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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Bob’s Not Supposed to Drink Pop

Mary has a soft spot for people.

The little weirdo really likes them.

Want to laugh until you fall over? She’s your gal. Lonely? Same person. Afraid that weird woman at the bar is going to come after you when you head for your car?

As her ancestors would say, “Is this a private fight, or can anyone join in?”

And I tell you that to tell you this: Mary’s been visiting an ex-coworker’s elderly mother.

Once a week, Mary takes the bus to the nursing home to check on Rose.

It is possible, on some days, that Rose believes Mary is a daughter. And isn’t she? Like a good girl, Mary brings her little treats: flowers, sugar cookies, stories, her full attention.

Rose is not the only person in the home, of course, and Mary knows most of them, brings them jokes and smiles, teases them.

She left her purse and a bag containing a gift – a two-liter bottle of root beer – in the common room the other day while she went to go get Rose. Rose likes a glass of root beer after lunch and dinner. It aids in her digestion, she says.

When she came back, however, the root beer was out of the bag and in the hands of Bob.

Bob, an 84-year-old man no longer allowed pop due to his diabetes, is almost half-way through the bottle.

“Bob! Drop the pop!”

Bob may be 84, but he’s still taller than Mary; and having found the treat, he is not to be denied. He shakes his head “no” vigorously, droplets of root beer flying, his moustache holding shiny, fragrant beads of the forbidden treat.

“Mph mphh,” he mumbles, his cheeks full to the point of explosion. Bob looks like an elderly, trumpet-free and guilty Dizzy Gillespie.

Luckily, Mary happens to speaks Mumble. “You are too!”

Bob lifts the bottle to his lips, chugs root beer as Mary swats at his arms. “You know you’re not supposed to have pop, Bob!”

Root beer runs down his chin and onto the front of his shirt as he swallows.

“I’m not,” he challenges between swallows. “I’m not having pop.”

“Oh my God, Bob, you liar,” Mary teases him. “You’re not drinking pop? Right now? You’re not drinking pop?”

“Nope,” Bob says around a mouthful. “Not allowed pop.”

The nursing home authorities were called in, of course – “He looked so happy, but I knew he wasn’t supposed to have it” – and the half-finished bottle was wrested from his happy, sticky hands.

Mary reports that Bob harbors no ill will against her.

And he’s the first one at the door when she visits now.

27 comments:

Irisheyes said...

Bob has been also known to slam a jug of prune juice in 30 seconds. The fridge at the home is now padlocked due to the negative ramifications from this incident. :)

powdergirl said...

Haha, cute story, Mary is The Bomb of Minnesota Nice : )

Pearl said...

Mary, and THAT little visual oughta get me through the rest of the day!

Hey, powdergirl! And yes, you are right. Mary is the bomb. :)

MJenks said...

I like Mary. I've never met Mary, but I like Mary.

We had a Bob at the nursing home where I worked. His name was (wait for it) Bob, and he would be there, 4:30 in the morning when you turned on the lights in the kitchen, looking for a Sanka, with two sweet things and a little bit of cow's milk.

He, too, was denied the sweets in life thanks to diabetes. It wouldn't stop him. He'd cheat at BINGO on Thursdays to win bananas.

FabuLeslie said...

"Bob looks like an elderly, trumpet-free and guilty Dizzy Gillespie." You are too good. I come here daily and learn so much about writing! I love it. Thanks for the laughs too.

Pearl said...

MJenks, I've no doubt that you and Mary would have lots to talk about. She's smart and funny and what we call in MN "good sh*t". :-) I'm in love with Mary today. :-D

FabuLeslie, wow. That's the coolest thing related to me that I've heard today. I thank you and would like to buy you a beer and/or coffee.

Sweet Cheeks said...

Bob is a survivalist...aint nobody gonna stand between him and that rootbeer!
=]
For her visits to Rose...MARY ROCKS!

Bossy Betty said...

I'm on Bob's side in this!!

justsomethoughts... said...

"elderly, trumpet-free and guilty Dizzy Gillespie"


unparalleled.

Lisa said...

You are a great story teller, Pearl. I could see whole thing.

a Broad said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
a Broad said...

Ahh, the world needs more Marys ...

and I Do Agree with Lisa, you are such a great story teller !

Pearl said...

What, am I sick?! Is there something you guys aren't telling me?

Sorry -- I get nervous around a lot of compliments. You may have to continue with them until I calm down...

:-)

Sweet Cheeks said...

My, that is one snappy outfit you have on there, Missy.

You look fabulous!

;-)

Pearl said...

THank 'ee, Sweet Cheeks! :-) It's consignment!

Sarah said...

This world needs more Mary!

Douglas said...

Pearl, you have described what I go through on an almost daily basis. My sis-in-law is diabetic and constantly sneaks sugary snacks whenever the opportunity arises. I, because I am a good person take them from her and consume them... purely in her best interests.

Pearl said...

We DO need more Mary.

And Douglas, you're just doing your duty, taking those sweets. :-) Good man!

Candice@NotesFromABroad said...

WAIT a minute ! Do you mean if WE eat more sweets, we will be saving someone from a possible diabetic episode ? I will be doing GOOD by eating the last half of that impossibly chocolatey brownie that the husband brought home today ?
Oh man... I like this ... it is my duty to eat sweets.
Please give Mary my thanks.. oh and you too Pearl. snort ! :-)

Woof said...

I'm not supposed to have pop either. At least not the kind with caffeine (I had to type "caffeine" like 8 times before I got it right). I feel sorry for Bob.

Gigi said...

Poor old Bob. I know what his alibi was - to him it wasn't "pop" it was "soda."

What a wonderful person this Mary is - and might I say you look stunning today.

Silliyak said...

Keep an eye on Bob. He might start to wear dresses so he can "eat, drink, and be Mary"

Gregory said...

"Speaks mumble" is this sorta like reading typo?

Cheeseboy said...

Poor Billy.

This reminds me of the time I was visiting my Grandma at the home and I gave the old man sitting next to her a plastic cup full of water. He stuck the entire cup in his mouth and just smiled at me. The nurses had to come force him to spit it out.

思恬 said...

人生像一杯茶,若一飲而盡,會提早見到杯底..................................................

Joanna Jenkins said...

“Bob! Drop the pop!” What a hoot.
Another great story, Pearl. Thanks.
jj

Teresa Evangeline said...

"Is this a private fight, or can anyone join in?" Love it. Now, to find a way to work it into a conversation... And hats off to Bob. "Do not go gentle into that good night."