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Malex Minute 215

Well, what’s this? The “Gnomes of Christmas Past” burst in on our heroes during a recording of the Malex Minute! Who are they and what do they want? There’s only one way to find out! (Listen!)

Episode Audio

Alex's Thoughts

So classic! The old, “They’re in the studio and something happens!” formula. It’s been a long time since we played that card. But, since last episode was so epic in size and scope, we thought we would take it easy for a week.

Don’t worry, next week will be epic again. As epic as the day is long. Epic, even, like a banshee.

But this week, we have the Gnomes of Christmas Past. Delightful! These unbalanced little critters have an economic plan that’s so chock full of economy, it supersedes all other considerations! At least, that’s if you believe their story.

Unfortunately, their credibility seems to be damaged, in part, because they’ve taken a bit too much of their own medicine.

Listen for yourself! It’s a barrel of laughs.

I enjoyed writing this. I enjoyed recording it. I especially enjoyed working with my siblings and doing silly voices. I did not, however, enjoy driving back into town at 3AM, wondering if I was really awake enough to be behind the wheel.

Hopefully, future episodes will be marginally less life-threatening.


—Alex Markley

“Oh yeah, I still need to pack.”


~~ Introduction

Malex: Hey everybody! Welcome to the Malex Minute! I’m Malex, and I’m hosting the show! In the studio with me is Linus the Laptop and Snufflefungus the cheerful fuzzball!

Snufflefungus: Hi everybody!

Linus: You’re despicable!

Malex: Are you talking to me?

Linus: Yes! You’re a terrible human being!

Malex: Do you realize I’m trying to do a show?

Snufflefungus: I realize!

Linus: Malex, you took my automaton away. I don’t know how you can expect me to help you with your stupid show that nobody listens to!

Malex: Linus, your little Scone Heist made the front page.

Linus: I’m a hero to the downtrodden!

Malex: I had to pay for your crimes myself to avoid having charges pressed against the lot of us!

Linus: It’s not my fault the law sided with the coffee shop!

Snufflefungus: Yes it is! You broke their store in half!

Malex: Snufflefungus, I’m so glad to hear that – despite your many years hanging out with Linus – you still know right from wrong.

Snufflefungus: (Confused.) What? I know right is this direction, and left is that direction, but what direction is wrong?!

Malex: Most of them are, Snuffy. Most of them are.

Linus: Can we get back to me now? I’m like the Robin Hood of scones!

Malex: Which poor people did you share the scones with, again?

Linus: None! I needed the scones to power my heroic deeds!

Malex: You’re a laptop!

Linus: Even a laptop needs to recover his strength after a long day of crushing buildings!

Malex: Linus, I’m so glad we’ve been friends for so long. Without our long history together I would have to assume you were broken.

Snufflefungus: What about me, Malex?

Malex: Aw, Snuffy, I’m glad we’re friends too.

Snufflefungus: Yay!

Gnome A: Hey you!

Malex: Good grief, I’m hallucinating.

Linus: (Disparaging.) Why would you assume that?

Gnome B: We just want a word with you, then we’ll be on our way.

Snufflefungus: They’re so cute!

Gnome A: No need for personal insults now, buddy! We’ll beat you in the face if we have to!

Malex: Who are you and what do you want?

Gnome B: We are the Gnomes of Christmas Past.

Linus: (Cutting.) You’re late.

Gnome A: (Freaks out.) I told you!

Gnome B: What do you want me to say?

Gnome A: You kept insisting that it was July when it was clearly August! You flipped the calendar back again, and again, and again until neither one of us knew which end was up!

Gnome B: I said I was sorry. You don’t have to shout.

Gnome A: But we’re late now, aren’t we?! How sorry do you have to be to fix that?!

Snufflefungus: Guys, Christmas is a time of cheer! Please don’t fight!

Gnome B: He’s right, you know.

Gnome A: Don’t act like you’re in the right here!

Malex: (Clears throat.) Guys, can you please get to a point and clear out? We’re trying to do a show here.

Gnome B: We are like the Ghosts of Christmas from Dickens, but instead of spiritual redemption, we’re all about the economy.

Gnome A: Yeah! This is 2010, man! Nobody cares about spiritual stuff anymore. The economy is where it’s at now!

Malex: (Incredulous.) Really.

Gnome B: So, how many Christmas purchases do you have racked up on credit cards?

Gnome A: It’s probably a lot!

Malex: Not really any.

Snufflefungus: Malex tries to be frugal!

Linus: That’s just because he doesn’t have any friends to buy presents for!

Gnome B: Uh oh, this is bad.

Gnome A: What do you mean you don’t have any Christmas purchases on credit cards?!

Malex: I try to buy things after I’ve earned the money to pay for them.

Gnome A: What’s wrong with you? Isn’t this America?! Did we somehow accidentally travel to a third world country?

Gnome B: L– Let me handle this. Look guy, you’re really throwing us off here. We’re the Gnomes of Christmas Past. If you’re not still paying off past Christmas purchases, we have a problem.

Malex: Sorry, I don’t know what to tell you.

Snufflefungus: I’m still paying off past Christmas purchases! I got Malex Boardwalk and Park Place for Christmas last year!

Malex: I remember that. Snuffy, those are board game pieces. How are you still paying them off?

Snufflefungus: With my allowance! Linus sends me a bill every month!

Malex: Ah Linus, the hero of the people.

Linus: You’re sending me mixed signals. Your words are positive, but I sense disapproval in your tone.

Gnome A: These guys are all idiots! We need to go find somebody else to harass, quick! We’re already so late!

Malex: W– Wait a minute, I’m super curious now. You guys are the Gnomes of Christmas Past, right? What’s the story here?

Gnome B: Oh! It’s all about economic redemption!

Gnome A: Like the spiritual redemption in Dickens, but better!

Gnome B: See, we visit households all over the world and remind them of all the mistakes they’ve made during past Christmases!

Gnome A: People have a lot of debt!

Gnome B: Then, once we’ve got everybody good and depressed, the Gnomes of Christmas Present come along – right after Thanksgiving – to help make people feel better!

Malex: How do they do that?

Gnome B: By convincing them to buy more stuff! The more stuff you buy, the better you feel!

Gnome A: All that spending is great for the economy, too! Everybody wins!

Snufflefungus: This sounds bad. (Snuffy shudder.)

Malex: No kidding.

Linus: What about the Gnome of Christmas Future? How does he figure in to all of this?

Gnome A: We haven’t heard from him in ages.

Gnome B: Yeah, I think he’s dealing with a second Great Depression or something. It was kinda hard to tell what he was saying over the phone because he was crying pretty hard.

Linus: What a loser.

Malex: And that didn’t concern you at all? Honestly this sounds like a bad plan.

Gnome A: What do you know?! You don’t even have debt from massive spending!

Malex: Do you?

Gnome B: Oh, he totally does. (Cackles.)

Gnome A: Hey, shut up! I bought those wall hangings for you! Fascist.

Gnome B: Yeah? Well did I ask for those hideous things?! They’re not even the right color!

Gnome A: Well at least I tried to get you something nice! You bought me a gym membership! Way to send a signal!

Gnome B: Oh, did that come through?!

Gnome A: Loud and clear!

Gnome B: I can never tell! (Mocking.) Earth to Captain Tubbo, the wall hangings are an affront to the décor!

Gnome A: I hate you! I hate you and the faerie dust you rode in on!

Malex: Guys! For crying out loud. Have you ever even read Dickens’ A Christmas Carol?

Gnome B: Not really.

Malex: All those “outdated” notions of spiritual redemption might actually do you some good.

Gnome A: Whatever dude, why should we listen to you? You’re like the Scrooge of the entire economy.

Malex: That’s it! Get out of my studio!

Gnome B: Fine!

Snufflefungus: And stop ruining the world!

Linus: I like those guys. I think I’m going to use credit cards for everything from now on! It can only be better for my hero image if I’m saving the economy with every purchase!

Malex: Well everybody, it looks like we’re out of time this week. Thanks so much for listening, and we hope you’ll join us again next week for another fun romp in the dark forest of madness!

Snufflefungus: (Cheerful.) Bye!

~~ End


Producer and Director: Alex Markley

Writers: Alex Markley

Voices: Alex, Gabriel, & Peter Markley

Post-processing director: Susie Markley

Illustration: Peter Markley

Release manager: Peter Markley

Recording assistance: Susie Markley

Thanks to everyone for their help and support. :)

Media Downloads

Episode Audio4.16 MB Download Now - 4.16 MB Listen Now - Episode Audio
Episode Illustration218.64 KB Download Now - 218.64 KB View Now - Episode Illustration



I think those gnomes were extremely confused...credit cad debt is what got us into the mess...wracking up more debt is not gonna get us out of it!

Anyways, the minute was great you guys! Absolutely fabulous! Good job :)

God gave us music, that we might pray without words


I love the little gnome voices! I just want to cuddle them! Oh man, I had to go back a couple of times and listen again because I was laughing so hard I missed something. And the illustration is priceless. The gnomes are so cute and so menacing at the same time. X-D Great work all around, guys!

Everything looks perfect from far away.

So funny!

Gnome A: I hate you! I hate you and the faerie dust you rode in on!

This is the funniest line EVER! Probably because it follows on the heels of that rapid-fire argument, which is hilarious, btw. The voices are an absolute scream! I'll need to listen to this over and over, I'm sure.

Linus' petulance about being deprived of his automaton is very funny. Poor Linus!

I suspect this episode is going to be quoted like a banshee.

We should take our comfort from God's word, not from the circumstances of our lives.

oh wow

what the gnomes are really doing is making the economy worse. i can see why the gnome of Christmas future was so sad so many people will be put further into debt. Poor Malex and Snuffy


Excellent work. I like the gnomes...They make for witty conversation.

I didn't hear any Susie in this one...

Praise the Lord! Hallelu!

I don't care what the devil's gonna do!

The Word and faith is my sword and shield

And Jesus is Lord of the way I feel!

Susie Markley's picture

gnnb94 said: I didn't hear

gnnb94 said:

I didn't hear any Susie in this one...

Yep. After loosing my voice in sickness, ripping it up the day before recording Bucking Sailboat dubbing, and recording an episode right before for over 3 hours, poor sick Mara was written out. And not one bit disappointed to be so.

But ah, worry not. Mara is not missing from our Christmas Eve Special, sick as she is. ;)

#HowManyLicksDoesItTake to change a lightbulb?

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