Richard was barely comfortable with his transition into adulthood. First he changed his name. He was now the more mature Richard instead of the very boyish Richie. There had to be something more to the process. It was still unsettling when someone called him Richard. He felt like he was being passive/aggressively berated by his mother, God bless her soul. He swirled his glass of champagne and looked over at his lovely wife, Lori Beth. He raised his glass in such a way, so he could view her distorted features through the bubbly yellow filter. The sight frightened him. He lowered the glass, and spoke instead.
“I swear, it’s miraculous I didn’t die from laughing so hard. You know how Potsie and the Fonz can get into “it”, well, they were getting into “it”, and the Fonz let loose a punch.” Lori Beth stabbed her steak, looked up at Richard and smiled politely. The years had been kind to them, aging in all the right places, growing, graying, and filling out appropriately. Richard kept on squawking.
“So then Potsie wipes the blood from his lip with the back of his hand, and just like John Wayne in that movie we just saw.” He stopped. She nodded, he continued jabbering.
“He decks the Fonz, full-on pow, right in the kisser.” Richard emulated the punch and looked very stupid. “The Fonz reels and falls backwards, you know, how gravity would dictate. And you know Fonz, he never takes guff, so he gets right back up and takes a swing at Pots. Of course, Potsie ducks, and whammo, blammo, in walks Malph to take the punch like a vaudeville pie to the face. It was a massive deck out, fist to unsuspecting face, and much too funny.”
Richard could no longer speak, he was laughing so hard. He even snorted. He pounded his fist on the table shaking his head, while lifting his legs in the air. He did all the things a bad actor would do to make the audience member in the farthest back row understand.
Lori Beth slammed down her Jim Beam® on the rocks, dramatically tossing back her head, exposing her neck fully, and meekly said, “Richie, I mean, Richard, I’m leaving you.”
Richard’s laugh slowly evolved into a cough, which turned into crying, which escalated into full-on bawling.