Toby

(The Office, U.S.)

When Toby was a youth nothing excited him more than the glossy pages of Consumer Reports.  Sure the current issue was catchy, but he also liked to look back and get a deep history of a product.  At the moment he was particularly infatuated with the frozen pizza phenomenon since each parent told him they would stock this treat for him if he would testify against the other in the custody hearing.  Could there finally be a shred of goodness in this torturous situation?  But which frozen pizza should a young man select?

They all claimed to include six ounces of real cheese on their twelve inch pies, but Toby would wait until Consumer Reports revealed those who had fibbed.  He was partial to Mama Celeste, though he fought the feeling because he knew it was rooted in emotion.  Clearly Mama Celeste was a one-man lady who cared about family.  She would never get a divorce.  Her friendly eyes, her tastefully dangling earrings – she would never ask her son to testify.  But, he’d felt this way about his own mother once and he knew now that people could change.  He needed proof of her honesty before “Celeste, Pizza for One” could become his brand.

The report he required was nestled on the top shelf at the public library.  The librarian had expressed irritation with him earlier today, admonishing him to go outside and play.  Yeah, well what did she know about it?  He didn’t need her and her judgmental blouse.  He could reach it himself.

As he fell, plummeting downward, his first thought was that now his parents would have to stay together to jointly nurse him back to health.  Twitching on the floor he heard the annoyed librarian call an ambulance as he formed his brilliant, two-prong approach;  ham up the pain and consistently compliment his mother’s hair.  It worked wonders on his male nurse who increased his pain medication and remarked on the suaveness of his mother’s locks.  His father unfortunately remained immune.  His parents argued about the bill, who would cover which portion of visiting hours and who drank the last TaB.

In the end Toby received a metal replacement hip.  Back at school, he instantly regretted trying to woo Tiffany Hatcher by hinting that his new hip gave him superhuman strength; “Toby Sommers the Bionic Spaz” still haunts him on his bad days.  Now when it chafes, resulting in local swelling, he gets that pinched look on his face and puts “Mood Indigo” on repeat.