VARIATION ON AN OLD VICTORIAN THEME
Or, only twelve shopping days before Christmas and what shall I get the love-of-my-life?
By Theolonius McTavish, (a quirky kilted chap, affectionately referred to as "Snookums"), who's doing his best to make the season cheery and bright by sending thoughtful gifts and cards to the lady of his life, better known as "Sweetums".
Snookums: On the first day of Christmas…I’m sending you a hairy woodpecker (Picoides villosus) in a holly tree.
Sweetums: How thoughtful of you to deliver a hairy whatsit in of all things a holly tree; (you forgot to include a care package…what does it eat?)
Snookums: On the second day of Christmas…I’m sending you two half-pint horses, (they were a steal of a deal at the auction last weekend!)
Sweetums: Love the half-pint horses I received, (thank goodness they don’t eat too much…which reminds me, what should I feed them?)
Snookums: On the third day of Christmas, I’m sending you three hartebeests (A. lichtensteini, ...all the way from Africa!)
Sweetums: I was amazed to get your safari surprise today although I’m not sure where I’m going to put them as the front lawn is getting a tad crowded what with the hairy whatsit and two half-pint horses…(by the way, exactly what do they like to they like to chomp on?)
Snookums: On the fourth day of Christmas, I’m sending you four "hawksbills" (a truly wonderful find at the flea market in Zanzibar…hope you enjoy your carnivorous sea turtles!)
Sweetums: Well, I must say, I’m a bit overwhelmed with your latest gift…(pray tell, how do I nourish these charming sea monsters? …I only hope they don’t take a fancy to the hairy whatsit, two half-pint horses, and three hartebeests!)
Snookums: On the fifth day of Christmas, I’m sending you five hard-shelled clams (better known as “Quahogs") …they reminded me of our honeymoon in Bora Bora.
Sweetums: It was sweet of you to recall a passionate night of bliss in Bora Bora, but I got sick in the tummy after consuming a bucket of those things, (and now what the heck am I supposed to serve these cold-blooded critters anyway?)
Snookums: On the sixth day of Christmas, I’m sending you six hedgehogs (aren’t they adorable!)
Sweetums: Yes, I have to admit it, a half-dozen hedgehogs make a nice addition to the menagerie on the front lawn, which by the way is attracting a lot of attention from the neighbors (…but what do these hungry hole-diggers consume besides golf balls?)
Snookums: On the seventh day of Christmas, I’m sending you seven hobgoblins (a little something to add some pizzazz to your place!)
Sweetums: I’m getting a little exasperated with your ludicrous largesse, because the hobgoblins are scaring all the dogs in the neighborhood half to death not to mention starting a stampede of the Christmas creatures camping out on my front lawn leaving it in a dreadful mess (… besides they’re eating me out of house and home!)
Snookums: On the remaining five days before Christmas, I’m sending you my heartfelt token of affection, a dozen heffalumps!)
Sweetums: Get Lost You Little Nincompoop!! I’m packing the Christmas creatures off to a petting zoo! And as for those horrible heffalumps, they’re going out ‘special delivery’ today to all those political parties as my seasonal surprise to them!!