A Story Especially for Boys Based on Armenia’s Proverb:
Cultivator and Couch Potato
Mama and Papa Porcupine have two little porcupines:
Cultivator and Couch Potato.
Cultivator plants the seeds of good thoughts everyday. He reads good books, listens to good music and plays with good friends.
Couch Potato never plants any seeds at all. Instead he plays video games, watches television and sits on the couch with a bag of potato chips. Little by little the weeds of idleness, indecision and sadness start to grow in Couch Potato’s mind.
All day, good words pop out of Cultivator’s mouth from the seeds of good thoughts, he plants.
Cultivator talks about books. Cultivator sings songs. Cultivator laughs with his friends.
Cultivator plants the seeds of a healthy breakfast: yogurt, a cucumber tomato sandwich and eggs.
Couch Potato eats candy for breakfast and the weeds continue to grow.
Papa Porcupine asks, “Who will come with me to the market in Yerevan?”
Cultivator says, “I will.”
Couch Potato says, “Do I have to? I’m tired. I don’t feel good.”
All day, the weeds spread through Couch Potato’s mind.
Cultivator sees three Cornelian cherry plants at the market.
“Papa, do I have enough dram to buy three plants?”
Papa Porcupine says, “Yes, and in three years you will have enough cherries to make jam.”
Cultivator buys the plants and invites his friends over to help dig the holes.
“Couch Potato, will you help, too? Digging is fun!”
“No way. I don’t want to miss my television show.”
Cultivator and his friends dig, plant and water the new Cornelian cherry plants.
Afterwards, Mama Porcupine brings out baklava as a reward for their hard work.
Cultivator and his friends continue to fertilize, water and prune the little Cornelian cherry trees for the next three years.
Couch Potato continues to play video games, watch television and sit on the couch with a bag of potato chips for the next three years.
Guess who has fun?
Guess who has none?
Three years later, Cultivator and his friends harvest the most beautiful luscious cherries. They make the most delicious homemade cherry jam. They make so much jam, they open their own Cheery Cherry Jam Shop!
Couch Potato looks up from his couch and says, “I want some, and I want to join the fun.”
Papa Porcupine says, “Whatever you sow, that’s what you’ll reap. Begin planting and you will reap the rewards.”
“Will you take me to the market too?”
Couch Potato picks out apple trees.
Then Couch Potato plants the apple trees. He fertilizes, waters and prunes his little apple trees. You can even find his Apple Chunk Cake Shop right next to his brother’s Cheery Cherry Jam Shop. And do you know what? He isn’t Couch Potato anymore. He’s called Mr. Planter and he’s the life of every party.
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