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Syndic Literary Journal

Moral Fables ~ LeRoy Chatfield ~ No Bullying

 SOME MORAL FABLES

Written by Paul M. Levitt

 

Narrated by Syndic Literary Journal Poets

Published by LeRoy Chatfield

 

Letter from the Publisher

Early last December (2021) out of the Covid-blue, you might say, I received an email from one Paul M. Levitt telling me he had written some Moral Fables and would I be interested in publishing  them in my Syndic Literary Journal?

Attached to the email was a manuscript entitled “No Bullying” which contained the text for  14 Moral Fables.

After  I read the first Fable, I responded: Paul, these fables are beyond clever, and I will publish them if you will agree they should also be narrated. 

 Today, March 31, 2022, I am publishing ~ and narrating ~ “No Bullying” – Paul Levitt’s 14th (and final) Moral Fable.

If Paul were to ask me today what I think about his Fables, I would write the following review: “Your Moral Fables are beyond clever, deceptively simple, extremely well written, and a narrator’s delight!”

Paul, Thank You!  Your Moral Fables were well received by my Syndic Journal audience, thank you for asking me to publish them; my only regret is you do not have more of them for me  to publish . . . and narrate!

~ LeRoy Chatfield Publisher Syndic Literary Journal

 

Moral Fable No.14  ~  No Bullying

Narrated by LeRoy Chatfield Publisher Syndic Literary Journal

 

NO BULLYING

     The school principal, Mr. Woodhouse, had repeatedly warned the children, “No Bullying!”  In his dark suit and white shirt and blue tie, he told them that bullying can take different forms:  teasing, name calling, taunting, tweeting ugly messages, pushing, fighting, gossiping, snubbing, ganging up, and getting other children to go along with mistreating someone else.  All the children at the Maple Avenue School promised to behave politely toward one another—all except one, Bobby Grieze, who went right on acting like a bully.

     Ten years old, Bobby Grieze had been held back a year in school.  His grades were poor and his attitude was terrible.  Unhappy and lazy, he blamed others for all his problems.  He blamed his parents and his sisters (he had no brothers); he blamed his school teachers and the principal.  Because he had no friends at school, he felt lonely and insecure.  So to get attention, he bullied others.  He particularly disliked Marty Litman, who was short, overweight, quiet, and a very good student.  Bobby called him a wuss, a wimp, a faggit, and a girl.

     When Bobby shoved Marty to the ground, Marty merely stood up, brushed himself off, and went on his way, without complaining.  Bobby hoped that Marty would fight back, but Marty pretended that nothing had happened.  Bobby therefore called him a sissy and acted even meaner.  He snatched Marty’s homework from his hand; he told lies about Marty; and he stole Marty’s lunch, which Mrs. Litman carefully prepared each day and put in a brown paper bag.

     At first, the boys and girls of the Maple Avenue School simply stared as Bobby picked on Marty.  They wondered why Marty didn’t fight back.  After all, Bobby Grieze was as thin as a knitting needle, and all Marty had to do was sit on him.  But Marty was a gentle sort and always turned the other cheek.  Since Marty wouldn’t defend himself, some of the children began to think that maybe Marty really was a wuss, and they began to join in, until not only Bobby Grieze was mistreating Marty, but also other children.  Bobby was delighted.  He was now the leader of a pack, telling his gang what to do, especially when it came to teasing Marty.  Every day Marty received nasty text messages.  A girl in his social studies class handed him her lipstick and suggested that he use it.  She laughed and ran off, calling him a name.  Boys often tackled him and tied his shoelaces in knots.  In class, if Marty answered a question, Bobby Grieze’s gang would make a sucking noise with their mouth and call Marty a brown-nose and the teacher’s pet.  Pretty soon Marty stopped answering questions, and between classes, he would try to find an isolated spot in which to hide, to escape the constant bullying.

     One day, after classes had finished, Bobby Grieze and his pack formed a circle in the schoolyard around Marty, and they wouldn’t let him out.  They were singing the following song:  “Fat and skinny had a race; fat fell down and broke his face; skinny went on to win the race.”  Most of the children laughed and pointed at Marty.  The one person who didn’t laugh was Mae Martinez, a little girl in a pink summer dress and white sandals.  Her Mexican family had come to the United States to work in the California lettuce fields.  She knew what it was like when people made fun of her family for not speaking English very well, and when voices shouted that the immigrants ought to go back to where they came from.

     She stepped into the circle, stood next to Marty, and said, “How would you like it if you had to stand here and listen to hyenas?”

     “Who are you calling a hyena?” asked Bobby Grieze.

     “You!” answered Mae, standing as straight as a Marine.

     Bobby wanted to punch her, but he knew that if he did, the other children would see him for what he was:  a bully.  So he said, “Poor Marty, why don’t you fight instead of hiding behind a little girl’s dress?  You really are a wimp.”

     Mae took Marty’s hand and led him out of the circle.  Bobby trailed behind them, swearing at both.  She looked back over her shoulder and said, “If you’re so brave, just follow us.” 

     Bobby worried that she would march into the principal’s office and tell him all about Bobby’s bullying.  But she went to the front gate of the school, where her older brother, Raul, and his German Shepherd dog, Loco, met her each day to walk her home.  Mae took the dog’s leash from her brother and asked Bobby:

     “What if I sic Loco on you:  Would you like it?”

     Bobby was scared.  He backed away and looked as if he wanted to run home as fast as he could.

     “Well,” said Mae, “the next time you bark at Marty and get your gang to sic him, I’m bringing Loco to school to teach you a lesson.”

******

What would you advise?

  1. that Marty tell his parents about the bullying?
  2. that Marty tell the school principal about the bullying?
  3. that Marty get into a fight with Bobby Grieze?
  4. that Marty lose weight and become an average student?
  5. that Mae sic her dog on Bobby Grieze to teach him a lesson?
  6. that Marty buy a dog to protect himself?

 

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