By Christine Swanberg
Author and Poet
Here is another satirical Christmas newsy letter from Cleo Johnson, a favorite with Literary Hook audiences. Cleo has a flair for the ridiculous, so if you are needing a little destressing this holiday, have a good laugh with this.
Happy year for the Rathskellers
What’s up? I hope y’all have had a good year. We sure have. Me and Horace, well, we always have a good year. I get a little bummed out at the end of my second shift, but I have got used to it. They let me sit on a stool now to give my poor legs a rest whilst I pack those pretty little flowered chocolate candies in the Fannie Mae boxes. It’s a little tirin’.
Horace has been able to work much more this year. If those dad gum police had not been so picky when he hit that mailbox last JUly, he could have had a lot more time to earn money. He is a worker, he is. After he got out of jail, he worked at least 21 hours a week and is already making $7 per nour. You got no idee what a relief that has been to me. Now I can cut myself down to 65 hours a week. If our luck holds, maybe I will be up to min’ wage by November next.
Chancy Horsytan, our oldet, turned 16 last April. He didn’t have his best year, actually. He got a job at Krispy Kreme right after he got kicked out of school. He didn’t know he wasn’t supposed to eat any of the Krispies. He only et 10 of ’em in a day, and they was kinda smushed anyway. So, the hotsie, totsie boss yelled at him, “Git outa her you **&^$%$#$$^&* REDNIK. I knowed it was a mistake to hire you! Just can’t get good help these days. Lazy hillbillies!”
Darla, now 15, was proposed to by Virgl Pockernose last week. Virg is a good boy. He has his own car, a blue- and green-striped rambler just like his grandpa’s, a perty sixth-floor walk-up apartment on 29th St. and a stockin’ job at Wallmarts. He makes a little under min’ wage. His lousy boss wouldn’t give him min’ wage cause he couldn’t pass the math test. Princess Darla turned him down. Don’t know when she got so uppity. I told her, “He has a job and he don’t hit ya or nothin’. What more do ya’ want?” She’s mighty picky and persnickity for a kid as old as she is.
The triplets, Fardy, Mardy and Jinx, well, they may not make it home for Christmas. Bein’ only 13 the thorities decided to put them in a juvy desention faculty. I said to them, I said, “maybe you little snotasses larned your lesson and will stop tryin’ to pick up the hotsy totsy Cadilacs you see in parking lots. If you larned anything from your Pa you should know that the thorities spend lots less time looking for a stolen 1953 Edsel convertable with purple rims.”
So, there ya’ are. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, y’all. I know we will.
Sincereness, Hermione Hellen Rathskeller, wife of Horace Rathskeller, the first.
Christine Swanberg is a local author and poet. She received the Lawrence E. Gloyd Community Impact Award at the 2012 Rockford Area Arts Council State of the Arts Awards.
From the Dec. 19-25, 2012, issue