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David, Al’s brother, called.
“Al and Angel went to happy hour.”
“You know how it is? They think they need a grape slushie every day, so they drive through and get a happy hour drink for a dollar. The slushie machine has been broken, and you would think someone cut their throats. When they give their order, the young man at the window knows who they are by the voice. Angel and Al think that’s really special that he knows their names.
“I tell them, ‘It’s just good business. That business makes two dollars a day off of you.’ Anyway, they live for those grape slushies.’
“Grape slushie? That’s not what I call happy hour.”
“Yes, I know. Your happy hour costs you a lot more than a dollar a day. You’ve spent a fortune on women when you don’t even know their names and they probably forget yours. Thank God, my Sweet Al doesn’t have your bent. At least the young man at the drive-through window knows Al’s name.”
David asked, “What else is going on in Pagosa?”
“I just finished a book with all The Artist’s Lane articles in it from 2008 to 2012. It’s available on Lulu.com.”
“That seems fitting, but no, Lulu.com. You’re in it. There’s a section just on you. You need to buy a book and make me happy!”
“Oh, my God!”
“It’s going to be a coffee table book and a bathroom size book. You can read about all your girlfriends when you’re too old to do anything else.”
“That will never happen. I met a girl last night. I’ve been out of town and working hard. I needed to get out. So, I cleaned up and went out to a couple of nightspots. I met two girls in their thirties. They were both as cute as they could be, but there was one I was really attracted to. I bought them both a glass of wine. The one I was interested in looked like she wanted to be kissed.”
“And, what does that look like?”
“I don’t know. It’s a look, you just feel it, it says ‘kiss me.’ So I just reached over and kissed her. She kissed me back. I got her phone number. When she left she kissed me three more times.”
“Well, I guess I can be happy: My Sweet Al comes home with purple lips instead of kisses on them from some strange woman.”
“Al couldn’t handle this kind of happy hour. My problem is wondering what’s next.”
“Do you mean, the next girl or the next job?”
“Both,” David laughed.
“Thank God for little favors. I guess you know this conversation will be in the next book? I’m calling it ‘Too much happy hour.’ I’ve already started a new book for 2013 and I’ve already written two articles about you.”
Final brushstroke: I’m home typing while Al is enjoying a grape slushie and happy hour. I guess a grape slushie is harmless after talking to Al’s brother, David. Happy hour for me is seeing my next article in the newspaper. I guess it’s whatever makes you happy!
“Empty pockets never held anyone back. Only empty heads and empty hearts can do that.” — Norman Vincent Peale
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