Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » The Adventures of Mr. Fly

The Adventures of Mr. Fly

By: Ardis E. Parshall - February 26, 2014

From the Relief Society Magazine, March 1928 –

The Adventures of Mr. Fly

By Ann M. Bennion

The first place I remember in my life was a nice, dirty pig pen. I must have been very tiny because there were millions of us in one little space.

Oh! Ho! it was a fine place. Just billions of big, fat germs, just what us flies like to live on.

One day I decided to venture out into the world, so I left the rest of the family, and gathering a lot of germs on my legs, I started out. I soon came to a house where there were several children playing. Of course I wanted to be generous with them so I unloaded my germ-laden legs on them and flew on into the house. There, in the first room, lay a little girl tossing with fever. I heard someone say, it’s typhoid.

I cold see several other flies playing around her so I went over, and there were all kinds of fine, fat typhoid germs, so I loaded my legs with them and flew into the next room where a baby was playing on the floor. I deposited some of my germs on him, then again I flew outside but just as I flew out there was a strong breeze struck me and blew me a long distance.

By the time I was able to land I was very hungry. I searched all around but was unable to fin done thing to eat. I looked around and everything seemed so strange. There were very few flies. I just thought to myself, “This is a poor place for Mr. Fly to live.”

I decided I’d go in the house but as I hit what I thought was the doorway I almost broke my neck for there was a screen stretched. I crept around and around for almost two hours trying to find a place to get in. I thought, “Well, Mr. Fly, you are doomed to die from hunger.” But all at once the screen opened and let me tell you I lost no time in flying through the door. prospects seemed much worse inside for everything was so clean I could find nothing at all to drink or eat.

Soon I heard a girl say, I am going to put out some formaldehyde for these flies.” Of course I thought she was just feeling sorry for us. So I sat down on the table and waited. Soon she came with a saucer and placed it right by me. I went up and drank from the dish. Oh! it was good and even sugar in it. But just at this stage, oh, dear me, my head, my stomach, oh, all over I was so sick.

So I decided to lie down until I felt better. I saw my few comrades lying about me. Some were moaning, some were groaning, but oh, something was happening. Now we were all being gathered together into a dish pan. I turned over and could see we were going toward a big flame of fire. I knew this was my last chance, so I picked up all the strength I could muster up and flew across the room to the door. I stayed there until the fresh air had revived me. I felt I must have something to eat or I should surely perish.

Just then someone brought out some nice roast beef. I thought I’d be very careful how I ate of it, but it was not necessary to prepare at all, for just as I went to light I heard someone say, “Swat that fly.” Of course I didn’t know what they meant, but I thought it was time for me to go, but just as I turned something came smash down on me breaking my wing and stunning me.

I could not say how long I lay there on the floor, but when I came to, I looked up and saw the screen open. I thought right then, “This is no place for me,” so I flew out of the door and out to the pig pen. It was also very clean but my attention was soon drawn to a screen in some little slats inside of which was flies.

I thought I should like to go in so I hunted around until I found a little funnel leading into it. But when I got in there was no way of getting out.

I have been and talked to some of the other flies and find out it is a fly trap and here I am doomed to stay until I die. But although this is a tragic death it is better than to live in that spotless, clean house where one’s life is always in danger.



  1. Entertainment, fiction, and public health announcement. These old magazines didn’t limit themselves at all.

    Comment by seth — February 26, 2014 @ 10:46 am

  2. I have absolutely no idea what kind of comment I expected on this, seth, but yours is perfect! Thanks.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — February 26, 2014 @ 11:32 am

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