Read Daniel Braum’s story Mystic Tryst at Farrgo’s Wainscot #8.

Jonathan Wood’s story “Notes on the Dissection of an Imaginary Beetle” from Electric Velocipede 15/16 is available online.

Edd Vick’s latest story, “The Corsair and the Lady” may be found in Talebones #37.

Angela Slatter’s story ‘Frozen’ will appear in the December 09 issue of Doorways Magazine, and ‘The Girl with No Hands’ will appear in the next issue of Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet.

From the Book of Monsters

by Daniel Braum

Page 2169

The Indonesian Orange Smoke Tang

(also known as Bali Hai Flying Clove Fish)

The Indonesian Smoke Tang is not a fish at all, though in its adult form it manifests in a smoky fish like shape akin to the ones found on the packaging of Bali Hai clove cigarettes a fine Turkish tobacco made by Djarum an Indonesian company.

Smoke Tangs, particularly the orange variety, have been regularly and reliably sighted in Southeast Asia since the mid 1800’s. Reported sightings did not begin in the United States until the 1950’s with the popularity of clove cigarettes among the beatnik culture who called the Orange Smoke Tangs, Flying Clove Fish, because of the way the creatures glided through the air like a flying fish before disappearing back into the aether.

With the recent popularity of the Bali Hai brand, particularly in Cancun, a new generation has come to call these creatures the Bali Hai Flying Clove Fish. Whether this has anything to do with the brightly colored fish on the package is a matter of speculation.


Update 2009

In late 2009, President of the United States Barak Obama signed a tobacco bill into law that effectively banned clove cigarettes in the United States.

While the rationale for the bill was public health and safety, mainly curbing the marketing of cigarettes, such as popular clove cigarette brands like Bali Hai to teens, the real reason likely has more to do with the new found dangers of the Indonesian Smoke Tang. While its adult form is a benign, pleasant ethereal creature that glides through the air in a graceful lifespan shorter than any butterfly, its larval form has been found to be very dangerous.

The mite size larva live in the cloved tobacco and enter the human body through the mouth of the smoker. Filters are not a deterrent to the creatures. Once in the body the larva cause the smoker to crave and often ingest large amounts of alcohol. In several reported instances the alcohol was various blends of sake and sweet tea alcohol. Whether this is statistically significant is yet unclear. Also the smokers crave more clove cigarettes and inject more larva, thus creating a vicious circle. How the Smoke Fish reproduce is yet unclear, as is the effectiveness of the Obama administration’s smoke ban.

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