Trust Fund Baby ~ The Conclusion

Chapter 50

My mind was riding the world’s tallest and fastest rollercoaster and I felt totally out of control. I moved from sexual obsession, to crush, to serious crush, to love without a commitment and to love with the deepest commitment one human being can make to another. It all happened in the space of one week. It happened without having sex. It happened without any prolonged passionate kissing. It happened in spite of coming from two worlds separated by a gulf wider than the distance from the Earth to the moon. 

I’m sitting in the passenger seat, J is driving her beat up, ready for being broken down and sold for parts, please somebody steal me Toyota. That’s not the worse part. The worse part was she is now driving it up the quarter mile driveway to the mansion. The scandal the Sanderstuff’s will have to endure when J parks in the area reserved for important guests, royalty, and other really filthy rich white folks is almost too much to comprehend.

J pulled the Toyota in between the Porsche and the Rolls Royce. She turned the engine off. The engine shut down with a cough, sputter, and wheezing noise. “Did your car just die?” I asked hoping the answer was yes.

“No, but it’s on life support and it has a living will. I can’t get rid of her until its really over. That might be years,” J said with a bit of smile.

“Years?”

“Yes, did I tell you Dante is a good mechanic? That’s where he got his ability to hot wire cars and steal them.”

How do I respond to that? J said it with a sense of pride in Dante’s mechanical ability. I gave it my best shot, “Seems like a good entry level position for driving getaway cars after a bank job.”

J turned to me, she placed her right palm against the side of my face singeing me with an electric burn. “M, oh my delightful M, I know you are trying your best to be nice to me. No one ever taught you how to be nice. I am going to love teaching you.”

“Un huh.” I couldn’t think of anything else to say. My brain was frozen. I was sexually very aroused. My eyes glazed over. 

J reached behind my seat and brought back a bottle of bottled water, the store brand. It was probably made out of recycled runoff water. She twisted the top off and handed it to me, “Drink this, it tastes like hell, but it will make the swelling in your pants go down.”

I almost choked on the water. It was good thing I swiftly turned my head toward the windshield because I coughed and splattered a mouthful of now twice recycled water all over the windshield. We both started laughing. When I calmed down, I said, “It’s showtime. Are you ready?”

J gave me a look that said it all. Mother and Father better be worried, because Ms J was coming to dinner and she didn’t plan to hold back.

We walked in through the front door, Nicole was in the foyer, she gave J the full once over, smiled at her and then turned to me, “You did good, you did real good. She got real ones like me. Your mother and father been waiting in the dining room for ten minutes. I think she maybe is going to have a heart attack, maybe a stroke, maybe she gonna crap in her panties. As for your Father, we can only hope he goes fast. The faster the better.” Nicole started laughing and walked away. I’m sure she can’t wait to tell Victor and call Oscar. 

We stood outside the large walnut double doors. I twisted the ornate black metal door nob. Mother said it was a gift from the Queen of England. I pulled to the door open and stepped in to announce J. Mother and Father rose to greet my fiancé. Before I could introduce J, she came through the door beaming and pulsating warmth, sexuality, and a willingness to take on any challenger in the room.

Mother was the first to speak, “Oh Martin, how delighted I am that you hired extra help for tonight and look how she dressed. She knows first impressions are important. I wish more people of her color felt the same way.” She looked at J, “You’re the first of your people we’ve allowed to come on the property, I’ll ring for Nicole, she’ll show you where your uniform is. In the future, you don’t have to dress so formal. I am Mother and this is Father. If you work out, we might try other of your people. Do you do nails or massages?” 

J took a step toward Mother, I grabbed hold of her hand and squeezed it as tight as filthy rich white guy who has a personal trainer at the filthy rich white guy’s workout spa can squeeze a hand. J gave me a don’t you dare stop me look. It was time to man up. I said, “Mother, Father let me introduce you to J, we plan to be married and we will decide when we want to have children and what we will name them.”

Gasp, coughing, Mother’s two boney female fists pounding on the table simultaneously causing Mother and Father’s wine glass to fall over, empty their contents on a table cloth given to Mother by the curator for antiquities at the Smithsonian. She brought herself under control, and said, “I’m sure she is a nice person and all that. I read recently where some people of her color are starting to do something besides drugs and killing and general mayhem. If you go through with the marriage, we’ll write you out of the will, that’s what we’ll do.”

Why did mother throw raw meat in front of a hungry tigress? What was she thinking? I let go of J’s hand and whispered, “Sic her girl.”

J flashed me a smile and sauntered over to Mother in the way a mountain lion stalks a wounded deer. Mother’s eyes grew wide. A look of sheer terror replaced her arrogant smirk, she called out, “Father, do something. This, this woman is terrifying me. Call security. Call the police. Call the FBI. Call the CIA. Call the whole damn military.”

Father said, “I will mother, but first I’ve got to find my angina medicine. Oh dear. My poor heart.”

J placed her palms face down on the table. She leaned over and put her nose inches from Mother’s nose. Mother couldn’t back up any further. The King Henry VIII dining room chairs refused to budge. J said in a tone as calm as a physician in an ER situation, “Listen up, you dick sucking filthy rich white trash whore I love your son. We are going to get married and if you or the lapdog you call Father know what’s good for you, you will keep out of our business. If you ever insult me or M again, I personally will take out what’s left of your public hairs out with an electric prod. Nod your head if you understand.” J took her right hand and grasped hold of Mother’s chin and nodded it up and down for her.

“Good, we agree. M, I’m not hungry. I think it’s time to leave.”

As soon as we were at the door, Mother shrieked, “I’ve just begun. This is not over, you’ll both end up in poverty and I will dance on your food stamps card.”

I held J back, “No need to say more, J.” I turned to Mother, “BTW, Mother, I have the original paperwork on my trust fund. It should have started ten years ago. Father, Pettibone, and you lied to me. There is no clause about working for five years. It was all rouse to keep me under your thumb. See you in court unless you want to make a generous settlement to avoid some very bad publicity that will include massages and happy ending and Father’s trips to resorts with his secretary.” 

I turned and escorted J out the door, Victor and Nicole stood in the hallway and applauded us as we walked by. When we got to the Toyota and sat inside, I said to J, “What are we going to do?”

J said, “We’ll talk about that in the morning. Tonight, I have plans for you.”

I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THIS STORY AS MUCH I DID WRITING IT. J AND M WILL BE BACK THIS FALL AND YOU’LL BE SURPRISED THE DIRECTION THEIR LIVES TAKE.

. 

Trust Fund Baby ~ 48 A Satire

Chapter 48

Louie asked a friend who called a friend to drive me home. I slept until the next morning and was awaken by Mother’s shrill cockatoo voice. “Martin, Martin, Martin if you don’t wake up I’ll come in and sing to you until you wake up.”

My head, my eyes, and my ears did not need her singing anything a cappella, let alone my nervous system. I made a mental note, if the situation were right, to ask Oscar if he ever heard Mother shrieking in delight and wanted his opinion on her voice quality. 

Mother spoke again, “Martin, hurry, you need a hearty breakfast for work.”

I called back, “I cancelled work today, Mother.”

She said, “Dear. You can’t cancel, not going to work may affect your trust fund. We want to keep that ten million in the family. Father and I can’t help what Mother Houston put in the trust fund terms.”

“Mother, I don’t care what the old bat put in the trust fund terms. I am not going in today. I need the entire day to get ready to pick up my fiancé and bring her here for dinner tonight so Father and you can meet her.”

“Well, Martin, why didn’t you say so. I will call Pettibone and tell him it’s okay.”

“What if he says it isn’t, Mother?”

“I will grab hold of his nuts and twist them off,” said Mother in a way that raised goosebumps on every available space of my skin. 

“Now, shower and get dressed. I want to hear more about your fiancé at breakfast. I’m going to toss Father’s Wall Street Journal in the trash. I’ll let him make the young bitch secretary he’s been sleeping with fetch him one.

Mother is in a truly rare foul mood. I said, “Mother, is today Oscar’s day off?”

“Yes, and I’m not happy about it. There are several things that need his personal attention.”

I now understood her bad temper. Perhaps I’ll mention a bit of abstinence is good for the body and the soul at breakfast. It’s going to be a tricky situation when I sit with them. Mother will grill me as if she’s been appointed as a special prosecutor by the President. Father will move his glasses down to the tip of his bulbous nose and stare at me over the glasses. He’ll occasionally search the room, move his shoes around under the table, tilt his plate and shake loose his linen napkin hoping the Wall Street Journal will shake loose. I wonder if the Wall Street Journal was his primary reader in grade school. 

Twenty-five minutes later the three of us were sitting at the dining table. We sat silently waiting for someone to make the entry into conversation. I thought of possible conversation starters, “Mother, have you considered using a dildo today?” or “Father, do you take your Viagra with your morning orange juice or do you wait until you go to your office?” I didn’t think these openers would lead to anything productive.

Fortunately, Mother broke the ice, “Martin, I’ve made two decisions for you. I know you’ll approve. You and J will have your room on the second floor next to our bedroom. We’ll all live as a happy family.”

“What’s the second decision, Mother?” I asked convinced now she was certifiable or I had no balls if I went along with her decision.

“I will make an appointment for you both to go to the fertility clinic to donate an egg and sperm so a surrogate mother can carry my heir. I’m sure J will be happy with this news, then she won’t have to deal with morning sickness, unsightly weight gain, water retention, stretch marks, and labor pains. Birthing is a messy experience and only suitable for those not in our class.”

We won’t make it past the salad tonight if Mother tosses these comments at J. Mother might not live to see sunrise. If J whacked her, we’d be on the lamb. I can see the headlines, FILTHY RICH WHITE BOY AND HIS BLACK VENUS ELUDE AUTHORITIES. 

I made a life’s decision at that moment. I do not want to live any longer in this house. I have to find something to do besides faking it as a shrink. If I keep on living like I am living I am going to end up like Mother or Father or worse, a combination of both of them. 

“Well, Martin, you agree with my decisions for your life, don’t you?”

“Frankly, Mother I could give a damn what you think.” I watched a rerun of Gone With the Wind last week. I wanted to use something like Clark Gable’s line to Scarlet O’Hara but hadn’t found the right opportunity until now.

 “Father, speak to our son. Did you hear what he said to me?”

Father looked up from his iPhone, “What did you say, Mother? I was texting my secretary and asking her to pick up a Wall Street Journal for me. Mine is missing today. I also asked her to have my medication ready for me. I have a stressful job at the office.”

Mother huffed and she puffed until her pasty white face turned red, “Martin, perhaps I was a bit too aggressive. It seems work is helping you to mature. Of course, I will let J and you pick out your room in the mansion and choose your own fertility clinic.”

“Thank you, Mother. You are the most thoughtful person I have ever known,” I said “NOT” in my mind. Oscar once told me never to get in a pissing contest with a skunk because you always lose. Now, I’m not calling Mother a skunk, that would be insulting. She is more like a vulture picking meat off dead carcasses. 

“Martin, Father and I were married in June. I think being a June bride sets a nice tone. I’ll order up good weather and we’ll have the reception on the south Lawn. I’ll hire the city symphony to play. Victor will supervise the cooking for the five hundred people we’ll invite. I assume J will have an equal number, maybe more with Dante coming out of hiding. It will be a celebration of the arts. Oh, Father, I am so excited.”

“Did you hide my Wall Street Journal?”

“I did.”

“Can I have it back, please,” said Father.

Mother said, “Father, you know I can’t have my massage today. I’ll give it back to you if you take your blue pill for breakfast and meet me in the bedroom in thirty minutes.”

“Mother, this is blackmail.”

“I hate that term. Can we use the term, ‘whitemail?”

“I’ve got to run,” I said. I really need to get away from this family.

 

Trust Fund Baby ~ 47 A Satire

Chapter 47

After I dropped J off at Loomis I drove out to the country club. The way I had it figured, Mother and Father are going to love J. I’ve got to assume the fertility rate among Black American women is a point in J’s favor. One thing puzzle’s me, the mean number of children that filthy rich people have is one point three. How do you have a point three child. I didn’t attend math classes so statistics is a puzzle I prefer to leave to the family accountant.

It was 2 p.m. when I got to the country club. The morning golfing crowd was gone. The hot filthy rich women who compete to take tennis lessons from the hot male and female tennis pros were all out on the courts getting hands on instruction. I sat alone at the bar, my only companion was Louie the bartender, a short guy with wavy black hair and a nose that could be used for a spear. 

Louie was wiping glasses with a white towel. It occurred to me this is what all bartenders do when they have nothing to do. Louis carried his towel and glass and walked toward me. “Off work early, Martin. Can I get you a drink? he asked.

“Louie, can you keep a secret. I mean a really, really big secret?” I asked.

“How big?” He asked.

“I took out my billfold and slid two one hundred dollars bills across the bar to him.

“Oh, you mean a small secret that is okay to get out as a rumor?” said Louie setting the glass down and slipping the two one-hundreds into his pocket.

“It’s much bigger, Louie. It’s like super top secret,” I said. The moment the phrasing past my lips I thought I sounded like a girl in junior high school telling one of her girlfriends about her latest crush.

Louie looked down the empty bar toward his glasses. “Man, I’m behind time wiping glasses. I take pride in my spotless, shiny wine, beer, and shot glasses.”

I still had my wallet in my hand. I opened it, and put one, two, three more one-hundreds on the table. “Can this buy ten minutes, Louie? I got to talk to someone and I’m not Catholic. I can’t go to confession because I don’t have anything to confess. I’m the salt of the earth according to Mother.”

Louie took hold of the three one hundred dollar bills faster than a Vegas casino dealer, deals blackjack. He said, “I haven’t seen much of your mother lately. Oscar keeping her busy? Or, is she keeping Oscar busy? I’m not quite sure how that one works. BTW, I’m Catholic, consider yourself in confession. My lips are sealed tighter than a …”

I interrupted Louie because every simile he uses is sexually explicit. I said, “Thanks Louie. I’m in love. I finally found the woman I want to be with the rest of my life. It’s driving me nuts. Today, she told me she loved me.”

“What’s the problem with that? She’s not pregnant? Already have kids? Is she married and needs a divorce? If so, my cousin Gino is a good divorce lawyer,” said Louie.

I shook my head no. “None of the above, Louie. The problem is enormous, gigantic, overwhelming.”

Louie held up a hand to stop me, “I get the picture, photo, selfie, whatever. It’s serious.”

“Thanks for the summary, Louie. Here’s the real problem, I’m introducing her to Mother and Father tomorrow night at dinner.”

Louie smiled, “You know I’m Italian. Italians work around the principle that it’s a good thing to have someone you’re going to marry meet the parents before the wedding. And, it’s always better if there is plenty of good food around. I’m not sure how it works among the filthy rich.”

I said, “The filthy rich think it’s a good idea too, but not for the same reasons your people might think it’s a good idea,” I said, edging closer to what I really wanted to say.

Louie placed both palms flat down on the bar and bent over a bit toward me, His nose was freaking me out. I think he sensed it and backed away. He said, “I see the problem. My nose bothers you. I like my nose. It’s the only one I got.” Louie started laughing. I like someone who likes their own humor. 

“It’s kind of like that Louie. The filthy rich want to make sure their filthy rich children are marrying someone who is pretty much the same. You know, filthy rich, went to filthy rich private universities, never a public university, go to a mainline Protestant church, and have the same skin tone give or take how they tan.”

Louie nodded his head, “Where does this woman who you want to marry fit into this description?”

I chewed on my lower lip for a second, contorted my jaw into a grotesque position and tried to speak but it came out sounding mfff, durr, flliss.

Louie took a step back from the bar, he bent over, and scanned the area under his bar. After a few seconds, he smiled, and he lifted out out bottle containing a dark caramel colored liquid. He set it on the bar and reached under and returned with a shot glass. He filled it so that the liquid hung precariously at the lip of the glass threatening to spill.

“Drink it in one gulp, kid. Don’t ask me what it is. Don’t ask me where I get it. Don’t ask me anything about it. It’s what Catholics do in confession when they got something really hard to confess.”

“They do? They get to have a shot while they’re in confession?” I asked.

Louie nodded.

“I’ve thought about converting, but Mother and Father made codicils in their will stating that any heir in perpetuity that converts to Catholicism is disinherited from all wealth.”

“Is this woman Catholic?” asked Louie.

“I don’t think so. I never asked her exactly what her belief preference is. I know ours is money.” 

“How long you been going with her?”

“We had our first date at lunch today. I’ve known her five days.”

“Kid, drink up. I’m beginning to see the problem,” said Louie as if her were a doctor giving me prescription.

I put my right hand around the shot glass and in one swift motion I brought the caramel colored liquid to my lips and tossed it down. “Yeowee. Oh, Mother. Oh, mama. Get me something, anything. I’m being consumed by a fire raging in my mouth my throat, my esophagus, my stomach. Oh my, oh my.”

Louie’s hand went under the bar again, seconds later he handed me a large pickle with skin that looked like alligator hide. He said, “Take a bite.”

I took a bite, it was sour, tasted of garlic and made my lips pucker. A moment after swallowing the foul tasting crunchy excuse for a former cucumber, I felt an easing from the deadening of every nerve cell in my body. My only concern was the destruction of the entire membrane of my stomach lining.

“Don’t think about it, Kid. It will go away. Now spill your guts, not literally, of course. The filthy rich bitches are almost finished with their tennis lessons. The ones that weren’t able to take a pro home will be here complaining about the one’s who scored.”

I said, “Here’s the deal, Louie. One, she comes from poor roots.”

“So do a lot of people. You can get past that one.”

“She went to a public university.”

“I think you can swing that one.”

“She is breathtakingly beautiful.”

“That’s in her favor.”

“She’s got the most delicious coffee with a hint of cream colored skin.”

“She’s black,” said Louie.

“Yes,” I said.

Louie poured me another shot. “Good luck, Kid. Your secret is safe with me. This one is too hot to handle. I woulda charged you a grand if I knew. But a deal is a deal.”

I threw the shot down, Took another bite of pickle and said, “Can I have another shot?”

“You’ll destroy your stomach,” said Louie as he walked down to the end of the bar where he started wiping glasses.

 

NEXT EPISODE ON MONDAY.

TRUST FUND BABY CONCLUDES NEXT WEEK, DON’T MISS A SINGLE EPISODE.

Trust Fund Baby ~ 46 A Satire

Chapter 46

After J and I broke our kiss and embrace neither of us said a word. We closed the office and walked to the elevator. The elevator stopped at the 2nd floor. Carlos stuck a leg in, followed by his head sporting a gold canine and five tooth smile. J slid over to the door opening and gave him a look that peeled the paneling off the sides of the elevator. Carlos stepped out before having his nose reshaped without the benefit of a plastic surgeon. When J turned to press the close door button, Carlos flipped me a thumb’s up.

We walked the two blocks to the corner of Loomis and Ocean Drive. Maxine’s Deli sat on the corner as it has for the past forty-three years. Zagats gives it a five star rating. 

I turned to J and said, “I’m getting the pastrami and sauerkraut rueben with Maxine’s special dressing on marble rye and I’m passing on the dill pickle. I’m going to have a bottle of the oxygen infused water.” I tossed in the last item to show J I was health conscious, 

J said, “I’ll have the same.” Her words were spoken with the same emotion one might have waiting for the light to change from red to green. 

I passed on the dill pickle. I didn’t want to take a chance on pickle or garlic breath. J did the same. It spoke volumes to me. We walked side by side to Ocean Drive. We crossed the street and picked up the pedestrian path that curled at the edge of the cliff overlooking the reserved beaches and ocean. The firs three benches were occupied, I pointed to the fourth, “Is this okay?”

J nodded. She didn’t speak.

We sat. I opened the bag, pulled our a rueben’s out, and unfolded the wrapping paper half way around the sandwich. When I handed it to J, I said, “Mustard packet?” Mustard packets are always a good way to break the tension. I think I’ll stop by Maxine’s on the way back and grab a handful for the next group session.  

J gave me a smile carried by a love beat. She said, “Yes, thank you.”

My heart was in rhythm with the ocean waves lapping against the shore. We ate silently staring out at the ocean. A cool ocean breeze, the sun at our backs, and my black Venus next me made this the most perfect moment of my life. I wanted it to last forever. 

J only ate a half of her sandwich and wrapped the rest up. She handed it to me. I placed it back in the bag. I was still hungry, but I wasn’t about to ruin the moment, I did the same with my sandwich. 

A brief moment later J said, “What happened? Explain it to me?”

I said the first three words that came to mind, “I love you.”

J turned turned toward me and took both my hands in hers, “M, I fell in love with you the moment I saw you. I fought it. You’re filthy rich. I grew up dirt poor. You’ve never worked for anything. I’ve had to struggle to get this far. I still owe over one-hundred thousand dollars in student loans for college. Your white. I’m black. You don’t have a serious bone in your body. I take life very seriously, it’s the only way I survived. Mama can’t stand you. I can only imagine how your mother and father will react when they see me. Do you understand all this?”

I stared into her eyes, I know she was speaking to me, I didn’t hear a word. I only wanted to look at her and hold her. 

“Well? Speak to me,” said J.

I said, “I love you.”

“You didn’t hear a word I said, did you?” said J.

I nodded my head and gave her a silly grin.

“Oh M, you are like a comfortable shirt I want to toss out, but I can’t get rid of it.”

I leaned toward J, closed my eyes, and kissed her. Some moments later when we broke our kiss, I said, “Seriously, will you marry me? I don’t have a ring with me. I’m serious. I’ve never been more serious in my life.” 

J let go of my hands and turned back and looked out toward the ocean seeking an answer. I turned toward the ocean and tried to use my highly limited mental powers to detect any good karma I had floating through the universe. This was one of the times I wished I watched the PBS special on developing good karma. Twice I tried to start a conversation, twice J shook her head. I sat and stared and waited. 

Fifteen minutes went by before J turned toward me. “M,” she said. “I know I love you. I don’t know if I want to marry you.”

I blurted, “Is it the sex. You want to discover if I’m great in bed. I have great reference.”

J started laughing the deep laugh I heard when we first met. I started laughing too until tears were running down my cheeks. J dabbed at them with Kleenex from her purse. 

Eventually a moment of calm occurred. J said, “M, I want you to introduce me to your parents. Not tonight. Tomorrow night at dinner at your house.”

“Not tonight? What are we going to do for the rest of the day?” I said hoping J was going to say make non stop passionate, unbridled love until we passed out from exhaustion.

Instead, she said, “I’m going back to the office and canceling group for tomorrow. I am going to the salon, then the spa, and you can pick me up at my apartment tomorrow for dinner. It’s 2342 Center Street, apartment 301.”

“What am going to do?” I asked.

“How old are you?” asked J.

“Thirty-three?” I said questioningly.

J said, “It’s time you figured it out if you really want to marry me.”

Trust Fund Baby ~ 45 A Satire

Chapter 45

J was giving me a look I can only compare to a Discovery Channel show about ravenous mountain lions. I tried to smile but my lips felt glued shut. J said, “I advise you not to interrupt me, make a smart ass remark about sleeping with you tonight, or ask me to run off and marry you within the next five days. We are going to have a talk after the group is finished. We are not going to a restaurant. We are not going to a bar. We are not going to a coffee shop to have this talk. Do you understand me?”  

I nodded. A sudden impulse I can only attribute to the goddess of love forced me to speak, “Does this mean you’ll contemplate marriage after five days?” 

J rolled her eyes.

I wasn’t through. I said, “I’ll take that as a yes. Next question, You didn’t eliminate deli’s and eating on a bench overlooking the ocean? I take the pout on your beautiful pouty, kissable red lips as a definite yes.”

“You are hopeless,” said J. 

“Well? Can we,” I said in a pleading tone.

“I will say yes to the deli and the ocean side bench. Not to marriage in six days.”

I started to speak and stopped when J shook her head and turned away from me. I was only going ask her if seven days would work.

As J was leaving my office, she turned and said, “Get ready for group. I hear them in the reception area.” J closed the door to my office and I imagined us making out on the bench overlooking the ocean after we finished our meal. 

From the receptionist area J gave a quick hell fire sermon, “You better find a bra or you’re going to find a knuckle sandwich.” 

I have to ask J, when we were sitting on the bench overlooking the ocean, if she is open to conflict resolution with Amber. I rolled my chair from behind my desk to the top of the semi circle formed by the group’s chairs. I hadn’t thought about the group since I last I saw them. I suppose I should prepare, but I don’t believe in preparing for group sessions. It’s my scholarly opinion based on hours of research at Foxy’s Sport’s Bar with my friends, that non preparation is the best preparation. When you non prepare, you then prepare for any circumstance. It’s counter intuitive. In non preparation for the group, which will be entering any moment, I took a nail clipper out of my pocket and began trimming my nails. I wasn’t quite finished when they marched in led by their drill sergeant, J.

I looked up from trimming my nails and was disappointed when I realized no one was missing. I went back to trimming my right thumbnail. Mother always said, trimmed nails on a man are a sign of good breeding. When I finished trimming my nails, I crossed my legs and removed my right foot Nike and sock. My intention was to trim my toenails. 

Amber spoke, “Would you like a pedicure, Doctor Sanderstfuff?”

From the outer office J’s voice bounced off the walls in my office, “Strike two.”

I thought this might be the perfect segue into dynamic group growth. I stretched my leg out so that the bottom of my right foot faced the group. I said, “What do you see?”

From the outer office, “Oh dear Lord save me from this insanity.”

I must be a great psychologist because all five members were waving their hands competing to be the first to speak. I called on the muffin top, Tito Perez, “Okay muffin top, what do you have to say. Sorry, I didn’t think to have jelly donuts for you.”

“Doctor Sanderstuff, I’m sensitive about my weight. I’m calorie challenged. It’s not politically correct to call me a muffin top.”

“I didn’t realize you were calorie challenged, Tito. Your records didn’t say anything about you being calorie challenged.”

“Thank you for being sensitive, Doctor Sanderstuff. What I see in your foot is an image of a croissant in your arch.”

“Very good, Tito. I’ll make sure we have some croissants at our next meeting for you.”

“Thanks, Doctor Sanderstuff.”

“What do you see, Jill?” Jill’s the Amber wannabe.

“I see toes I want to kiss …”

Jill didn’t get a chance to finish. She was interrupted by the one with super hearing in the outer office, “The only toes you’re going be licking will be mine and I will keep my shoe on. I hope you like the taste of leather and shoe polish.”

I was getting tired holding my leg up, I said, “Well that about wraps it up for today, we’ve had a big breakthrough. I’m glad you all could witness it.”

Prince spoke out without being called on, “I missed the breakthrough, Doctor Sanderstuff. I was thinking about something else. Can you tell me what it was?”

“That will teach you to pay attention, Prince. Things move so fast in group, it’s no telling where and when the next breakthrough will happen,” I said knowing I didn’t know what I was taking about. One of my drinking friends used the term breakthrough one night when he was talking about his relationship status. Or, was it breakup? I’m not sure. This was a good time to toss it out.

“Can I tell you want I was thinking about?” asked Prince.

“Well, hurry. I have an important luncheon date and I can’t be late,” I said.

“It’s only nine forty-five,” said The Sage.

“Did anyone ask you the time?” I said.

“No, I was just trying to help,” said The Sage.

I said, “You’re regressing. Trying to help is counter productive to helping. Wrap your peanut sized brain around that one.”

“That’s telling him,” Amber cooed. 

Prince raised his hand again, I said, “You’ve already taken up too much of the group’s time, Prince. I’ll let you speak, but you can’t speak at our next meeting.”

“Thank you, Doctor Sanderstuff. As everyone here knows, I was convicted of bigamy. I had three legal wives at the same time. For my part, I only lived with one at a time. I never bothered to divorce any of them.”

“So?” I asked.

“So, I want to propose to Jill. Jill will you marry me? We can share the same cell. It will be kind of cramped, but we’re both up for full release in six months.”

 “Tito?” asked Prince.

Before I could delve deeper into Prince’s proposal to be his fourth wife while he is still legally married to three other women, Amber blurted, “Doctor Sanderstuff, Doctor Sanderstuff.”

I turned toward Amber and saw she rolled up her top to the top of her bra. I said, “Nice navel ring.”

“Doctor Sanderstuff, I know you’re infatuated with Ms. J, but did you know her blonde hair is not hers? It’s either a wig or extensions.”

The door to my office burst open. J’s eye’s flashed like a pit bull’s eyes when it see raw meat. J snarled, “Strike three. All you loser but balloon breasts clear out.”

There was a mad stampede for the door. I hurried in front of Amber, I held my arms out, “J listen to reason. You don’t want to join Dante in prison, You want to honeymoon with me in Tahiti.”

J grabbed me by my arms. For a brief moment, I thought she was going to throw me out the window and Amber would soon follow. I had to do a pattern interrupt. This is another term I learned watching afternoon TV over cocktails at the club after a grueling round of golf. I took my arms and wrapped them around J and pulled her tight against my body and placed my lips on her lips and kissed her with the passion bottled within me since I first saw her. Five seconds, ten seconds and then I felt J slide into a state of relaxation and return the intensity of my kiss.

Neither one of us knew it at the moment, but Amber slid out unharmed to catch the bus ride back to the prison. 

Trust Fund Baby ~ 44 A Satire

Chapter 44

I left with a runner’s high when I left the elevator and walked into my office. I figured it was a runner’s high because I wasn’t drinking, I don’t do drugs, and Mother and Father didn’t keel over and leave every cent to me with no strings attached. I got my high from turning down Carlos’s attempts to make me into a bad boy to win J. I never felt this good before. This was a different feeling. I felt good when I bought something. It never lasted. I felt good when I went drinking with friends. I felt good when I hooked up with a woman I didn’t know and she took me home and we had acrobatic sex. This was a different kind of good.

“It feels good doing the right thing. You need to do it more often.”

“Don’t take the feeling away from me. Let me alone,” I begged my conscience.

“Far from it. Do it more frequently and you’ll get used to it. It’s a good feeling,” said my conscience. Then he added, “Caio.”

I walked into the office prouder than a peacock. Hell, I was good. There’s got to a special place in heaven for me when the time comes. No sir, I may be the best man that ever lived. I was thinking of my drinking buddies, I was better than all of them. I was better than Father. I was better than Oscar. I’m not comparing our sexual prowess. Oscar is a superstar if I’m to judge by Mother’s demand for services. I’m better than Victor. I’m better than Carlos. It’s moments like these that I consider converting to Catholicism. The Pope would declare me a saint before I died. I wonder if there ever was a Saint Artin or a Saint Double M? 

The office was dark, I turned on the light. Grandmother Houston cast me an approving look from her wall sized photo. 

I said, “Good morning, Grandmother Houston. I am your best and brightest grandchild.”

I didn’t hear anything from the craggily faced bitch, so I know she agreed. Albeit, I’m her only grandchild. That is besides the point. I opened the door to my inner sanctum, turned on the light and there was Mother staring at me from her wall sized photo. I wondered if she was having an orgasm at the moment. As soon as the thought struck, I looked back, hoping my conscience was too busy social networking to catch that thought. The next thought that rambled across my mind, was what would Mother do if Father suddenly had a heart attack. He’s at least twenty pounds overweight. I feel sorry for his secretary. If Father died, would Mother marry Oscar? Would I have to call Oscar Father? The series of confusing, disjointed thoughts ripped my good feeling away. I tried to get it back, but it was as slippery as an eel, whatever that is, but I read the metaphor somewhere. 

“Get centered. Get centered,” I told myself. I learned this phrase watching a Public Broadcasting special about meditation. I got bored after three minutes, surfed the cable channels before turning to Netflix to watch a standup comedy act. The way I understood it, to get centered you have to be in the center. This meditation stuff is not that complicated. 

I approximated the center of my office. The center, as close as I could calculate was the front edge of my mahogany desk. I walked around my desk, moved my chair out of the way, placed my two hands against the desk and pushed. I’ll skip the weights today, I’m hoping I didn’t get a hernia.  I climbed on top of the desk and stood at the front edge and faced the door. I didn’t care for the view. I turned and faced west looking out above the city and all those who serve the filthy rich. My gaze settled on the pristine sandy beaches exclusively reserved for the filthy rich and the blue ocean. 

I wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do while I stood in the center. I took my iPhone out of my pant’s pocket and checked my emails. I checked my messages in case J sexted to me to bring our relationship to whole new level. I felt a tinge of disappointed when I didn’t see a text from her. I took a selfie and posted it on Instagram and told my followers I was getting centered. 

I was counting my likes on my Instagram photo when I heard, “What are you doing on top of your desk?”

The words from J’s lips to my erotic zone, supercharged my libido. Until the charge ran its course I didn’t turn around. Think of something, anything, anything but J, I told myself. 

“Are you going to answer me, or are on drugs? I need to know. If you’re on drugs, two things will happen. One, I will call emergency assistance. And, two, when you get off drugs I will personally kick your ass and quit.”

J is a miracle worker. Whatever she did. Whatever she said, I was depleted of sexual energy or desire. At least momentarily. I turned and said, “I was getting centered. I was in the zone when you interrupted me.”

J put her hands on her hips, “You were centered? You didn’t look centered to me. You looked like you were scrolling through Instagram photos.”

I jumped down sticking the landing. I said, “Ten point zero, ten point zero, ten point zero. A perfect score from the three Olympic judges.”

J took a step closer to me. She grabbed hold of my right bicep, the one Carlos wanted to tattoo, and looked into my eyes. I wanted to kiss her. I thought she was going to kiss me to as she moved her face closer to mine. She stopped two inches away and smelled my breath. She let go and backed away, “You’re clean. You didn’t watch the whole PBS special did you?”

“The first three minutes. I got bored and switched to Netflix.”

Before J could speak the outer door opened and a female voice called, “Doctor Sanderstuff, I’m here a few minutes early for extra one on one.”

J turned around, “The only one on one you’re getting is my foot and your behind, Amber. Don’t come in here until the rest of the group arrives.”

“It may be a few minutes. I hurried ahead of them and when I reached the 21st floor, I pressed all the buttons.”

“She might really need my help, J. I’ll be okay alone with her. I won’t pay attention to her breasts.”

J cocked her head, and turned slightly sideways, “I know he can’t be trusted with her. I know. I know I have to keep an eye on him. I know he is emotionally immature.”

“Who are you talking to?” I asked.

“Your conscience.”

Trust Fund Baby ~ 41 A Satire

Chapter 41 

I didn’t wait for Nicole to wake me or Mother to chide me for staying bed and hiding from work. I hardly slept. Repeatedly, my mind reran the video of J’s hand taking hold of mine and our lips touching. I smelled my hand frequently during the night to catch a hint of her sweet fragrance. My sleep was ragged, but I didn’t care I’d discovered, for the first time in my life, someone more important to me than me, or Mother or Father. I drifted off around 2:30 after I heard Mother thanking Oscar for coming over so late to watch Hot Bahama Nights with her. As for Oscar, the man has the endurance of an Ethiopian marathon runner. 

I arrived early for breakfast. I asked Victor to get me started with coffee, fresh squeezed grapefruit juice, and a hearty bowl of oatmeal. I am determined to be a reformed eater. No more junk food. I want to be lean and mean for my chocolate truffle. 

I heard Mother and Father approaching the dining room. When they arrived, I heard a quick gasp from Mother. “Martin, are you feeling well? What’s wrong. You can tell Mother. Do you need Father to leave the room so we can have a Mother to son talk. It’s about sex, isn’t it. Do you catch an STD from the woman you’re dating? Is she pregnant? We’ve warned you about only having safe sex. I’ll call Pettibone and have him arrange a DNA test. He’ll fix it so another male’s DNA will replace yours and no one can prove it’s your child.”

I’m a psychologist. I’ll admit I don’t know what I’m doing and what I know about psychology can fit in one coffee cup. It’s enough to get by. One thing I’m sure of, Mother is nuts. She is one hundred percent certifiable. I’d like to help her in my role as a psychologist but I’ve never heard of a psychologist having his mother as a patient. I think Freud might have some fun with that one. I don’t know anything about Freud. I’m only name dropping here so anyone who is reading this will think I’m intelligent. Mother taught me to name drop. She said it gives instant cred. I think I’ll use this technique at group this morning. 

I turned my head slightly toward Mother, “Mother, I feel great. I do not have an STD. The woman I am planning to marry is not pregnant. We haven’t had sex yet.”

Mother and Father bypassed the stand behind your chair until prayers are said. They sat down. Father grabbed his Wall Street Journal waiting for him next to his place setting at the end of the table. On the other end, Mother, took her linen napkin and spread it across her lap. I noticed she’s wearing a light colored summer dress that dropped to mid café. Before I could ask Mother if she scheduled a massage for the morning, she said, “Oh no. Is she frigid? If she’s frigid you’ll have to carry on discrete affairs. It will be the only way to maintain your sanity. You’ll also have to deposit your sperm in a sperm bank. I’ll help you pick out the perfect egg for your sperm.”

Mother is talking about me retaining my sanity? No further proof needed. I wonder if Pettibone will get me a power of attorney over her. I glanced at Father. He was reading the Wall Street Journal the way I used to ready Playboy. He wasn’t listening. I was so sure he wasn’t listening I said to Mother, “Mother, does Father have erectile dysfunction?”

Mother’s pale pallor flushed pink. I’ve never seen her embarrassed. She leaned toward me and whispered, “Don’t say it so loud. He’s not proud of it.”

“Isn’t he doing his secretary?” I asked.

“Martin, where are you getting this information?”

“Rumors I pick up at the club, Mother,” I lied.

Mother said, “I’ve heard those rumors and I say, good for Father. I hear he paid for breast implants for her.”

Okay, this was information overload. I don’t know what Oscar and she did last night, but her dendrites were misfiring. I needed to change the subject, “Mother. I think I want Victor to learn how to cook grits and fried pickles.”

“Grits? Grits? Fried pickles? Surely you misspoke. The filthy rich don’t eat grits. We don’t eat hominy. We don’t eat okra. We don’t eat green beans cooked in bacon fat. Have you been reading William Faulkner?”

“I don’t read books, Mother. That’s old school. I listen to podcasts. I found an interesting one last night on interracial marriages and how to make them work.”

“Why would you waste your time with that, Martin. You know the Sanderstuffs don’t mix blood or human excretions with people of another race. Is this for your group? Is someone in the group involved in an interracial relationship?” asked Mother.

“I can honestly say, Mother. I’m working on an interracial dating issue right now. It’s true love, Mother. The problem the couple has is that parents on both sides don’t understand.”

Mother took a sip of her coffee, then rang a little bell next to her plate. Victor appeared within five seconds. Either the bell has magic properties or Victor has extraordinary hearing. Or, he’s afraid Mother will sack him from the easiest chef’s gig in the world.

“Yes, Mother,” said Victor. All the help call them Mother and Father. It’s a rule. They did this so I wouldn’t have role confusion as a child. Mother is so thoughtful.

“Victor, bring me a piece of dry rye toast, fresh squeezed orange juice and coffee with a shot of espresso.”

I looked at Mother, “Did you have a long night? You never add espresso.” I can be such an imp when I want to be.

Mother didn’t miss a beat, “Oh, Martin. Thank you for your concern. I tossed and turned worrying about you. I didn’t get to sleep until just after 3 this morning.”

I decided to let that one go. I wanted to ask for a review of Hot Bahama Nights, but I’ve seen it three times. “Thank you for worrying about me, Mother. When you meet J, you will see I’m in good hands. You won’t have to worry about me ever again.”

“When can you bring her over, Martin. She sounds delightful. I’d like to take her to the country club to meet all my friends and show her off.”

Mother gave me the opening. I said, “When we talk I’ll ask her if she is ready to come to dinner to meet Father and you. I know you’ll just love her.”

“Father. Father. Did you hear Martin?” said Mother.

Father looked up from the Wall Street Journal. He said, “Apple went up one point three percent. Sanderstuff holdings held steady.”

What a great family. I can’t want to ask J.