Princess Pricklepants and the Mystery in the Hundred Acre Woods


Hello again dear readers,

While there hasn’t been nearly a long enough delay, here we are with another post.  Like many others, it’s going in a slightly different direction.  If there are three phrases that describe us, they are “somewhat inconsistent,” and “not great at counting.”

A reader, Quentin, wrote in to mention that they did not believe the art works we had been posting recently were real art.  We can only say that art is the thing artists make, and we aren’t in any position to judge besides that since we’re not artists.

No readers wrote in to ask about their homework though many visited searching for answers to Princess Penelope’s Figurative Language homework, which we hope we were able to help with in our small way.

One person also arrived here searching for “can a hedgehog die by being too loud,” to which the answer is that hedgehogs do not like loud noises at all, it would cause them chronic stress, and they definitely shouldn’t be kept in loud environments.  Even if they don’t die, it’s cruel to expose them to loud noises. Don’t do that.

We’ve promised to move on from Hedgehog Art Through History series, as it was time for a proper story, so that’s what we’ll do.  Pretty soon.  Since we aren’t going to do a post on art, we wanted to share this remarkable illustration of a squirrel drinking coffee from a crazy straw from a rejected Alice in Wonderland story to make sure we’re not foolishly consistent.  This also give us the opportunity to subtly plug the new shirt with this design. Sorry.alice_squirrel_colorAnd so, as we always try to do, we begin our story with a picture with words under it.

pp_pooh
Once upon a time, a very long time ago now, around last Friday, Princess Pricklepants was taking a lovely stroll in the garden.  Through a bit of digging, a few extra left turns, and perhaps not quite the right number of right turns, she wound up in a very unfamiliar place.  The colors were so very wrong that they weren’t even there, and everything smelled strangely, almost like paper.  She decided to pause, close her eyes and take in a nice deep sniff to see if she could smell the right direction to go.  In mid-sniff she heard a small squeaky voice.

“What is it Pooh?”

“Oh, I think it’s a Pricklebump.”

Her Highness was not a Pricklebump, but for the time being chose to let it pass as there were greater concerns, “Oh, hello, I’m afraid I’ve become so very lost I can’t even find my name to properly introduce myself.  So very sorry.”

“Well, hello whoever you are, I’m Piglet,” said Piglet.

“And I’m Pooh,” said Pooh bear, “Could we help you find your way?”

“I’d really be grateful, though there’s something else I’m missing I’m more worried about, but I’m not exactly sure what it is.”

Piglet was very worried, “Oh no!”

oooh

“Don’t worry,” said Pooh, “We can take you to Owl.  If anyone knows anything about something, it’s Owl who knows something or other.  Or maybe the other way.”

Piglet seemed slightly relieved, though not very much so.  “I s-s-suppose it’s not s-s-so bad, then. An adventure with Pooh and the Primpole will have t-t-to t-t-turn out.  I g-g-guess, unless there are W-W0ozles.”

He Highness decided the polite thing to do would be to just let the piglet with an anxiety disorder use an incorrect name since she didn’t have a proper name to offer.  These monochrome animals certainly did have a lot of odd pronunciations, and very strange habits with capitalization as well.

Her Highness wasn’t fully sure about the plan. “So, this Owl, does it eat rodents?  What about hedgehogs?”

Pooh giggled, “Oh no, Owl doesn’t eat.”

Her Highness was relieved, so they set on their way.  As they walked Pooh hummed a tuneless little melody which turned into a song about bees and honey and things.

Her Highness decided to make an attempt at conversation.  “You know, you’re a very unusual bear.” Her Highness was used to bears with Canadian accents who didn’t hum and sing about bees.

“Well, you’re rather unlike any, um, Prickly Animals I’ve met either.  Delighted to meet you.”

“Delighted to meet you too.”

They arrived at Owl’s home in a lovely old tree which was drawn really nicely.

Pooh said, “Now all you have to do is walk to the door and ring the bell, since a knock means you’re there to eat honey.  Or maybe it’s the other way.  I never remember.  Still, maybe you should knock, I could use a little Smackerel of something.”

pp_owlHer Highness wasn’t fully comfortable with this arrangement, but happily it didn’t matter, as Owl was already outside, hopefully not in the mood for eating any hedgehogs.

“Why it’s a Periwinkle,” exclaimed Owl, with his huge deadly talons gripping the branch.

Her Highness was working diligently not to lose patience with these creatures and their habit of calling everything the wrong name with strange capitalization, but knew better than to offer a correction to a rodent and hedgehog eating predator, as this wouldn’t be polite.

“Why hello Owl, it’s very lovely to meet you. I’m afraid I’ve become very lost, so lost I can’t find my name.  I met a bear named Ooh who suggested you might be able to help.”

“I’ve never met a bear named ‘Ooh.’ Very strange. Well, this thing you’ve lost, can you describe it?”

“It’s, well, you see, it’s difficult to describe.”

“Well, when you lose something, the customary procedure is to go back to the first place you saw it, then go to every other place you’ve ever seen it and eventually it’ll be in one of those places.”

This was helpful advice in a sense of trying to help, but also unhelpful in the sense of not being practical for someone who’s lost, or even for someone who wasn’t lost.

“Well thank you, I’ll toddle off and see about going to many places.  Oh, also, the bear wanted honey.”

“Oh, I’m afraid I’m all out due to a recent bear visit.  You’ll need to try a bee hive to find honey, maybe you could use a balloon to get some?”

“I’ve always had very bad experiences with balloons I’m afraid, but thank you. Very lovely visiting you, good bye.”  She hurriedly made her way from the large-taloned raptor.

pp_balloon2

As she scurried politely, she remember back to her last balloon adventure.  It had all started off so nicely, with a lovely balloon and no bees at all.

pp-balloon

Then several seconds later there was a terrible sound, just the kind of loud sound she liked least in the world, really, and after the sound her former balloon wasn’t very lovely any more. No, there would be no balloons.

When she got back to Pooh and Piglet she carefully forgot to mention the balloon, bee, honey idea, but related the rest of the advice which they chose to ignore.  Not being sure what to do, they decided to walk about to see if the right idea might visit, though all the ideas that came to visit were never quite right.

As they walked, they eventually came upon a morose donkey despondently looking at its feet.

piglet-eeyore-3

“Good afternoon, Eeyore” said Pooh.

“Oh, Good afternoon, Pooh, Piglet, hedgehog,” said Eeyore gloomily. “If it is a good afternoon,” he said. “Which I doubt,” said he. “It’s probably going to rain.”

“We seem to have a very confuddling problem, you see, this Pricklebump has lost a Thing, but she’s not sure what it is.”

“Oh, well.  Probably will never find it.  All the same, it’s better to lose Something and not know what it is, than to know what it is.  Then you can forget it, and go somewhere else to be Alone and Forgotten sitting in the Rain. Like me.”

“You’re not alone, dear Eeyore, since we’re actually here, silly.  Also it’s not raining.” said Her Highness, who was still quietly losing her mind at their capitalization habits.

“Oh, well it might not be Raining now, but one day it will. This Thing you’re looking for, what does it look like?”

“Oh, if I could draw it, I’d remember it for sure.  I went with Ooh Bear to see Owl, but they didn’t exactly help, and I’m quite erplexed, and at a loss for what to do.”

“Hmm,” said Eeyore.

piglet-eeyore-p

“Does it perhaps look like the letter you keep forgetting to use?”  Eeyore made a P on the ground with some sticks.

“That’s it,” exclaimed Princess, “You’ve found it!  You’re positively perfect!”

With the letter P found, Princess Pricklepants was at last able to mention her name, which was a relief, as the pressure of being powerless to proffer polite greetings was perturbing. Pooh led the way to Christopher Robin who it turned out followed her on Twitter (Facebook being for old people), and so was able to help her find her way home, and all was well in the world again, wrapped up remarkably quickly since there was a 1,000 word limit which we actually passed a surprisingly long time ago.

So we must say, “The End” for a post that was mostly an excuse to show off some line drawings we’ve been working on as a trick to continue with Hedgehog Art Through History even when we weren’t supposed to.

Stay tuned for our next episode: Princess Pricklepants and the Mystery of Monkey Voters (working title)

 

 

 

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Princess Pricklepants and the Perils of Pirate Plunder: The Island of Mystery, Except Really This Time


Dear reader,

Happily, we’re really on a roll with getting back into the swing of infrequent posts, but as is our way, we have a few items to go over that are significant in some way.

We were thinking of mentioning the search for “comfortably annoyed” that brought some person with very mysterious emotions to our humble blog, and also mention the sudden onslaught of people searching for “imlovlinlit princess penelope answer key” (looks like school’s back in session), but then thought better of it, so we won’t mention those.

For our semi-first item of note, we wanted to mention that Quentin emailed in asking about where to find the imlovlinlit princess penelope answer key, though Quentin really wanted to know about when our next post was.  It’s now,Quentin.  We hope you’re comfortably annoyed.

For our very first item of note, for those souls who stumble on this, here are the previous roughly four-ish episodes:

For our ultimate first item of note, the observant reader might have noticed that we titled ourselves into a bit of a corner, so we’re just doing what we can with this title, and apologize to any titular purists who might be comfortably annoyed with our choices in this domain.

And with that brief preamble, on to our first picture with words under it.

tisland (1)

They arrived at the island.  There, they saw a few birds, which wasn’t really what they’d been expecting, helping the island to live up to its name.  It looked oddly familiar somehow.

Boris was agitated, “Maybe we should have a meeting instead of debarking? Did I mention I have a chronic fear of birds that aren’t chickens?  Chickens, cool.  Owls, ducks, the kind of things.  Terror.  In nature, bears and birds are natural enemies.  You should see the things those terrible sparrows say.”

Princess assured him “We’ll protect you from the scary birds and their scary bird words.”

Boris pouted.

The birds suddenly flew off, except the chickens.

“There we go, problem solved.”

Boris was still apprehensive, “Well, maybe we should have a meeting about this meeting, and then a post-mortem meeting to go over the meeting?  Perhaps a planning meeting for the post-mortem…”

“Now is the time to act,” said Princess with gravitas.

“How about if our action is to call for a delay. Let’s discuss how this meeting is going. I think it’s a bit too brief.”

“Now is the time to act in a way that isn’t calling for a delay or discussing the meeting.  It’s time to debark,” said Princess with gravitas.

They debarked with some trepidation onto the Island of Mystery.

Debarking

After they debarked, a mysterious figure appeared with a puff of smoke and a flash (not pictured).  The figure took a dramatic pose.

Mathematician

“Greetings, o strangers recently debarked from a boat from a far off land, I am Marvin the Marvelous Magical Mathematician.  What is your name?”

[Author’s note: dear readers, you may have noticed the use of the term “debark” cropping up more than might have been expected in normal usage.  We apologize for the over-use of the term debark and will attempt to reduce our use of the term now that they’ve debarked.  We just really like the word debark.]

“Hello, I am Princess Penelope Pricklepants, Grand Duchess of Tiggy-Winkle, Defender of Hufflepuff, Empress of Quillonia, and Dominions beyond the Seas.”

“Greetings Princess Penelope Pricklepants, etc. What is your quest?”

“To find the Gem of Destiny hidden by Captain Quillbeard.”

“Wonderful!  We have puzzles and riddles, conundrums, enigmas, and oh so very many brain teasers here.  If you can answer me these questions three, you will solve the mystery, and gain the final clue to finding to the Gem of Destiny.  Our questions are wonderful brain teasers – mathematical word problems, riddles, logic puzzles, that kind of thing.”

There was a soft groaning that came from the adventurers.

Boris said, “My brain really prefers to not be teased.  Also the meter on that little rhyme was terrible.”

“Well I’m not a poet, I’m a Marvelous Magical Mathematician. Now, you might have noticed these two chickens.  One always lies, the other always tells the truth.”

There was groaning of a less soft variety that came from the adventurers.

“Now, nobody on our island knows the color of their eyes.”

There were comfortably annoyed murmurs emerging from several of the adventurers.

“Also, one of the chicken’s last names has a Z in it, and at least one has a B in it, and one has no vowels.”

There were angry grumblings emerging from several of the adventurers.

“Now here is your first puzzle.”

Boris blurted out, “Did I mention I have a chronic allergy to mathematicians and logic?  I am suddenly feeling my ailment coming on. I think I need to just go off somewhere that’s not here to convalesce.”  He left.

Marvin continued, “You are a chicken farmer going to a market on the other side of a river.  You have one chicken, one bag of seed, and one fox. If left alone, the fox will eat the chicken, and the chicken will eat the seed. You have a boat that holds you and one passenger and must cross a river.  How do you get across and on to the market taking passengers across one at a time without the seed or chicken being eaten?”

Princess answered, “I take the chicken across first.  The fox will leave the seed alone.  Then I take the seed across.  Then I leave.  I’m a chicken farmer.  I hate foxes. I certainly wouldn’t take one with me, I’d get rid of it as fast as possible.”

“Oh, hmm, I guess that is sort of logical, but that’s not the answer.  Yet, since it was sort of an answer, we’ll say that one won’t count, and you’ll have to answer another question.”

Jane said, “You know, suddenly I’m feeling a bit ill too, I’ll just pop off for a moment to breathe.”

Princess said, “Would you please excuse us, Marvin, we must have a word.”

Meeting

They held a provisional Quillbeard Quest meeting.

Boris said, “You know how I always say violence is not the answer?”

“No.”

“Right, I never say that, lets get the catapult.  You know those bottles that were supposed to be important to the adventure? We should fling those at the Math beast.  Excelsior!”

Jane was concerned, “No, that’s just not right.  They’re too soft.  We should find rocks.  Does RedBot have any lasers?”

Princess said firmly, “No, violence is not the polite way to deal with this.”

“Well, if we have to answer these horrible puzzles, our quest is probably doomed.”

Franklin called down from the crow’s nest of the ship, “Perhaps you could let me answer them?  I have a math degree.”

They agreed that this sounded like a plan.  They let Franklin down.

Boris said, “I’ll bring the bottles.”

Skunk

They returned to Marvin.

“Oh, so, you, um, have a… skunk…”

Boris said, “Why yes, yes we do.  And I also have this set of bottles.  They are full of skunk juice.  Give us the clue or there will be smell to pay.”

Marvin said, “Would you really unleash that stench?”

“Yes.”

“Really?”

“Yes.”

“Seriously?”

“Yes.”

“Congratulations!  You’ve correctly answered three questions.  And here is the final clue.” There was a flash and a puff of smoke (not pictured) and an owl appeared.

Bubo (1)

“This is Bubo the owl.  Bubo has the power to lead you through to Treasure Island where Quillbeard hid the Gem of Destiny.  The island is protected by a illusory field that makes it look like open sea, but Bubo can see through it.  He will lead you to the Island of Henakau.  There are some things you should know about Henakau.  The Island is populated by the former crew of Captain Quillbeard, so the island is peopled by pirate chickens and cows.  They speak Canadian, so you may need a translator.”

Boris said, “Don’t worry, I speak Canadian, eh.”

“Excellent.  Now when you find the island, make sure to offer them a gift, it’s a tradition there.  If they accept it then you must tell them you’re on the Quest, and then, well, things should work out probably. Now off you go, and take the skunk and those bottles.”

And so they embarked and headed off to Henakau with their new owl guide, relieved that they didn’t have to solve any logic puzzles or math word problems.

Will they find the Gem of Destiny in the next episode and finally be free to pursue other things?  Will the hedgehog start start sitting still when we’re taking pictures?  Will she stop crawling under sets knocking everything over?  These and other questions may or may not be answered in our next episode, Princess Pricklepants and the Perils of Pirate Plunder: the Gem of Destiny (Or Something Like That, Depending on What We Decide To Name It).