I've had a few requests to reprint my Hard-Boiled Grinch poem from several years back. And since I was just talking about Lanny, who appears in the poem, I figured this was a good time.
by Charles R. Rutledge, with apologies to Dr. Seuss and Mickey Spillane.
Every Who down in Who-Ville liked Christmas a lot...
But the Grinch, who lived just north of Who-ville, did not.
The Grinch hated Christmas. The whole Christmas Season.
Now please don't ask why. No one quite knows the reason.
But one night while the Grinch dreamed Grinch dreams in his bed,
Someone crept up Mount Crumpet and killed the Grinch dead.
Now the Whos have no lawmen so I got the call,
With my pals, Chris and Lanny in no time at all,
We looked over the crime scene,
We examined the clues,
We checked in the fireplace, we opened the flues.
"He could have been strangled,"
That was Lanny's Theory.
"Or beaten" said Chris,
But I was still leery.
For I thought that the thing that had made the Grinch dead,
Was the humongous hole that was blown in his head.
"We must go down to Who-ville," I said to the guys,
"And question the Whos before someone else dies.
Lanny you can check uptown and I will check down.
Chris you check the dives on the outskirts of town."
"It's a quarter past noon and we must solve this riddle,
We'll check all parts of town, then we'll meet in the middle."
To the dark edge of Who-ville Chris strolled without fear,
To find Who informants, to ply with Who beer.
He met Hortense Whohah at the foot of Mount Crumpet,
She's the world famous who-ho, the well known who strumpet.
"A Who who's a hooker?" Chris puzzled and pondered.
Then back to her boudoir the two of them wandered.
We'll switch now to Lanny to keep this tale clean,
He'd been ambushed by the Who Gang,
The Who crime machine.
Lanny picked out their leader, a big who named Moe.
Gave him one chance to tell him what he wanted to know.
But Moe wasn't too bright and he made an attack.
My pal Lanny kicked Moe, knocked him flat on his back.
Then he broke both his ankles.
He broke both his wrists.
He rained blows on the top of his head with his fists.
By the time that Lanny had finished with Moe,
He'd learned Moe knew nothing, and decided to go.
Meanwhile I realized I'd made a mistake.
Something at the cave was decidedly fake.
We'd been so anxious to examine the scene of the crime,
That an important fact had escaped at the time.
With the answer ringing like a long winded trumpet.
I turned my feet North and went back up Mount Crumpet.
While outside the cave lay snow wide and deep,
No tracks marked the passage so how could there creep,
A person or persons to finish the Grinch?
I reached the top of mount of Mount Crumpet and crept inch by inch,
To the mouth of the cavern to peer deep inside,
And there lurked the culprit with eyes wild and wide.
Since the snow showed that no one had walked out or entered,
There was only one suspect on whom the search centered.
In deduction and reason my brain had been lax,
The only possible killer was the Grinch's dog, Max.
He still had deer antlers tied to his head,
And the look in his canine eyes filled me with dread.
He still held the gun that had murdered his master,
The dog could move fast, so I had to move faster.
The thing that I now had to do made me sick.
So I got out my gat.
And I got it out quick.
Kachow went the roscoe,
Kapow went the piece.
I tried for a flesh wound,
Nicked his skull with a crease.
"If he gets a good lawyer, he'll be out in a year,"
I told Chris and Lanny, "Now let's get out of here."
"Wait a minute," said Chris, "There must be a lesson.
There's always a moral so don't keep us guessin."
I shrugged as I gazed down at Who-ville below,
Still waiting for Christmas, still covered with snow.
"If there's anything, guys, that's to be learned here,
It's don't make your dog dress up like a reindeer."