BEANSPROUTS AND BURGERS

Another strange but true story from the annals of Y llyfr bach goch. Dedicated readers and regular recipients of Zorch News will know what to expect. Read on......
      These are the voyages of the starship Park Royal Enterprise Trust. Its two and a half minute mission - to create the world's greatest rock song, and to boldly split the infinitive whilst keeping out alien music forms.
      'Stardate 2526.1.34 Captain James T. Zorch reporting. We have been in orbit around planet Earth on MCPS patrol now for six weeks and have not been able to report any incursions to our space until today, when we came across a ship of a strange design resembling a 20th Century Space Shuttle with a peculiar black and yellow logo on the side featuring a grinning face with hair standing on end.'
      'Lieutenant Aquahuru, prepare to contact the other ship. Open all hailing frequencies and request ID'.
She's cute!      Aquahuru sat motionless at her console. 'Oh gawd, she's listening to that bloody Glenn Campbell tape again - give her a nudge, Dellspock', said the Captain. First Officer Dellspock, looking resplendent with his massive bulk encased in a black leather jacket with an eagle on the back, strolled over to the chaos that was Aquahuru's console, tapped her on the shoulder and pointed to the Captain. Aquahuru leapt to attention, tottering on impossibly high heels, and upon receiving her orders, proceeded to clean away the pile of empty Coke tins and broken biscuits from her console, eventually revealing the communications module. Her mellow tones rang around the bridge as she attempted to make contact with the vessel.
      'It seems that they have some extremely crude type of AM MTV communication system, sir', she said.
      'OK, Aquahuru, patch me through on visual', said the Captain adjusting his studded belt as he pulled in his stomach and patted down his sideburns for best effect. The Captain stood up, legs apart and clasped the microphone in one hand forcing the mike stand over at a crazy angle. He tossed his head back, raised his other hand and howled into the mike, 'Weeelll, all right, you lot, we want ID and we want it now.' Dellspock cringed at the discordant sound of his Captain's voice. Suddenly the thought of Glenn Campbell didn't seem so awful. For a brief moment he even toyed with the idea of visiting the sonic history department to listen to Pat Boone... The Captain wailed on - 'If you don't reply, we'll send across an expeditionary force of Klingonz'. The crew gasped. Nobody expected The Klingonz...... Meanwhile, strange rumbling sounds could be discerned from the lower depths of the ship....
      Mike White looked out of the window of his customised space shuttle in disbelief. What was this strange craft looming up of the port side? It appeared to be shaped like a gigantic double bass covered in black leather embossed with studs, with a green and white flag with a red dragon in the middle stuck on the side. He shook with fear and turned round to yell at the rather rotund, balding man snoring in the back - 'DAD! HELP!'.
      Old Sammy White had lived too long. He looked at his son and shook his head sadly. What was wrong with the boy now? All his life he'd given the boy everything he'd wanted, and when he said that he wanted to be an astronaut he'd gone out and bought him a second-hand space shuttle from See Bee's scrapyard. So what was he whingeing about now? He looked out of the window and saw the huge craft pulling up alongside. He sighed. 'It's fate already, my boy', he said and went back to sleep.
      Mike White looked at the TV screen in front of him. A strange looking man dressed in a pink and black drape suit leered out at him demanding to know what he was doing in this sector. He trembled in fear. He looked into the face frowning at him from the screen. The face, the greasy hair and sideburns were all burned indelibly into his mind.
      Meanwhile on the bridge of the Park Royal Enterprise Trust, the crew were studying their Liber Ex Doctrina, and they had come to the conclusion that, strange though it might seem, they were indeed looking at a ship from the late 20th Century. Captain Zorch and Dellspock decided to go into the library to search for more information. On their way to the library they were disturbed by the rumbling noise coming from the cargo bay which was growing in intensity. 'I'm sorry Sir', said Dellspock, 'but I promised The Klingonz some rehearsal time and they appear to have chosen a rather inopportune moment'. 'No matter Dellspock, we must press on with our mission', said the Captain.
      'I've managed to find some pertinent information, Sir', said Second Lieutenant Fisher, fiddling with his monocle as he operated the computerised history module and interloculator. 'It appears that the ship that we are looking at comes from what used to be called the United States of America'. Captain Zorch burst out laughing - 'The United States of what?' he blurted, 'America's that farm across the Atlantic populated by Gauchos who supply the world with burgers. Launch a spaceship? Them?'
      'Not exactly, Sir', said Fisher quietly, 'I think that it's slipped through some sort of time hole to be here. Way back before 1997, the United States of America was indeed a great country, but in that year, the British election produced a freak result in which Screaming Lord Sutch became Prime Minister and in Wales and Scotland the Nationalists won all the seats. They promptly declared independence and the EU collapsed because the Italians refused to learn Welsh. The three British states set up a new economic union with no trade restrictions because nobody could remember the Welsh word for Customs, and eventually they became so powerful that the British Empire was re-established, eventually leading to a new World Government based in Aberystwyth. The craft we are looking at is populated by people who have no knowledge of all this and they must be sent back to their own time before they destroy the fabric of time, and we all run out of Wendyburgers.'
      Captain Zorch realised the gravity of the situation. A world without Wendyburgers was not something he wished to contemplate. The thought of Dellspock eating pizza was horrifying. The Captain and Dellspock dashed back to the bridge. By now the noise from The Klingonz was getting deafening. Dellspock cursed the person who had revived the ancient Welsh law of tý un nos that, in its modern form, had given The Klingonz the right to live on the ship.
      'Fire lasers', ordered the Captain. There was a blinding flash and the ancient craft vanished, leaving nothing but a few fragments resembling pieces of an old fashioned 12 inch vinyl record spinning in space. By now the noise from below was becoming impossibly loud. 'OK, patch me through to The Klingonz in the cargo bay, Aquahuru', screamed the Captain. 'Now listen Mocker', he bawled into the mike, 'if you lot don't cool it, I'm gonna stick Aquahuru's Glenn Campbell tape all over the ship's intercom!'.
      Peace descended upon the ship as the Captain leaned back in his chair and crossed his black cavalry twill encased legs. He toyed with a glass of brandy and Coke, waggled his winklepickers and drifted into reverie. His mind began to wander back to earlier lifetimes. It was a long time since his early days as a trainee telephone engineer in Sîr Ceredigion. Without realising it he started to murmur gently - 'I am a lineman for the county...'
spaceship lurching downwards      Meanwhile.....
      'DAD! DAD!' Screamed Mike White. 'Yes I know son', said Sammy White, rubbing the tomato sauce off his smelly Old Town Records T-shirt, 'I was listening in on the intercom. They're gonna blast us into bits already. It's fate. I'm so nervous I can't say it!'
      Too late Mike White tried to start up his ship and get out of trouble. There was an awful bang and the ship lurched wildly downward, downward, spiralling dizzily towards Planet Earth.
      The workers at J. Pao (Beansprouts) Ltd. looked up in amazement as a spacecraft crashed through their factory roof. A ragged looking American astronaut staggered from the smoking, twisted wreck and lurched towards the door covered in Chinese food. Blinded by a helmet covered in beansprouts he lurched out into Minerva Road and turned right, tripping up and falling to the ground outside a blue roller-shutter door with a Gas van parked outside. He managed to scrape away the beansprouts from his visor and was about to get up when he saw a huge crêpe soled shoe inches away from his face. He looked slowly up, past the luminous green socks and tight denim jeans, past the studded belt and the 'Fifth Big Rumble' T-shirt to that face. He looked at that face, the greasy hair and the sideburns, and he knew that face. He knew it was the end. He heard his father's voice - 'It's fate.......'
 
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