🐤 The Lucky Canary ~ Tony’s Practicing His Pickup Lines and Getting Nowhere


Tina taps Roxie’s hand, “We’ll talk wedding later. I can’t miss this.” Tina pushes away from the bar and heads toward the corner table. Legos follows with a bottle of Jack Daniels and two shot glasses, one for Tina and the other for the Tuna.

Tuna nods to Tina, “Ah, beautiful broad, nice of you to join us. I’ll introduce you to revenge broad, otherwise known as Linda Pino. Linda’s okay, she got hooked up with a jackass and gave him what he deserved.”

Linda says, “I’ll die for you, Tuna. There is no man on this planet like you.”

“What about me?” asks Joey.

Tina and Linda stare at Joey.

Joey sticks both thumbs in his mouth.

Tony says, “Linda, you need a man who treats you right. A guy who can read between the lines. A guy who knows what a broad wants before the broad knows she wants it. Where do I apply?”

The Tuna nods at Linda, “Don’t mind the Tone. He’s been watching a cable reality show about pickup lines. So far, he’s batting zero.”

“But, Tune. I gotta try if I’m gonna score.”

“That’s how high school guys talk. How old are you? Fifteen?” asks Tina.

“What’s age got to do with it?” asks Tony.

Tina jabs a finger at Nick, “This the way you think? You only out trying to score, that’s why you don’t want to make a commitment?”

The Tuna pulls on his left earlobe thinking it doesn’t matter the day, the time, who’s sitting at this table, it’s always entertaining.

“But, but, but Tinzi, wasn’t I the one who went to Father Pat to set the date? Wasn’t I the one who told Dog we was getting married? Wasn’t I the one who said, ‘Worcester is pretty in the fall? Wasn’t I the one who said picking apples was the perfect honeymoon? If you don’t like picking apples, wasn’t I the one that said going to a Sox day night double header can’t be beat for a honeymoon. Fenway franks are the best.”

“We’re sposed to be married in June. You don’t pick apples in June, you pick them in the fall. I’m not going to any Sox game for a honeymoon,” snaps Tina.

“How about asparagus? I hear out in Hadley, they grow asparagus. That’s way at the other end of the state. I don’t know if there’s an airport there. If that’s a problem, I’m okay with postponing the wedding to the fall,” says Nick.

Tina’s righthand dips into her handbag and extracts her icepick. She jabs it at Nick, “If you are playing with my heart, I’m turning you into a needlepoint.”

Linda says, “Fist bump, sister. Don’t let him do the jim jam, rag tag, and the neighborhood shuffle on you.”

Nick glances at the Tuna for a lifeline. The Tuna smiles and sips his wine. “You’re flying solo, Nick. You are gonna figure out how to land safely or you are in for a crash landing.”

The door to The Lucky Canary opens. Bogey steps in, stops, tips his fedora to Roxie, and glances over to the corner table. Bogey says, “Bogey wants to know if the cute thing in the orange jump suit is a dame, a broad, or Bogey’s soulmate.”

Joey says, “I ain’t cute. I ain’t a dame. I ain’t a broad. And, I’m not Bogey’s soulmate.”

Bogey says, “Bogey was talking about the other orange jump suit.”

Roxie whispers to Legos, “They got a vaccine for Covid. They got a vaccine for hepatitis. They got a vaccine for almost everything that needs a vaccine. But, they can’t figure out a vaccine for what happens to you once you move into the neighborhood.”

Linda swirls on her chair, “You can tell Bogey I’m a broad who’s wound up tighter than spool of thread. I’m wound up tighter than spandex pants two sizes to small for me. I’m wound up tighter than skinny fitting jeans I have to have help putting on. I’m looking for a good man.”

Bogey says, “Bogey says Bogey is the man to help you with your jeans. Bogey is looking for a good woman. The scratch off queen told Bogey that was the meaning of life for Bogey.”

“I don’t know this Bogey. Who is Bogey? Can Bogey help me beat a bum rap?”

Bogey says, “Bogey is the ace of diamonds. Bogey is the cream in your coffee. Bogey is the butter on your toast. Bogey is the parmesan on your pasta.”

Linda looks over to Tina, “What’s he talking about?”

Tina says, “Bogey is trying to work some free wheeling, bottom of the deck dealing, no telling where it’s gonna go move on you, Linda.”

Bogey sachets over to the corner table and points a finger at Linda, “You better stop and think about what you’re saying.”

“How so,” says Linda.

“Bogey don’t want no two-timing, out all night drinking, honky tonking, thinking about some other dude kind of woman.”

“What kind of woman does Bogey want?” asks Linda.

Bogey wants a woman who likes cheap beer. Likes to drink it from the can. A woman who knows her way around the dance floor. That’s who Bogey’s looking for.”

“Hold on Linda. I thought we had something going. What you got to think about? We both stole the warden’s car. We can’t be caged. We gotta be free. We both look good in an orange jump sui. I’m crazy about you, babe. I mean loco, nuts, certified loonie,” says Joey laying his hand down believing he won the pot.

The Tuna says, “Bogey, I think you misinterpreted the scratch off broad. Maybe you got to ask the scratch off broad about Josie Graziano. Didn’t you say, Josie makes your heart go pitter patter, boom boom diddie boom boom. That sounds like the definition of soulmate to me. You better head on down to Lena’s. Lena is the neighborhood expert on relationships. Better check it out before Josie gets away.

Bogey tips his fedora to the Tuna, “Thank you, Mr. Tuna. Bogey don’t forget who does Bogey a fav,” says Bogey pirouetting, ending up facing the bar. Bogey does another pirouette and faces the restrooms. Bogey’s third attempt at a pirouette works and he’s facing the door. Bogey sachets out, being cool, like he mastered the pirouette and exit.

Roxie taps Legos’s forearm, “What’s the Tuna got against Lena sending Bogey back to her?”

Legos says, “The Tuna and Lena are longtime friends. I’m thinking the Tuna is trying to get Lena and Bogey together. Josie Graziano has rep. She probably already forgot about Bogey and is looking for a sugar daddy. Bogey doesn’t have money going for him. Imagine living with someone talking in third person?”

Roxie says, “It’s got to be hell.”

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