Taking a bite out of youth

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 2, 2005

Well, June has finally arrived. The warm, no make that hot, days of the summer are looming ahead.

With June comes the annual celebration of one certain R-C News-Herald employee’s birthday. This certain person turns five-score plus two this year.

To help this person cope with the always present signs of middle age, I’d like to share this fable. It’s a story that all old folks, including him, will appreciate:

A wealthy old lady decides to go on a photo safari in Africa, taking her faithful aged poodle named Cuddles, along for the company.

One day the poodle starts chasing butterflies and before long, Cuddles discovers that she’s lost.

Wandering about, she notices a leopard heading rapidly in her direction with the intention of having lunch.

The old poodle thinks, &uot;Oh, oh!

I’m in deep do-do now!&uot;

Noticing some bones on the ground close by, she immediately settles down to chew on the bones with her back to the approaching cat, one licking his chops as he eyeballs a quick snack.

Just as the leopard is about to leap, the old poodle exclaims loudly, &uot;Boy, now that was one delicious leopard!

I wonder if there are any more around here?&uot;

Hearing this, the young leopard halts his attack in mid-strike; a look of terror comes over him and he slinks away into the trees.

&uot;Whew,&uot; says the leopard, &uot;that was an extremely close call. That old poodle nearly had me!&uot;

Meanwhile, a young monkey, who had been watching the whole scene from a nearby tree, figures he can put this knowledge to good use and trade it for protection from the leopard.

So off he goes, but the old poodle sees him heading after the leopard with great speed and, with the wisdom that comes with age, figures that something must be up.

After a short period of time, the monkey catches up with the leopard. He spills the beans about the poodle’s cunning and daring skills and strikes a deal for himself with the leopard.

After hearing the monkey’s story, the young leopard is furious at being made a fool of and says, &uot;Here, monkey, hop on my back and see what’s going to happen to that conniving canine!&uot;

Now, the old poodle sees the leopard coming with the monkey on his back and thinks, &uot;What am I going to do now?&uot;

However, instead of running, thereby tipping her hand and revealing that the first incident was nothing more than a bluff, the old dog sits down with her back to her attackers, pretending she hasn’t seen them yet.

At the perfect time, when the leopard and the monkey get within range to hear the dog’s voice, the old poodle says: &uot;Where’s that damn monkey?

I sent him off well over an hour ago to bring me another leopard. I’m getting hungry once again.&uot;

The moral of this story – Don’t mess with old farts (including old editors) because age and treachery will always overcome youth and skill!

Brilliance only comes with age and experience!