Jerry Zezima: The Ice Cream Guy Keeps Trucking

If you want to impress the kids in your life – in my case it would be five grandkids who all have a sweet tooth – announce the exciting news that you’ve arranged for them to own, for free, the hottest vehicle. cool of all time: the neighborhood ice cream truck.

This is what I recently made for my granddaughters Chloe and Lilly, who would eat ice cream for breakfast, lunch and dinner if only their parents, who unfortunately don’t know about the health benefits vanilla soft serve with rainbow sprinkles, let them.

My neighborhood ice cream truck is driven by Mr. Mike, a great guy who’s as nice as the stuff he sells.

“Permission to board,” I said to Mr. Mike after he stopped his truck in front of my house.

” High ! he chirped, happily extinguishing the monotonous jingle that sounded over and over again as he raced down the street.

“Isn’t this song driving you crazy?” I asked.

“I can’t even hear it,” said Mr Mike, who cut the “Turkey in the Straw” melody in the 23 years it’s been blaring from his truck. “But at home, the TV bothers me.”

Not much else bothers Mr. Mike, who was born in Turkey.

“But not in the straw,” he noted.

Inside the truck, I saw a treasure trove of goodies.

“You have enough to feed an army,” I told Mr Mike, who served in the Turkish army before coming to the United States in the 1990s.

“And I taste it every day,” he said. “I taste chocolate, vanilla, everything. I even taste the milk to make sure it’s fresh.

“I guess you like ice cream,” I said.

“I love it,” said Mr Mike, who is 49 and has a slim physique. “In fact, my whole family is crazy about ice cream. My wife, my daughter, my niece, my nephew, my sister, my niece’s kids – they all eat it.

“My grandkids love it too,” I said. “Two of them are sisters and we go out for ice cream all the time.”

“How old are they?” asked Mr. Mike.

“Chloe is 9 and Lilly is 5,” I said.

“When I retire, I’ll give them the ice cream truck,” he said. “They can take over the business.”

“They would probably eat the profits,” I noted, “But I’ll tell them what you said.”

Until then, Mr Mike will continue to work hard, although he intends to take time off in September so that he and his wife can celebrate their 30th birthday.

“I’ll take her on a trip,” he said.

“In the ice cream truck?” ” I asked.

“No, on a cruise ship,” Mr Mike said.

“I hope there’s ice cream on the boat,” I said, adding that my wife had a cup of ice cream every night after dinner. “She puts it in the microwave.”

“What’s your favorite?” Mr. Mike asked.

“I like toasted almond bars, but I can’t find any more, so I choose vanilla,” I said.

” I’m coming very soon ! said Mr. Mike, who gave me a cone of soft cream which he dipped in a toasted almond filling.

“What a combo!” I exclaimed as cream and crumbs lodged in my mustache.

After inhaling it, Mr. Mike let me pour a cone of vanilla soft serve which he dipped in a cherry filling.

“Here’s a magic trick I do for kids,” he says, holding the cone upside down and swinging it back and forth like a pendulum.

“Ice doesn’t fly everywhere,” I said in wonder.

“The secret: fresh milk,” Mr. Mike told me.

“I won’t try this in the house or my wife will kill me,” I said.

Speaking of which, Mr. Mike once made a special delivery to a cemetery.

“A customer told me that his father loved ice cream,” he recalls. “The father said to the son, ‘When I die, I want everyone to have ice cream.’ So I delivered ice cream to the funeral.

Then there was the guy who washed Mr. Mike’s truck in his driveway in exchange for free ice cream.

“My customers are the best,” Mr. Mike said. “We always joke. They tell me: ‘You are crazy, but we love you.’ »

The following weekend, when Chloe and Lilly came over, I told them what Mr. Mike had said about giving them the truck.

“Wow!” Chloe gushed. “That would be great.”

“You can drive,” Lilly told me. “And don’t eat all our ice cream.”


Jerry Zezima

Jerry Zezima writes a comedy column for Tribune News Service and is the author of six books. His latest is “One for the Ageless: How to Stay Young and Immature Even if You’re Really Old.” Join it at [email protected] or via jerryzezima.blogspot.com.

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