“Weohryant University” (XXVI) – How 101

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Welcome, said Pablo, to “How 101.” Today’s question is, “How are you?”
I’m fine, said Chelsea.
So am I, said Morton.
Me too, said Emma Lou.
I’m a little thirsty, said Frank.
So am I, said Glouster.
Now that you mention it, said Morton, I’m a little hungry.
So am I, said Frank.
I’ve got an itch behind my left ear, said Chelsea.
My right front paw is a little sore, said Emma Lou.
Do you think my tail is too short? said Morton.
My feet are too big, said Glouster.
Your tail is longer than mine, said Chelsea.
My quills aren’t very shiny, said Emma Lou.
My feathers are shiny, said Frank, but my beak is too sharp.
I wish I could swim, said Morton.
I wish I could fly, said Chelsea.
I sink like a stone, said Morton.
I float, said Emma Lou, even when I try to dive.
I think I have a sty, said Frank, in my left eye.
My paw is sore, said Emma Lou.
My back is stiff, said Morton.
One of my feathers is split, said Frank.
My left ear is bothering me, said Chelsea.
I suppose we’re all one day closer to death, said Glouster, than we were yesterday.
Yes, said Emma Lou, that’s true.
What was the question? said Morton.
The question, said Glouster, was “How are you?”
I’m fine, said Morton.
So am I, said Chelsea.
Me too, said Emma Lou.
I’m a little thirsty, said Frank.
So am I, said Glouster.

“Weohryant University” (XXV) – Who 101

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Welcome to “Who 101,” said Harlan. Today’s question is “Who’s responsible?”
Responsible for what? said Morton.
I didn’t do it, said Emma Lou.
Neither did I, said Frank.
“Responsible,” said Glouster, means “being the cause or explanation; able to answer for one’s conduct and obligations; able to choose between right and wrong;” and, “marked by accountability.”
It’s not always easy to choose between right and wrong, said Chelsea.
Why not? said Frank.
Because what’s wrong for me, said Chelsea, may be right for someone else.
Like what? said Morton.
Like the color green, said Chelsea.
The color green? said Frank.
Yes, said Chelsea, the color green looks terrible on me, but it might look lovely on someone else.
Sometimes it’s also difficult, said Emma Lou, to answer for your conduct.
What conduct? said Frank.
Instinctive conduct, said Emma Lou. How can you answer for actions that are performed without thinking?
That’s true, said Morton, when I see a pumpkin pie, I can’t be held responsible for my conduct.
Or a shiny worm, said Frank.
Or a minnow, said Glouster.
Is there anything for which we can be held responsible? said Chelsea.
We can be held responsible for how we treat our friends, said Frank.
What about our enemies? said Chelsea.
Jesus, said Glouster, said we should love our enemies.
He didn’t mean cats, said Frank.
What if our enemies want to hurt us? said Chelsea.
An “enemy,” said Glouster, is “someone who is antagonistic to another, often seeking to injure, overthrow, or confound an opponent.”
You can love your enemy, said Emma Lou, without loving what they do.
Maybe you can convince them, said Chelsea, to act differently.
Yes, said Glouster, to act responsibly.
Even if that responsibility goes against their instincts? said Morton.
Maybe, said Emma Lou, responsibility can inspire us to alter our instincts so we can get along with others.
That, said Glouster, is called “social responsibility.”
“Social responsibility?” said Morton.
Yes, said Glouster, the responsibility that enables societies to exist, that enables individuals with different desires to live in harmony.
I like social responsibility, said Morton.
So do I, said Chelsea.
I don’t think cats are capable, said Frank, of social responsibility.

“Blurtso hears a whisper” (III)

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Harlan? said Blurtso. What? said Harlan. I’ve been thinking, said Blurtso, that we shouldn’t get a mongoose. Why not? said Harlan. Because, said Blurtso, it might make the snakes angry. You may be right, said Harlan. And the last thing we want, said Blurtso, is a barn full of angry snakes. That’s for sure, said Harlan. Right now, said Blurtso, they’re not bothering anyone, and they scarcely make a sound and always keep out of sight. That’s true, said Harlan. I’ve never even seen one, said Blurtso. Neither have I, said Harlan. I wonder if it’s sad to be a snake, said Blurtso, always keeping quiet and staying out of sight? I wouldn’t know, said Harlan, I’m never out of sight. Yes that’s true, said Blurtso, is it hard to be so noticeable? Sometimes, said Harlan. Do you ever wish you were a snake? said Blurtso. No, said Harlan. I guess snakes have it pretty good, said Blurtso, never being noticed. Yes, said Harlan, I suppose they do. Except, said Blurtso, that everyone hates them. Yes, said Harlan, there is that.