For Bianca (why won’t you come back?)

“Have you got any matches?” Tom asks hotly.

“What beautiful architectural keystones!” Tom says archly.

“Goodness gracious! I forgot to study!” Tom exclaims testily.

“Give me another bourbon and just put it on my tab,” Tom retorts.

Tom’s ex-girlfriend walks into the bar with a strange man. Tom pretends not to recognize her. “If . . . if I said you looked hot, would you hold it against me?” Tom ex-presses.

“Watch it, pal. I just got out of Rikers,” the usurper interjects freely.

“I’ll have you know, that woman used to be my fiancee!” Tom ex-claims.

“Be careful of that turtle. It is of a dangerous species,” Tom says snappily.

“Princess takes two cans of the wet food per day,” Tom says cattily.

“Sven and I just moved in to his apartment together,” Bianca — Tom’s ex-girlfriend says loftily.

“What did he do? Steal you that Manhattan?” Tom says bitterly.

The hulking heavy gets down off the barstool con-descending-ly.

“Beat it or I’ll cut you!” Tom’s ex’s new boyfriend says scathingly.

“Oh yeah? With that toothpick?” Tom says sharply.

“Quick! Someone cal 9-1-1! Someone’s been stabbed!” a patron shouts cuttingly.

“Would you care to fly a kite?” Tom says airily.

Do you care for one or two lumps of sugar in your tea?” Tom asks sweetly.

“I’ll leave if you just tell me why you wouldn’t marry me,” Tom proposes, to the empty ambulance.

“I don’t think he’s gonna make it,” the paramedic says gravely.

This concludes our section on the type of recreational language game known as “Tom Swifties.” The next section is entitled “Twenty Questions: 1) What did you do with the ring, you bitch?”

Daniel Galef