Getting Old is the Best Revenge
at Morrie under the table, but Morrie isn't picking up on them.
    Morrie continues. "When Dad caught up with that nutcase, he ran to hide in a shower, turned it on full blast, and the only way Dad could cuff him was to get in the shower with him."
    He swats his father playfully. "And what about that extortionist you had to chase driving up Fifth Avenue opposite the one-way traffic?"
    "Morrie, eat your miso soup, it's getting cold," Jack says, obviously trying to stop him.
    "Hold on," I say. "What's this? You were a cop?"
    "Of course he was," says the proud son. "One of the best detectives the NYPD ever had."
    "I thought you told me you had a desk job in Administration."
    "I did, for my last ten years," Jack says, embarrassed.
    "You said all you did was take information."
    "Yes, that, too."
    Morrie chimes in, "Yeah, in a lot of sweaty interrogation rooms."
    "Jack, why didn't you tell me you were a detective?"
    "Well," he says uncomfortably, "you had just become a successful private eye, and I didn't want to steal your thunder."
    "I can't believe you lied to me."
    "Not a lie, a slight exaggeration. It's not easy telling people you're a cop. Do you have any idea what they do when they find out? There's always one joker who's going to ask, 'How many people did you beat up today?' "
    Morrie joins in. "Or 'Does it give you a thrill to carry a gun?' That's what all the gals want to know."
    "It makes you gun-shy," Jack says, "and excuse the pun."
    I give Jack a look that says we're going to talk more about this "slight exaggeration" later. He smiles and shrugs.
    Morrie easily leans over the table and gives me a friendly peck on the forehead. "I've been very self-involved here. Your turn. What's the Gladdy Gold Detective Agency been up to?"
    "Oh, nothing much." I dip my dragon roll into the soy sauce, dropping half the rice off my chopsticks as I do.
    "Don't be modest. I saw you on TV. You're a celebrity now. Cases must be flooding in."
    "Well, the girls and I are on a stakeout. Cheating hubby, you know how that is."
    "Stakeouts are a drag. All that sitting and waiting."
    "Yeah," I say, one tough comrade to another. "How do you handle the boredom?"
    "I do a lot of thinking. Try not to crave the coffee I want but don't dare drink. Go over notes of the case. Think about all the things I'm doing wrong in my love life."
    We all smile at that.
    "I, on the other hand, can do no thinking. I'm stuck listening to the girls shriek at one another as they play cards in the dark. As they rustle sandwich bags and continuously eat. As they kvetch about everything."
    Jack says, "Having company makes it less boring."
    "Boring, they're not. They're adorable, but you don't want to spend too much time locked in very tight places with them."
    Our main courses have arrived. My tofu sukiyaki smells delicious.
    As we dig in, I ask Morrie, "What's happening with those two cases, the wealthy society ladies in West Palm Beach and Boca? You hear anything new about them? I know it's not in your jurisdiction . . ."
    He looks puzzled. "You mean the woman who died on the golf course?"
    "And," I add, "the one who died of heart failure in the steam room at the spa."
    Suddenly, I am winging it. Up to this minute I hadn't given a thought to mentioning these events. But as I listen to their crime stories, my library research resonates in me. "All that money? Sure sounds like a motive to me."
    "You're reaching," Jack says mildly.
    "Don't you think their precincts investigated?" This from Morrie.
    "And I'll bet both husbands had perfect alibis."
    "From what I've heard--they did. But they didn't need alibis."
    "I think it was murder." Even as I say the word, something icy creeps into my heart.
    They both stare at me.
    "I mean, in all the books and all the movies, the husband is always the prime suspect."
    I can't stop my mouth. It just won't listen to my head. "Sure, death by sports and leisure. Maybe the next one will be a 'heart attack' in a hot-air balloon."
    Two sets of

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