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An Imp in the Garden
Special Spring Feature!

"Hello, I'm Marsha Steward, and for this month's gardening feature, we're going to tour the newly landscaped grounds of stately Imp Manor, here in beautiful rural Wisconsin. My, what an amazing transformation! You would hardly believe that a few short months ago this was a bombed-out wasteland that qualified as a Superfund clean-up site.

"My, what an--interesting variety of plantings. There must be MANY exotic species here that even I am not familiar with. I'll just go up and knock on the door--."

(Knock, Knock. PTOO!)



"Yeah, whaddya want?--Hey, you're that Marsha Steward, ain'tcha?"

"Agh--yes, I--that hanging pot SPIT in my eye."

"Oh, did it? Yeah, them are Spittoonyas. They'll do that, if you turn your back on them."

"How can they spit in your eye if you turn your back--? I'm rather confused. Perhaps I need to step back and start over."

"Watch it--oh, well."


"M--Mr. Imp, SOMEthing is --is "tinkling" down my leg!"

"Yep, those are my Pee-on-thees. (Sniff!) Fragrant, ain't they?"

"I think "redolent" would be a better term. Mr. Imp, WHAT sort of garden have you planted here?"

"What, you mean my Secret Garden? My Garden of Eatin'?"

"Garden of "Eatin"? These don't look like vegetables to me."

"Nah, who needs 'em? I'm a raw-meat kind of fellow, myself. I mean, if you ain't careful, the Garden'll eatcha. See?"

"I don't believe I do."

"These is my projects to make warfare more cheap and easy. See, poor Third World countries got to spend all their cash buyin' arms from developed nations. What I aim to create is sustainable warfare through agricultural production of weapons. And I do believe I've done a lot to improve the breeds."

"I've never heard of such a thing!"

"Sure you have! Just listen!"

"What's that roaring sound? Is someone cutting brush?"

"Naw, that's the wind through the chain-saw grass. Lots better than regular saw grass. And that chiming over there? That's the bowie-knife grass. I bred it up from plain old bayonet grass. By the way, when you came in, did you come along that path, there?"

"Why, yes, I did. Why?"

"Because you're gonna need some Calamine lotion. That's my plot of poison-ivy kudzu hybrid. Just a good as land mines for area denial, plants itself, and you can see where it is later."

"Oh, dear, now I'm starting to itch! Goodness, what's that? Firecrackers?"

"No, dang it. The raspberry grenades are going off too soon again. I have to find a way to slow the ripening process."

"Raspberry grenades? Don't you mean pineapple?"

"Oh, we've got those, too. (BOOM!) In fact, there goes one now. Neighbor kids must be sneaking in the fields again. The raspberries are smaller, concealable, for close in work."

"I suppose you're growing incendiary squash, too."

"What? Of  course not. That would be ridiculous. BEANS are the incendiaries. They generate their own inflammable gas. I'd show you some, but a fuel-air detonation took out the whole field."

"Mr. Imp, you are surely the possessor of the most twisted mind I've ever met!"

"Why, it's been a real pleasure to meet you, too, Ms. Steward!--Watch out!"


"Argh! Damn!--er, I mean--for the Mayhem Illustrated Gardening Special Feature, this is Marsha Steward, signing off."


"--and just wait until the Editors get the bill for these shoes!"


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