Once upon a time, there was a stringy brown woodchuck who desperately wanted to be big and powerful. His powerful urge to be powerful convinced him to buy a T-Rex costume on Amazon.com which he wore coursing through the woodchuck tunnels at night hoping to impress his neighbors. But, alas, they just scoffed.
The best the woodchuck could do was to find a real T-Rex to hang out with. That way, he knew he could feel power by association, the next best thing to having real power himself.
And so it was that the woodchuck hooked up with Big T-Rex, the thundering, spiky, mean as a not fed since last week junkyard dog Big T-Rex. Big T-Rex sized up the woodchuck and right away decided to call him Junior, Junior Woodchuck.
Big T-Rex and his little sidekick, Junior Woodchuck or JW, were forever together, inseparable it seemed. Big T-Rex would be seen strutting through the jungle and little JW would skitter behind him, ducking behind trees, running up alongside, and getting swatted back in place by Big T-Rex. “Stay where you belong, you meaningless little speck,” Big T-Rex would roar.
But when it helped Big T-Rex to have JW by his side, like when they were about to walk through the Happy Animal Commune, Big T-Rex would put his arm around the little rodent’s shoulders. “My BFF, my bud, my pal,” he’d croon as they strolled through the Commune, careful to keep time with the thrum of Kumbaya. “Let’s walk together, my friend, Kumbaya, never apart, my friend, Kumbaya, always happy, my friend, Kumbaya,” and so it went until they hit the outskirts of the Happy Animal Commune and then Big T-Rex would slap JW upside the head. “Don’t crowd me, squirt. Get back where you belong.”
Every day, Big T-Rex would head to the local meadow to eat all the grass and trees. Since his doctor advised against meat consumption, Big T-Rex had been trying to green his diet but it was hard work and he lacked enthusiasm. Why eat salad while a herd of wildebeest stood by, watching him eat their grass and trees, as motionless as statues and as uncomplaining. “Stupid wildebeest,” Big T-Rex grunted to JW while he mowed a lane of grass. “They’re just standing there dumb as sticks watching me eat all their food. “
“Maybe they’re afraid of you, Big T-Rex. After all, you are pretty massive and you have those really major teeth and all those spikes,” said little JW, cowering behind a raspberry bush that had mysteriously sprung up in the jungle.
“WHAT? Didn’t we just walk through Happy Animal Commune? Everyone knows I’m a swell, too swell guy.”
“If that’s so true, Big T-Rex,” said little Susie Wildebeest who had just moments before decided to stand up for her frozen in place brethren, “if that’s so true, maybe you could stop eating all of our grass. You can eat other animals, you know, and we’re kind of stuck with the fruits and nuts regime.”
“I’ll eat whatever I feel like eating, including you, you ugly, dim-witted horse-go-wrong.” Big T-Rex returned to his grazing, mowing another lane in the nearly denuded meadow. “Get out of my way.”
In one motion, the herd of wildebeests turned their collective heads and looked at Susie. Hmmmmm, they thought. Who does she think she is? She’s acting all uppity with the Big T-Rex. She’s going to get us all in trouble. They swayed and mooed. OhhhhhhhhNoooooooOhhhhhhhhNooooooOhhhhhhNoooooo.
Good grief, Susie thought. Why is my herd such a bunch of deer in the headlights? Knobs.
“Big T-Rex, I think it would be really nice if you would leave a little more grass for us. Can’t we all just get along?” By now, Susie Wildebeest knew that she was kind of on her own. The herd had stopped its swaying and mooing and had turned completely around. All Susie could see was a sea of asses. The tails were even still.
She appealed to Wise Old Lion who had been sunning himself on a rock, checking his manicure, and eyeing the ladies in the next pride over. “Could you please ask Big T-Rex to leave us a little more grass,” she asked the Wise Old Lion.
“Oh my, my, my, little girl, I just hate to intervene in community squabbles. I’d much rather y’all settle this amongst yourselves.” For reasons unbeknownst to anyone, Wise Old Lion had a very pronounced Southern accent. Some said he’d just recently moved from Atlanta but others thought it a bizarre affectation.
I’m screwed, Susie thought. I might as well go for it. Maybe once the herd sees my profile in courage, they’ll get their asses in gear and stand up to Big T-Rex.
“Listen Big T-Rex. I’ve really had it. You have got to stop eating all our grass.” Susie stuck her 34 AA chest out and summed the little teaspoon of courage that she’d been keeping in a jar on the top shelf of the upstairs attic of her head. “Right now! And I mean it! And if you don’t, if you don’t, well, if you don’t you can just, you can just, you can just BITE ME.”
And he did.
“Big T-Rex bit me! Wise Old Lion! T-Rex bit me,” cried little Susie.
“You need to develop a thicker skin, my dear,” drawled the Wise Old Lion, rolling over on his back so as to prevent tan lines on his ample belly and the other parts of him that were normally shaded.
“WHAT? What do you mean I have to develop a thicker skin? Big T-Rex just took a bite out of me!” Susie yelled, holding the two edges of the wound together with her front hooves, not an easy move for any four-legged animal much less a wildebeest which is somewhat off kilter to begin with.
“Well, you did tell him to bite you after all, didn’t you?” Wise Old Lion shrugged. Now the Southern drawl was really getting on her nerves.
“Oh my God, it was a figure of speech. You know, figurative, not literal, It’s a saying. It’s what people say on the street when they have just had it with somebody.” Susie looked for support from the asses that used be her herd-mates. Same asses, same tails.
Junior Woodchuck now was panting heavily and prancing around Big T-Rex. “He bit her! He bit her! Did you see that? He bit her! It was so DELICIOUS! His euphoria was approaching the very unseemly.
Big T-Rex cuffed him to the side. “Get out of my way, you rapturous little fleabag.” “Go eat some butterfly dung.”
And so it was that little Susie Wildebeest decided to leave her herd and catch a plane to New York to make an anti-bullying PSA. It was in New York at a meeting of the National Anti-Bullying Alliance (NABA) that she heard that Big T-Rex had moved on to the next meadow to eat all the grass while that herd stood motionless and the Wise Old Lion lolled in the sun and practiced his drawl, and the woodchuck waited impatiently for his next moment of ecstasy.
|deborah wenzler farr… on The End of Mean Charlie|
|Deb on The End of Mean Charlie|
|beth on The End of Mean Charlie|
|beth on Old Beautiful Debts|
|beth on Sisterhood|
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What happens here on Red's Wrap is all over the map. There is no single theme, no overarching gripe, no malady of my own or others that dominates. I write about what seems important or interesting at the moment and what aims me toward hope. I write stories, essays, poems - whatever fits the day and the mood. Nothing stays the same, here or anywhere. That's a good thing. Happiness. It's relative.
(c) Janice Wilberg and Red’s Wrap (2010-2023). Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author/owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Janice (Jan) Wilberg and Red’s Wrap with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.