LAB SCHOOL SANDBOX – Mrs. Frisby’s first grade class went wild Monday after Thomas the Tank Engine did not return from his lunchtime adventure.
“It’s very scary… um, and, um, he wasn’t where he likes to be in Barbie’s castle, and um, I dunno, maybe he died or something,” reported first grader Ellie Bantar. Classmate Tommy Ridgetruck shared similar concerns.
“We was, we was playing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and um, uh, uh, I dunno, we didn’t find Thomas, even when I was Leonardo,” Ridgetruck revealed. Mrs. Frisby, full-time friend and part-time teacher, told the Enabler that while toys often go missing, they tend to return within fifteen minutes of the start of clean-up time.
“The fact that Thomas has been missing for two whole days now is a cause of great concern to the students. Rumors indicate he might have been swooped up by an eagle or stolen by a rival class. Look at this ‘missing’ poster Robert made. Isn’t it cute? Robert, Robert, come explain to the news-lady what you put in the background,” Mrs. Frisby said.
“Thomas is a very popular toy. If we don’t find him, we will almost certainly have to replace him, and the toy budget gets tight around this time of year. Teachers always want new water guns and bubble blowers come springtime,” stated Mr. Havermitch, principal.
Students from UCLA, where the Lab School is located, have been recruited to help search for Thomas. Search parties in groups of six have been exploring the campus’s underground tunnels at night and various nooks and crannies during the day. Ornithology students have been scanning the skies with binoculars in case Thomas really was swooped up by an eagle.
Psychology graduate student James Moore, shared a different take with the Westwood Enabler.
“What if Thomas ran away? What if he’s not running, but trying to find himself? I think the students in the class are purposely overlooking Thomas’s whereabouts in an attempt to express their desire for a discovery of the inner self. They know where he is, they just can’t admit it to themselves. They can’t stand to lose their sense of adventure so early. They can’t get swooped up by eagles or get kidnapped themselves, so they have to create a world where someone they identify with can. And they’ve found that person in Thomas, that lovable blue Socialist. Godspeed, Thomas. Godspeed,” wrote Moore in a public statement on the school’s psychology department website.
The search for Thomas will continue until the toy is found or Lab School staff is able to purchase a replacement. At press time, police are searching the botanical gardens for any signs of Thomas.