Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Recipe For Disaster

Just add birds.

Sunday, 6:45 p.m.: Bob, Elli, and the kids fold up their tent and pack their camping gear back into the car for the trip home. A small bag of biscuit mix goes missing, but it's overlooked and the family leaves without it.

Monday, 5:37 a.m.: Daylight begins to break. The sound of snoring resounds from most tents. Meanwhile, the formerly missing bag of biscuit mix has been found by two magpies who are dragging it around, creating complex, almost geometric patterns as they tussle with the leaking package.

Monday, 6:27 a.m.: A woman named Christina, visiting the campground for her morning jog, sees two magpies making a mess. They seem to be scattering biscuit mix from a bag all over the parking area. She chases the birds off, deposits the nearly-empty bag into a trash can, and heads out on her run.

Monday, 8:42 a.m.: Josh Finkle, a local policeman on vacation with his family, sleepily emerges from his tent and begins crossing the parking area, headed for the toilet, then freezes. Something is wrong. Very wrong. There is a suspicious white powder scattered widely, in an odd pattern resembling a giant, warped pentagram. The hair on his neck bristles. He calls his office and reports what he has found.

Monday, 9:17 a.m.: Finished with her relaxing morning run, Christina gets into her car and drives home for breakfast. Shortly after leaving, from across the lake, she sees two fire trucks, three police cars, and several large vans entering the campground, with all lights flashing.

Monday, 9:24 a.m.: Twelve police officers, a SWAT team, 14 firefighters, and a hazmat team lock down the campground. All campers are rousted from their tents, the showers, the toilets, and isolated inside a temporary fence erected in the playground. Armed officers in respirators guard them to make sure that no terrorists escape.

Monday, 8:51 p.m.: Preliminary analysis carried out on-site by the hazmat team indicates that the white powder found at the campground is a complex mixture of biologically-active materials, including complex proteins, starches, sugars, and many other unidentified substances. In addition, a scrap of paper is found. It bears the single word "Snickerdoodle", along with what appears to be a coded set of instructions written in German. The authorities immediately suspect a resurgence of the Baader-Meinhof "Rote Armee Fraktion", thought to have been defunct since 1993.

Tuesday, 2:17 a.m.: Several black helicopters descend from the sky, absorb all campers and staff, including the part-time janitor, Bob, despite his claims that he was only there to clean the toilets, and vanish into the overhead darkness. By the next day everyone is safely in isolation cells inside several undisclosed democracy friendly countries, except for recurring rounds of enhanced interrogation. Surprisingly, none of the terrorists confesses to the plot, or even admits that there is one, which causes the interrogation to escalate to super-double-plus enhancification.

Thursday, 6:02 a.m.: Christina, returning to the campground for another morning jog, discovers that it is no longer there. Not only that, but there is no longer a road leading to the campground. Puzzled, she pulls her car over and looks around. Nothing. Just the forest and a huge pile of brush covering what used to be the turnoff. Above and to her right, high in a tree, she sees two magpies. They almost seem to be laughing about something.

Schneckennudeln (Snickerdoodle) Terrorist Campground Cookies


  • butter: 1 cup
  • sugar: 1.5 cups
  • eggs: 2
  • flour: 2.75 cups
  • cream of tartar: 2 teaspoons
  • baking soda: 1 teaspoon
  • salt: 0.25 teaspoon


  • sugar: 1 cup
  • ground cinnamon: 1 tablespoon


  • Mix wet ingredients.
  • Stir in dry ingredients.
  • Chill, form into balls, then roll in cinnamon and sugar dust.
  • Bake: 8-10 minutes on greased cookie sheet at 400°F.

More: 2 crows plus a bag of flour equals a hazmat scene.


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See if that helps.
Me? Headed out for cookies and milk.