Peter Coddle's Trip to New York

When I was a child, I was often stuck in my great great aunt's house on rainy summer afternoons with absolutely nothing to do but read the same two Mad magazines, engage my aunt and my great grandmother in a game of Carrom, or break out "The Game of Peter Coddle's Trip to New York." It was a form of what are now called "mad libs," in which we would read the story of Peter Coddle from the provided booklet, and pull little pieces of cardboard with a variety of adjectives and nouns on them to fill in the blanks. Hilarity ensued.

The game (which had no scoring or winning, only amusement) was published as early as 1888, and by various game publishers. This edition, published by Parker Brothers, may be one of the earliest.

Each time you refresh the page, the results will be different.

When you've had enough comical variations, return to Hoxsie.

There lived in the town of Wayback a young man by the name of Peter Coddle. He was as lazy as A Bustle and would no more work than A Small-mouthed Crockodile. So worthless was he that he was nicknamed by some Puss in Boots, by others A Glass Eye.

One day he was standing near An Old Gossip when word was brought him by An Insane Bedbug that an uncle had died and left him A Brick-bat.

The news coming so suddenly, very nearly gave him Blue Beard. He rallied from the surprise however, and began to speculate as to what he would do with A Hod of Coal. At first he thought he should buy A Large Blister and build A Basin of Turtle Soup four stories high. Then he thought he would start A Lump of Dough and exhibit A Bob-tailed Donkey and A Pinch of Snuff and again he would be A Long-eared Donkey

Peter thought it a great care to be A Water Butt. When he was poor he had little to think of except A Fainting Lobster or A Tin Soldier and little to do but work at A Game of 'My Wife and I' and eat A Dreadful Pain and A White Elephant three times a day. Now he was as nervous as A Warming Pan.

Peter was anxious to see A Red Wig so he took a steamer to New York, and put up at A Green-Eyed Pedagogue. The next morning he bought A Boodle Alderman and A Liver Pad, was measured for A Pickled Whale and encased his feet in A Base Ball. He next invested in A Lame Porpoise, and spent much time in selecting A Stewed Fiddle to give A Dynamiter.

When he was dressed in these, he looked like A Swarm of Bees, but Peter thought no one would take him for A Hot Sugar Pudding.

But he wandered about as curious as A Great Nuisance staring like A Lantern Post, and bumping against A Benighted Collier and stumbling over A Fish Dinner.

He felt ill at ease and would have preferred going to see A Short-hand Poem than wandering about like An Erroneous Idea. One day he made the acquaintance of The Book of Fate who volunteered to introduce him to I Know Not What and help him spend his money as fast as A Crazy Mule or a locomotive could run over An Emetic.

Peter was delighted and treated his friend to A Happy Dyspeptic and An Energetic Turtle. They went together to the opera, and Peter bought A Tipsy Tar to throw at the principal singer whom he said resembled A Sensation.

They next visited A Pair of Trousers and Peter confessed that he liked the play of A Bow-legged Rhinoceros better than Jack the Giant Killer. In this way he got rid of considerable money and A Dandy Dude but he was having as nice a time as Tom Thumb ever had, and he felt he would rather be Peter Coddle than Broiled Eggs.

Peter's friend secured him an invitation to Punch and Judy, for which it was necessary for him to have A Bucket of Swill. Dressed in this he looked exactly like A Genteel Tramp and imitated the manners of A Sea Serpent. As he was not versed in the usages of good society, he bought A Sore Head which he studied diligently.

He went to the party dressed in A Pair of Lace Lappets and having Ice Fried in Batter for a button-hole bouquet. In his efforts to be polite he made as many grimaces as A Poor Man's Plaster and contorted his body equal to A Dose of Salts or A Pandowdy.

He was introduced to a young lady as beautiful as A White Crow who wore A Bar of Soft Soap over A Hot Poker.

The two promenaded until the band played A Blue Monkey which set the ladies and gentlemen dancing around like A Leg of Veal.

Peter, being anxious to please, exerted himself with the energy of A Bob-tailed Rabbit and the grace of A Warm Poultice. He had no idea that he was acting like A Gridiron and making his partner feel as if she was dancing on Stewed Caterpillars.

After the party, as he was going back to his hotel he was mistaken for A Fierce Bull-Dog by a policeman, who arrested him and dragged him to the station, beating him with A Flannel Nightcap so that when he got there he looked like A Poke Bonnet; he was locked up for the night in a cell as cold as The Middle of Next Week.

The next morning he was taken before the court, fined $5.00 and costs for disturbing An Honest Lawyer.

This experience greatly frightened Peter, and as soon as he was released he ran as fast as A Motor Man for the depot and took the first train home, after an absence of four weeks.

If any of my readers should happen to go to Wayback they could doubtless find Peter Coddle as proprietor of the village store. He has grown as fat as A Quilted Petticoat and is as lazy as A Yellow Hen.

It is perhaps needless to say that Peter has never since visited New York.

Peter Coddle Directions Peter coddle word tiles