Special Abilities

I’ve always been jealous of people who discover their talents early.

There was this kid in my middle school class named Karen. She drew still nature scenes better than anybody.

Any time the school needed pictures of flowers, vegetables, baked goods – or even background scenery for school plays – they called on Karen.

Sadly, she left school because the family moved back to their home state.

We often asked ourselves: Why did she have to leaf? Did she branch out into other types of art?

Then, there was the big question: If she specialized in painting bread only, could she make a lot of dough?

A guy named Charlie could swallow air, then burp for up to 45 seconds (we timed him). He saved his most spectacular outbursts for the cavernous auditorium. The sound echoed throughout the seats, and students broke into applause.

Charlie even bet several people that he could recite the alphabet in one burp. He mostly won, but occasionally ran out of gas at “w.”

Dan – who moved out of town in fifth grade – brought his pet parakeet Gertrude to show-and-tell.  He asked the bird questions, and Gertrude replied with short answers.

Dan even entered her in the talent show, which Gertrude won by singing “Surfer Bird.” But during that performance, a teacher noticed that the bird’s mouth never moved.

It turned out the real Gertrude had flown away, and this bird was a silent imposter. Dan spent so much time training the parakeet, he became a first-rate ventriloquist.

The judges disqualified the bird imposter for singing. But, they awarded Dan a special recognition for Fowl Sounds. 

– Do you have a story idea for Rix? E-mail him at [email protected].