Idaville was getting ready to bury a time capsule and the entire town was swept up in the fervor. The town was selling envelopes, so that the people could fill them with their own personal touches, for the future of Idaville to enjoy.
Encyclopedia wrote a report of his toughest case for the capsule. Without Encyclopedia, I wonder how the future of Idaville would fare. One would hope Encyclopedia’s good sense would be passed down to future generations. However, the fact that his parents seem to be idiots makes me think that Encyclopedia’s talent isn’t genetic. Idaville could be screwed.
At the event, Encyclopedia and Sally ran into Abe Smathers, founder and president of the Idaville Riddle Club. He was upset because his lunch – lox and bagels – was stolen. He later found the empty bag in the trash. He was more upset by the fact that that his envelope for the time capsule was still missing.
See, he had already sent an envelope for the capsule. The envelope had a riddle, but he wasn’t very pleased with the riddle. “Why is the Statue of Liberty standing in New York Harbor?” Answer: because it can’t sit down.
Since he didn’t like that riddle, he thought of another to add to the capsule. “Why is the Statue of Liberty hollow?” You’d be hollow too if you’d given birth to a nation.
First off, these aren’t riddles; they’re jokes. Secondly, I’d actually say that one was worse than the first one, both for the fact that it’s a dumber joke and because it makes me picture the Statue of Liberty giving birth. As a general rule, I’d say any joke where I have to imagine the Statue of Liberty’s vagina giving birth is not a good joke.
The stolen envelope worried Abe because he thought the thief would put his name on the riddle. Then Abe wouldn’t be able to use it. He wasn’t about to buy another envelope and put the same riddle in it. He worried that it would look bad that the president of the Idaville Riddle Club had used the same riddle as someone else. “I’d be ruined,” he said. This was his concern.
“Oh my goodness! The president of the Idaville Riddle Club used the same riddle as someone else. How horribly embarrassing for that person. That person’s reputation is now besmirched for eternity.” – Absolutely no one, Idaville, 2077.
Someone was more likely to say, “Another stupid joke about the Statue of Liberty? Why were these people obsessed with that thing back then?”
Sally didn’t know what they could do, short of searching everyone at the event. Encyclopedia knew that that wasn’t necessary. All they had to do was watch the water fountain. Since lox is salty, the person who ate Abe’s lunch was likely to get thirsty. The person who was seen taking several trips to the water fountain would be the thief.
The assumption here was that this water fountain is the ONLY source of any kind of drink at this entire event. No one is selling any kind of refreshments, and no one brought anything from home. It’s drink from this water fountain or suffer dehydration.
When the three noticed blue-eyed Rockwell Harrison III taking his fourth trip to the water fountain, they knew that he was the thief.
Well, no. Granted, eating something salty may make someone thirsty, but eating lox isn’t the only reason one would be thirsty. Maybe Rockwell ate something that was salty that wasn’t Abe’s lunch. Maybe Rockwell has some medical condition. Being thirsty isn’t a crime, or at least, it shouldn’t be.
The story ends with Encyclopedia walking from Abe and Rockwell right after Abe asked, “What has two blue eyes and one of them is black?”
That’s right, Encyclopedia. Use specious reasoning to accuse other children of petty crimes and don’t try to stop the needless violence as a result. Just turn your back on it.