So with the arrival of “the family” this weekend, all the out-of-towners were of course drawn to Chicago’s main dietary accomplishment – deep dish pizza. “The family” was invited over on Friday night, and a pizza party ensued. It was an entertaining and enjoyable night, resulting in something even more enjoyable for the parents of the Gremlin – leftovers. Mmmmmmmm, deep dish.
In celebration of Chicago, his Aunt Kelley went in with his mother to get the child: a cloth pizza. This pizza is eight slices of fuzzy temptation, complete with olives, onions, pepperonis, tomatoes, and even a packet of cheese. It has become one of his new favorite toys (as his parents frequently travel to the authentic Italian restaurant to get brick-oven pizza with smoked meats and authentic cheeses), and I’ve spent the last few days tracking down small bits of olive and onions and other accoutrements.
So a few days later, it happened that the Mother of the Gremlin warmed up a slice of pizza for lunch. Knowing our darling dearest is lactose intolerant (just intolerant, not allergic), she wisely steered our son (and his love with everything cheese) away from the inch-thick slab of Wisconsin goodness, and fended him off while maneuvering and sitting on the couch.
Even with the soy yogurt solution, he quickly realized that she was attempting to distract him, and came in to investigate. It so happened that the MOTG had forgotten a fork, and the two met in the hallway. As she told him “Please stay away from the pizza” she remembered that she also needed something to drink. So she retrieved her fork and dispensed herself a refreshing beverage, only to return to find a curious oddity in the living room.
Where there had previously been a large slice of cheesy, hot, Girodano’s pizza, there now sat a small, fuzzy, piece of cloth with what looked like a cloth imitation of an olive and a slice of onion. As she stood, surprised by what was before her, she heard a rustling in the Lair of the Gremlin. She entered cautiously, knowing the Gremlin to be a fickle creature, and didn’t see him at first. Unless… yes! A sock actually attached to a leg! And curiously, hidden behind both the bookshelf and the crib. As she stepped over to where the Gremlin lay smacking his lips she put out a question.
“Is that my pizza?” The bright, blue eyes of the Gremlin froze, and then peered up at her as if to ask why she was invading his territory while he was eating. After he realized he was supposed to do something, he lifted the last quarter of the slice and – hoping to still keep what remained – asked another question.
Realizing that his ploy had failed, the Gremlin scrambled to secure the decoy he had so cleverly sacrificed to have his fifteen seconds of freedom. One day, he told himself as he tottered back to reunite the lost slice to the rest of the pie, one day he would have an entire slice.