Hal and Sal were each plugged into their own digital worlds, one with earphones, the other with a headset. Hal was listening to tunes while watching Sal wipe out zombies, gaming with some online pals. Sal shot a blast from his favorite weapon, Thunder Gun, sending the closest zombie writhing. As he fell in spasmodic convulsions, Hal said, “Looks like he’s got epilepsy.”
Sal turned and gave Hal a curious look. His hesitation caused him to lose focus and his last game life got zapped from a zombie sneak attack.
Sal asked,” What was that? Did you say something about ‘epil-Pepsi’?”
Hal broke out in his own convulsions, but these from laughter. “Yeah, right. That zombie got popped by a Pepsi. Dude, you say some of the weirdest things!”
“What? What did you say? I thought you said that zombie’s got epil-Pepsi. What is that? Some new Pepsi? Why are you laughing? What’s so funny?” squirmed Sal.
Hal could see the rising embarrassment in his brother’s fidgeting and decided to back off. Even though they’re brothers, Hal didn’t like to push Sal past his “squeal point”. (That’s what he called it when Sal got really riled up. His voice starts to rise to a really high pitch as he protests and he sounds like a squealy little pig… at least, to Hal that’s how he sounds.) Sal’s squeal point could be hard on the ears.
Hal slowed his laugh to a chuckle and finally stifled it to a grin before he said, “I’m sorry, Sal. I said I thought the zombie looked like he had epilepsy. It just struck me really funny when you thought I said ‘epil-Pepsi’. Like the dude got zapped by a Coke.”
Sal settled some, but still look befuddled. “OK, smart guy. So I don’t know as many big words as you. So? You gonna clue me on on what this epilepsy thing is?” asked Sal.
Hal stopped smirking. “Epilepsy, you know, seizures. Like Uncle Fredo has. The signals in his brain get sort of messed up and he has those spells he can’t control that make him sort of start falling out,” said Hal. “It isn’t a joking matter and I probably shouldn’t have said it. Fredo has had a lot of trouble controlling his seizures and I know it’s nothing to joke about.”
Sal understood, but then asked, “So how’s come you were laughing so much if it isn’t funny?”
Hal stumbled a minute, “Uh…well…I wasn’t laughing about that. I was laughing about how you said it: ‘Epil-Pepsi”. Like it was some sorta soda pop malfunction thing.”
“Guess we both said a sorta dumb thing today, huh?” suggested Sal.
“Yeah,” said Hal. “Touché, bro.”
Posted – March 21, 2012