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Oliver Squeezed

Fisher sits babbling over a lemon, picked from the tree in the back yard, resting in a bowl of water.

D: What is that?
F: It’s my pet lemon.
D: Oh, cool. Does it have a name?
F: Oliver. It’s name is Oliver. (Pointing to the stem.) The stem is his hair. Oh, I know what I need!

He runs to the kitchen, climbs on the counter, and returns with a paper towel that he folds up and immerses at the bottom of the bowl.

F (patting Oliver): There you go, Oliver, my little sweetie.

Daddy lets the bowl sit in the middle of the table for a few days but then, when the kids are out, cleans it up. Oliver lands in a fruit bowl, his juice to be extracted for a green smoothie on the weekend. Later, Daddy asks Fisher to go pick three more lemons to be likewise sacrificed. He returns with four.

D: What’s the other lemon for, Fisher?
F: Do you know why I like to pick an extra lemon from the tree?
D: Why?
F: To save one from the blender. (To himself as he moves to reassemble a bowl, water, and paper towel bedding.) You’re my new little Oliver. You are safe with me. I won’t let Daddy mix you…

Daddy stops him when he tries to take the bowl out of the kitchen. Oliver II enjoys a few extra, well-bathed days before he too gives up the juice. There is little doubt an Oliver III is molding away somewhere hidden in their room. The smell will eventually give him away.

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