by Lance O. Redding -
Bobby the Blue Frog was very different from all the other frogs because he was a blue frog, and the other frogs in the Pond were all green. Oh, Bobby had seen frogs that weren’t green before, but never a blue one. Some frogs were brown, or even black, but never blue! So naturally, all the other frogs in Tadschool teased him. They made fun of him almost every day at recess time. Pretty soon, Bobby decided that something had to change! He had to prove to the other frogs that he was just as good as they were! So he challenged the green frogs to a jumping contest. All frogs are good jumpers, but some can jump even farther than normal frogs, and Bobby was hoping that this was his day. If only he could jump farther than the other frogs, then they would see that he was just like them, and they would be his friends.
When recess time came, all the frogs lined up on a line. Then Sally, a very pretty lime-green frog from the north end of the lake, said “On your mark, get set, JUMP!” Bobby closed his eyes, crouched down, tensed his muscles, and then sprang forward with all his might. When he opened his eyes his heart fell. He was not the best jumper. In fact, he was at the very back. He was the worst jumper of all.
So Bobby decided to practice. He practiced and practiced all day long. While most of the other frogs were relaxing in the nice, cool water of the pond, Bobby was on the ground, jumping and jumping and jumping.
The other frogs thought it was so funny, that they sent one of the meaner frogs up on the land to give Bobby another challenge. His name was Hank the Bullyfrog, and he wasn’t nice to Bobby at all.
“Bobby, how about we have a fly-eating contest?!”
Bobby gulped in fear. If he said no, Hank would just laugh and call him a coward. But if he said yes, and lost again, he didn’t think he could stand it! Still, he thought, he had to try. Maybe, just maybe, he could win the fly-eating contest, and then everyone would like him!
So he agreed. They went to the south of the lake, where the flies liked to live. Sally said “go” and off they went, chasing and eating as many flies as the could. The flies went wild, flying every which way, over and under and around. Bobby was having a hard time seeing them because they flew so fast. Still, he was able to catch three flies before Sally said stop. When he looked over at Hank, though, he knew he had lost. Everyone was surrounding Hank and congratulating him on his spectacular win. Bobby slipped into the water and began swimming away before anyone could see him leaving.
Suddenly, Norman, a large brown and green frog who lived on the east side of the lake called out, “Hey, Bobby’s getting away! Everyone after him!”
Bobby knew he was in trouble now. They were going to try catching him in the water, and if they did, he was sure they would tease him and push him and even dunk his head in the water. So he swam away as fast as he could. He heard the splishes and splashes of other frogs jumping in the water, and he knew they were all fast swimmers, but Bobby also loved swimming, and thought that maybe, just maybe, he could swim even faster.
The other frogs were getting close, though. He could see them, just out of the corner of his eye. So he swam even harder. Then, he spotted the reeds..