The Tortoise and The Eagle

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For hours, a tortoise looked up to admire the flight of the most beautiful eagle soaring through the skies with grace and ease. He had always been envious of flight, after all, he had been a low to the ground, crawling reptile for the last 79 years. As the eagle landed, the tortoise shouted, “Bravo, eagle, bravo.”


The eagle took notice and descended on a branch just above the tortoise. “Why thank you, it’s nice to know that I have a fan.” The tortoise was taken aback, for he thought an eagle this beautiful had to be female. It didn’t matter; he was still beautiful.

“You don’t know the half of it. I want you to teach me how to fly.” The tortoise extended his scaly head from his hard tan shell.

The eagle laughed, “Why, you must be delirious. Tortoises don’t fly, as surely as eagles don’t crawl on their belly. Anything else would defy the laws of nature.”

The tortoise was offended. “I feel sorry for you, eagle. You must lead a sad life, content for no reason. One who can’t dream can never empathize with a dreamer. I understand how you can so easily stomp mine to the ground.”

The eagle stopped laughing, as the words of the tortoise stung like needles upon needles, very reminiscent of an argument he had with an ex-girlfriend. “You’re right. That was a classic dick move. I’ll teach you how to fly. Who am I to put down someone else’s dream? I have dreams too, you know. I wish to rob banks one day.”

The eagle took the heavy tortoise in its talons and flew into the air. “The first thing you need to know is how to ride the currents.”

The tortoise nodded, “Yeah, yeah. I get it. I’ve done this in my mind a million times. I’m ready to fly. Let me go.”

And let go the eagle did. The tortoise flapped its short arms and at no point did he defy gravity. Instead, he plummeted to the earth with a sickening thud splash. The eagle did everything it could to not say I told you so.

MORAL: You can’t have everything.

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