Story time: The banana peel
Rameez was an extremely naughty boy. He loved to play tricks and pranks on everyone around him. His favourite trick was to scatter fake insects on the floor, under the bed sheet, in his father’s car, or hide them in the food being served to a guest and then watch them freak out.
Sometimes he would hide a monstrous plastic spider in his sister’s bed and laugh his head off when she would scream at the top of her lungs. Once he put an ugly cockroach in his grandfather’s tea-cup and watched in glee as the old man spit out the tea in horror.
Rameez had a vast collection of such bugs. Almost all his family members, school friends and teachers and even his neighbours had become victims of his pranks. They were fed up with his constant antics and often complained to his parents. His mother always told him that playing practical jokes or pranks on others that could harm them was a terrible thing to do, but Rameez never paid much heed to her words.
One day, Rameez was eating a banana on the terrace outside his house. His father had confiscated his entire collection of fake insects and he was feeling quite down in the dumps. Suddenly an idea struck him. He thought it would be great fun if he left the banana peel on the street and then watch someone slip over it. Rameez was not concerned that somebody might get hurt. He just thought that it would a very amusing spectacle to watch someone tumble head over heels over the banana peel.
After finishing his banana, he threw the banana peel on the street and then sat back to watch who would be his victim. He watched an old man with a walking stick walk by. Rameez waited with baited breath to see if he would slip but the old man passed by safely. He watched a few people come and go but no-one fell. By this time, Rameez was quite bored. He went inside and forgot all about the banana peel.
Later that evening, an ice cream man came by. Hearing the tinkle of his cart bell, Rameez rushed outside.
He bought his favourite cone ice-cream and slowly unwrapped it. As he turned back, he slipped over the banana peel that he had thrown there in the morning! The cone flew up in the air and landed on his head while he fell on the street with quite a thump. The other children in the street laughed and laughed at the comic view, while a few sympathetic ones came to his aid.
It was not much fun to become a victim of one’s own prank and Rameez felt very sorry for himself. He also felt quite ashamed of his actions as he experienced a terrible pain in his ankle and the cold ice cream dribbling down his shirt was very irritating.
From that day onwards, he became careful that no one got hurt or upset because of his actions.
His sister, though, would still find a lizard or two under her pillow sometimes!