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21/10/2018 / Harry Browne

Confessions of a frog trainer by Teresa Fenton

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Dear diary, thank you in advance for allowing me to offload my issues on to you. There is nowhere else I can put down all this confidential stuff except on to your willing empathic pages. You see back in my other lifetime, in the sixth century my name was Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus. I was a Roman emperor and I very much abused my position and my power. Firstly I produced some shite prompts that somehow , ad nauseam, found their way to an unfortunate group of would be writers. These so called philosophical ideas made them tear their hair out in large clumps so that within a year they were all bald and no writing whatsoever was done. On top of that I lead a life of lechery, treachery, debauchery, tyranny, trickery and gluttony. It was all very enjoyable at the time and I never suffered from even a shred of guilt.
To ensure that I did not ever get to think about any of my behaviours, I spent my spare time thinking up these philosophical ideas, such as “dwell upon the beauty of life”, “the quality of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts”, “ you have power over your mind not outside events “etc etc. This served to keep the plebs occupied and hide my own flawed life. I did not know that a day of retribution would come eventually.
One day, a long long time after my body was buried in the ground and my spirit floated upwards, a meeting of all the higher powers was held. The catalogue of my misdemeanours was read out by one of the masters and it was decided unanimously that I was to reincarnate into a life where I would have to suffer and atone each livelong day, for my past sinful life.
As I trembled before the might of these wise souls, I waited to be told my fate. I was to be a frog trainer in my next life. I did think at the time that this was not by any means the worst fate that could befall me. How wrong I was.
Each Saturday I was to collect a barrow, a barrow for God’s sake, of the said green obstreperous creatures and bring them from Donnycarney to Parnell square where each, according to their personality was to be taught a trick to perform at our annual fundraising circus, to raise funds for homeless frogs and demented trainers.
Oh my god when I think of my flock of frolicking frogs I shudder.
Rat brat scat wants to vanish down to the leap in with his pal Jemser.
Then this one must think she’s a crow as she caws CA CA over and over again
This one has an entirely red body, a red frog imagine, its red from all the belly laughs he enjoys daily as he dallies in the valley, singing his heart out. Then I have to try and manage ditsy titsy tipsy, the posh one, who, of course, is disgusted that she is being transported in a common or garden barrow when she wants a limo under her slim, green bum. That scary one is the bane of my life too Even Stephen he calls himself. Another has a friend hopalong Cassidy who treats him to lots of booze. This is pure hell.
A few rebels buy leap card, leap up on it and leap all the way into the city.
One day two of them – the singer and the noisy one, the culchie frog from the bog, were hugging and fell out in front of the luas. I didn’t bother rescuing them.
They all make croaking noise together and one slapped me in the face with his entire body! By now I am only at Artane. I know from experience that I have to leave at midnight to allow 13 hours to travel four miles!

Sometimes if there is a protest march on they all leap out in one mad blur of green limbs, and try to join in. I threaten to frog march the lot of them over to the family of pigeons in North Earl St. and let them fight it out. That sobers them up for about 30 seconds!
By now I can stand it no longer. Recently when I spotted another one of the lovely slim very deep holes that there are lots of in the city, my evil thoughts from the past reentered my head.
Ready! steady !go.! I ran at the hole and dumped the lot- barrow and all in and ran.
Sadly as I imagine that I have escaped my hell, I realise that I have not fulfilled my punishment mission in this lifetime and will have to come back once more – maybe with the even more hellish task of being a flea trainer!

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