THE FRENZIED CELL CALL
There's been an uprising over at the children's table.
They've taken grandma hostage. No, I can't speak any louder. I can't speak any louder because they'll find me. My cell battery is getting low. LISTEN TO ME! Send the cops over soon. They started eating the coconut custard pie and the pumpkin pie and now there’s no more pie and the biggest mess that you could ever imagine. Everybody's kinda’ bummed out, at least the few who aren’t sleeping it off, because the dessert is all gone and we're so freakin’ full we couldn't get up to stop the little bastards.
They also grabbed the stereo and said that we were gonna’ listen to their requests or else. What a happy thanksgiving this has turned out to be..........
PART TWO BLACK FRIDAY EPILOG - A HAPPY THANKSGIVING FOR ALL AS BRAT PACK SHENANIGANS ARE CURTAILED
My wife Amanda kept shaking her head as she asked me again “What happened?”
I left the front door open; the train wreck was over but the aftermath of the crisis brought a nasal aftertaste that was pleasant. There was an aroma of burnt turkey with a spicy hint of charcoal and leaves in the air. If they could bottle a wine with that combination of grace notes and aroma, I can imagine that it might be called Estate Winery Reserve Fall Down Burgundy Emberzass. And that my friend would be truth in advertising.
My wife’s eyes were tired as her lids tried to restrain the wide open gaze that was awaiting an answer. I turned to take one last look at the cops talking on the sidewalk. “That cop on the left told the other cop that it all came down to Gladys."
When we moved into the neighborhood, we had been warned about Gladys - the snitch, the voyeur who is always on her “watch”. Her real name is Sharon Gladola and she got tagged with her nickname of Gladys because she is just like the nosy character on Bewitched.
“The parents were passed out and after eating dessert, the Farklewadd kids got into a sugar frenzy. One relative who wasn’t sleeping was scared and hiding under a tablecloth as he tried to call a friend for help. Before his cell battery died, he was able to make his next call to a security company, but the operator thought he was drunk and hung up. The kids began screaming and their restlessness exploded.
There was an eruption of energy as they upended the card table in the den. As they ran a jogging pattern repeatedly through the first floor like a NASCAR event, with each pass they upped the ante. First they grabbed the remote control for the stereo and started blasting rock music, and then one of them threw some lighter fluid into the lit fireplace, and then they ran upstairs to the second floor. Once they raised the windows, that’s when you began to smell the smoke and hear the music; it was so loud that everybody heard the music. The parents started to wake up and stagger out of the front door and they began motioning for the kids to get out of the house.”
I walked over to our living room windows to close the drapes and turn on a lamp.
“People were saying that they started making faces and doing dance moves in front of a vanity mirror and then they ran back to the windows and they were sticking their tongues out and mouthing the words to Gladys “Hey baby – you’re next!” and then they started giving her the finger. And they weren’t just flipping her the bird, they were doing it in time to the music. That might have been when the music segued from the Ohio Players “Fire” into AC/DC “You Shook Me All Night Long” and the sirens were ringing out. You really missed it, and I can understand why you were taking a nap. You must be exhausted after making all of that great chow! It was delicious.”
Mandy looked a little disappointed. I continued my play-by-play.
“Gladys called 911 and said she was having a heart attack and that they should send the cops, the rescue squad and the fire department because a bonfire across the street had gotten out of hand. So that’s where we are now. They arrived in time to rescue the family. Gladys got a free ride to the emergency room. No one got hurt. The blaze was brought under control, and it looks like their house can be saved, and the neighborhood can survive. Everybody wins."
I slammed the front door closed and turned back to Mandy and I started mugging and rolling my eyes. I began to rub my stomach in a circular motion suggesting a great hunger for food and love. “OHHHHHHHHHHH……..Honey, do we have any-more stuffing?” I smiled at her with the biggest, oversized, vaudeville-goofy, second banana grin I could summon.
She looked at me and said “Stuffing?” After she slugged me in the stomach, I staggered a bit and took a few small steps and then sat down in the Barcalounger. I tried to discover where all of the oxygen had gone into hiding as I struggled to breathe.
Then I decided I might need to take a nap, too.