• The True Telling of Jack and the Beanstalk

    Jack Beanstalk was around 3 years old when the giant showed up. He couldn't remember exactly what happened because of his young age, but his parents remembered it well.
    His parents say the giant had shown up stomping and yelling, frightening all the town horses, and crushing the land around the nearby lake. They said the lake used to be beautiful, and deep enough to go diving in, now the lake was muddy and shallow. Jack's father went to reason with the giant, and got a broken leg for his trouble.
    Jack's mother splinted his leg, and gathered their family in the cellar with a supply of dried apples and corn, to wait until the giant left. But he never did. After wreaking havoc on the town, the giant began to massage his feet, because when you step on buildings, sometimes the wood splinters get in your skin.
    After a while, the town came to accept the fact that the giant was never going to leave. They were saddened, but many of them had lived there their whole lives, and they were not going to leave just because some giant came along and smashed a few houses.
    Jack became friends with the giant as he grew older, asking him about what was up in the sky. He would constantly tease the giant about having his head in the clouds. Jack found out that the giant's name was Bill, and even though Bill sometimes stole cattle from the ranchers, and used travelers wagons for firewood, their friendship remained intact. As tolerant as Jack was of Bill's lifestyle, the day finally arrived when Jack could take no more.
    Jack was 9 years old, with a birthday coming up. There was supposed to be a caravan coming later that evening bringing all sorts of toys. Jack's parents had agreed to let him pick out a toy or two for him to play with. Jack had his eye on one toy in particular; a golden goose that made real goose sounds when you pulled a string in it's back.
    However, when the caravan arrived, Bill stole it and stashed it among his firewood, to be burned the next evening.
    Jack was furious. He went to Bill, and yelled at him and called him names, but name calling never does any good, and so Jack left toyless. He thought and thought for hours, then night came and he thought some more.
    Finally around midnight, and idea came to Jack. Bill’s water supply came from The Great Lake next to town. If the water supply was cut off, then Bill would leave.
    Jack knew he had only hours to put his plan in action before Bill woke up. He gathered all the salt from the homes in the town. He used his horses to pull the salt to the lake, and dump it in. He finished just as the sun was coming up, and he could hear the giant yawning in the distance. He ran his horses through the shallow lake to agitate the water and mix in the salt. He was hitching his horses back to his family’s wagon when Bill came walking up, each step a miniature earthquake. Jack whistled to his horses and he was off.
    Jack made it back to his house in time to see the giant take a huge gulp of water. Bill seemed to pause for a moment, surprised, and then he spit the water out and roared. The ground was trembling so much Jack had a hard time keeping his balance. Bill splashed the lake, which was unwise, and he roared even louder than before. There was salt water in his eyes as he stood up and bellowed so loud, to some it may have seemed he was being branded with a hot iron.
    Bill ran towards the Grand Canyon, not to be seen until many years later. But that’s another story.
    By now the townspeople had come out of their houses, wondering what the racket was. When they saw the giant leaving, they all threw off their hats and cheered loudly into the sky.
    The lake was renamed the Great Salt Lake, because of all the salt Jack had dumped into it, and Jack was going to be praised for finally getting rid of the giant. But Jack didn’t want any praise; he was just happy to get his golden goose.