we all scream

I drop Mo off at the pottery studio, leaving me with a couple of hours to kill. It’s an unfamiliar neighborhood, so i wander about aimlessly in far north PHX.

I end up at a generic shopping center, not unlike every other bland conglomerate in our fair country in the days since ma and pa were replaced by soulless corporations. (ok, stepping off soapbox. although soapboxes also are a thing of the past.)

I go into Barnes & Noble, mildly surprised after too long with Libby that things called “books” still exist in print. How does this place survive? I walk around in a state of guilt, stealing employees’ earnest recommendations for later use, the 21st century equivalent of Abbie Hoffman’s “Steal This Book.” Oh, well. I’m a journalist. Nobody pays for words anymore.

A detour into a Big Box for proper chocolate bunnies proves futile, the desperate period between nothing left and 50 percent off. Maybe the Mini-Hers won’t notice the chocolate is petroleum-based. I wander aimlessly amid the masses until recluse mode kicks in.

And then, I’ve run out of stops.

And then i see it.

An ice cream shop.

Initially, I feel guilty. I shouldn’t get ice cream without Mo. I can wait until later, when we can enjoy it together.

And then it occurs to me: She’ll never know!!! The Perfect Crime.

I order a much-too-big butter pecan and a diet coke, despite the foreboding that a certain gentleman in San Angelo will find it inappropriate. I pay the nice lady and relax out front with my Secret Scoop. Life is good.

And then.

My phone buzzes.

It’s Mo.


I don’t say anything. Partly out of fear, but mostly because my mouth is full of bootleg ice cream.

“Seriously!!!” she exclaims. “Someone just bought ice cream with my credit card!!! I think it’s been stolen!!!”

Ummmmmm, I respond. Only then do I look at the card. She accidentally switched our identical blue Visa cards earlier in the day during her IRS mambo. I have just used hers, which apparently has an alert that tells her whenever a charge is made.

What can I do? I tell her the truth.

Yeah, right.

Instead, I explain that a group of hungry orphans were outside the ice cream store and i felt compelled to buy them a small treat for Easter. Since there were no chocolate bunnies to be had, I bought them one large scoop and 17 spoons. I am a Good Person.

At that point, Mo is so relieved her card hasn’t been stolen that she overlooks that I’m totally cheating on her.

I enjoy the rest of my ill-gotten bounty, celebrate my Smith Boy knack for deadline excuses (thanks, Rick!) and make a mental note to buy Mo ice cream on the way home.

With her credit card, of course …

About gary

no sock monkeys were harmed in the making of this blog.
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3 Responses to we all scream

  1. LOL! 😊 Have you ever gotten away with anything??

  2. niall says:

    🤣 I love it 👏

  3. unironedman says:

    We have a joint account, so my retribution comes later, when the statement arrives…

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