I was doing what we usually did at night – sit on the steps in front on Ronnie’s house. This evening was not like the others, Sylvia, Ronnie’s sister-in-law had a miscarriage and we were kind of in the dumps since this was the first grandchild for their family. No one was cracking the usual insults and jokes.
The conversation was about the important decisions we had to make; like “was Frank Sinatra past his prime” or should we allow Elvis Presley records on our club’s jukebox along with Frank, Dean, Bobby, Tony, etc. Why have “fast” music when slow was better to dance too. Better to get to know your date. Hold her close. You know what I mean.
Just then Ronnie’s father, Mister C, came out of the house to someone of his Parodi Cigars. They were the bane of an Italian household. I remember when my aunt and uncle moved to a new house and my aunt refused to by new furniture due to my uncle smoking Perodi’s in the house. Well, she did get her new furniture. When my uncle had a stroke and the doctor told him to give up smoking; my aunt went out and bought all new furniture and drapes.
Mister C sat down and said, “You know Silvia losa da baby”. We all agreed that this was sad. He then said, “Boyz, you know why Silvia losa da baby”? Someone responded, “Ya, she had a miscarriage.”
Mister Cr said, rather bitterly, “Datsa wrong. It’sa that god dama hota dog. You keeds eat that god dama hota dog. It killa you.”
Now you have to understand the culture. Mister C never went out to eat. Meals outside of the house were never as good as home. And the “hota dog” was garbage.
We had a hot dog stand down the street. It made the best Chicago hot dogs. Bun, kosher dog, onions, relish, mustard, hot peppers and best of all thin french fries added at the end. So that when you bit into one of those babies, you got everything including the fries in one bite. Heaven on a bun.
Mr. C sincerely believed that due to Silvia’s eating a hot dog the evening before gave her the miscarriage. As far as he was concerned this was gospel. Take it to the bank true.