It was a beautiful Spring day in Sesame Street Park. A light breeze fluttered the lush greenery that surrounded the bench upon which Mr. Johnson, also known as Fat Blue, was seated. He munched peacefully on his bologna and ham sandwich as he listened to the birds and squirrels going about their business. A rolled up newspaper lay beside him.
"Ahh." he sighed, "What a gorgeous day. The sun is shining, the air is sweet, and best of all, that furry blue fellow for once doesn't seem to be around during my lunch hour." He took another bite of sandwich and smacked his lips.
"Hm. This sandwich is a little dry though. Think I'll go get a drink of water…"
He placed the sandwich next to him and stood up. Humming, he walked to the nearest drinking fountain and waited for Farley, who was ahead of him, to be done.
Farley finished sipping and let out a satisfied breath. Turning to Mr. Johnson he said politely, "Here you go sir. All done."
"Thank you sonny." Mr. Johnson nodded to the little green boy, and Farley left.
Once done with his own drinking, Fat Blue also let out a thirst-quenched sigh before heading back to his bench, humming again. When he reached the bench, however, he noticed something missing.
"What the-?" he exclaimed, "My newspaper, it's gone! He-hey! Is there a detective around here?"
Instantly, Grover, sporting a New York style detective suit, was at Mr. Johnson's side.
"Why yes sir!" he beamed, "I am the detective around here. How may I help you?"
"Can you point me towards someone competent?" asked Mr. Johnson before gripping his head. "Why me, why him? Oh…"
Grover tapped his chin thoughtfully, and at last replied, "No sir, I am afraid I do not know this Competent person." He gasped suddenly. "Oh, but are you not that man from Charlie's? The one who always orders so many times, oh hello there..!" He waved despite their proximity.
Mr. Johnson groaned. "Yes, hi. Now will you help me with my case or not?"
Grover erected himself. "Yes sir! Tell me what is the problem, and I, cute, adorable detective Grover will solve it for you!"
"Alright." Mr. Johnson nodded curtly, "Well, I was eating my sandwich here, when I got a little thirsty. I put the sandwich down and went over to that drinking fountain for some water. When I returned, my newspaper was gone, but the sandwich was still here."
Grover crouched to inspect the sandwich.
"Ah, yes, I see what you mean sir!" he agreed, "So whoever took your newspaper must not like ham and bologna, huh?"
"No, I suppose not." shrugged Mr. Johnson.
"Aha!" shouted Grover, "I have it! I will question everyone holding a newspaper. If they do not like ham and bologna, then I shall know it is your newspaper they are holding. Oh I am so brilliant! Do not worry Mr. Johnson, I shall solve this 'newspaper caper'..! Aha ha…"
"But the park is so crowded today!" tried Mr. Johnson, "How is that one question going to help? I think you should look for more clues…"
His words fell on deaf ears, however, because while he was talking, Grover had walked to the middle of the pathway and was currently stopping Farley, who now carried a newspaper.
"Pardon me sir, but I believe you were at the scene of the crime." grilled Grover, "Do you not like ham and bologna sandwiches?"
"Oh I love ham and bologna!" smiled Farley, "Why do you ask?"
"Oh never mind, you are not the culprit…" passed off Grover, glancing around. He spotted another suspect. "Hey! You with the newspaper! Do you like ham and bologna??" He rushed off screen.
Meanwhile, Mr. Johnson was noticing something about the park bench.
"Hmm…" he observed, "This bench has a gap in the back. My newspaper was rolled up, and if I recall, there was a slight wind when I went to go get a drink. I wonder…"
He got on his hands and knees and crawled around the back of the bench. Sure enough, there was his newspaper, lodged in a bush.
"Aha!" the balding blue man exclaimed, and retrieved the paper. He straightened up to tell Grover he wasn't needed anymore, but instead found himself staring at a most amusing spectacle.
Grover was racing back and forth, chasing every 'suspect' in the park, screaming question after question. "Hey you! You like ham sandwiches? Yes? Ok, Ma'am? How 'bout you? Ham and bologna? Little boy? Yes? Alright it's not you, um…"
He stopped in front of Mr. Johnson's bench, panted, then shrieked at the top of his voice, "Doesn't anybody not like ham and bologna sandwiches?!" Receiving no answer, he moaned in frustration and ran after some more newspaper carriers.
Mr. Johnson settled himself back onto his bench, chuckling.
"Maybe I'll just watch this for a while…" he commented, and took another bite from his sandwich as Grover passed by him again.