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Grandpa Bowser and Tiny Little Rosie by Dave Riley Printer Friendly

Grandpa Bowser grasped Tiny Little Rosie's hand as they strolled down the street. He towered over the small girl and had adjusted his gait to accommodate the slow yet anxious pitter-patter of her Mary Jane-clad feet. Grandpa Bowser had fashioned the pillbox hat on his head from an old newspaper; he tipped the hat to passers-by while he broadly simpered. He was very proud of his Tiny Little Rosie. She sporadically gazed up at him and giggled. The child felt secure and trusted her grandpa to protect her from the cruel world about which she had heard but had never experienced.

They were window-shopping when they found themselves in front of a tavern. Grandpa Bowser stopped, dropped to one knee, and lovingly informed Tiny Little Rosie: "Now see here, my precious rose among the thorns, I'm mighty dry. What say we go in here for to get us a drink? You can have your sodie pop and I'll have my Grandpa Bowser drink."

She reminded him: "But remember you promised me we'd be home in time for The Munchkin Show?"

"Sure I remember, my little one of joy." He almost wept at her innocence. "But the way I figure, we can have our drinks and be homeward bound in plenty of time to look at The Munchkin Show."

Tiny Little Rosie squealed, "Oh goody! The Munchkin Show is my favorite!"

Three middle-aged men sat at one of the tables in the dark and damp tavern. Grandpa Bowser and Tiny Little Rosie entered and made a beeline for the bar. He helped her climb onto a stool and then easily sat on the stool next to hers. She was so tiny that only her eyes and nose were visible to the fat bartender.

Grandpa Bowser pounded the bar with his fist, sneered and loudly proclaimed, "I am Grandpa Bowser and I can lick any man, woman, or child in this here sorry 'stablishment!"

The bartender made a halting gesture with his hands and tried to placate Grandpa Bowser: "Sure you can. Sure you can Grandpa Bowser." The three men hurriedly downed their beers and then scampered out of the tavern, arcing as they passed Grandpa Bowser and Tiny Little Rosie.

"And just so you know," Grandpa Bowser continued. "I'd piss on the radiator if'n it was wintertime. Now, fetch me a Seven-and-Seven you lard-assed barkeep you! And my Tiny Little Rosie'll have . . . "

His sneer morphed into a smile when he turned to softly ask Tiny Little Rosie what she wanted. She looked up at Grandpa Bowser while she requested a Lemonfizzjuice "on accounta that's what they always drink on The Munchkin Show."

Grandpa Bowser's sneer reappeared as he turned back to the bartender and barked, "Well, you heard her you lard-assed barkeep you. And my Tiny Little Rosie better relish it or your butt is my meat!"

"Right away Grandpa Bowser," the bartender assured him as he waddled on his way to prepare the drinks.

He returned and placed two smudged glasses on the bar in front of the patrons. Grandpa Bowser shot the bartender a scowl and maintained eye contact with him as he sampled the Seven-and-Seven. He didn't swallow but noisily swished the mixture around in his mouth and surveyed the ceiling like he was evaluating a fine wine. Tiny Little Rosie briefly scrutinized her drink and complained to Grandpa Bowser: "That's not real live Lemonfizzjuice. It's too dark."

The bartender cringed and quickly interjected, "Why, that's delicious blackberry soda! See, we don't get much call for Lemonfizzjuice in here." He nervously chuckled. Tiny Little Rosie began to cry.

Grandpa Bowser spat the contents of his mouth onto the bartender's face. A stream of Seven-and-Seven trickled down his chin as he patted Tiny Little Rosie's head: "Don't cry, my sweet honeywad."

Then he turned to the dripping bartender and vehemently growled, "Now see what you gone and done, you foul lard-assed barkeep you? You made my Tiny Little Rosie shed tears! By Cornelius, if you had a sister, she'd be a whore! I'd rough you up but good, you bad scoundrel, but now I must take care of my poor Tiny Little Rosie!"

He stood up from his stool and guided Tiny Little Rosie to her feet. She still sobbed and rubbed her eyes with the tops of her loose fists. He gently pulled her right fist from her eye and then delicately clasped her relaxed hand.

"Don't you fuss, my wee gift from above. " He comforted the little one as he led her toward the door. "On the way home we'll stop and get many gallons of Lemonfizzjuice so you can drink them all up while you look at The Munchkin Show."

The thought somewhat cheered Tiny Little Rosie; through her tears she started singing the theme to The Munchkin Show.

When they got to the door Grandpa Bowser turned and extended the middle finger of his free hand. He waved the hand around in order that the bartender would notice the featured digit. He shouted, "A pox upon thee, you foul lard-assed barkeep you! I'll for sure darken your doorstep again, you bet!"

That winter Grandpa Bowser returned to the tavern and, when no one was looking, pissed on the radiator.



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