Saturday, October 22, 2011
The Wolf: 5 Short Stories
The She-Wolf" by Saki (H. H. Munro) is from his collection of short stories "Beasts and Superbeasts" (1914). Saki (1870-1916) was a prolific Scottish author of the Edwardian era, often referred to as the master of short stories. The witty, satirical, and icy humour of H.H. Munro's stories has kept their power to shock nicely preserved. V.S. Pritchett said, "Saki writes like an enemy. Society has bored him to the point of murder. Our laughter is only a note or two short of a scream of fear." Creatures that essentially can never be tamed--felines and wolves preeminently--were Saki's favorites. In his popular novella "The Unbearable Bassington" (1912) the hero is a man named Tom Keriway, whose daredevil nature is summed up in the echoing phrase "a man that wolves have sniffed at."
Saki's "The Storyteller" (1910) pokes fun at children's literature. A cynical bachelor on a train tells a realistic story to 3 children about a good girl, but that did not make the wolf spare her. "Bertha was good, horribly good" starts the tale, then a wolf comes looking for some dinner. Since Bertha keeps her clothes nice and clean and white, he has no difficulty spotting her and instantly goes after her. She manages to hide in a bunch of flowers, and the wolf almost goes away, but then her medals for being good start clinking together, so he catches where she is and eats her. The 3 children say that it's one of the best stories they've ever heard. Their aunt, on the other hand, furiously proclaims that it's "improper", and that he's undone years of "careful teaching." "At any rate," the bachelor says, "I kept them quiet for ten minutes, which was more than you were able to do." He muses as he gets off the train that the kids are going to bother her for an improper story for the next few months.
© 1914 by Saki (Hector Hugh Munro)
Leonard Bilsiter was one of those people who have failed to find this world attractive or interesting, and who have sought compensation in an "unseen world" of their own experience or imagination - or invention. Children do that sort of thing successfully, but children are content to convince themselves, and do not vulgarize their beliefs by trying to convince other people. Leonard Bilsiter's beliefs were for "the few", that is to say, anyone who would listen to him.
His dabblings in the unseen might not have carried him beyond the customary platitudes of the drawing-room visionary if accident had not reinforced his stock-in- trade of mystical lore. In company with a friend, who was interested in a Ural mining concern, he had made a trip across Eastern Europe at a moment when the great Russian railway strike was developing from a threat to a reality; its outbreak caught him on the return journey, somewhere on the further side of Perm, and it was while waiting for a couple of days at a wayside station in a state of suspended locomotion that he made the acquaintance of a dealer in harness and metalware, who profitably whiled away the tedium of the long halt by initiating his English traveling companion in a fragmentary system of folk-lore that he had picked up from Trans-Baikal traders and natives. Leonard returned to his home circle garrulous about his Russian strike experiences, but oppressively reticent about certain dark mysteries, which he alluded to under the resounding title of Siberian Magic. The reticence wore off in a week or two under the influence of an entire lack of general curiosity, and Leonard began to make more detailed allusions to the enormous powers which this new esoteric force, to use his own description of it, conferred on the initiated few who knew how to wield it. His aunt, Cecilia Hoops, who loved sensation perhaps rather better than she loved the truth, gave him as clamorous an advertisement as anyone could wish for by retailing an account of how he had turned a vegetable marrow into a wood pigeon before her very eyes. As a manifestation of the possession of supernatural powers, the story was discounted in some quarters by the respect accorded to Mrs. Hoops' powers of imagination.
However divided opinion might be on the question of Leonard's status as a wonderworker or a charlatan, he certainly arrived at Mary Hampton's house-party with a reputation for pre-eminence in one or other of those professions, and he was not disposed to shun such publicity as might fall to his share. Esoteric forces and unusual powers figured largely in whatever conversation he or his aunt had a share in, and his own performances, past and potential, were the subject of mysterious hints and dark avowals.
"I wish you would turn me into a wolf, Mr. Bilsiter," said his hostess at luncheon the day after his arrival.
"My dear Mary," said Colonel Hampton, "I never knew you had a craving in that direction."
"A she-wolf, of course," continued Mrs. Hampton; it would be too confusing to change one's sex as well as one's species at a moment's notice."
"I don't think one should jest on these subjects," said Leonard.
"I'm not jesting, I'm quite serious, I assure you. Only don't do it to-day; we have only eight available bridge players, and it would break up one of our tables. To-morrow we shall be a larger party. To-morrow night, after dinner - "
"In our present imperfect understanding of these hidden forces I think one should approach them with humbleness rather than mockery," observed Leonard, with such severity that the subject was forthwith dropped.
Clovis Sangrail had sat unusually silent during the discussion on the possibilities of Siberian Magic; after lunch he side-tracked Lord Pabham into the comparative seclusion of the billiard-room and delivered himself of a searching question.__
"Have you such a thing as a she-wolf in your collection of wild animals? A she-wolf of moderately good temper?"
Lord Pabham considered. "There is Loiusa," he said, "a rather fine specimen of the timber-wolf. I got her two years ago in exchange for some Arctic foxes. Most of my animals get to be fairly tame before they've been with me very long; I think I can say Louisa has an angelic temper, as she-wolves go. Why do you ask?"
"I was wondering whether you would lend her to me for to-morrow night," said Clovis, with the careless solicitude of one who borrows a collar stud or a tennis racquet.
"Yes, wolves are nocturnal animals, so the late hours won't hurt her," said Clovis, with the air of one who has taken everything into consideration; "one of your men could bring her over from Pabham Park after dusk, and with a little help he ought to be able to smuggle her into the conservatory at the same moment that Mary Hampton makes an unobtrusive exit."
Lord Pabham stared at Clovis for a moment in pardonable bewilderment; then his face broke into a wrinkled network of laughter.
"Oh, that's your game, is it? You are going to do a little Siberian Magic on your own account. And is Mrs. Hampton willing to be a fellow-conspirator?"
"Mary is pledged to see me through with it, if you will guarantee Louisa's temper."
"I'll answer for Louisa," said Lord Pabham.
By the following day the house-party had swollen to larger proportions, and Bilsiter's instinct for self- advertisement expanded duly under the stimulant of an increased audience. At dinner that evening he held forth at length on the subject of unseen forces and untested powers, and his flow of impressive eloquence continued unabated while coffee was being served in the drawing- room preparatory to a general migration to the card-room.
His aunt ensured a respectful hearing for his utterances, but her sensation-loving soul hankered after something more dramatic than mere vocal demonstration.
"Won't you do something to CONVINCE them of your powers, Leonard?" she pleaded; "change something into another shape. He can, you know, if he only chooses to," she informed the company.
"Oh, do," said Mavis Pellington earnestly, and her request was echoed by nearly everyone present. Even those who were not open to conviction were perfectly willing to be entertained by an exhibition of amateur conjuring.
Leonard felt that something tangible was expected of him.
"Has anyone present," he asked, "got a three-penny bit or some small object of no particular value -?"
"You're surely not going to make coins disappear, or something primitive of that sort?" said Clovis contemptuously.
"I think it very unkind of you not to carry out my suggestion of turning me into a wolf," said Mary Hampton, as she crossed over to the conservatory to give her macaws their usual tribute from the dessert dishes.
"I have already warned you of the danger of treating these powers in a mocking spirit," said Leonard solemnly.
"I don't believe you can do it," laughed Mary provocatively from the conservatory; "I dare you to do it if you can. I defy you to turn me into a wolf."
As she said this she was lost to view behind a clump of azaleas.
"Mrs. Hampton - " began Leonard with increased solemnity, but he got no further. A breath of chill air seemed to rush across the room, and at the same time the macaws broke forth into ear-splitting screams.
"What on earth is the matter with those confounded birds, Mary?" exclaimed Colonel Hampton; at the same moment an even more piercing scream from Mavis Pellington stampeded the entire company from their seats. In various attitudes of helpless horror or instinctive defence they confronted the evil-looking grey beast that was peering at them from amid a setting of fern and azalea.
Mrs. Hoops was the first to recover from the general chaos of fright and bewilderment.
"Leonard!" she screamed shrilly to her nephew, "turn it back into Mrs. Hampton at once! It may fly at us at any moment. Turn it back!"
"I - I don't know how to," faltered Leonard, who looked more scared and horrified than anyone.__
"What!" shouted Colonel Hampton, "you've taken the abominable liberty of turning my wife into a wolf, and now you stand there calmly and say you can't turn her back again!"
To do strict justice to Leonard, calmness was not a distinguishing feature of his attitude at the moment.
"I assure you I didn't turn Mrs. Hampton into a wolf; nothing was farther from my intentions," he protested.
"Then where is she, and how came that animal into the conservatory?" demanded the Colonel.
"Of course we must accept your assurance that you didn't turn Mrs. Hampton into a wolf," said Clovis politely, "but you will agree that appearances are against you."
"Are we to have all these recriminations with that beast standing there ready to tear us to pieces?" wailed Mavis indignantly.
"Lord Pabham, you know a good deal about wild beasts - " suggested Colonel Hampton.
"The wild beasts that I have been accustomed to," said Lord Pabham, "have come with proper credentials from well-known dealers, or have been bred in my own menagerie. I've never before been confronted with an animal that walks unconcernedly out of an azalea bush, leaving a charming and popular hostess unaccounted for. As far as one can judge from OUTWARD characteristics," he continued, "it has the appearance of a well-grown female of the North American timber-wolf, a variety of the common species Canis Lupus."
"Oh, never mind its Latin name," screamed Mavis, as the beast came a step or two further into the room; "can't you entice it away with food, and shut it up where it can't do any harm?"
"If it is really Mrs. Hampton, who has just had a very good dinner, I don't suppose food will appeal to it very strongly," said Clovis.
"Leonard," beseeched Mrs. Hoops tearfully, "even if this is none of your doing can't you use your great powers to turn this dreadful beast into something harmless before it bites us all - a rabbit or something?"
"I don't suppose Colonel Hampton would care to have his wife turned into a succession of fancy animals as though we were playing a round game with her," interposed Clovis.
"I absolutely forbid it," thundered the Colonel.
"Most wolves that I've had anything to do with have been inordinately fond of sugar," said Lord Pabham; "if you like I'll try the effect on this one."
He took a piece of sugar from the saucer of his coffee cup and flung it to the expectant Louisa, who snapped it in mid-air. There was a sigh of relief from the company; a wolf that ate sugar when it might at the least have been employed in tearing macaws to pieces had already shed some of its terrors. The sigh deepened to a gasp of thanks-giving when Lord Pabham decoyed the animal out of the room by a pretended largesse of further sugar. There was an instant rush to the vacated conservatory. There was no trace of Mrs. Hampton except the plate containing the macaws' supper.
"The door is locked on the inside!" exclaimed Clovis, who had deftly turned the key as he affected to test it.
Everyone turned towards Bilsiter.
"If you haven't turned my wife into a wolf," said Colonel Hampton, "will you kindly explain where she has disappeared to, since she obviously could not have gone through a locked door? I will not press you for an explanation of how a North American timber-wolf suddenly appeared in the conservatory, but I think I have some right to inquire what has become of Mrs. Hampton."
Bilsiter's reiterated disclaimer was met with a general murmur of impatient disbelief.
"I refuse to stay another hour under this roof," declared Mavis Pellington.
"If our hostess has really vanished out of human form," said Mrs. Hoops, "none of the ladies of the party can very well remain. I absolutely decline to be chaperoned by a wolf!"
"It's a she-wolf," said Clovis soothingly.
The correct etiquette to be observed under the unusual circumstances received no further elucidation. The sudden entry of Mary Hampton deprived the discussion of its immediate interest.
"Some one has mesmerised me," she exclaimed crossly; "I found myself in the game larder, of all places, being fed with sugar by Lord Pabham. I hate being mesmerised, and the doctor has forbidden me to touch sugar."
The situation was explained to her, as far as it permitted of anything that could be called explanation.
"Then you REALLY did turn me into a wolf, Mr. Bilsiter?" she exclaimed excitedly.
But Leonard had burned the boat in which he might now have embarked on a sea of glory. He could only shake his head feebly.
"It was I who took that liberty," said Clovis; "you see, I happen to have lived for a couple of years in North-Eastern Russia, and I have more than a tourist's acquaintance with the magic craft of that region. One does not care to speak about these strange powers, but once in a way, when one hears a lot of nonsense being talked about them, one is tempted to show what Siberian magic can accomplish in the hands of someone who really understands it. I yielded to that temptation. May I have some brandy? the effort has left me rather faint."
If Leonard Bilsiter could at that moment have transformed Clovis into a cockroach and then have stepped on him he would gladly have performed both operations.
"The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs!" (© 1989) by Jon Scieszka is a 32 page children's book illustrated by Lane Smith. The big bad wolf has spent ten years in pig prison for the destruction of the three little pigs, and he tells his side of the story to prove his innocence. Alexander T. Wolf writes his own account of this infamous meeting, and insists that he was railroaded in the classic fairytale. After all, it was only an innocent sneeze (he had a bad cold), and all he wanted was to borrow a cup of sugar from one of the pigs. Why is he now the bad guy?
The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs!
© 1989 by Jon Scieszka
OMERSET PA (AP) -- A. Wolf took the stand today in his own defense. This shocked and stunned the media who predicted that he would not testify in the brutal double murder trial. A. Wolf is accused of killing (and eating) The First Little Pig, and The Second Little Pig. This criminal trial is expected to be followed by a civil trial to be brought by the surviving Third Little Pig. The case has been characterized as a media circus.
His testimony is transcribed below:
"Everybody knows the story of the Three Little Pigs. Or at least they think they do. But I'll let you in on a little secret. Nobody knows the real story, because nobody has ever heard my side of the story. I'm Alexander T. Wolf. You can call me Al. I don't know how this whole Big Bad Wolf thing got started, but it's all wrong. Maybe it's because of our diet. Hey, it's not my fault wolves eat cute little animals like bunnies and sheep and pigs. That's just the way we are. If cheeseburgers were cute, folks would probably think you were Big and Bad too. But like I was saying, the whole big bad wolf thing is all wrong. The real story is about a sneeze and a cup of sugar.
THIS IS THE REAL STORY.
Way back in Once Upon a Time time, I was making a birthday cake for my dear old granny. I had a terrible sneezing cold. I ran out of sugar. So I walked down the street to ask my neighbor for a cup of sugar. Now this neighbor was a pig. And he wasn't too bright either. He had built his whole house out of straw. Can you believe it? I mean who in his right mind would build a house of straw? So of course the minute I knocked on the door, it fell right in. I didn't want to just walk into someone else's house. So I called, "Little Pig, Little Pig, are you in?" No answer. I was just about to go home without the cup of sugar for my dear old granny's birthday cake.
That's when my nose started to itch. I felt a sneeze coming on. Well I huffed. And I snuffed. And I sneezed a great sneeze.
And you know what? The whole darn straw house fell down. And right in the middle of the pile of straw was the First Little Pig - dead as a doornail. He had been home the whole time. It seemed like a shame to leave a perfectly good ham dinner lying there in the straw. So I ate it up. Think of it as a cheeseburger just lying there. I was feeling a little better. But I still didn't have my cup of sugar . So I went to the next neighbor's house. This neighbor was the First Little Pig's brother. He was a little smarter, but not much. He has built his house of sticks. I rang the bell on the stick house. Nobody answered. I called, "Mr. Pig, Mr. Pig, are you in?" He yelled back."Go away wolf. You can't come in. I'm shaving the hairs on my shinny chin chin."
I had just grabbed the doorknob when I felt another sneeze coming on. I huffed. And I snuffed. And I tried to cover my mouth, but I sneezed a great sneeze.
And you are not going to believe this, but the guy's house fell down just like his brother's. When the dust cleared, there was the Second Little Pig - dead as a doornail. Wolf's honor. Now you know food will spoil if you just leave it out in the open. So I did the only thing there was to do. I had dinner again. Think of it as a second helping. I was getting awfully full. But my cold was feeling a little better. And I still didn't have that cup of sugar for my dear old granny's birthday cake. So I went to the next house. This guy was the First and Second Little Pig's brother. He must have been the brains of the family. He had built his house of bricks. I knocked on the brick house. No answer. I called, "Mr Pig, Mr. Pig, are you in?" And do you know what that rude little porker answered? "Get out of here, Wolf. Don't bother me again."
Talk about impolite! He probably had a whole sackful of sugar. And he wouldn't give me even one little cup for my dear sweet old granny's birthday cake. What a pig!
I was just about to go home and maybe make a nice birthday card instead of a cake, when I felt my cold coming on. I huffed And I snuffed. And I sneezed once again.
Then the Third Little Pig yelled, " And your old granny can sit on a pin!" Now I'm usually a pretty calm fellow. But when somebody talks about my granny like that, I go a Little crazy. When the cops drove up, of course I was trying to break down this Pig's door. And the whole time I was huffing and puffing and sneezing and making a real scene.
The rest as they say is history.
The news reporters found out about the two pigs I had for dinner. They figured a sick guy going to borrow a cup of sugar didn't sound very exciting.
So they jazzed up the story with all of that "Huff and puff and blow your house down.
And they made me the Big Bad Wolf. That's it The real story. I was framed.
Politically Correct Red Riding Hood
© 1994 by James Finn Garner
There once was a young person named Red Riding Hood who lived with her mother on the edge of a large wood. One day her mother asked her to take a basket of fresh fruit and mineral water to her grandmother's house--not because this was womyn's work, mind you, but because the deed was generous and helped engender a feeling of community. Furthermore, her grandmother was not sick, but rather was in full physical and mental health and was fully capable of taking care of herself as a mature adult.
So Red Riding Hood set off with her basket through the woods. Many people believed that the forest was a foreboding and dangerous place and never set foot in it. Red Riding Hood, however, was confident enough in her own budding sexuality that such obvious Freudian imagery did not intimidate her.
On the way to Grandma's house, Red Riding Hood was accosted by a wolf, who asked her what was in her basket. She replied, "Some healthful snacks for my grandmother, who is certainly capable of taking care of herself as a mature adult."
The wolf said, "You know, my dear, it isn't safe for a little girl to walk through these woods alone."
Red Riding Hood said, "I find your sexist remark offensive in the extreme, but I will ignore it because of your traditional status as an outcast from society, the stress of which has caused you to develop your own, entirely valid, worldview. Now, if you'll excuse me, I must be on my way."
Red Riding Hood walked on along the main path. But because his status outside society had freed him from slavish adherence to linear, Western-style thought, the wolf knew a quicker route to Grandma's house. He burst into the house and ate Grandma, an entirely valid course of action for a carnivore such as himself. Then, unhampered by rigid, traditionalist notions of what was masculine or feminine, he put on Grandma's nightclothes and crawled into bed.
Red Riding Hood entered the cottage and said, "Grandma, I have brought you some fat-free, sodium-free snacks to salute you in your role of a wise and nurturing matriarch."
From the bed, the wolf said softly, "Come closer, child, so that I might see you."
Red Riding Hood said, "Oh, I forgot you are as optically challenged as a bat. Grandma, what big eyes you have!"
"They have seen much, and forgiven much, my dear."
"Grandma, what a big nose you have--only relatively, of course, and certainly attractive in its own way."
"It has smelled much, and forgiven much, my dear."
"Grandma, what big teeth you have!"
The wolf said, "I am happy with who I am and what I am," and leaped out of the bed. He grabbed Red Riding Hood in his claws, intent on devouring her. Red Riding Hood screamed, not out of alarm at the wolf's apparent tendency toward cross-dressing, but because of his willful invasion of her personal space.
Her screams were heard by a passing woodchopper-person (or log-fuel technician, as he preferred to be called). When he burst into the cottage, he saw the melee and tried to intervene. But as he raised his axe, Red Riding Hood and the wolf both stopped.
"And just what do you think you're doing?" asked Red Riding Hood.
The woodchopper-person blinked and tried to answer, but no words came to him.
"Bursting in here like a Neanderthal, trusting your weapon to do your thinking for you!" she exclaimed. "Sexist! Speciesist! How dare you assume that womyn and wolves can't solve their own problems without a man's help!"
When she heard Red Riding Hood's impassioned speech, Grandma jumped out of the wolf's mouth, seized the woodchopper-person's axe, and cut his head off. After this ordeal, Red Riding Hood, Grandma, and the wolf felt a certain commonality of purpose. They decided to set up an alternative household based on mutual respect and cooperation, and they lived together in the woods happily ever after.
The Big Bad Wolf caught up with the three pigs and cornered them. Helpless, the three pigs said, "Sigh, its alright. We don't want to run anymore. Do what you want to us." And the Big Bad Wolf said, while panting, "OK, now tell me where is Little Red Riding Hood?"
Little Red Riding Hood is skipping down the road when she sees the Big Bad Wolf crouched down behind a log.
"My, what big eyes you have, Mr. Wolf," says Little Red Riding Hood.
The surprised wolf jumps up and runs away.
Further down the road Little Red Riding Hood sees the wolf again; this time he is crouched behind a tree stump.
"My, what big ears you have Mr. Wolf," says Little Red Riding Hood.
Again the foiled wolf jumps up and runs away.
About 2 miles down the road, Little Red Riding Hood sees the wolf again, this time crouched down behind a road sign.
"My, what big teeth you have Mr. Wolf," taunts Little Red Riding Hood.
With that the Big Bad Wolf jumps up and screams, "Will you get lost? I'm trying to take a dump!"
"The Wolf’s Side" (The truth about Little Red Riding Hood) (© 1998) by Cheryl Henry Hodgetts, aka Laurie Foston, is a short story posted on the internet by the American science fiction writer. Supposedly it is not for children or impressionable adults to read. This cute variation on the classic fairy tale is reminiscent of "The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig" by Eugene Trivizas, and helps balance the defamation of wolves by the original.
The Wolf's Side
(The truth about Little Red Riding Hood)
Not for children or impressionable adults to read!
© 1998 by Cheryl Henry Hodgetts, aka Laurie Foston
They call me the big bad wolf. They have been calling me that forever, since that meanie, "Little Red Riding Hood", and her grandmother told a story about me that was not true. But, as the old saying goes, "What goes around, comes around!"
I don't have any reason to tell you a lie. I’m a good wolf.
One beautiful spring day while I was lying in a bed of wild flowers, safely guarding some nearby sheep when I heard a voice call to me.
"Good morning, Wolf!"
I turned my head in the direction of the voice and saw Little Red Riding Hood standing close by holding a basket on her arm. She was covering her face with her hood. I didn't know why she was doing that then, but now I realize she was just trying to hide the smirk on her face.
"Good morning!' I answered. I was honestly glad to see her. I picked a quick bouquet of flowers and put them between my fangs. Then I trotted over to her and dropped them into her basket. I had only the best of intentions.
"Where might you be headed today?" I asked, just to be friendly, of course.
"Oh, my grandmother is pretending to be sick again. So, I have to take her some cakes and honey. My mother told me to go straight to Granny's house but when I saw you lying there among those flowers, it gave me an idea. I would rather eat these cakes, then lie down and go to sleep." She complained.
I had no idea what a wicked girl she was so I offered, "What a pity you have to rush over there on such a beautiful day. I’ll pick another bouquet just for her."
There were wild flowers blowing in the breeze and sunbeams dancing on the trees. Colorful butterflies fluttered here and there. She cocked her head to one side.
"You call this a beautiful day, Wolf?" she grumbled.
"Oh, yes,' I said, 'And I am sure that Granny would love a bouquet of flowers too. Surely you will allow me a few minutes to pick them for her?" I was already selecting the color arrangement that I thought Granny would like such as yellow, pink and violet.
Little Red Riding Hood yawned, patted her mouth and replied, "Okay Wolf, but hurry up! I’m sleepy and I’m tempted to eat up the food in this basket and tell Granny that mother was too lazy to cook anything today."
She flopped down in the grass and nearly dumped the contents out of her basket.
I skipped back over to the field and picked a fine bouquet for Granny. By the time I had returned, Little Red Riding Hood had eaten everything in the basket and had sound asleep, snoring with her mouth gaping open. I was so disappointed in her behavior.
"Go away, Wolf!" She mumbled as I tried to awaken her. I did not really want to disturb her rest but I was concerned that Granny was not getting her bouquet. So, I decided I would take the flowers to Granny myself. This was the only way I could insure that Granny would actually receive the flowers. Obviously, I could not trust Little Red Riding Hood.
I slipped my paws under Little Red Riding Hood’s head and slid the red riding hood off carefully so I would not disturb her nap. I did not want to scare Granny before I could even get near her, so I pulled the red riding hood over my head. I peeked at my reflection in the nearby lake. I could pass for Little Red Riding Hood, except I wasn’t as overweight.
There was only crumbs left in the basket for Granny. Looking around, I spotted a young lamb that was lost from the flock. Then I thought that Granny just might be hungry for lamb chops! Tucking the lamb under my arm, I headed for Granny’s house as fast as I could go!
On the way to Granny’s house, I saw one of the Three Little Pigs. "Hello piggy," I said cheerfully. I wasn’t trying to get on the pig’s good side. I just wanted to make him feel better by saying "Hello.'
'Oh, there you are Little Red Riding Hood. Are you going to visit your Granny today?" He asked cheerfully.
I softened my voice a little because I know that they still think I destroyed two little pigs' houses and that simply is a lie also, but that’s a different story.
"I wanted to surprise Granny with some lamb chops and snacks," I almost whispered out from under my hood. "I'm on my way there now." I added.
"I know you are doing this out of the goodness of your heart," snorted the pig. "I'm going on my way then, Have a nice day and say 'Hello' to your Granny for me."
I kept thinking I could smell pork chops cooking for some reason, but I shrugged it off and went on my way to Granny’s to give her the bouquet and the lamb. After the pig left, I pondered his sarcastic comment. He acted suspicious and I thought for a moment that maybe he recognized me. Anyway, he was mean to blame a poor defenseless wolf for blowing down two houses. I wasn't in the neighborhood at that time. Everyone in their right thinking knows that only things like tornadoes, twisters and hurricanes can blow houses down and not poor little wolves--no matter how hard they huff and puff! But he couldn’t hear me because he was already far down the road. So I continued on toward Granny's house.
That's when I saw the Boy That Cried Wolf. He gave the whole town a bad reputation by being a liar. He said twice that the wolf was eating the sheep and the third time he said this the people ignored him. Then a fox came along and did the deed himself. They all still claim it was a wolf. The discrimination we wolves have been through is remarkable.
"Hello, Little Red Riding Hood. Nice day isn't it?" he asked.
"Lovely!" I said trying to soften my voice.
Then he went on past me and along came Peter. I held my head down and ignored him completely. That Peter and the Wolf story was totally unfair! I remembered immediately that his stupid lies got a wolf into a lot of trouble.
At last, I was getting close to Granny's house when I heard someone chant:
"What rumbles and tumbles
Against my poor bones?
I thought 'twas six kids,
But it feels like big stones."
Looking around, I saw a goat eating a newspaper. I was so fed up by then that I just asked, "What’s your problem, goat?"
"Oh, nothing at all." Crunch! Crunch! The goat continued chewing up the newspaper. "I was just quoting the poem out of the Wolf and the Seven Kids. It was a pity that they had to load up that wolf's belly with rocks so that he would drown when he went to get a drink. But that’s what he deserved."
"Well it’s nice to know someone remembered the story about the wolf," I chided. "But I’ll bet there’s another side to that story. So, why don't you just go eat up a tree!"
"Could be another side to it," smacked the goat. "But there’s too many wolf stories to prove that the wolf is a bad fellow. "Then he bounded off toward the meadow. And I turned my attention toward Granny’s little cottage at the end of the road.
I took notice of her lovely garden as I sneaked up — I mean, uh, went up to the front door. Then I cleared my throat so that my voice would not scare Granny. I stuck one big paw out from under the hood and I knocked on the door.
"Who’s there?" a woman shouted hatefully.
"It is I, the friendly Wolf." I answered, not trying to disguise my voice at all. As I explained earlier, I had nothing to hide.
"I'm not about to get out of bed!" She shouted angrily. "The door is open. Are you too lazy to turn the knob and let yourself in?"
This mean comment hurt my feelings and I almost changed my mind at that point but being the good wolf that I am, I pushed the door open wide and went upstairs to Granny’s bedroom. I was still carrying the lamb under my arm.
When Granny saw me, she screamed, “Just as I thought, Wolf! You have eaten my granddaughter, put on her red riding hood, and stolen a lamb from the Huntsman’s flock.”
She threw off the covers, pulled a rifle out from under her pillow and started shooting like a crazy woman. I was so shocked that I ran down the stairs and out of the door, leaving the lamb inside with Granny.
Later, when I peeked inside the window, I saw Granny gobbling up the last of the lamb and smacking her lips. She let out a big belch. Then I heard her grumbling to herself, "I’ll go and find that lazy granddaughter of mine and we will go find the Huntsman to tell him the wolf ate up his lost lamb. Ha! Ha! He’ll chase that wolf down and cut him wide open."
I felt a sudden fear that I had never felt before in my life. I was afraid. I stayed well hidden in the bushes outside of her window. When Granny left, I knew I would have to think of a way to convince the Huntsman that I was innocent. Therefore, I hurried back into the house and up the stairs to Granny’s bedroom.
I pulled one of Granny's nightgowns over my head. It was a tight squeeze and I had to tuck in my tail. I put on Granny’s housecoat, took her old reading glasses and placed them on the end of my nose. I covered my black nose with some of her face powder. After all, I had to find some way to avoid being cut open by the Huntsman.
I looked at myself in the mirror. I really did not look anything like Granny so I pulled her nightcap down over my ears and climbed into her bed. I pushed the glasses back up to my face so I could pull the covers over my long powdered nose. It was strange how well I could impersonate little Red Riding Hood, but not her Granny.
Smiling to myself, I settled back to wait on the Huntsman. I would tell the Huntsman how Little Red Riding Hood ate up the food, and fell asleep. Then, I would make him understand how the kind wolf came and brought me a lamb and a bouquet. Then tell him he should locate Little Red Riding Hood and make her bring me a new basket of sweet things to eat…especially lamb!
I started to hear voices downstairs. I remained very still when I heard footsteps coming up the stairs. I pretended to be asleep by closing my eyes and making a loud snoring sound. The Huntsman came over to the bed and said, "Ah! Ha! So, you are pretending to be Granny, you rascal! One of the Three Little Pigs told me he saw you dressed up in Little Red Riding Hood’s clothes. Then the Boy Who Cried Wolf, told me he saw you. Then Pete from Peter and the Wolf said you tried to ignore him and the goat from The Wolf and the Seven Kids saw you as well. I have been looking for you a long time. Now I got you!"
The Huntsman held the knife under my chin but I was too quick for him. I hopped out of the bed and was out of the house before the Huntsman could turn around. I heard him yelling, "When I catch you I will cut you open and take out Granny and Little Red Riding Hood!"
Then I thought to myself, Wolf, make tracks!
I ran and ran until I returned to the field of flowers where I found a note nailed to a tree. It was from that brat, Little Red Riding Hood.
Humiliated with embarrassment, I opened it up and read it:
You stupid Wolf! Just wait until I tell everybody a tale I made up about you. You will not have a friend left in the world. Oh yes, Granny said to thank you for the lamb chops!
Little Red Riding Hood
So, I lay back down in the field to guard the sheep once more and gave all of this some thought. This is what I have learned:
Just because something looks good does not mean that it is good. Just because something looks bad does not mean that it is bad. Last, but not least, there are always two sides to every story. This is The Wolf’s Side.
LONE WOLF GOES HOLLYWOOD by Lone Wolf Sullivan is a short story and a musical movie screenplay, soon to made into a major Hollywood movie.
Here is a free link to the theme song of LONE WOLF GOES HOLLYWOOD:
Another song titled "Wolfland" is about an enormous wolf sanctuary and here is the link:
Here is a free link to hear the song "Extinct Wolf Blues":
LONE WOLF GOES HOLLYWOOD
© 2011 Lone Wolf Sullivan
Once upon a time there was an Arctic Wolf who lived with his small pack in the northern Tundra. From an early age he liked to be alone, so they named him Lone Wolf. All the wolves admired his beauty, grace, intelligence, and hunting skills. His father, Alpha, was proud of his son and promised him, "You don't have to challenge me. I want you to be the pack leader soon."
Alpha always said, "Humans are killers and must be avoided", but Lone Wolf was not convinced. One day he was exploring the area and came upon a campers' site. He noticed a sleeping bag and dragged it back to the pack. Being a curious wolf, he tore the end open and discovered feathers but no bird. Alpha said, "You got this from humans. We can't eat it, but it's warm and comfortable." It was put in their den and the wolves took turns sleeping on it. Soon Lone Wolf dragged more sleeping bags back to the den for the entire pack.
Lone Wolf enjoyed visiting campers, and hiding behind rocks and bushes he studied humans. He even learned the English language. But eventually he was noticed by humans at a very large camp site. One shouted out, "Wolf! Wolf! Shoot it!" Lone Wolf yelled back, "No! I won't do you any harm. There's nothing to be afraid of, my friends." The campers were astonished at his eloquence and explained they were making a movie. They asked him if he would like to appear in it for a large supply of food, and he said, "Throw in two sleeping bags, and it's a deal." Lone Wolf was required to chase a deer and fight a man in a bear costume for the film, and the director was very impressed with his performance. He was invited to return to Hollywood with them, and he graciously accepted.
In Hollywood, Lone Wolf quickly became a superstar, appearing in many movies as a vicious killer wolf. Usually his white fur had to be dyed gray to make him resemble a Timber Wolf. To dispel rumours by gossip columnists that he was gay he dated Lassie, but actually considered her stupid and superficial. Living in a palatial air-conditioned mansion, he often gorged himself on his favorite food, berries. The outdoor swimming pool was kept ice cold and the huge estate was converted to a small forest.
During a promotional TV interview, Lone Wolf was criticized by an animal rights activist for "selling out" and "betraying the wolves". This upset him, so he wrote a movie script and starred in "The Adventures of SuperWolf". He played a scrupulously honest flying wolf with special powers used to promote justice, equality, and freedom. It was a box office smash hit and Lone Wolf was nominated for 2 Oscars: Best Actor, and Best Screenplay. He won both and was the toast of the town, the only wolf with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
A sequel to "SuperWolf" was written, and Lone Wolf decided to shoot some of the movie on location on the tundra. While there he visited his pack and told them about his great success in Hollywood. They were not impressed, and invited him to re-join the pack as leader, since Alpha had been killed by aerial hunters. He asked if they would like to join him in Tinseltown instead. None were interested. Then he noticed White Lightning, the wolf of his dreams. He asked her to be his mate and join him in California. She said, "You're good looking and powerful, but you act like a dog and smell like flowers. I don't want to live with humans and leave this paradise."
Lone Wolf returned to Hollywood broken-hearted and tackled the serious role of Michael Lanyard, better known as the "Lone Wolf", a character created by Louis Joseph Vance in 1914. There were very many "Lone Wolf" films made in the 1920's, 30's, and 40's about the popular jewel thief who always helped those in distress. Lone Wolf re-created every movie in a film series that soon surpassed the 007 spy franchise in popularity, critical acclaim, and profits. When accepting his 5th Oscar, he received a standing ovation for saying, "The name's Wolf. Lone Wolf." He was an international icon and fabulously wealthy.
Weary of his frivolous movie star lifestyle, he set his eyes on politics, but was shocked to learn that wolves cannot run for Governor of California. Wolves cannot even vote! Thoroughly disgusted, Lone Wolf bought an enormous area of land where he was born and named it Wolfland. It was surrounded by a tall fence, included an animal hospital staffed by veterinarians and wolf biologists, and a security staff of humans to keep bears, humans and other undesirables out. Food, shelter, and sleeping bags were available for all animals. Lone Wolf had his Hollywood mansion reconstructed in Wolfland, mated with White Lightning, and they started the largest pack in wolf history. And they lived happily ever after.