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author:  Margie Culbertson

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The Restaurant Rollers


Tom O'Brien

Kathryn, my better half, and I were coming home from the city one evening when we stopped for dinner at a place that she likes. It has a nice view of a river and other stuff that reminds her of an earlier home.

No sooner had we got seated at her favorite table then we heard this awful boom thud crash thump boom bang. There might also have been a whump.We looked down and we saw a big woman and a bigger man flopping and rolling on the floor. He was bald while she sported a Mohawk style haircut. Bits of straw clung to their boots. Their necks had not been near water in some time. They stopped, jumped up, and dropped down rolling over one another without saying a word. Then they jumped up a second time and ran out of the dining room and into the parking lot to where their car waited. They sped away.

I looked at Kath. She was shaking out the last molecule of perfume onto her fingertip. I got up and opened a window. That is when it all started.First there was a swaggering 15 year old boy with the overbearing confidence of a tank commander. His tee shirt screamed, " Don't Forget – Me Boss." He marched close to where we were sitting and accused us of making "all that–there noise and stuff." Kath's eyebrows bristled when he aimed a dirty fingernail her way. (From here on I knew enough to remain silent or suffer indescribable misery.)

He cleared his throat and continued. "My dad 'n mom want to talk to yous about that there ruckus that you made." He smacked his hand at a mosquito on his wrist and missed. Hmm, his comments are not unique I muttered. Kath was well into her python mode.

She held up her index finger and beckoned him closer.

He obeyed. Poor fellow. She leaned near his face. Slowly she inhaled.

His eyes dulled and his self–confidence sank to an unknown abyss. Big gobs of perspiration dotted his brow. As her nostrils flared his breathing slowed to a crawl.

His face turned ashen when a police cruiser, with whirring siren, came to a sliding stop in the parking lot.

"Stick out your tongue," she ordered. He whimpered, and a sickly tip extended from between his pale lips.

"Open your mouth ... wide."

"Wider," she hissed directly into his ear"

"AAAAGGHHH," he bellowed.

She paused and fanned the air near his mouth. She inhaled deeply and her nose twisted.

"Does your school nurse know that you have lip and tongue blisters?"

He cupped his hands around his face and whimpered. "Does your mother know that you don't brush your teeth?""HUH?"

He dropped his hands from his face to steal a glance at Kath. Panic stricken, he ran to the washroom.

As the flushing toilet muffled some of the sobs and whimpers, a police officer strode up to where we were sitting. His holster cover flopped up and down as he walked nearer to us.

"Where's your gun," asked Kath. He checked his breast and side pockets. "Oops, guess I left it on the dash board."

He then took a deep breath. "Do any of you folks have a pencil? I must make notes about some bad chaps who disturbed the tranquility and peace."I looked inside my jacket. Kath kicked my shin as if I trumped her ace. She gets vicious at times like whenever we play together in Bridge Tournaments. "Inspector sir, no, I'm afraid we don't have any pens or pencils," said Kath. He looked as if he enjoyed Kath's promotion.

She paused, wetted her lips, and inquired, "Inspector, how do you enjoy this new posting of yours? You have certainly come up through the ranks very quickly. It seems like only yesterday when I saw you graduate from the Police Academy."

He appeared lost in another world.

"So you know Sandcastle Academy do you," he said and on both his knees, he began singing the school song. "Sandy's up, Sandy's up, up like the rose buds high on the vines ...…" (After 9 more verses I felt I deserved heaven.)

A young family entered the room and their 5–year–old daughter asked aloud, "where's this geek come from, mommy?" Her little brother reached up and tilted his hat.

Kath's face changed when the 2 rollers reappeared. They looked hungry. They could not see the snarling owner–cook twiddling a big fork and standing in the kitchen doorway.

How is Kath going to get us out of here, I wondered. In a flash she grabbed my arm and lead me around the kneeling off key virtuoso. As he finished, she leaned close to him. "Very Very fine performance … Inspector Sandy, I'll call you later about a recording session and road tour, OK?"

©Tom O'Brien

Before the Arc was designed, Tom studied biology and drinking at the University of Windsor. He failed both. He taught high school and college sciences and drove a limousine. With that illustrious training he now writes humour articles on his goat farm not far from the North Pole.

Tom has also published humor articles in the North Bay Nugget, and in the Mattawa Recorder, plus several general news articles in the Mattaway Recorder—all of Canada. In addition he has published several Ezine short stories.

You can read more of Tom's writing at his blogsite:  Click HERE.

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©Margie Culbertson

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