Day 217: Hero of the Beach

Hero of the Beach
Matt Zurbo


Hey, there’s a new Hero of the Beach!
(Kid in bathers with floppy hat, with towel and beach ball, walking left to right, but looking, startled, at reader.)

It’s not Alpha Boy!
Or even Alpha Girl!
(Kid, small, towered over by chest out, big-chinned, boy and girl either side.)

It’s Billygoat!
(Goal butting Alpha Boy, Alpha girl running away. Kid standing, watching, scratching head.)

Tommy brought him down from the farm one day.
(Farm kid, pulling wooden trailer with goat in it, eating a towel.)

And he never left!
(Goat, sitting on sand, eating cart.)

Billygoat is cool, because he eats beach rubbish!
(Arrogant kids talking want walking, throwing rubbish over shoulder. Goat behind them eating it.)

And doesn’t like people who litter.
(Butting all arrogant kids. Kid from start cheering.)

He also eats ugly hats!
(Lady with big sunnies holding head where hat was in shock. Goat eating it. Other people’s hats at its feet. Overweight family trying to hold back very small yapping dog on lead.)

In fact, he eats anything! Bah!
(Billygoat, no expression, looking at overweight family. Their dog lead now leads to goat’s mouth. Around it, people looking in annoyance at umbrella with bites in it. Man holding up towel with bites in it. Kid holding up cricket bat with bites in it.)

Billygoat looks good when he swims!
(Swimming as if strutting/trotting, chest out, head high. Sunnies on, small cocktail umbrella behind ear.)

Someone made him some broadies! Look out!
(Standing on hind legs, sunnies on, wearing broad shorts, thongs, leaning against lifesaver’s flag, which has a bit out of it. Two life savers behind goat, arms folded, backing him up.)

Billygoat loves music, and isn’t afraid to show it!
(Beatbox in sand, Billygoat with Hawaiian Lei on, dancing. Everyone in circle around goat, dancing, too.)

What’s not to like?
(Goat standing on all fours, sunnies on, riding surfboard.)

Billygoat thinks there should be more mixing and matching!
(Double page spread of Billygoat, kicking back, talking to crowd of kids listening on beach. Images appearing behind him.)

Cows at the bowling ally.
Sheep on trampolines.
Sharks that wear hats!
Trees that push prams!
Bats that read big, serious books!
Prams with planets and moons.

We’re just happy with goats and beaches.
(Goat head-butting beach volleyball.)

Hang on!
(Everybody’s head turned to the right, including goat’s, which has ball bouncing off it. There is a “WAHH!” sound coming from right.)

It’s a white pointer!
(Big shark, mouth open, about to consume crying baby with floaties.)

Here comes Billygoat!
(Goat, all four legs together, bouncing from top of one head of person in water, to another, and off a seagull, and octopus, too, moving forward.)

I swear, you just can’t beat a rough, tough, salty, sandy goat!
(Goat head-butting nose of startled shark.)

What’s that? No goats allowed?
(Goat standing aggressively on shoreline, looking at departing shark fin, as kids argue with two beach patrol officers. In front of them is a sign with a goat with a red line through it.)

(Goat casually eating all of beach patrol officer’s clothes, except undies. Officers covering up, mortified.)

What a win!
(Kids cheering, hoisting goat above their heads.)

Phew! What a day…!
(Kid from start, hot, exhausted, as Dad carries him home over shoulder, Goat watching them go.)

Who would have thought… A goat at the beach!
(Dusk. Goat curled up, sleeping in the sand.)



The End

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