Unfinished--What scares a cannibal?
|I have a friend who was raised by a cannibal.
Well, his nanny was a cannibal. She always maintained that she didn't eat people anymore. In Papua New Guinea most foreign workers have nannies for their kids, and Nate's parents were missionaries. I'm sure the nanny felt that Nate's folks wouldn't be in favor of leaving their son in charge of a people-eater, so she refrained from the practice.
Nate was never sure about her son, Kutu, however. He would get Nate alone and whisper, "I'm going to eat you. I'm going to eat you tomorrow."
Nate spent a lot of sleepless nights as a child. As he grew, however, he began to plan. He felt he needed to be proactive about his situation. Eat or be eaten, you know? Survival of the fittest. Stay on top of the food chain.
He needed to scare the pants off his antagonist.
But what scares a cannibal? Stew pots? Sharp teeth?
Nate took to following Kutu around. He would silently creep close to him during the hot time after lunch when most sensible people were napping. Nate would sit in a steamy, leafy place near Kutu's sleeping mat, and watch. It was easier to just sit still than move around during this time, anyway, and let the sweat drip out of you. Nate would sit and try to think stew pot thoughts into Kutu's dreams.
One day Kutu woke to find Nate staring at him.
"Where'd you come from, Appetizer?" Appetizer was the cute, new nicname he had begun using for Nate.
Nate shrugged. "I'm always here."
"I noticed." Kutu rolled over and pretended to ignore his visitor. He couldn't seem to get comfortable, though. He twitched. He stretched out an arm. He turned to his back. He opened one eye.
Nate was still there. Kutu got up and walked away.
Over the next few days, Kutu experienced nap deprivation. Every time he lay down, after carefully searching the area for any annoying small persons, he would open his eyes after only a few minutes to find Nate at his side, staring. This began to get on Kutu's nerves. He became uptight and jumpy. Nate took advantage of this.
"I think you're losing weight," Nate observed to Kutu one day, after following him to the fishing stream.
"No, I'm not," snapped Kutu, snagging his fishing line in the rocks.
"Yes, I think so," replied Nate. He shook his head. "Too bad. I didn't think it happened here."
"What? What happens?"
"At Home," said Nate, fingering his chin judiciously, "we don't really talk about it. But we notice when one of the big, tough kids starts to lose weight and look kind of sickly. We littler kids notice him and we just look at each other when he goes by, wondering who did it. Cause, you know, we get tired of the way they act."
"What do you mean?" Kutu turned around to face Nate, who was crouching on the ground at the edge of the water.
"Well, sometimes the Tough Kid thinks he can push the little kids around. Sometimes he does it once too often and. . . he gets stopped."
"I don't believe you!" Angrily, Kutu gathered up his gear and turned to stomp off.