Storytelling has been important to man since earliest times. In modern society traditional storytelling where groups of people would gather and tell stories to each other round the fireside has been replaced by stories told on television, cinema and now the Internet. Some of the old tales also had morals with important lessons about behaviour and the possible consequences of certain actions. I try to incorporate little messages in the stories I use in my shows. My Pirate and Princess Puppet Show has a lovely moral about ” not taking things that don’t belong to you ” Children learn from listening to Fables but these stories were meant for adults too. Here is one I like:
The Mouse And The Frog
On an ill-fated day a mouse made the acquaintance of a frog and they set off on their travels together. The frog pretended to be very fond of the mouse and invited him to visit the pond in which he lived. To keep his companion out of harms way the frog tied the mouse’s front foot to his own hind leg and thus they proceeded for some distance by land. When they came to the pond the frog told the mouse to trust him and be brave as he began swimming across the water. No sooner had they reached the middle of the pond than the frog suddenly plunged to the bottom, dragging the unfortunate mouse after him. Now the struggling and floundering mouse made such a commotion in the water that he managed to attract the attention of a hawk who pounced down upon the mouse and carried him away to be devoured. Since the frog was still tied to the mouse, he shared the same fate of his companion and was justly punished for his treachery.
Whoever plots the downfall of his neighbor is often betrayed by his own treachery.
Do Fables like this have any relevance today? What do you think?