Chapter 1: A Friendship for Granted
It’s a Friday afternoon and the famous moustachioed Italian carpenter Javier Umpman, or Jumpman as he likes to be known, is putting the finishing touches to a lovely oak television cabinet for his most important client – the President of the United States, Mr. Nigel Nixon. Jumpman is mere seconds away from attaching a beautiful door for concealing a VHS player or an Atari 2600, when there is a knock at the door. Mama Mia, what-a time for the door to knock, says Jumpman, before leaving his workshop and venturing downstairs to see who it is.
Jumpman opens the front door and is greeted by the beaming smile of his best pal and next door neighbour Donkey Kong – a gigantic ape whom Jumpman has been best friends with for many years. How the two of them met and became friends is not important, nor is it that interesting or particularly integral to this tale.
I’ve got us courtside tickets to tonight’s basketball game, says an excited Donkey Kong. I know you really wanted to go, so I traded them with a colleague at work in return for working every weekend for next seven months. Wow, that’s-a really nice of you DK, says Jumpman, but I’m afraid I can’t go-a. I’ve really gotta finish this television cabinet for the President. Perhaps we can go another time-a? And with that, a heartbroken DK walks away, dragging his knuckles on the pavement with tears in his eyes and a pain in his heart. Jumpman closes his front door and, feeling a small pang of guilt, says: I hope DK wasn’t too upset-a; I’ll make it up to him by buying him a tub of his favourite hair wax-a.
A few days later and there’s another knock at Jumpman’s door. Jumpman opens it and this time he is greeted by the prettiest smile he has ever seen. Hello, my name is Pauline, says the mouth belonging to the smile. I hear you are the finest carpenter in all of Brooklyn. I’m looking for someone to make me a wooden jewellery box as a gift for my mother. Jumpman is immediately lovestruck and struggles to speak. Yes, that’s-a me, I’ll be happy to help-a, he answers, just give me one week and I’ll have it ready for you-a. Oh thank you, replies Pauline, and she gives him a kiss on his cheek. Mama Mia, says Jumpman, I’m on cloud-a nine-a.
Donkey Kong, spying through his net curtains, can see Pauline leaving Jumpman’s house. I wonder who that is, he questions. It doesn’t matter, I’m so excited, I can’t wait to tell Jumpman about the fishing trip I’ve booked for us next week. Finally, some alone time with my best pal and our awesome friendship.
To be continued…