Previous superfudge part 18.
Every day Fudge brought home paintings from his kindergarten class. Mom hung them on the wall in the kitchen. One night she said, “Fudgie, you’re doing so well in school, I’m going to get you a special treat. What would you like?”
“A bird,” Fudge said, as if he’d been thinking about it for years.
“A bird?” Mom repeated.
“Yes. My very own bird.”
“A bird,” Dad said, stratching his new beard.
“I was thinking more in terms of a yo-yo,” Mom said.
“I have a yo-yo,” Fudge told her. “But I don’t have a bird.”
“I don’t see why we can’t get Fudge a bird,” Dad said. “It might be nice for him to have his own pet.”
“But, warren,” Mom said. “Do you really think he’s ready for his own pet?”
“Yes,” Dad said. “I do.”
“Well…” Mom said, and I could see her thinking it over, “if it’s all right with Daddy, then it’s all right with me.”
“And he can sleep in my room, right?” Fudge asked.
“Yes,” Dad said.
“On my bed?”
“No,” Dad said. “Birds sleep in cages, not beds.”
“But I would be very careful,” Fudge said. “I would keep him under the covers with me.” “Birds can’t sleep in beds,” Mom said.
“Why not?” Fudge asked.
“Because they like to sleep standing up,” Mom said.
“They do?” Fudge asked.
“I think I’ll try that tonight,” Fudge said.
“People lie down to go to sleep,” Dad explained. “Birds stand up. That’s just one difference between people and birds.”
“Another is that birds can fly… right?” Fudge asked.
“That’s right,” Dad said.
“Someday I might be able to fly… just like a bird!”
“Don’t count on it,” I said.
But he wasn’t listening. He was dancing around Tootsie’s high chair singing, “My very own bird, bird, bird…”
“Da ba,” Tootsie said, tossing her rattle to the floor. That’s her latest game. She throws down her toys, then screams until one of us picks them up for her. As soon as she has them back, she throws them down again. Some game!
Also, she’s teething, so her gums are sore, so she screams a lot. She has this plastic teething ring that we keep in the freezer for her. Ahe likes to bite on it. The cold numbs her gums.
The truth is, she’ll bite on anything she can get into her mouth, including her toes. I keep telling my mother that it’s not a good idea to let Tootsie grow up with her feet in her mouth. But mom says it’s just a phase and that she’ll get over it. She even took out the family photo album to show me a picture of myself when I was about Tootsie’s age. I had my toes in my mouth, too.
I’ve asked Mom to get rid of that picture, along with the one of me naked, holding a brom. If that one ever got out, I’d never hear the end of it.
Fudge asked Mom if he could bring Tootsie to school for show and tell. He wanted to repeat his lecture on How Babies Are Made for his kindergarten class. Mom phoned Ms. Ziff, who thought it was a wonderful idea, but before they ent ahead with it, Ms. Ziff had to check it out with Mr. Green. Mr. Green said absolutely not, so that was the end of that. Fudge was disappointed, but Mom and Dad convinced him that once he got his bird, he’d have something even more exciting for Show and Tell.
Next superfudge part 20.