Michael: I had an extra chuckle. There is an osteoporosis medication called Fosamax. Perhaps you have a second career as naming pharmaceuticals!
I got to know Mr. Gumpsion, Purveyor of Fine Fossimax quite well. He is the sort you’d expect who’d only made deliveries after midnight during thunderstorms. I often wanted to ask if the Gumpsions were related to the Addams, but thought that a bit forward.
The packages were actually for Mrs. G., the matriarch of the monster family upstairs. You may have met Griswold, their precious monster child before. Mrs. G. would much prefer her son had friends “of his kind,” of which there are far more than you realize. But Griswold adopted me has his friend or pet (I was never sure which), and attempts by his mother to separate us caused tantrums as only Griswold could give. Baths had a similar effect on him; but he likes playing water hose tag and sprinkler sprint in our version of the Summer Olympics.
Whatever fine fossimax was, Mrs. G. seemed embarrassed to be ordering. So, the packages come, about every few months, addressed to me, Melita, on Mockingbird Lane. Mr. Gumpsion, during the worst possible thunderstorms or thundersnows (they do exist), rings the downstairs bell, and waits on the stoop, enjoying the weather. I holler “right there,” grab his envelop, and tear down the rickety stairs. “Lovely night,” he always says. I’d nod, smile and have our exchange: envelope for package.
After wishing him an unpleasant evening, which pleases him no end, I close the door and wait for Griswold to thump, bump, jump down to get his mother’s “goodies.” I, at various times, suspect it is the extra stench she adds to her cooking to annoy me, a potion to keep Mr. G amorously inclined, or what she brushes Griswold’s fur with that makes him squealreech like broken bagpipes.
She is more generous with Griswold’s human time after a delivery, so he c0mes back down to spend the entire night, eating popcorn and watching horror movies, with the sound turned off. He finds the music scary.
Starts off as the usual stormy delivery night. Griswold dropped off the envelop. But the bell doesn’t ring until 12:42, 5 minutes late, and rings twice more be for I jerk the door open, rain pelting into the hallway. But that is NOT Mr. Gumpsion, looking miserably wet on the door step. “Father isn’t well, so I’m doing his deliveries. I’m Son.” He held out a wet hand for a shake, the box perched on his other hip. “Oh sorry. Here’s your package.” I am a bit memorized as I trade for the package. I could not picture my Gumpsion in his youth EVER looking like his son.
I could hear Griswold’s impatient stomping upstairs – it was a double bill tonight Edward Scissorhands and Ed Wood. Griswold hollered down: “Jazblue café. Night all open. Corner on. Good coffee.” Griswold playing match maker or just in a hurry for his horror popcorn theater night?
“My last delivery,” Son offers up the information.
“I’ll get two umbrellas and my ball cap and rubber boots.”
I called up to Griswold, “Remember how the microwave works, and no sound on for the movies.” I could image the joyous clapping of paws and the laughter chuck-chortling out his ears. The package and his night of freedom awaited.
Previous Melita and Griswold tales:
Written for Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie Tale Weaver 80: Mr. Gumpsion and Son, Purveyors of Fine Fossimax
© taleweavering phylor 2016