It is Friday, and I am grateful. I’ve been debating which story to finish and send today, and I finally settled on doing the story for “Up.” I think “Up” is my favorite movie of all the nominations this year. Those Pixar folks sure know how to tell great stories.
Adventurer Charles Muntz learned a great deal as he was falling through to the ground. First, he learned that he *really* didn’t like falling. Second, he learned what his faithful dogs had experienced when they had plummeted to the ground, and it wasn’t the least bit pleasant. Third, he learned that he really didn’t care much for Kevin anymore, and she could just disappear off the map. Fourth, his obsession with capturing Kevin hardly mattered any more. His fastuous temperament evaporating in the winds of free fall, Muntz became a much more humble and grateful person.
Usually, a “death fall” epiphany and repentance would be a short lived achievement, and the story would end here. However, as a person who lived in an airship, Muntz already knew that gravity is a harsh mistress, so he always wore a parachute, which he opened at the appropriate time. It also meant that the lessons he learned as he was falling would actually be of some use.
As he arrived safely on the ground, he resolved that forever forward he would wear the cone of shame as a visual representation of his guilty conscience. He decided he would devote his remaining years to helping all canines, to repay the heroic loyalty of the dogs that had served him.
He refined his doggy speech translator collars, and found a way to bring them to the mass market for a very reasonable price. He founded a free vet clinic for all dogs and dog owners to get competent medical care at no cost. He also has founded a canine college to teach dogs to read. So far, the dogs have been unable to read a complete sentence, due to the unfortunate number of windows in the building, which faced a squirrel infested grove. Contractors would be replacing the windows next spring.
Muntz’s current projects include inventing a way for dogs to use hand tools, including writing implements, and a design for a flushing dog toilet. These projects are not going well. Despite this, Muntz was happier than he had ever been. He was surrounded by canine companions and his passion, tempered into moderation, was achieving real results that they were positive and satisfying to all parties.
True to his word, Charles Muntz never removed his collar of shame, even though he admitted it was a problem at night when he tried to sleep. And, sleep is where death finally claimed him, at the age of 102.
Have a great weekend, everyone.
fastuous / FAST – you – us / haughty, arrogant; ostentatious, showy.