A short, beer belly dude, wearing a brown felt fedora tilted toward the left side, Alaskan parka with a fur lined hood pulled up over the fedora, a toothpick hanging out of the right corner of his mouth walks into The Lucky Canary.
No, it’s not Santa. The dude stops, scans The Lucky Canary, and says, “The name’s Bogey and Bogey’s back looking for his dame.”
Nick says, “If you’re looking for a dame, you’re looking in the wrong neighborhood. I heard the dames lives over on the Irish side of the tracks. Only broads live on this side of the tracks.”
Tony says, “I think the dames live in Braintree. There’s no dames around here.”
Joey says, “I saw a dame before I went in the joint.”
Tony says, “Was she lost?”
Joey says, “She was with the Thumb.”
Tina taps the Tuna’s forearm, “The Thumb?”
The Tuna says, “He’s in Cedar Junction doing twenty-five to life.”
Nick says, “That was no dame, that was Gina Carlini. She tried to act like a dame but couldn’t pull it off.”
Joey says, “That was Gina? Is she waiting for the Thumb or can I make a play?”
Bogey says, “This is about Bogey. Bogey is in love with the dame. The dame is Bogey’s soulmate even if she don’t know it. Bogey needs the dame like a fish needs water, like Bogey needs cheap beer.”
Tony says, “Who’s the dame got Bogey’s heart?”
“Bogey don’t know her name. She’s working her voodoo on him. She’s got Bogey doing the old soft shoe. She’s making Bogey’s heart go boom, boom, boom,” says Bogey.
Legos says, “Maybe Bogey needs to see a cardiologist.”
Joey says, “How can we help you if we don’t know the name of the dame.”
“Joey’s got a point,” says Nick.
“Yah, maybe Joey’s got four or five points,” says Tony.
“Bogey don’t know the name of the dame because the dame never told Bogey her name. The dame’s got ice water in her veins. The dame leaves no chicken on the bone if you know what Bogey means. Bogey’s been looking for her since Bogey got out of the joint.”
“How long was you in the joint?” asks Joey.
“About six hours, then the cops knew they had the wrong guy. Bogey and Bogey’s dame was set up. When Bogey and his dame get together ,they’re gonna even the score,” says Bogey.
“Even the score with who?” asks Nick.
“Bogey thinks it’s a PI who’s jealous of Bogey because Bogey was first in his class,” says Bogey.
Legos calls over, “Bogey doesn’t have class. What’s Bogey going order? If Bogey’s not gonna order, Bogey has to leave.” Legos makes a mental note to see a psychologist.
Bogey looks at the bar. He says, “Blues broad, can Bogey sit next to you because Bogey got the blues.”
Roxie says, “I’m practicing social distancing. Have a stool at the other end of the bar.”
Bogey walks to the end of the bar away from Roxie, “Bogey will have two cheap beers and a bowl of popcorn.”
“We don’t serve popcorn,” says Legos.
“Bogey thought this was a classy joint. Classy joints serve courtesy popcorn, nuts, nachos, pretzels, eggs, pickles, herring, miniature pizza pieces, and tiny hot dogs with toothpicks in them.”
“If you’re looking for a buffet, you’re in the wrong neighborhood,” says Legos.
“What’s Bogey gonna do with the dame if Bogey finds her?” asks Joey.
“Bogey’s gonna ask the dame to marry Bogey,” says Bogey.
Tina taps Tuna’s forearm, “Give me the word. He won’t feel a thing.”
The Tuna smiles. He says, “Bogey’s harmless. Bogey’s a couple of chips short of a full package. Bogey comes home with a dozen eggs and discovers there’s only ten in the crate.”
Roxie pulls out her iPhone and scans her playlists. She finds the music she wants, taps on it and counts in three measures.
The weather’s freezing cold
And, if I may be so bold
Somebody’s looking for trouble
And bad broad’s gonna bust his bubble
He’s thinking it’s a match made in heaven
The poor boy’s not rolling a seven.
“Roxie, Roxie, Roxie, please, please, please marry me. I’ll follow you to the ends of the earth,” says Tony.
Legos says, “That’s called stalking.”
Roxie says, “Thanks, Legos.”
Bogey unzips his parka, chugs down a cheap beer. When he finishes, he says, “Bogey wishes they sold cheap beer in the supermarkets so Bogey could buy a six pack and make protein shakes with cheap beer.”
“That’s disgusting,” says Roxie.
The Tuna whispers to Tina. Tina turns toward Bogey and says, “Fat man, you wanna know where you can find the dame?”
“Listen up beautiful broad. It might look like fat, but it’s all muscle,” says Bogey.
Tina says, “I never seen muscle jiggle and the only six pack you ever seen is in the cooler section at the supermarket.”
“Cut Bogey some slack. Bogey’s been binge eating since he met the dame. She’s stuck in Bogey’s brain like a car in rush hour traffic on the Southeast Expressway. Bogey thinks the dame is the only dame who can tame the Bogey.”
Tina looks at Nick who’s looking at Tony who’s looking at Roxie who’s looking at Legos who’s looking at Tuna who’s staring into his glass of wine.
Bogey chugs his second cheap beer, burps, and says, “Bogey’s leaving and Bogey’s not coming back until Bogey finds his dame.”
Legos says, “Have you tried Lena’s?”
Bogey tips his fedora to Roxie and Tina and heads toward the door. Before Bogey reaches the door, the door opens and . . .