Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Handy How-To: Caring for Your Lion by Tammi Sauer

Congratulations on your new lion!
I know you ordered a kitten, but we ran out of those.

Caring for your lion is easy. Just follow your handy guide.

Step 1: Take a deep breath and carefully open the crate.

Clearly the kid is already in trouble. You expect a sweet little kitty cat and you get a full-sized maned lion? This is going to require more than deep breathing! And then there’s that next direction, a seeming non-sequitur.

Step 2: Locate the enclosed feather.

Keep it handy in case of emergency.


This is getting ridiculous! The kid is supposed to fend off a lion with a feather?

He quickly skims the manual for more helpful hints. The next one makes him quickly cover the bunny on his tee-shirt:

Try NOT to look like a zebra or a gazelle. Or a bunny.

Thanks for the warning, Gilligan!

The following step, related to the feeding his new pet, has the kid ordering ten Extreme Pizzas, which, with extra toppings--a bit of zebra burger and antelope antipasto--seem to give the boy a respite from being prey while he works on the rest of the steps to lion management. These become pressing when the Lion, still a little peckish after his pizza snacks, disobeys the next injunction and swallows the UPS guy. The kid is forced to tickle his tonsils with the aforementioned feather until he barfs up the poor delivery man. So that's what the feather is for. O-kay.

With that out of the way, our kid proceeds to unpack the Potty Training Kit (Some Assembly Required) and fill it with 100 pounds of Scoop-De-Doop Cat Litter, which, while strenuous, is easier than getting the lion to use it.

And our poor newbie pet owner is still not even halfway through the steps in the lion care manual, in the comedic Tammi Sauer's spoofy, tongue-in-cheek, and sensationally silly new book, Caring for Your Lion (Sterling Books, 2017). Sauer's co-owner, artist Troy Cummings, uses his considerable digital cartooning skills to document the process of domesticating a pet who is not exactly what it was cracked up to be. For more pet-care fun, share this one with Jodi Moore's When a Dragon Moves In or Jane Yolen's How Do Dinosaurs Choose Their Pets?

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