Friday, December 07, 2007

Book Club

"This was a dumb idea," Pumble grumbled as he sat awkwardly on the floor, clutching a book to his chest. "Who really reads, anyway?"

"I read!" one of the ducks protested from the Spa.

"You're dumb if you don't read!" the second duck jeered.

"Perhaps you should try a different genre?" the third duck suggested kindly.

Hairy waited until the seals had carried their book over and Cookies had settled down. "Thank you for coming to the Book Club," he announced formally. "I hope everyone has brought their book."

Everyone nodded. The ducks quacked from the bathtub.

"I thought we'd start out by everyone showing what book they brought," Hairy beamed. He did love reading. He was so excited they had agreed to have a book club. "Who wants to start?"

Everyone stared at him blankly. "Ok, I'll start," Hairy said brightly, picking up his book. "I began reading The Golden Compass."

"You just did that because of the movie," Cookies sneered. "That's not a real book."

"Well, it's true I didn't know about it until the movie was advertised," Cookies admitted. "But it's a wonderful book. It reminds me of Madeline L'Engle's work! It's brilliant, it really is. Very well-written."

"Well, I brought War and Peace," Cookies crowed arrogantly, straining to hold up his large book. "A classic for those of us who are truly educated."

"I know for a fact that book is used to hold up your roost, you bloated fake," Pumble accused him.

"And what did you bring?" Cookies snarled. "Something about food, I'm sure. You can't go without talking about food for two minutes."

"For your information, I brought Betty Crocker's Cookbook," Pumble sniffed, clutching the well-worn tomb to his chest. "I read it every day. I've just now made it to the cookie section without drooling."

"Cookbooks don't count!" Cookies argued.

"They do so!" Pumble shot back. "Do you know how many glorious new recipes I've tried just from reading this book?"

"I can see for myself," Cookies eyed Pumble's amble girth. Sensing a fight, the seals chattered loudly as they waved their book in the air.

"Everybody Poops," Hairy repeated, trying not to smile. "That's a wonderful choice. And what did you like about it? Oh, that everybody poops. Well, that's true. There's no seal poop in there? Or salmon poop? Well, perhaps you could write a letter to the author and point out his mistake."

"I just lost my appetite," Pumble muttered.

"I don't poop," Owl announced. "I regurgitate owl pellets."

"Yes, well, that was a lovely meeting," Hairy interrupted hastily. He could see Pumble's eye twitching and didn't know what he was going to say. He didn't want to know.

"You forgot about us!" the first duck yelled from the spa.

"You can't forget us!" the second duck, cried, indignant.

"We'd like to speak, if that's all right," the third duck asked meekly.

"I'm so sorry!" Hairy cried, rushing to the Spa doorway. "Please, let's see your books!"

"I have Moby Dick," the first duck said smugly.

"You can't even read," Cookies sneered.

"I'm reading The Yellow Duck," the second duck boasted.

"That's a blog!" Cookies protested. "That doesn't count."

"Does so!" the second duck retorted.

"Does not!" Cookies argued.

"And what is your book?" Hairy asked the third duck, praying he'd answer quickly.

"I'm reading Ponies," the third duck beamed. The other two ducks turned to stare at him.

"Ponies?" they asked. "Why are you reading about ponies?"

"It's a good book!" the third duck protested. As Pumble began to argue with Cookies and the seals rushed to the bathroom to see if ducks pooped, Hairy sat down with a sigh. His book club had turned to chaos. He looked to his side and saw The Golden Compass laying beside him. With a smile, he picked it up and began to read. Who needed a book club anyway?