Old Man Davis and Sue-Ellen
The First Argument…
*The O’Jays Loving You on repeat*
“Davis! Come on and get this coffee while it’s hot!”
Sue-Ellen wobbled from the kitchen counter to the small and equally wobbling dinette set, placed two coffee mugs down and poured the grainy goodness into each mug. She was grumpy from her lack of sleep due to the previous night’s storm. Her eyes were heavy with worry, her heart, heavy with sorrow. Coffee would make everything all right.
“Woman! All of 5th Avenue can hear you. You don’t need to yell.”
“Don’t start with me this morning, Davis. I am clearly not in the mood. Now, you want one lump of sugar or two? And, we are all outta cream, so don’t even ask about it.”
Davis sat back in his chair, weighing his options. Black coffee with sugar, but no cream was not how he usually took his coffee and he wanted to know why Sue-Ellen did not include cream on the grocery list when she went shopping yesterday. He decided to pick her brain.
“So, you went grocery shopping and neglected the cream? How does that work, Sue-Ellen?”
Sue-Ellen still not seated, crouched her body into a position that was cautionary and informed Davis without words to perhaps, ease up. But, did he do this? No. She filled her mouth with venom and spat the words as quickly as they came to her.
“When you learn how to clean house, wash your clothes, iron them also, pick up your suits from the cleaner’s, run errands, and cater to the women of First Greater Baptist Missionary Church, then you can gripe about some damn cream with me. I had a lot on my list of “To-Dos” yesterday, Davis. Again, don’t start with me! I mean it!”
“Sue-Ellen, why don’t you mind? I ain’t trying to pick no argument with you, but I am the only man on 5th Avenue having a hard time getting his wife to do as he says. What’s the problem? What am I missing?”
Davis sipped his coffee and shot an odd look in the direction of Sue-Ellen. Too bland, still, but he drank it without complaint. His wandering eyes are faulty and in pursuit of trying to see just how mad Sue-Ellen is, so he watched her as she prepared to respond.
The sound or her arthritic fingers cracking echoed throughout their home. She stood back on her worn shoes, leaned over Davis, got in real close and said:
“You did not marry me for my ability to submit to you. You married me cuz I’m one helluva cook and I bend you in ways your previous wives could not. Since you eggin’ me on about some damn cream, I will simply oblige. I will forsake my fresh cup of hot coffee to venture out and get you some cream. Will that soothe your aching soul, Davis?”
Davis sighed, he did not know what to say. Sue-Ellen was so close to him, he could feel the heat leaving her furious body. He decided not to shake things up any further. For once in his life, he was scared of his wife.
“You ain’t gotta go and get no cream, Sue-Ellen. I’ll drink it like it is. I ain’t mean to start no war, and since you aimin’ to be the General, I will bow out.”
“Davis, you are a wise man.”
Sue-Ellen sat down. She leaned back in her chair, casually sipped the hot coffee from her favorite mug, and hummed a sweet tune to set her mind right. The cloudy air of their home settled. Another morning was off to an okay start.