Study Guide

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing Chapter 3

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Chapter 3

The Family Dog

  • Mr. Hatcher's next big project is the new commercial for Toddle-Bike.
  • At the same time, Peter has also perfected the art of standing on his head, which is super impressive to his family, especially Fudge.
  • Fudge has decided to stop eating, which worries their parents. The only thing that works is having Peter stand on his head. This makes Fudge laugh, and their mother can quickly stuff some food in his mouth.
  • Next, Fudge decides to pretend to be a dog while they're all eating dinner. Their mother says that if he's a dog, he'll eat his food on the ground.
  • She fixes up a plate and puts it on the ground, then pets him like he's a real life dog. It's a weird tactic, but it works and Fudge takes two bites of his dinner.
  • Fudge continues to eat underneath the table for the next week. Their grandma comes over with some new ideas for Fudge to eat like a normal human being.
  • She makes him a milkshake and tells him that if he drinks it all, there'll be a surprise at the bottom. When Fudge drinks it and finds that there's nothing at the bottom, he throws a tantrum. Grandma ends up leaving.
  • Mrs. Hatcher drags Fudge from doctor to doctor, but they all tell her the same thing: Just let him get hungry. If he's hungry enough, he'll eat.
  • Things come to a head one night when their mother cooks a special meal of lamb chops just for Fudge while everyone else gets stew. Unfair.
  • Fudge refuses to eat the lamb chops and demands corn flakes instead, which is totally okay with Peter because he gets to eat the yummy dinner.
  • Then after his mother makes him a bowl of cereal, Fudge again throws a tantrum and refuses to eat.
  • Well, at that point, their father has had it. He tells Fudge that if he won't eat his dinner, then he'll certainly wear it.
  • Fudge calls his bluff, and so their father carries him into the bathroom, places him in the tub, and dumps the bowl of cereal over him.
  • Dad returns to the dinner table while Fudge sits in the bathroom, crying and wailing. No one goes to comfort him for a change.
  • Amazingly enough, this works. (Actually it's not so amazing, just parental common sense.)
  • The next day, Fudge is back in his booster chair and eating food like a normal kid.

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