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Jolly Solly: Stop, Look, and Listen

R. Atkins

Mr. Krankowitz stamped his foot in frustration. Why was everybody in such a hurry nowadays? Nobody had time to stop and listen anymore

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

 Mishpacha image

 

Mr. Krankowitz had gone shopping for some kippers. There was nothing he liked better than a nice grilled kipper on toast. On his way back from the fish store, he stopped off at Gavriel’s Grocery Store to buy some eggs.

He passed the freezer section, which was crammed full of different varieties of ice cream. There were milchig ice creams and pareve ice creams, in flavors ranging from pistachio to passion fruit. The old man stopped and stared in astonishment.

“Whoever in the world needs so many different types of ice cream?” he muttered to himself. “Bah! When I was a boy, nobody had any ice cream at all. We considered ourselves lucky if we had a piece of dry bread to eat.”

He looked around for someone to share his thoughts with.

Gavriel had a long line of customers in front of him and was busy checking out customers, but one of his assistants, Johnnie, was stocking shelves with boxes of cereal, and looked like he might be a good candidate.

“Hey, you!” called Mr. Krankowitz.

Johnny turned to see what the old man wanted.

“Who needs so many different kinds of ice cream, can you tell me that?” Mr. Krankowitz launched into his speech. “It’s utterly ridiculous. Why, let me tell you, when I was a boy....”

.

 

Johnny mumbled about needing to get something from the back, and hurried off as fast as he could.

Mr. Krankowitz scowled at his retreating figure.

“Bah. No manners, some people,” he growled.

He looked around for someone else to talk to. Just then, Fishel and Faivish came into the shop, looking hot and sweaty and desperate for a refreshing ice cream cone.

“Hey!” Mr. Krankowitz tried to attract their attention, as he watched them open the freezer. He drew a deep breath as he prepared to begin his speech yet again. “Let me tell you, when I was a young boy there was no ice cream to be had....” But Fishel and Faivish hadn’t even noticed him, and had already dashed off.

Mr. Krankowitz stamped his foot in frustration. Why was everybody in such a hurry nowadays? Nobody had time to stop and listen anymore. He decided to skip the eggs he had come to buy, and shuffled toward the exit, looking a little more bent and a little more bitter.

As he left the store and headed home, he noticed Moishy Morris and his little sister Miriam walking in front of him. Moishy turned and spotted the old man.

“Hello, Mr. Krankowitz,” Moishe greeted him politely.

“Hello,” said Miriam bravely, before hiding behind Moishy. She didn’t like the grumpy old man very much.

“Humph!” responded Mr. Krankowitz.

(Excerpted from Mishpacha Jr., Issue 720)

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