Vinnie Decides to Wing It When He Gives His Speech


Vinnie’s mom takes Vinnie’s dad’s iPhone and moves it as far away from him as possible. Vinnie’s dad turns toward Vinnie’s mom and says, “Why’d you do that?”

“If you need me to tell you a reason, that’s the reason,” says Vinnie’s mom.

Vinnie picks up Rupert and holds Rupert in front of his face. He jiggles Rupert and uses his falsetto voice to speak for Rupert, “Good one, Mom. Dad’s got to pay attention to Vinnie.”

“Thank you, Rupert,” says Vinnie’s mom. She realizes her compliment was sincere. She wonders if this means she’s fallen off the edge.

Rupert continues to speak, “The next one to speak is the next 4th grade class President. Please hold your applause until Vinnie finishes.”

Vinnie’s mom’s jaw drops open. Vinnie’s dad is lost without his iPhone near his hand. He keeps staring at it. Vinnie’s Mom points toward Vinnie, and says, “Al, Vinnie is over there.” Vinnie’s mom moves Vinnie’s dad head in the direction of Vinnie.

“Thanks, Dear. My mind went blank for a moment,” says Vinnie’s dad.

Vinnie’s mom responds, “Do you want me ask Doctor Sampson if they have a support group for men who have to keep checking their fantasy football teams?”


“It’s worse than you thought, Mom,” says Vinnie.

Vinnie’s mom turns back to Vinnie, “Let’s hear it.”

Vinnie tosses a smile to his mom that would melt an iceberg. Vinnie’s mom thinks, he really is going to win. It doesn’t matter what he says.

Vinnie says, “My name is Vinnie and I want to be your 4th grade president. The only reason Tommy is running is because he is the biggest brown nose in the school. And, Megan thinks she should be president because she hasn’t missed a day of school. I want to be your president to change things. I don’t think we should have homework on Fridays so we can enjoy the weekend. Every Wednesday we should have free ice cream in the lunch room, and if a teacher is mean, they should go to the office or at least go in time out until they calm down. One more thing, if I’m elected president I think lunch should be one hour instead of thirty minutes. I’ll think of more things that will make 4th grade better, but this is a start. Here are my personally signed Vinnie for President papers to stick on your lockers. They’ll be worth a lot of money when I become President of the United States.”

Vinnie’s mom turns toward Vinnie’s dad and says, “Say something.”

Vinnie’s dad says, “Can I have my iPhone now?”

“I want you to give Vinnie feedback about his speech,” says Vinnie’s mom.

Vinnie’s dad says, “Okay. Vinnie, I like the way you gave your speech without relying on notes.”

“Thanks, Dad. I was winging it, just like you do in court,” says Vinnie.

Vinnie’s mom jumps in, “You were winging it? You didn’t write it down and practice it?”

“I practiced it about seven times, Mom. Each time it comes out different. Rupert and Dexter told me all seven time were good and every one should vote for me. I thought you’d be proud of me because I didn’t say Mrs. Mavis’s name. That’s was good, right, Mom?”

Vinnie’s mom says, “If you make this speech, Mrs. Navis will send you to the office. You know that will happen,”

“That’s what I was thinking, Mom.”

“You were?”

“Un huh. If she does, everybody will vote for me. Rupert told me it was a smart idea.”

Vinnie’s mom turns her attention toward Rupert, “Rupert I appreciate you helping Vinnie. Do you think you can give him different advice?”

Vinnie’s dad touches Vinnie’s mom arm, “You know your asking Rupert to do something.”

“Un huh. Doctor Sampson wanted to keep Rupert so she could talk to him. If a psychologist wanted to do this, I think I might try it.”

Vinnie’s holding Rupert in front of his face. Rupert says, “Me and Dexter talked about it when Vinnie was at school and winging it is the best way to go. If Vinnie wings it, he can play with Dexter and me instead of wasting his time writing it.”

Vinnie’s mom says, “Vinnie, run down to Joey’s house and play with him for an hour.”

“Thanks, Mom,” says Vinnie picking up Rupert and running toward the front door. Dexter chases after him howling and barking.

“Why did you do that, Dear,” says Vinnie’s dad.

“I’m going to soak in the tub for an hour. Bring me a glass of wine. Do not bother me. Do not say another word to me. I have to get a grasp of a thread of reality before I slip over the edge.

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