Episode 12 Art’s Gift For Mother Phyllis’ Lesson Part 3
AS Art and his dad walked toward the sounds Phyllis was making they spotted her running, jumping, spinning, and crying on her way toward the house. Hank called to her, “Come over here, don’t you dare go in the house.” Phyllis altered her direction slightly and headed straight for her dad sobbing, gagging, and sputtering about “the stinking skunk”. As she approached her father she flung her arms out as though she would have embraced him. Her father however had no desire to share her dilemma, he put one big hand on her forehead and kept her at arm’s length and said “Hold on there Stinky.” With that Art’s dad had provided a nick name for Phyllis that would hunt her through out her life. Art held his nose and backed away, but it did not reduce the unpleasantness a bit.
Hank said to Art, “Go get your mother and tell her I need an old bath towel.” Art obeyed and in a minute his mother appeared with an old checkered tablecloth that was worn through in several places. Without a word Art’s mother and dad made a dressing room out of the tablecloth, like sometimes they did at the beach so the children could get out of their wet suits before the ride home. Hank said, “Stinky P get out of those clothes, sneakers too.” To Art he said, “Go get a shovel.” Art headed for the shed glad to be headed away from the present source of the smell. He marveled at how powerful and penetrating the foul odor was, it seemed to be everywhere in varying strengths. By the time Art returned with the shovel “Stinky P.” was standing wrapped in the tablecloth with pile of smelly clothes on the ground beside her. She was so pitiful looking even Art was moved to tenderness. She was sobbing, broken-hearted more over the skunk’s betrayal of her trust, and the dashing of her imagined friendship, then the utter embarrassment of standing there in the drive way in a ripped old tablecloth. She adjusted the table cloth unconsciously to move the larger hole to a less important spots.
Her mother and father were planning the next several moves. As they spoke there was the loud blast of a car’s horn in the driveway.