Monday, April 4, 2011

The Pickle Story

When I was in Texas for Purim, the shliach's three-year-old son came over to me when he saw me, and asked if I was going to finish The Pickle Story.
I was surprised he even remembered. On Chanukah when I was there, I had started to tell him and his sister The Pickle Story, but they weren't listening and were fighting with each other instead, so I stopped. I hadn't even gotten past the title, when I stopped the story.
But apparently this little boy had remembered, and was very determined to hear the story. His mother and father both told me that I had better tell the story this time I was in town.
The little boy even called me at 9 in the evening after the Ta'anis had ended, to hear the story before he went to sleep.
I promised him I would say the story on Shabbos.
And I did. His parents made sure before the end of Shabbos to ask me if I had indeed finished the story. They wouldn't be able to handle their son's disappointment and frustration for the next five months if I hadn't.

Another time I told The Pickle Story was when I substituted for a Pre-1A class in ULY. I came at 2 o'clock, and the principal led me into the classroom. He looked for material the teacher should have provided for me, but alas. There was none.
The principal looked at me guiltily, and said, "Maybe you have a story you can say?"
I asked the class if they daven.
"We don't daven! We're only in pre-1A!" one boy told me.
I then told the class The Pickle Story for the next 2 hours, and then dismissed them at 4. The boys were all silent and listening for the whole two hours. I was impressed with their (and my) stamina.