Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Ow! (01/07/10)
TITLE: Johnny & Cindy 4-ever
By Mary Lou Cook
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Jonathan and my sister-in-law Cynthia lived in a cape cod that overlooked the James River. He worked for a large financial company and she owned an interior design business. Over their twenty-five year marriage they had done well for themselves. Last year, Jonathan had celebrated his fiftieth birthday with an elaborate party held at the country club. My brother and his wife had a scheduled life that never wavered from their day to day routine. With their predictable ways, I couldn’t imagine either one doing anything horrible.
As I drove into the driveway, Lisa came running out of the house. She threw herself into my arms and cried, “Uncle Dan, it’s awful, I didn’t recognize my own parents.”
I took Lisa by the hand and walked her into the house to hear an awful sound coming from the garage. I walked down the hallway with her cowering behind me. Trying to be heard over the loud noise, Lisa yelled, “I found Mom and Dad in there.” She started to cry and pointed at the door into the garage.
Suddenly, the door flew open and there stood Cynthia. Except for the pink tutu, my sister-in-law was dressed from head to toe in black. Her auburn hair had been dyed the color of a rainbow. “Danny, it’s like really cool of you to stop by, your brother’s in the garage jamming.”
I put a protective arm around Lisa and pulled her close. “Cynthia, are you and Jonathan okay? Lisa and I are worried about you.”
“Cynthia was such a total drag, that’s so not like me. I’ve been reborn a new cool chick. From now on call me Cindy.”
I asked the former Cynthia, now the new cool chick Cindy, what she had done with my brother Jonathan. I was having thoughts of her overdosing on her estrogen pills, putting his chopped-up remains in gallon size Ziploc bags, and sticking him in the freezer.
“Jonathan’s like so uncool. Johnny’s in the garage adjusting his woofers.”
Lisa and I followed her mother through the laundry room to the garage. Where Jonathan use to park his BMW now sat a large sound system. Across the back wall were a drum set and on a metal rack hung an assortment of guitars. In between the two oversized speakers stood my brother holding an electric bass guitar. Around his neck was a white guitar strap proclaiming in gold letters “Johnny & Cindy 4ever”. He wore spandex pants and a Grateful Dead t-shirt. His never-out-of-place hair was now a lime green Mohawk.
With his fingers playing across the guitar strings, he sang a loud song, “Ow, my Cindy Chick, sweeter than a candy on a stick. Ow, together, forever, she and I caught the love fever. Ow, ow, ow”
I walked over to him and yelled over the twangs of the electric guitar. “Are you okay?”
The former Jonathan, now Johnny Cool, stopped singing and looked at me with a smile. He gave my upper arm a hard punch.
“Danny, I’m more than okay. On my fiftieth b-day I realized that my disappointing life had become a vast of boring nothingness. I reached the half-way mark to find it all a let-down and wanted back the days of excitement. I told my Cindy Chick I wanted to get the group back together. She and I decided to start the band again.”
“Jonathan, those were your college days, aren’t you too old for a rock band?”
“Ow man, that hurts. It’s too late for Jonathan and Cynthia, but not for Johnny and Cindy.”
I felt a headache starting. “Where’s the BMW?”
“I traded it for the sound system, dude. Want to know the cool part? My Cindy Chick’s the lead singer. I talked to some of the boys from my old band about joining again. ”
“The boys are now old enough for a senior citizen discount. What’s the name of your band, old and senile?” My headache was headed straight for a migraine.
“Hey dude, the band’s called ‘Midlife Crisis.”
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