The Princess and the Pea : A Fractured Fable

One day, as the most pampered princess in the entire world settled into her luxurious bed…

“Ouch!!” she cried.

Accustomed to such outbursts, her chambermaid simply cursed under her breath and went about her chores.


“Oh for pity sake, what now?”

“Something in my bed bit me. I swear it did.”

“I suppose you want me to find out what it is?”

“Like YES!”

With a well practiced snort, the much put upon maid heaved aside the covers.


“I felt it UNDER the mattress,” wailed the princess.

And she was right, for there it was, tucked beneath a foot of soft cotton, a single sesame seed.

OH MY GOD,” the princess cried, “How the hell did that get there?”

“Couldn’t say exactly,” replied the maid covering her morning bagel with a napkin.

The princess was beside herself, “This is the worst thing that ever happened to me, like ever.”

Again she was right. The princess had been so spoiled and so protected that finding something as tiny as a sesame seed wedged under her mattress was indeed the worst thing that happened to her, like ever.

“I need to tell the world about this,” she proclaimed.

“I’ve just the thing,” her maid confided.

The princess raised an inquiring eyebrow.


“Never heard of it.”

“You will love it. It’s the perfect place for self-absorbed people to show off.”

“Something like that would never work for me?”

“Why not?”

“I am not people.”

“All the better,” her chambermaid explained, “that would make you an influencer.”

And so it was.

The princess informed the entire world about the sesame seed and how much it hurt and the entire world responded with rapt attention.

And why would it not?

For isn’t the drama of a pampered princess finding a sesame seed under her mattress the very thing to take one’s mind off the trivial worries of everyday life?

Within minutes, her followers exceeded a million.

“Oh dear,” the princess thought aloud, “now that the world is watching me, as well it should, what do we follow it with?”

“I have just the thing,” her maid confided, “another mattress.”


“Each day we will add a mattress to your bed and each day, if it is again the worst thing that ever happened to you, like ever, you get to tell a breathless world about it.”

OH MY GOD, that is such a good idea.”

And so it was.

With each passing day, the world became more and more mesmerized.

People couldn’t get enough.

The second mattress brought two million followers to the herd.

The third mattress – three million…

And so forth….

Eventually, almost the entire world was fixated on the drama of a growing pile of mattresses that failed to protect the princess from the bite of a single sesame seed…

Until the princess felt…


Not a bite…

Not a pinch.


“Now what do we do?” wailed the princess.

“I’ve just the thing.”

A few moments later.

OUCH!! Holy Moly, what was THAT?”

The maid confessed, “I slipped a pea under the pile.”

OH MY GOD, it felt like a rock and hurt like hell. THAT was the worst thing that every happened to me, like ever. In fact it is the worst thing that every happened to…”

“Don’t say it,” warned the chambermaid.


“Now you did it.”


“What’s that?


Her maid sighed. “It is the sound of utter disgust.”


In less time than it took to describe it, not even the proverbial crickets were following the princess on TicToc.

“What happened?” cried the princess. “Why is no one paying attention to ME?”

“Honey,” the chambermaid told her, “people expect arrogance, self-absorption and cluelessness from their royals.”


“But you only get two out of three.”





Are you paying attention?

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