Aesop’s Fables

Now, then, Ryan. Go to sleep my little man, and I’ll read you…what’s this? Ah yes, Aesop’s Fables. These are good – each with a moral at the end, I remember from when I was a boy. Good advice, all of them, but a bit outdated now, I think. Could probably stand to be revised a bit for today’s world.  

Here we are, the story of the snake and the dove. Now then, one day Farmer Brown realized he needed some help sorting out a big pile of seeds. As he was looking over his pile, a snake and a dove happened by, and asked if they might be permitted to aid the Farmer in exchange for a bit of the seed for themselves. Farmer Brown said that’d be fine, and he’d give them each an equal share. Now, the dove worked very hard all day sorting the seeds, while the snake lounged in the sun and talked with its wife on its cellphone. At the end of the day, they were both paid the same. Moral: Hard work don’t pay, snakes get ahead, and don’t let anybody tell you different.

Here’s another, the fox and the hen. Now, a fox fell in love with a hen, and asked her to marry him, and the hen agreed and bore the fox a chick-pup. But then one day, while the fox was working his ass off sorting some big pile of seeds while a bunch of half-wit snakes rode on his tail, the hen decided she was unfulfilled as a hen, and it was all the fox’s fault and she’d like to take up with some sled-dog and move to another burrow, and take the chick-pup right along with her, and just because she was a hen, the farmer’s coop decided that was perfectly just. So, the fox had to uproot his whole life and move to freaking Boston, and only gets to see his chick-pup every other weekend. Moral: Don’t care about hens or any other animal, because they’ll just shit all over you every time.

And finally, we’ve got the dog and the runt. Now, a dog had a litter of pups, and the littlest one, the runt, was the one he liked the least. He ignored it and stepped on it, and told it it was worthless its whole life long. Meanwhile, all the runt’s brother and sister dogs grew up and went to college, or into the Peace Corps, or married into money. And all along, the runt just worked its same old job, sorting seeds. Well, eventually, the father-dog got old and sick and couldn’t take care of himself anymore. And who do you think he turned to, to care for him in his old age? The runt, that’s who. All his other pups were too good for him by then. But does he thank the runt? No. He just moves right in, like he owns the place, and puts a huge strain on the runt’s already disintegrating marriage, and then when the runt’s wife leaves, he blames that all on the runt, too. The runt ought to have thrown him out on his ass, but no, he brought him along to Boston, even though it made things twice as expensive, and he got no thanks for that, either. Moral: Your grandfather’s a miserable old bastard, and he always was, and he’ll die that way.

Good night, Ryan. I love you, son. Some fathers would never say that, but I love you and I’m proud of you, no matter what you do. Remember that, when you go back to your Mom and Phil on Monday.

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