Home > 2011 Posts, About Dave > A Fairy Tale — Life in the Village

A Fairy Tale — Life in the Village

Once upon a time there was a village with some very mean and foolish people in it, and some who were not so mean or foolish.

The village went along pretty well for a long time, and most villagers who worked hard managed to do a good job taking care of their families.

But then, the mean and foolish people in the village, I’ll call them MFs for short, managed to get in charge because they promised that they could make every villager much happier and better off.

As soon as the MFs were in charge, they started to boss every one around and make a zillion silly rules and take lots of other villagers’ stuff. At the same time, though, the MFs were always shouting about how nice they were and how much better they were making the village.

Then the MFs gave some of the stuff that they took from most people to the MFs’ close friends, but shouted some more that this was because they were helping everyone, especially those who needed it most. Just give us MFs a chance to show you how great everything will be, they said. And the rest of the village gave them a chance.

Pretty soon, most people in the village, who were not MFs, saw that the nice words didn’t have anything to do with what was really going on. And that what was really going on was just mean and foolish stuff with a wrapper of pretty words.

A few of the people in the village who weren’t MFs gathered their courage and started to say that things were going wrong. As soon as that happened, a special group of MFs – let’s call them the Metrotaxuals, the Shrieking Harridans and the Seiuslugs – got very mean, much more mean than an average MF would ever be. This special group contained the most MF-like MFs of them all. And they knew that they must destroy any villager who pointed out that the MFs were not doing what they said they were doing. If this special MF group didn’t destroy their non-MF enemies, too many villagers might start to notice.

But, even though the special group of Super-MFs did all they could to hurt and destroy the villagers who spoke up – and their families, and their friends – in any way the Super-MFs could think of, more and more other villagers finally started to notice. And think. And they realized that all the village’s new, big problems really didn’t come from the people that the Super-MFs hated so much. In fact, most really bad problems came from what the MFs were doing. And the villagers managed to see this even when the MFs kept shouting everywhere in the village, day and night.

After awhile, the MFs finally realized that despite the Super-MFs doing all the Super-Foolish and Super-Mean things they could, too many villagers now saw what was really happening. And the Super-MFs panicked.

In the village, there was one word that was the worst thing to call anyone. Because of some bad things in the time of the villagers’ great grandfathers, this word was very powerful. If one villager pointed and called another villager this name, most would be so embarrassed that they stopped whatever they were doing and tried to think whether it might be true.

But the MFs, and especially the Super-MFs, were so mean and so panicked and so foolish that they started calling everyone who wasn’t an MF the very bad name. And the MFs started to do that all the time. In every situation. For any reason. They did it so much that after a couple years, that very bad name was just another silly word, no worse than a name that a bully called other children on the playground, like ‘stupid’ or ‘lame’ or ‘nerd’.

The MFs had done the opposite of what they wanted. Instead of forcing the other villagers through shame to sit back and be quiet so the MFs could do more mean and foolish stuff, they had made their Super-MF power word a silly joke, with no more impact than the witless screech of an angry parrot.

Eventually, the villagers rose up, despite the vicious, ruthless Super-MFs, and freed themselves from much of the mean and foolish stuff that the MFs did. For awhile.

The MFs who hadn’t stopped liking mean and foolish stuff were a bit quieter than before, and waited. They knew that Total MFs were destined to rule the village for the good of all. And the Super-MFs knew that some MFs would always be more equal than others. So they bided their time, waiting to strike. For the greater good.

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