s Yitzy walked to yeshivah his mind was racing with many different thoughts. First, he thought about the Mishnayos competition. It was only ten days away, and he would be up against the smartest kid in the whole school. The thought of making a fool out of himself in front of his whole yeshivah made his stomach hurt.

Then he thought about Mr. Burtman leaving games on his doorstep. Just imagining that man being near his apartment made his stomach hurt even more.

Finally, he thought about poor Mr. Greenbaum, lying in a hospital somewhere. Was he okay? Why could no one could tell them how Mr. Greenbaum was doing?

As he approached the yeshivah building, he sighed and took a deep breath. Once he was in yeshivah, he could focus on only one thing: paying attention in class. That would be the only way he could even hope to win the Mishnayos competition.

“Hey, Yitzy,” called a voice from behind him. “I heard you got a Thinkertinker. Did you bring it with you to school today?”

Yitzy turned around and saw Michoel Gold.

“Hi, Michoel,” he said, “what did you just ask me?”

Michoel pointed to Yitzy’s knapsack.

“Did you bring your Thinkertinker with you?” he asked again. “I heard those things are amazing. My cousin Shimmy has one. He told me it’s so much fun, he can’t stop playing with it.”

Yitzy wasn’t so happy. “How did you know about my Thinkertinker?”

“What do you mean?” asked Michoel. “You’re the first kid in the whole town to get a real Thinkertinker. Everyone is talking about it. Did you stay up all night playing with it?”

Yitzy’s stomach began to hurt again. Yossi must have told everyone about the game.

Oh no, he groaned to himself. The last thing I need is for everyone in school to ask me about the game Mr. Burtman gave me.

Unfortunately for Yitzy, that is exactly what happened.

“Hey Yitzy! Can I try your Thinkertinker during recess?” cried one boy.

“No way!” cried another. “I asked him first.”

“Hey! No fair!” cried a third boy. “I let Yitzy be the first one to catch my new football last week. I should go first with his Thinkertinker.”

Yossi came running over. There was a big smile on his face, and he was waving a paper in his hand.

“Don’t worry Yitzy,” he said, “I’m here to help. Instead of everyone in the school fighting for a turn, I made a list for you. On this paper is the name of every kid in our class. Their names are written in the order of their turn. Of course, since I’m your best friend, I’ll go first.”

Yitzy glared at Yossi. The smile disappeared from Yossi’s face.

(Excerpted from Mishpacha Jr., Issue 759)