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Featured Stories, Week of January 27, 2019: Fictional Yelp Reviews, Part TWO

Each week we feature stories from members of our group based on the weekend meeting's prompt assignment. For our January 27th meeting, Marcy and Bryan made up twelve fictional businesses and put them in an envelope. We each drew one business, and wrote for ten minutes, with the prompt "Write a Yelp review for these fictional businesses." Each was so much fun that we have decided to share them all in this week's featured stories. (This is part two of two.) Enjoy!

Teas and Tales Critter Cafe

Enjoy brunch and snuggles from our onsite rescue pets! Snarles Barkley the

opossum, FuFu the baby gator, Millie the deer and her dancing ticks, forty hagfish named Larry, and more!

By Alex Lorenzen

Cecil Cerulean ***** 8/31/1988

Los Angeles, CA 0 check-ins

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My trip to Teas and Tales Critter Cafe was a strangely satisfying nightmare. I’d heard of it for ages, but nothing could have prepared me for what I encountered.

FuFu the “Baby” gator was...well, a baby no longer. He stood on his hind legs with uncannily human shoulders square with the doorframe. I asked him repeatedly if they were still open, but the only response I could get was two thunderous moans of “FUUUUUUU FUUUUUUU” from femur-snapping jaws.

I was about to leave and head home when his eyes lit up, red like lasers, and he swung aside like he was on hinges. I realized he been taxidermied God knows how long ago and turned into something like a scaly screen door. A nice touch but hardly a rescue pet I could visit with.

Inside, Millie the Deer was sweet, but she was only bones and skin with a bit of patchy grey fur left. The washboard bumps of her spin were uncomfortable to pet, though she was happy for the company. She rested her head on my knee while I sipped vanilla bergamot tea from a cracked cup. After a while, the forty or fifty ticks on her back looked ready to pounce on me at any moment. When Millie left their walnut-sized bodies bobbed and shook, with yarn tophats and toothpick canes, like they were dancing.

Anyway, we all fear overturned trucks full of hagfish, which brings me to my next point: hagfish slime makes and excellent moisturizer. All the Larrys were happy to provide a spa day’s worth and my skin took on a quality vibrant enough to battle the driest winters.

Overall, it was a worthwhile experience but not really one I’d recommend.

Oh yes, most importantly, future visitors will likely wonder where Snarles Barkley the opossum is. Well, she didn’t snarl or bark as expected, but she did like to bite ankles.

And not let go.

So, I still have her, my rabies-proof little pal. Sorry. 3 STARS

Ray Shrink’s Pest Control An experimental new treatment for removing critters from your home.

What could go wrong?

By Edward Distor



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I was referred to this service by a friend from the neighboring kingdom. He said they helped clear out the dungeons with little trouble. What the hell was I thinking. I had an infestation of rats in my corn fields and wheat storage. After two weeks of nagging by my wife, I decided to give it a go. Their “service expert” said he’d get rid of those rats with a new experimental wand called the Shrink Wand. The rats would shrink to the size of an earthworm, I was told. This way, I can drown the critters to death and make fertilzer out of them.

Somehow, that didn’t happen.

The wand malfunctioned and now these “Rats of Unusual Size” have overrun my farm and forced me and my family to move out. I’m ruined beyond repair and restitution. I swear I’m bringing this matter to Prince Humperdinck. I should have gone to Miracle Maxx…

2 STARS. Never mind - 1.5 STARS.

One-Eye’d Pete’s Hair Cuttery

If ye be on shore leave and in need of a new ‘do, this full service salon and rum emporium be what yer lookin’ fer, matey.

By Marcy Mahoney

It were jest last week I be on shore leave in Barbedos and me locks be needin’ some choppin. Me head was more of a rats nest than a crows nest, if ye feel me. Anywho, I shambled me way into One-Eye’d Pete’s Hair Cuttery to get the job done. It were good to see Pete again – last time I saw him he had two eyes, two hands and two legs, but after the shark attack he decided to retire piratin’ and set up shop ashore, cuttin hair and sellin’ rum and such. It be good work for a retired pirate. So Pete set to me tresses with his comb and hook and tried though he might, he couldn’t get the tangles out, blast it. He did manage to evict the family of sea sparrows that moved in during our brief stint stuck on the isle of crabs, at least. Me hair got shorn but it be clean and managable, if a bit shorter than I be liking. At least on the left. The right side of me hair don’t look too different but that be because Pete’s missin' his right eye, so it’s understandbale. Anywho, the complimentary mojito was great, and his shampoo girl Bad Blanche sure do knows how to do a head massage.

Overall it were a good experience. 4 STARS

The Magma

An upscale hotel/casino/nightclub on Jupiter's volcanic moon Io

By Erik Day

Five friggin stars.

Next, I didn't pay for any of this. There's no way I could have: I won this trip, gratuities included, otherwise the only way to pay for it would be to harvest the organs of lunar drug dealers. So, when you're calling your travel agent based on this review, note that I didn't pay for any of it.

So, what's it like? You come for the view. If you didn't know it was utterly frigging poison outside, you'd never guess. Yeah, I snuck a detecto-pod with me (see my last review on Yelp!), but not once was there radiation, low oxygen or even bad vibes that could get through the walls. Unlike a lunar warehouse, this moon's facilities had wide doorways, vaulted ceilings and giant windows to capture everything from the landing pad to the planet-rise to… yeah, a view of three different volcanoes.

So, Io. Low-gravity to begin with, so you're already kind of floaty – but thank Jupiter (or whatever God you pray to) that they have grav-plates in the john. You''re gonna need it the first time you see three volcanoes erupt at once.

The best part, I guess beyond not actually having sulfur dioxide magma land on you – is that none of it reaches your nose, either. The place smells like lilacs and magnolias: you are truly viewing from the estate of the gods.

The Magma: I'll borrow someone else just to give it three thumbs up. 5 STARS


Knocking wanted bad guys off shelves for 14 years. Need someone found? We'll get to it if we want to.

By Erik Engman

Being a cat-owner myself, I was immediately drawn to this woman because, generally speaking, cats are private, orderly and - yes - excessively cruel and evil. Sounds perfect for a ruthless bounty hunter!

I have to say, first off, that she did the job. I mean, she captured that awful, backstabbing Ex of mine just as she was trying to skip the country. Maybe Cat wasn't the most delicate, and maybe my Ex ended up with a few too many scrapes than she should have, but when you play with cats, expect to be scratched.

No, that was all fine but... this woman has issues.

First off, she had a bad attitude. Whenever we would talk about the case, she would get bored in the middle of the conversation and either walk away, take a nap on the floor, or go bat her hands around at imaginary things floating in the air. When you finally DID get to sit down and talk to her, she would crawl into your lap and growl if you didn't stroke her hair.

Secondly, don't make any sudden noises! A car backfired down the street and she freaked out, jumping straight into the air! I'll never get over having my favorite pair of pants being ripped to shreds. It was a traumatic experience. I'm for sure deducting the cost of the pants from her fee. Her fee-line.

But worst of all... How do I put this delicately? Her hygene is almost non-existant. I don't think this woman has had a proper bath in years, if ever. And you know, out of the corner of my eye I'd catch her licking her self. She'd always stop, of course, when I'd turn my head to her, and she'd pretend to be examining some section of the wall or the ceiling. My guess is that she bathes her entire body with her tongue. I know she's incredibly flexible, because one of her selling points was to turn herself into knots. And I know what you're thinking, but it wasn't sexual. At all. It was just... wrong. That's where I draw the line. The fe-line.

In all I'm giving her 3 out of 5 stars. At the end of the day she did the job. But I know if I hire her again it would be cat-astrophic. 3 STARS

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