"Women are bas-reliefs, not sculptures," Isaac
"Bummer," Marty said.
They were sitting on barstools at a small,
chest-high table watching the fillies stampede in for happy
"Marry the girl, marry the family," Isaac
"Suddenly you have an Uncle Murray you never
wanted to know."
"Look at the knockers on that
A particularly well-endowed young woman slid
past them on her way to a table nearer the bar.
"Bas-relief," Marty said.
"What do you see in her bas-relief?" Isaac
"Cop for a brother."
"Cop for a brother?"
"Arms like elephant legs.
And an Aunt
"Uncle Murray's wife. Has to be taken to the
chiropractor twice a week. Guess who gets to take
"Forget the knockers," Isaac
The well-endowed young woman, now seated alone
at a table nearer the bar, looked over and smiled. She was wearing a green
knit sweater with a plunging neckline calculated to display her generous
endowment to whoever wished to examine her books.
Isaac smiled back with a half-hearted
"Well, maybe not," he said. "Are her parents
in the bas-relief?"
"Of course," Marty said. "You don't get the
knockers without the whole package."
"What are they like?"
"Well, they're not easy to see. Sort of in the
background. What stands out in the bas-relief are the twin peaks. You
hardly notice the parents next to those Himalayas."
"What are they like?" Isaac
"Father's an opinionated SOB. Watches Fox Five
and listens to talk shows."
"And the mother?"
"Religious. Wants you to take the kids to
church every Sunday."
"Church? I thought she was
"Catholic. Half-Irish, half-Italian. Look at
those green eyes on that voluptuous body!"
"What about Uncle Murray?"
"Aunt Flo intermarried."
The well-endowed woman was quickly joined by a
much-less-well-endowed friend, a blond with a tough, gym-hardened body
slipped into jeans and a tight sweater that fit her like a wet
"You get the friend," Isaac said. "I'll take
the opinionated father, the cop brother, the Sundays in church, Aunt Flo,
Uncle Murray. I'm not interested in munching on little dresser-drawer
knobs for the rest of my life."
"Don't you want to take a look at her
bas-relief?" Marty asked.
"What's in her
"She's Jewish," Marty said. "Her father sells
Corvettes. Looking for a son-in-law to take over the
"OK. Maybe you get the
"But wait a minute!" Marty said. "I see a
ghost in the bas-relief!"
"Yeah. Etched in lines just to the right of
and above her head."
"What kind of ghost?"
"It's her twin sister."
"I'm not sharing the Corvette
"She's dead, stupid! Hung herself in the
bathroom of her college dorm."
"She's an identical twin."
"And the kids. They got the genes,
The woman with the dresser-drawer knobs
pressing hard against her tight sweater gave a little wave to Marty, then
giggled to her well-endowed friend.
"Want to take a stroll over?" Isaac
"Wait a minute!" Marty said. "Who gets
"I'm not sure. What did big knockers' father
"I didn't say. But he works construction.
Maybe he can get you into the union."
"I'll go for the Corvette
"And the suicide watch? And the dresser-drawer
"Damn! Why can't they just be
"So which one do you
"Screw it! Anyway, take a
The two young women had been joined by two
young men, and were engaged in animated conversation.
"What are you making up all those things for?"
Isaac said angrily.
"You were the one who said they were
"But look at those sexy sculptures! Look at
them talking to those other two guys!"
"One of them is going to get the suicide
watch. And the other one is going to get to take Aunt Flo to the
chiropractor. Twice a week."
"The hell he is! You just made all that stuff
"Sorry," Marty said. "I was just playing
"Next time we forget the bas-reliefs. We just
go for the sculptures."
They sat silently for a bit, nursing their
drinks, when an hourglass Hispanic girl, with long, curly, obviously dyed
blond hair falling like a waterfall over her bare shoulders, squeezed by
on her way to the bar.
"Bas-relief," Isaac said.
"What's in her bas-relief?" Marty
"Father's a taxi driver," Isaac
"We're making up stereotypes here. Italian
construction worker. Jewish Corvette dealer. Hispanic cabbie. He's
probably a college professor."
"Seven siblings in a three-room apartment.
Looking to you as their savior."
"I thought we were going for
"There are no sculptures. That's the trouble.
They're all bas-reliefs."
"Bummer," Marty said.