funny humor column mcawesome

Math is a four-letter word

Part 5, War on the Floor III

by Dave McAwesome

"Five," Chirpy answered.

"Wrong! Oh, no, wait, that's absolutely right. Okay, M.U.S.C.L.E.s are at your service."

"Wait, what? That's it?"

Peeps Muscles M.U.S.C.L.E.
Leader of the M.U.S.C.L.E.s greets Chirpy.

"Yes." A small, peach-colored figure exited the shoebox to greet Chirpy. His voice sounded like both the loud, deep voice and the less loud and deep voice earlier. "I'm the leader of the M.U.S.C.L.E.s, but you can call me by my name, 'Leader of the M.U.S.C.L.E.s.' My army is at your disposal."

"Two plus 3? That's the deadly question?"

"Officially speaking, Chirpy, the name of our race is the Millions of Unusually Small Creatures Lurking Everywhere Who Are Also Not Very Good at Math, so simple arithmetic is pretty astounding to us. We normally shorten the name of our species because (1) M.U.S.C.L.E. is a better acronym than M.U.S.C.L.E.W.A.A.N.V.G.M. and (7) we don't want to advertise our shortcomings."

"Er, you mean (2)," Chirpy corrected.

"Hm? Oh, right. See, this whole numbers thing is foreign. I guess that's why we live in a shoebox instead of a better engineered structure. Calculus gives us seizures."

Chirpy led the M.U.S.C.L.E.s back to Peep Village. The scene was grim. Marshmallow guts were everywhere. The Sugar Bunny's dragon sat on a mound of dead Peeps in the middle of town. Sugar Bunnies were entrenched on the outskirts of the village, keeping the remnants of the Peep armies from mounting a concentrated charge.

dragon in town village

Chirpy nodded at 'Leader of the M.U.S.C.L.E.s.' He nodded back.

"Attention, MUSCLEs. Front and center 'Guy with un-removable sunglasses and chainsaws on arms and shoulders' and 'Guy with horns but no mouth.' I have a job for you."


"Recognized, 'Guy with horns but no mouth.' Although being a guy with no mouth, your query will raise more than a few biological questions."

"I hate to bring this up outside of our usual campfire meetings, but I don't understand why we haven't come up with a naming convention for ourselves. This idea that we refer to each other by describing characteristics is not working. I refer to this guy as 'Guy with un-removable sunglasses and chainsaws on arms and shoulders.' But some of you, like 'Hand for a body instead of just a hand,' call him a different name: 'Guy with surly attitude who doesn't tip well at the bar.' We've had entire conversations where we thought we were talking about two different people when all along we were both gossiping about 'Guy with un-removable sunglasses and chainsaws on arms and shoulders.' What's wrong with, say, 'Steve'?"

muscles millions of unusually small creatures lurking everywhere
Several M.U.S.C.L.E.s discuss the ontological problems of naming and reference.

"Nobody better call me Steve, or I shit you not, I will blow a fucking gasket," said 'Guy with surly attitude who doesn't tip well at the bar.'

"It's a fair point," said 'Leader of the M.U.S.C.L.E.s' turning to 'Guy with horns but no mouth.' "One I'm sure you'll argue after you take 'Nobody better call me Steve' to eliminate the Bunny's forward machine gun nest."

"We've got to take out that dragon, first, or your soldiers won't be able to get to the Sugar Bunnies," Chirpy squawked.

"True." He turned to a squad of MUSCLEs. "It's time for our Pile On tactic. Pile on the thing in the center of town."

They charged fearlessly. Dodging bullets from Bunny snipers, they stormed past wrecked buildings and rubble. One by one they leapt into the air, piling on the water fountain in the center of Peep Village.

"No, not that! Squad Beta, pile on the other thing in the center of town...with pointy things sticking out of it and sitting on a mound of stuff!"

The second squad dashed into the fray and tackled a helpless shrub (it was planted on a mound of dirt and mulch, which, being under the shrub, were also thoroughly tackled).

"No! Gads! Okay, I'm enacting the suggestion from 'Guy with horns and no mouth who asks too many questions.' That other thing there in the center of town with the wings and dead Peeps is now named 'Pete.' Pile on Pete!"

All the MUSCLEs rushed forward and piled on Pete, killing her.

muscles millions of unusually small creatures lurking everywhere

"Now for the Sugar Bunnies," said Chirpy, picking up an assault rifle. The scattered Peep armies followed her and overwhelmed the Sugar Bunnies. A few escaped, but the Peeps were too battered to pursue.

peep with assault rifle

Beak Featherbottom, General Longtail, Pink Pussyfoot, Warbler Bluebelly and Lurchmont Smallbrain gathered around Chirpy.

"Chirpy," Beak stepped forward, "I think I speak for all of us when I say that we are one-dimensional characters who were never fleshed out in any substantive way. In that vein, we all have deep appreciation and admiration for what you did…or at least as much as our paper thin development will allow. I, for one, would STILL like to watch Rush Hour 2 with you no matter if you call yourself Chirpy Orangebreast or Linda Ronstadt."

"Thanks, undeveloped boyfriend. That means a lot to me...not as much as if we had a real emotional connection, but still. And I'm going to remain Chirpy Orangebreast. I don't need a human name to show my mettle. I proved my worth when I fulfilled the central obstacle of my life-changing hero's quest by answering the MUSCLEs' deadly question: What is 2 plus 3."

"Harf?" harfed Lurchmont.

"Oh dear," Longtail shook his head. "That wasn't very difficult at all, was it? I should have sent Pink Pussyfoot all along. She might not have taken that shrapnel wound to the face. Hmph, poor thing."

muscles millions of unusually small creatures lurking everywhere
Left: Pink Pussyfoot's shrapnel wound initiated a fit of vomiting. Black, tar-like vomit it was. What the hell kind of diet was she on? Right: Chirpy and Beak engage in a little Peep 69 after watching Rush Hour 2.

Meanwhile, on the way back to Sugar Bunny City...

Skip: I'll tell ya, Puffy. That didn't work out too well.
Puffy: *Gurgle.*

the sugar bunny menace bloody rabbits

Skip: I'm not discouraged, though. Do you remember when King Zarkon and Prince Lotor's Robeast would be so close to defeating Voltron? Then in the last minute, Voltron eeks out a victory.
Puffy: *Drip.*
Skip: Zarkon and Lotor were so close to winning. They should've made two or three of the same Robeast and tried again the next week, but nooooooooo. Instead of going for the kill, they try something different that also inevitably fails in the last 90 seconds.
Puffy: *Harp music.*
Skip: We're not going to make the same mistake, Puffy. We've got two eggs in the hopper. Once they hatch, we'll rain twice the devastation on Peep Village.
Puffy: *Splllllptll.*
Skip: Say, can I have your Mickey Mantle rookie card?
Puffy: *Tpthlthl.*
Skip: And your wife?
Long pause, as the last drop of blood in Puffy's skull hits the floor.
Skip: Thanks, buddy.

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