Finally two thirty came around, and Richie parked his bucket truck in the lot at United Bell and went inside to turn in his job orders and check out so he can get to practice. Usually it took a good half hour to close everything out, but today was quick. He might actually get to practice before three o’clock. When he walked into practice, Cliff was huddled up with the freshman boys as Greg was giving the business to the girls team.
“What’s Greg all worked up over?” Richie asked Cliff.
“The girls keep turning it over versus the press. They are just being sloppy. Attention-to-detail crap.” Cliff gave the minimal coach 411 answer as he sent his players back out into the press.
“We caught Jeremy on-demanding porn last night. Any ideas on what to do to make him stop without being a prudish parent.” Richie decided to jump right into what had been on his mind most of the day.
“Ooooh! That’s a good one. Let’s go get Greg in on this,” Cliff said, laughing.
“Ahh. Greg doesn’t seem like he is in a good place for this conversation right now.” Richie glanced over at the heated coach.
“C’mon, my brother needs a distraction right now.” Cliff walked over to the other half of the court to see Greg.
“What do you see out there, guys?” Greg said as Cliff and Richie approached.
“Kids that needed their asses chewed out. You did that. They will be fine the rest of practice,” Cliff said, dismissing the troubles of the press break. “We need a plan for Richie’s boy, Jeremy. He was caught watching porn last night.”
Greg started to laugh, very loudly, which totally confused the girls who just saw him angry. “Let’s wait until after practice. I definitely have some ideas. Go and tell Scott and Bill they have to be in on this one.”
Practice passed by quickly and the men headed towards Cliff’s office. Richie shut the door after Bill and Scott finally join them.
“What do you have for me, boys?” Richie asked anxiously.
“How about you tell him you got a bill from the cable company and it is for a hundred bucks for the on-demand shows he watched,” Greg offered.
“Even better, have one of us call at dinnertime and pretend to be the cable company asking about your latest charges,” Bill added to the developing plan.
“Wait! Is your answering machine near the kitchen?” Scott asked.
“Yeah, it’s on the counter next to the table.” “Perfect! Call me before dinner is served. I will call and pretend to be the cable company and say you have outstanding charges for the Skin-a-max films.” Scott could barely contain himself, he was so stoked about the plan.
Richie laughed and clapped his hands. “Guys, that is great. I can have Allison get mad at me for watching porn, watch his face, and see if he ’fesses up for his deed.”
“You have to film this. We need to see this.” Greg pleaded.
“Absolutely. Scott, I will text you before dinner.” With that, Richie ran out the door and headed for home.
After he walked in the door to the kitchen, he kissed Allison and whispered in her ear “the plan.” She nodded her approval. He turned to go into the living room to greet the kids. They were standing in front of the TV playing Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on the Wii. “Hey, guys, how is it going? Any luck getting Shredder?” Richie ruffled the hair of Jeremy first, then Johnny, Joe and Jason.
“Guys, let’s go. Time to shut off the video games and get to the table to eat,” Allison yelled from the kitchen.
All the boys listened well for a change and walked into the kitchen after shutting off the Wii. Richie sent a quick text to Scott: dinner is about to start. He then walked into the kitchen, grabbing his usual seat, and partaking in the usual dinner small talk: school, homework, work, etc. The phone rang, and Johnny got up to answer it. Before he could pick up the receiver, Allison chided him, “Johnny! It’s dinnertime. Let the machine take a message. Sit down.”
Then the message came through the answering machine speaker: “Hello, this is Frank from Cox Cable. We are just giving you a call regarding your cable bill. Last night your on-demand feature malfunctioned and did not show how much College Girls Gone Wild and Orgasmic Surprise cost to view. Each show was $14.99. Sorry for the inconvenience, for the record. If you have any questions, please call customer service at extension 3132.”
Scott killed it on the message. Richie wanted to smirk but knew he had a role to play. He frowned. He looked at Allison with a puzzled look, and she returned the same. Jeremy, Johnny, Joe, and Jason shot glances back and forth between their parents and themselves.
“What are you doing watching shows like that, Richie?” Allison broke the silence, shocking the four youngsters with her loud, whiny voice.
“It wasn’t me!” Richie shouted back. “Honest! It has to be a mistake.”
“Yeah right! It has to be you!” Allison got up from the table and headed over to the machine to play back the message.
“How could it be me? I went to bed early last night because I got up at three in the morning for work. It could have been you!” Richie jabbed an accusatory finger at her.
Allison and Richie took quick glances at the boys, trying to see if Jeremy was squirming. But he was just sitting there, looking confused. Jason and Joe, the youngest two, sat there with a dumb look—the whole subject was way over their heads. Johnny, on the other hand, looked nervous and agitated, and he was squirming in his chair. Richie and Allison quickly realized it wasn’t Jeremy after all, but their ten-year-old Johnny.
Richie quickly adjusted the plan on the fly.
“Wait, Allison . . . if it wasn’t me and it wasn’t you, it must have been Jeremy.” He looked fiercely at Jeremy who shook his head emphatically. “Dad, it wasn’t me!”
“Yeah right, buster! You are grounded and you will not be playing basketball this winter for the travel team.” Allison laid it on thick as tears started rolling down Jeremy’s cheeks.
Johnny could take it no longer. He jumped out of his chair and screamed, “It wasn’t him! It was me.” He covered his face. “I didn’t think it cost money. I thought it was just like getting Ninja Turtles on-demand.”
“We know!” Allison and Richie shouted out in unison.
“Never watch crap like that again. It is not appropriate for someone your age or even someone Jeremy’s age.” Allison spoke in a serious tone to all four boys.
“Jeremy, sorry you were dragged into our little joke on your brother.” Richie rubbed the head of Jeremy, who was taking deep breaths.
That will be quite the video to show the boys tomorrow.
Richie and Allison smiled at each other and encouraged everyone to continue their meals. “Dad, what is orgasmic?” a puzzled Jason asked.
Oh boy! Richie covered his eyes and lowered his head.