Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Meet the Klings

The following story is fictional and might not depict any actual person or event.

This is the tale of two families. They share a last name and for a brief moment in time they shared a connection, albeit a minute and harebrained connection. Beyond that, they have very little in common and though it be a small world, their paths are likely to never cross again.

Our first family, the PA Klings, are a happy family. They love life, they find humor in most situations, and they generally see the best in humankind.  You might be interested to know that the PA Klings love music and theater. They are known to burst into song at the most inopportune moments. Our second family, the CA Klings are dairy farmers. They, quite in contrast to the PA Klings, sadly live as if everyone they meet is out to get them and they have to guard their home and herd very closely. One other interesting fact to note is that the CA Klings love crime shows; Law and Order (all of them), CSI (all of them), even old Columbo reruns (there's only one Columbo). Mr. CA Kling, in particular, considers himself a self-taught investigator due to the number of criminal shows he has seen. Nothing gets by him on the dairy farm.

At the beginning of our story, the PA Klings have no idea that there is another family who shares their name and who is about to become entangled in their business.

One day, Mrs. PA Kling received an email in error. This particular email was from a 4-H leader and asked about Mrs. PA Kling's daughter's interest in joining their dairy 4-H club. Mrs. PA Kling knew this email was sent in error because a.) The PA Klings do not own any dairy  b.) The PA Klings never ever expressed interest in joining a dairy 4-H club   c.) Mrs. PA Kling could not imagine any of her daughters having any interest in dairy even with the allure of possibly becoming a future Dairy Princess and   d.) While Mrs. PA Kling always wanted a farm, she was more interested in goats and chickens than bovines.  These errant emails happened quite frequently as the PA Klings had what appeared to be a very common email address. Since the infamous snuggie texter is one of Mrs. Kling's heroes, she responded in her usual fashion; with a totally ridiculous and outlandish email which she assumed would alert the mistaken 4-H leader that she had sent an email to the wrong person.

However, as the PA Klings came to find out, the 4-H dairy club leader in who-knows-where didn't catch the humor in the email and sent a second email, kind of like the unaware other half of those infamous snuggie texts.  So, Mrs. PA Kling did the only thing she knew to do, she sent another email, similar in its outrageous and ludicrous message.  Again, the 4-H leader responded, this time asking for the contact information, health history, and anything else relevant to registering a precious PA Kling daughter for a dairy club.  At this point, Mrs. PA Kling gave up. She was having difficulty thinking of other preposterous and absurd responses and even if this 4-H leader happened to live nearby, Mrs. PA Kling just could not convince any of her daughters to join.

Mrs. PA Kling went about her business and forgot all about the time her daughters almost became 4-H dairy club members to meet dairy farmer's sons who would themselves grow up to propose to said daughters so they could all be future dairy farmer's wives.  Time went by as time will do. A week. A month. Months.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the continent, The CA Klings went into panic mode. Their adored and highly regarded  4-H dairy club leader told them about the two obnoxious emails she received from a stranger. She failed to mention that she was the one who contacted the PA Klings in the first place and that it wasn't the PA Klings that had sought her out. Missing this critical piece of information, Mr. CA Kling immediately decided that a stalker or predator was out to get his (hopefully soon-to-be) dairy princess daughter. Fearing for her life and the life of her dairy cow, Bessie, he turned to his local police department.

His call was picked up by Mr. CA Policeofficer. Mr. CA Kling explained the two hilarious emails that the community's esteemed 4-H leader had received from a cyber criminal. Once again, the important fact that it was the 4-H leader's mistake in the first place, was left out of the evidence list. The police officer on the phone agreed to look into this despicable crime, stifling the laughter that was about to erupt. But though he was born at night, he was not born last night. Even he could figure out that there was a missing link; an email which started the whole thing, and that there was no cause for alarm. He File Thirteened the whole thing and forgot all about it. Until the next day when Mr. CA Kling called again. And again. The next, day, too. Mr. CA Kling was nothing if not persistent and insistent that there was a crime being committed against his daughter. It got so the police department would moo loudly every time the phone rang.  Mr. CA Policeofficer ignored the whole thing as best he could and spent his time on real crimes like trash cans placed too close to the road on trash day and uneutered cats without tags prowling the neighborhood. He did not consider an emailer with a great sense of humor to be worthy of investigation.

This is when Mr. CA Kling saw his door of opportunity. No more small town crimes and mysteries among his herd; he would get to test his skills on the real deal. He sat down at his computer and employed the best stalker and predator tactics he had learned on those crime shows. Never mind that they were always used by the criminal and never by the authorities, this called for the big guns.

Within a few minutes, he knew the email account holder's name, Mr. Johann PA Kling. He knew Mr. Johann PA Kling's address in Pennsylvania. He knew that Mr. Johann PA Kling was a pastor and worked at McDonald's Brothers and Cisterns in the Lord Church and he knew the name and phone number of the senior pastor at this church. Or at least he thought he knew. What he never ever considered was that maybe more than one person used that email account. He never ever considered that not all of the users of that account had such excellent writing skills and an over-the-top sense-of-humor. It also didn't occur to him that there was the slightest chance that no one was trying to groom his daughter by twice and done replying to their acclaimed 4-H leader's mistaken email. In fact, it appears as if he never ever considered a lot of things. But he was on a roll. He was about to be the first dairy farmer turned detective to close the biggest criminal ring in PA and CA history.

First on his to-do list was to call Mr. Johann PA Kling's boss at the McDonald's Brothers and Cisterns in the Lord Church. Mr. CA Kling could barely contain himself while waiting for the senior pastor to pick up. You can imagine his disappointment when it was a church administrator who answered instead. His disappointment was short-lived as he figured he could do a little more sleuthing first. He inquired about Mr. Johann PA Kling and the administrator informed him that this particular pastor was on vacation.

HOLD THE PHONE! WHAT?!?!?!?!?! Mr. CA Kling found himself choking, unable to breathe, fear and trepidation gripping his heart with tentacles of dread. Mr. Johann PA Kling was gone from the office? On "vacation"? Surely it was obvious to more than just Mr. CA Kling that Mr. Johann PA Kling was on a plane on his way to CA at that very minute to finish what his dairy club emails had started. Mr. CA Kling coughed out a quick good-bye and said he'd call back later. He spent a sleepless night guarding his home, moving his dairy herd into the house, thereby creating a barrier between his CA Kling family and the criminal mastermind he now knew as Mr. Johann PA Kling.  

The next morning he was bleary-eyed and stubble-faced but he was ready to try again. This time his call to the McDonald's Brothers and Cisterns in the Lord Church was picked up by the boss man. He hurriedly informed his new friend the senior pastor that he had a child predator on his leadership team. His proof? A string of highly suspicious (but hilarious and outrageous) emails from a certain Mr. Johann PA Kling on his payroll who was also missing "on vacation" while really on his way to CA to do away with all of the CA Klings. He informed said senior pastor that he had also called the local McDonald's community police and they were watching Mr. Johann PA Kling.

Thankfully, the senior pastor does not watch crime shows, not even old Columbo reruns. He didn't see things the same way as Mr. CA Kling. When Mr. Johann PA Kling returned (not from CA), the two chatted about Mr. CA Kling and his accusations. Mr. Johann PA Kling was clueless and dumbfounded. He would never do these things of which he was being charged. They both left the meeting confused and unsure how to proceed. So Mr. Johann PA Kling did the only thing he could; he called Mrs. PA Kling. He told her the whole story and her ears perked when she heard him say two emails to a favored 4-H dairy farmer.

HOLD THE PHONE! WHAT?!?!??!?!?! Mrs. Kling practically shouted, "Wait a minute. I sent those emails and I certainly wasn't stalking anyone! I was copying the snuggie texter!"  Mr. Johann PA Kling was not amused. He hung up the phone, contacted a divorce attorney, had papers drawn up, took them home to Mrs. PA Kling, and employed the same silent treatment that was typically effective for Mrs. PA Kling. He didn't watch crime shows himself but his wife did. He knew what these kinds of accusations could mean to a pastor. He wasn't taking any chances; he had to separate himself from the real emailer swift and sure.

But Mrs. PA Kling does enjoy a good Law and Order or CSI on occasion. She knew that no crime had been committed. She knew that she would never even hurt a flea. Well, actually, she is known for squishing fleas found on the dog. She has also been guilty of paying her kids a quarter for each stink bug flushed. But when looking at the facts, it was clear that at this point, Mr. CA Kling was guiltier of stalking the PA Klings than the PA Klings were of stalking anyone anywhere. The only reason they knew anything at all about him was because he had taken the time to stalk and accuse Mr. Johann Kling and let slip his state of origin. So Mrs. PA Kling did the only thing she knew to do; she suggested that they just call the local McDonald's police department and give them the whole story. They did. They laughed. She even offered her phone number so Mr. CA Kling (who probably already had her number) could call and she could apologize for her jocularity which he clearly didn't share. The officer passed that information along but Mr. CA Kling never called. He was either too busy moving the herd out of the house or was on to the next perceived crime wave.

And Mr. Johann PA Kling eventually rescinded the divorce papers although he did make Mrs. PA Kling promise never ever to post or email anything in cyberspace until first having it approved by him.

All's well that ends well.

But don't mention anything to Mr. Johann PA Kling. This story traumatizes him.

1 comment:

  1. This would make a great play!