7

Piranhas Are Not Good Neighbors

 

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Copa Cove is an exclusive capybara community, complete with a gate and 24-hour security. Most of the residents are executives at one of the eco-tourism companies or the tourism bureau. It was incredible how many humans come in just to see the capybaras. You’d think they had never seen a very large rodent in a tie before.

One spring morning, a new family moved in. There were two adults and two children. As the neighbors looked on in horror, the newcomers unpacked a raft and beach toys. And they were plastic!

The neighborhood planned a party to welcome the new residents. Everyone gathered by the water munching on crispy greens when they arrived. The male introduced himself as Frank.

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Frank: Hello, neighbors! Name’s Frank, but you can call me Buzz.  Like in Buzzco. That’s my company. I’ll get to it in a minute. This here’s my wife. Her name’s Julie, but you can call her Babette. Get it? Buzz and Babette. Sounds good together, doesn’t it?

(His children were standing by looking mortified. The neighbors were trying not to.)

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Buzz: These are my children, Ben and Betty. Hoping to get them into the family business. No luck so far, but they’re young. Now let me tell you about Buzzco. It’s my company and my pride and joy. Has anyone heard of it?

(Blank stares)

Buzz: That’s OK. We’re small, but we’re growing every day. That’s how we can afford to live like. Remember the name: Buzzco.

Priscilla (when Buzz finally took a breath): That sounds very, uh, nice. What exactly do you do at Buzzco?

Buzz: I’m glad you asked. We’re a marketing company that specializes in land development companies. Get it? Buzzco? Like when a tree comes down?

(The group looks horrified.)

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Carl: You do understand that you’re taking land from capybaras, don’t you?

Buzz: Don’t worry, there’s plenty of land left.

Carl: But they have to leave their homes.

Buzz: We’re a hardy species.

Carl: I wouldn’t want to move because someone destroyed my home.

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Buzz: Don’t worry. Won’t happen. You don’t think I’d move somewhere they’re about to level, do you?

(Dead silence)

Darlene (trying to sound normal): Well, we should probably get to eating before the grasses wilt.

(Relieved, everyone moved to the water. The talk turned to the weather, children, and other general topics. The party soon broke up. There was work in the morning. Before they left, Buzz had one final thing to say.)

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Buzz: You were so nice to us tonight, I’d like to invite you over on Saturday for brunch. That work for everybody?

Pete (with some hesitation): Hmm. That would be fine. We’ll see you then.

(No one knew what to expect when they got to Buzz’s. They were pleasantly surprised. The home was tastefully decorated and looked completely organized. Obviously, Babette ran the house. Buzz came from the backyard.)

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Buzz: C’mon everyone. I have something to show you.

(They followed him back. He pointed to a large hole filled with water. His neighbors looked at him, puzzled.)

Buzz: It’s called a pool. I got the idea from the humans. They swim in them. I figured I’d try it.

(While he was extolling the virtues of having a pool, the children were running around. Suddenly the adults heard a splash and screaming. A small capybara had fallen into the pool. Her father Dave rushed over and pulled her out. She was bleeding in several places.)

Dave (puzzled): How did you get cut falling in the water, honey?

Daughter: There are a lot of sharp things in there.

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(Dave looked at Buzz.)

Buzz: Sorry. Haven’t had time to put up a fence yet. Didn’t think about someone falling in.

Dave: What’s in the pool?

Buzz: Piranhas. Love the little guys. They have that killer instinct. Would make good businessmen.

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Dave: You have piranhas in a pool that anyone could fall into?

Buzz: Actually, I’m surprised there was a problem. I’ve never been bitten. Of course, a child is a lot smaller. She probably frightened them. I should look into it.

Dave (between clenched teeth): And we need to look into getting rid of you.

(Buzz was too wrapped up in his fish to hear.)

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To be continued…

8

Love is a Fresh Fish

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(Photos – and anything that resembles actual bear behavior – come from Wayne at Welcome to Tofino Photography.

Mama Bear had decided that after three years it was time for her two sons, Ben and Eddie, to move out on their own.

Ben: Mama, why are you kicking us out?

Mama: It’s time for both to find girls and settle down. I want grand-cubs before I’m too old to play with them.

(Ben walks away)

Eddie: What’s going on?

Ben: Mama want us to go and have cubs.

(Eddie blushes under his fur.)

Eddie: How are we going to do that?

Ben: With girls, stupid

Eddie: I know that. But how do I find a girl?

Ben: What do you mean? I’ve seen the way you look at Mary Sue. Just talk to her.

Eddie: I can’t do that.

Ben: Why not?

Eddie: I wouldn’t know what to say.

Ben: You could try “Hello”.

(Just then Mary Sue walked by with her mother. She looked at Eddie and smiled.)

Ben: See? She likes you.

Eddie: Isn’t she beautiful? That velvety nose, thick fur, white teeth.

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(He pauses.)

Ben: Just go talk to her.

(Eddie finally gets up the nerve to run after her when he sees Joe, Casanova of beardom, start talking to her.)

Eddie: I can’t. Joe’s talking to her and all the girls love Joe.

(All of a sudden, they hear a loud “whap”.)

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Ben (snickering): Well, Mary Sue sure doesn’t love him. Quit being stupid; You won’t know anything unless you talk to her.

(They’re walking along the riverbank and decide they might as well have lunch. After enjoying a nice fresh salmon, they continue on their way. They see two cubs fighting over a dead salmon.)

Ben: I know! You could give her a present.

Eddie: I’m not going to give her a dead fish.

Eddie: I don’t know. What if she doesn’t like it?

Ben: It’s food Eddie. She’s a bear. Bears love food.

Eddie: That’s true. Let me think about it.

(Ben shakes his head. Eddie thinks about how much he likes Mary Sue.)

Eddie: OK. I’ll do it.

(Eddie walks over close to Mary Sue. The water is falling over the rocks and it looks like a good place for fish. He gets into the water, slipping a little on the mossy rock. He easily catches a big fish and takes it out of the water, walking to Mary Sue. He drops it at her feet.)

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Mary Sue: Eddie, is that for me?

Eddie (embarrassed): I hope you like fish.

Mary Sue: I love it!

(She gobbles it down and smiles at him.)

Mary Sue: That was very sweet of you Eddie.

Eddie: Thank you.

(He hesitates a little.)

Eddie: Would you like to go to the picnic with me tomorrow?

Mary Sue: I’d love too.

(The next morning, Eddie meets Mary Sue on the beach. They walk together to the clearing in the woods where some other bears have already gathered. They snack on berries and talk. Eddie seems very nervous. Finally, he speaks.)

Eddie: Mary Sue, I’d like to ask you a question.

Mary Sue: You look so serious Eddie. What’s the question?

Eddie: Would you dance with me? (Rough human translation: Will you marry me?)

Mary Sue: Ohhh. I’d love to.

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(They get up and do their mating dance. When they are done, they walk off into the woods. Eddie is taking her to the den he has spent all night preparing in case she said yes. Back at the picnic Mama Bear is thrilled. She goes looking for Ben who has slipped away into the woods.)

Be sure to check out Tofino Photography. It has a lot more than bears. But we like the bears.