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Cromwell, CT

Following the celebration that revolves around Cromwell Connecticut’s Little League Opening Day, four rambunctious little ball players piled into the back of a freshly washed Honda Odyssey.  Donna Jones (54) and mother of two was behind the wheel of the van, on her way to the local creamery when she proposed a game to help settle down the boys during their eight minute drive. “It’s called the quiet game” said Jones “If you’re not quite, you lose.”

The game ended almost as quickly as it began. A mere thirty seconds had passed and all of a sudden… from way way back in the van… came a sound.


Jones is a busy parent and is often unable to attend baseball games or events of that nature, so she didn’t know the two friends her sons had asked to tag along and grab a cone of ice cream. Given this information, she certainly didn’t know that one of the boys, Ricky Katz (11 and 1 month) had a rather severe case of Tourette’s syndrome.

The game got under way and almost immediately, Katz (11 and 1 month) involuntarily conjured a guttural “HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUH HUUUH HUHHHH hUMMMMMMMM PHSUUUUUU HMM HMM HMMM”, giving Jones (A youthful looking 54) a bit of a jump scare and causing her to say “Jesus Christ, what is wrong with you?”

The deep burgundy Honda Odyssey grew silent. Jones could tell something was wrong. Her eldest son, Brian (11 and 4 months) hesitantly said “Mom, Ricky has Tourette’s.” Donna Jones (still 54 not 54 and 11 months) responded, “Oh my gosh, I am soooo sorry. I did not know that. We can play a different game.” “No that’s okay. We can play this one.” said Ricky. “Are you sure?” “Yah absolutely. If I win, maaaan I can make fun of whoever loses soo frickin bad.”

Just as they were about to jump into the game again the van arrived at the ice cream shop. “Alright who wants ice cream?” shouted Jones (54 and fine yes almost 55). The question was meet by cheers. Ricky however, stood silent. “Ricky, what’s wrong?” “I’m lactose intolerant.” The group froze and looked at one another. “But I can have sherbet! I’m glad you guys invited me. I’m having a blast.”

— A Well-Mannered Grump

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