Read Katy Kelly_Lucy Rose 04 Online

Authors: Lucy Rose: Working Myself to Pieces,Bits

Tags: #Washington (D.C.), #Social Issues, #Family, #Diaries, #Juvenile Fiction, #Family Life, #Girls & Women, #People & Places, #General, #United States, #Washington (D.C), #Family & Relationships, #Marriage & Divorce, #Bakeries, #Interpersonal Relations, #Children's Stories, #Death; Grief; Bereavement, #Families, #Death & Dying

Katy Kelly_Lucy Rose 04 (2 page)

BOOK: Katy Kelly_Lucy Rose 04
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Jonique is the smartest cookie I know.

January 5

The McBees' house is usually a D-double-D-lightful place but lately they're having stress because the builder named Mr. Nathaniel had a delay because he should have started his job last week but didn't and, according to Mr. McBee, time is money. I don't actually get that because I have a lot of time and not so much money.

There's not 1 thing anybody can do about that delay because Mr. Nathaniel is IN DEMAND on account of he used to work for a company that made a Marriott from scratch.

Luckily enough, Mrs. McBee is having patience for waiting and loyalty for Mr. Nathaniel. “I was good friends with his late grandmother,” she told us.

“Probally lateness runs in their family,” I said.

It turns out that the grandmother's called late because she's dead.

“They should call that permanently late,” I said. “So people can tell the difference.”

January 6

My dad called and had a chat with my mom. I'm pretty sure it was about me because I'm their main topic.

Then my dad and I had our own talk about me and I told him, “Today was back-to-school.”

“I go back tomorrow,” he said.

“Even though it was the freezingest walk ever, I was stuffed with happiness to be back in Room 7,” I said. “We got to go in early because of it being 32 degrees or under and Mrs. Timony was visiting Mrs. Mathur's room so there was extra added wildness.”

“Really?” my dad said. That was a joke because when you're a junior high teacher you know wildness.

“Hannah was telling about going to England to see her mum's mum, which is English for her grandmother,” I said. “Kathleen was showing her shoes that her Grandma Mary got from the outlet mall in New Jersey and Sam was balancing on Mrs. Timony's rolling chair and telling Amir, ‘I got a chemistry set for Hanukkah and Melonhead and I are going to make potions and they might be the exploding kind.'

“Amir said, ‘Fantastic,' to that,” I said. “Last year he didn't know English. This year he knows exploding and potion. I told him: ‘Amir, next year you will most likely be a genius.'”

“It sounds like it,” my dad said.

“You can't guess what happened next,” I said.

“Try me,” he said and I did.

“Marisol, who's usually the quietest, told everybody, ‘My Tía Angelina rode on a Greyhound all the way from Uvalde, Texas, to Washington, D.C.,' and Melonhead shouted out, ‘I LOVE those dogs!' But Marisol said, ‘This Greyhound was a bus. It had a built-in bathroom and movies on the ceiling.' Then Melonhead said, ‘It would be a lot better if your aunt came by dog.'”

“Probably not for the dog,” my dad said.

Then he asked me, “How was Ashley?”

She's that absolute pest of a girl.

“Actually, she was nice enough to ask me, ‘What did you get for Christmas, Lucy Rose?'” I said.

“Her manners are improving,” my dad said. “What did you say?”

“Nothing because the bell rang and Mrs. Timony came in and said, ‘Let's start the new year off on the right foot,' which made Melonhead yell, ‘I'm left-footed!' and go wild with his hooting,” I said.

“Of course he did,” my dad said.

“His hoots caused Bart Bigelow to make rude noises, which is a thing he loves to do anytime,” I said. “Mrs. Timony had to give them pointy looks.”

January 7

Ashley got behind me and Jonique at morning lineup and said, “You didn't tell me what you got.”

She said it in a friendly voice that made me think she might have a new year's resolution about her attitude, so I did the encouraging thing and made a smile. And, since Madam says it's not thoughtful to talk about belongings in front of people, I said, “Gifts.”

“Like what?” Ashley asked.

“Good stuff,” I said.

“If it's so good why don't you say what it is?” Ashley said, and her voice had some snark in it.

I made my shoulders go shruggy.

“Because your gifts were stupid,” Ashley said.

That made me bursting mad and my hands automatically went on my hips and I said, “For your information, I got ice skates and markers and 4 books and the original Broadway cast recording from
Hairspray
. Plus I got professional hair gel that's kiwi smelling and a pink and orange bulletin board that Madam and my mom made themselves with red ribbons on it and my dad wrote me a poem and gave me a sweater and these pink jeans that I'm wearing and this new yellow bandana because my old one got faded. PLUS my Aunt Pansy gave me paints and I got a cooking lesson from my Uncle Mike and Aunt Max and now I know how to make a whole, complete dinner out of chicken and artichokes, which I am sure you DO NOT. Also I got stick-on earrings and a genuine parasol that was made in the country of Japan out of paper and sticks.”

“I TOLD you she got hardly anything,” Ashley said so loud that the whole class could hear.

Marisol's voice came out whispering. “It's a
LOT
to me,” she said.

“Trust me, it's NOT,” Ashley said and she made her eyeballs roll around in their sockets like they were loose. “It's dumb junk that NObody would like. Who thinks cooking artichokes is a present? Who wants a bulletin board that's not from a store? Stick-on earrings are for LOSERS.”

The ultra-sickening part was that Jonique heard that insult and she was the giver of the stick-ons, which I say shows her caring, because I've been utterly desperate to get pierced ears ever since I was 8 and I'm not allowed until I'm in the double digits, at least.

Then Ashley started bragging her blond head off. “I got REAL earrings made of REAL GOLD and OPALS which, by the way, are PRECIOUS GEMS. I also got a Spin Art machine and 7 movies and a CAMERA and a GIFT CARD and these BOOTS that are REAL SUEDE and a charm bracelet and a purse and an ELECTRIC GUITAR and 6 OUTFITS and a skateboard and a TV FOR MY ROOM.”

I could not believe about the TV.

I looked to see if Marisol could believe but I think her mind was feeling stunned because her mouth was stuck open and her eyes looked like they were dejected. That was the exact second I figured out that Madam's rule is a good one because I could tell that all the showing off made Marisol feel puny and that made me feel puny for doing it.

“Wow,” I said so Ashley would be quiet.

Ashley made a smirk at me. Then she looked at everybody looking at her and said, “My dad took me to Hawaii and I saw palm trees and surfers and hotels and everything.”

That's when Mrs. Timony came up and said, “Aloha, Ashley! Aloha, class! Let's find our indoor voices and go inside.”

January 9

When Melonhead looked inside Mr. Nathaniel's van that's jammed to its brims with tools, he had to do his King Tut strut all over the sidewalk, even though anybody could tell Mr. Nathaniel is not the strutting type.

Also, he's not the cheerful type because after he frowned all over the store, he looked at Mrs. McBee and said, “No, you didn't.”

He meant buy it.

“Yes, they certainly did,” Jonique said.

Mr. Nathaniel climbed up the ladder and jammed his fingers at a ceiling square and said, “You got a leak.”

“Can I see it?” Melonhead asked him.

“Boy, you better get off that ladder,” Mr. Nathaniel told him.

Then he knocked on the ugly wood walls and made a scrape on the plaster wall with a screwdriver, which made dust puffs get on me because I was standing next to him in case he needed an assistant, which he didn't because Melonhead was hogging that job.

After he finished checking, Mr. Nathaniel told Mrs. McBee, “Let me fool around with some numbers.”

I have no earthly idea how number fooling is supposed to help.

January 10

Jonique and I opened the store door and I had to holler, “Yippee-yi-yo, cowgirl! The must is gone!”

“You can tell the difference?” Mrs. McBee asked.

“Can I ever!” I said. “Pine-Sol is one of my Numero Uno best smells.”

“Wait until cakes are cooking,” Jonique said and she made a smile like she was feeling dreamy.

“I'm glad you have faith in us,” Aunt Frankie said.

“Everybody does,” I said.

“Amen to that,” Mr. McBee said.

He did not smell 1 speck like Pine-Sol, but I didn't say that because Madam says a person's smell is a topic that never gets mentioned by polite people, which I am a lot of the time and she is all the time.

Mr. McBee wiped his head sweat on his shirt and said, “I hauled the old pipes to the dump, Lola. But I left the copper pipes in the cellar, in case the plumber can put them to use.”

Lola is the same as Mrs. McBee.

“I married a good man,” she said and hugged his middle.

“Hardworking, too,” Aunt Frankie said.

“This was an easy day,” Mr. McBee said. “Tomorrow I'm going downtown to apply for building permits.”

That's when the city permits you to do things and according to Mr. Nathaniel, that chore could make a person feel exasperated to death.

January 11

Everybody would love to be Jonique and me today on account of our friend that's named Mrs. Zuckerman asked us, “Why don't you girls call your mothers and see if it's okay to stay for supper?”

“At the Retirement Home?” Jonique asked.

“We are dazzled to bits by that invitation,” I said.

“Really?” Mrs. Zuckerman said.

“It's been one of our dreams to eat here,” I said. “That dining room looks like it's a divine restaurant.”

“And they have butter squares that are wrapped in golden foil,” Jonique said.

When we sat down, Mrs. Zuckerman told the server, “The girls and I will have Chicken à la King.”

Then she told us, “The meat loaf disagrees with me.”

“I disagree with YOU,” Mrs. Hennessy said.

Mrs. Zuckerman didn't say anything, which I say shows her maturity because even though we are wild for Mrs. Hennessy, I believe Mrs. Zuckerman is not.

Mr. Woods, who has manners galore, gave Mrs. Hennessy his lemon Jell-O square with peach specks stuck to the inside.

“Thank you, my spicy friend,” Mrs. Hennessy said.

“It's my pleasure, Flora,” Mr. Woods said.

Mrs. Hennessy used to have a better way with her words.

P.S. I wish I was a King because I am crazy about Chicken à la.

January 12

While we were at school, Mr. Nathaniel was at the plumbing store patching up the roof leak because, even though the snow melted, he says we're bound to get more weather.

That remark is not at all sensible but I didn't say so because I did not want to make him feel testy with me.

On the inside, the Divas went wild pulling up the floor that's made of brown linoleum with reddish streaks and not the interesting kind of streaks, either. I know because Mrs. McBee told Madam, “That pattern is Hideous.”

I would never buy a pattern named Hideous but probably the plumbers got it for a bargain.

The floor under Hideous is definitely not. It's made of black and white tiles that have 6 sides and are as big as a nickel and connected in a pattern that's mostly white with some black daisy shapes. Around the edges are puny square tiles that look like they're braided but aren't. They're mosaic.

“This floor is famous!” I said. “They have one like it at the Smithsonian museum.”

Mrs. McBee said, “I don't think it's valuable but I do think it's beautiful.”

It wasn't at first because the plumbers used globs of black glue to stick on the Hideous and the Divas had to scrub it off with chemicals.

Now Mrs. McBee's nails are ruined forever.

January 13

On our afternoon walk to the S.E. Neighborhood Library I told my mom, “In 3 ways Ashley is lucky.”

“Name them,” my mom said.

“1. TV in her room. 2. Pierced ears. 3. Her dad lives in Maryland so she can visit anytime,” I said.

“I wish Ann Arbor were just a Metro ride away,” my mom said.

“I wish it too,” I said. “I miss Daddy.”

“Of course you do,” my mom said.

Then I changed to a new subject because my mom is the kind who utterly loves to consider people's inside feelings.

January 14

I called my dad the minute I got home and I told him, “At recess Ashley came right up to me and shrieked her head off, ‘A poem is NOT a present, you know.'”

“Well, I'll show her,” my dad said.

“What are you going to do?” I asked him.

“Write more poetry, of course,” he said.

About 32 or more minutes later I got this from e-mail:

“From her nose to her toes, I love Lucy Rose.

From her bandana to her banana

From her cute suits to her red boots

BOOK: Katy Kelly_Lucy Rose 04
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