…It was cold. I shivered somewhat, got my bearings and proceeded into the playground. Gerard was already outside, leaning against the white wooden picket fence that led out to freedom.
“Hey Gilly, over here.”
I gave up.
“Ready to go,” he asked assuredly.
“Here take these will ya.” He then handed me off a bunch of notepads. “I cannot carry them because my right arm hurts.”
What about your left arm I thought, but did not dare to ask. I did not want to jeopardize my upcoming windfall. I took the notepads.
We got on our way. Gerard lived at northern border of our school district. It was the polar opposite to where I lived. No matter. The payoff will be worth the trouble. On we went. I didn’t talk too much, just listened to Gerard’s ramblings. And what about the caramels I interrupted? Where did you get them? How did you get them? Are there enough there for both of us? Are they old? New? Fresh? Stale? Packaged? In ones? Two’s? Or three’s? What Gerard? Tell me. Are they in boxes? Big boxes? Small boxes? Wrapped up? In singles? What? How many? Enough for both of us? Your family? Your brother Art? The others? Nooo, you don’t really have any caramels do ya?
Yes, yes, don’t worry, of course, yes, yes, sure are, and more yeses. I was beginning to sound a bit weird. My bubba-like questions were beginning to become ingratiating and pedantic. I stopped with my stupid interrogation. Perhaps I was growing suspicious. I needed reassurance. Of course he ranted about how important his uncle is in the Kraft hierarchy. Chief Caramel Kahuna, he bragged. The big Caramel Kahuna, or the Big Cheese. The Big Cheese I queried. Er, No, no, no, no, my mistake Gerard said. Make that the big caramel. Kraft also made cheese. Cheddar I think: slices and Cheese Whiz. And of course that famous staple known to all single, male, intellectually challenged young men the world over – Kraft Dinner or KD for short. No matter. Vice President of caramel production, his uncle was good enough for me…