyone gets better or worse, the authorities drag her back outside by the ankles.

With even more simplicity, she flips a coin. Mopey Dick, all 962 pages of it, is to be read to the vicar. If it doesn’t work, he’s liable to scream, leap out of his bed and through the open window, and run around in his nightshirt until he’s sucked under the wading pool.

“It’s going to take a while to read this,” Violet crepusculates to her readers, “so tune in next week to see what happens! Heh-heh, they don’t call me The Mistress of Suspense for nothing!”

[Editor’s Note: I have read several chapters of Mopey Dick and I don’t think it’s funny at all. And Dubious Presbyterians is equally devoid of humor. A six-year-old telling Irish jokes would be more chuckle-inducing than these brainless tomes.]

3 comments on “Curing the Vicar’s Conniptions (‘Oy, Rodney’)

  1. A bit off-topic but not entirely … Richard Armour, in “The Classics Reclassified,” points out that the title character in “Moby-Dick” doesn’t show up until chapter 103. Do you suppose Herman Melville was an ancestor of Violet Crepuscular?

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