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By Lynn Isenberg
Photo: Images by Isenberg ©
www.FocusMediaMarketing.com / www.LynnIsenberg.com
Copyright, March 22, l986 / Revised August 15,
2009, All Rights Reserved Focus Media Publishing, a
division of Focus Media, Inc.
Once upon a time, there was a special ping pong
ball named Pingy. But Pingy didn't know he was
special for a long time.
It all began at the ping pong ball factory where
Pingy was born along with hundreds and hundreds
of other ping pong balls. They were all made out of
a special kind of plastic that made them strong so
they could bounce around on ping pong tables for a
very long time.
At first, Pingy and the other ping pong balls
didn't have any shape to them at all. They were all
mixed up in a glob of hot plastic rapidly traveling
down a vat into a big metal machine. The metal
machine was made up of thousands of round holes
that looked like the contour of ping pong balls.
As the plastic flowed into the round holes, Pingy
could hear many other voices all around him
giggling with delight as they splashed down the vat.
"Weeeeee," said one little voice, "this is like a
roller coaster ride!"
"I can't wait to be a ping pong ball," said
another little voice.
"Me, too," said Pingy, "I'm going to win
championship ping pong ball tournaments!"
And at that, Pingy fell into a round metal hole to
become a ping pong ball.
Pingy didn't know it, but
the round metal hole that would give him his
circular ping pong ball shape was not perfectly
round. At the bottom of the hole, there was a small
After Pingy had dried off in the heating process,
he had become a ping pong ball. He and all the
other voices who were also now ping pong balls
were put into packages. They were shipped off to
sporting goods stores where they hoped a customer
would buy them and take them home so they could
play the game they were born to play.
Pingy was shipped to a very contemporary
sporting goods store. They had equipment for every
kind of sport imaginable. In the back of the store
there was a television monitor that would play dvds
of all kinds of sports. From up on the wall where
Pingy sat, he could watch the television. He loved
to watch the gymnastics program with its upbeat
tempos that matched the gymnasts' routines.
of course, his favorite program was the one
featuring a ping pong championship. It gave him
the opportunity to study different kinds of hops and
jumps and spins propelled by ping pong paddles
that he couldn't wait to perform.
but as he landed. When the man came home and opened the package all the balls jumped straight up and down. he swerved about and .nothing worked.4 One day a young man came in the store and bought a package of ping pong balls." he chided with delight. who was having a great deal of trouble jumping straight up in the air. "you can do it!" Pingy watched with excitement as his colleagues skipped about the table in their new-found freedom. He was very excited to leave the store and play ping pong. Pingy kept jumping off to the side and no matter how hard Pingy tried to jump up straight. Pingy.. One of the other ping pong balls was soaring high in the air. After all. that was what Pingy was made for. all that is. it was his gift in life. Pingy gathered all his strength again and sprang into the air. He kept jumping lopsidedly. Instead. Pingy was one of the balls in the package. except Pingy.. "Come on. They were overjoyed to play ping pong. almost touching the ceiling.
"What?. "I can breathe just fine.5 couldn't get himself to go straight up again." said Pingy. "Maybe it's your air pressure. one of the ping pong balls noticed an indentation in Pingy's side." cried out Pingy. oh. As he turned over. "There's a teeny. His friends continued jumping with glee. weeny indented hole in your side." asked Pingy. "why can't I jump up straight in the air?" The other ping pong balls stopped their bouncing and gathered around Pingy to see what the problem was." replied the ball. "I think I see what the problem is. "Oh." said one ball. Pingy watched with frustration." . "are you breathing alright?" "Yes." and rolled over with a tear in his eye." said the ball. "What's wrong with me?!.
"I'm not going to let an indented hole stop me. The young man. No one had the heart to tell him that he might never be able to play ping pong." the ball said." Pingy looked down and noticed the indented hole for the first time and shivered with fright at what this might mean. "Well. Pingy. The other balls sat still. who couldn't hear any of the ping pong balls' conversation. "it must be from when you born.6 "What do you mean a 'teeny. weeny indented hole in my side? How could I have a hole in me?. frowned at Pingy's lopsided leaps and brashly decided that Pingy was ." Pingy stated and with grave determination leaped into the air only to land lopsidedly again. That's what must be keeping you from bouncing straight up and down." he cried out again." Pingy asked worriedly. "How am I supposed to play ping pong if I can't jump straight up and down?!.
"Why are you crying?" . lopsidedly. he looked around him and saw that he was on a dirt road sitting among many rocks. Pingy was very hurt and feeling rejected began to cry. raspy voice asked. Pingy didn't know what to do except to slowly hop away." said the young man to himself. Pingy rolled off the road and cried. "Doesn't look like I'm going to be able to use you. a friendly. stones and pebbles.7 simply unable to play ping pong. Suddenly out of nowhere. After he had cried for a long time and had let out all his tears. The other balls watched apprehensively as the young man swiftly tossed Pingy out the window. He was afraid someone might see his defected hop and throw him away like the young man did. But the lopsided hop kept reminding him of his shattered dream to play ping pong.
Pingy silently waited until all the dust had cleared." replied the raspy voice. . He didn't want to offend whoever it was who was concerned about his tears. At that moment. When he was sure that all the dust had cleared he excitedly asked. will ya?" the voice shouted at the car. slow down. behind you. "Who said that?" "Wait till the dust clears. "Who's that?" he inquired.8 Pingy could hardly see through his tears but was overjoyed to hear a kind voice.k. He waited a long time. The raspy voice let out a raspy cough and then." answered the voice.. "Hey. "O. Pingy couldn't see past the dust and asked again. Pingy turned around and saw a rock not much bigger than himself. where are you?" "Right here. a car quickly drove by kicking up a lot of dust.
I see what you mean." "Well. "But I don't want to move around. "I sit on the side of the road and record history." and he furrowed his brows and added optimistically." Pingy said with a sad face." Pingy asked the rock. "At least you can still move around." "What does a rock do?." replied Pingy. "Hmmm. "what's your name?" "Pingy." . but I can't hop straight because of a hole in my side. The sun is shining!" "I don't know what to do. "Why are you crying. "I'm supposed to be a ping pong ball." Rocky looked at the indentation like a doctor would. I can't move unless the weather moves me or someone picks me up. if you don't want to move around you can become a rock like me. Pingy? It's a beautiful day out today. "it just reminds me that I can't play ping pong.9 "My name's Rocky. It's very important." said Pingy." said the voice.
they can study me to find out about the history of the earth. "You do? How do you record history?" "With time and patience." "Wow!" exclaimed Pingy." I let the weather erode me over many centuries and then when geologists find me. For a little awhile." "How do they do that?" "By studying my sedimentary make-up they can tell how the earth continues to change. He was very impressed. . "Well. He suddenly felt better talking to Rocky." Pingy felt a warm breeze swoosh by and smelled the grass nearby. "That is important. It's very important. "it helps them figure out the earth's future and how to predict the next glacier or earthquake.10 Pingy was impressed. he had forgotten about his indented hole." continued the rock." "What does that mean?" asked Pingy." repeated Rocky.
11 Pingy looked at Rocky and all the other stones and pebbles on the road recording history and decided that it was important to be something by doing something. he hopped lopsidedly into a puddle.!" And at that. Soon Pingy looked like a small rock sitting among the other rocks. "I'm going to be a rock. Pingy turned to Rocky and said resolutely. He said goodbye to Rocky and hopped away lopsidedly covered in mud wondering what to do. a truck drove by and almost squashed Pingy into a ping pong ball that would have had no hop at all. Pingy decided to be a small rock and sit on the road with the other rocks and smell the flowers and soak up the sun and record history. A few minutes later. Pingy became very hot and very bored. But as the sun climbed higher in the sky. . swooshed around and then sat in the sun to let the mud dry. So Pingy decided not to be a rock anymore. So. too.
. "oh. gosh. I'm sorry." Then she squinted her eyes from the sun and took a closer look at Pingy and asked. Are you a buoy that warns boats of shallow water?" ..12 Pingy needed to wash the mud off and upon coming to a lake promptly rolled in lopsidedly. I can't even get a burn!. nothing works. "I'm a ping pong ball. The buoy slowly tilted to her side and when she saw Pingy she exclaimed with a shy.no matter how hard I try to get a tan. "Excuse me. embarrassed look of surprise. even just a little bit of color. I didn't see you. "Are you some kind of new boat?" "No. I'm white as a ghost. The mud slid off and Pingy looked around and noticed there were white buoys floating in the water." she said. trying not to get water in his mouth when he spoke. "Oh." Pingy said." said Pingy. Pingy swam lopsidedly over to a pretty buoy wearing a pair of a fashionable sunglasses.
yes.13 "Well. when I'm not trying to get a tan. "well. noble thing to do. if you need any suntan oil. then said. will become a buoy. Pingy waited a long time for some boats to come by. just let me know. "that is. I." answered the buoy. "I think being a buoy is an important. He realized he had once again forgotten about the small indented hole in his side while talking to the buoy." The buoy looked at Pingy's determined face and smiled a warm welcome. impressed with Pingy's knowledge. too. Pingy smiled back and felt warm and good around the buoy. He felt the water's warm current swish below him and the sun shining on his bare little head. but none came. Then he looked at the buoy and firmly said." Pingy kindly thanked her and then swam lopsidedly over to some shallow waters where there were no buoys around. Soon Pingy began to feel ." And she laughed at her own silly humor and smiled at Pingy.
But Pingy was determined to feel useful. Pingy landed near the pretty buoy. When he finally came back to the surface. They sped by and nearly cut Pingy in half with their motor! Pingy flipped upside down and did somersaults underwater. another boat sped by and sprayed water all over Pingy making him flip up in the air and then land in the water with a bellysmacker. Pingy watched carefully as one of the boats dangerously approached his shallow water. the water calmed down. Pingy gasped for air. He thought he was going to drown! The pretty buoy had seen all this and called out to him to make sure he was o. the boaters couldn't see him.k. As dusk came. But before Pingy could answer. .14 waterlogged and his skin started to shrivel up. People came out in their boats to water ski. Pingy proudly stuck his chest out at the boat to warn the people inside that the water was too shallow. But because Pingy was so small. It looked like a piece of smooth glass.
he saw a MUSIC STORE and in the corner of the . "I think so. And Pingy slowly paddled away lopsidedly and very dizzy from all the tumbling." he said." Pingy whispered. Pingy resolved to hop lopsidedly down the road and dry off in the warm sun.k.." "I don't think it is.?" she asked with great concern. Pingy was all wet and the tears of defeat made Pingy even more wet.15 "Are you o. "goodbye. Finally. The road was windy and full of curves." replied Pingy.. As Pingy slowly and sadly turned a corner. "I like your company a lot. either. "Pingy?" asked the buoy. And I think what you're doing is noble. But I think maybe this isn't quite the right thing for you." he added. after many tears. "Au revoir. "Yes." said the buoy.
and politely asked the old man behind the counter. "Excuse me. I'm inquiring about your sign in the window. Then he said." Pingy was terribly afraid of rejection. . My name is Pingy.16 store's window read a sign that said HELP WANTED. a group of rambunctious children marched into the store for a music lesson. Pingy. tired eyes. "That's a very unique kind of bounce you got there. Pingy bounced lopsidedly into the store. but he mustered up all his courage and with great confidence asked his question again. "I'd like to know if I can be of any help to you. Pingy's hopes began to rise and ever so cautiously." The old man scratched his head and peered skeptically at Pingy through warm." At that moment. sir. smiled.
" He excused himself from the children for a few minutes and took Pingy to the back of the store where he gave Pingy a pretty red coat of paint. They smiled at him and Pingy smiled back with delight.17 The old man looked at the children. "I think I might be able use to your help. Pingy. The end… for now… . then he looked at Pingy and said. Pingy felt very handsome in his new coat. the beautiful lopsidedly bouncing red ball. The old man drew the children's music lesson on the chalkboard and asked the children to please follow Pingy. Then the old man introduced the children to Pingy.
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