I ride him up to the front of the house, but start slowing down when I see a car pull up in front of Ma and Pa’s. Not just any car, but a brand new four-door 1931 Cadillac that I know Uncle Will paid through the nose for.
“Cono!” I hear Aunt Nolie yell, “Come say ‘hello’ to yer Uncle Will.” I ride Polo over to Uncle Will, as he’s getting out of his fancy car wearing his fancy suit, five dollar Mallory hat and carrying his fancy walking stick. Since he’s married to Ma’s sister, Aunt Oler, I know I need to be polite, but it’s hard to be since he’s always such a horse’s butt. His money never helps us out none. I’m not sure it helps him either ‘cause it sure doesn’t make him a nice feller. Last time he came over he looked at me and said, “Why Cono, ye haven’t grown an inch. You better watch out or yer little sister’s gonna catch up with ye, Ha ha ha.” I didn’t like it when he said that, not one little bit.
Polo and I ride up close to him he says, “Well, hello there Cono..”
I’m just waiting for another report about how I’m not growing and I’m about to say, “Hello sir” but don’t get the chance. He walks over to me and pulls me right off Polo with his fancy walking stick. “Well, I’ll be damned” is what I’m thinking; the shock of it all doesn’t let me think of anything else. Uncle Will laughs. I can’t believe it, but he reaches in his pocket and thumb-flicks me a shiny penny.
“Save it up fer a rainy day there, young fella.”
I pick it up off the ground and mumble, “Thank you, sir.”
Aunt Oler and Aunt Nolie don’t pay me no mind, they just go on talking. I get up, grab Polo by the reins and walk slowly back towards the house. I don’t want Uncle Will to know that underneath my hat, my dander is up. So what if he’s got an oil rig named after him? So what he just gave me a shiny new penny? It ain’t like I’ve never seen one before! As far as I’m concerned, Uncle Will’s just a short, fat, King’a Fancy Man and I wish I had his Cadillac and he had a wart on his butt. I’m just gonna go put that penny in my cigar box until I think of something to do with it.
Probably buy some paper to wipe my butt with.
From my novel, No Hill for a Stepper.