The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip

The other night I read the The Very Persistent Gappers of Frip by George Saunders (and illustrated by Lane Smith, of James and the Giant Peach fame) and two things happened: 1) I smiled a lot and generally enjoyed myself and 2)I kept checking the publication date to see if Saunders had aimed this specifically at the current Romney campaign. Turns out, he probably didn't, because it came out in 2000, long before Mr. 47 percent tried to rally the nation to new all-time heights of selfish dickheadery. Yet, even back then the divisive blood was in the air I suppose...

For you see, this zippy, whimsical children's/adult book is, at its heart, about sharing the load. The town of Frip is under siege by these spikey orange suckers called Gappers

(The Mighty Enemy)
who love the town's goats in a shrieking manner and adhere to them until plucked away by the townsfolk and are dumped back into the sea, endlessly, and cause the goats to freak out and stop giving milk, the town's main source of income.

Trouble brews when the gappers suddenly decide to attack one house alone and everyone else decides NOT to chip in and help remove the gappers, because that's not there problem, right? Except when the first house goes under, the gappers move on to the second house, shrieking their love for THOSE goats, and the plague of gappers claims another household and moves right on...

Really, you couldn't write a more compelling argument for sharing the collective load. No country divided is as strong as a country united. Go ahead and examine any country that's experienced a civil war in the last decade or two-how they doing? Are the majority of their citizens healthy and happy? Or are they plagued by gappers to this day while a few assholes reign fire from on high and drink fancy liqueurs?



1 comments:

Peter Pearson said...

An excellent book. Everyone should read it.

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