Nut Goody Sets the Record Straight

Honorable Mention, the 12th annual 'Austin Chronicle' Short Story Contest

Hey baby, want some candy? I'm holding. I'm holding it all. And I'm not talking about Snickers in the deep freeze or M&M's nestled in my hot little hands. I'm talkin' 100 Grand Idaho Spud Blue Mountain Bar Charleston Chew. I'm a Bit O' Honey, I'm Nutrageous, I'm internationally known, old-timey candy brands are my m.o. I'm chillin' in the carport, the green light filtering through the corrugated roofing just so. Got my feet up, my kicks are laced loose and fat.

I'm expecting company, even though it's true you're never alone when you've got your Raisinettes, your Goobers, when your Sugar Babies are coming over in a while. If I'm lucky, which I feel that I am, J.C. Penney might come over soon and here's hoping she don't bring that T.B. along. T.B. is for Tiny Backpack, as in tiny backpack of hate, which is a heavy load and not to my taste. Which is always for sweetness, sweetness and candy all the time, dig.

The J is for Juvenile, the C for Corruption. I'm not J.C.'s baby's daddy, but Hay Penney and I understand one another. She's cool: one-third baby, two-thirds sidekick, and one hundred percent allll right. That's her over there in the playpen, kickin' it tiny baby style.

I've noticed of late disturbances in the atmosphere, discord among the masses. Nothing big, just a lot of little stuff, like I notice Granny don't bake me cookies no more, and J.C. is always gone shopping, and correct me if I'm wrong, but I think something stinks in this carport. But Goody don't dwell: Goody just flips the tape, shakes some sugar on the situation, proceeds. After all, staying sweet is a full-time job, and wherever there is work, there is also a work ethic, and also a system of beliefs, and this is mine: age before beauty, eggs before chickens, horse then cart, sugar then spice, everything in its place. That's the Nut Goody way. All around the world people are crying out for the candies of yore, and I've got news. Have you heard the news? The good news? Nut Goody's holding. Tis chewy.

Hey now, there's Granny peeking out the screen door.

Goody, listen to me. You got to act right. Tuck that shirt in, sit up straight, be a man, watch the house. When I get back from the store I don't want to see all them candy wrappers everywhere, and I don't want to see you reclining on that nasty old couch.

Aww Granny, why you gotta talk like that, and why you gotta litter? You know I don't need no want ads. Thanks but no thanks, I'm fully occupied, plus I'm expecting company. Bye, Granny.

There goes her Buick.

Well well, here comes J.C., and judging from that spring in her step, I'm guessing she's been out purchasing some this and thats.

Penney, rock the mike.

Good afternoon, my Goody. Right now I want to give a shout out to the folks in knit separates and juniors for always being there for me. Also I want to show some appreciation to the gals in intimate apparel who always have the neatest ideas. They make me feel right at home. And what is home, anyway? Home to me is tiny rooms with big mirrors, larger rooms full of silky intimates; home is a place where you can get your most nasty nasty-time gear at reasonable prices. I'm talking about spaghetti straps, fringe all around and up and down; I'm talking about holes that show off the good parts here and over there and wayyy down there. After all, the good parts like windows on the world as much as the rest of us do. Slinkyyy.

They sure do have some nice wrappers there.

That's right, my Goody. Listen, Goody, I gotta run. I gotta get over to Lakeside Mall. Big sale over there, can't miss it. Thanks for watching li'l Penney. I'll pick you up a big-ass gumball. Love ya! Gotta escalate.

You gotta go?

I gotta go.

Aww, baby.

There goes J.C.

Now, Goody would like to point out that what you just heard was not normal. Normally, J.C. would be all talking about her apparel and getting heated up like, Mmm, I like to wear my silkies almost anywhere like on the bus or at school or at work or to traffic court but probably not to church, and yes I always like to wear them all around the house. Mmm. And then she'd be all like, Hey, you want to go inside?

And I'd say, Naw.

And then she'd say something like, Come on baby, take off those big ass shoes, I got you some penny loafers. And I would hold out a minute but then I'd be sweet and say Okay and she'd take off my kicks and then she'd forget the loafers, she'd put my feet in the baby pool and we'd both be sitting there soaking our toes for a little while like that and then she would say something like Hey baby, I got you some Dockers at the mall today, and I would ask, What color? And she'd say, tan, and I'd say, Well baby, you know I prefer chocolate. She'd say I know you do, and then she'd say, Take off those pants, let's go inside, I want you to try on these new slacks. And I'd be like, Naw, Goody don't wear tan pants and she'd be like Oh baby, they were on sale, I couldn't help myself.

And I'd say, Oh yeah, I know what you mean, and then I'd add, Hey baby, you want some candy? 'Cause you're a real Kit Kat. Come on inside, let's take a look in Granny's pantry, she's got all the old style snacks. And we'd go inside and while I tried on the Dockers she'd be talking about how much she used her charge cards today, how they hardly had time to cool down between purchases how in fact they were still warm, still hot.

Hey baby, I'd say, I got all those snacks out of the pantry but I don't see you eating anything. And she'd say I know, and the funny thing is I'm hungry. And then I'd have to say, What's the matter baby, you need help unwrapping that Whatchamacallit? And she'd say Yes and then, well, you get the idea, things would escalate, and a few minutes later she'd be shouting out for more more more of my candy.

Normally, I would not be stuck here babysitting while J.C. runs around Lakeside Mall.

And normally I would not be here in the green light of the carport soaking my toes, perusing the want ads, figuring out what stinks is brown but not chocolate, is from a baby but not cute like a baby. I'd be in a dark room all unwrapped with J.C. and she'd be relishing it and crying out for more, crying out Toffifay! Toffifay! Toffifay!

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