Mom unfolds the wooden tray table, puts down her Swanson’s TV dinner and her glass filled with a stiff stiff gin. She watches the 6 o’clock news with her cats Mr. Clean and Baby Clean*. She looks down at her peas and feels so alone. Dad died on the doorstep 10 years ago today. She eats a few bites, puts down her fork, moves the tray to the side. She lights a Lucky Strike cigarette, reclines deep into her lime green La-Z-Boy chair and sips her drink. Baby Clean hops onto the table and starts chewing on the fried turkey chunks. They were still a little frozen on the inside, but he didn’t mind.

 

Commercial break is a perfect time to make supper. Mom gets up, walks to the freezer and pulls out a Swanson’s TV dinner. She remembers that Dad died 10 years ago today. She microwaves the meal for a few minutes, makes herself a stiff stiff gin and brings them to the living room. She goes to pull out the wooden tray table only to realize that there’s already a drink and a half eaten Swanson’s already there.

 

Mom piles the trays, sits in her La-Z-Boy chair and pets Mr. Clean. Maybe it’s time to call Davie, things have gotten a little worse lately. She can’t remember his phone number, for the life of her. Now where did she put her address book?

 

Where did she put that address book...

 

 *Mr. Clean, a fluffy white kitty had mistakenly been assigned a male name. One hot summer’s evening, Mr. Clean went out and got herself pregnant. The ensuing kitten was named Baby Clean.


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