The Don, surrounded by serried ranks of mafiosi. He strokes his favorite cat, Salvatore. He speaks.
The Don: So, Michele, you have the winner for me?
Me: Yes, your Don-ness
The Don: Enough of the fancy schmanzy, Michele. Bring me the hat. (He trawls stubby fingers through the pieces of paper in the hat, draws one out.) Here's the winner.
Luca Brasi, in a high-pitched voice: Is it me, Uncle Vito?
The Don: Did you comment, Luca? Did you take part in Michele's blog celebration? No? Then shut up.
(Luca steps back, shamefacedly.)
The Don: Okay, Michele. Who's the winner? He gets an agent, right?
Me: Er, no Godfather. He or she gets 25 bucks.
The Don: 25 bucks?! What is this, a second-rate operation? You might as well give them 25 lire--or what do they call 'em now? Euro? My grand-daughter gets 25 bucks for washing my car. The winner of this thing should get an agent. My nephew, Luigi. He only takes a 60 percent commission.
Me: (thinking Holy Mother of God): Okay, Godfather. We'll give the winner 25 bucks and Luigi. And the winner is...
(Sorry, Kristen. I'll make sure Luigi gets sent to Boston, Indiana!)
Seriously, hooray for Kristen. She's a great MG writer, she's funny, and she writes a great blog at Don't Forget the Samovar. If you don't know her, go on over and meet her right now.
Thanks, everyone, for all your comments and support this past year. I am humbled and happy. We had a great week, Luca was thwarted, and Luigi's getting an all-expenses paid trip to the Indy 500!! Grazie!