The Horrible Horrible

“Tell me a Fat Jenny,” my six year old nephew begged, “pleeeeeeeeeeease!”

In my day, it had been Tell Me a Trudy. How had we progressed, or regressed, to Fat Jennys? Who was Fat Jenny? Fat Jenny was the name my Mom gave a young, soap opera watching during work, semi nice to your face stab you in the back, make your ears burn like red hot pokers from talking about you then bless your heart to your face, coworker. Mom was the Assistant Director of the Library and the Children’s Director. Fat Jenny donned the title Children’s Librarian by using an eye of newt, a magic wand, and some hokum she produced an invisible Library Science diploma.

I plopped a squat at the end of my sister’s bed ready to tell a tale and weave some magic of my own, when I heard a familiar voice beckon, “Where are my people?” My sister was home from work and looking for us.

Jack yelled back, “We’re in here and Aunt Suz is about to tell a Fat Jenny!”


Thea was instantly at the door sliding Jack over. “Well, go on with your rat killin’.” Great. My 47 year old sister was in on it now, too.

Once upon a time there was a horrible horrible who was so fat that her ears had pillows of flesh. She worked-hardly-with Granny Dee at the library and took credit for all of the brilliantly beautiful childrens’ programs Granny Dee whipped up. Her name was (chorus) Fat Jenny.

One day, the director of the library asked everyone to do a bit more leg work at the desk helping the customers. She eyed Fat Jenny as she said this, because she knew Fat Jenny had been watching Jane Austin movies at her desk again during work. Mom’s friend Betsy mainly worked the desk. A man walked up to the desk and began to ask for help. Now, Betsy was free and at the desk center. She turned around to walk over to the man. Before she knew what happened, Fat Jenny had booked it from her desk to the customer service desk. Betsy, a slight woman of 65, bounced into her and richochet onto the floor. If you listen closely, you can still hear the jiggle of Fat Jenny’s belly to this day. Eventually, Betsy got up and walked off a limp.

And, that is how Fat Jenny got out of ever working the front desk again.

“Horrible,” whispered Thea

“Horrible!” exclaimed Jack.