Billy has an entire room full of toys, but he is fascinated with Buddy's toys. He knows a few of Buddy's favorites, since they are always laying around. But today Buddy dragged out an old toy that he rarely plays with. It's a little clunky for him, not his favorite and really it requires me to play with him.
This is no ordinary zebra. This is a big, stuffed zebra with rope handles on both of its sides. It has stubby arms and legs, perfect for chewing. And a big fluffy nose, perfect for tearing at. All in all, it's a perfect tug-o-war toy with the handles for me to hold on to and the limbs and nose for Buddy to attack.
Well, Buddy just HAD to have Zebra today. He pulled it out and dropped it at my feet expectantly. So, Billy ran over and snatched it up. He hugged it and cuddled with the slobbery, chewed-upon dog toy. Yup.
"Give Buddy his toy."
"No!" He ran away cuddling the Zebra.
Buddy began barking furiously in his high-pitched,"I'm not getting what I want!" bark. You know, like Billy's high-pitched "I'm not getting what I want!" cry.
I took the toy from Billy and gave it to Buddy. This started Billy shrieking. You know, that aforementioned cry. Dilemma: Buddy gets his toy and Billy shrieks; Billy gets the toy and and Buddy barks like crazy. I'm suddenly reminded of the parable about cutting it in half...
So, Billy got the toy back. But Buddy had decided to play tug-o-war with Billy if he couldn't have the toy by himself. Buddy is totally on the Share Wagon. He tried to tug and tug and yank it free. But Billy missed that wagon. He clung to it tighter and shrieked louder.
"It's Buddy's toy. You have to let him have it."
Rinse. Repeat. Yeah, that went on for several minutes.
Then, in a huff over Buddy's barking and my refusal to come to his aid, Billy threw the Zebra with all of his might. Buddy bounded after it and brought it right back to Billy. Oh, wait... Buddy will play with me? This got Billy into throwing it a few times. But then he gave up on the throwing and just let Buddy have the toy.
Poor Buddy. His payment for getting his toy back was to be chased around the room in an endless game of tag. Billy would run up, "tag him" by slapping his back and cause Buddy to run away. Then Billy ran after him and repeated once Buddy was temporarily cornered. I had to separate them with a baby gate. Which brought on more shrieking from Billy until he saw his bouncy ball.
And that is the tale of the Zebra.