Vinnie’s Mom Wants a Get Out of Jail Card


Vinnie’s mom checks her iWatch. She says, “Vinnie, I’ve got to start making lunch if we’re going to eat. We better finish the game. It’s been great fun.”

Vinnie says, “What time is it, Mom? I’m not hungry. Dexter’s hungry. Can I get him a snack?”

“No, you may not get Dexter a snack. His belly is practically dragging on the floor.”

“It’s all muscle, Mom. Dexter doesn’t have any fat,” says Vinnie.

Dexter hears his name. He’s up on all fours. The only time he hears his name is when he is taken outside, taken on a walk, or fed. Dexter figures since no one is holding a leash or has a coat on, it must be lunch time.

“What time is it, Mom. You forgot to tell me,” says Vinnie.

“It’s ten-fifteen.”

“Mom, we never eat this early on Saturdays. We can still play for another hour and a half.”

Vinnie’s dad glances at Vinnie’s mom, “Not too much gets by Vinnie, Dear.” He pauses for a moment, then looks at Vinnie, “Vinnie, Mom’s ready for your question.”

“Great, Mom. I have one I know you can answer. It’s about your mom,” says Vinnie.

“Vinnie, you didn’t reach into the lunch box for the question,” says Vinnie’s mom.

“That’s the best part of the game, Mom. I can make up questions as they pop into my head. Right now, my head sounds like a bag of popcorn in the microwave. Can I make some after you answer this question? I’ll make enough for you and Dad, too.”

Vinnie’s mom says, “Is there a get out of jail card in this game? I need one.”

Vinnie starts laughing. He says, “That’s a good one, Mom. You’re in the wrong game. We’re not playing Monopoly. That’s probably why you’re losing.”

“Please, Vincent, ask me the easy question about Gramma.”

“Okay, Mom. When Gramma and Grampa stay with us or we visit them, how come Gramma doesn’t have any teeth in her mouth when she gets up? Her lips curl over her gums and she looks scary. Follow up question, Mom. Where does she put her teeth when she takes them out? Didn’t she learn to floss and brush after every meal? Will I lose all my teeth like Gramma? Did she get a dollar under her pillow for each of her teeth? Did she wake up one morning and they were loose? Will she grow a third set of teeth if she eats right? Dad, Why is Mom closing her eyes and pressing her hands against her head?”

Vinnie’s dad stands up, stretches his arms over his head, “It might be a good idea if you made popcorn for us.”

Vinnie trots off to the kitchen carrying Rupert. Dexter follows Vinnie and Rupert. Dexter knows there will be no possible food action at the dinning room table until Vinnie returns. Besides, when Vinnie heads into the kitchen and his mom is in another room, Dexter sees a world of possibilities.

Vinnie’s dad starts rubbing Vinnie’s mom’s shoulders, “It’s okay, Dear. I apologize for everything even the things I don’t know I’m apologizing for.”

Vinnie’s mom twists her head slightly looking up at Vinnie’s dad from the table, “The apple didn’t fall far from the tree.”

Back in the kitchen, Vinnie puts a raw tofu hot dog in Rupert’s hands, “Rupert, Mom said I’m not allowed to feed Dexter now. She didn’t say anything about you. Give this hotdog to Dexter.” 

Vinnie bends over pressing Rupert’s front paws around a tofu hot dog. Dexter is on his haunches, his tongue hanging out leaving drool on the kitchen floor. Vinnie uses Rupert’s voice, “Dexter, stand.”

From the living room, Vinnie’s mom says to Vinnie’s dad, “OMG, I didn’t tell him Rupert couldn’t feed Dexter.


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