“Get in here! Quick!”
All at once the remaining three members of Norman’s family came rumbling into living room, those with socks on slid across the hardwood floor and spun around to gain a better angle on the enormous television.
Of course the TV was big, it was textbook Norman. He had a compulsion where he needed to have the biggest and best in the tri-state area.
He was famous in his small suburban town for buying three TVs in one day and having them delivered immediately so his neighbors could watch the delivery men carry a 40, 50, and then 75 inch television into his house as he relished the fact that all eyes were on him.
Little did he know they all loathed him for this very reason, they held up their charade when he had his “Famous” – Norman’s words – barbecue every Forth of July.
Simply put his stuff was bigger and better than everyone else’s.
Bigger pool? Check.
Bigger barbecue? Check.
Bigger boobs on his wife? Check.
He also had the biggest car in his driveway in a 2009 Ford Excursion, which just sat there only being used on the rarest of occasions.
“The fucking dummy lets it sit there. That truck gets a mile to the gallon, what a waste of money. He probably has a small di – Sorry, Honey. He probably needs Extenze if you know what I mean.” Said, Mr. Johnson – probably a fake name – who is his next door neighbor.
Everywhere you went people felt the same way about him.
Sadly, he had no idea.
He was so oblivious that one day some of the local kids from the cul de sac placed a flaming bag of dog poop on his front porch and he thought it was a game.
The next week Scott and Marsha Wilhelm needed to find a new home as their’s was burnt to the ground while they were “vacationing” in Sacramento, California.
“Vacationing”, in this instance, happened to be them bringing home their newborn daughter because their surrogate gave birth.
They also lost all the gifts they received from the baby shower they were thrown, they were in the nursery.
Norman and his wife were invited to the baby shower because, knowing Norman, he made sure he showed up with the best gift, a $850.00 Four Mom’s stroller.
And, finally, the reason they told Norman they were “vacationing” was to ensure he DIDN’T do what he did to three other neighbors and put a flaming pile of dog poop on their front porch because it was just finished with highly flammable oil-based stain.
As the family huddled around the television they all had smiles on their faces as they eagerly awaited the arrival of the big story that night.
“Who is responsible for the fire on Carpenter Ave.? Police are on the hunt for a local arsonist that has struck before. But first, robberies are at an all-time high, the following message is a must hear for anyone in this area -”
“Alright, right after this story I’ll be famous!” Norman couldn’t contain his excitement. He almost leaped from his chair when he spoke.
“Daddy, I’m so prou -”
“Shhhh. Shhhh. HERE IT IS!”
“Authorities are on the hunt for a suspected arsonist who has been hitting Carpenter Avenue with flaming bags of dog poop. The havoc reached new levels when a family’s house was burnt to the ground. We hit the scene and spoke with a resident.”
“It’s a travesty really.”
The whole family began cheering but was quickly quieted down by Norman who couldn’t help but bask in the glory of seeing himself on his 75 inch television.
“I can’t imagine coming home from quote-un-quote vacation and finding my house like that.”
Norman was brimming from ear-to-ear.
“Amateur footage captured this account of what may have started the fire.”
As the video played, Norman’s wife stood up and walked out of the living room. She made her way to the bathroom where she began crying.
Norman’s smile quickly turned upside-down and he ran after his wife. He placed his ear to the door as to not frighten her and could hear her sobbing. He knocked twice and then opened the door, his wife was sitting on the toilet with her face in her hands.
“Honey, what’s wrong?”
“Don’t think I don’t know what you did, Norman!” She said through tears.
“I’m not sure what you mean.”
“That vi-vi-video on the news. I know it was you who burned down the Wilhelm’s house!”
“Babe, I don’t know what to say. I didn’t mean for that to happen to them.”
Norman was now on his knees in front of his wife trying to console her.
“And now the whole neighborhood will know!” Said his wife who was getting angrier.
“How would they know that? You can’t see my face in that video!”
“Because, you fucking moron, you just HAD to blow up that Christmas picture of us on the front lawn so that everyone in the neighborhood could see how happy we are.”
“Yeah. And?” Norman asked cautiously.
“Maybe you should’ve worn a different sweater.”