Have Both Informed Their Wives
Of the Arrival of the Spawn of
"Man, Lord A.," my occasional lab assistant, Rob, said unto me, as he leaned against my tank and observed the very finely printed announcement affixed thereon. "There is, like, something really wrong about this birth announcement, but, like, I cannot put my finger on it."
"TO WHAT ARE YOU REFERRING, ROB? I HAVE OBSERVED ALL APPROPRIATE CONVENTIONS AS THEY ARE KNOWN TO ME. THE PAPER, SHE IS MADE FROM THE FIBERS OF THE COTTON PLANT, THE PRINTING WAS ACCOMPLISHED WITH A LARGE STEEL CRUSHING MACHINE—EVEN THE EDGES, THEY ARE AS YOU CAN SEE, OF THE DECKLED. THIS PAPER IS THE FINEST MOULD MADE MATERIAL SIEVED FROM A SLURRY THAT MAN MIGHT MAKE!"
"Dude, I get it. I am totally impressed that you arranged all of this."
"EXCELLENT, BECAUSE I COMMISSIONED THE IMPRESSION OF TEN THOUSAND."
"Like, that's the order, right? Like you can call and confirm once we've checked this proof over, right?"
"You already placed the order?"
"AND PREPARED A STORAGE SPACE FOR THE BOXES; MR. LEEKS AND I AGREED THAT THE CHEETAH ENCLOSURE IN SUBLEVEL B WAS AN UNNECESSARY EXTRAVAGANCE DURING THESE TRYING ECONOMIC TIMES."
He paused a great and extended moment.
"WE CAN EXPECT DELIVERY EARLY NEXT WEEK."
His face was inscrutable.
"And you got rid of the cheetah?" Rob shook his head slowly, like a civil engineer standing over flood-burst levees, witnessing all the folly of impetuous frugality, and I momentarily thought to question my judgement: Had I been too hasty in evicting the cheetah? Was he keeping sufficiently warm and rested in his new home, despite nighttime temperatures hardly breaking free of the surly bonds of single digits? Would he find enough hobos to sate his hunger for plangent song and fresh meat?
Then Rob shrugged.
"Well, anyway, the kid looks awesome."
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