Making Sense of Nonsense – Adder’s Milk


Joey Turpentine followed the circus, as there he knew he had a captive audience. The circus owner never minded the strange little man with a big voice being on the circus grounds as he only added to the crowds who gathered to watch the various acts the circus offered.

Joey came with his own ‘troupe’, and once the circus was set up, they would move in, set up their tent while another group would go through the town handing out leaflets announcing his one night only presentation of Adder’s Milk the new wonder drug.

Adder’s Milk the leaflet explained was a drug used by the Hieawaffwaff people in the Amazon jungle. This tribe, explorers had discovered were literally illness free, and their good health was all down to their taking Adder’s Milk each day.

Researchers had since listed the uses of Adder’s Milk and everything from the common cold to cancer had been cured by it.

It was little wonder that by the time the circus gates were open a huge crowd had gathered in front of Joey’s tent, and his assistants were ushering people in. It was standing room only when Joey entered, a bottle of Adder’s Milk in his hand and began his spiel espousing the benefits of his wonderful product.

At one point, his presentation was interrupted by a man claiming he was talking a whole lot of BS. Joey not to be deterred invited the man to the front and asked him if he had any ailment. The man announced he had a withered arm and displayed an arm visibly withered.

Joey opened a bottle of Adders Milk and asked the man to take some he had measured out into a cup. The man did so motioning to the crowd that this act would prove the hoax once and for all.

He drank the liquid and stood triumphant in front of the audience before collapsing onto the floor where he writhed in pain. Joey’s helpers rushed to the man’s aid and lifted to a side table before announcing they had called for help.

By now the audience was growing more and more hysterical and began calling for Joey to be thrown out.

Just as the audience was getting to the uncontrollable stage, there was a movement from the side of the stage. The afflicted man was moving, then standing, then looking at his withered arm, then raising his now cured arm, showing it to the crowd who by now were gasping in amazement as the man went from person to person showing them his now normal arm.

The man turned to Joey and immediately asked to buy ten bottles of the wonder drug.

Within seconds the angry crowd had turned to frantic buyers of the Adder’s Milk.

Within minutes Joey’s entire supply was sold with the unfortunate ones being forced to make orders having been told their orders would be honoured within a week.

By night’s end, the circus had enjoyed a record attendance, and the community had returned to their homes satisfied they had received a great nights entertainment plus a bottle or two of Adder’s Milk to keep them hale and hearty.

The next morning the circus was its usual sleepy self, but Joey’s tent and signage had all disappeared. He was in fact on his way to the next town some fifty miles away where he would buy more sugar and bottles, print off the required labels and await the arrival of the circus caravan.


Written for:

This entry was posted in Uncategorized, Writing prompt and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Making Sense of Nonsense – Adder’s Milk

  1. Fandango says:

    Nice. Con the locals and then move on. Good plan!

  2. Jules says:

    I wonder if fifty miles distance would be enough?
    Nice take.

Please feel free to comment, I appreciate your thoughts.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s