LEAVENWORTH, Kan. – Averting their gaze and squirming uncomfortably in their seats, the Miller family sat in shocked revulsion as local grandmother Rose Miller, 82, praised the many fine qualities of the holiday cream pie she had made for the family.
“I knew things weren’t going well from the moment she had to excuse herself for wiping some cream pie from her mouth,” said Miller’s son Jonathan, wrinkling his nose in disgust and noting how wide-eyed family members were silently begging God or anyone to step in and stop the conversation.
Continuing unabated, Rose Miller began to extol the finer points of her cream pie.
“I love getting a taste of my cream pie when it’s fresh. I just stick my finger in and get a nice big dollop,” she said. “But of course, I’ve got to add that your grandfather [Charles Miller] helped out with this one. You all should have seen him this morning, pumping away and getting everything all mixed together.”
Briefly waxing nostalgic, Miller continued: “I used to make cream pies with some of the other boys I dated when I was younger, but none of them ever filled me up with as much joy as your grandfather.”
A brief moment of hope for the family came as granddaughter Clarice, 5, distracted her grandmother as she wandered over from the children’s table, but relief turned to revulsion as Rose Miller asked her granddaughter if she’d like to try some of the cream pie. Things then went from bad to worse as the younger Miller asked her “Gammie” what her favorite part of the cream pie was.
“I just love a good crust,” explained the octogenarian, as a faint retching sound was heard from the far end of the table. “I like my cream pies extra crusty.”
“But what I really love is an extra-thick cream pie,” Miller explained. “I like when it’s spilling all over everything on the plate, getting all mixed together in a sticky sweet mess.”
The family finally breathed a collective sigh of relief as the conversation began to go to other dessert topics, but things took a concerning turn as Great Aunt Ethel mentioned that she hadn’t had some good hot nuts since last summer’s county fair.