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A Fun Zoo Game

Dictated by Owen, age 8

The other day Justy, Caleb, Deirdre and I were playing a zoo game. At first I was being an animal–I was being a bear! And Deirdre was being a tiger. Caleb and Justy were being the zookeeper and cleaners. First I was a little bear and they were feeding me things like honey, which was like little toys that were yellow, and jars that they pretended were jars of honey. And they also fed me a little cup-ish toy that we pretended was full of water. They also gave a little jar full of blue roundish things–things like abacus beads and blue legos–that they pretended were blueberries.

I was acting like a bear by not eating politely like a human. I stuck my head in there and gobbled all the honey up and threw the container out of the cage. Justy said, “Mm–that’s a pretty un-polite bear,” disapprovingly. Caleb said in a very glad voice, “I like that bear!” At that point Justy was cleaning all the cages. And we always pretend that the couches are cages. And Justy kept taking out the cushions of the couch and cleaning them–sweeping and things like that.

And then when Justy got to my cage, he said “Prepare to move, prepare to move, or I’ll broom you with my broom!” [Ed: the phrase is being used to mean swat him with the broom.] And then he said, “Oh wait a minute, not quite yet.” and did something else. And then, when he did really lift up the cushion, I’d go galloping away making bear growly noises, very frightened. Meanwhile, Caleb the zookeeper was not doing so good. He was always getting in the way of Justin the zoo cleaner. And he was basically going around and keeping the animals company and hopping in the cages.

Later on in the game, I was the trainer, and Justy was the trainer too, and Caleb and Deirdre were animals. Caleb and Deirdre were tigers. I gave Deirdre a lamb to be her prey. Deirdre gobbled it down and I had to go away to get some animal food. (But really truly I had to go away to do dishes.) And while I was gone, Justy was giving Deirdre a different lamb to eat. Deirdre said, “What should I do wiv it?” And Justy said, “Eat it or keep it!” And Deirdre said, “I wanna keep it!” And then I came back, and I heard Deirdre say that, and so I said, “If you wanna keep it, you’ll have to feed it!” and I gave her some grass.