Once upon a time, Etwas the Elf was running through the forests of grass, under the canopies of clover and around the stems of tall flowers when she came upon a cabbage patch. It looked like a perfect place to play and Etwas vaulted the young cabbages, did somersaults at their peaks and leapt from each in its turn to the next, in its sequence.
"Oof!" said one of the cabbages as the elf alit upon it.
"Why, howdy, Ms. Cabbage!" replied Etwas. "I didn't know you could talk!"
"Well the thingamajig is stuck in my dingabob."
"Oh," said Etwas, sympathetically. "I'm sorry. Are my feet in the way?"
"No, no," the cabbage replied. "You have to pull your stem out."
"My tail?" Etwas asked. "That would be funny, but I don't have a tail. I sometimes wish for a tail. I envy those with tails sometimes. But then I just yank 'em."
"That's silly," answered the cabbage. "Why, one time my old papa, his stem got stuck and sealed just like that. He huffed about and complained but my old aunt Trudi came and gave it a good tug and boy did she clean his bowl. I think she must have used spider spit or something because that was the cleanest sticky cup or the stickiest clean cup you ever saw. Hardly any room for tobacco or tea, I tell you..."
Etwas tumbled down the side of the cabbage and onto her feet in the soil to look at the stem and see if she could sort out the problem. Digging her way under the bottom leaves, she found the trunk of the cabbage looking dewy and thick and well within specifications. "Well, ok, then," Etwas interrupted. "Have a great day! I hope your dingabob gets free!"
And the little Elf resumed her play and the two aphids in their room inside the cabbage head continued to tell stories and fix their pipes.
And ever since then, there's been a distinction between a long story and a pipe cleaner.