The young man and the enchanted bulb

by simon

Once upon a time there was a young man who lived with his family in Cowbridge.

Being a good natured lad, he always helped around the house and worked in the local abattoir to help feed the family. However, the family were vegan and he often fainted at the sight of blood.

One rainy afternoon, after fainting in work again, the young man was walking home when an old man appeared out of nowhere in a gondola and asked, “young man, I am but a poor old man from Venice who has lost his way, do you have any food? I can reward you with a gift that is the real McCoy.”

“Yes sir,” the young man replied. “I have a pocket full of kidneys from work that I will not eat, you can make a delicious supper with them, although I require no reward.” The young man took out the kidneys and promptly fainted on the spot.

Ten minutes later, the young man woke up but the old man had vanished along with the heavy rain for it had been replaced by a light drizzle to add to his discomfort. The only evidence of the old mans existence were three small bulbs left as a thank you. He pocketed the bulbs and scurried home.

“You stupid boy” hissed his mother.

“What are we going to do with three bulbs you idiot?” shouted his brother.

After an awkward silence, the young man ran upstairs to bed in disgrace but not before exfoliating because you really should look after your skin. His brother threw the bulbs into the garden with reckless abandon.

“Now you’ve done it! I don’t know what you’ve done but you’ve definitely done it!” Screamed his mother to the sleepy young man the next morning.

The young man ignored her, yawned, climbed out of bed and walked over to the open window where his brother stood with a look of astonishment and his mouth agape. In the garden were now three giant crisps protruding from the soil that were so tall they touched the heavens.

Fed up of his mother’s constant nagging and his brothers staring, the young man ran downstairs, opened the back door and immediately started to climb one of the giant crisps. He made a mental note that it was ready salted. His thighs burnt, his hands were sore, the air was getting thinner but he continued to climb.

After several minutes the young man could feel the eyes of his neighbours on him. He could hear shouting. Possibly shouts of encouragement. He could hear laughing. Jealousy he thought. It spurred him on. He would conquer the crisp today or possibly tomorrow if his shift pattern changed. He had to reach the top. Untold glories await. Ignoring the voices below he continued to climb higher.

His family couldn’t watch. They didn’t watch.

It was then that the young man realised he had climbed out of bed naked.