Happy Birthday, Larry
By: L. Alan Russo

It was like any other day, when Saul walked into his law office. In fact, he thought about getting in a few rounds of golf and be back before lunch. That was until his friend and client Larry Dash walked in, he was an emotional wreck and begin to cry once he saw Saul.

"I… I need to file these papers, Saul," Larry blubbered and handed Saul a stack of papers.

"Okay, Larry," Saul said, then looked down at the papers. "Larry, these are divorce papers."

"I… I know," Larry sobbed. "It's… It's over."

Saul walked around his desk and sat silently while he read through the documents.

"Okay, pull yourself together, while I read through all of this," Saul said in a comforting voice.

Saul begin to read the stack of papers, and unconsciously tapped his pen against his desk. After a few moment, he glanced up at his client with a confused expression, and then asked, "Okay, help me to get this straight, Boss?"

"Sure," Larry said in a sad voice.

"Okay, umm, just for clarity," Saul said, with a hint of irritation to his words. "You are clear that you are filing for a divorce. Correct?"

"Yes. Yes that is correct," Larry answered and leaned forward onto the desk. "Do you forsee a problem?"

A look of shock covered Saul as he leaned forward and met Larry's troubled gaze with his own, and said, "Larry. I've known you and Sandy for what twenty years?"

"Yeah, about that."

"And you walk in here and drop this bombshell on me," Saul said, and leaned back into his over sized executive chair. "I was unaware that you two were even having problems."

"The sex. Right? It's always the sex," Saul said. Before Larry could answer, he removed a cigar from the top drawer of his desk and bit down on it. "Julie ran off with that Judge, he was like eighty and needed Viagra to get it up, but he had one hell of a bank account."

"Oh, I did not know that."

"Yeah, she took half." Saul snared. "Anyway, let me guess, she got caught porkin' her boss? Money will do that to the best of us, Larry."

"Well… No. We weren't having trouble until my birthday," Larry explained.

"Speaking of birthday, that is not a proper answer to why are you filing for a divorce," Saul snipped. As he waved a piece of paper in front of Larry's face.

"But that was what caused this whole mess in the first place," Larry retorted and rubbed his hands over his face in frustration. "If it wasn't for that damned birthday. It's all the birthday's FAULT!"

Saul felt he was losing control of the situation and jumped to his feet in annoyance and slammed his hand down on top of his desk and shouted, "HOW?! How in God's name can it be the event of you getting one year older's fault?! HOW?!"

Larry looked at his lawyer in confusion, who's face appeared to be glowing red with anger and irritation. He knew better not to say anything until his council finished pacing and sat back down in his chair.

"Okay. Okay," The Lawyer said while he adjusted his tie. "Perhaps… Just perhaps, we start at the beginning and you tell me the entire story."

"Where do you want me to begin at," Larry asked.

"At the beginning of course." Saul said.

"It all started last Friday, it was the 27th and was, as we already established, my birthday," Larry said. "Typically, I'd wake up to my wife, Sandy, uh…, well, you know, wishing me a happy birthday in her own special way."

"Nice." Saul said with an approving smile. "Go on."

"Well, again, normally afterward, she'd clean up and go make me a stack of flapjacks," Larry said, and rubbed his face as the realization of everything becoming more real.

"Sandy cooked for you?" Saul asked.

"Totally. Only on my birthday, though,"

"So what happened this time around?"

"Well, I wasn't woken by her, but her alarm clock."

"Really? Explain."

"Her alarm clock went off and woke me up in time for work. After I got up and around, she already had taken off to the hospital." Larry continued. "When I went down stairs, I was hoping that maybe she left the flapjack in the microwave, but no such luck."

"What about your kids," Saul asked, as he lit the cigar.

"Nope. They are so lost in their phones and tablets, they did not even notice me standing in the kitchen with them. They both left without saying a word. Happy Birthday, you suck, even a kiss my ass would've been nice."

"Okay. So what happened next?"

"Well, feeling down, I called my parents, but forgot that they don't get out of bed until ten since dad retired," Larry said. He pulled a cigarette out of his pocket. "You mind, Saul?"

"No. No. Go ahead," Saul answered.

"Thanks," Larry said and lit his cigarette. "So, I got a ticket on the way to work and like my family no one acknowledged that it was even my birthday."

"To be fair, most people in the office wouldn’t know my birthday, if asked," Saul said.

"True. But, you know, some of these people proclaim that they were my friends. Not even so much as a Facebook post."

"Okay, no one wished you a happy birthday."

"Well, not no one."


"When I walked into my office, my secretary told me Happy Birthday," Larry said as he looked down with a smile. "That simple act of kindness made me feel so special."

"You sign her paycheck, Larry, that's not special," Saul explained to Larry.

"Killjoy," Larry said. "Well, for lunch she invited me out to eat with her."

"Olive Garden, right?"

Larry stared at Saul, and did not answer.

"Yeah, it was Olive Garden. Anyway, continue."

"After lunch, she convinced me to take the rest of the day off and invited me to her apartment."

"You dog! You didn't," Saul asked and straightened up in his chair. "You did, didn't you?"

"Once we got there, she told me to have a seat that she needed to go back into her bedroom for a minute," Larry said flatly and flicked the ash of his cigarette. "I said of course, take as much time as you need."

"What happened next," Saul asked excitedly.

"About five minutes later, she came out from her bedroom with a birthday cake, my wife, my parents, my kids, my friends," Larry elaborated, then butted out his cigarette. "Everyone yelled, "SURPRISE!"

There was a long pause, confused Saul asked, "And?"

"And? And now, I'm getting a divorce." Larry said.

"Okay, I'm lost. Why do you feel that is grounds for divorce?" Saul asked.

"Oh. Because while I was waiting on the sofa…"


"I forgot to mention that I was butt naked."



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