Monday, August 15, 2011


Category: Humor/Satire

          I remember when Og first brought fire into the cave. It was a smokey disaster. “Get that dirty thing out of here now,” Old Bag bellowed. Old Bag ruled the roost inside the cave— her word was law.
          “But Bag,” Og pleaded, “just look, it makes heat and light as well. You should try it.” Og was doing his best to convince her that there was something to be gained by having the fire inside. “We can keep it near the entrance,” Og persisted. “That way it’s out of the rain.” Og was tired of starting the fire from scratch each time it rained.
          Old Bag was not convinced she wanted the filthy thing inside, although the thought of a source of heat appealed mightily to her old bones. After a lifetime of living in the cold dark cave, she was suffering from a host of maladies. “It eats,” said Old Bag scornfully, “who will feed it?”
          “I will feed it,” said Og who really hadn’t thought the fuel problem through, and wasn’t prepared for a lifetime of wood gathering. Hopefully the women will take over the job. It was more suited to their nature anyway.
          Old Bag dismissed Og’s promise with a wave of her hand. “And where will we keep all this fuel you will be gathering?” she asked. Og had no answer to such a practical problem and wisely did not attempt to offer a solution.
          Sensing that Old Bag was wavering, Og pressed his case. “We could sit around it at night and tell stories about the ancestors.” Og knew Old Bag had great reverence for the ancestors. “We could dry our clothes and heat the water. And, best of all, we can cook the meat even when it rains.”
          Old Bag looked at the coals in Og’s hand and thought about how much she’d like a cup of tea and a fire to warm her feet. Then she thought about the smoke and soot, the ashes on the floor and the piles of wood lining the walls and shook her head. “No, Og, take it away.”
          It was another 200 years before anyone raised the subject again. 

Posted by tobiash on 08/15 at 04:26 PM | Permalink
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