Vinnie’s Mom Pleads, “What’s happening to me? Have I lost it?”

22 

Vinnie’s mom smiles at Vinnie’s dad’s reassurance. Vinnie’s mom says, “I’m ready for the question Vinnie. You understand, I know my dad better than anyone here, so I have an unfair advantage over Rupert and Dexter.”

Vinnie glances over at a dozing Dexter. He looks at the ever smiling, ever black glass eyes wide open alert Rupert, “Rupert and Dexter got this, Mom. Rupert says you’re going down.”

“We’ll see about that, Vinnie. Tell Rupert and Dexter, ‘Game on.'”

Vinnie’s dad touches Vinnie’s mom’s shoulder, “Don’t push this one too hard, Dear. You know I love your dad, but he’s only human.”

Vinnie’s mom turns toward Vinnie’s dad, “What’s that supposed to mean?”

Vinnie’s dad puts his hands up in mock surrender, “All I meant to say was you and I love everything about your dad. Sometimes other people see things a little different from how we see them.”

Vinnie’s mom shoots a couple of eye darts toward Vinnie’s dad and turns back to Vinnie. What’s the question, Vinnie? If I get it right, do Dad and I win and the game’s over?”

“Let me talk with the rules committee, Mom,” says Vinnie. Vinnie takes hold of Rupert, scoots off his chair and squats down on the floor next to Dexter. Vinnie sets Rupert next to him facing Dexter.

Vinnie’s mom whispers to Vinnie’s dad, “I can’t see him. What’s he doing?”

“He’s talking to the rules committee. Evidently, the chair of the committee is a stuffed grizzly bear and the associate chair is an overweight beagle who can’t say no to food.”

Vinnie’s mom says, “What are they saying to him?”

“Get a grip, Dear,” says Vinnie’s dad to Vinnie’s mom.

“What’s happening to me? Have I lost it? Why do I think a stuffed grizzly bear and an overweight beagle can make up game rules,” says Vinnie’s mom looking at Vinnie’s dad, her eyes pleading for understanding.

Before Vinnie’s dad responds, Vinnie is back on his seat. Rupert is sitting against the lunch box, and Dexter is in a semi-conscious state alert for the potential of late morning snack or full course meal.

Vinnie says, “I talked the rules committee, Mom. They said sure, it’s winner take all but don’t feel bad when you lose.” 

“We’ll see, Vincent,” says Vinnie’s mom.

“Mom, the question has a couple of parts. You have to answer all the parts, but it doesn’t matter the order.”

“Okay, what are the questions, Vinnie? Please. I really need a break,” says Vinnie’s mom.

Vinnie says, “When Gramps visits in the summer and sits on the deck swing with me, lots of times he kind of lifts one leg and farts. Then he says, “Did you hear Dexter fart? First part, Mom, why does Gramps fart in front of me and then laugh like it’s funny? The second part, why does he blame Dexter when Dexter didn’t fart? And the third part, does Gramps have to go to confession with Father Mike and confess he wrongly blamed Dexter?”

Vinnie’s mom turns four shade of red, her eyes squint nearly shut, and she starts rubbing her temples.

“Well, Mom? You have ten seconds to start answering, 10 … 9 … 8 … 7 …”

“Alright, alright. It was Dexter, not Gramps who farted. That’s why he laughed. Since he was telling the truth, he has nothing to confess. I win, game over.”

“Mom? Wrong. Wrong. And, wrong.”

“How do you know I’m wrong?” asks Vinnie’s mom.

“Simple, Mom. Gramps lifted his leg and the sound of a drum rolled out from underneath him. And, Dexter’s …”

“Let’s not discuss this any more. The whole question is disgusting,” says Vinnie’s mom.

“I agree, Mom. And, it smells bad, too,” says Vinnie.

Vinnie’s dad starts laughing. “That’s pretty good, Vinnie. Did you think of that yourself?”

“No. I was telling Larry about it and his mom overheard us and she said it.”

“I don’t dare show my face ever again outside this house,” says Vinnie’s mom. 

“Game’s over, Mom. I’m bored. Thanks for playing,” says Vinnie.

Fifteen minutes later, Vinnie’s mom quietly opens the door to Vinnie’s room. She sees him lying on his bed, asleep, his arm around Rupert. Dexter is lying on the floor next to Vinnie’s bed. Vinnie’s mom quietly walks into the kitchen and motions Vinnie’s dad to follow her. They both peer in on him. Vinnie’s mom says, “It looks like we wore him out. He looks so peaceful and innocent while he’s asleep.”

“I wish we could bottle it and give it to him to drink,” says Vinnie’s dad sliding his arm around Vinnie’s mom’s waist.

“I’ll make some coffee and we’ll have a few free moments before I wake him for lunch,” says Vinnie’s mom. She closes the door. Vinnie’s mom and dad head toward the kitchen.

Vinnie peeks over his shoulder, “They’re finally gone, Rupert. Let’s play Mind Craft. Don’t worry, Dexter. Here’s a tofu hot dog for you.”

A NEW STORY BEGINS IN A FEW WEEKS (I’M RIGHT BRAINED SO I CAN’T GIVE A DEFINITE DAY – IT’S MY EXCUSE FOR MANY THINGS. LOL)

Advertisements

Please Check on Vinnie

21

Vinnie’s dad continues to massage Vinnie’s mom’s shoulders. An eery quiet comes from the kitchen, then a beep and another beep, then the sound of the microwave. “Vinnie’s making popcorn.”

“Vinnie’s mom twists her head and looks up at Vinnie’s dad, “Go check on him. I don’t trust him.”

Vinnie’s dad gives a small chuckle, “What could go wrong with making a bag of microwave popcorn. You worry too much.”

The sound of the popcorn popping grows louder, faster, and with the furious beat of an angry rapper. “I don’t like the sound of the popcorn in the microwave, Dear. Please check on Vinnie.”

Vinnie’s dad says, “Listen to the popping, it’s almost …”

An explosion of sorts, the slamming of the microwave door against the cabinets, and Vinnie’s voice, “Wow! This is great. There’s popcorn everywhere. You should see this dad.”

Vinnie’s mom is out of the chair like a rocket taking off for the International Space Station. Vinnie’s dad follows a safe distance behind prepared for a series of ‘I told you so.’

Vinnie’s mom stands in the entryway into the kitchen, arms akimbo, “My God, what happen? There’s popcorn everywhere. What happened to the microwave? Popcorn and popcorn bags are sticking to the sides and tops. What did you do, Vincent.” 

“Nothing, Mom. Honest. I asked Rupert if I could pop three bags of popcorn together on high and he thought it was a good idea. He really likes the game and wanted to get back to play it.”

“You asked Rupert what you should do?” says Vinnie’s Mom.

“Yes, Mom. You always told me when I’m not sure of something, to ask someone smarter than me. Rupert is the smartest person I know.”

Vinnie’s mom turns to Vinnie’s dad, “Don’t say anything. Hold me. I need to get centered. 

Vinnie’s dad holds Vinnie’s mom in his arms. Vinnie’s mom lays her head on Vinnie’s dad’s shoulder and whispers, “Does this make Rupert smarter than you and me?”

Vinnie’s dad isn’t sure what to say. Instead, he strokes Vinnie’s mom’s hair and says, “You have to admit, life around here isn’t boring.” 

Vinnie calls over, “Mom, no need to worry about clean up, Dexter’s almost done. Can I lift him up and stick his head inside the microwave?”

Vinnie’s mom breaks loose from Vinnie’s dad. She looks at Vinnie’s dad and says, “I told you so. No, Vincent, don’t stick Dexter’s head in the microwave.”

“What did you tell, Dad, Mom? Did he remember? I bet he wasn’t listening to you. Is this true, Dad?”

“Let me help Dexter clean up,” says Vinnie’s dad. Vinnie’s mom starts laughing.

Ten minutes later the family is sitting at the kitchen table. Rupert is sitting on the table, his back braced against the lunchbox. Dexter is lying on the floor sleeping off three bags of popcorn.

Vinnie’s mom says, “Vincent, I am really trying to be patient with you. My patience meter is running on empty. I want this game to end quickly so I can soak in the tub undisturbed by any male in the house.”

Vinnie smiles, “Awe, Mom. Why don’t you take your bath now. We can play when you finish.”

“No, we’ll finish it now.”

Vinnie’s dad sits stoically staring at a photo of the three of them at Six Flags. His first thought was the happy time they all had, then he remembered what Vinnie did on the water slide. He decided not to bring it up.

Vinnie’s says, “Since you didn’t answer the question about Gramma’s teeth, I’ll ask you one about Grampa since he has most of his teeth. Is it okay?”

Vinnie’s Mom says, “Promise it’s not about Grampa’s teeth.”

“I promise, Mom,” says Vinnie.

Vinnie’s dad interrupts, “Perhaps we should narrow his choices down a bit more, Dear.”

Vinnie’s mom looks at Vinnie’s dad and says, “What could he ask that would embarrass me?”

Vinnie’s dad can think of seventy-three things, but smiles and nods.

Vinnie says, “Mom, when Gramma and Grampa visit us and have dinner with us, Grampa sits on sofa and wants me to sit next to him. I don’t want to sit next to him and Dexter doesn’t like lying on the floor near him. And, Rupert doesn’t want to sit on the sofa with him. Why can’t Dad sit next to him and me and Dexter and Rupert play in my room until dinner?”

“That’s terrible, Vincent. You love, Grampa, right?” asks Vinnie’s mom.

“Sure, Mom. I love Grampa. That’s not the reason I don’t want to sit with him.”

“Well, Vincent. What is the reason you don’t want to sit next to Grampa? says Vinnie’s mom.

“I wouldn’t go there, Dear,” says Vinnie’s dad.

“Where, Dad?” says Vinnie.

“Yes, where?” says Vinnie’s mom.”

Vinnie’s dad glances at Vinnie. He says, “Vinnie, I think Dexter has to go outside after all the popcorn. Do you mind taking him into the backyard? We’ll be ready to play when you come back. Here’s a dollar if you do it without saying a word.”

Vinnie grabs the dollar and head toward the kitchen, Dexter follows believing he’s getting more food.

Vinnie’s mom says, “That was so wrong to reward him to do what he’s supposed to do.”

“I needed to get Vinnie off the game before he asked you the question,” says Vinnie’s dad.

“Dad is the most gentle soul. Vinnie loves him. They’re best buds when he visits. What question could he ask that might bother me?” asks Vinnie’s mom.

Vinnie’s dad thinks about it for a moment. He weighs the pros and cons of answering this question forthrightly and honestly. Then he says, “I can’t think of a single question Vinnie could ask that will bother you.”

COME BY TOMORROW FOR THE CONCLUSION – ENJOY

Vinnie Returns Monday Testing His Mom’s Limits

Vinnie can’t help himself, he’s an 8-year old boy with a vivid imagination. He returns on Monday.

Vinnie Helps His Mom Out

7

Vinnie sticks Rupert’s hand into his lunch box. He moves Rupert’s hand around, first this way and then that way. “Pick out an easy one for Mom, Rupert. She’s in last place. I always thought boys are smarter than girls.”

Vinnie’s mom puts two fingers to her lips and lets go with a shrill whistle, “Hold on, Buster. Boys are not smarter than girls.”

“No need to get upset, Mom. I’m trying to help you out,” says Vinnie.

“I don’t want an easy question. I want the hardest question you have in the lunch box. I’ll prove girls are just as smart as boys.”

“That’s the spirit, Mom. Already, my game is more exciting than Clue, don’tcha think?” asked Vinnie.

“Vinnie’s dad glances at Vinnie’s mom, “Vinnie’s makes a point. Vinnie, I have a question about the game.”

“Sure, Dad. If I can’t answer it, either Rupert or Dexter can answer it. They helped me with the questions,” says Vinnie.

“When does the game end?” asks Vinnie’s dad.

“End? It doesn’t ever end. That’s what makes my game great, Dad. It never ends so there is no official loser. Problem is there is no official winner. Rupert is still working on the last part.”

Vinnie’s mom interrupts, “Vinnie, this doesn’t make sense. A game has to end. All games have winners and losers. Let’s play to ten points. The first person to get ten points is the winner. I think we can all agree to that.”

Vinnie shakes his head, “Mom, you’re thinking like an adult. You have to start thinking like a kid. If kids ruled the world we wouldn’t have wars or bad stuff going on. All that stuff comes from adults.”

“That’s pretty good, Vinnie,” says Vinnie’s dad.

“Quit taking Vincent’s side,” says Vinnie’s mom.

“I wasn’t taking Vinnie’s side. You have to admit he’s got a point, Dear,” says Vinnie’s dad.

Vinnie’s mom’s face turns a tad red, she turns to face Vinnie’s dad. She says, “I’ll grant you, Vinnie has a point. But who has been in charge? It’s boys who grew up to be men. I’d like to see woman rule the world for a change.”

Vinnie becomes bored with the conversation and slips away from the table and heads to the refrigerator. While he is away, Rupert keeps an eye on the players. Dexter follows Vinnie to the refrigerator. Vinnie opens the refrigerator door and stands in front of the open refrigerator staring at all the choices. There’s nothing he sees that he likes. If Dexter were taking a multiple choice test, he’d circle all the above. Vinnie removes a plate with two pieces of left over grilled chicken breast and tips the plate letting the chicken drop on the floor. He puts the empty plate back in the refrigerator. Closes the door and heads back to the table. Dexter stays behind eating his gourmet snack. 

Vinnie climbs into his chair, “Where were we when the game got interrupted?”

Vinnie’s dad is happy to get out of a conservation where he was losing ground faster than a bob sled going downhill. “Uh, I’ll think about what you said, Dear. You make a good point. Vinnie, I asked you how we would know when the game ends.”

“Right, Dad. I told you it never ends. You just had a memory fail, Dad. Never mind, I’ll pick a hard question for Mom. If it’s too hard, Mom, I’ll put it back and keep pulling one out until you think you can answer it,” says Vinnie giving his mom his best helpful look. 

Vinnie’s mom rolls her eyes and watches Vinnie stick his hand in his lunch box and squirrel it around. Vinnie pulls out a folded piece of paper. He carefully unfolds it and shows it to Rupert, “Do you think this is a good question for Mom, Rupert?”

Vinnie shakes Rupert so Rupert’s head moves. Vinnie’s mom silently prays, “Lord, we’d try for another child, but what if she was a he and he was a Vinnie clone? It is too much for any human to bear.”

27 ~ Let’s Play Jeopardy

27 ~ Final Chapter

“Let’s play Jeopardy, Dill. You’ll be the contestant on the quiz show and I’ll play the host, Alex Trebek.”

“Hold on, Gills. You always get all the good parts. Why can’t I play Alex Trebek?” argued Pickle.

Gillis, ever sensitive to his partner’s fragile ego, said, “You can play Pat Sajak when we play Wheel of Fortune. Wendy will play Vanna White. And, I’ll play the contestant who wins Vanna.”

Pickle closed his eyes and tried to figure it out. He opened them after a minute, “Pat Sajak and me are about the same size. It’s a deal if you promise to let me spin the wheel.”

“Promise,” said Gillis. Gillis closed his eyes, vowed never to change careers and become a first grade teacher. He took a deep breath and channeled Alex Trebek, host of Jeopardy, into his persona. When he was ready, he opened his eyes and said, “Detective Dill, it’s your turn to play Jeopardy, which category do you choose?”

Pickle slid right into his role, “I’ll take cagey criminals for $400.”

Gillis picked up an imaginary card and read imaginary printing from it, “Fandango.”

Pickle pressed an imaginary buzzer and said, “What cagey criminal convicted of senior scooter theft escaped from the state prison and vowed to open a restaurant?” 

“That’s right,” said Gillis.

“I’ll take Famous Children for $200,” said Pickle.

Gillis wondered when Pickle crossed the line into fantasy world and got lost trying to find his way back. Gillis played along. He picked up another imaginary card and read imaginary printing from it, “Do Re, Leon, and Buttercup.”

Pickle blurted out the answer, “What are the names of Fandango’s sons?”

“Right for $200. Time is about up, Dill. You have time for one last question,” said Gillis believing he crossed the line into fantasyland.

“I’ll take careers for $1000,’ shouted an excited Pickle.

From a table next to them, “They’re filming Jeopardy. There’s Alex Trebek. I’ve had a secret crush on him for forty years said an eighty-seven year old woman.

“I saw him first,” said her older sister.

“You can’t have him, he’s mine,” said the younger sister.

Nausea swept over Gillis as the two sisters started swinging their handbags at each other fighting to see who could have him for desert. He swiftly picked up an imaginary card and read the imaginary words, “The world renowned monkey entrails chef.”

Pickle thought for a moment, gave a smile and said, “Who is Fandango?”

Gillis said, “You are correct for $1000.”

The Golden Wok exploded into applause. Pickle stood up and took a bow. 

Gillis said, “That’s all for now, folks. We’ll be filming live same time next week.”

“That was fun, Gills. What does it all mean?” asked Pickle.

“The real murderer is Fandango, the father of Do Re, Leon, and Buttercup. His sons are co-conspirators. Fandango is the brains behind the Golden Wok,” said Gillis. 

Gillis pulled the gun out of his shoulder holster. He tapped Pickle with the barrel, “All four will be coming through the kitchen door with serrated knives to do to us what they did to the monkeys.” 

“Will we end up on the barbecue?” asked Pickle.

“Probably,” said Gillis.

“How do you figure … Here they come,” shouted Pickle pulling the gun out of his shoulder holster and randomly firing four rounds. One round shattered a large chandelier over the buffet spewing small pieces of crystalized glass over the fried chicken. A second round shattered the large aquarium sending the dead carp over the floor along with one-hundred gallons of water. A third round passed through two urine sacks pouring urine out over the dead carp. The fourth round ricocheted off a large brass bell, traveling across the dining room and entering a piece of sautéed ground squirrel.

A near sighted, hard of hearing senior, stabbed the piece of squirrel, dipped it into duck sauce, and put it in his mouth. Five seconds later, “Son of a bicks. I book my toot on the meat.”

Fandango tucked his serrated knife behind his back and rushed to the senior, “Don’t worry about a thing, sir. Here’s a coupon for a free buffet next week.”

“Thanx,” sputtered the senior.

Moments later Gillis and Pickle handcuffed Fandango, Do Re, Leon, and Butter and led them out of the Golden Wok. The seniors rushed to the buffet to grab all the food left on the buffet bar before the health department arrived and shut the Golden Wok. 

Two hours later, Gillis and Pickle sat in Courageous’ office. Courageous sat behind his desk, his phone to ear. “Yes, mayor. I will, mayor. Consider it done, mayor. They’re right here in front of me. I’ll tell them, mayor. You want to see them this afternoon? Certainly. The police commissioner will be there? Thank you, mayor.”

Courageous set the phone down and looked at Gillis and Pickle, “That was the mayor.”

“Figured as much Cap,” said Gillis.

“He sends his congratulations. Folsom Sampson forgives all the damage you caused. You nailed the monkey murderers. The mayor and commissioner want you at the mayor’s office this afternoon, you’ll both receive commendations. How’d you figure it out?”

“Easy as baking bread on Tuesday, Cap. Almost as easy as taking a crap first thing in the morning, know what I mean? About as easy as cleaning earwax from your ears with your baby finger,” said Pickle working the wax with the pinky on this left hand.

Gillis burped, whacked his chest with his fist, “Had a taco on the way over from No Mas Taco. Here’s the thing, Cap. The whole case smelled like a bad enchilada from the start. Fandango made his mistake by trying the old switch and dip ruse on us. You know, the bob and weave, the old soft shoe, the I can’t dance routine. None of them worked. When Leon pushed pizza on us I smelled something fishy and it wasn’t carp.”

“What was it?” asked Courageous.

“I’ll tell you it wasn’t catfish or tuna. It was barbecued monkey. Because my pay is so low in the department, I moonlight for the newspaper as their secret diner. I’ve sampled their barbecued monkey before and gave them five stars.”

“They’ve been serving barbecued monkey?” asked Courageous reaching for angina pills. The animal rights organizations will be all over us if this gets out.”

 “For months, Cap. The problem was, the Feds cut off the supply. The seniors refused to eat barbecued dog or cat. They developed an unusual craving for monkey entrails. The only option left to Fandango and his sons was to go after domesticated monkeys.”

“Domesticated?” asked Courageous wiping sweat off his brow with his handkerchief. 

“Big difference in taste between wild and domesticated monkey. Once you go wild, you never go back. It’s what’s going to happen to Wendy after she tries me on for size. No offense intended, Cap. Your son, Pat didn’t have the goods to sexually satisfy the woman. Wendy has a libido that is in overdrive and on overtime.”

“Wendy and Pat broke up? This is first I’ve heard of it. It’ll kill Pat’s mother.”

“You know your wife is the mayor’s lover, right? This is common knowledge, Cap. Hell, she’s had half the department. Not Dill and me. She offered herself to me, but I told her I needed your permission first.”

“I woulda had her at the Christmas party, but your guest room was being used. Clara was doing the rodeo with Santiago if you know what I mean,” said Pickle.

Captain Courageous slumped to his desk. He began beating the sides of head with his fists. Pickle interjected, “Cap, you ought to be checked by medics for head lice Cap. Chalk up a W for Gillis and Pickle,” said Gillis fist bumping Pickle.

Courageous lifted his head slightly and stared blankly at Gillis and Pickle, the only thought running through his mind, “Life’s not fair. It’s just not fair. 

25 ~Pickle Discovers a Clue to the Case in the Men’s Restroom

25

Gillis played with sugar packets arranging and rearranging them. Pickle test tasted packets of soy sauce, duck sauce, barbecue sauce, and spicy mustard. Pickle was on his third round of packets and began slurping the entire packet. Gillis said, “You’re hungry.”

“I didn’t say anything, Gills. How’d you know?”

“Wild guess. Let’s nose around, Dill. We’ll walk up to the buffet bar. Remember what Do Re said about the food. Look but don’t touch. You remember what we’re looking for?”

Pickle’s eyes sparkled. He was back in third grade and he knew the answer, “I sure do, Gills. I looking for senior trying to sneak extra food off the buffet to take home.”

Gillis, always sensitive to Pickle’s desire to be right, said, “Right on target, Dill. While you’re at it, if you notice anyone with only one cufflink, let me know. Take your time at the buffet bar. We’ll talk after Do Re brings us our pizzas.”

Pickle puffed up more brightly than a peacock. “I’m on it. Do you mind if I go to the restroom first?”

Gillis shrugged, “I’ll wait.” He continued rearranging sugar and sugar substitute packets.

Five minutes later Pickle returned. He slid into his chair. He bent toward Gillis and whispered, “I found some unexpected information that may help us with this case.”

Gillis nodded and signaled Pickle to continue.

Pickle reached into his pants pocket and pulled out a slip of paper. He read it, “Call Sara at 555-6767 if you want a good time.”

“How’s this going to help us?” asked Gillis.

“Sara might have seen something. Do you mind if I call her and question her alone tonight?”

“Go for it. Let me know if you had a good time. Let’s head to the buffet bar,” said Gillis.

Gillis and Pickle stood in the buffet line behind fifteen seniors. Eight of the seniors were  pushing walkers. Each of the eight walkers had a built in tray device. The seniors with walkers placed two large plates on their tray device. The remaining seven seniors had baby pouches strapped to their chests and carried a single plate. 

“Question, Gills.”

“What is it, Dill?”

“Are the seniors afraid the Golden Wok is going to run out of food? Why are they stuffing food into the baby pouches? Why do they need two plates? Watch out, one of the seniors is trying to pull his walker out of line and take a cut near the front of the line. Another senior with a walker is swearing at him. They’re swinging their walkers at each other. Should we step in?”

“Ignore it, Dill. When seniors fight over food, the early bird special, coupons, you need backup. We’re not wearing our Kevlar vests. If they take hostages, we’ll call in the SWAT team. You see that? Beautiful move, He faked swinging his walker, and squirted the guy in face with his urine sack.”

The guy who got squirted, “I’m going to sue. I just had my cataracts removed.”

The guy who did the squirting, “You sue and I’ll ban you from playing bingo.”

“Truce.”

“Truce.”

Gillis said, “I saw something on Unsolved Mysterious on cable about seniors at buffets, Dill. The world’s greatest scientists can’t figure it out. The scientists point out for every ten seniors who head to buffets only seven survive.”

“They got a seven in ten chance, Gills. Those are good odds given the price. Five ninety-nine for all you can eat. I heard a senior say he eats enough so he doesn’t have to eat for two days.”

Twenty minutes later Gillis and Pickle made it through the buffet and back to their table. Two pizzas boxes were on the table. “See anything unusual, Dill?”

 I saw a senior stuffing her handbag with chicken wings. Then she started packing food in her cheeks like a squirrel as she went through the buffet.”

“That’s normal according to the scientists. Once you pass a certain age, all you think about is food, how to interfere in your kids lives, and what the neighbors are doing. I meant about our case,” said Gillis.

“Can’t say I did. How about you?” asked Pickle picking out a slice of greasy pepperoni pizza.

“Don’t eat the pizza,” said Gillis.

“Why?” asked Pickle holding a grease laden piece of pepperoni pizza inches from his mouth.

“I’ll tell you in a minute. Put the pizza down carefully and wipe your hands on your shirt. I think I solved the case,” said Gillis watching the grease drip off of Pickle’s slice and slide down his chin and dripping onto his shirt.

“Something bothering you, Gills? What are you thinking about? You buried your face in your hands. What am I missing Gills? Who’s the killer? What tipped you off?”

“Look at Me” Poem by Dr. Suess

Look at me!
Look at me!
Look at me NOW!
It is fun to have fun
But you have
to know how.

Theodor Seuss Geisel