Trousered Ape
An exercise in presumption.
Tuesday, December 07, 2021
FYI: Authorial Websites

The Bride and I both have websites as authors: Hers and mine.
Wednesday, December 01, 2021
Literary Announcements (including one of no little significance)

The Bride’s fourth (and concluding) novel in the Caldwell series, A Place to Belong, is now available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle.

She will be publishing the first book in a new series some time in 2022.

And now the big one:

My book of children’s stories, Unexpected Tales from A to Z, is also available on Amazon. (Just in time for Christmas! Suitable for young readers; also suitable for reading aloud.)


Some things you just can’t expect.

Among them you will find:

Bartholomew and the Banana Blizzard. The denizens of Burensburg are threatened by the activity of a thoughtless gold-mining operation, until Bartholomew finds a solution.

Esmé and the Eloquent Eggplant. Esmé likes to talk to plants. One of them starts to talk back — but there's more here than meets the ear.

Hendrik and the Horrible Hollyhocks. First there was one hollyhock on Hendrik's farm. Then there were two. Now they're out of control and nothing seems to stop them.

Miranda and the Mesmeric Maestro. The War of 1812 is raging and President Madison is quacking like a duck. Miranda finds that a knowledge of Homer is useful.

Pepy and the Princely Prestidigitation. Pepy's father and the Prince of Egypt have been captured by the Amorites. Pepy is no sorcerer's apprentice, but he knows a bit of stage magic. Is it enough?

Ursula and the Urgent Ululation. A pair of train robbers are holding Ursula and her aunt prisoner in a cottage deep in the Black Forest — but they don't know about Ursula’s friend.

The heroes and heroines of these stories are ordinary boys and girls confronted with problems, from an Argumentative Alligator to a Zany Zoo, that call forth cleverness, ingenuity, and courage.

Saturday, November 27, 2021
If Daphne du Maurier Had Been Lazy

Said the new Mrs. Maxim de Winter,
"Just what have I got myself into?
My husband: obsessed;
Mrs. Danvers: a pest;
And Rebecca's ghost smirks through the window."
Thursday, August 26, 2021
Another Literary Announcement
I've sold another short story, "Something the Cat Dragged In," to the anthology Crunchy with Ketchup.
Sunday, July 04, 2021
Literary Announcement
The Bride's third novel in the Caldwell series, A Family to Cherish, is now available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle.
Friday, May 21, 2021
A Tribute to Them
Having commemorated, among others, Godzilla and The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms, it's time to do as much for the giant ants of Them:

ANTS—They’re supersized and vicious;
ANTS—They think that we’re delicious;
ANTS—Our one and only wish is
That they’d go away.

ANTS—We hope they never find us;
ANTS—Oh no, there’s one behind us;
ANTS—You don’t need to remind us
That it’s time to pray.

ANTS—We really hate to meet them;
ANTS—Somehow we must defeat them;
ANTS—Oh God, how can we beat them?
Please show us the way.

ANTS—Hooray, the tide is turning!
ANTS—In smoke of battle churning
ANTS—With bullets, gas, and burning
We blow them away.

ANTS—There’s no more stridulation;
ANTS—We’ve killed the infestation;
ANTS—It’s time for relaxation.
Let’s call it a day.
Monday, March 22, 2021
An Epitaph
For Dora Spenlow Copperfield, one of the most annoying characters in fiction:

The Muse gave to Dickens the idea of Dora—
The scribbler hadn’t the wit to ignore her.
Some readers with sentimentality cried;
The rest gave a cheer when the little twit died.
Sunday, February 21, 2021
Literary Announcement
Volume 888 of the webzine Bewildering Stories includes my story, "The Way the Cat Pounces."
Wednesday, December 23, 2020
Literary Announcement
Another literary announcement: The Bride has published two novels so far, A Promise to Keep and A Heart to Heal and is working on her third. The Neptune volume of The Planetary Anthologies has just come out; it includes my short story, "An Eye for Art." (This is my first published story.)
Tuesday, September 15, 2020
Thirty years ago today, God gave me a wonderful gift (and a far better one than I deserve): the Bride and I were wed. May our marriage be as happy in the future as it has been in the past.
Friday, May 29, 2020
Prayer Request
My oldest brother Paul passed away yesterday at the age of 68. Please pray for the repose of his soul.
Sunday, February 16, 2020
More Nescopecks
I traveled once to Abilene,
When I was young and fairly green.
The people there were all obscene —
I grew up fast in Abilene.

If you should go to Santa Fe,
You'll think your wits have gone astray —
There is no sense in what they say,
Or think, or do, in Santa Fe.

I came one day to Montreal,
Lured there by a siren call.
And now I'm helpless in the thrall
Of sweet, seductive Montreal.
Thursday, August 08, 2019
Said a werewolf who lived in Rangoon,
"I am longing to howl at the moon,
But I fear I'll be clob-
Bered to death by a mob,
For my howling is quite out of tune."
Tuesday, June 18, 2019
Here they are.

First: My wife, drawing on many years' experience as a teacher of theater in a homeschool co-op, has written a how-to book: Sets on a Shoestring: How to Build Sets and Props on a Limited Budget. It is available for preorder now and will be published July 1.

Second: I have contributed to an anthology, Planetary: Jupiter, published by Superversive Press, now available (also in a Kindle edition).

(06/20 update: I suppose I should have included that my contribution to the anthology comprised my old skit "Kronos & Kids" and two new pieces, "The Wretched Fate of Frankenstein" and "I Only Have Eyes for Io".)
Monday, June 10, 2019
Watch This Space
In the near future there will be a couple of announcements of some moment.
Monday, February 11, 2019
Another Limerick
A foolish young fellow from Reading
Enjoyed indiscriminate bedding,
Manifesting this trait
On the very first date,
And eschewing the bother of wedding.
Monday, February 04, 2019
Said a wizened old man from Bhutan,
"My physician has issued a ban
On wine, women, and song,
That my life may be long -
But I dodge it whenever I can."
Wednesday, January 23, 2019
The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms
A small tribute to a classic movie star.

I'd like to introduce myself before this little ditty -
I'm the Beast
From Twenty Thousand Fathoms.
I'm the biggest thing since baseball, I'm the toast of New York City -
I'm the Beast
From Twenty Thousand Fathoms.

I was wakened in the Arctic by a nuclear explosion -
I'm the Beast, etc.
And shortly afterwards I was the terror of the ocean -
I'm the Beast, etc.

The ships I sank, placed end to end, would cross the wide Atlantic -
I'm the Beast, etc.
I drove the Army and the Navy and the Air Force frantic -
I'm the Beast, etc.

An old paleontologist came out one day to meet me,
I'm the Beast, etc.
It was a shock to him when he was eaten up completely.
I'm the Beast, etc.

I hope you'll come to visit me, your friendly Rhedosaurus -
I'm the Beast, etc.
We'll sing this song together and we'll all roar out the chorus:
I'm the BEAST
Monday, December 03, 2018
Beat It
If the Muse is on your doorstep
And you've got no time to write —
You gotta beat it,
Beat it, beat it, beat it.

'Cause the toilet's overflowing
And the baby cried all night —
You gotta beat it,
Beat it, beat it, beat it.

You've got the itch to scribble 'cause you know it's so much fun,
So many stories in your head and none of them begun,
But the cooking and the cleaning and the laundry won't get done -
You gotta beat it,
Beat it, beat it, beat it.

If it whispers in your ear
And offers characters and plots —
You gotta beat it,
Beat it, beat it, beat it.

Then you look into the mirror,
And you're coming out in spots —
You gotta beat it,
Beat it, beat it, beat it.

If the Muse keeps on insisting that it wants to talk to you,
But you have to work all weekend 'cause the project's overdue,
And the kitchen floor's caved in and both the cats have got the flu,
You gotta beat it,
Beat it, beat it, beat it,
Gotta beat it,
Beat it, beat it, beat it.

(Slightly altered from the original, located in the comment thread to this post at Mad Genius Club, where you can see the inspiration.)
Sunday, September 16, 2018
My scribbling's a really bum caper;
My stories are nothing but vapor.
I could make quite a splash
(Maybe even get cash!)
But I will not put pencil to paper.
Sunday, May 27, 2018
Background:  There is a writers' blog I visit, According to Hoyt.  One of the things they do there (mostly for fun) is a weekly writing exercise called "Vignettes": given a one-word prompt, come up with a little sketch or scene; ideally in 50 words, but this is not a rule, merely an incentive to keep the sketch as compact as possible.  I've been taking part for some time.One recent week my Muse (who must have been out on the town the night before) put it into my head to see if I could compose a sonnet using exactly fifty words (50 words / 14 lines = average of 3.6 words per line).  The prompt was "woe"; two - three hour's effort resulted in the following Procrustean verse:

Heedest thou ambition's provocation
(Inflexible, relentless, merciless)?
Reckon on unparalleled success —
Or, despairing, self-defenestration.

Vignetteering versifier, fated
Preposterously to poeticize,
Laboriously striving, reifies
Variegated words, concatenated.

Madsome Muse maniacally taunting,
He (overstraining Reason's fragile tether)
Mortars polysyllables together,
Victorious vocabulary vaunting.

Woe!  To this scribbling simian befel
Unmitigated, dogged doggerel.
Wednesday, April 11, 2018
Prayer Request
UPDATE:  Yesterday, April 12, my wife's mother died.  Please pray for the repose of her soul.

Eternal rest, grant unto her O Lord and let perpetual light shine upon her.  May she rest in peace. Amen.

Could anyone who stops by please take a moment to put up a prayer for my wife's mother?  She was hospitalized with pneumonia the week before Palm Sunday and now has to go into a nursing home.  She is very frail, has congestive heart failure, and is only occasionally lucid; and we don't know how much time she has left.  (Prayers for her family would also be appreciated: this has been a very difficult time for us.)

Many thanks and God bless you.
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
Another limerick
A loose-living fellow named Rollo
Said, “Who needs that stuffed shirt, Apollo?
I much prefer Bacchus,
Whose votaries caucus
For boozing – it’s Bacchus I’ll follow!
Sunday, February 18, 2018
A lady who lived in Berlin
Caused her suitor no end of chagrin:
She would answer his ring
Wearing nary a thing,
And then scream when he tried to come in.
Monday, February 12, 2018
I have a job!
As of today I am employed again: a one-year contract position with a sister company of the one I had been let go from at the end of last August. Heartfelt thanks to everyone who prayed for us.
Tuesday, January 30, 2018
The Dick and Jane Version of "The Cask of Amontillado"
Many years ago I put up a post suggesting how Edgar Allan Poe might have written "Dick and Jane".  Today I was moved to create a companion piece:

The Dick and Jane Version of "The Cask of Amontillado"

Look, look.
See Montresor.
Montresor is not happy.

Look, look.
See Fortunato.
Fortunato is happy.
Fortunato is very happy.
Fortunato is drunk as a skunk.

Look, look.
See Montresor and Fortunato.
Montresor says "Hello" to Fortunato.
Fortunato says "Hello" to Montresor.

"Listen, listen," says Montresor.  "I have just bought some Amontillado."
"Silly, silly," says Fortunato.  "It is carnival.  You cannot buy Amontillado when it is carnival."
"Well, well," says Montresor, "I am not sure whether it is Amontillado."
"Come, come," says Fortunato.  "Let us go and taste it."

Look, look.
See Montresor's palazzo.
No one is there.
The servants are all gone.
They are out getting drunk as skunks.

Look, look.
See Montresor's cellar.
Montresor's cellar is big.
Very big.
Montresor's cellar is full of wine.
And bones.
Human bones.

Look, look.
See Montresor and Fortunato.
Montresor and Fortunato are in the cellar.
Fortunato is happy.
Fortunato is not afraid.
Fortunato is still drunk as a skunk.

"Look, look," says Montresor.  "Here is the Amontillado."
Montresor is playing a joke.
There is no Amontillado.

Look, look.
See Fortunato.
Montresor has chained Fortunato to the wall.
Fortunato is not afraid.
Fortunato thinks it is a very funny joke.
Hear Fortunato laugh.

Look, look.
See Montresor.
Montresor is building a wall.
Fortunato is on the other side of the wall.

Look, look.
See Fortunato.
Fortunato is no longer drunk as a skunk.
Fortunato is sober.
Fortunato is not happy.
Fortunato is afraid.
Hear Fortunato scream.

Look, look.
See Montresor.
Montresor hears Fortunato scream.
Montresor is happy.

Listen, listen.
"For the love of God, Montresor," says Fortunato.
"Yes," says Montresor.  "For the love of God."

Look, look.
See Montresor.
Montresor has finished the wall.
You cannot see Fortunato.
Fortunato is on the other side of the wall.
Montresor is very happy.

Friday, September 08, 2017
A mademoiselle lived in Nancy,
Who had an odd crotchet or fancy:
When asked out on a date,
She would show up too late,
So her marital prospects were chancy.

Said an OB-GYN, "Oh dear,
September's first Monday draws near;
It's long ceased to be fun,
For the same dreary pun
Happens year after year after year."
Friday, September 01, 2017
Yesterday was the last day at the old job (we had been offered a "stay" bonus and a not-too-bad severance package to work through the end of August). So it's time to take a week or so for vacation and then start looking. Continued prayers would be appreciated.
Monday, May 08, 2017
We're staying.
Heartfelt thanks to everyone for your prayers. We've decided to stay here in Pennsylvania and try to find another job; so we would appreciate it if you could continue your prayers for this new intention. God bless you all.
Wednesday, May 03, 2017
We could use some prayers.
What do you do when life throws a curveball at you the size of one of the larger asteroids? Yesterday I learned that my job is moving from Pennsylvania to Florida at very short notice. I have two weeks to decide if I want follow it; and seeing that I'm 61 with a wife and two dependent children, and that while we're not in debt and have a 401K we're not in a position to retire yet, I don't know that I have much choice in the matter. We have just told the children and they are taking it hard. Prayers would be much appreciated.
Thursday, April 27, 2017
I'm alive and well, and turned 61 yesterday. Continuing to scribble: working on a second juvenile murder mystery set in 1929 England. The Bride and I have taking up shooting and visit a local range every couple of weeks or so; for some reason I'm not surprised that she's a better shot than I am (at least I'm better at shooting than I ever was at golf, the only other sport I have taken up in my life - if my performance with a Smith & Wesson revolver was as bad as my performance with a set of clubs, they'd ban me from the range).


Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Please pray for the souls in Purgatory

May the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God rest in peace.

New address bobtheape88...at...gmail...dot...com

  The Ape's Human Bride
    Blogging at Plodding Toward Holiness
  The Authoress
  The Storm Queen

  Those Darn Cats

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dark speech upon the harp
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Domine, da mihi hanc aquam!
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Romish Internet Grafitti
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Shredded Cheddar
Standing on My Head
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V for Victory!
Video meliora, proboque; Deteriora sequor
What Does the Prayer Really Say
Wheat & Weeds
Whispers in the Loggia
The Wine-Dark Sea
Young Fogeys


Gates of Vienna
Midwest Conservative Journal
Tim Blair

Et cetera

About Last Night
Dinosaur Comics
Girl Genius

Links Too Good to Lose

Hey There, Cthulhu
Conan - the Musical
The Gashlycrumb Tinies

Vanity of the Scribbler

Bad Bobby
Thirteenth Night, or, What You Kill
The Danish Astronomer and His Moose - a Drinking Song
Roe v. Wade
If Shakespeare Had an MBA
Strange Religious Xylophones
The Ruler of the Pope's Navee
Oh, Purple Cow - a Sonnet
An Incovenient Tragedy
The King Tut March
Back Yard Haiku
Triolets of Horror
Bishop Trautman and the Translators
The Drunken Ferret Villanelle
The Evil Ternominated
How Do You Solve a Problem Like Godzilla?
Bishop Bo-Peep
Kronos & Kids - A Mythological Sitcom
A Scary Vegetable
St. George? Never Heard of Him
Godzilla - The Musical
Shocking Contraception, or, Ball Lightning
Legion of Faithbots
Occasioned by the Acquittal of Michael Jackson
If Edgar Allan Poe had written “Dick and Jane”

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