The Goodness of People

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A six-year old boy left his stuffed tiger at the Tampa Airport when he and his parents were going on a trip. The mother called back to lost and found, and found out the tiger was secure.

The parents had told their son the tiger was on an adventure. What they didn’t know was that the tiger really was on an adventure, all around the airport, thanks to the Operations Manager and fellow employees. They took pictures of the tiger in various locations of the airport, and bound it in a hard-cover book for the boy when he returned.

Red Skelton’s not here anymore, but let me give you my version of how I think Red would have depicted the little kid. We’ll call this imaginary stuffed animal EE for elephant extraordinaire.

Mommy, I left EE in the play area. He’s all by himself. Some mean little kid will take him home. Or they might put him in a room ‘til we get back. A room where they cut off the lights at night, and it’s dark, and there’s nobody else in there with him. He’ll be afraid. All by himself. He needs a babysitter. Mommy can you call, and get EE a babysitter ‘til we get back?

Mommy said EE’s on an adventure. He can’t drive, and he can’t fly by himself. He can’t walk too good, unless I walk with him. He can’t even take selfies. Mommy can I call the airport back there, and get somebody to take him around the airport, and send me pictures on your laptop?

Mommy, I’ve got to tell them what kind of ice cream he likes, chocolate and ‘nilla with nuts on top, just like me.

And Mommy if he gets up in that tower where all those people are telling the pilots how to drive the airplane, can you tell them for EE not to tell our pilot how to land. EE’s a good friend, but I don’t think I want him telling us how to land.

And Mommy if EE’s in that place where they rub you down, because something’s hurting you, tell them he’s ticklish, and might start laughing out loud. They might not like it when he laughs out loud, ‘cause he laughs really loud. Most people think an elephant can’t laugh, but they haven’t heard EE.

If these people at the airport do all of these good things for EE, I’ll write a letter to Santa Claus to tell him how good they are, and they need to get good presents for Christmas. Mommy, what are good presents for grown-ups? I think Santa Claus should bring them pens and paper, and they can write down what they want for Christmas. But if they have to wait for Santa Claus to bring them a pen and a piece of paper for them to write down what they want for Christmas, Santa Claus will be back at the North Pole by then. He’ll have to bring them presents they wrote about next year, and I don’t know whether they can be good for another year.

Mommy, you see this book all of those good people made for me while I was gone, and the adventures that EE was on? I’ll write all those people who took EE on an adventure while we weren’t here, and didn’t let him be lonely, and I’ll tell them they’ll have to be good for another year, ‘cause Santa Claus won’t come to see them next year if they’re not.

Mommy, where’s the complaint department? This book doesn’t show EE flying an airplane.

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