Walter and Steven
1 Walter Morgan is a very cordial boy. He climbs trees and rescues cats. He always says "Please" and "Thank you." Walter shares his lunch with his best friend. And he opens doors for the girls. Everyone agrees that Walter is a boy who is smart, kind, friendly, and handsome. But Walter does not have many friends. All the kids in town know why Walter does not have many friends. To be honest, Walter is kind of strange.
2 Every time Walter passes people on the street, they stop and stare at him. As soon as Walter turns the corner, the whispering starts.
3 "Oh, my goodness. Did you see what Walter was wearing?"
4 "I can’t believe he would go out in public in that outfit."
5 "He is such a nice boy. Why does he have to act so strange?"
6 Let me tell you there is a reason why people stare at Walter and whisper behind his back. Walter doesn’t dress or act like other fourth grade boys his age. Walter likes to wear his hair in a Mohawk. And he always wears his shirts and his pants inside out. He also wears his bicycle helmet wherever he goes and struts around town singing at the top of his lungs.
7 Walter does have a best friend named Steven who never wears socks with his shoes, even in the winter. Steven refuses to eat anything green, and he likes to wear old, worn out jeans every day. Steven used to be sad when people laughed at him. But now, Steven doesn’t mind being different from the other kids.
8 One Saturday afternoon, Walter and Steven were skateboarding at the local community park. After about an hour, the boys decided to take a break.
9 "That sure was fun," said Steven.
10 "Yep, it sure was," Walter replied.
11 "Hey, that girl over there is looking at us," Steven said.
12 "Oh, I know her. She used to live in my neighborhood. She thinks I’m weird," Walter said.
13 "Why does she think you’re weird?" Steven asked.
14 "You know. I have a Mohawk. And I don’t like to wear the same kind of clothes as other boys my age," Walter said.
15 "How come?" Steven asked.
16 "I don’t know. I just don’t like to wear regular clothes, and I like my hair. I think it looks cool," Walter replied.
17 "Do you care that people think you’re weird?" Steven asked.
18 ‘No, I don’t. I like myself just the way I am. I don’t care what other people look like. So why should they care what I look like?" Walter asked.
19"Yeah, I feel the same way. It’s okay to be different from the other kids. I’m really glad we are friends," Steven said.
20 "I know. Me too. Come on, let’s skateboard some more," Walter said.
21 Walter and Steven have a lot fun hanging out together. They like riding bikes, playing video games, eating pizza, and volunteering at the animal shelter. They don’t care if people think they are weird. Walter and Steven like each other just the way they are.