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Ensconced in furs and various synthetic trappings, the Count brazenly entered the leather rotunda. The chilly reception he now weathered, in a hyperactive state of self-awareness, proved altogether debilitating (somehow manifested in the exaggerated posture of an oft-maligned yet barely present tuft of moustache). Eager to imbibe, the Count reached boldly into a deep velvety pouch encircled by bulbous jewels that covered an emaciated pair of fleshy stilts, quite sinewy and seductive in years past. The room, replete with manservants and various harried unaccountables, took notice of the resplendent treasure that emerged, ready to be used as commerce in an age when barter had been usurped by one-upsmanship.

Simultaneously, the Count was taken aback by a lumbering figure, slowly approaching, who, with each new step, transformed from stranger, to possible acquaintance, to familiar nuisance.

"Frankenberry," the Count muttered to himself. "Shit."

Date Written: January 28, 2004
Author: Texxx
Average Vote: 2.8571

02/4/2004 Joe Frankenstone (2): It turned out he was talkings about the cereal! Ha!
02/4/2004 Lenny: I dunno, Joe, I thought you would've eaten this one up (no pun intended). It's right up your alley - except no one whipped out his dick. I really liked it. I thought it ended at the perfect moment.
02/4/2004 Jon Matza (3): Good enough ending. However, I don't see how a jeweled pouch would cover up Chocula's "stilts"...I assume stilts are his legs and the pouch = the flask he's imbibing from? Unless we're talking about some sort of codpiece and the "resplendent treasure" that emerges is his package (Lenny's comments notwithstanding). Anybody? Also, since when are furs "synthetic", unless they're fake? More importantly, shouldn't this be marked as an inside short? So should Texxx's recent 'Dylwan Matzspar' masterpiece, for that matter. Come on, people.
02/4/2004 Ewan Snow (3): Though there were a couple funny moments ("in an age when barter had been usurped by one-upsmanship" is pretty good), it didn't quite come together. I don't think this is an inside short, however. Nor is it about cereal. It is rather about those rascals Count Chocula and Frankenberry. Unfortunately, this short wasn't as spook-tacular as it might have been..
02/4/2004 qualcomm (3): yeah the surprise ending is good, but the language makes this almost impossible to get through. "fur and other synthetic trappings". the "posture" of his moustache? the pouch with the stilts inside. i would assume that "leather rotunda" is a joke, and a pretty funny one, were it not for these other missteps.
02/4/2004 anonymous: For clarification: the stilts are indeed his legs. The pouch is simply a pouch - nothing more - from which he's pulling a coin. He's wearing furs plus additional garments that do not come from any animal (hence 'synthetic').
02/4/2004 qualcomm: and count chocula doesn't have a moustache. not even a tuft.
02/4/2004 anonymous: Doesn't he have one of those pencil-thin boy band moustaches?
02/4/2004 anonymous: Well, he'd look better with one.
02/4/2004 anonymous: Why is this still here? It is below 2.9.
02/4/2004 Jon Matza: I wonder where (and why) the Count got a giant, jewel-encrusted, leg-covering coin pouch. Re trappings: to convey what you intended it should have been "furs and various synthetic trappings", or something to that effect. "Furs and other synthetic trappings" means synthetic trappings in addition to synthetic furs. Unfortunately, words mean things whether we use them carelessly or not. Tell your friend Frankenlerry.
02/4/2004 Texxx: Can't 'other' simply imply something additional that is not necessarily categorically attached to the preceding component?
02/4/2004 anonymous: No, it can't, or at least, it doesn't. I noticed this when it was a pending short and wondered what the fuck it was supposed to mean.
02/4/2004 anonymous: The count is quite foppish, hence his choice of pouch.
02/4/2004 Will Disney: anonymous see this post re: cutoff level
02/4/2004 qualcomm: yeah, in this case, "other" implies that fur is synthetic. in fact, the sentence as it stands doesn't mean, "the count was ensconced in syntetic furs and other synthetic trappings." rather, it means,: "the count was ensconced in fur (which is a synthetic material) and other synthetic trappings."
02/4/2004 Texxx: Ah, indeed it does.
02/4/2004 Jon Matza: So if you heard "acmeshorts recently received a flood of shorts by Texxx and other sloppy writers" you'd assume the sloppiness didn't apply to you? I think I know the answer...
02/4/2004 anonymous: Seems to be a minor error, in my estimation. I've certainly noticed other missteps in shorts past (bad spelling, grammar, etc.) that receive little or no attention whatsoever. This one creates confusion, but I don't think it sinks the short. In fact, I'll fix it. I wish everyone would receive the same scrutiny/censure.
02/4/2004 qualcomm: hey fella, the scrutiny on the grammar started before you revealed yourself. honestly, when i saw the first sentence in the queue, i thought it might be by maniacs, who has a cute tendency to throw around words without looking them up first. and believe me, that jimson jumps all over my ass when i misuse a word like, say, bustle.
02/4/2004 anonymous: Fair enough. I just thought it took a little more 'personal' tone after my identity was revealed. "So if you heard 'acmeshorts recently received a flood of shorts by Texxx and other sloppy writers'" seems a little more venomous than your normal criticism, no?
02/4/2004 anonymous: I certainly don't mean to give the impression that I take mistakes lightly. Poor grammar in the intro, no doubt.
02/4/2004 Craig Lewis: Um. Sorry, but this writing stinks. The Count, we are told, is "ensconced" in furs; I think the author means to suggest that the Count is flamboyantly dressed -- wrapped in furs? resplendent in furs? -- but ensconced really means to settle oneself in securely (as in a comfy armchair, or seaside cottage) or to conceal oneself (a "sconce," you see, is a kind of small fort). Are we meant to envision the Count tucked away in a fur-lined antechamber to the leather rotunda (just across the hall from the pashmina dining hall)? In any case, there's lots more appalling usage in this short: "the chilly reception he now weathered," "oft-maligned yet barely present," "eager to imbibe," "replete with manservants," etc. I think the author was trying to write in a deliberately florid, "antiquated" style, but he doesn't quite have the ear for it. I'm also distressed by BooBerry's absence from the scene. Has BooBerry been usurped by one-upsmanship?
02/4/2004 anonymous: The Count is meant to be reliant upon his fancy clothing for security (and comfort). BooBerry is a teatotaler, thus his absence.
02/4/2004 Dylan Danko (2): Yes, all around bad. Reminds me of highschoolers esconced in their own velvety, bulbous pretensions.
02/4/2004 Benny Maniacs (3): Bad, not bad, blah blah blah.
02/4/2004 senator (4): Huh, I'm surprised this is getting such low ratings. I guess I'm a sucker for the surprise. Frankenberry! Funny indeed.
02/4/2004 Jimson S. Sorghum: I, too, have been taken to task for grammatical errors, as has scoop.
02/4/2004 anonymous: True, Jimson, true. Just a difference in tone that irked me.
02/4/2004 Dylan Danko: My comment below was written without knowing the author. I was simply agreeing with Lewis. In fact, like Feldspar, I also assumed the author was Maniacs.
02/4/2004 anonymous: Disney has gone through the trouble of making submissions anonymous just so people wouldn't feel that people were criticizing your shorts unfairly. But even now you persist in saying that the low ranking or negative comments are based on who you are. Is it possible that people simply don't think your shorts are well written or funny? Are you sure that the comments are only based on who wrote the short?
02/4/2004 anonymous: From a different anonymous: Good points, anonymous. Also, look at Frankenstone's early vote of two stars. Either this was made because he thought somebody else wrote it and wanted to give it a bad vote for personal reasons, or he actually thought it was a bad short. Is Frankenstone part of the conspiracy against you as well? That doesn't seem likely.
02/4/2004 anonymous: From yet another anonymous: And what's more, teetotaler is not spelled teatotaler. Dumbass.
02/4/2004 anonymous: 1. I have a problem distinguishing between 'tea' and 'tee,' as illustrated in the comments here.
2. I'm not claiming a conspiracy. Not at all! As some of you who read my short later in the day may be unaware, my identity was momentarily revealed through a gaffe on my part when leaving comments early on. Therefore, some (or one) of the authors who had previously voted for my anonymous short left commentary that was colored, in my opinion, by this knowledge. In fact, my name was mentioned in it. Certainly the critiques levied against the work by most were totally without bias, and if you follow the chain of commentary, you'll see that I didn't object to any of that whatsoever. I only responded to clarify certain aspects of the story.