The Legend of the Prickly Kid

Now me and the boys were in Clancy’s Saloon, and hoistin’ our mugs in a toast,
When Old Man McGee bursts in through the door, lookin’ as pale as a ghost.
"I pity you, son," he stammered at last. "I reckon you best get yourself hid."
"There’s a feller in town who’s a lookin’ for you, by the name of the Prickly Kid."

My skin went clammy, my hands took to shakin’, the beer went sour in my mouth,
For there weren’t a more fearsome critter alive, from the North clean to the South.
They say when he hunts you, there’s nowhere to run, and you might as well number your days,
Because no man alive’s been known to survive the Kid’s cold, unblinking gaze.

Then the customers scattered, the piano stopped playin’, and slowly I turned around,
At the end of the bar stood the Prickly Kid, never making a move nor sound.
He fixed me right there with a steely stare, and "hewwo" was all he said.
And I took one look in those beady cute eyes, and I plumb keeled over dead.

I'm a wootin' tootin' gunswinger!

Now, the moral of my story’s a warning to you, and I’m sure Sarah R. would agree,
When your time is over, there’s naught you can do, and there’s no sense in trying to flee.
So stay right here and finish your beer, for you won’t be escaping the joint.
When the Prickly Kid comes a-lookin’ for you, you’re definitely getting the point.



  1. awwh<3

  2. This is all just too much!

  3. Janet in Cambridge says:

    OMG! That poem is freakin’ awesome. You are a genius. Is Prickly Kid related to that other larger-than-life desperado, Spiny Norman?

  4. Best picture description EVA!

  5. “hewwo” was all he said…Hahahaha

    That’s great, NTMTOM!

  6. divinebluesky says:

    Bravo, NTMTOM! A poem of rare genius 🙂

  7. biscuithead says:

    Spiny Norman!

    A giant imaginary hedgehog from the Monty Python mockumentary skit “The Piranha Brothers”.
    “Dinsdale was a perfectly normal person in every way, except in as much as he was convinced that he was being watched by a giant hedgehog whom he referred to as Spiny Norman”.

  8. Too cute. wants to snuggle little guy.

  9. OK, after a year of lurking, I HAVE to comment…

    Poem rocks, NTMTOM! The English major in me thinks you sound like Robert Service 🙂

  10. /jawdrop

    that is fantastic.

  11. the “hewwo” line was the best! awesome poem! he does indeed posess a deadly cuteness.

  12. warrior rabbit says:

    Hmm. Was hedgie in the bread pan peckin’ out dough? ‘Cause that’s how I read this…

  13. One of my favorite posts EVER–nice work, NTMTOM!

  14. This wins the whole internet. HE HAS ON A HAT!

  15. NTMTOM is bringing joy to the masses. He must be a) independently wealthy, b) temporarily unemployed, or c) employed by an ad agency. Who else has time and talent to think of these things?!

  16. OMGGGGGG!!!! What more can be said… other than I am dead!! (from the sweet hedge and from the tale that was spun). Way to go NTMTOM!!!

  17. ROTFL….too too funny!

    NTMTOM if you’re not a writer, you should be!

  18. BRAVO! Best story about a picture evah!

  19. Wow, that’s… well, instant classic. I don’t say that lightly.

  20. N. Fritz — He’s *OURS*! AHHHhahahahahaa…

  21. Methinks NTMTOM is a Robert Service fan?

  22. Suzanne, he kinda *is* a writer, y’know?

  23. BouvieGal, you beat me to it! The Prickly Kid seems like a relative of Sam McGee and Dan McGrew. 😉

  24. (dang, first Sparky & now Other Mike again… I’m gonna have to come up with a good post m’self soon; it’s really been too long)

    (but hey, I’ve been working on the 2010 Calendar w/Meg)

  25. Standing ovation for NTMTOM!

    Stunning hat on the Prickly Kid. I wonder if all the desperado hedgies will be wearing them this Spring?

  26. Vallie, they will, if they come to their senses.

  27. Will someone PLEASE write a tune for that verse. We MUST HAVE EET!

  28. Well, hewwo!

    This was the best post for a looong time. 😀

  29. Must…put…hats…on…small…woodland…creatures…

    We’re lucky enough to have a few hedgies in our garden. They’re entirely unfussed by our presence, and will take food from our hand. We’re also lucky enough to live in a very rural area with few neighbours, so we feel okay feeding them (mealworms are apparently delicious).

  30. I’m trying to come up with a clever comment here, but I can’t. Kudos NTMTOM. You rock. Seriously.

  31. But, but, waaah, he keeled over ded!
    Nooooo! Don’t leave us!

    Here lies N.T.M.T.O.M.
    Keeled ded from his own poem.

    (rolls up saloon-girl dress hem and tosses garter)

  32. Michelle S says:

    Truly one of the best posts ever. Anywhere. Pure genius.

    *also keels over ded from ricochet cuteness*

  33. Kind of prickly wierd in that I attended a play last night set in the 1890 Gold Rush.

    For the melody, I’m kind of torn between the tune from the Beverly Hillbillies or
    the Clash
    “Should I stay or should I go?”


  35. NOMTOM, you are brilliant, just brilliant. “Hewwo”, indeed! More, I want more…

  36. (the original) Mel says:

    Damnit Pardner. That’s pure funny. It’s a great legend to tell them lonesome doggies on the trail at night. Hoooo boy.

  37. I have to say, NTMTOM, I laughed out loud at the ending of your song. It reminds me of the joke about the paperbag cowboy. Anyone heard it?

  38. (the original) Mel says:

    *The Good, The Bad and The Prickly theme plays in the background*

  39. In 100 years, when 8th graders are studying classic poetry, the curriculum will include Poe, Frost, Browning, Shakespear, and Not That Mike The Other Mike…

  40. KBO, he’s a RUSTLER!

  41. Hilarious. Reminds me of Mater’s Tall Tales where he tells Lightning (to his face), “You were never seen again.”

  42. Sweet giddy gumdrops. This was AMAZING! Made the morning much better, which is a feat considering I cleaned up 3 puddles of poodle puke.

  43. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  44. That is *such* a NTMTOM kind of post!

    Brilliant even down to the capture. However that is clearly meant to be a folk ballad to be sung accompanied by a hammer dulcimer or a mouth organ.

    In fact, the Smithsonian’s looking into recording that for their music archives.

  45. Kristabelle says:

    Eggsewent job, NOMTOM!

  46. I would love to hear Nick Cave’s take on this chilling ballad.

  47. ButtaRumCake says:

    OK – I have to admit, this is as cute as Berthaservant’s story that has stable boy & his proud buttocks!

  48. Peg of Tilling says:

    I hear the Prickly Kid once shot a ham just for snorin’.

  49. Awestruck at NOMTOM. AWWWstruck at the photo.

    NOMTOM, you are TEH WIN!!!

  51. Fantastic post!! *applause for NTMTOM*

  52. Fantastic poem! And kewl pic too! Bravo Mike!

  53. Pishaw That was totally a Festus story.. In Poem of Course! (for you Young-uns google Gunsmoke.. the TV show)

    NTMTOM… Thanks for the memories from the bottom of my pea pickin heart.

  54. Hewwo!


  55. berthaservant says:

    I think this is horrible and obvious.

  56. @NTMTOM: I have said this before, and I will say it again – Oh, Master – we are not worthy! *splot* *heddesk*

  57. warrior rabbit says:

    Will someone PLEASE write a tune for that verse. We MUST HAVE EET!

    Try reading it to The Devil Went Down to Georgia. Really.

  58. I want NOMTOM to write my biography.

  59. I love the hovertext, too!! NTMTOM, you truly are a literary genius. Take it from a long-time editor, you have what it takes. I hope you are putting that talent to good use in ways that earn money — not just kudos from us CO’ers who have nothing better to do than “awwww” over cute pictures.

  60. A+mazing!

  61. @Theresa:
    yes! although I heard it like this:

    Man: What’s he wanted for?
    Sheriff: Rustlin’.

  62. NTMTOM, I agree, you rock the caption-writing world. Go forth and, um, rock some more!

    P.S. The hedge be cuteness, too.

  63. That was EPIC.

  64. HedgePigLove says:

    As the honored mother of one of the founding members of the Manly Hedgeboyz (NO WIMMENZ ALLOWED), I must say that my dear Master Artie Hufflepuff would have, very much, approved of this poem.

    In honor of all of the current Many Hedgeboyz in ours lives, and those that have crossed the bridge, I vote that NTMTOM become an honorary member of the club. (He just has to agree to never share his mealies, always scorn women, and huff when told he needs a baff.)

  65. Well, that makes throwing my garter a bit … takes garter back.

  66. Pyrit, don’t feel bad– *someone* must appreciate your garter.

    NB I attended this exhibition a couple of weeks ago:{49F931E9-1441-4A0D-8387-D91D9F2EAC5A}&HomePageLink=special_c3a

    It was wonderful, but their idea of a girdle was not our idea of a girdle. 😉

  67. @ warrior rabbit: That’s exactly how I was reading it…The Devil Went Down to Georgia.

  68. Redonkulously brill! You’re as always, my hero NTMTOM!

  69. Warrior Rabbit, you hit the nail on the head. You can’t pick a better tune to read this in than “The Devil Went Down to Georgia.” =)

  70. Move over, Wocky Waccoon! This made my month. Love it, NTMTOM!

  71. renee in tx says:

    totally inappropriate comment in 3.. 2…

    I’ve never wanted children, but srsly NTMTOM, if you make a donation I will gladly populate the world with your brilliant offspring.

    Please excuse my behavior.

  72. Boomer's Babysitter says:

    What can be said that hasn’t been already?! I’m out of words.

  73. Mary (the first) says:

    Renee just barely beat me to it because my first thought was “NTMTOM I love you!!”

  74. dont know whether you guys seen this b4

  75. I heard Johnny Cash singing this! No, really, think of it.

  76. That’s not Johnny Cash, that’s River Phoenix. Or possibly River Tam.

  77. You had me at “Hewwo.” ROFL!

  78. momof2kitties says:

    Nuh-uh. It was Joaquin Phoenox you heard there, lurkerType.

    BTW, this is brilliant. I am awestruck.

  79. momof2kitties says:

    Some people might even call him Joaquin PhoeNIX, but ya know, I gotta be different…

  80. Like I said, I just visit cuteoverload for the articles! This was brilliant! I bow to your creativity! (Okay, the heggie in the hat was a killer too! Oh! Oh! I just made a pun!)

  81. Okay, berthaservant, you made your point, now just mosey along outta this here joint.

  82. BRAVO! Absolutely hilarious.

  83. Hi everybody:

    Thanks for all the comments on this post (and, by extension, all the comments I’ve gotten since I started here). It was fun to write this, and I’m happy that so many of you enjoyed it so much.

  84. Another former English major who has never commented before, but was moved to by this post: that poem is perfection, Meg. Perfection!

  85. (Fans in stands do “the wave” for NTMTOM)

  86. Robert Service would be so proud of you!

  87. Make that a wootin’ tootin’ lasso-loopin’, pop-gun shootin’ gunswinger!

  88. Hey Peeps — I just got an email from BerthaServant, saying (OK, I’m paraphrasing a bit) “OMG I’m so sorry, I totally meant to follow up with the PUNCHLINE but forgot, I don’t hate you!”

    So. Heh.
    BServ, you wanna take it from here?

  89. That is so adorable, and NTMTOM, that poem is genius!

  90. berthaservant says:

    FOR THE RECORD, I did not write OMG in my e-mail to Teho!!!

    That having been said, this was to have been my follow-up post that got postponed because of getting swamped at work (that Santa is a slavedriver):

    “By that I mean HORRIBLE that NTOMTOM will not be awarded the Peabody Prize and OBVIOUS that the mainstream media will overlook his satirical genius once again!!!”

    Epic fail on joke execution, and my apol-olly-logies to NTMTOM and others.

    (And I thought of “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” for the medley).

    Mike — You had me at hewwo.

  91. totalee puppy says:

    NTMTOM, your poem is to die for…

  92. I thought the poem was thoroughly brilliant the whole way through. The awesome closing pun was icing on the cake. Huzzah!!

  93. Oh, he loves that hat! You can just tell.

    I’d love to see a French beret next. Hee!

  94. Yeah, he’s right; he actually said “ZOMGxors!!!” d00dz.

    Also, I’m Steve Jobs. (I am SO DARN SICK of Macworld I can’t even tell you, btw; I think this year I’ll just go fishing instead.)

  95. Bravo Nomtom.

  96. [tip o’ the ol’ Stetson to NTMTOM]

  97. Not only is the epic saga of the Prickly Kid sheer genius, but we must not overlook the equally brilliant shameless (yet tasteful) marketing of the calendar, which was seamlessly woven into the tale…nicely done, NMTOM. My admiration knows no bounds.

  98. There are no words for how epic this is. EPIC.

    Plus that’s a really cute hedgehog. Though I can’t say as I’ve ever seen an ugly hedgehog.

  99. Hi Subhi!
    (‘mornin’ Teho, Hon Glad, all)

    Nik – At first reading, the poem’s stand-alone brilliance blinded me from the nuances you mention. But yes, after further readings, yes, “nicely done”. “Shameless marketing”? That’s subliminal advertising – and I LIKE eet!

    But, see vat I mean? Dis is vat I vas mentioning about oileah. Da craziness. Can you believe dis guy? Oy vell, at least I guess it makes up for dat French accent fiasco a cuppla days ago.

  100. Pyrrrit,
    Such a mishegass! The noive!

    NB: My grandpas weren’t even Jewish, and they talked like that!

  101. Dinsdale!

  102. Just wonderin’ as I wander here, might we have an Epic Pome (spelled just like that) catergory?

    NOMTOM, what a delightful world you inhabit (I hope).
    Your creativity and willingness/ability to play with words so deftly are just wonderous.

    Berthaservant, for Philosophizing, you have no rival! You keep us sane again.

  103. Brandy Martinez says:

    This was definitely sung by Johnny cash puts be in mind of big bad John

  104. Katrina, how’s the pewmonia?

  105. Well, how ELSE would you spell “pome?”

  106. I used to spell poem p.o.e.m.
    But now I spell it n.t.m.t.o.m.

  107. Brilliant. I’d recognize that “Legend of Sam McGee” meter anywhere.


  108. Gail (the first one) says:

    @Theresa: Epic photo! Are we back on the Pommy accent??

  109. Pommy? Pommy bahstids are the blokes from thit chilly island? On the backside of the world? According to the most up-to-date maps?

  110. I *heart* NTMTOM and his poem! Also lurve the Prickly Kid.
    The “hewwo” slayed me. SLAYED!

  111. Oy now. (leans in) Nowt wrongly wit’ blokes ‘avin’ a bit o carry-on oy sez… (winks) A foin bunch those Pommies ah.

  112. Mary (the first) says:

    I totally printed this out to take home and put on my bulletin board for whenever I need a laugh.

  113. Theresa- It is still here, but with a gram of Biaxin in it over two days, I’d make the smart bet on me now. I get winded unbelievably easily (duh< I guess), but as long as I do nothing for ages at a time (something the Fibro has taught me to do so eptly), I am on the right track. Thanks. Tomorrow-a shower!

  114. Theresa- MMM pome vit-a-mine C-thanks, pal!

  115. NTMTOM, are you married? Would you like to be?!!?

  116. Too cute!

  117. How cute! I heard about the Prickly Kid from Rob White.