Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Week 6 Storytelling: To be satisfied or not to be satisfied

Hi everyone, my name is Jim. I am a grasshopper who has lived in the woods for all of his life. I am here today to tell you about an event that occurred few days. I have been trying my hardest to find someone who can translate what I am saying to English. I am so glad I found Farhan. He will translate what I will say (Psssh... This is Farhan - hopefully I can do a good job as I am a little iffy in my grasshopper language, but don't tell Jim).

The day started as any other day. Bright sun in the sky. The smell of flowers covered the whole forest. Animals going their merry ways. All of a sudden, I heard two individuals arguing. The two individuals were a tiger and a fox. Luckily, I knew the language they were speaking, hence I can tell you what happened.

"We had a deal," said the fox.

"What deal?" asked the tiger.

"That we would go hunting together and distribute our findings evenly together," replied the fox.

"We had no such deal!" exclaimed the tiger.

"Please give me my share as I am hungry also after not eating for a whole day yesterday," pleaded the fox.

The tiger immediately retorted, "If you don't leave now, I will include you in my findings." He took a swipe at the fox afterwards. That swipe injured the fox somewhat.

The injured fox decided to leave, but I understood from the look of his face that he was devising a plan. 
After some time..

The tiger is busy eating from the pile of food. The fox can be seen slowly coming back.

"You still haven't finished your share?" asked the fox.

The tiger was too busy eating. He didn't notice the fox was coming back. After hearing the question, he was surprised to see that the fox was back. He answered after some time, "It is such a big pile, how can I finish so quickly. Why have you come back? All of these are mine!"

"I am halfway through my share!" said the fox.

"Your share?" asked the tiger.

"Yes! When we were coming back and when you were not looking, I hid some of it knowing you wouldn't give me my share," explained the fox.

"WHAT?!" said the tiger angrily. He immediately demanded to know the location of the other pile, "Where is that pile? Tell me right now."

The fox immediately gave away the location of the pile. Seeing this, I had tons of questions in my mind. I was very curious as why the fox came back to give away his secret pile.

"Stay here. If one piece is moved from my pile. Then I will find you and finish you!" said the tiger and went toward his destination of the secret pile.

"Say Mr. Fox, why did you come back and give away your location. You should've known if you eat even one piece from the pile, then Mr. Tiger would know." I said.

"Well Mr. Grasshopper, after I left from here. I went hunting. That secret location contains my new hunted pile. It is placed on top of a trap. I knew if I told the tiger I hid some of his shares, he would immediately go to retrieve them." explained the fox.

I didn't fully understand. What kind of trap did he make? I decided to ask, "I don't understand. What kind of trap did you make?"

"Well then. Let us go and see," said the fox.

I knew I wasn't in any danger as I can jump away really fast if he tries to attack me. So I decided to go and see.

"See there. I found that hole in the ground," said the fox pointing at the hole from a little distance. He went on, "I stole some sharpened tools from a nearby farm and placed them upwards in the hole."

I was busy listening, hence, I didn't say anything. So the fox continued, "I covered the hole with some big leaves and when it was sturdy enough, I went and placed my findings into the leaves."

"What if you fell?" I asked.

"I placed the sharpened tools far apart, where if I fell I wouldn't get hurt. But since the tiger is so big, he would still be done," answered the fox before going on to add, "Let's see what happened to the tiger."

We went to the edge of the hole. It wasn't too big a hole, but it could've fit a tiger in it. We saw that the tiger was in it. Blood filled the hole. The tiger was not breathing.

"He got what he deserved. He should've divided the pile as we both worked equally hard. I just lost it when took that swipe at me and injured me," said the fox.

"I agree," I said as I didn't know what else to say. I knew the fox was justified in his payback. I felt sorry for the tiger though as he could've lived if he was just satisfied with the pile he had. Instead, he came to look for more when he had lots to begin with.

Then I bid farewell to the fox as I knew he was not a very good company to have.

I hope you liked my experience and learned the important lesson of being satisfied with what you have. And remember, learn to give. As you won't become a beggar if you give when you have lots to give from.

That is all. I hope Farhan told it correctly. If you find a mistake, let me know in the comments as I will most likely learn to speak and write the English language by then. I also told Farhan to find an image of a fox and a tiger to represent the story. Hope he finds a good one. Bye for now...

Drawing of a tiger and a fox. Done by Hollie Hibbert.
Found on her tumblr account.
Source: Hollie Hibbert Illustrations

Author's Note. This story is based on the Chinese Fairy Tale "The Miserly Farmer" found in The Chinese Fairy Tales reading unit. This book was written by R. Wilhelm. In that story, a farmer brought a cart full of pears to the market to sell. One poor priest asked for one as he had no money. The farmer refused to give a single one as he was wanting to sell every single one. The priest tricks everyone in the market, including the farmer, into believing he is making a pear tree grow. He distributes pears from the "tree". After finishing distributing, he leaves. The farmer looks back afterwards, and finds his cart to be empty. He then understands what happened. In my version, I changed everything, including changing the characters to animals, but I kept the important lesson intact: learn to give when you have lots to give from. My story is not mirrored to the original. I made the tiger lose everything like the farmer and I made the fox a kind of bad animal, similar to the priest. the bad is that, they could've gotten their payback different ways, but they went too extreme. The picture I found is from a tumblr account. It represents how they went hunting together and the how the tiger jumped into the hole. I chose this story because it seemed interesting and I wanted to see how I can write my own version of it. I wanted to try something different to complete the growth mindset. Hence, I included Jim. That might confuse people a little bit, but the story is told from his first-person point of view. It was written where he is telling me what happened, and I am translating exactly what he is saying.

Bibliography: "The Miserly Farmer" by R. Wilhelm and translated by Frederick H. Martens, from The Chinese Fairy Tales (1921). Web Source: UnTextbook.


  1. Hey Farhan! I enjoyed reading your story. I liked that you used a lot of dialogue and that your paragraphs were broken up. It made the story very easy to read. I also liked that you had a narrator that spoke through you. It added something special to the story. I look forward to reading more of your work this semester!

  2. Hi there Farhan! To start off, I thought the beginning was a nice introduction and funny too. It gave it a more personal feel to the story. I also enjoyed that it was told from the first person point of view, I think that was a nice touch. Some small things: in the second paragraph I think that it may flow better if the second sentence read "Sun shining brightly in the sky." And the third sentence "The smell of flowers covering the whole forest," (since the previous and next sentence are present tense). Lastly, in the second section I believe the sentence starting with "The tiger is.." should possibly be past tense since the rest of the story is? Anyways, I really did enjoy reading your story and I liked your writing style as well! I look forward to reading more of your storytelling's!

  3. Interesting re telling. The blood filling the hole line got me. Some people try to avoid the vivid realities and try to make things censored like a disney movie so I enjoy when someone writes with harsh detail such as what you have done here. It's a sad story but a moral driven one, much like many Aesop's fables. Converting the humans into animals is always interesting as well. Fox are always seen as selfish tricksters just about, and true to form in your story. Good job.

  4. Hey Farhan,
    I really liked the voice that you gave to the story, I think it really added a little humor to the beginning when the story is actually quite violent. I like your simplistic writing style, you don't try to bombard people with fancy words or intricate sentences and the story is told simply which I enjoyed. Though it was easy to read there were some grammatical errors that you should go back and change but can be fixed easily. Other than that good job!