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 The Fourth by Karl Kramer

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Posts : 1135
Join date : 2012-01-05
Age : 55
Location : The Moons of Meepzorp

PostSubject: The Fourth by Karl Kramer   Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:09 pm

Old Man Samson lit the fuse for the half stick of dynamite and put it in the mortar. It went off and the loud boom shattered the quiet throughout the neighborhood. The neighborhood kids all squealed in delight with the noise as his other neighbor looked on in disapproval. "Samson! You are over 60 years old and have never grown up! Decent folk here don't like the noise, and those rugrats might get hurt! Do that again and I'm calling the cops!"

Samson was a Vietnam veteran who had served in the last part of that war. He was proud of his country and uniform and wanted to pay his respects to those who did not return to see a display of fireworks. He would use contacts to buy just about every type of illegal contraband to blow up on the holiday. His wife ignored it, his kids were now grown and they brought the grandkids to watch him do his shows. This time seemed different as his neighbor was unusually cranky. With a name like Milton Grubner, one would not expect him to be nice. And he lived up to the name.

Samson got his moniker Old Man in jest when he became a Grandpa and his buddies teased him at the shop. He liked the sound of it and wanted to show older age still could be fun. Milton though went out of his way to be crabby toward Samson and his wife. It would deal with property line disputes of an inch where the fence might of gone over. Or it was a dog barking even if Samson's dog never barked. The Fourth was a time to just make noise and enjoy the weather, food along with family and friends. He also tried to be social on Christmas, but Milton never answered his door as it might be carolers.

Milton had a different take on the situation. He bought his house and just wanted to be left alone and have peace and quiet all the time. A date on the calendar did not mean for the others to create noise and problems for him. Milton had married his wife who had enough of his coldness after 20 years. With no children, she up and left him one night and never even left a note. He received his divorce notification in the mail and signed it immediately. Although they never talked during the last part of their marriage, she still was a bother just being in his house.

"Can we get a dog? Cat? Fish?" she would ask and Milton would tell her he was going to buy rat poison to feed them. The thought of an animal hair dirtying up the place made Milton very angry. He also didn't see why people kept even a fish in the house. That is what lakes and rivers are for. Milton went to sit down and read his newspaper when a very loud boom knocked him off his chair. His heart was racing and he ran again to the door to see Samson smiling to the cheer of his grand brats and those neighbor kids. Milton kept his promise and phoned the police.

"Mr Grubner, we are going to send a car there to quiet them down. But I must say not a holiday or even a day goes by when you don't call and complain about something in your neighborhood. Dogs barking, cats meowing, kids playing or birds chirping. Today is a day where many people have fireworks out even though they are illegal. Many have the very loud ones like you just described. If we see them, we confiscate them. But we are not going to search for them either.

"I suggest you make your peace with your neighbor and try to enjoy a holiday for once in your life. If not, you will die a bitter old man." The dispatcher hung up as Milton seethed. I am going to get that bastard fired! Milton decided to take matters into his own hands by making nice to his neighbor, but for a different reason. He walked outside and had mustered what one might call a smile. Others will say sneer.

"Samson, I do think I should apologize for being such an old poop to you. I guess I forgot this is a holiday and want to make friends at least for today." Samson smiled and told Milton he had plenty of food for him. Milton waited for Samson to leave with his grandchildren so he could tamper with the mortar. He then walked back to the grill and asked Samson about what kind of loud boom that was. "You want me to set one off for you? Is this some sort of citizen's arrest you are planning as soon as I take one out?" Milton assured him he wasn't going to do that.

Samson decided to go ahead and put the TNT in the mortar to shoot it off. He then walked up to Milton and gave him the match. "Why don't you do the honors and fire this one off?"
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The Fourth by Karl Kramer
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