Friday, December 16, 2011

Friday Challenge: Reindeer to Remember Galore!

Note:  This blog post is an entry--well, actually, this is a Series of Entries--into the Friday Challenge, which can be found here:

This week’s Challenge?  “A Reindeer to Remember.”  Provide a 120 word character sketch of one of those OTHER reindeer--you know, the ones behind the scenes, that you never seem to hear about...the ones who live in the shadows of the Famous Nine that everyone does hear about, year in and year out.

Now, I made a minor mistake with this particular Challenge.  

That mistake was to announce the details of the challenge to Lady Quill while there were munchkins within earshot.

The next thing I know, I am being bombarded with requests for rules, and details, and permission to post...and a heartfelt request to make this a homeschooling project...which, of course, was granted.  

Yes, daddy is a sucker.

So, with no further fanfare, my kids would like to present their homework assignment, and their unique and individual attempts at meeting this, their first Friday Challenge.

First up...the six year old, as transcribed verbatim by a sibling, from the spoken word:

the 4  Leg  reindeer  is  Artemus  fowl .
He  can fly.  Well   you  no  dasher and  
dancer and  prance  and   vixen  Commet and cupid and Donner and Blizen, but do you recall the most famous reindeer of all? Artemus fowl? where is a fire in Santa’s workshop there is. There is a christmas tree in Santa’s workshop, and a elf reading, and Santa writing this story. Two elves are not at the workshop. The next elf is working on a story too, we are going to send these stories to Friday challenge,but she doesn’t know what she is going to write. she didn’t know what to write. And there was music playing. What should she write?

The nine year old has a thing for the name “Artemis” as well...

Do you know who Blitzens grandson is? Well, it’s Artemis Boomer! You know how Rudolph has a special nose? Well, Artemis Boomer has a special uncontrollable voice. If you’ve seen Sky High, then it’s like that gym teacher Arnold Boomer. Well yeah, his voice was like that. Anyway Artemis Boomer loved Blitzen he had always hoped that he would grow up to be one of Santa’s reindeer, but today was different for some reason he didn’t have any energy like he used to, and for some reason neither did any of the other reindeer.Somehow all the reindeer had gotten sick. When Santa looked into the ball of Christmas he saw that a strange plague was spreading there. They died!

The ten year old went a little further afield:

             My reindeer name is school bus reindeer. He is a school  bus with hooves. He runs everywhere. He has windows. He has no driver because if you talk  into a microphone where you want to be .  You’ll be there when you are done with your  food. He has a family too.  There names are Baby Reindeer,Papa reindeer,Mama Reindeer. He is different from the others. He looks like a school bus with a head  of  a reindeer and  the hooves too.When he got back   home he ate and ate. He goes to sleep instantly because he has to go to work . When he is awake he goes to work  after  breakfast. He is really fast when he has no people it the bus.

Lady Quill decided to invent The Mother of All Reindeer:

“Grandpa, tell us about Great Aunt Tonna.”

“Tonna was Santa's plow helper many generations ago. One year, on the day before Christmas Eve Tonna looked up and saw a bright light streakin' through the sky. Her hair stood up on end, and her antlers started glowing.”

“Then what happened, Grandpa?” asked Rudolph.

“A piece of starlight landed on Tonna. It burned a hole through her fur and into her skin. Her body started to tingle. Tonna started running. Her feet lifted off the ground. She was flying! Aunt Tonna went 'round to Santa and showed him what happened. That's when she realized that Santa could understand her. She was talking, like the humans do.”

And here is mine.

The reindeer glared across the table, bleary-eyed.  “It’s all a scam, I tell you,” he said, before dropping his snout back into his feedbag.  The scent of fermented oats and holly drifted out.

“How so?” I asked.

“Rudolph is cybernetic, don’t buy into that stupid song, and don’t even ask where he keeps the batteries.  And the rest put on this big buff manly show, but come on, with names like Dasher and Prancer and Cupid?  Even the antlers are fake!”

“Why are you telling me all this?”

“Because they kicked me out!” the reindeer shouted, knocking his feedback loose.  Alcoholic oats and holly berries flew across the room.  “All because Santa couldn’t fit ‘Reynaldo’ into his stupid rhyme!”