COMIC RELIEF by Patricia Gligor
The novels in my Malone mystery series, Mixed Messages and Unfinished Business, address some serious subjects. My main character, Ann, is married to David, an alcoholic so, of course, there are “issues” involved in her marriage. Also, she’s raising two young children with all that entails and she’s dealing with a “difficult” (to put it mildly) mother-in-law. As if that weren’t enough to cope with, there’s a serial killer on the loose in Ann’s neighborhood, attacking women in their homes. Serious stuff!
But even with all the problems she has, Ann manages to find some comic relief in her life. The main source of humor for her is her six-year-old son, Davey, an adorable little boy with light blonde hair, big blue eyes and the typical inquisitiveness and precociousness of a boy his age. In this excerpt from Unfinished Business, Davey interrupts a serious conversation between his mother, Ann, and his Aunt Marnie who are in the kitchen doing the dishes.
“Mommy, I’m hungry!” Davey said, charging into the room. He was wearing his mother’s treasured multi-colored scarf around his neck.
“Davey Kern, where did you find that?” Ann asked, pointing to the scarf.
“I found it in the closet, Mommy. In that big box where you keep the ornaments.”
“What the heck were you doing in there?”
“Hiding from Sam when we played hide’n seek. He couldn’t find me,” he boasted, “so I won!”
“Well, hand it over, young man. I’ve been looking all over for this. Where are Sam and Dani?”
“Dani’s in her room, reading one of those Narnia books Aunt Marnie gave her, and Sam said he wanted to take a nap. He said hide’n seek made him tired.” He sat down and leaned his elbows on the table. “I’m not tired but I’m starved! Can you make me something to eat?”
“Poof,” Marnie said, waving her hand at him and sprinkling water in the air. “You’re a sandwich.”
It took Davey a few seconds to get the joke but then he broke out laughing.
“Marn, looks like our talk will have to wait,” Ann said. She walked over to the refrigerator and peered inside. “So, what would you like, Davey? I have goat milk, pig tails and donkey ears.”
“Boy, Mommy,” he said. “You’re always telling me I’m wound up. I think you and Aunt Marnie are wound up now.” He stood up, walked over to his mother and pretended to turn an imaginary key on her back. Then he went over to his aunt and did the same thing. “There,” he announced, “you’re both unwound. May I please have a sandwich now?”
We all know that children often have a way of saying and doing things that brings a smile to even the saddest face. I remember a TV show when I was a little girl. Art Linkletter hosted a segment at the end of each show called “Kids say the darndest things.” The show ran from 1952 to 1970 and, during that time, Mr. Linkletter interviewed over 20,000 kids. It brought some humor into the lives of millions of viewers, brightening their day.
Readers’ Digest claims that “laughter is the best medicine” and I believe that’s true! Have you laughed today?
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