By Eileen Curley Hammond
I shoulda knowed it was a bad idea. At night when Frank was workin’, and the moon was new, I’d slip out in my house dress, sit on top of the portico where it was cool, and have a smoke with my Gin Rickey. I found out all kinds of interestin’ stuff that way. Who knew the baker and the seamstress were steppin’ out—me. And, what was that thing with the Fitzgeralds last year? Wooee. That was some donnybrook. I was the first on the block with that scoop. No one noticed me sittin’ there with my back against the brick or the warm glow of my cigarette.
Anyhow, the baby was howlin’ this morning,’ and Frank wanted his eggs sunny-side up. I cursed because it was hard to get them outta the pan in one piece. A yoke broke, and he laid into me somethin’ fierce. I tossed my apron on the chair, grabbed my hat, and slammed the door. A soft breeze wafted through the open hall window. I hadn’t ever climbed through in the daylight. I looked right and then left. “Just a quick cig, no one will notice.”
Well, it sure didn’t work out that way. Some nosy parker musta called the police. Next thing I know, sirens were blarin’, nets strung, and all other kinds of other folderol. Then this dolt tried to grab me, yelling, “Don’t jump, lady.” Like I was gonna. All I wanted was a moment of peace and quiet; just one single second to myself. Besides, what would Frank and the tyke do without me? They’d never make it, not even a week.
I beat the guy back with my favorite hat, straightened my dress, and pushed another copper to the side so I could climb back in the window. The crowd cheered, and I took a little bow—it sure wasn’t my usual Monday.