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At The Restaurant.

A true story my brother tells.

Now the story goes that my middle brother Tom was treating our youngest one, Fred to lunch at our favourite twenty-four restaurant. He had heard us talk about it and was excited to visit the place that we frequented. Now despite it being the end of the lunch rush, it was still crowded when they arrived, but a booth was located and cleaned as they waited.

As they were escorted to their seats, they passed the booth occupied by one Dominic "The Tank" Tancotta. We all knew him, but at this point in time, we were not close, but we were there almost as often as he was. He nodded his greetings as they passed and smiled at the surprised look on my youngest brother's face.

Now Dominic was well named as he resembled a tank, he was big, wide and solid. His arms and chest bulged with muscles from years of doing concrete and construction work and his capacity for violence when provoked were legendary. They were seated on the boot in front of his with Tom's back to him.

All the waitresses knew us as it was not uncommon for our little group to have breakfast — lunch and sometimes dinner there. We could also be found there after the bars closed. The girls came over to admire this handsome little boy seated in window seats. Tom smiled as they gushed over his Fred's looks causing him to blush with embarrassment.

Fred was told that he could order whatever he wanted and his eyes went wide as he looked at the pictures of all the dishes in the menus. I don't remember how old Fred was, but he still had the eating quirks that many youngsters have.

"Will they cut the crust off?" he asked Tom.

"Only sissies have the crusts cut off their sandwiches, " Tom responded in mock anger at  Fred's question.

A second later Tom told us that a large well-muscled arm was slid across his shoulder and throat and the next thing he knew Dominic's face was very close to his.

"I like the crusts cut off my sandwiches. Does that make me a sissy?" he said softly.

"No sir," Tom stuttered.

Dominic withdrew his arm and gave our youngest a wink. The orders were placed with the added instructions to remove the crusts from  Fred's sandwich. Fred totally enjoyed his sandwich, fried and shake. Tom said he lost his appetite. 





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