GK: -----brought to you by the Ketchup Advisory Board.

SS: These are the good years for Jim and me. The kids came home for Christmas and stayed for two hours, which was what their therapist recommended, and nobody yelled, nobody accused us of ruining their lives, so I guess the meds are working ---- our daughter gave me a book, How To Stop Hurting People and I gave her a box of personal deodorant sticks. Our next-door neighbors went away for the holidays so we were able to go over and rip down those wind chimes that have been driving us nuts. So it was good.

TR: Barb gave me a set of videocassettes of that Danish TV series she loves so much. And I gave her a box of my favorite caramels.

SS: We should've been happy. But I came downstairs on Christmas morning and found Jim staring out the window, not even touching his coffee. ---- What's wrong, Jim? It's Christmas. It's a joyful time. Remember?

TR: This is the tenth anniversary of the Christmas when Mr. Pokey left us, Barb.

SS: Oh for goodness sake-----

TR: I know, to you he was only a box turtle, but to me, he was a friend from childhood ---- he was my best friend.

SS: Jim, a turtle is not capable of being a friend except to other turtles.

TR: He was not like other turtles, Barb. He was a service animal. A helper turtle.

SS: Anyway, he was 22 years old. He had a rich full life.

TR: But he didn't deserve to die----

SS: Jim!!!!!! It was an accident. He slipped out the door when I was taking out the garbage.

TR: It takes a long time for a turtle to get out a door, Barb.

SS: I was holding three big garbage bags.

TR: It would take ten, fifteen minutes for an old turtle like Mr. Pokey to travel ten feet and climb over a threshold.

SS: Oh for heaven's sake----

TR: Unless he was given assistance.

SS: He wanted to go outdoors.

TR: He froze to death. I found him in the spring. His little shell in the flower bed.

SS: He had a good life and that's all a turtle can ask.

TR: I've never asked you this before, Barb.

SS: It's been ten years, Jim.

TR: Did you pick Mr. Pokey up and carry him outside and forget him?

SS: It's time to move on, Jim.

TR: He was the irreplaceable turtle.

SS: Jim, I think maybe you're not getting enough ketchup.

TR: Mr. Pokey loved ketchup.

SS: Ketchup contains natural mellowing agents that help a person let go of sad memories and focus on the happy ones.

TR: I'm working on it. Okay?


These are the good years, in the morning sun.

A new day is dawning, a new life has begun.

Life is flowing, like ketchup on a bun.

GK: Ketchup. For the good times.

RD: Ketchup.....ketchup.....ketchup.