June 18, 2021

Politics & News

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Clifford the Big Red Dog’s Latest Adventures

3 min read

Clifford the Big Red Dog has entertained children and parents alike for more than sixty years. In that time, the lovable pooch has come to be known for two things: his playful high jinks and his enormous size. With that in mind, we at Scholastic are proud to announce these upcoming additions to the Clifford series:

After witnessing a regular dog playing fetch with its owner, Clifford decides he wants in. Mistaking a telephone pole for a stick, Clifford rips it out of the ground, causing a three-block blackout on Birdwell Island. As a concerned crowd forms around the building-sized dog, Clifford’s owner, Emily, convinces him to put the pole down—but, when he drops it, he inadvertently cleaves a school bus in half.

Following the bus incident, Clifford’s neighbors call an emergency meeting to discuss the risks of living in such close proximity to a fifty-foot-tall Labrador retriever. After heated testimony from several concerned parents, Emily takes the stage and explains that Clifford is fundamentally a good boy. Just then, there’s a commotion in the parking lot. Turns out that Clifford, who has been tied up outside the community center, noticed a squirrel and took off after it, demolishing everything in his path. The community members assemble outside the front door just in time to see Clifford bursting through the newly constructed wing of the Birdwell General Hospital.

Seventeen people are dead. Although Clifford’s damage to Birdwell General was mostly structural, he caused the roof to collapse in the radiology wing, crushing everyone inside. Cable news networks descend on the island. The Wall Street Journal’s editorial board publishes an opinion piece titled “Clifford the Dog: Man’s Worst Enemy,” and PETA officially changes its name to PETAEC (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals Except Clifford). Meanwhile, Clifford goes swimming in Birdwell Harbor and ends up sinking a yacht two miles offshore. Bad news for Cliff—it’s the mayor’s boat.

Pursued by a small army of police officers, U.S. Marshals, National Guardsmen, bounty hunters, and hastily deputized dogcatchers, Clifford and Emily sneak aboard a cargo ship bound for international waters.

Clifford is almost immediately spotted in the Dominican Republic. He’s wearing a scarf and sunglasses, but, like, come on. Punta Cana officials turn Clifford over to the F.B.I., whose agents gain his complete coöperation by giving him some peanut butter.

Clifford is locked away in an enormous subterranean cell. The cost to taxpayers for keeping Clifford fed is three million dollars a year.

A ninety-thousand-metric-ton intergalactic space monster descends on Manhattan. No one knows how to stop the tentacled creature. It bats away military helicopters as if they were flies, and gunfire just makes it angrier. The United Nations Security Council calls an emergency meeting. After three hours spent getting nowhere, a cough from the back of the room cuts through the shouting, and everyone turns to see a gray-haired scientist, shrouded in shadow. The old man slowly rises and says one word: “Clifford.” There is a silence. Then, one by one, the people begin to nod. They release Clifford from his cell, air-dropping him into Times Square, where he quickly but accidentally kills the space creature by trying to roughhouse with it. The world is grateful to Clifford. The President pardons the Big Red Dog for his past behavior, noting that Clifford simply operates within a different moral paradigm than the rest of humanity. “He is not our pet,” the President explains from behind the Resolute desk. “In fact, in some ways, it is we who are his pets.”

Clifford thinks he sees a huge cat, but it’s really a kite, and he gets tangled in the kite.

Asher Perlman
2021-03-17 14:00:00

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