Mr Stanthorpe had made an incredible discovery.
“Egad!” he shouted.
His cat opened its eyes, blinked twice and went back to sleep.
Mr Stanthorpe sat peering through precariously perched half-glasses; in front of him was a picture of a corkscrew.
“Could it be so simple?” he muttered.
He leapt from his chair starting a cascade of books that didn’t stop until he was well out of the room. In the kitchen he ripped open the second draw and pulled out a wooden handled corkscrew. Then he raced to the bathroom and retrieved a slightly rusty razor blade.
“Needs to be sharper but should do the trick,” he murmured.
The rest of the evening was spent sharpening the razor and welding it to the end of the corkscrew. The resulting contraption looked lethal but Mr Stanthorpe seemed pleased.
“Wonderful!” he exclaimed.
The next morning he sprang out of bed and made his way to the local showgrounds. The 15th Annual Intergalactic Space Race was about to begin.
Two shiny space rockets stood gleaming in the morning sun. One rocket steamed and spluttered while the other stood in imposing silence.
Excitement levels grew as the start of the amazing race drew near. But excitement soon turned to disappointment; neither rocket made it through the stratosphere. The inventors left the stage looking dejected.
Mr Stanthorpe made his way to the microphone.
“It’s quite simple really,” Mr Stanthorpe stated. “I make a tiny hole in space with this,” he waved his gadget in the air, “and I’ll be sucked through the hole, straight to another world.”
The crowd of lab coated rocket scientists roared with laughter.
“Allow me to demonstrate.” The crowd fell silent as Mr Stanthorpe performed a complicated twisting movement with the device.
“Did it work?” he asked the judge.
“I’m afraid not Mr Stanthorpe,” the judge replied.
He looked befuzzled and replied, “Who is Mr Stanthorpe?”