Junior Alexa Mathisen crafted a news story based on the dish-and-spoon nursery rhyme for the Octagon's competition for new staffers. This fiddle-playing cat had a hand in helping the dish escape in Mathisen's second-place story.

Fiddling cat, jumping cow and escaping dish featured in junior Alexa Mathisen’s second-place story

During Octagon Boot Camp a week before school started, new staffers learned about the 5 W’s and the H (who, what, when, where, why and how) and the inverted pyramid style, which outlines how to prioritize information in news stories (from most to least important). After becoming familiar with the journalistic basics, they were presented with an unusual assignment: Write a brief news story about a nursery rhyme. 

Former editor-in-chief Emma Williams, ’15, (now a freshman at Cornell University) chose the top four stories. Every day this week we’ll be posting the winners’ assignments.

Junior Alexa Mathisen earned second place for her news story inspired by the dish-and-spoon rhyme.  

Hey, diddle, diddle,

The cat and the fiddle,

The cow jumped over the moon;

The little dog laughed

To see such sport, 

And the dish ran away with the spoon.

A dish has been declared missing and was last seen on Saturday evening around 10 p.m.

Her father, Diddle, said she had been spending a lot of time with her spoon, despite his disapproval, and he believes she ran away with him.

Her sister claims to have known her plan.

“She was concerned someone would catch her, so she distracted the whole town by having her animals perform amazing tricks, such as her cow jumping over the moon and her cat playing the fiddle, and it worked,” she told police.

The entire town gathered outside Saturday night to watch these seemingly impossible events occur, and when the dish snuck out the back door, her dog didn’t even bark or follow because he was laughing so hard from seeing the cow perform such a sport, a witness confirmed.

“I kept hearing villagers calling me from outside to look at my animals, so I couldn’t have possibly seen my dish run away,” Diddle said.

The local police continue to search for the dish and her spoon.

By Alexa Mathisen

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