'Bullfrog Pops'

Story Time

January 26, 2000|By Rick Walton

Editor's note: A hungry bullfrog hops into town and tries to eat everything in sight.

Once there was a bullfrog who hopped...

a stagecoach and rode far away. After many miles, he came to the town of Ravenous Gulch.

Bullfrog was hot. He was dirty. He had not showered in many days. And he smelled...

...PIZZA! Bullfrog was HUNGRY! All he'd eaten for days was one horsefly.

He followed his nose to a sidewalk cafe where a man sat eating a large, hot pizza.

"Name's Bullfrog," said Bullfrog. "Mind if I have a bite?"

"I'm Starvin' Marvin," said the pizza eater. He held out his pizza. "Eat...

...your heart out, Bullfrog. You're gettin' none of this!"

"That's not neighborly," said Bullfrog, and he grabbed the pizza and leapt away.

"Give me back my pizza, you ornery varmint!" yelled Starvin' Marvin. He chased Bullfrog. Bullfrog tried to hide...

...the pizza, but it was too big to hide, so he ate it. "Mmmmmm! Riburp!"

"You pickle-skinned pizza thief!" yelled Starvin' Marvin.

"I'm still hungry!" yelled Bullfrog, as he leaped over Starvin' Marvin and hopped away.

Bullfrog hopped to a garden where there was a large watermelon. Bullfrog loved watermelon so he picked it.

"HEY, YOU MELON-FILCHIN' FLY TRAP! PUT THAT DOWN!" said an old man with a pitchfork, running toward Bullfrog. Behind him was Starvin' Marvin. Bullfrog dashed...

...the watermelon to the ground and gobbled up the juicy insides. As the gardener and Starvin' Marvin drew closer, Bullfrog leaped off.

"STOP HIM!" yelled the men.

"I'M STILL HUNGRY!" yelled Bullfrog.

He hopped until he came to a bakery.

"Ahhh! Bread!" said Bullfrog, and he grabbed an armload and leaped out the door. Then he heard the order. "HIT THE DIRT, YOU LOAF-LIFTIN' COUSIN TO A GRASSHOPPER!"

Bullfrog turned. The baker was aiming a slingshot at him. Bullfrog dropped...

...the bread, all but one big loaf, which he ate as he raced down the street.

Bullfrog hopped until he came to the Ravenous Gulch Fine Groceries, Fine Dining and Fine Art Emporium. The food inside smelled so good. He hopped inside and looked out the door and down the street. A crowd of people was racing toward him, waving weapons.

"Oh no!" said Bullfrog, and he bolted...

...the door shut and began to eat.

He threw everything he could find into his mouth. Hot dogs and hot tamales. French fries and fried chicken. Soda pop and popcorn. Potato chips, chocolate chips, even wood chips.

And then Bullfrog noticed he wasn't alone. Sitting quietly at one of the tables was the sheriff, who stood up and rested his hand on his holster.

"Bullfrog," he said, "draw...

...up a chair to my table and let's talk." Bullfrog sat down.

"Now Bullfrog," said the Sheriff, "what you've been doin' is serious."

"I see," said Bullfrog. "I see...

...DOUGHNUTS!" And he grabbed one off the sheriff's plate and ate it.

The door burst open.

"Where's my food?" roared Starvin' Marvin. "How am I supposed to practice for the County Super Eater Contest?" Starvin' Marvin grabbed a doughnut off the floor and stuffed it in his mouth. He began to choke...

...Bullfrog.

"STOP!" yelled the sheriff. "You're not thinkin' straight here, Marvin. For twenty years you've tried to win that eatin' contest, and we're mighty grateful for your effort. But you've never won. This year, though," said the sheriff, "we're gonna enter someone new, someone who can out-eat anyone in the county. Why he can out-eat anyone in the state and probably the whole country. Marvin, Bullfrog's gonna' put Ravenous Gulch on the map!"

As the sheriff spoke, the townsfolk gathered...

...food for Bullfrog.

"Give him anything he wants!" they yelled.

"Great!" said Bullfrog, "because I'M STILL HUNGRY!"

And then, Bullfrog POPPED...

...a grape into his mouth and he was full.

"No more," he groaned.

"Bullfrog," said the sheriff, "because you've eaten so much of our food, you're gonna' have to pay...

...us a visit next week for the County Super Eater Contest. Come hungry."

And he did.

Excerpted from the book BULLFROG POPS. Text copyright (c) 1999 by Rick Walton. Illustrations copyright (c) 1999 by Chris McAllister. Reprinted by permission of Gibbs Smith. All rights reserved.

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