Monday, April 02, 2007

All About Longwickle's Friend, Hans Landsteiner (Part 2)

Stop: If you have not already read All About Edwin Longwickle's Friend, Hans Landsteiner (Part 1), you should do so before reading the present instalment. Failure to comply with these instructions may cause dizziness, vomiting, and impotence.
However, tragedy struck when Hans’s biological father dropped by for a surprise visit and was promptly accosted, covered in cheese and eaten by Han’s roommate. The unfortunate eating deeply affected Hans, who vowed from that day forward to fight in defence of vegetable rights.

Odd enough, it was also around this time that Hans developed an acute allergic reaction to cotton. His psychiatrist prescribed pills for his condition, but he could never seem to get them out of the bottle. This proved to be a great inconvenience, particularly since Hans's aunt Betty (on his father's side) was a cotton plant. Every time she came over for a visit, Hans would turn red and swell up like a turnip (and on more than one occasion witnesses say he actually became one).

Despite his difficult childhood and many handicaps, Hans was determined to succeed. In a memoir he wrote: “I’d literally kill for a Nobel Peace Prize!” When he later relocated to Britain, his life-long goal of becoming a Nobel Laureate seemed on the verge of being realised after he single-handedly arranged a peace accord between carrots and the Cheshire Vegetarian Society. However, things took a turn for the worse at the dinner celebrating the accord when all of the carrot delegates were rounded up, juiced and served as the evening beverage. This sparked the violent 1978 parsley protests that culminated in the gruesome Gourd Massacre of April 18th; a day on which, according to noted historian Dame Veronica Wedgwood, “carrot and pumpkin juice flowed through the London streets like water!”

Because of the catastrophic failure of his human and vegetable reconciliation efforts, Hans was passed over for the 1979 Nobel Peace Prize. Instead, the prize was ultimately awarded to an Albanian nun, who Hans described in his journal as “that pretentious little bitch, Teresa!” It wasn't until many years later, after inventing an animal-based vegetable alternative, that Hans came into his own. He was then promptly removed from his own and placed in someone else's.