Feebie Saves Gravity
Feebie had an idea she couldn’t get out of her head.
“Maybe I’m not going anywhere when I ride my bike,” she thought.
(Girl riding pushbike.)
“Maybe, when I peddle, I’m making the world spin!”
(Girl riding bike, but on a small version of Earth. Arrows show front wheel is turning one way, the Earth is turning the other.)
The idea that the front wheel of her bike was the only unmoving thing in the world was rather big!
(Girl riding bike on curved surface, huge versions of other planets in the sky above her.)
Feebie wanted to stop and think about it, but she was scared. What if she did stop peddling… and the world stopped spinning, too? People might drift away!
(Girl standing, bike under her, watching people and pets start to drift up into the sky.)
That was a lot of responsibility for one little girl.
(Gil peddling, stressed.)
So she kept peddling.
“Why not?” Feebie said out loud. “If some people can say the Earth is flat, or no-one has ever landed on the moon, I can say I use my bike to make the planet spin!”
(Girl riding over edge of flat Earth.)
“She has a point…” said Dot from Dover.
“Indeed,” said Chris from Cairns.
“Genius!” said Ablert from Altona.
And, like that, Feebie got a following.
(Girl peddling bike, a bit baffled, while a dozen people of all ages, sizes, nationalities, cheering her on.)
Some people said; “Oh, she’ll part the seas!”
Others cried; “Anything that little girl says is law!”
“Save us!” some wailed.
“Punish us…” others moaned.
(Girl riding, behind her is a line of preying, stressed, delirious people, all looking at her.)
Gradually, Feebie realised if she wanted to keep the world spinning, she would have to peddle in the one direction.
(Girl peddling past house, followers running after/around her. Mum giving a confused little wave from porch. Dad scratching his head.)
“Good-bye Mum and Dad!” she waved. “I guess I’ll see you in about a year.”
At first, Feebie found it all a little boring, so she bunny-hopped…
(Girl standing on peddles, balancing bike on front wheel. Series of small hop marks under wheel. All her followers are falling about.)
Nobody was too impressed with that!
(Girl riding on, followers spread all over street.)
Then, Feebie wondered what would happen if she peddled backwards?
(Everybody holding onto poles and things, or falling sideways.)
(Girl riding backwards into the zoo. All the animals falling sideways through the air, back past her.)
“That was hilarious!” she said.
(Girl, smiling, catching her breath beside her bike A few animals in he background starting to drift away.)
Then, she wondered what would happen if she peddled in a squiggly line…
(All the trees bending and dancing around her as she rides. As are the followers.)
“You’re amazing!” all Feebie followers told her.
“Just the best!”
(Girl standing on her hands on her bike seat. All her followers hanging upside down, holding onto tree branch to stop from falling.)
It briefly occurred to Feebie that maybe her followers were simply all mad.
That they had nothing better to do.
That they would rather follow a crazy girl, and her silly idea, than do something.
(Girl sitting on a banana lounge, kicking back, being fed grapes. Other followers lining beside her bike, taking turns at riding it for her.)
But then she decided that she didn’t care.
(Same view as previous page, but bike’s back tire is popping. Person riding it is falling forward. Everybody else, including girl, is poking their head up, eyes goggled.)
(Everybody, including girl, holding onto something, desperately, to stop from drifting away.)
“Hang on, what’s this…?” thought Feebie.
(Girl, along with some of her followers, are holding street pole with fear. Others have eyes scrunched shut. Girl is watching an ordinary kid walking their sausage dog on a lead.)
(Girl on ground, watching person with dog walking away. Everybody else still too busy clutching thing to stop from falling.)
“I’m sorry,” said Feebie. “I’m going to stop for a while. I miss my Mum and Dad.”
(Girl walking her bike, with its flat tire, away.)
“Hang on!” Feebie’s followers protested.
“Why isn’t she drifting away?”
“How come there is still gravity?” they grumbled.
(Girl gulping, sweating, as followers hold her up by her ankle, some scratching their heads, some looking around angry.)
“Wait!” Feebie pleaded. “I’ve kept the world spinning while I fix my flat tire by lassoing the moon…”
(Girl being held upside down by angry followers, is describing an image of her standing on one leg on bike set as it rides, throwing a lasso.)
“This is the end for me…” she thought. “No way will they fall for that!”
“Well, that explains everything.”
“Look, there it goes now!”
“Quick, let’s follow it!”
(Girl, ruffled, sitting on ground, as followers run after the rising moon, away from her.)
Feebie had a great imagination.
She often wondered if she was simply falling through the sky, dragging the world with her.
Sometimes she thought she was riding a dragon, but had to shut her eyes to feel it. (Suitable image.)
She imagined everything, all the time.
But now knew better than to tell people, in case they believed it.
(Girl is walking away, whistling. Behind her, followers are chasing the moon, that is straining, pulling the Earth with a rope around it.)
4 thoughts on “Day 331: Feebie Saves Gravity”
Jumped here from the NYT article – lovely original idea, reminds me a bit of Maurice Sendak. The ending just wraps the whole book up perfectly.
LikeLiked by 2 people
Awesome comment on human frailty, and written in a loving way. Thank you.
Thank you. You’re an inspiration.
Wow, no, thank you!