Never Slap a Helping Hand

Terrapin Joe was a slow mover. And he ate terrible things like prickly pear cactus. It positively makes me sick to tell you about it.

One day he fell into a hole and couldn’t get out. He was on his back and couldn’t roll over. He pictured a doom of slow starvation.

But as it turned out, a roadrunner came along and peered over the edge of the declivity. “What are you doing down there?” he asked.

“Sunning my belly, you fool. Help me get out of this hole.”

“Nope. Can’t do that.”

“Why ever not?”

“Cause you insulted me.”

“I’m sorry. Please help me.”

“Oh, alright.” The bird leapt into the hole, landed on one side of the shell, and flipped Joe clean over. Then he left.

“So where did he go?” Joe wondered. “I really ought to thank him.”

But he still couldn’t climb out of that hole.

Copyright 2013 George Lowell Tollefson


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