Know when to hold ’em


In which Violet Greer talks to animals.

We met Astrid a few months ago, here. Her imagination is no less active. She’s moved on from pretending to be a cop, to an elaborate gambling fantasy. The pig is nowhere in evidence and I can only assume it is in prison.

I asked Astrid what she was playing with her friends.

“If you want to talk to me you’ll have to ante-up. We’re not running a charity around here.”

I asked her to deal me in.

“Okay, gang, we’ve got a live one! Triangles are wild, and if I catch that elephant counting cards again he’ll be sitting with the pig in the closet.”

I told her I’d never played this game before.

“You want to sit this one out? The duck’s about to double down and I don’t have time to deal with an amateur.”

I said maybe I should just watch.

“Yeah, suit yourself. The penguin’s a high-roller – might be too rich for you.”

After a couple of rounds of Astrid moving the cards around, I asked her who had won.

“This hand’s a bust. Why don’t you go help the pit boss get our snacks ready?”

I said I didn’t think pit bosses brought snacks.

“Well, mine does. Look here she comes now!”

Sure enough, the owner appeared with a bag of treats and started handing them out. Astrid ate them all.

Special thanks to Barb for sharing her picture!

Astrid has an etsy shop! Go here to check it out.