Jerry owned a donkey, and every couple of weeks, after he'd grown bored of a place, he would strap his bundle of stuff to the back of his donkey and head out for the open road.
"Move faster, donkey!" Jerry would yell.
"You're so lazy!" Jerry would shout.
"And you smell like rotten pickles!"
Jerry was tired of his donkey. He thought he might finally be ready to settle down, get a job, and buy a house. And if you own a house, you don't really need a donkey.
Forest Springs seemed like a nice place to live. The trees had leaves. People obeyed traffic laws. Children rode bikes. One child zipped past Jerry and his donkey. "Peeuuwww! That is one stinky mule!" he said. So maybe the schools weren't the greatest.
There was a man selling peanuts at the side of the road. "Would you like to buy my donkey?" Jerry asked him when the man had finished shouting about how his peanuts were "fresh-roasted."
The peanut vendor looked at the donkey. He wrinkled his nose. "I don't want your donkey, man. That thing smells like sweaty socks."
Jerry tried to sell his donkey to six other people, but none of them wanted it either. He came up with a new plan. Instead of selling the donkey, he would just give it away. Who wouldn't want a free donkey? He chuckled at his own cleverness. "Pretty soon," Jerry said, "I'll be rid of you, my slow, malodorous friend."
It wasn't long before he came upon a beggar huddled under a blanket in a dirty alley. "Can you spare some change, brother?" the beggar said.
"No, I cannot," Jerry answered. "I don't have two pennies to rub together, but I can give you this donkey."
The beggar scowled. "That old thing? It smells like my armpits. It's bad enough I got to live with my stinky armpits, I don't need no smelly donkey to add to it."
Jerry tried to give his donkey away to a little girl, a lonely widow, and the zoo, but none of them wanted the animal. "You see how worthless you are, donkey? Not even a lonely old woman wants you. I ought to leave you right here at the side of the road."
That was it! He didn't need to sell the donkey or give it away, he could just abandon it! Jerry climbed off the smelly donkey and grabbed his bundle of belongings. "See you later, donkey," he said, and then added, "Actually, that's not true. I plan on never seeing, or smelling, you again." As Jerry strolled off toward the center of town, the donkey stood there stupidly, not knowing what to do.
Jerry soon found what he was looking for, a person who needed a roommate. He moved in to a tiny apartment on Main Street. But Jerry was so used to the open air that he felt cramped in the small space. The apartment was tiny and his roommate was a slob.
"Pick up your stuff, you slob!" Jerry scolded the man. "What do you need so much stuff for anyway?" They had a fight and Jerry's new roommate threw him out.
"And take your stupid bundle with you!" he said.
Jerry tried other places, but no one wanted him. Some people said he smelled a little like a donkey. He decided to go back to his old life. He slung his bundle of stuff over his shoulder and started walking. It was a long way to the next town.
The night was growing dark and his legs were sore, so he stopped to sit at the side of the dusty road. And as he did he smelled something on the wind. It smelled a little like rotten pickles. The scent reminded him of sweaty socks. It was redolent of the armpits of a homeless beggar. It smelled like Jerry's donkey, and it smelled wonderful.