Ice Cream

“Slow down or you’ll break your neck,” the mother yells after her child. She is trying her best to keep up even though the heat of this typical July day and her not being twenty-four anymore are seriously working against her.

        The eager eight-year-old runs after the ice cream truck at full speed, shoe laces untied. His brown floppy hair, in desperate need of a haircut, is bouncing around in sync with his feet hitting the pavement.  

        “Gerald; slow down!”

        “But it’s getting away!”

        “Is ice cream really that important?”

        “Mother,” says the eight year old stopping and turning to face his mother, speaking with a tone that sounded beyond his years, “ice cream is everything.”

        The mother rolls her eyes and slows her pace as the boy takes off towards the truck which has finally noticed the boy and is waiting at the corner ahead of him.

        The boy approaches the window, ogling at the pictures of all the glorious types of ice cream stuck to the side of the truck. The boy thinks there must be at least three hundred different kinds. The ice cream man in a clean white suit and hat appears smiling in the window.

        “Why hello there son, what will it be?”

        “Uhm,” the boy hesitates, unsure of which delicious treat to purchase with the crumpled five dollar bill in his hand; he never was good with decisions.

        “Why don’t you come in and pick from here,” offers the friendly ice cream man, “then you can see what kind you want.”

        The boy glances at his mother. She is a good thirty feet away talking to a neighbor that has walked by. He can see her head of blond curly hair nodding up and down as the neighbor talks.

Deciding that his mother really wouldn’t mind, the boy looks at the smiling man in the truck and nods his head.

        The man in the white suit opens the door and the boy climbs inside.

        A minute later the mother glances over at the spot where her son and the ice cream truck had been. But nothing is there except an untied shoe on the sidewalk.

        The mother shrieks and falls to her knees sobbing. She feels as if her whole world has just disappeared – no – it has disappeared.  Her whole life vanished over something as trivial as ice cream.

        Not a second later there is a tap on the grieving woman’s shoulder.

 She turns around to see her son smiling, missing a shoe and waving two ice creams at his sobbing mother.

        “Mommy, you didn’t think I wouldn’t get you an ice cream too?” the boy asks, innocently offering his mother a popsicle in the shape of a deformed Powerpuff Girl while he licks one that looked like the Not-So-Incredible-Hulk on a bad day.

        The woman only pulls her son into a hug and says, “Oh Gerald, ice cream isn’t everything.”






The End

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