It Happened to Me

The Mushrooms--Part 1

Many people like to eat mushrooms. The mushrooms we buy in the store are safe to eat. Some people like to pick mushrooms in the wild, but they have to be very careful, because some toadstools are poisonous even if they look safe to eat.

When my friend and I returned to our cabin after a day of bird hunting, he suggested we pick the mushrooms growing around there and fry them with the steaks we brought. I thought that was a great idea. After we picked the mushrooms, I went to work cooking dinner. It smelled very good, and we started to eat.

"I'm sure glad you know about mushrooms, Henry," I said while I was eating.

"I thought you were the expert," he said, putting down his fork. "I don't know a mushroom from a toadstool." We stopped eating the food right away and fed some to the dog instead. It walked away. When we went outside later, the dog was lying there dead.

We panicked. We hurried to the nearest town with a hospital, had our stomachs pumped and didn't get back until the next morning.

Then a man came to our door. He said his car had hit a dog the night before. Its leg was hurt, but it went away in our direction before he could get to it. He wanted to apologize if it was ours.

Adapted from a first person story by E.M., taken from The Detroit News circa 1980

Comprehension Questions

Who was the mushroom expert?
1. The person telling the story.
2. His friend Henry.
3. Neither of them.

Why did they stop eating the food?
1. Because the dog died.
2. Because they got nervous when they found out neither of them knew about mushrooms and toadstools.
3. Because it didn't taste so good.

Why did they have their stomachs pumped?
1. Because they didn't feel very well after eating the mushrooms.
2. Because the mushrooms were poisonous.
3. Because they thought the dog died because of the mushrooms.

Why did the dog die?
1. It ate some poisonous mushrooms.
2. A man hit it with his car.
3. The story didn't tell us.

Link to Part Two