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] I read about this monkey that the Russian government sent into outer space. They figured that after a few weeks it would die because the heat from the sun would become unbearable. They said he journey would prove to be invaluable to the advancement of the space program. I wondered how they choose that monkey - that specific one. And why, if he was so special, would they put him in a situation where he could die? If that monkey knew what they were choosing him for, would he have behaved differently? Did he cry when he realized what they had done to him? Grace
: Sometimes popular kids can be really cruel. They can bully you into thinking that there's nothing special about you. They tried to do that to me at Camp Tall Pine. I thank God for sending me someone who changed my life.
: What if he catches us? Howie
: [seeing the clerk mopping his brow
] If we can't run faster than him, then we deserve to get caught.
: Tiwana, can I ask you a question? Tiwana
: Sure. Grace
: Why are you being so nice to me? Tiwana
: Why wouldn't I? Grace
: I do not know, just asking.
: The Museum of Science and Industry is just a couple of miles from my house. They have lots of cool exhibitions and things. They have this big heart that you can walk in to. And they have all these little people sliced up in thin little slices. They're stuck in these glass doors, and when you turn the doors, you can see everything - all their insides. Howie
: Are they real people? Like, really real? Grace
: Yeah. There's a man and a lady, all sliced up. Howie
: Well, where'd they get the bodies? I mean, who would want to be cut up and displayed like that? Grace
: I do not know. I never really thought about it before. Howie
: I bet they didn't have families. Maybe they were war prisoners. Grace
: [tussling and giggling
] I'm brilliant, don't you think? Howie
: I guess. Grace
: No, say it! Howie
: Okay, okay, okay. Grace
: Say it... Howie
: Okay. I'm brilliant.
: [leaving a phone message
] Please make it okay, mommy. Please make it okay. I *am* being tough, mommy. I am, I swear.
: Did you know that Bryce classifies all girls? You know, super fine foxes, foxes middle-of-the-road, dogs, and real dogs. Grace
: What was that? Howie
: He said that you were a dog. Grace
[taking off her glasses
: But, he didn't even really look at you, though. He couldn't have, he wouldn't have said that if he really looked at you. Grace
: I feel gross. I'm gonna go take a shower...
] The bullies tried to make us seem small. I a weird way it did just the opposite. I wasn't afraid any more. And Howie wasn't alone. God has a way of giving you what you need when times get tough. Howie
: [cut to her opening her mail
] In the fall, Howie found a family that adopted him in Connecticut. We stayed in touch, and the next summer mom took us to the museum to see the cut-up people. And then to NASA to see the rockets. Grace
: [reading his enclosed note
] I am afraid I will never make it back to Tall Pine to pay our debt. Enclosed please find my half of the money. Did you find out who the cut up people were in the museum> I think about them a lot. -Howie P.S. Bryce was wrong. You were a SUPER FINE FOX.