This is an idea that's been in my mind for who knows how long, but a fully developed plot just now finally came to me, so here's a short little story I whipped up. And I know the idea has been done to death, it's really mostly part of the ending that I really wanted to work into a story, so... yeah. ******************************************** It was another bright, sunny day on Sesame Street, as Ernie was hanging around the stoop of 123, listening to the sounds of birds chirping, kids playing, and traffic from nearby streets; he was taking it all in, before he realized he wasn't alone. ERNIE: Oh, hi there, welcome to Sesame Street! You know, I'm so glad you're here; because today is a VERY special day... do you know what today is? No? Well, I'll give you some clues, and you can guess what today is, okay? But before Ernie could give his guests any clues, one of the front doors opened, as Bert stepped outside. ERNIE: Oh, there's Bert... hey, let's see if Bert can guess what today is, want to? Bert began to brush past Ernie. BERT: Alright, Ernie, I'm off now, I've got a LOT to today, very busy day... ERNIE: Oh, hey Bert, I've got a question for you. BERT: Well, make it quick, Ernie, I've got a lot to do today. ERNIE: That’s what I wanted to ask you, Bert… do you know what today is? BERT: Monday? ERNIE: (Pause) Well, yeah, it IS Monday, but, do you know what happens today? Bert paused to think for a minute. BERT: You’ve got me, Ernie. ERNIE: Oh, come on, Bert… are you sure you haven’t forgotten anything, today? BERT: Let’s see… I got up… I fed Bernice… I ate my bowl of oat meal… oh, oh you’re right Ernie, I did forget something! ERNIE: Yeah? BERT: I forgot to take my argyle socks off the clothes line. I’ll do that when I get back, I’ve really got to go, Ernie, have a nice day. Bert went about his way, while Ernie sent him a farewell. ERNIE: Gee… Bert didn’t seem to remember what today is, that seems so unlike him… huh… At that moment, Gordon stepped out onto the stoop as well; he too was about to go about his business, but not before he greeted Ernie. GORDON: Hey, Ernie! ERNIE: Ah, Gordon, I’m glad you bumped into me; I want to ask you a question. GORDON: Sure, but make it quick, I’ve got a lot to do today. ERNIE: Well, I just wanted to ask you… do you know what today is. GORDON: (Pause) Monday? ERNIE: Well… yes, today IS Monday, but… I mean, today is a very special day, can you guess what today is? Gordon paused to think about it for a moment, before he lifted his finger in conclusion. GORDON: Oh, oh… yes, yes I think I know what today is! ERNIE: Yeah? GORDON: Today is the day the Super Ducky Bowl will be on TV! ERNIE: (Pause) Uh, no, no-no, that won’t be on till next week. GORDON: Oh… well, I don’t know then. Look, Ernie, I’d love to stay and play your little guessing game, but I’m in a rush, I’ve really got a lot to do today. ERNIE: Oh. GORDON: See you. Gordon, too, went about his business, while Ernie threw a wave to him; Ernie then reached into his pocket, and pulled out his little bundle of joy, but not before letting out a disappointed sigh. ERNIE: Gee, Rubber Ducky, so far, Bert and Gordon couldn’t guess what today is… Ernie squeaked his beloved ducky. ERNIE: YOU know what today is, don’t you? Ernie squeaked his ducky, and manipulated it in a nodding fashion. ERNIE: You do?! Ernie repeated his previous actions, but squeaked this ducky much longer, as means of making the duck communicate. ERNIE: Oh, Rubber Ducky! I knew YOU wouldn’t forget what a special day today is! Once more, Ernie squeaked Rubber Ducky, but this time, he manipulated him in a fashion to make it seem like he is shaking his head. ERNIE: But, it doesn’t seem like anybody else remembers what today is… do you suppose EVERYBODY has forgotten? This time, Ernie only let Rubber Ducky make one abrupt little squeak, as he tilted him to the side, in a shrugging gesture. ERNIE: You think I should see if anybody else may remember? Ernie had his ducky squeaky and nod. ERNIE: Okay… let’s go see if anybody remembers what today is! Ernie pocketed Rubber Ducky, and descended the stoop. Over at Hooper’s Store, Chris was hanging out by the front window, watching the world go by, while Alan was hard at work in the kitchen, where he was mixing together a number of ingredients in a rather large bowl; Chris turned his attention towards Alan for a brief moment. CHRIS: Hey, Alan, how’s it coming? ALAN: Oh, it’s coming along very well, I do believe this is going to be a very tasty treat! Alan continued mixing, while Chris looked out the window again, and saw Ernie approaching their direction. CHRIS: Uh oh! Ernie at 12:00! Alan took a look at his watch. ALAN: I think you forgot to set you time back, Chris, its only 11:00. CHRIS: No, I mean, Ernie’s coming! He’s heading right this way! This caught Alan off his guard. ALAN: Oh! Quick, give me a hand with this… Chris made his way behind the counter, where Alan quickly whipped out a clean, dry dish towel, draped it over the large bowl, as he and Chris both carefully lifted it off the counter, and set it down, while the two of them also worked feverishly to clear the counter of the mess that was made in the process. Afterwards, both raced back to the front window, just as Ernie was passing by. ERNIE: Ah, Alan! Chris! Both Alan and Chris greeted Ernie. ALAN: Beautiful day, isn’t it? CHRIS: FANTASTIC day! ERNIE: Yeah, and today is also a SPECIAL day, too! CHRIS: Oh, is that so? ERNIE: Yeah, can either of you guess what today is? And please, don’t say Monday. ALAN: Well… today’s the day the store has its weekly ten-for-ten special… ten boxes of cereal, for ten dollars. CHRIS: Hey, that’s a great sale! Alan nodded. ERNIE: Oh, a ten-for-ten sale, huh? Alan nodded again. ALAN: Sure. Here, let me show you… Alan and Chris reached down below them, and started placing boxes of cereal on the windowsill. ALAN: Okay… now, let’s count the boxes of cereal, and see how many we have… ERNIE: Oh, okay… Alan, Chris, and Ernie started counting the boxes of cereal, one at a time, until they counted a total of ten boxes. ERNIE: Yeah, ten boxes… ALAN: And this week’s ten-for-ten special is ten boxes for ten dollars. CHRIS: That’s right, so that means each of these boxes of cereal are only a dollar. ERNIE: Are you sure? CHRIS: Sure I’m sure! ALAN: Here, let’s take another look… (Grabs a box) so, this would be a dollar, right? ERNIE: Right. So, once more, the three went through each box once more, until they figured out that the ten boxes of cereal would be ten dollars. CHRIS: Great sale, huh? Ernie sadly nodded. ERNIE: Yeah… yeah… ALAN: Well, Ernie, we’d love to keep counting with you, but Chris and I have to get back to work… CHRIS: Yeah, we’ve got a lot to do today. ERNIE: Oh, well, okay. Alan and Chris bid Ernie farewell, as they started putting the cereal boxes away; Ernie was growing a little frustrated. At that moment, Bob came strolling out his front door, sporting another one of his new, loud sweaters; he made his way down the sidewalk, but Ernie called out to him. ERNIE: Bob! BOB: Oh, hi, Ernie! I don’t have much time, I’ve got a lot to do today. ERNIE: Oh, I won’t keep you, I just wanted to see if you could guess what today is, it’s a VERY special day! BOB: Oh, is it? ERNIE: Yes, care to guess? BOB: I’d like to, Ernie, but I’ve really need to get going, I’ve… BOTH: Got a lot to do today… BOB: (Nods) Right, but maybe you could tell me all about it later? ERNIE: I guess I could. BOB: Great, see you, Ernie! ERNIE: Bye, Bob… Ernie let out another sad sigh, as he pulled Rubber Ducky out of his pocket, once more. ERNIE: Gosh, Rubber Ducky… not only has everybody forgotten what today is, but they’ve all got a lot to do today… I almost feel like I’m out of the loop, I wonder why everybody is so busy today…? Ernie squeaked Rubber Ducky. ERNIE: Yeah, I haven’t the faintest clue, either. At that moment, Ernie suddenly perked up when he heard a low and gruff, “Dum-de-dum-dum-dum”, one of his favorite sounds, next to the comforting squeak of his Rubber Ducky, and the unmistakable signature laugh of his ol’ buddy Bert; Cookie Monster was merrily passing by in front of 123, when Ernie ran up to him. ERNIE: Cookie Monster! I KNEW that was your “Dum-de-dum-dum-dum”! COOKIE: Oh, Er-nie! Hi! How you doing? Cookie placed one of his big, shaggy hands on Ernie’s shoulder, giving him a friendly pat. ERNIE: Oh, Cookie, I’m so happy to see you! COOKIE: Me always happy to see you, too! ERNIE: I know that YOU know what day this is! COOKIE: Of course me know what day dis is! ERNIE: You KNOW today is a VERY special day! COOKIE: Of course me know today VERY special day! ERNIE: Oh, Cookie! Ernie grabbed Cookie, giving him a really tight hug, while Cookie returned the favor. ERNIE: Oh, Cookie, I KNEW you wouldn’t forget what a special day today is! COOKIE: How could me forget dat today VERY special day? Ernie broke away from his and Cookie’s bro-hug. ERNIE: I KNEW you wouldn’t forget! COOKIE: How could EVER forget VERY special day? Me ALWAYS remember whenever me supposed to get me “Cookie of da month club” cookies in da mail! Ernie felt dejected once again. ERNIE: Oh… right, your Cookie of the Month Club cookies… COOKIE: Yeah-yeah-yeah! Me could NEVER forget dat VERY special day! Me going over to post office to pick up me package right now… dis month supposed to be chocolate-chippy cherry chunky, marshmallow cookie! Oh boy-oh boy-oh boy! ERNIE: Ah, that does sound really yummy, Cookie Monster. COOKIE: Ohhh! Me hope so! Me REALLY hope so! Only one way to find out, me better get to da post office and get me cookies! Buh-bye! Cookie ran off for the post office. Ernie was feeling really frustrated by this point, he decided to drop by Big Bird’s for one last check to see if anyone could remember what today is supposed to be; Ernie approached the arrangement of construction doors, and brought up his fist to knock on one of them, but before he could, the door swung open to the inside, and Big Bird came stepping through the open doorway. BIG BIRD: Oh! Hi there, Ernie! ERNIE: Oh, hi Big Bird, I was just coming to see you. BIG BIRD: You were? ERNIE: Yes, I was just wondering if you happened to know what today is. It’s a VERY special day today… BIG BIRD: Uh… gee, no Ernie, I don’t know… I wish I did, though… ERNIE: Well, do you have time for a quick guessing game? I know how much you love guessing games! BIG BIRD: Gee, I’d love to Ernie, but I can’t, I’ve got to go, I’ve… BOTH: Got a lot to do today… ERNIE: Yeah, I’ve heard that one before. BIG BIRD: Sorry, Ernie… maybe later, okay? ERNIE: (Nods) yeah… maybe… BIG BIRD: Well, bye, Ernie! Big Bird went about his way. Moments later, Ernie sat on the stoop, resting his chin in the palms of his hands, and his elbows on his knee, feeling really saddened, and a little hurt; every few seconds, he would let out a sad sigh. Oscar peaked out of his trashcan, and found the saddened Ernie on the stoop; curious, Oscar popped his head out. OSCAR: Hey, Ernie! ERNIE: Oh, hi Oscar… OSCAR: Hey, why the long face there, Mr. Happy? ERNIE: Oh, Oscar, I just feel so blue right now… OSCAR: Oh, I can tell, it’s written all over your face… glum, gloomy, sad, unhappy… it’s WONDERFUL! ERNIE: It’s NOT wonderful, Oscar… it’s TERRIBLE! OSCAR: All a matter of perspective… ERNIE: Today was a special day… a VERY special day… and NOBODY could remember… not Gordon… not Alan, not Chris… not Bob… not Big Bird… not even Cookie Monster… not even my ol’ buddy Bert! OSCAR: Ah, it’s a VERY special day, huh? Oscar actually knew what today is, in fact, he was in on a little scheme, but the problem was he wasn’t supposed to say anything, otherwise, it would ruin the whole thing… which really tickled Oscar’s mind, because a ruined scheme would mean a bunch of upset and disappointed people, and a street full of upset and disappointment tickled Oscar’s fancy. OSCAR: You know, Ernie, I happen to know EXACTLY what today is. ERNIE: (Nods) Yeah… it’s Monday, it’s Everybody-Is-Busy-And-Has-A-Lot-To-Do-Today Day… OSCAR: Noo, I mean, I know WHY today is a special day! Ernie slowly lifted his head, and faced Oscar. ERNIE: You do? Really? OSCAR: Sure, kid! ERNIE: You REALLY know why today is a special day, Oscar? OSCAR: Sure I know! Why, today is… Oscar was cut off by Bert racing over to the banister of the stoop. BERT: Oh, Ernie, there you are! ERNIE: Oh, hi Bert… BERT: I’m glad I found you, I need you to help me with something… ERNIE: What’s the matter, Bert? BERT: Well… it’s kind of difficult to explain… you’ll see what I mean… come on, it’s in the Arbor… ERNIE: Well… okay… I’ll be right back, Oscar. OSCAR: Take your time, I got nothing’ else to do… Ernie arose from the steps, and followed Bert into the Arbor. ERNIE: So, what is it you were needing help with, Bert? I don’t see anything. BERT: You’ll see… Bert brought Ernie over to outdoor picnic tables by Hooper’s, but Ernie didn’t see anything that anybody could possibly need help with. ERNIE: There’s nothing here, Bert, what do you need help with? BERT: Oh… just this: At that second, everybody had emerged from their hiding places, and yelled “SURPRISE!!!” Gordon, Bob, Cookie, and Big Bird all had presents in hand; Alan and Chris stepped out, carrying a huge cake with dozens of candles on it; neighborhood kids were tossing confetti all over the place and blowing noisemakers; and Cookie helped put a party hat onto Ernie’s head. ERNIE: Oh, this isn’t all for ME, is it? GORDON: Sure it is! ALAN: ALL of this is for you! CHRIS: Yeah, we all pitched in, and planned this whole surprise party for you! BOB: Sure, you didn’t think we would forget that today is a VERY special day, did you? Ernie turned to Bert. ERNIE: Bert? You too? BERT: Would I forget your birthday, Ernie? ERNIE: Ohhhhhhh, Bert! Ernie grabbed Bert in a big bear hug, lifting him off the ground, and wailing, while the others watched on, with laughs of joy and amusement. ERNIE: Oh Bert, I thought everybody had forgotten my birthday, Bert… I thought everybody had forgotten, Bert! BERT: Wah! Ernie! Ernie! Put me down, Ernie! Ernie set Bert down, but still hung on to him. ERNIE: This is the greatest surprise I’ve ever gotten in my life, Bert… ohhhh… BERT: Ernie, Ernie, come on, buck up, kiddo… BIG BIRD: Hey, what about the song? ERNIE: What song? BOB: Oh, right! Ernie, in honor of your VERY special day, we wrote a little song for you… everybody? All together now! The familiar Rubber Ducky tune began playing, from seemingly nowhere, however, the song had some new lyrics this time: ALL: Ernie-Ernie, it’s your day, And we all shout, HIP-HOORAY, Ernie-Ernie, happy birthday to yoooou… Vo-vo-vo-de-oh… Ernie-Ernie, it’s time for cake, So blow out those candles, for goodness sake, Ernie-Ernie, happy birthday to you! ALAN and CHRIS: Oh, every day we think, how much we are lucky… GORDON and BOB: To have a really great friend, who, always carries a ducky… OSCAR: (Grimacing) Yucky-yuck-yucky… ALL: Ernie-Ernie, it’s so true, Just how much that we love you, Ernie-Ernie, we sing our new song to- Ernie-Ernie, happy birthday to yoooooou! Everyone then cheered for Ernie, who thanked them, profusely, before he once again grabbed Bert, burying his face into his shoulder. ERNIE: Ohhh, Bert! This is the greatest birthday surprise, ever, Bert! BERT: Oh, Ernie… ALAN: Come on, Ernie, blow out your candles! CHRIS: But don’t forget to make a wish, first! ERNIE: Okay! Let’s see… Ernie thought for a brief moment, before blowing out all of his candles, as the other clapped, while Alan began cutting the cake, and Chris passed out plastic plates and forks. BERT: What did you wish for, Ernie? ERNIE: Oh, Bert, you’re not supposed to tell what you wished for, or it won’t come true! BIG BIRD: Oh, I bet I know what you wished for, Ernie… Big Bird turned his head towards the sky, and began calling out. BIG BIRD: Okay gang, bring ‘em in! Up in the sky, a small flock of little yellow bird flew overhead, all carrying a large, net bag in their feet; at the precise moment, half of the birds let go of the bag, and began raining dozens, and dozens of balloons down on the party. ERNIE: Oh! Oh! Look at all the balloons! Big balloons! Little balloons! Middle-sized balloons! Oh, I just LOVE balloons! Ernie buried his face into his hands, and began blubbering. BERT: He gets really emotional sometimes… ALAN: Come on, birthday boy, have some cake! Alan handed Ernie a plastic plate, with a big piece of cake on it, while Chris served out slices to the others as well; at that moment, Count Von Count popped by, and saw all the balloons falling from the sky. COUNT: Ah, balloons! And so many of them, too! So many, in fact, I think I will count them! Ah-ah-ah, what a wonderful party! Ah-ah-ah! Ah, let’s see… one, two, three-four-five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten… More cake was passed around, all the while Oscar watched from his trashcan, with disgust on his face. OSCAR: Ugh! Look at all those happy, smiling faces… it’s enough to make a grouch sick… some special day THIS turned out to be… ugh… The lid on Oscar’s can then came dropping down on his head with a loud clang. OSCAR: Ow! Some special day this turned out to be, indeed; this was, without a doubt, the best birthday Ernie had ever had, and the fun had just begun. A very special it did turn out to be. The end.