A Holiday Prize

Published December 5, 2009 by Larry Fisher

Some of you have a difficult time reading my fiction because my characters do stupid things and say stupid things.
I only write fiction to tone down reality. People in my world are capable of just about anything… stupid.
So, it was summer time and for whatever reason the heat was on.Something was wrong with the boiler and it was blasting on a ninty degree day.) The lady who lived above the store came running down screaming that her doggy had died. I was busy with a customer and I told Ant to go check on the dog.
He came back and said,”The dog is dead.”

I told him to call the city and find out what to do.
“They said,”Get it wrapped up in a box and leave it on the curb.
The lady was hysterical and so I told Ant to do it for her.
After he packed up the dog and put it out on the curb, I happened to glance out the window and see a fancy box on the curb, wrapped in polka dot gift wrapping with a bow and a card.
“Ant you wrapped the dog in gift wrapping?”
“I looked for plain brown paper but that was all I could find. It was really hot in that apartment. I thought I was going to faint.”
Ant was my Gomer Pyle and I was Seargent Carter. I began to question Ant’s ability to handle the situation,”Did the dog feel cold and hard when you put it in the box?”
“No, it felt really hot.”
“Are you sure it was dead? Cause a dead animal would be hard like a brick in a couple of hours and she said it died during the night.”
I ran out to retrieve the overheated animal but the box was gone.
Down the block I could see shredded polka dots of pink and black and ran to find the trail, or should I say tail. No sight of the animal. I checked the garbage can and ran up the block… Nothing, gone.
The old lady had three other old dogs who survived her. When the old lady died around Christmas, I did not send Ant to check on her corpse. They took her away in a traditional means. She was not wrapped in polka dots and a ribbon.
Around New Years I saw that old beast of hers. It had survived the fiasco. It walked by with an old guy who lived in the hotel. The dog took a leak on the tree outside the store, where it had always pissed.
The owner called him,”Prize, come here girl.”
They marched up Manhattan Avenue till the next tree.
Ant had a big dumb smile on his face revealing his middle aged braces.

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