“Mom, Mom, Mom!” asks Vinnie from the back seat.
Vinnie’s Mom twists her head to slightly toward the backseat of the car. “Yes, Vincent?”
“Want to hear my side of the story about practice?”
“I think I’ve heard enough from Sister Janet.”
“What did she say, Mom. I was really good. Everybody was staring at me I was so good. I played my part really, really well,” says Vinnie.
Vinnie’s mom turns toward back toward the front. Without looking at Vinnie’s dad, she says, “You know he takes after your side of the family. Don’t disagree with me, I’m not in the mood. I am so embarrassed, Sister Janet told me she doesn’t think Vincent understands how to play a donkey. How hard is it to play a donkey?”
“Dad, if you don’t know, I can help,” says Vinnie from the back seat.
Vinnie’s mom turns slightly toward the back seat, “Not another word. Not another word. We will discuss this when we get home.”
“Can I talk to Rupert? Please. I need to talk to somebody. You are always telling me it’s no good to hold it in. That’s what you said your psychologist told you.”
Vinnie’s dad spoke, “Sister Janet doesn’t understand children, especially boys.”
“That’s right, Dad,” calls Vinnie.
“Vincent! Not another word,” advises his mom.
“But, Mom. She doesn’t. She got mad when she had all of us singing Silent Night, I sang it like a donkey. It doesn’t make sense for a donkey to sing words, does it, Mom?”
“Vinnie’s got a point, dear,” says his Dad.
“Thanks, Dad. I bet Santa is going to be good to you,” says Vinnie.
“I’m not so sure about that,” says Vinnie’s mother.
“I am, Mom. I know because I put in a good word with Santa for both of you. Can we hang stockings tonight, Mom, in case Santa comes early.”
“Christmas is four days away, Vincent. I promised Sister Janet you’d behave for the living nativity on Wednesday evening. You don’t want me to disappoint Sister Janet, right?”
“Mom, I don’t think any donkey in the world can lie still for forty-five minutes. Sister Janet got mad because I got up and walked around, but I walked around on all fours like a real donkey. I bet Mary and Joseph didn’t get mad when the donkey got up and walked around.”
Vinnie’s mom twists her head a bit toward Vinnie’s dad, “I’m surprised more women don’t become nuns.”
“Are you thinking of becoming a nun, Mom?”
“Dear, can you drive a little faster. I need a glass of wine,” says Vinnie’s mom.
“Vinnie?” asks his dad.
“If you can play the donkey part exactly the way Sister Janet wants you to play the part, we’ll go to laser tag on Thursday morning. How’s that sound?” asks his dad.
“Don’t bribe him,” says Vinnie’s mom.
“It’s okay, Mom. Dad can bribe me.”
“I feel a migraine coming on. Are we almost home?” says Vinnie’s mom.
“Do you want Rupert to rub your neck, Mom? Rupert is really good at making you feel better.”
Vinnie’s Mom turns around and faces Vinnie, “I love you, Vinnie. I cannot stay upset with you.”
Vinnie gives his mom a hug, then says, “I feel the same way about you, Mom. I can’t stay upset with you either.”