Vinnie’s Returns August 1 & He’s Up to Something

Vinnie Returns on August 1st – He’s on summer recess and his poor mom doesn’t catch a break. LOL

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“I Demand A Recount,” says Vinnie’s Teacher

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Lunch time at Kennedy Elementary School. Doctor Cashman sits behind her desk. Mrs. Mavis Mavis, Lori Swift, the counselor, and Mark Doolittle, the assistant principal sit in a semi-circle in front of her desk. Doctor Cashman ordered sandwiches from Ponti’s Deli for the meeting.

Doctor Cashman says, “Mrs. Mavis, I can’t arbitrarily say Vinnie didn’t get elected fair and square.”

“You have to. He’ll destroy the school. He doesn’t deserve to be president. He’s the worse student in the school,” argues Mrs. Mavis.

Lori Swift says, “I know you and Vinnie don’t get along, Mavis. But he’s far from the worse student in school. He’s polite. His achievement scores are in the upper one percent.”

Mrs. Mavis huffs and puffs like the big bad wolf in the Little Red Riding Hood story and says, “Vincent has you fooled. Oh, he can be charming and sweet, but underneath he’s out to get us.”

“Mark Doolittle says, “It’s been a stressful year for you Mavis. Everything alright at home?”

Before Mrs. Mavis explodes at Mark Doolittle, Doctor Cashman steps in, “What was the final vote for President of the third grade when you count the ballots from the three third grade classrooms?”

Mrs. Mavis says, “Vincent barely won if you only count the legitimate ballots.”

Lori Swift jumps in, “I did the recount for all the grades and Vinnie had 67 votes, Tommy had no votes, and Megan had two votes. I think Tommy voted for her.”

Mrs. Mavis says, “That’s reason enough to make Megan 4th grade president because Tommy is a gentleman and he always raises his hand. Tommy would know who would make a good class president.”

“Mavis, 3rd grade is always difficult, even for the best teachers, like you. May I suggest switching to another grade next year. The computer will assign you a random class and one that does not have third graders,” says Doctor Cashman.

Mrs. Mavis puts her hand to her chin and ponders the suggestion. She says, “Change might be good. I don’t want to have that Vincent creature in my class next year.”

Mark Doolittle blurts, “There’s only a very slim to none chance that is going to happen. There is only a 6.67 chance of you having Vinnie in class again. Great odds.

“How do you do that, Mark?” asks Lori.

“I got an A in third grade in math,” says Mark proudly.

“Okay. I’ll do it. When will we know the class assignments and rosters, Mark?” asks Mrs. Mavis.

Mark Doolittle glances toward Dr. Cashman who nods. He says, “We’ll have it all worked out by the first of August.”

Doctor Cashman checks the time and says, “Mavis, after lunch I’m going to announce the results of the elections for grades four and five. Let’s all brace ourselves. We know how Vinnie will react. Let him get his energy out. Please don’t send him to the office for being excited.”

“Can I put him in timeout for the rest of the day?” asks Mrs. Mavis.

“Mavis, try to enjoy Vinnie’s excitement,” says Lori Swift

“If he’s ever elected president of the US, it’s your fault for not stopping it now. At least I won’t have to worry about him next year.”

Vinnie’s mom stands on the sidewalk in front of the Johnson’s house holding Rupert against her chest. Dexter is sniffing around on the Johnson’s grass. The three women are standing twenty feet in front of Vinnie’s mom all talking at the same time and occasionally turning back toward her.

Vinnie’s mom strokes Rupert’s head, “Rupert, what if Vinnie lost? He’ll be heartbroken.”

Vinnie’s mom puts Rupert between her two hands and stretches her arms with Rupert facing her. She uses her falsetto voice for Rupert, “No chance, Mom. Vinnie’s going to win.”

“What if Mrs. Mavis takes it away from him.”

Rupert says, “Tell Dad to threaten a lawsuit.”

“You are so smart, Rupert. Here comes the bus. Keep your finger’s crossed. I mean your paw crossed.”

“How about my front legs, Mom?”

The school bus flashes it’s orange lights and comes to a stop switching to flashing red lights. The bus door opens. Vinnie leaps out. He screams, “I won. I won. I won.”

The kids on the bus start chanting, “Vinnie! Vinnie! Vinnie!”

Vinnie turns back toward the bus and bows. He hollers, “Thanks, it’s gonna be the best fourth grade ever.”

The three mothers are shaking their heads. They involuntarily move closer to curb not know where Vinnie is going to run on his way up the street. 

Vinnie turns toward home, gets down in the set stance of an Olympic 100 meter champion and hollers, “On your mark, get set, go!” He races forward, arms flailing, fists pumping, heading straight toward the three women. Their amusement turns to terror as Vinnie heads on a collision course straight toward them. At the last second he veers to his left leaps over the small picket fence onto old Mrs. Crandall’s lawn. 

Mrs. Crandall is standing on her porch holding onto a walker for support. Vinnie yells, “Mrs. Crandall I won. I’m 4th grade president.”

“Atta boy, Vinnie. Watch out for my rose bush.”

Vinnie hurdles the rose bush with ease. He crosses the Johnson’s lawn and dives head first toward Dexter who patiently knows all this is coming. As long as the backpack makes it, Dexter is cool.

Vinnie’s outstretched arms wrap around Dexter’s neck. He says, “Safe at home, Dexter. Maybe next time.” He glance up, “Mom, I won.”

She says, “I heard.”

VINNIE RETURNS MONDAY, JULY 30

Vinnie Causes A Scene When He Gives His Speech

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Vinnie’s mom unconsciously closes her eyes and rubs her temples. A long moment later she opens her eyes, Vinnie’s not at the breakfast bar. The ding, ding on the microwave goes off. Vinnie’s mom turns around, “Vincent!”

“I thought you were doing one of the yoga things to get your center or something, Mom. I’m starving. Look, most of my hummus is gone,” says Vinnie taking a bean and cheese burrito out of the microwave. Dexter is standing next to Vinnie wondering if he is going to get more hummus or a second course.

Vinnie puts the bean and cheese burrito on a plate and carries it to the breakfast bar. He sits on his stool. Dexter lies on the floor next to Vinnie’s stool. Vinnie takes a bite of the burrito, “Mmmm, this is so good. It’s almost as good as your hummus, Mom.”

Vinnie’s mom glances at Dexter and thinks, I wish you could talk like Rupert, Dexter.

“What’s so funny, Mom?” asks Vinnie.

“Nothing. I thought of something, that’s all. Now, before you take another bite, tell me what happened or I will read the email.”

“Okay, Mom.” Vinnie takes a gulp of apple juice, swirls it in his mouth, swallows it, and clears his throat. He gets off his stool and steps back a pace. “It went like this, Mom. Mrs. Navis said, ‘Okay, Vincent, it’s your turn. I’m listening.’ I said, ‘Thank you, Mrs. Mavis.’ I stood up and asked Mrs. Mavis if Joey could stand near me because he is my campaign manager. Mrs. Navis said, ‘I suppose so, but no funny stuff.’ I walked to the front of the class. Joey stood next to me. I touched Joey on the shoulder and he said, “Put your hands together for Vinnie.” The class started clapping, then I said, ‘Who you gonna vote for?’ the whole class except for Tommy and Megan and Mrs. Mavis said, ‘Vinnie.’ Mrs. Mavis said, ‘That’s enough class. Joseph sit down. Vincent, give your speech why you should be elected student President of the 4th grade.’ I turned toward Mrs. Mavis and smiled and made a slight bow. The kids started laughing. I turned back toward the class and started my speech, Mom. That was about it. Can I finish my burrito and go to Joey’s house?”

Vinnie’s mom says, “Do you think I was born last weekend? I want to hear all of it.”

Vinnie says, “Do you want Rupert to rub your temples first?”

“I can rub my own temples, Vinnie. Now, start talking.”

“Okay. I began my speech this way, “You all know my name so I don’t have to introduce myself like the two teacher pets.”

“Oh, dear. What did Mrs. Mavis do?”

“I heard her take a deep breath but I talked before she could stop me. I said, if you elect me president I’m going to ask Doctor Cashman to make sure we get a good teacher in 4th grade.’ Mrs. Mavis said, ‘Vincent, that’s enough, sit down.’ Then she said to the class. Be responsible when you vote tomorrow. Choose someone who is not always in trouble and who will work with her teacher.’ I said, “That’s not fair Mrs. Mavis, you’re favoring Megan. Mrs. Mavis said, “Time out, Vincent.” I went to the timeout desk and had to stay there until 3rd grade lunch.”

“Is that all?” says Vinnie’s mom knowing there has to be more.

“Un, uh.”

“Let’s hear it, Vinnie.”

“When the 3rd grade class went to lunch. I waited until almost everybody was done eating and sitting at their tables until the end of lunch bell rang. All the teachers were sitting at their table at the back of the lunch room. Mrs. Neary, the teacher’s aide was with us in the cafeteria. She is very cool. When Mrs. Neary was at the far end of the lunch room, I climbed on my table and hollered, “I’m Vinnie and I want to be 4th Grade president. I’ll be the best president ever. I’ll ask Doctor Cashman to put ice cream on the lunch menu. I’ll ask her to make recess ten minutes longer.’ That’s all I got to say before Mrs. Mavis got to our table. I got off the table before she asked me because I know she was going to ask me to get off the table. That’s pretty smart, right, Mom?”

“What did Mrs. Mavis do?”

“Before she said anything, I said, “I’m on my way to the office, Mrs. Mavis.” I got up from my seat and started walking to the office and the whole 3rd grade started saying, Vinnie, Vinnie, Vinnie.” I think they would have kept on going, but Mrs. Mavis very meanly said, “Stop this instant. I mean stop.” I don’t know what else she said because I met Pete the custodian in the hallway and asked him if he needed help. He let me help him empty the trash cans in the boy’s restroom. I didn’t want to go straight to the office. Besides, Mrs. Mavis didn’t tell me to go straight to the office.”

Vinnie’s mom wonders where she should begin. There are so many starting places. She starts laughing. Vinnie says, “What are you laughing at, Mom?”

Vinnie’s mom knows she is laughing at her desire to ask Rupert where to begin. She says, “I’m picturing the scene. If it was on television, I think it might be funny. But it’s real, Vinnie. You can’t act like this, you’ll always get in trouble.”

Vinnie, innocently, says, “Didn’t you tell Dad during the last election, ‘Sometimes you got to cause trouble to make things change. I think I’m going to get elected tomorrow, Mom.”

“Oh, dear.”33

Vinnie Asks His Mom If She Really Wants to Know What Happened ~ LOL

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Vinnie’s mom closes her laptop. She does not want the temptation to check her emails. While she’s folding the laptop, Vinnie sticks his finger into the hummus and pulls out a large gob. He drops his right hand down by his side. The ever alert Dexter understands what Vinnie is doing. This scene often plays out each time Vinnie doesn’t like his food. Dexter, Vinnie’s accomplice, is all over Vinnie’s finger like flies over food at a family picnic. Within seconds Vinnie’s finger is cleaner than at any time during the day.

Vinnie’s mom turns her attention back to Vinnie. She notices the gob of missing hummus. “I am so happy you tried the hummus, Vinnie. It’s so good for you.”

Vinnie smiles at his mom. He says, “You’re a good cook, Mom. You always make healthy things to eat.”

“Thank you, Vinnie. Now tell about the rest of the day.”

“If I told you everything, you might be bored. I’ll tell you about the important parts. During the announcements, Doctor Cashman said school elections for next year are going to be tomorrow. Duh. Everybody knows that. When she was finished, I raised my hand. Mrs. Mavis, didn’t call on me. I thought she didn’t see me. So, I said, ‘Mrs. Mavis. Mrs. Mavis. Mrs. Mavis.'”

“How many times did you really say her name, Vinnie?”

“About a hundred before she finally called on me.”

“What did she say?”

“She said, “Vincent, go to time out. I know what you are going to ask. I am not telling you when we are having speeches, you’ll have to wait.”

“Did you ask, why?” asks Vinnie’s mom.

“Yah, Mom. How did you know? You didn’t read her email, did you?” asks an alarmed Vinnie. Vinnie adds, “I asked politely. I said, ‘Why, Mrs. Mavis? Why do I have to go to time out? Why won’t you tell us when we are going to give our speeches?”

“What did she say?” asks Vinnie’s mom.

“She said, “Vincent, go to the office.”

“Well, what happened next?” asks Vinnie’s mom.

“On the way to the office, I stopped and helped Pete the custodian empty the trashcan in the boy’s room. Then Pete and I walked to the office. He was giving me some advice.”

“What advice was Pete giving you?”

“Pete told me school is only a couple of weeks to go and I can do it standing on my head.”

“That’s good advice, Vinnie. What happened in the office?” 

“When I went in the office I saw Mrs. Nokowski, she said, ‘Hi Vinnie. Want a tootsie pop?’ I said yes, and I said, ‘Do I have to see Doctor Cashman?’ Mrs. Nokowski said, ‘You’re lucky, Vinnie. Doctor Cashman is at the superintendent’s office.’ I said, “Is Doctor Cashman in trouble. I bet she’s going to get fired.” Mrs. Nokowski laughed and said, “I don’t think so.’ She reached in her desk and pulled out a pass for me to go back to class. She already has a stack ready for me. It saves her time.”

“Vincent, how often are you sent to the office? Why hasn’t anyone told me about this?” says Vinnie’s mom.

“Nothing to worry about, Mom. Mrs. Nokowski says she thinks I should be paid because I spend so much time in the office. Honest, I really don’t do anything bad. I don’t hit anybody. I don’t throw things at anybody except on the bus when Joey and Larry and me sometimes have paper fights.”

Vinnie’s mom is trying to think of something to say. Before she can string three words together Vinnie says, “I went back to class and Mrs. Mavis was beginning the speeches. She looked at me and I smiled and gave her the pass from Mrs. Nokowski. She said, ‘Very well, Vincent. Sit down and be quiet. You’ll have your turn after Tommy and Megan. I went to my seat and Megan started hollering.”

“Why was Megan hollering?”

“She said I was mouthing the words, ‘Vote for me.'”

“Were you?”

“Yes. I sat down and Mrs. Mavis gave me one of her crow looks.”

“That’s not nice, Vincent. Be respectful.”

“I am, Mom. But when she looks over the edge of her glasses and pushes her head forward to stare at you she reminds me of an old crow. Rupert agrees with me.”

“Go on,” says Vinnie’s mom thinking the email must be really bad.

“Tommy said, “Elect me President of the 4th grade because I’m really, really smart and I will do smart things.” It was pathetic, Mom. Then Megan got up and said, “Elect me because I pay attention and never get in trouble like some other people in class. We don’t need a President who is always in the office.” I had to put my hand over my mouth to stop from getting in trouble.”

“Very good, Vinnie. What happened next.”

“You sure you want to hear it?”