Posted by: stillironic | January 5, 2010

South of the Border University—12

Roscoe Is a Dickhead

A speeding truck poses a certain amount of danger, another groundskeeper tried to point out.

Roscoe sneered. “Do things my way,” he said, “or Roland’ll have y’all fired.”

No sense in appealing to President Izzard, Gregor knew. More and more often, Izzard—or Clarence, as everyone now called him behind his back—was said to be indisposed. His top assistant was referring all callers and visitors to Roscoe, who now served as the default president as well as Director of Enhancement and acting dean of the law school.

Saturday arrived overcast and only mildly humid. Right before the dedication ceremony, Gregor and Lily saw Izzard talking to Dr. Metzger. Lily said Izzard, who was teetering slightly, looked shrunken. And was that toilet paper stuck to his chin and cheek. Gregor noted that Izzard’s wife Blanche looked like she was trying to hide; her sunglasses covered half her face. And though she stood next to her husband, she was facing as far away from him as she could.

“He looks more like a basset hound than ever,” Gregor said.

Basil Yeast and his wife Cloreen joined Lily and Gregor, whom Yeast patted on the back. He was feeling expansive. Yeast has gained confidence from his talk with Izzard, though the president had denied his request to have Roscoe back. Having the guts to ask for something had been uplifting. It had spurred him to request a sabbatical. Yeast now told anyone who would listen that he had refused Izzard’s request that Roscoe return to the College of Beyond Belief.

“Izzard looks like shit,” Yeast said to no one in particular.

During the ceremony, Roscoe barely mentioned Dr. Metzger’s name. He also failed to follow protocol and recognize Clarence Izzard as president of the university. Instead he introduced himself twice and gratuitously noted that his wife, “Mrs. Roland Roscoe,” was in the crowd. Throughout, Metzger stood with a pained smile pasted on his face. On the sidelines Izzard swayed and fumed.

As Gregor and Lily walked over to the football field with the Yeasts, he felt ashamed of himself for having fantasized that Roscoe would be killed and his body parts spattered all over campus. Yes, Roscoe was a dickhead, but sinking to his level was despicable.

© 2010 by Virginia Gerhart


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