One day Winnie-the-Pooh and his good friend Piglet decided to go to school. Off they went through the forest, walking together hand in hand till they reached the schoolyard. It was the first day at school. Everyone was busy getting ready for the admission to the new semester. Pooh and Piglet found themselves in a big room full of students.
Before long, the teacher came and began the class. He said, “As you all know, today’s class is very important. I will ask you questions. Your admission to school depends on your performance. First, let us start with the introductions.”
One by one the students stood up and spoke a few words about themselves. Soon it was Pooh’s turn to speak.
Pooh stood up proudly and said, “I am Winnie-the-Pooh. I live in Hundred Acre Wood. I love honey, sleep, and poetry in descending order.”
Then Piglet spoke, “I am Piglet. I love flowers and gardening. My best friend is Pooh.”
Soon the teacher started asking questions to assess the students.
The first question was, “What is the shape of the Earth?”
Pooh immediately answered, “The Earth is Pooh-shaped!”
On hearing the answer, everyone burst out laughing. The teacher said sternly, “Silence!”
It was then that Piglet spoke, “The Earth is round.”
“You are right, Piglet. Next question. What is best done while the sun shines?”
Again Pooh quickly answered, “Go sunbathing.”
There were bursts of laughter, and the teacher had to silence the class again.
Then Piglet answered, “Make hay.”
The teacher said, “Very good, Piglet. Now tell me what does the alternation of day and night reveal?”
Pooh was the first to answer this time too. “It shows the sun loves to sleep.”
Roars of laughter filled the classroom. The teacher screamed, “You dumb bear! And silence everyone!”
Then Piglet answered, “It shows that the earth rotates.”
The teacher was very impressed. “You are smart, Piglet. Now, who will answer what do empty vessels do best?”
Pooh shouted, “They hold the most honey!”
As laughter reverberated again through the class, the teacher threatened to throw out Pooh and the rest of the class with him.
Then Piglet answered, “They make the most noise.”
“Excellent. Now tell me, what has all the colours of the spectrum?”
Pooh immediately replied, “Piglet’s garden.”
This time there was silence in the classroom. Then Piglet answered, “The rainbow.”
“Very good. Last question. Who is the world’s greatest poet?”
It was Piglet who answered first. “Winnie-the-Pooh,” said Piglet. “He is also the most intelligent bear I know in the whole wide world.”
When he heard this there was a big grin on Pooh’s face. He stood up and bowed to everyone in the class. And the entire classroom was filled with both laughter and applause.
When the results for the admission came, both Pooh and Piglet were barred from entering the school ever again because of the commotion they had managed to create in the classroom on the very first day.
An occasional writer but a regular thinker, Beryl sometimes fiddles in speculative fiction. He sees both humour and tragedy in everyday events and is extremely concerned with the fate of other creatures trapped in the monstrous march of 21st-century human civilization.