|Dr. Pu Pong|
Pu Pong the Panda leaned his big panda back against the cold cement wall. Pu Pong had a lot of time to think, so thought to himself "Life is. . . . . Moderately adequate." And it was! Pu Pong had all the bamboo he could eat, there are people that clean up his poop and he is occasionally introduced to terrified panda women for awkward, panicked intercourse. Life was moderately adequate.
Pu Pong never really had any other ambitions than eating bamboo, forced mating and pooping. It was all he knew. When he was in the outdoors portion of his enclosure, he was watched by dozens of humans. Pu Pong liked the laughing children best, their smiling faces warmed Pu Pong's heart. Pu Pong was born in a zoo just like his mother. Pu Pong did not get to spend too much time with his mom. Which was fine, she probably would have eaten Pu Pong anyway. Living his whole life in the zoo, he never imagined the possibilities that existed for an eager panda in the outside world.
One day a new zookeeper started working in the Pu Pong's enclosure, cleaning his poop and keeping his bamboo pile overflowing. This person brought a small television and set it up in the "employees only" portion of Panda exhibit. Pu Pong had never seen a television before, its bright colors and sounds dazzled him. Pu Pong would spend hours watching show after show through the bars of his cage. The zookeeper saw that Pu Pong loved watching television and started leaving it on at night for him. The more television that Pu Pong watched the more he understood. He started to see the pictures better. At first what were multi-colored blobs, started to become recognizable shapes. He could see that there were pictures of humans inside the TV and the noises were human speak. Pu Pong understood a little bit of human speak.
Pu Pong spent night after night, watching and learning. He learned about so many things; firemen, the ocean, dogs, foot-long sandwiches, Miss Marple, cartoons, World War II and he loved all of it. Pu Pong was no longer Moderately Adequate, he was depressed. "All these wonderful things exist in the world and all I get is enslavement in cement walls being gawked at by humans." thought Pu Pong. "The whole world is just waiting for me!" Pu Pong decided to not let his bitter, caged existence limit his career choices.
Pu Pong's favorite television show was about a daring pediatrician who saves children by day and solves crimes by night. He would watch the show every evening. After several months of watching, Pu Pong decided that he was ready. He decided that he was now a Panda Pediatrician. He would help children in need with his surgeon's skill and detective's wit. If only he could get his paws on a child in need.
Pu Pong started spending a lot more time in the outdoor portion of his enclosure. There were always children watching from above his cement wall during the day. He would wave at them and invite them to come down into his enclosure. The children would just laugh and point. Pu Pong assumed that all of these children must not be ill and that is why they are not accepting his offers of free pediatric care.
One fine day, Pu Pong was eating some bamboo, when sick child jumped into Pu Pong's enclosure. "Oh Joy!" thought Pu Pong "A patient!" The people above started screaming. "The people are panicking, the boy must be very sick!" Pu Pong rushed forward and scooped the young boy into his cuddly panda arms. The child screamed and began to struggle. "I estimate the child to be about 11 years old in age, his flailing leads me to believe that the child is suffering from seizures. I must make sure that the boy does not swallow his tongue. The Doctor is in!"
The boy froze when a large, hairy, mildly poo covered panda paw forced its way into his mouth. Pu Pong gently rocked the boy back and forth. "I did it! I have cured you of your epilepsy." thought Pu Pong "Nice work Dr. Pu Pong. I better make sure the boy was not injured in the fall" With his sharp teeth and claws, Pu Pong ripped all of the clothing off of the terrified boy and carefully inspected him. "Just a few scrapes, you'll be fine lad." Pu Pong dragged the shocked, naked boy to the doorway leading to indoor portion of his enclosure. "No need to thank me boy, your good health is payment enough."
Several zookeepers entered brandishing tranquilizer guns. "No need for those gentleman, the boy is calm and healthy and no longer a public threat." The zookeepers carefully removed the stunned boy from the enclosure. The people above broke into applause. "Applause is not necessary, I'm just doing my job." thought Pu Pong "Who's the next child in need of my pediatric miracles?" Pu Pong laid back against the cement wall waiting for his next patient to tumble into his cage, content.