Sunday, December 23, 2012

Waiting for Santa

Remember when we were kids, how exciting it was to wait for Santa? Seeing Santa in the store, sitting on his lap, tugging his beard, and telling him what we wanted? And then, out of nowhere, some kid on the playground had the nerve to tell us the truth. “You mean you still believe in Santa?” HAHAHAHA.
            I can still hear that boy sitting on the teeter-totter laughing and pointing at me, when spoiler alert, “Fatty still believes in Santa Claus!” No offense or anything, but that boy didn’t turn out so well. Most bullies don’t.
            I acted like I’d known all along. Like, sure, what stupid idiot still believed in Santa? And then I went behind a tree and cried. Somehow, Christmas wasn’t the same after that. I didn’t get quite as excited when the weatherman gave the Santa report and the sleigh moved across the TV screen, indicating that Santa was on the job, wondering if my house was next.
            Just this morning when Brad announced from the pulpit that he saw the reindeer pulling Santa in his sleigh, I studied the congregation. They smiled but had that look of those who know the truth. Charley, on the other hand, bounced up and down, grinned wide and rose out of his seat just enough to look over the pew, at the base of the tree, looking for presents.
            Maybe it should, but it doesn’t embarrass me one bit. I love that he is a man, yet can’t contain his excitement. And I wouldn’t demand that he be anything but who he is.
It’s Charley who gets us in the Christmas spirit at our house. Each year Charley comes to the living room several times during the season to ask, “Mom, Dad, Santa comin’?”
And just tonight he ran out onto the lawn looking for the reindeer in the sky.
       He still believes. Or, at least he wants us to think he believes. Charley’s no dummy though. He figured it out the year Brad played Santa at church. While the other kids all watched, Charley followed Santa around the sanctuary yelling, “Daddy, what you doin’ in dat Santa soup?” And then he’d point and say, “Dat my Dad in dere!”
Perhaps it’s his gift of Down syndrome that allows him to know the truth while refusing to compromise his right to the magic of Christmas. He may be the kid on Christmas morning, but after the hoopla, he always hugs us and says, “Kanks, guys.”
            Still, before the big day when someone asks what Santa’s bringing him for Christmas, he knows exactly what he wants and gets that wide-eyed wonder look. “I getting new TV, CD player, DVD player, ipad, computer…” 
And they look at us, like, “What the…?”
            That’s where we chime in. “He has a great sense of humor doesn’t he?” And then we assure them we haven’t won the lottery. Well, at least not yet.
            But then it occurs to me. Maybe we have won. We have a twenty-two year old who makes every day seem like Christmas. Because he believes. Because he loves unconditionally. Because he never gets too old to love life.
            So what is it that you want? Whatever it is, I hope all your wishes come true.
What do I want for Christmas? The same thing I’ve gotten every year. I’ve gotten a two hundred pound teddy bear with a heartbeat. I’ve gotten to see Christmas through his eyes. The crescent moon shaped eyes of Down syndrome innocence.
And you can’t ask for more than that.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Shine, Little Lights

         This is Charley about the age of the children who lost their lives in Newtown. He may be twenty-two now but sometimes his Down syndrome allows him to still be that little boy anticipating Christmas. Innocent, full of joy, waiting for Santa.
            Charley was a funny little thing, always easy to shop for. While other children were asking for the latest toys, Charley wanted flashlights. It didn’t matter what kind, either. Lanterns, pocket flashlights, spotlights with handles, rotating lights, toys that lit up, globe lights spinning around, and oh, if it had a siren or made noise?  All the better. And every year, the Christmas list was the same – “Batawees.” Still, he had trouble keeping the battery from failing.
Time after time I explained that if he kept the light on all night it would eventually burn out. But Charley is uncomfortable with darkness. So the flashlight stays on.
And that goes for Christmas lights. He doesn’t understand why they can’t stay on all night.
It wasn’t until he was about eight that he began to make the connection between twinkling lights and Christmas. As Charley’s gotten older he’s taken on the job of turning on our lights. It’s part of the Christmas spirit.
Only, this year there’s a damper on Christmas. At first I thought it was the stampedes we all witnessed via TV on black Friday (or was it black Thanksgiving night?), where people pushed and shoved trampling other shoppers in pursuit of the latest electronic whateveritwas that they just had to have. Forget the other guy, just get the thing.
But I was wrong. Seeing grown-ups act like children wasn’t the damper. Seeing children blown away? That’s the damper. That’s the unthinkable. The unbearable.
            This week the community of Newtown came together for a memorial service as the country looked on. The media kept showing pictures of the shrine outside. Who knows how many candles there were? Symbols that the tiny lights we lost this past week will continue to burn.
            Charley didn’t watch the program. I didn’t want him to. Instead, he went to a Christmas service with one of his teachers. By the time he returned home, it was getting late and we had already turned out the Christmas lights.
            Downs does not mean dumb. He knew something was wrong. He saw his Dad cry. He saw his Mom put her face in her hands. He knows sadness when he sees it.
            “You okay, Daddy?” he said and then looked at me. “Mom?”
            “We’re okay as long as we have you,” Brad said, and hugged him tight. The three of us huddled on the couch until Charley realized the lights were out. “Hey!” he said, and sprang to his feet.
            “We don’t need Christmas lights at this time of night,” Brad said.
            “Uh huh, Daddy,” Charley said, and turned on every last light. “See? Kimass!”
            As I sat there watching him I couldn’t help thinking that in some of my darkest moments Charley’s been my light.
            My hope is that the families who have suffered unspeakable loss will know that this is a time of darkness for all who cry with them. It’s Christmas. Not a time to grab gifts and shove our way through the crowd, but a time to hug our loved ones, assure them that they are loved, and a time to remember the tiny lights that call us out of ourselves and show us the way.
It’s dark. But in our darkness, and if there be purpose, so let their little lights shine.

Monday, December 17, 2012

In the Advent of a Hootenanny

     Sometimes it must be hard to be Charley. Wanting to fit in. Sitting on the fence of different and same. If he stays on the side of different, the way is cleared for him to be a twenty-two year old boy in a man’s body, refusing to take a shower. If he stays on the side of sameness, wanting to be like everyone else, then what we have is a man in a man’s body, expected to take the shower like a man.
         What we forget is that his Down syndrome is the gateway to rising to the next level. The person who sat in the back seat asking, “Where goin’ Daddy?” is the same person who went with us to the Camp and Conference center for an Advent dinner Friday evening. He didn’t want to go. Not for one moment did he want to put on a suit coat, and hang out with us old fogies. Typical.
            From the moment we arrived, he tried his best to mingle. Those of us who live with Down syndrome know only too well how the tangled tongue gets in the way of casual conversation, so he stood with chatting people, trying to act like them, until he couldn’t stand it. “I got me wawet,” he blurted. But try as they might, they had no idea what he was saying, and quizzed him until he finally pulled out his wallet only to show them a picture of Harry, from Harry and the Henderson’s.
            So much for mixing. He plopped onto the couch and slumped into the cushions. I walked over to see if he was okay. “Dis bo-wing,” he said.  And why wouldn’t he be bored? The people at the party didn’t speak CharleyEase, which made him odd man out. Meanwhile, I felt a lump in my throat and visited with other partygoers, while watching him out of the corner of my eye. Poor guy. Poor him. Poor man who wants to fit in.
            “He’s doing well,” someone said. “You aren’t kidding,” I said, because right about then in walked a blonde girl (we’ll call her Girl #1), and she was what Charley would call, “Hot.” And just like that, he had a date. Well, he had a dance. The music duo played their guitar and fiddle. Hootenanny, anyone?
            He thanked Girl #1 for the dance, and in my watchful silence I thanked her too, for saving an evening that had the potential to crush my son under the weight of the knowledge that he was and always will be Downs and that there’s not a thing he can do bout that.
Still, Girl #1 put a smile on his lips, and just as we thought that was that, in walked Girl #2, a brunette, who accepted his invitation to dance.
The next time I looked, he was dining at Girl #2’s table, following her to the buffet, helping himself to an iced tea he had no intention of drinking, and glaring at me like I’d better stop watching him or else. I tried not to look. I did. But what kind of mother would I be if I didn’t give him a dirty look when he used his sleeve as a napkin?
            Meanwhile, Girl #2 spent the rest of the evening with him, and Charley was no longer odd man, he was simply a man.
Because different or same, when you have Downs it doesn’t matter which side of the fence you’re on, as long as the girl’s on your side.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Season's Ringings

Seasons Ringings

T’was the day of Black Friday and all through the town, the ringers were ringing, that holiday sound…

We see them every year, the bell ringers, the freezing few who stand outside the stores, reminding us shoppers that there are those in our communities who need our help.

When Charley was younger he’d try to talk the ringers out of their bells. “I me one,” he’d say, and Brad would give him a dollar to put in the bucket and then we’d be off on our way to celebrate the season.

He’s twenty-two now, and he still wants the bell. Every year he says, “I have it?” as he puts his dollar in the bucket.

So. Brad decided this year would be different. This year, Charley would get the bell. At least for a little while.
“Where goin’ Dad?”

“We’re ringing the bells,” Brad said.


“Because there are people whose needs will go unmet if we don’t. People are hungry, cold, and lonely. Bell ringing provides food and shelter. Unfortunately, there’s not much we can do about the loneliness.”


“Yeah, Charley, there are lots of people who have no one to share their lives and that makes them lonely. We have to reach out to them.”

“Okay, Dad,” Charley said, as he put on his red apron and picked up a bell.

Ring, ring. Ring-a-ding dingy. The two men in my life set out to keep people from being cold and hungry.

Now, if I recall from years past, the ringers stand still, and their arms go up and down, ringing. But at no time do I remember the ringer dancing and singing, but where tradition ends, Charley begins, and new traditions are born.

Dancing, ringing, singing, and informing everyone on their way into the store, “Need money here,” pointing to the bucket, doing the happy dance. That’s the Charleyway.

Into the bucket went a dollar.

“Kanku,” Charley said. “Oh sir, money pwease.”  Plunk, another dollar.

One poor woman was heading into the store.

“Hello, Maam, you got money?”

“I’ve already given several times,” she said.

“Again!” he said. “Money fo da po, over here.”

Into her purse went her hand, and yep, out came a dollar.

Shopper after shopper, the teenage girls got a handshake or a hug (no one’s lonely on Charley’s corner). Even the kids gave him money. “Call me,” he’d say as they slapped him a high-five. Unless they didn’t give. Then he’d clear his throat and say, “Uh-hem. S’cuuuuse me, you got money?”

Brad told Charley that soliciting was one thing, hounding was another. “You are NOT to embarrass people into giving,” he said.

“I no bawassacud, Daddy. I winging da bell, dey got dollars.”

“But you’re not supposed to chase people down the sidewalk, Son…and you are NOT to hit them up twice.” The thing is, Charley would collect a dollar on their way into the store, and then talk them out of another on their way out.  One man admitted to stopping at the ATM because he didn’t want to come face to face with Charley. Not unless the happy dance followed.

Maybe it’s his Down syndrome innocence that opens the hearts around him. I don’t know. But I do know this; sometimes it takes a special needs person to remind you that if you are going to give, give with your whole body.

If you are going to ring, make sure the bell is heard.

And if you venture out this season, do it with a dollar in your pocket.

You never know where Charley might be lurking. I mean ringing.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Pappy Turkadee

Yesterday Brad and Charley went shopping for our Thanksgiving dinner. I could have gone, but I have more sense than to get between the two of them in a store. Somewhere in the midst of their shopping spree, Brad’s phone rang, and he turned his back to answer it.

You know those phones that will time out on you, or loose your connection when you are in a building? Yep, that best describes our phones. So, we walk around waving the phone in the air until we get an extra bar that means we might just keep the connection, please, just a minute more. Brad did that. He waved, and talked, and waved, and then the phone call was over.

He turned back around to Charley, and good luck with that, because Charley was gone. Proof that some people are not as thrilled that you’ve gotten a call, which can be interpreted as “Let the marathon begin.”

Meanwhile, Brad set out on his own marathon to find Charley, canvassing the store, yelling his name. Looking, searching, around this corner, around that. But Charley was nowhere to be found. Panic set in and he called me. “I can’t find Charley,” he said.

“Keep looking,” I said.

Sure enough, when he caught up with him, Charley had a basket overflowing with items we never use.

“I done, Dad,” he said.

Well, not exactly. He’d forgotten the potatoes, the green beans, and the cherry pie.

Brad looked through the basket. “Where’s the turkey?”

“I want kicken bones,” Charley said.

“We are NOT having Kentucky Fried Chicken, Son.”

“Yes I are, Daddy.”

“What’s all this stuff?” Brad said.

“I helpin’ you, Dad.”

He sure did. He helped fill the cart with shrimp (keep em’). Oysters (Put em’ back). Cherries, chips, (or “ships,” as Charley calls them), fried fish sticks ala Mrs. Paul’s, sardines (no thank you), a variety of cereals, pot-pies, bleach, you name it, it was there. Even the celery and the onions (keep em’). Later we learned that he’d participated in cooking Thanksgiving dinner as a class project for school, and that his part was to help make the stuffing.

Brad and Charley arrived home with the goods. Charley was proud of himself for his excursion, and on the way in the door, he put his arms around our necks. “Gwoop hug,” he said, “Misgibbing.”

Brad and I hugged him and exchanged glances over his head. “What?” It’s the look we give each other when we aren’t sure what he’s tying to say. “Say it again, Son,” Brad said.



Speaking CharleyEase is a way of life in our house, but I have to admit, he had us stumped.

“Pappy Turkadee,” he said to Brad.


“Yeah. Misgibbing.”

Oh. I get it. Happy Thanksgiving.

And when we look at his face, how could we celebrate anything else?

From the Palmer family, and in CharleyEase, Pappy Turkadee everyone!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Voting Matters

Charley took this picture
of himself with my iPad - pre-shave, of course

It’s election night. I’m writing this half-asleep, which explains the typos. And I’d fix them for you, but well, it’s election night.

In our house the word “election” is synonymous with “up all night.” This means the TV stays on twenty-four hours while the votes come in and the states are announced. 

And even when it’s over and the electoral votes are counted, we still stay up because it’s not over. Surely there will be a miscount. Surely we didn’t hear it right. Surely there’s more to come. It means someone better have remembered to buy popcorn because it’s going to be a long night. It means we root for our pick. 

Brad and I don’t always agree on “our pick.”  Sometimes we cancel out each other’s votes, although I’m the only one who knows when this happens. Brad is a party-voter. I’m for the man whoever that happens to be. 

I never tell Brad who I vote for, because not only would it take the fun out of the election for me, but because sometimes fessing up causes a reaction from Brad where shoes start to fly in the direction of the TV, but at least he has yet to throw the cat, and you can’t buy entertainment like that.

Brad looks forward to election night. And why not? He’s spent the last year in bed with the commentators. In bed? Yes, I did say that. With Rachel Maddow. With Chris Matthews. When there’s an election coming up he stays up night after night in the living room, glued to the TV until he falls asleep with the clicker in his hand. 

I usually leave him alone. That way the snore drowns out the roar of the commentators who talk over each other and shout into the camera as if anyone can hear a thing they say. Chris Matthews is the primary culprit of whom I speak. I like Chris but my eardrums don’t, which makes me sorry to say that ear wax can actually be a good thing.

Somewhere along the line I end up dragging my fanny to the living room and nudging Brad and ordering him to bed (It's a sad day indeed, when reality hits that you have to order someone to bed), until he eventually comes into the bedroom where it would appear there’s enough of the night left to get some serious zzz’s, but this lasts 30 seconds or so until he turns the TV on and he gets his second wind and you can kiss the sand man goodbye.

So I watch the returns and try to learn as much as I can about swing states and electoral votes until it’s inevitable that the voice of Chris Matthews is the insomnia filibuster making it mandatory for me to sneak off to the work room where I can type on my computer which is what I am doing now. 

I’m hiding from the noise and the potential meltdown if my husband’s candidate doesn’t win which means it will be All over but the shoutin’ as Rick Bragg says.

All these years I’ve told myself that at least I have Charley. He’s on my side. He doesn’t scream and holler at the TV. After all, he’s a Beauty and the Beast buff. A Cher fan. A John Travolta grease monkey. Election night means Charley and I watch Free Willy

Until tonight. Tonight he has defected to the other side.

What does Charley know of politics? Quite a lot, actually. He knows that voting matters. And this means he matters.

He knows who his pick is. He knows he’s voting for Obama because he listens to Rush Limbaugh every day on the radio. When Rush dishes on Obama, and he does this a lot, Charley thinks he’s listening to Obama.

“See? Bama,” he says, “Dat guy said so.”

He knows that voting is such a big deal that it requires him to have a picture I.D. card. This involved getting an original notarized birth certificate, two pieces of mail to present with his current address, a trip to the Dr. to obtain a document that states that he has Down syndrome as if you can’t tell by looking at his face, a copy of his social security card, and a trip to the Department of Motor Vehicles and Homeland Security to have his picture taken. 

But first, a trip to the barber shop because the beard and the muscle shirt had to go.

The privilege of having a picture I.D. is a right of passage, and the right to have an I.D. meant Bye Bye Beardie, Hello Mr. Clean.

The right to vote means standing in line while holding his tote bag full of CDs with his headphones on, and waiting his turn with the rest of the voters and knowing that for this one moment, he is one of them. He gets to be in their club.

We early-bird voted because Brad and I couldn’t envision Charley waiting for hours just to 
push a button.

I can't help thinking though, that voting is a remarkable thing because its one of the occasions when we are all on equal ground. And I couldn't help being reminded of all the times when Charley hasn't had a say.

He didn't get to vote on whether or not he would have Down syndrome.

He didn't get to vote on all the times he's wanted to date some girl who might have dated him if only he wasn't different.

And what about the kids in the neighborhood who wouldn't give him a nod or toss him the basketball because they were afraid his Downs might rub off on them? He didn't get to vote on that.

He didn't get to vote on where he would live all these years, every time Brad had to move us from church to church. All the goodbyes. All the lost toys stacked in boxes in the garage every time we had to start over. He never had a say in that either.

But this time is different. This time he's old enough to have a say in who he wants as President. 

He was so excited at the prospect of voting, and especially proud of the picture on his first official I.D.

“Look Son, you’ve got your own I.D. Isn’t’ that great? Now all you have to do is show it to us and we’ll know who you are,” I said.

“Stop it, Mom,” he said. He knew I was yanking his chain and his lips curled into a Popeye grin.

Soon, it was his turn to approach the table where he would sign his name.

“See? I got me one,” he said to a lady who looked at his I.D. and directed him to the voting booth. “Nice picture,” she said. “Very handsome.”

“Yep, I am,” he said, waving the I.D. in the air. “I got a girlfwent,” he said to the lady. “I love girls.”

Mayday. Inappropriate comment alert.

“Son, this is a precinct, not a pick-up joint.”

He shot me a look, like, Knock it off, Mom. “My girlfwent love me,” he told the lady.

“That’s nice,” she said, pointing to the booth, smiling at me.

And with that, Brad and Charley stepped into the booth where Brad would help Charley cast his ballot.

I could hear Brad reading the instructions to him, and showing Charley how to turn the wheel and which buttons to push for his choices.

“I done, Mommy,” he said, as he walked away from the booth. “I boated.”

“We’re proud of you,” Brad said, as we headed out the door and straight to the Fountain City Diner to celebrate. It is on these rare four-year occasions when we get to have pie. No one diets on voting day. Oh the beauty of it.

Well, that’s that. At least I thought that was that.

Tonight I was at the library and took a peek at my cell phone. There were three missed calls from Charley, so on my break I gave him a quick call.

 “Hi Mom, gonna win.”  He sounded excited.

“How do you know?” I said. “It’s still too early to call.”

“Nuh uh,” he said, “I call you.”

“Not that kind of call, honey.”

“See? I got me phone,” he said.

Oh, forget it.

“Are you watching the election returns with Dad?”

“Yep, I am.”


“Son, we may or may not win, but at least you got to vote which means you got to have your say,” I said.


And then, I got to have my say.

“Listen, Son, would you do me a favor?”


“Would you hide Dad’s shoes?”


“Just put them somewhere out of reach.”


“Because I still want a TV that works when this is all over.”

"Okay, Mom."

"By the way, Charley, I meant to thank you."

"You welcome."

"Well, don't you want to know why?"

"Oh. Yes I do."

"I want to thank you for reminding me that voting matters because it means we all have a say, which means we all matter."

"Dat awesome, Mom."

It certainly is.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Call Me!

Here’s a picture of Charley with my cousin Joanie on my Mom’s side. I don’t know how our families do it, but even though we are scattered about the country, when we get together (and this seldom happens), it’s like we haven’t been apart for more than five minutes. 

When we were kids, our cousins lived in Virginia and we lived in Louisville, KY. Our families traveled more then, so we got together more often, but still not that often.

I don’t remember the last time I saw Joanie. Thirty years? Forty? In fact, it had been so long that I’m sure I wouldn’t have known her if I passed her on the street, which is a shame because she’s so worth knowing.

I didn’t know how much we had in common until the day after the funeral when the cousins came to the house and visited. 

Alan was the first to meet Charley the day we brought him home from Texas. Alan lived in Dallas at the time and met us at the airport so he could see the new baby. I think Marion and Anne met Charley at Alan’s wedding.

If there was ever an instant connection, it was Charley and Joanie. Not only does Charley have this way of knowing who likes him, he thinks of himself as a chick-magnet. It took him all of thirty seconds to consider Joanie a chick. And why not? Look how beautiful she is. Charley has good taste.

Poor Joanie. While the rest of us were visiting on the porch, she was drafted into watching a movie in the den. Jurrasic Park? High School Musical? Grease? Who knows what they were watching, but she sat right there and watched the whole thing, beginning to end. Little did she know that while she was just being nice and spending some time with him, Charley thought he was on a date.

From then on, Joanie belonged to him. And with good reason. You see, not long after the funeral, after the trip to the movies in the den, after we all returned to our lives, after Brad, Charley, and I returned home, a box arrived in the mail.

Joanie had sent Charley a phone. It was one of those razor-type flip phones. Joanie asked me ahead of time if Charley would like to have it even though it doesn’t work. I assured her that he would, because he likes anything with a little flip action, and this phone could flip. Now that’s a person who understands people like Charley.

So, while other people were looking cool on their phones, at school, at the dentist office, at the Dr. office, and yes, even at church, Charley wasn’t the least bit left out. He had a flip phone, thank you very much. He too, could be cool. 

 And little does Joanie know that Charley has been calling. Day after day he sits on the couch, in church, in the car, wherever, and makes call after call on that phone. He calls his friend ChrisKabo, his friend Jordan, Marcy (my sister), his Dad, and anyone else he can think of.

When he just wants to connect: “Dis Shawley Pama,” he says.

When he’s hoping to score a big date, (and I have no doubt he’s calling Jordan): “You, me, out date, movie, eat, fwowers (flowers), danceen (dancing), Honeymoon…”

When he wants something: “Mom say yes.” Followed by whateveritis that he wants. A new DVD, a new music CD, or a trip to Kentucky Fried Chicken for our Wednesday night outing to get “Kickenbones.”

When he’s mad at me. “Mommy mean!” He calls to report me to whoeveritis he’s talking to about my latest infraction.

It seems everywhere we go, he flips open his phone, and says, “Call me,” then holds the phone up and says, “I got me phone. See?”

Some people blow him off, thinking this is a little weird. Why, they've had their cell phones forever. It's no longer new to them, it's standard. But to someone like Charley who's never had a phone before, it's a life changer. It puts him into the cool kid category.

Some people though, are good sports and they smile and wave at him, or shake his hand and introduce themselves. 

Funny how he doesn’t care whether the phone works or not, as long as it helps him make connections.

When Brad and I noticed how much fun he was having with his Joaniephone, we decided it might be time to get him one for his birthday that would work because, what’s more fun than a flip phone? A flip phone that works, of course. 

And what’s more fun than a flip phone that works? A flip phone for each pocket. 

Anyone who knows anything knows that only having one of whateveritis is like snubbing the other pocket. Besides, he turned twenty-two on Sept. 29th, which qualifies him for the cool factor.

Now when he leaves the house, he has two flippy phones, not one. One that makes him look cool, and another that makes him look cooler. Now how cool is that?

The other day Charley was looking at my iPad, scrolling through the pictures, and there she was, Joanie, sitting with him on our porch in Louisville. 

This Joanie who lives so far away. 

This Joanie we hadn’t seen in decades. 

This generous Joanie who sees past disabilities and into the heart of a young man who knows he's different yet wants to be like everyone else, whipping his phone out to prove once and for all that he has and will always be cool because he too, has a phone. 

This Joanie who will now and forever, be just a phone call away.

“Look, Mom!” he said, and pointed at Joanie’s photo.

“That’s Joanie,” I said. “Remember? She’s the one who sent you the razor phone.”

"Her purrty," he said, as he looked at her picture. And with that, he reached into his pocket and held the phone up to his ear. “Call me,” he said.

And you know what? I just bet she will.
Call Me!