Archive for the ‘Brunty the butler’ Category

Grab your partner, watch that gourd

Thursday, October 6th, 2011

By Tiber 

Evidently, there was a dance over in the servants’ hall.

Cook was making trips in and out, unloading groceries, and she inadvertently locked the kitchen door. The luggage entrance was locked as well.

Cook didn’t want to come over and use any of the doors in the main house because, like everybody else on staff, she’s trying to avoid Dad in case he ends up having to fire people and remembers who’s on the payroll.

So she started yelling through the closed servant’s hall window, why the hell wouldn’t some slacker unlock the damned door, knowing full well that the fault was all hers.

Brunty, the butler, looked outside. and with typical Brunty logic, decided that Cook, corkscrewing her body in a dervish fit of fury, was actually dancing.

So he started clapping along to the “beat” of Cook’s outdoor contortions. and when his delighted wife saw him so animated for a change, she grabbed him and they started to whirl around the room. 

Two of the security guys, who had thought they’d heard someone yelling but now found only a happy couple dancing, started to dance with two of the maids.

The party ended abruptly,  however, when a pumpkin was suddenly thrown through the window, accompanied by arcs of breaking glass.

Cook can’t dance but she sure can throw.

Rockabye, SWAT Team

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

By Tiber 

Nobody ever goes up to the old nursemaid’s room at the very end of the second floor of the staff wing.

It’s past even what used to be the day nursery and the night nursery. Clearly, the Victorians, who built this house, felt that children not only shouldn’t be heard, they basically should be kept in another city.

Dad used to try to leave us over there but, too bad for him, we kept finding our way back.

Anyway, the security guys heard noises in the room and since things are usually pretty quiet around here, they were thrilled to be able to conduct a raid.

It turned out it was just Brunty, the butler, trying to find a new place to sleep.

His wife, Mrs. Brunty, the housekeeper, doesn’t mind anybody else drinking but she was so furious when her husband got drunk that she’d thrown him out of their bedroom.

That alone would probably have sobered Brunty up again. But since his one lapse also caused what looked like King Kong’s Killer Commandos to practically parachute in onto his head has definitely done it.

So the Bruntys are happily back together. It’s only the security guys who are a little down because it probably will be awhile before they can kick in another door.

Dad understands and he’s promised that when he gets back on his feet again financially, he’ll throw in a few doors for free and the guys can basically turn them into toothpicks.

Butler down

Friday, May 6th, 2011

By Tiber

Brunty, my parents’ butler, went missing today.

We’d had some people over last night and they had wanted to try to negotiate the big maze we have out in back.

Dad always gives guests a bottle of wine and a corkscrew so they can at least have a drink if they get lost. But these guests got out of the maze in record time and they left the bottle of wine behind.

When Brunty went into the maze this morning to retrieve the glasses, he’d found the wine and decided to drink it himself.

“Didn’t want it to spoil, sir,” he’d told Dad. (Since unopened wine evidently has the same shelf-life as milk).

We finally found Brunty this afternoon because we could hear him, holed up in the maze and yelling wildly at the birds. Obviously, he’d been passed out.

Under the impression that Hitchcock’s film, “The Birds” was a documentary, Brunty kept insisting that the birds screaming today meant they were preparing for a big attack.

Dad said actually the birds weren’t “screaming” so much as “chirping”  and maybe Brunty just had a hangover instead.

Mrs. Brunty, the housekeeper, (as well as Brunty’s wife) was mortified by the whole thing. She apologized to Dad and said that at least for today, her husband probably wouldn’t be “on his game.”

I think we can manage. For all anyone can see, Brunty’s “game” pretty much consists of  just sitting around and occasionally polishing something.

My perfume? It’s Chanel #Pie

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011


By Tiber

Once again, Cook is worried about Dad cutting back on expenses and firing her.

So she’s taken up “wafting” again. She did this before with peach cobbler but this time, it was cherry pie.

She stuck a freshly-baked, hot cherry pie on one of Mrs. Brunty, the housekeeper’s carts and then gave Brunty, the butler, one of her little electric hand fans.

Then she told him to follow Dad around as closely as possible and keep wafting that prized dessert smell in his direction.

Cook thinks this will keep her from being let go when the truth is, Dad already loves her pies so much that if it comes to cutting back, he’ll be much more likely to fire his children first.

Anyway, Dad quickly figured out the pie ruse but he didn’t care.

Brunty later said that Dad ended up following the cart even more than Brunty was following him.

This was true, though it wasn’t all because of the pie. Mom’s still mad at Dad and since she’s the only person on the planet who can scare him, it’s been a lot easier for him to maneuver down the hallways since he could duck-walk behind a large cart.

When butlers strike

Sunday, January 9th, 2011

By Tiber

My parents’ butler, Brunty, has been on strike all week. The problem is, nobody knew it.

Mom and Dad hadn’t had any visitors this week so Brunty wasn’t announcing any callers.  As you know, since Brunty’s getting a little older and the house isn’t getting any smaller, he can never remember who was at the door so he’ll just say anybody.

Last week, though, Brunty located Dad and told him, “Nostradamus is here to see you, sir.”

Then, Dad didn’t want to go to the door at all.  Mom said he was being an idiot.

“Am I, Gwen? It’s all good fun to read about Nostradamus but do you really want him coming to your home and giving you predictions about yourself?!?”

“It’s not Nostradamus!!!”

“You know we have ghosts here, Gwen, and they certainly could have called him!”

Of course, it wasn’t the ghost of Nostradamus. It was just Dad’s business associate, Joyce Dodd-Thomas, so at least that time, except for the gender, Brunty had been sort of close.

Anyway, Mom also had a visitor come to dinner last week and that time, Brunty decided that, because the man was bald, he must be related to Benito Mussolini. Because of this, when Brunty served the salad, he “accidentally” dropped the salad tongs, tongs down, into the poor guy’s crotch.

Mom immediately had Gabby start serving instead and Brunty went back to sitting in his hall chair. Without anyone to announce or serve this week, Brunty has been sitting in his hall chair for 16 hours a day instead of his usual 15 and 1/2 and no one realized that he was actually on strike.

Evidently, he was striking so Dad won’t fire any of the staff in this bad economy, even though Dad has made it clear that he’s doing everything he can to avoid this.

I just came from the billiards room and Brunty is still sitting in the hall. For all I know, he now may be on strike to save endangered pumas. I think we’re going to have to get him a sign.

Going beddie bye-bye

Sunday, December 5th, 2010


By Tiber

My parents have some guests staying here this week. It’s a couple they really like, so Dad thought it would be nice to put them up in one of the most elaborate guest rooms. This one has a big antique bed in it that, once upon a time, belonged to a prince.

The bed is capped by a very large and heavy wooden canopy dome. I don’t know how long it’s been since anybody checked the canopy attachments. I guess  the answer now would be, “too long” – since the man and woman were lying in the bed when the whole canopy fell down on top of them.

Fortunately, the dome is so big, at least there was some air trapped under there. Unfortunately, the dome is so big, they couldn’t get out from under it.

Finally, when the two didn’t come down to dinner, a search party was sent up and they were retrieved.

Since Brunty, the butler, wanders all over the place, Dad later asked him if he hadn’t heard any commotion coming from that room.

“Yes, sir. I did hear two people yelling.”

“Yelling?!? Brunty! Why didn’t you do something?!?”

Brunty pulled himself up to his most dignified height and replied.

“Because, sir, while the gentleman was shouting out, ‘Hello! Hello!,’ his lady was then shouting, ‘In HERE! In HERE!!!’ I could only assume that, though the gentleman had clearly lost his way in his lovemaking, he certainly didn’t want me popping in there and giving him better directions.”

The Shining

Saturday, October 23rd, 2010

By Tiber

Dad’s butler, Brunty, along with everybody else who works for Dad, continues to do double duty around here to keep from being fired in the bad economy. And Brunty, for some reason, has decided that one of the chores sure to keep him employed is polishing pretty much anything “polishable” he can find.

Dad caught him sitting outside his study, carefully shining all of the loose coins Dad keeps in a bowl by the door.

“Uh, Brunty, you really don’t have to do that, you know.”

“I just want to be of service, sir. If you’d prefer, I’d be happy to squeeze out your hemorrhoid cream for you. You just tell me how much and where.”

Mom, who had been heading towards Dad’s office, never missed a step as she reversed course and disappeared down the other hall.

Dad sighed.

“Uh…just keep on polishing those coins, Brunty.”

“Always glad to help, sir.”

It was Duncan, in the maze, with the mallet……..When butlers are beaned, you’re Clueless

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

By Tiber

We have  a big hedge maze out behind the house. You can legitimately get lost in it, which is why we often give people glasses and a bottle of wine. Might as well enjoy yourself while you’re waiting to be rescued. Of course, adding liquor to the mix, who knows what’s gone on behind those high “shrubbies,” as our gardener, Nestor, persists in calling them.

Some of my parents’ oldest friends, who know their way out of the maze, took some newer friends in for a look last night. And when they came back to the house, they said, “You’re getting us in the mood to play ‘Clue’ tonight, aren’t you?” – which made no sense to my parents.

It turned out they were referring to “who killed the butler, in the maze, with the croquet mallet.” Eventually, this was determined not to be “Clue” at all but instead, Brunty, our real butler, dead in the maze, from a croquet mallet. Thankfully, it turned out that Brunty was only beaned, in the maze, from a croquet mallet.

He’d been out there clearing away glasses from the night before, when a croquet mallet came flying over from the nearby croquet pitch and hit him on the head. He seems fine now but really, considering how he is normally, how can we be sure?

Plus, would the mallet-thrower strike again? No one knew who it was. Until captured, we were advised to just avoid the maze entirely.

Finally, it was discovered that our maid, Taffy, had seen my brother, Duncan, walking towards the croquet pitch last night, where she had then heard the simple sound of croquet balls hitting each other.

Taffy, however, in her usual special way, had decided that what she’d really heard was Duncan throwing artificial legs onto a pile to light them on fire. So she had moved along, not wanting to interrupt his mission.

Later, Duncan, who of course had only been playing croquet, had gotten frustrated with his game, and had thrown his mallet over the hedge where it ended up hitting Brunty in the maze. So the mystery was solved – except for the Taffy part.

I noticed something long ago. Other people don’t seem to live in houses like ours, where residents will, with only an ounce of information, leap to conclusions like this one where, it was believed that a family member, after having had a long and particularly busy day, had decided that out of all the ways in the world to chill, the best choice would be to construct an artificial leg pyre in the dead of night on a croquet pitch.

There is a bright side, I guess. The members of our household who so often book non-stop flights to Crazy Town are happy there.

Once Taffy had “figured out” what Duncan was doing, she had just nodded at his having his own enjoyable time and serenely went off to bed.