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"Speedy the Snail"

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Many years ago, before man ruled the world and buildings took over every living piece of space, there lived an unusual group of snails. These snails were very fast both on land and in water. They also had a curious color. They were brownish orange with a white line drawn on the right side. Many of the other snails felt that the white strip represented lightning. They believed the gods placed it there so that all the creatures of the rainforest would know that they were touched by the gods and given the ability to crawl a lot faster than the average snail. They were proud of their speed and would occasionally celebrate their gift by holding races.

The fastest of all these snails was Speedy. Speedy was so fast that he could out run all the other fast snails plus a few other mollusks in the rainforest. The village of mollusk would often depend on Speedy to deliver food or send messages to the other snails, slugs, mussels, and even the octopuses. He was highly esteemed and every one in the forest and the rivers admired him. That is everyone except Sandy.

Sandy was not too fond of Speedy. She thought that he bragged too much and that he used his speed to humiliate the other mollusk. You have to know that Sandy also belonged to the family of fast snails, but she felt that being fast was a gift. And that it had to be used only for good. She thought that all the bragging Speedy did would someday cause the family shame.

However, Speedy didn’t care what Sandy thought. He thought that his gift was so valuable to the village of mollusk that the gods would never consider taking it away. He also thought that her warnings of shame were hilarious! I mean how can such a fulfilling gift ever become a shame? So everyday as he made his rounds he would run past the other snails and make fun of them. “Ha!” he’d yell, “you guys are so slow that a leaf falling from the trees could beat you!” “Eat my dust you slow pokes! Eat my dust!”

Then one day as he ran past the other snails and made fun of them a leaf started falling off a tree branch and Speedy heard a voice come out of the tree. “Speedy because you have abused the power of speed we have given you and because you have made fun of your fellow mollusk you will soon lose your speed and so will every member of your family. If you do not apologize to everyone in the mollusk clan before that leaf hits the ground snails will be shamed forever. They will be known not for their unusual speed, but for their slow nature.” “This can not be,” Speedy thought, “all these years of hearing that dumb Sandy are finally taking their toll on me!” “I will continue my daily chores and nothing will stop me from having my fun!” So he continued.

What happened next was extremely sad. The lowly leaf hit the ground and something frightening happened to Speedy. He got hit with a lightning that came out of nowhere. His strip was erased and his speed was no more. The more he tried to reach his destination the slower he got. Then to top things off as he tried to gain speed slime started coming out of his butt! “What happened to us?” all the other speed snails cried. “We have been put to shame!” “Now even a leaf falling from a tree is faster than us!” Sandy angry at Speed’s arrogance went in search for him and saddened by their condition went in search of Speedy. She wanted to tell him, beg him to apologize to the gods for their speed back. Unfortunately, she never found him, for Speedy had hid himself in the bottom of the leaves. Ashamed of the slime that covered his path and the speed that now was a joke in the forest he hid himself from his fellow mollusk never to be seen again.

Even today, in 2010, Speedy’s shame still follows him for even today people use the term, “slow as a snail” to describe any person or thing that moves exceedingly slow.





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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

LuisManuel said...
Apr. 9, 2010 at 6:39 pm
Thanks! I'm glad you liked it! I think I will!
 
Korean said...
Apr. 9, 2010 at 2:13 am
I loved this fable.  Nice writing!  You should have this read to students at the elementary school.
 
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