The Wigged Frog

This was my Random Question in the profile, but it wouldn’t let me have it be this long.

There was a frog who was very kind. He was so kind, he would give anything of himself to anyone who asked it of him. He was an unusual creature, however. Unlike many frogs, he had been born with a golden head of hair. This made him the envy of all the frogs in his pond. Admittedly, the hair was an inconvenience for him when he was swimming. It would float in front of his eyes, so that he could not see. But the frog was proud; he would never tell this to the other frogs in the pond who teased him about his golden hair. He wore it as though it were a crown.

One day, a child came to the pond. This child looked mighty sad. The frog swam over to the child, his hair wafting behind him in the pond. He thought perhaps he could help. After all, he was a kind frog.

The frog said to the sad child:

“Child, what is the matter? You have weary eyes. You have torn clothing. You are thin. You do not look like a happy child.”

The child, not surprised by the talking frog, said:

“Oh dear, I am worn from the world. My mother is so sick. She cannot work anymore because of her illness, and so we are hungry. We have run out of wood for our fireplace at home, and so we are cold every night. The worst is that her sickness makes her shiver so each night, and no blanket will keep her warm.

“Oh my dear child, those are mighty problems indeed,” said the frog. “Meet me here in two days, and I will have answers to your problems, I am sure of it.”

The child smiled, and skipped away from the pond, promising to return in two days.

The frog thought hard the rest of the day. He could easily teach the boy to fish from the pond to provide food for the family. That would solve the problem of hunger.

The frog also would teach the boy to fell small trees for wood for the fire at home.

But as for the mother’s need for a blanket, the frog was stumped.

The frog swam back and forth and back and forth through the pond all night lond. How would he help this child and the child’s mother? The frog’s golden hair kept getting into his eyes as he swam.

And then he realized what he needed to do: The frog would weave a blanket out of his golden hair.

And so the frog spent the next day plucking each strand of hair out of his head. There were thousand upon thousands of hairs he collected.

Next, he began weaving them, carefully, into a blanket for the child’s mother.

The next day, the child returned. The frog discussed with him how to help his situation.

“Child: I have thought about your problems. To feed your family, first, you must learn to fish from this pond.”

And so the child learned to fish.

“Child, I have solved the problem of wood for your cookstove at home. You must learn to cut small trees to take home to burn.”

And so the child learned to cut small trees.

“Child, I have one last thing for you,” the frog said.

With that, the frog gave the child the golden hair blanket. The child saw that the frog was now completely bald.

“Child, you must use this to cover your mother at night and keep her warm. Go now and try it!”

And the child did.

The frog went back to swimming in the pond. Without the golden hair, he could certainly see better. But his head was terribly cold in then pond water. Other frogs swam with him, and invited him to frog gatherings. He had many more friends, now that he was bald. He fit in with everyone, because all the other frogs were bald, too.

The frog should have been happy. But he was not.

The frog missed his golden hair. And so he did not go to the frog parties. He did not want to be friends with the other frogs, who only liked him now that he was bald, and did not like him when he had hair, and was happy.

Some time later, the frog was swimming in the pond alone. He peered up through the pond water, to see a happy child standing at the water’s edge.

He swam up, wanting to see what happiness felt like. And he recognized the face!

It was the child he had helped so long ago.

“Child! the frog cried. “Tell me how you look so happy. Tell me how you have gotten so round, and clean and full of cheer.”

“Frog! the child said. “I have fished, and become full. I have cut trees and kept my home warm. What you taught me has brought life to my family.”

“Oh that is a joy,” the frog said.

“But dear frog,” the child said, leaning down, “The most important thing you gave me was the blanket. The warmth from it saved my mother. I do not know if I can ever repay you.”

“Oh child,” the frog said. “Your happiness is repayment enough.”

“Frog,” the child said, “If I may say so, your eyes look sad. What has happened to you?”

“Child, I’m afraid I’ve given you something I treasured more than I thought. But it is no matter! You are well and full and happy, and I am happy for you!”

With that, the frog swam away.

The child, puzzled, walked away from the pond. He was so grateful to the frog, and did not wish to see him sad. He wanted to help the frog, as the frog had helped him.

The child thought and walked for two days. How could he help his friend, the frog?

He then had an idea.

Two days later, the child returned to the pond.

“Frog! he shouted. “I’ve got something for you!”

The frog slowly swam to the waters edge, looking sad and tired.

“Ah child! I am glad to see you. How are you?” asked the frog.

“That does not matter. Come see what I’ve got now,” the child answered.

The frog swam up to the shore and sat next to the child. The child gave him a box.

“Open it!” he whispered.

And so the frog did.

Inside it was a shining red wig. Oh it was the most splendid thing the frog had ever seen. It was thick, it was lustrous, it was the perfect fit.

“For me?” the frog gasped.

“Yes!” the child answered. “Now please, put it on and swim! Be happy again.”

The frog did. He swam. The hair fanned out all around him in the pond, getting into his eyes, and he did not care. He was crowned again.

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