Did I ever tell you about my cousin Herbie the gangster? Well, he had a gun phobia, so whenever he had to do a hit he sub-contracted it out to his wife Filomena. Filomena weighed 300 pounds, sang tenor in the church choir, had a moustache and wore a fedora, so she was believable as a hit man. This worked really well until she decided to clean her gun in the dishwasher. She couldn’t use it after that, so she switched to a slingshot. Slingshot victims appeared all over the place and people started calling the crime family “The Rocks in the Head Gang.” The family honor was at stake, so Herbie’s capo gave him the kiss of death and fired him. Herbie went into the Witness Protection Program and moved to Alaska, where he figured his gangster experience would be valuable in politics. The last I heard, he was Special Advisor to the Governor.
Then there was Aunt Ethel the Spanish flamenco dancer. She had a tough time. She wasn’t Spanish and she had flat feet. She was determined, though, and after years of study and hard practice she became famous. She was especially renowned for the loud noise she could make with her flat feet. But after a while she got tired of everyone calling her “Bigfoot” and had an operation on her feet. The operation was a success, but then her feet were just like everyone else’s, and the magic wasn’t there anymore. She faded out of the limelight, and, the last I heard, she was selling homemade foot cream out of the back of a Mr. Softee truck on the corner of 14th Street and 6th Avenue.
*Mostly family members ordering me to stop embarrassing them