Little Never-Upset was a rough little guy, with a small body, and no matter how he was treated, he always smiled. He had a small cheerful face, and no matter how much the other toys argued, Little Never-Upset didn’t join in.
One night, when the clock struck midnight, Miss French Doll and Miss Cotton Doll began to bicker. “You treated me very badly the last time we sat in the carriage in the park,” said Miss Cotton Doll. “You wouldn’t think we lived in the same playroom.”
“Why do you always wear that old cotton dress?” asked Miss French Doll. “I have never been so embarrassed as when we met Miss Marie Doll in her beautiful clothes. I’m sure she wondered who you were.”
“You don’t look good since you broke your arm and had to go to the hospital,” replied Miss Cotton Doll, as they sat in the chairs on the porch.
“That’s something entirely different,” said Miss French Doll, shaking her head. “I couldn’t help having an accident.”
“And I can’t help wearing this cotton dress,” said Miss Cotton Doll. “The dress is painted on me, just like my face.”
“What’s going on?” cried Jack-in-the-box, jumping out of his box with his spring. “What’s the problem? What’s all this fuss between you two?”
“Woof, woof, woof!” barked the Wheel Dog. “Why are you making so much noise, Jack? I was just sleeping next to your box. It’s like a zoo in here with so much noise.”
Teddy Bear began to growl. “Everyone would think this was a menagerie instead of a playroom,” he said.
“Yeah, it seems like it,” said the Cotton Cat, whirling her tail fiercely. “Your growling makes it even worse.”
The Cotton Cat arched her back, ready to spring at Teddy, and the Wheel Dog barked, ready to jump at anyone who got in his way. Jack-in-the-box trembled with anger because the French Doll had made fun of him for not having legs and told him to shut up, while Miss Cotton Doll tried to think of something hateful to say to Miss French Doll.
It was at this moment that Little Never-Upset, who was calmly listening to all the squabbling of the other toys from his shelf, set a good example for the toys in the playroom. “Get off my shelf!” said the old Elephant, who always stood there and thought he owned it. As he spoke, he gave Little Never-Upset a slap with his trunk, and Little Never-Upset fell to the ground, right on his head!
All the toys stopped squabbling and were quiet to see what would happen. As quick as a flash, Little Never-Upset jumped back to his feet and rolled back and forth with laughter. “Well, you’re really the nicest little guy I’ve ever seen,” said Teddy. “Don’t you want to get even with the Elephant for knocking you down?”
“Not at all,” answered Little Never-Upset, “life is too short to quarrel. Think of all the fun you miss during the time you quarrel.”
“You’re actually right,” said Teddy Bear. “And what was all the fuss about anyway?”
No one could exactly say what it was about, and within a few minutes, everyone was laughing again and having fun, all because Little Never-Upset had appeared with a smile. However, the old Elephant took the time to lean over the shelf and call Little Never-Upset. “Hey, little guy, I’m sorry I was so rude,” he said. “You can come back up here and stay as long as you want.”
And Little Never-Upset nodded his head and said he would do that, smiling as if he had never fallen from the shelf.