Ms. Sue Has No Clue! (3 page)

“I can't fit a watermelon in my mouth!” said my mom.

“Then you have to pay a dollar,” said Ms. Coco.

My mom handed Ms. Coco a dollar.

Fund-raising is weird.

4
We Have a Winner!

“Five hundred dollars!” Ms. Sue yelled into her bullhorn as she put more money into the money box. “We have now raised
five hundred dollars
!”

Everybody let out a whoop, and a new line was drawn on the giant thermometer.

My parents wanted to go bid on some boring stuff at the silent auction. My sister went running off to hang out with her friends. Dad gave me ten dollars and said I could walk around with my friends.

They weren't hard to find. There was a section of cool games for kids to play, so I ran over. Ryan, Michael, Neil, and Alexia were there. So was Little Miss I-Know-Everything and her crybaby friend, Emily.

“Let's play water balloon toss!” Ryan said.

Our speech teacher, Miss Laney, was at the water balloon toss. She was poking her face through a hole in a shower curtain with a drawing of a clown on it.

“Betcha can't hit me, A.J.!” Miss Laney yelled.

“Betcha I
can
!” I yelled back.

“Water balloon tossing is violent,” said Andrea. “I don't think it's very nice to throw objects at people. It's not a good message to send to children.”

“Can you possibly be more boring?” I said to Andrea as I grabbed a big purple water balloon.

“This will cost you one dollar, A.J.,” Miss Laney said.

“What?!”

“It's a
fund-raiser
!” Michael told me. “The whole point of the carnival is to make money for the school.”

I pulled a dollar out of my pocket and put it in the bowl on the table. Then I picked up a water balloon and chucked it at Miss Laney.

I missed.

“Ha-ha!” yelled Miss Laney. “Nah-nah-nah boo-boo! Want to try again, A.J.?”

“Yeah!” I yelled, grabbing for another water balloon.

“One dollar, please,” said Miss Laney.

I put another dollar in the bowl. Then I picked up a water balloon and threw it even harder at Miss Laney.

I missed.

“Ha-ha! You stink!” Miss Laney yelled at me. Then she stuck out her tongue and made funny noises.

“Are you gonna take that, A.J.?” Neil the nude kid said.

I took another dollar out of my pocket and put it in the bowl. This time I took careful aim, threw the water balloon a little softer, and hit Miss Laney right on the nose.

Splat!
The water balloon exploded, and she was soaked.

“In your face!” I yelled, and everybody cheered.

“We have a winner!” Miss Laney said as she toweled off.

“What do I win?”

Miss Laney reached under the table and came up with a plastic bag filled with water. It took me a few seconds to realize there was something else inside the bag.

“You win a goldfish!” said Miss Laney.

Goldfish are cool.

“I will name him Fishy,” I said as I took the plastic bag. “Fishy T. Fish. The
T
stands for ‘The.' He will be my new friend.”

5
Something Smells Fishy

“One thousand dollars!” Ms. Sue hollered into her bullhorn. “We have now raised one
thousand
dollars!”

Everybody whooped, and a new line was drawn on the giant thermometer. Ms. Sue put more money into the money box.

Me and the gang walked around to play some of the other games. Ryan played ring toss. Michael threw Ping-Pong balls into paper cups. We all jumped up and down in the Moon Bounce, even Fishy T. Fish.

This was the best day of my life!

We were waiting in line to play shuffleboard when I noticed that Fishy T. Fish didn't look very good. He was floating upside down in the plastic bag.

“Dude,” Neil the nude kid said, “I think your goldfish may be dead.”

“What?! How can he be dead? I just got him.”

“Goldfish don't live very long,” said Andrea. “I read that in the encyclopedia.”

“I only had him for five minutes!” I complained.

“Yeah, but you don't know how long he was alive before Miss Laney gave him to you,” Michael told me.

“What do you expect, A.J.?” asked Ryan. “He's in a plastic bag. If
we
lived in plastic bags, we wouldn't live very long either. Look at him. He can't breathe in there.”

“Fish don't breathe
air
, dumbhead,” said Andrea. “They use their gills to get oxygen from the water.”

“So does your
face
,” I told Andrea.

“Oh, snap!” said Ryan.

“Stop arguing about it!” Emily said. “Fishy is dying! We've got to
do
something!”

Sheesh! Get a grip!

“What do you want
me
to do,” I asked, “give mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to a
fish
?”

“That would be gross,” said Alexia.

“Giving mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to
anybody
is gross,” said Michael.

“Maybe two fish could give mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to each
other
,” suggested Neil.

That would be weird.

We all rushed back to Miss Laney's booth to see if she could help us. She was wiping her face with a towel. I told her what happened to Fishy T. Fish.

“You need to talk to Ms. Sue,” she told me. “She bought all the prizes.”

We ran all over the carnival looking for Ms. Sue. Finally, we found her.

“I wish to register a complaint,” I told her. “I won this goldfish just five minutes ago.”

“Is something wrong with him?” Ms. Sue asked.

“I'll tell you what's wrong with him,” I told her. “He's dead.”

“No, no, he's not dead,” Ms. Sue said. “He's resting.”
*

“He's not resting,” I told her. “He's
dead
.”

“Look, I think he's doing the backstroke,” said Ms. Sue. “Isn't that adorable?”

“Mom!” shouted Alexia. “He's not doing the backstroke! He's dead!”

Usually, I'm very respectful to grown-ups. But Ms. Sue was getting me really mad.

“I know a dead goldfish when I see one,” I told her. “And I'm looking at one right now. This is an
ex
-goldfish.”

“Okay, okay, maybe he
is
dead,” agreed Ms. Sue. “You didn't take him into the Moon Bounce, did you?”

“I want my dollar back!” I demanded.

“I'm sorry, A.J.,” Ms. Sue told me. “We're running behind on the fund-raising, and we need every dollar for the new playground equipment. But I'll tell you what I can do. I'll get you a new fish to replace Fishy. Would that be all right?”

“Well . . . okay.”

“Good,” Ms. Sue said. “That will cost you one dollar.”

WHAT?!

6
Cowabunga!

I decided not to buy another fish from Ms. Sue. If that one died, I'd be stuck with
two
dead fish. And I hate dead fish.

Me and the gang played a few more games, and then Ms. Sue announced that we had raised two thousand dollars. We all whooped and hollered.

“Everybody come over to the soccer field,” Ms. Sue shouted into her bullhorn. “It's time to play bingo!”

“I love bingo!” we all yelled.

We rushed over to the soccer field. It was weird, because there was an orange plastic fence around the field. The grass was marked off like a big checkerboard with white chalk lines.

“How do you play bingo on a soccer field?” I asked.

“Beats me,” said Ryan.

Some of the parents set up drums and other musical instruments, and they started to play oldies from a million hundred years ago. That's when the most amazing thing in the history of the world happened. A truck drove up to the field, and it was pulling a trailer.

Ms. Sue opened the door of the trailer. And do you know what walked out of it?

A cow!

“This is Dr. Moo,” announced Ms. Sue. “Welcome to Cow Pie Bingo!”

“I didn't know that cows ate pie,” I said.

“They
don't
, dumbhead,” said Andrea. “Cow pies are poops.”

“Your
face
is a poop,” I told Andrea.

“Oh, snap!” said Ryan.

“Here's how we play Cow Pie Bingo,” said Ms. Sue. “You folks each get to buy one square of the soccer field for twenty dollars. If Dr. Moo drops a cow pie on your square, you win a hundred dollars. The rest of the money goes to the school.”

It sounded like the weirdest game in the history of the world, but all the grown-ups ran over to the ticket booth like they were giving away gold or something. Even my parents bought a square of the soccer field.

“Put your money on a square, any square!” shouted Ms. Sue into the bullhorn.

“This game sounds a lot like gambling,” said Little Miss Perfect. “I'm not sure that's a good message to send to children.”

“Can you possibly be more boring?” I said.

“Where do you think Ms. Sue got that cow?” Michael asked.

“My mom got it from Rent-A-Cow,” Alexia told him. “You can rent anything.”

After all the grown-ups got their tickets, Ms. Sue brought Dr. Moo out to the middle of the soccer field.

“Let the game begin!” shouted Ms. Sue as she released the cow.

All the grown-ups started chanting and cheering for Dr. Moo to poop on their square. It was hilarious.

“Poop on number six!” somebody shouted. “I could use a hundred bucks.”

“No, poop on number ten!” shouted somebody else.

“Poop on number two, Dr. Moo!”

Dr. Moo just stood there. Everyone was on pins and needles.

Well, not really. We were sitting on the bleachers. If we were on pins and needles, it would have hurt. But everyone was watching Dr. Moo. He was standing in the middle of the field eating grass. It was exciting!

Well, it was exciting for about a minute. After that, it was just a crowd of people watching a cow stand in the middle of a soccer field eating grass.

“Mooooooo,”
mooed Dr. Moo.

“What if Dr. Moo doesn't poop at all?” somebody yelled.

“Oh, he'll poop,” Ms. Sue replied. “They fed him just before bringing him over here.”

“What if he poops on a line between two squares?” somebody asked.

“I am the Official Pie Inspector,” said Ms. Sue. “I will determine which square has the most cow pie on it.”

Dr. Moo took a few steps, and everyone got excited again. The parents with the musical instruments started playing a song. It was a weird song. Dr. Moo stared at the sky for a few minutes. He took a step forward. Then he took a step backward. Then he chewed for a while.

“Mooooooo,”
mooed Dr. Moo.

If you ask me, Cow Pie Bingo is the most boring game in the history of the world.

“This would be a good time for you folks to buy some lemonade and cupcakes,” shouted Ms. Sue into her bullhorn.

It took about a million hundred hours, but
finally
something dropped out of Dr. Moo's behind.

“We have a cow pie sighting!” Ms. Sue shouted excitedly as she ran over to inspect it. “It landed on . . . square number twenty!”

“That's mine!” some guy shouted, jumping up and down. “I win!”

The guy got his hundred dollars, and everybody cheered as he had his picture taken with Dr. Moo.

Ms. Sue told us that Cow Pie Bingo had raised another thousand dollars for the school. She put the money into the money box.

I looked at the giant thermometer. We were up to three thousand dollars now—more than halfway there. We needed just two thousand more dollars if we wanted to get the playground equipment and have Mr. Klutz spend a night in jail.
*

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