Back in February I wrote about the struggle I was having with the RAFTS formula that was the basis for that month’s flash fiction contest at SFFWorld. Well, it took a lot of hemming and hawing, and it went right down to the wire, but I managed to follow the rules, and push myself into trying a different format in the bargain. I didn’t win, but I got plenty of kind words, and I’m pretty pleased that I was successfully able to go outside my comfort zone a bit.
International Brotherhood of Forest Creatures Local 937
Minutes of the Meeting of the Seventeenth of November
The meeting was called to order by Chairman Wullump after the wolf contingent agreed to let the squirrels down out of the trees for the duration.
The minutes from the previous meeting were read by Secretary Chithick. Due to his poor eyesight, this was halted halfway through by a unanimous motion to assume he’d gotten it right and to approve them as written. This was followed by the usual debate as to why a bat was selected to be Secretary in the first place, where it was once again emphasized that no one else had wanted the position. Secretary Chithick attempted to leave in a huff, but immediately flew into a tree. Recording of the minutes was taken up by Vice-Chairman Hurrh while medical attention was sought for the Secretary.
The Chair updated the group on efforts to relocate cute species to areas being encroached upon by human development. To date, fourteen spotted owl families have moved to threatened forests throughout rural Oregon, and a particularly charming group of otters has taken up residence near Eugene. The update was interrupted by an objection from Member Bulliwag, and an explanation from the Chair that, while he no doubt has a sparkling personality, badgers are not necessarily considered to be “cute.” The Member insisted this be put to a vote, which was seconded by the wolverine assembly. The membership was polled per the voting bylaws, and badgers were found not to be cute. Member Bulliwag took exception with the results, citing precedent under the So Ugly They’re Cute provision, but eventually accepted the vote under protest, and under Vice-Chairman Hurrh, who sat on the Member until he agreed to drop the issue.
The meeting was interrupted again as a disoriented Secretary Chithick attempted to resume his duties by taking up what he thought was his pen, but was actually a member of the stick insect delegation. The unfortunate insect was treated for minor abrasions to the head, and the Chair ordered Secretary Chithick to go home and recuperate. Secretary Chithick once again attempted to leave in a huff, and immediately flew into the exact same tree.
The Chair then opened the floor to new business.
The bear caucus expressed dissatisfaction with the current course of action and expressed a preference for “mauling hikers any chance we get.” This was met with approval from the wolf contingent, who argued that the cute animals were also the better tasting animals, and with their relocation closer to human environments, wolves were forced to eat less appetizing animals like badgers. The Chair expressed sympathy for their respective positions, but pointed out to the bears and wolves that their proposed plan, coupled with their already violent reputations, would do them more harm than good, and wasn’t worth the relatively meager reward of not having to eat badgers. Member Bulliwag took exception to this line of discussion, but his motion for a vote on the tastiness of badgers failed to be seconded.
At this point, Vice-Chairman Hurrh, being a bear herself, would like to go on record in favor of mauling hikers just on general principle. She doesn’t go walking through their homes for recreation; she’d appreciate the same courtesy.
Several minutes of activity are missing from this record due to the Vice-Chairman having to swat away a still-reeling Secretary Chithick, who attempted to resume his duties despite multiple concussions. Eventually the Secretary gave up and successfully flew off in a huff, only to narrowly miss the first tree and fly directly into the one behind it.
Treasurer Gnurring gave a report on the fundraising efforts for the quarter. Citing the continued lack of a grasp of accounting on our part, he was once again unable to provide any concrete numbers, let alone justify the continued existence of the Treasurer position. Member Bulliwag questioned how it was we were able to count votes but not our treasury, but the subject was quickly changed without further explanation
Member Tenta was given the floor to once again voice her complaints regarding violations of the Tree Owners Association guidelines by various squirrels and owls. Infractions included improperly sized tree hollows, unapproved foliage alterations, and failure to pay TOA dues in a timely manner. The Chair listened patiently and solemnly promised to look into the matter immediately, and actually managed to sound sincere this time.
Citing no further business, Chairman Wullump moved that the meeting be adjourned. The seconding was interrupted by Secretary Chithick, who attempted to call the meeting to order in the mistaken belief that he was Chairman Wullump and that we had just convened. Efforts to explain to him the fact he was flying meant he was a bat and not a beaver failed to reach him, leaving Sergeant-at-Arms Aarhau no choice but to forcibly remove the Secretary from the meeting. It is the considered opinion of the Vice-Chairman that the Secretary deliberately struck his head against the same exact tree as he was carried past it in a shameless attempt to garner sympathy.
An offer from Member Bulliwag to take on the role of Secretary failed to be brought to a vote, and the meeting was adjourned.