(Ed. note: Rudyard Kipling submitted these "Just Not So Stories" to his editor in 1895. They were rejected. Following his editor's suggestion, he reworked them into a book called "Just So Stories" which was finally published in 1902. We were fortunate enough to find these drafts among his papers.)
(Disclaimer: OK, I admit it; These are from my book, "Fishducky's Fables" and I've run some of these before, but, hey, I'm 82. You can't expect me to run a new post five times a week. At least I've reworked them and the cartoons are all new!!)
Did you know that many years ago, the kangaroo had no pouch? That’s true. I wouldn’t lie to you. (I might kid you a little bit, but I wouldn’t lie to you.) Let me tell you how they got the pouches that they have today.
Since most of them couldn’t afford babysitters or even the least expensive day care facility, when they went out to feed, the mother kangaroos always had their children with them. Every time they let go of their paws to bend down to take a bite of a delicious plant or munch on some grass their joeys (babies) would run off to play. The moms would have to stop eating and go off in search of them. It was okay when the joeys were tiny and in their strollers, but they soon outgrew those. True, it kept the mothers slim, but they were always hungry.
The fathers were no help;
they just drank beer
or played with their balls all day
One day one of the mothers had a great idea. “If we just had something to put them in,” she thought, “We could finally finish a meal without all that hassle.” She went online and typed in “baby carriers”. She found Baby Bjorns and Moby Wraps and some other brands. She ordered several so she and her friends could try them out. They were fine when the mothers were standing still, but when they bent over to eat, the joeys still slipped out. And there was no way they would stay in when their moms started hopping!! They had to come up with a Plan B.
They thought and thought and they watched many other animals. They saw an alligator with her baby sitting on her head and they tried that but it gave them headaches. They saw an opossum with her babies on her back and they tried that, too, but when they stood up, the joeys fell off. It was then that they had another idea--why not carry them in a purse? A few of them went to the local Dollar Store and got some inexpensive purses to try it out. They worked perfectly but human (and kangaroo) nature being what it is, some of the mothers had to show off. They began carrying their joeys in handbags designed by Louis Vuitton, Kate Spade and even Prada.
Naturally, that made the kangaroo mothers who couldn’t afford the designer brands very sad. One of them (I know her first name was Martha and I think her last name was Stewart, but I'm not sure) went to Pinterest and found a pattern for an apron. She played around with it and discovered that if she sewed two of them together, with an opening at the top which could by kept closed with a drawstring, she had the perfect baby carrier. She made enough for all her friends, who loved them. She decided to start a business online and it wasn’t long before all of the lady kangaroos, even the Prada carrying ones, started ordering them from Martha and wearing them.
Apparently, Mother Nature thought that was a really good idea, too, because now all female kangaroos are born with her version of that apron. She didn’t include the drawstring closure, though.
Carol Wyer's new book is being released today!!
To hear Carol read the first chapter, click here.