MONEY IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL
Gentle Reader, it is me, Auntie Carol and I have a most shameful taie to relate to you, tale of debauchery and capitalism, our game of Monopoly this last Saturday Night. We declared an “All Girl’s Night” and kicked our husbands out of the house for the night. Absolutely, no testosterone allowed. Monopoly is the ultimate game of capitalism. All about accruing property and wealth. The fact of the matter is Lady Lynda was gloating over her winnings like a vulture on a dead antelope. It was making me all wroth, and I was doing my best to hide it.
Lady Lynda, with a magnanimous swipe of her hand, said, “Well, go ahead, doll, time’s a wasting, Heaven knows you could use some luck,” and she hummed “Luck Be a Lady tonight.” This really “frosted” me.
I snapped that I had all the luck in the world and it was a wonder if she weren’t in league with the devil as nobody was ever that lucky. Remember the legend of Robert Johnson In “Crossroads.” He supposedly sold his soul to the devil to get the talent to become famous. I drew the “Get Out of Jail “card after the double failure to roll doubles, twice in a row. “Free. Free at last, “ to quote the venerable Martin Luther King. Why does Monopoly bring out the worst in everybody, the lowest possible common denominator in people. I hated that smug , know-it-all look on Lady Lynda’s face like she invented the polio vaccine and saved millions. Let me wash it off her face with turpentine. Oh, I am loath to tell you what transpired. It turned out that I landed on Park Place where Lynda had four houses or a hotel and had to spend $200.00 of my remaining five, leaving a meager three hundred dollars in which to navigate the board. Oh yes, her icon was a rhythm quitar and mine were a pair of tiny, silver slippers to trip the light fantastic.
Oh how I longed to wipe that beautific, self satisfied look off her face with, I deign to say, a hatchet. Money doth make bitches of us all. I have neve seen such a dramatic flourish as she accepted my tribute. It was very like the late Queen Elizabeth waving her gloved hand at the hoi polloi. I thought let me throw her off her game, this intense and florid concentration to detail so I asked her the Question of the Ages, “What is the meaning of life. Oh, wait let me eat some cheese and crackers.” I went over to the banquet table and loaded up on the goodies, water cress on white bread, pate de foix gras, chocolate and vanilla petit fours, Brie with strawberries and pieces of Godiva chocolate. I also, hit the bottle, so to speak, Sambucca liquer with hot French roast, and I took a Godiva chocolate bar and made Lady Lynda a plate just like mine. Drink lessens judgment and so I put a great deal of Sambucca in her tea cup after giving my silver coffee urn and creamer a loving glance. Right out of a Cary Grant movie, I thought, “ I am not proud of my actions’. Clearly this was not my finest hour.
I yearned, I perspired, I watched her ever y moment for a “tell” Like scratching her ear lobe or the tapping of fingers on the card table. A big nothing. She had no tells, and began to talk. ‘Life has no inherent meaning. It is whom we love that gives us meaning. Loving is all important.” This is what Lynda espoused. I was more in a Sartre vein, “Life is absurd.” That old curmudgeon. A truly vile man.
“On, no,” replied Lynda. “Life is real: life is earnest. Accept God’s bounty. He watches over you like a little lost lamb. We are His children.’’. I was so ashamed for at just that moment I wished she would become bilious. I was a s charitable as a shark in bloody waters. Yet I was the one with the shivers and shaking, sweaty hands.
‘I’m sorry I guess I’m just peeved that you got all the luck. I feel dumped upon.” I said. “You even got Atlantic Avenue, my favorite place and one which I always have,” I said.
Then she uttered the most injurious thing. “Luck had nothing to do with it. I am just highly skilled. It’s just capitalism at its best. My favorite card is the Banker, the little man in tux and top hat sporting a cane. He’s adorable. This game is about being good at life. Surviving. “Dear, you’re as pale as a cloud, are you unwell,’ she asked. “Perhaps I should fetch you a nice glass of cold water. You look like you’re about to have a stroke.”
”Those words completely unhinged me so I went over and got the pate and plastered it to Lady Lynda’s face and said ,”Take that you pompous old hag, And I used the words, “Yo, Homie, Yo’ Mama,” as the young black students used to say at Dr. Pequot’s School for Dastardly Bastards where we used to teach.
Lady Lynda then go her ire up and said, “Don’t you talk about my mother, She was a saint. A saint, you hear me.” An she went over to the banquet table got the petit fors and pressed them into my hair, one by one. Then we came to fisticuffs. Lady Lynda was just so shocked her mouth fell open and though she was accosting me, completely dumfounded was she.
Our husbands broke up the fight and were quite amused at out little tiff. You know how men like “cat fights.” We were tangled up on the floor in an unholy union and I had clumps of Lynda’s extentions in my hands and I felt so stupid. I thought that glorious bronze mane was her own. Pieces of her scalp showed like broken sea shells. Looking at each other we were suddenly aware of the hilarity of our situation, and we began to laugh uproariously. Herman asked what all of this meant, muttering under his breath, “And you call yourselves ladies,”
We laughed even harder. Lady Lynda, Held up the “Banker” card and said it was a true demonstration of capitalism and I murmured that “Money is the root of all evil”. And Herman said, “Or the lack thereof.”