Monday, August 19, 2013


"Hey, cows!" shouted Farmer Shapiro.

The cows in the pasture raised their heads sluggishly and looked in his general direction.

"Cows! Oh, cows!"

The cows squinted at the hazily familiar figure in the distance, vaguely attempting to fathom its curious utterances.

"Cows!" Farmer Shapiro repeated. "Din-din time!"

Most of the cows had absolutely no idea what was going on, and the rest of them had already forgotten that something was indeed going on. One cow toyed briefly with the idea of saying "moo" but quickly discarded the notion when his attention was diverted by a flock of vampire bats fluttering by overhead.

"Din-din time! Yip-yip!" shouted Farmer Shapiro.

There was still no response from the cows. Twilight descended rapidly over the countryside, casting a pall upon the proceedings.

"Din-din time! Yip-YIPPEE!"

"Yip-YIPPEE!" wafted listlessly on the breeze toward the cows. As they stood motionlessly in their stupor, hooves sinking gradually into the soft, marshy earth, "Yip-YIPPEE!" swirled into their aural passages and began to echo back and forth across their dense, bovine minds. Although there was something very familiar about the sound, the cows just couldn't seem to pin it down. Eventually, "Yip-YIPPEE!" faded off into the dark, silent recesses of their sodden brains and the cows were right back where they started. That is, all except for one, whose name was Lenny.

Farmer Shapiro shuffled restlessly as he waited for a response. Being a farmer, he had to deal with cows every day, and he often found himself wishing they were considerably smarter.

Meanwhile, Lenny the cow was mentally struggling to put two and two together. "Yip-YIPPEE!", he seemed to recall, almost always preceeded something good. Something like...DIN-DIN TIME!

"MOO!" bellowed Lenny as he hopped up and down in the mud, ecstatic over his mental triumph. "MOO!"

The other cows were taken aback by this startling display. They peered foggily at Lenny and tried to figure out what terrible thing could be happening to him to cause him to behave in such an atypical manner. Then, like a bolt of lightning, it hit them. Could this mean...?

Ethel the cow stepped forward tentatively. "Moo?" she asked.

"MOO!" Lenny affirmed frantically.

The other cows were catching on as a wave of excitement swept over the herd. "MOO!" they howled in unison, jumping up and down.

Farmer Shapiro sprang to attention and slapped his thigh joyfully. "DIN-DIN TIME!" he cried. "YIP-YIPPEE!"

"YIP-YIPPEE!" was now a clarion call which thundered across the pasture and pierced the dusky veil of the cows' collective intelligence. With an ever-increasing fervor they glanced amongst themselves to see who was going to make that first decisive move. It was Lenny. With one last leap high into the air he dug his hooves into the earth and propelled himself forward.

Farmer Shapiro was beside himself. "Come on, cows!" he screamed. "COME ON, COWS!"

Now the entire herd was on the move, with Lenny leading the way. The rumble of hooves filled the air as they stormed onward, mooing with an almost frightening intensity. Every last one of them was now fully aware of what was going on, and it seemed as though nothing could stop them from reaching their goal. DIN-DIN TIME, they thought resolutely as the shadowy figure of Farmer Shapiro grew closer with each forward bound. YIP-YIPPEE!

Farmer Shapiro was jumping up and down himself by this time. He threw his hat high into the air and shrieked, "COME ON, COWS!"

Suddenly Ethel the cow slipped on a banana peel that Farmer Shapiro had carelessly dropped the day before. Tumbling head over heels, her considerable forward momentum launched her with blinding speed toward the watering hole. She came down with a mighty splash, her bulky bovine mass settling deeply into the mud. Legs flailing desperately, Ethel struggled in vain against the powerful suctional force. She was stuck.

"Oh, no!" cried Farmer Shapiro in shock. "ETHEL!"

The other cows witnessed Ethel's fate but could not be stopped. Steadfastly, they barreled onward with even greater determination. Farmer Shapiro was proud of them. "Come on, cows!" he cried. "You can do it!"

At that moment three of the cows, Bossie, Flossie, and Howard, let out a piercing wail as the ground disappeared from beneath them and they flew headlong into a long-forgotten trap Farmer Shapiro had dug way back in World War II just in case his farm might be invaded by enemy spies on the prowl.

"Dadburn it! I should've filled those things in forty years ago!" he chided himself. "COME ON, COWS!"

There was a muffled rumbling in the distance. Bimbo the cow, travelling apart from the rest of the herd, was much too intent on her immediate concerns to notice it even as it grew closer with each passing millisecond. Then it was too late.

"WATCH OUT, BIMBO!" Farmer Shapiro warned breathlessly.

With terrifying abruptness, the recently-derailed 7:45 freight train from Wyoming rocketed across Bimbo's path and scooped her up in its cowcatcher. Secured firmly to the front of the train by centrifugal force, the extremely perplexed Bimbo found herself careening toward the distant horizon at tremendous velocity. The 7:45 from Wyoming thundered off into the twilight in a cloud of dust and smoke as Farmer Shapiro watched helplessly.

"COME ON, COWS!" he wailed, not noticing the formation of flying saucers which hovered silently over the pasture.

Mbxwjklf locked in the final computer coordinates and turned to his commanding officer. "We are now ready to commence abduction of the Earth creatures for observation," he announced.

"You may proceed," said flight captain Kbljdrrp.

The transport beam flickered to life and quickly zeroed in on a cow named Fred. He suddenly became weightless and began to drift rapidly upward toward one of the alien craft, disappearing through an aperture in its underside. Presently, several more cows began to follow suit.

"HEY! Come back with my cows!" Farmer Shapiro shouted angrily. The alien formation emitted a green glow and heedlessly zipped away at the speed of light.

Farmer Shapiro watched the flying saucers depart and then looked out across the pasture. There was only one cow left.

"COME ON, LENNY!" he screamed as if there were no tomorrow. "DIN-DIN TIME! YIP-YIPPEE!"

Lenny pressed onward with more resolve than ever before. DIN-DIN TIME echoed like an air-raid siren throughout his brain. YIP-YIPPEE seared the very fabric of his being. The ground flew by swiftly under his hooves, his destination mere seconds away.

It was then that Farmer Shapiro's fairy godmother appeared. She materialized by the feed trough, waving her magic wand. In a sweet little tinkling voice she said, "Hello, Farmer Shapiro! I'm your fairy godmother, and I'm here to grant you your one fondest wish in life!"

Lenny collided with her and they both flew over the feed trough and crashed into the side of the barn. When the dust settled, Lenny was sprawled out in a pile of manure with two little fairy feet sticking out from under him. He was groggy but that didn't keep him from spying the feed trough, filled to capacity with oats. "MOO!" he bellowed with unrestrained glee as he staggered to his feet.

Horrified, Farmer Shapiro rushed to the scene. "Fairy godmother!" he cried, shaking her vigorously. "Are you all right? Speak to me!"

When her vision finally cleared she glared at him indignantly. "Am I all right?" she retorted. "You just dropped a cow on me, you jerk! Forget this noise!" She disappeared in a puff of smoke.

Farmer Shapiro blinked his eyes and stood up. With a sigh, he ambled slowly over to a fencepost and leaned back, gazing out over the darkened countryside. Then he looked over at Lenny, who was munching contentedly on his oats.

"I wish I had a million dollars," he said.

Nothing happened.

"Dadburn you, Lenny!" said Farmer Shapiro.


No comments: