This year’s Christmas Dinner will be different than in previous years, due to the presence of Dennis Grayling, 56, your mother’s new boyfriend.
“Well, Dennis and I have been getting pretty involved lately,” explains your mother. “Also, his daughter and her fiancée said that they want to have some time to themselves this Christmas.”
“It’s just not Christmas without Dennis’s famous southwest coleslaw,” reports Dennis as he places the plastic container on the platter in the center of the table where the roast beef is supposed to go.
“The secret ingredient,” he discloses, “is bacon.” Dennis wants three things for Christmas this year: his new heartburn medication, tougher immigration legislation, and your mother’s thighs. She punches his shoulder teasingly and you avert your eyes as her attempts to sexily nibble his ear result in her licking his sideburns. “How’s Barber College going, Cowboy?” teases Dennis, who makes it up to you by showing you his tattoo of a Harley Davidson motorcycle above the words, “Spring Break, 1976.”
Over dinner, Dennis talks about the dry cleaning company that he runs with his older brother, that time he went to Miami, and how he’s happy for his ex-wife, despite all the raw shit she put him through. “So Cowboy,” he asks you, “got any special lady in your life?” “No,” you say tersely, prompting him to reassure you about how it will all work out, how you’re a good looking kid, and how forlorn he was after his wife left him, only to find a beautiful new woman who lets him do things his old wife never would.
“I want you to know that I am in this for the long haul,” Dennis says after dinner, tipsily readjusting his Santa hat, “never turn back, that’s my motto.” Maybe it’s not so bad. At least your mother seems happy. But Dennis’s breath smells like Pepto Bismol and you’ve never really felt like a Cowboy. Nonetheless, Dennis understands what you’re going through. He’s a child of divorce himself and, hey, he turned out pretty good.