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Friday, April 8, 2011
Puff (the Magic Dragon) busted on possession charges

LONDON -- Puff (the Magic Dragon), who had disappeared from the public eye following the last Peter, Paul and Mary Reunion Tour, re-appeared in a London courtroom today.  Puffy, as he is currently known, was arrested in Heathrow Airport after drug-sniffing dogs alerted customs officials to a suspicious smell.

Puffy MD, as he was promoting himself, was on the way to the first leg of a series of now-cancelled hip-hop house concerts slated to begin next weekend in Amsterdam.

The barrister representing Puffy, the Honorable Lord Beaverbrook, said that his client was "absolutely, undeniably, unequivocally innocent of all charges and claims against him."  According to Lord Beaverbrook, Puffy hasn't done any "illegal substances" since he entered treatment at the Betty Ford Center in 1989.

"In his prime Puffy toqued his dope, just like we all did back in the day, but now he won't even touch out-of-date cottage cheese," said Beaverbrook.

It's a simple case of mistaken olfactory, Lord Beaverbrook contends.  "The dogs smelled smoke, without a doubt, but he's dragon for God's sake!  What's next?  Arresting Topo Gigio coming through Gatwick for having Limburger on his breath?" asked Beaverbrook.

Regarding the "green vegetable matter found on Mr. Puff's person," Lord Beaverbrook argued that this was "an herbal preparation Mr. Puff used to treat his glaucoma."  This eye condition, which is an issue in a civil suit filed by Puffy against Warner Brothers, was, according to briefs filed earlier in Los Angeles, "induced by overexposure to the fine print on record industry contracts."

In the late '60's Puffy was indicted and tried twice, but convicted neither time, on drug smuggling charges.  Accusations of jury tampering and witness intimidation were never proven.  One key government witness disappeared just before he was scheduled to testify.  Ashen remains found shortly thereafter could not be identified.

Inside sources at the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency continue to be convinced that Puff was the linchpin in the Hanah Lee-Los Angeles drug connection.

Puffy is currently being held in HMP Canterbury, a men's prison holding foreign nationals who are expected to be deported.  Located in Canterbury, Kent, England, Canterbury Prison is operated by Her Majesty's Prison Service.

Lassie named Poet Laureate; produces doggerel

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Stormy confirmation hearings ended late last night as former television actress Lassie was narrowly confirmed by the United States Senate as Poet Laureate of the United States.  As has become the norm for Senate confirmation hearings of late, both sides went nuclear with Lassie's qualifications for the office being disparaged, while Lassie's opponents found themselves being vilified.

Fellow poet Snoop Doggy Dogg, supported by a contingent which included Ice-T, Ice Cube, Vanilla Ice and Milli of the pop duo Milli Vanilli, defended Lassie's nomination.  "If a bad actor can be president, I don't see why a bad actress can't be poet laureate. The Gubernator used stunt doubles too, you know," noted Dogg.

A pivotal moment in the hearing came when the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals shifted positions.  PETA, which originally opposed Lassie's nomination because of her public position on carnivorism, were won over by Lassie's tail-wagging pledge to eat only tofu-based dog food during her tenure as poet laureate.

While trans-species activists hailed the appointment as "ground breaking," a spokesperson for the Coalition Advocating Traditional Sense said that "while some of our best friends are dogs; this is a slippery slope.  What's next?  A lab-coated chimpanzee as surgeon general?"

Some observers thought a swaying moment was Lassie's own concluding statement to the confirmation committee which featured a reading of one of the poet's most beloved poems, "Trees . . . and Hydrants."  Through an interpreter, Timothy Martin, Lassie recited the poem's most poignant verse: "I think that I shall never see a tree on which I cannot pee."

The final vote followed strict party lines, except that all of the Democratic females crossed over the aisle to vote for Lassie's confirmation.

Gary D. Gaddy came through Heathrow Airport once, in the fall of 1971, without a whiff of trouble.
A version of this story was published in the Chapel Hill Herald on Friday April 8, 2011.
Copyright  2011  Gary D. Gaddy  

Authored by Gary G. Gaddy at 7:55 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, April 6, 2011 4:21 PM EDT
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