Friends! I last left you with my brother and three neighborhood friends in the cemetery trying to learn how to smoke when the town grocer, Tuenis Tillema joined them for some “real men” smoking lessons. Our smoking adventure continues. Enjoy!
By the end of the second cigarette Darren, Jason and Randy began to feel light-headed, a little… nauseated, and smoking wasn’t as cool as they thought it was. But, Tuenis persisted that real men could handle it, so on they went to cigarette number 3. This is where the glamour wore off…
It wasn’t long before Darren started to turn a little green. Cigarette number three was definitely his breaking point. He soon gave up and said he couldn’t do it anymore. I’m sure Tuenis was smiling from ear to ear; on the inside, of course. Watching Darren slowly walk, pausing here there to quell waves of nausea before slowly mounting his bike for the long peddle home.
One foolish boy succumbed to the nonsense of smoking, now for the remaining two. Eagerly encouraging the two remaining boys, Jason and Randy, Tuenis tapped the pack in his hand and drew out two additional cigarettes and handed each one cigarette number four.
Striking a match he lit the cigarettes and told them to draw deep. With cigarettes quivering between dried lips the boys could stand it no longer. Randy’s pale face had moved to a light shade of green and Jason was not far behind.
Coughing and half vomiting the boys threw the cigarettes onto the ground. Randy and Jason threw in the towel and said they were done. They watched Tuenis stamp out the half lit cigarettes and then slowly turned toward their bicycles.
Tuenis’s work was done. I’m sure he happily packed up his folding fishing chair and proudly stood. Giving a salute to the civil war veteran tombstone for a mission accomplished; behind which they all took refuge, and began his journey back to the store.
Randy didn’t have too far to bike. His home was just down the hill from the cemetery but Jason had a good block and a half. Climbing on to the bike, Jason felt waves of nausea and his once vigorous peddling was now half-hearted and shaky.
Someone’s in trouble now
Arriving home, my mother saw him ride his bike into the grass and half-crashing into the lawn, managed to walk right off his bike. He glanced up at the window to see my mom. The phone rang so she walked away from the window.
Sheepishly he quickly made his way into the house and down the stairs to the basement bathroom where he and the cool toilet bowl became fast friends for a few minutes.
This is where I come in. I had just arrived home from someplace and headed into the basement. I could hear my mom talking to someone, it started out serious but soon I could hear her holding back laughter and a few chuckles broke free.
I decided I should gather more information, so I sat quietly on the steps of the basement stairs. I heard my mom busily dialing the rotary phone and then hushed words, followed by busting-a-gut laughter.
Forgive me sister for I have sinned
My brother made his way from the basement bathroom to the stairs. He could hear my mom laughing and wondered what was going on. He was nervous, so I knew he had done something.
Slowly he told me what had gone down. Every so often his eyes would drift to the ceiling above as my mom moved around the kitchen talking and laughing.
Still green in color, I suggested he get a bucket and get ready because mom must know something was up. My advice- fess up and tell the truth. To which he nodded and steadied himself and went up the stairs.
Well, what do you have to say for yourself?
Opening the kitchen door, Jason walked into the kitchen. My mom had hung up from her phone call. A stern look in his direction let him know mom knew it all. “Well, what do you have to say for yourself?” said my mom.
From there, Jason delivered the whole sordid truth. I remained on the basement steps, hand over my mouth trying not to laugh. Mom clued Jason in on the phone call from Tuenis as well as a “chat” with Randy’s mom.
Once mom had finished scolding Jason, she invited him to lay down and rest. Adding that Dad would have a talk with him later. I just chuckled to myself and prayed for Jason. My dad was a smoker and I hoped he wouldn’t re-introduce the “art of smoking” to him that night.
That’s my story friends, and I’m sticking to it! Here is to great food, fun family memories and and very good life.