There’s a tradition at our house: when the grandkids are visiting, we watch cartoons till it’s late outside. My brain was running out of steam, so I asked our oldest grandson for some writing inspiration.
“What should I write about tonight, Ollie?” I asked, looking for ideas.
“Berg Snerfles that live on Mars,” Ollie replied.
“Bird snergles?” I wondered aloud.
“Berg Snerfles,” Ollie retorted.
Once more, for verification, I asked, “Berg Snerfles??”
“Yes,” he said, “Berg Snerfles Who Live On Mars.”
“OK,” I replied, “I’ll see what I can do.”
So without any further ado, here goes…
Berg Snerfles Who Live On Mars
by Ken Hansen
Back in the day, which was the day before a few thousand days before today, on a Saturday, a large, pickle shaped meteorite fell to Earth with great screeching and flaming and smoke and kaboom. All the local folk saw it land in Clem Barfington’s corn field; and it seemed like just as soon as it hit the ground there was a crowd of curiosity seekers closing in to check it out.
Several minutes after the meteorite landed, there was still quite a bit of smoke floating up from the cornfield crater. However, the smoke was very strange… it was bright orange with green and purple stripes; and had a very unique odor. Cindy Tringletoes was pretty close to the site, and had been breathing some of this strange vapor as the crowd grew. Suddenly, her eyes opened really wide as she took a couple long, deep sniffs. Then her face kind of twisted sideways as she started speaking out of the left side of her mouth and said, “hmmm… smells like a combination of Zanga fruit and brope noodles!!”
After Cindy’s strange announcement, her Mom started to ask her what the HECK she was talking about; but was interrupted by a faint tapping noise coming from inside the meteorite. The tapping grew louder… louder… LOUDER and was quickly followed by a shrill noise as a part of the meteorite began to move. The movement continued and it quickly became apparent that some kind of door was opening out of the meteorite. The crowd gasped and stepped back quickly; and Steve Woofclank blurted out, “ummm folks?? This here ain’t no meteorite!!” Of course by this time the crowd was pretty aware they were witnessing something very strange.
The door opened completely and two strange beings climbed up from inside; and stepped out of what the crowd now knew to be some sort of space ship. A hush fell over the crowd as they stared in amazement. None of the townspeople had ever seen beings from outer space before; and the bright orange skin with green and purple stripes (very much like the strange smoke) fascinated them to the point that they all stood very still with their mouths open.
The beings sensed that the crowd was amazed, and maybe even a bit frightened by what they were seeing; so they quickly spoke through their cravnabs to introduce themselves. And yes, like every strange story about space beings, the visitors knew English…
“Hello Fellow Universe Beings!!” the first visitor said. “My name is Wognob, and this is my wife Bleeftok. We are Berg Snerfles from Mars, but I think we made a wrong turn near your moon. Hope we didn’t mess up your corn crop too badly when we landed.” After Wognob uttered his greeting, he turned to his wife and whispered, “oh my these strange beings are rather weird looking, aren’t they??” Bleeftok pinched Wognob’s cribnoot and whispered back, “the Creators made all beings in the Universe, we must not be rude to them even if we find them homely and smelling like Martian fish food.”
Then Bleeftok spoke up and said, “we need to get back to Mars soon because we’re missing the Celebration of Chiggles. But we’ll need some fuel and we hope you can help us.” Cindy Tringletoes, still very wide-eyed, walked up to them and asked, “I will help… what can I do?” “Well,” Wognob said abruptly, “we believe your Earth has just the fuel we need. We’ve been receiving your television signals for many years, and we are pretty sure that if we could get some of your Lucky Charms and a little milk that would help quite a bit.”
Very quickly, Bleeftok turned to Wognob with a puzzled look and asked, “how will that help our fuel situation??” Wognob’s face turned turquoise as he looked at the ground and said, “OK it won’t, but I’m hungry.” The crowd laughed, but Cindy and Steve took off and quickly returned with several boxes of cereal, some milk, bowls, and spoons. It wasn’t long before everyone was sitting down while munching on Lucky Charms and telling stories about their children and the upcoming Firefly Festival.
Bleeftok ate her share and stood up to thank everyone. “We very much appreciate your hospitality,” she said happily. “Now if we could just get a few hundred gallons of maple syrup and a pack of matches we can be on our way.” George Frocksnibble shouted from the back, “I have a load of syrup on the back of my pickup truck you can have!!” “That’s right neighborly of you, George,” said Bleeftok. So George backed his truck up near the space ship and Bleeftok jumped aboard and began slurping ALL the syrup out of the containers. Afterward, she got some matches from Brenda Shortsnout and pushed them into her left air sniffler.
Bleeftok’s head began to wiggle strangely as she ran back into the space ship. Suddenly, what sounded like a huge sneeze came thundering out of the belly of the ship; and very soon afterward the outside lights started flashing as a whirring noise seemed to signify that the spaceship was starting up. With a startled look, Wognob dropped his bowl of cereal and ran over to the door of the ship and shouted a few things to Bleeftok, who was still inside. With a few nods of his head, he turned to the crowd, smiled, and shouted, “sorry kids!! Gotta go!! Thanks for everything!!” Then he jumped inside and the hatch closed behind him.
The space ship shuddered a bit, then rose slowly as more orange smoke with green and purple stripes began to flow away from the landing site and over the crowd. Finally, there was a very large farting sound and the ship was gone. After getting a few sniffs of the weird smoke, the crowd all became very wide eyed and smiled broadly as they started reciting Martian poetry and did the Elbow Hooking Dance.
Wognob and Bleeftok were very grateful for all the help they received, and have been leaving messages of thanks on the insides of boxes of Lucky Charms ever since.
The End (…for now)
Tune in again some other time when another grandson requested story comes tumbling out of the Happy Friday keyboard!!