Hurrah! Hurr... Hey! what's all this then? I said "two by two." I'm seeing "fours" and "ones" and a couple of pile-ups. What's with the curve? We're supposed to be marching! In a line! Straight line!
I give up. You can't herd poppets.
This poppet would like to emphasize that point by pretending to be a cat. So there.
On the first day of School, the Ambassadors - Dor and Dora - determined that the best idea was to start mini-Dal out with the regular reading group. It seemed that mini-Dal had much more indoctrination than education, and reading seemed to be the best way to introduce him to new ideas.
Baby Red was enjoying a rousing reading of "Red Fish Blue Fish," her favorite story - "It's so exciting! I NEVER walked with 10 cats on my head! How would you fit 10 cats on your head? I really don't think they stack very well. Maybe if you tied them with a string..."
Little Baby Blue was reading Wind in the Willows, which was of special interest to everyone, as it had just been released in Poppetvision, and nobody else at the Satellite had read it yet. - "There's a 'Ratty' in here. He rows a boat! I wonder if our RattyD knows how to row boats? I've never been in a boat. I would not like to crash in a car though, Toad seems a bit irresponsible..."
It turned out that mini-Dal was quite a good reader, and had, in fact, read a great many books about machines, and engineering, and tactical planning. The Ambassadors decided that, given his background in science, but relatively little knowledge of social dynamics, it would be good to start him on classic fiction. He settled right in to the reading, and things were very quiet for awhile. The Ambassadors left mini-Dal and the poppets to their reading, and wandered off to do paperwork and drink tea.
Soon, though, Dora grew concerned.
"Dor, darling, do you smell something?"
"No dear, what is it?"
"It smells like smoke! I think there is a fire in the dojo!"
The ambassadors hurried in to investigate the smoke smells. Mini-Dal was standing in front of a small firebowl, where a blaze was crackling merrily, with his "classic fiction" as fuel.
"Dal, what are you doing?"
I READ OF FIREMEN. IT SOUNDS LIKE A FINE JOB. I WANT TO BE A FIREMAN SO I'M PRACTICING.
"What book did you give him?"
"That may not have been one of your better ideas, darling. Dal, dear, how much of the book did you read?"
I READ 3 PAGES. I LEARNED: 'IT WAS A PLEASURE TO BURN.'
"Hmmm, well, you see, that wasn't exactly what I wanted you to get from this book... Oh dear."
EXTERMINATE? mini-Dal whispered his comfort word to himself.
He got the impression that things had gone wrong, again. He was beginning to like these strange little creatures, and for the first time in his nuts and bolts and fissiony existence, he felt accepted instead of feared. He didn't want to disappoint the Ambassadors, and he also hoped he wasn't going to be scolded, or made to wear his mitts again. The mitts itched.
"Dal, dear, the Ambassador and I would like to apologize for starting you off on a complicated classic. I'm sorry the book is burnt, but we don't burn books. We read them."
"Sometimes we argue about them in book club, but we don't burn them."
"Nevermind dear. We can worry about book club later. Right now, lets get you something else to read. Here we are: Grimm's Fairy Tales!"
"Dora, I don't know if that's such a good choice for unsupervised readings, either."
"Oh Dor, silly goose, what harm can it do? It's a classic!"