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One Prius, Two Prius, Pink Prius, Blue Prius
by Jerry Guarino

There is no actual proof that there are more white Prius cars than any other model in California. Some estimates put the number at over two million. The hybrid car became so popular that Toyota began making personalized versions to match owner’s particular interests. There were models to match your college colors, cars with artwork laminate and even a baby blue and pink model to celebrate newborns.

Tony and Barbara sat in the first table at the wedding of their son Jim. You might remember Jim from the time he took his shotgun trying to excavate that pesky rooster from his parents home. Now, he was betrothed to Dianne, the girl he first met in Sunday school, fifteen years earlier. They were a striking couple, Jim’s rugged good looks and Dianne’s classic beauty like the French statue she was named for. Surely the children would be just as handsome or beautiful as they were.

“It won’t be long before you’re a grandmother dear” said Tony to his wife.

“Oh, I can’t wait. I’ve already started picking out patterns for baby clothing and blankets.”

“Baby blue?”

“Probably. You know Jim. He’ll want a boy”

“I’m going to say they’ll have a girl, so better buy some pink too.”

It was a flawless wedding. No drama or problems. All the couple’s friends and family were there and the youngsters partied long into the night.


Jim was a type A force while Dianne was more reserved, but together they blended well. Like many young couples, they spent a lot of time out, visiting wineries, going camping and having friends over for dinner. Most of their friends were married the same year they were, so there were a lot of weddings to attend. Dianne’s sorority sisters were all ready to set up families of their own.

A short year later, Jim was able to buy out the motorcycle shop he worked for. After another year, they had saved enough money to make a down payment on a house. At the housewarming party, many expected this couple to announce the third grand surprise, a baby.

“Tony, you still driving that antique car?” Jim loved to make fun of Tony’s Prius.

“Yes, still getting 50 miles to a gallon too. How about that truck of yours? You’ll have to get rid of it when you have a family. Need a good four door with good mileage.”

“Tony, did you hear that Toyota is recalling the Prius with a brake problem? But don’t worry, Prius cars don’t go fast enough to need brakes.”

“Good one Jim. Remind me that when you’re paying $80 to fill your tank.” Tony and Jim had this sort of friendly joking about Jim’s high-powered truck and motorcycles and Tony’s practical hybrid car. Dianne even chimed in. “Jim was having a nightmare and I could distinctly hear him say, no, not another Prius.” Tony and Barbara enjoyed this ribbing.

Barbara took Tony aside and asked in a whisper. “How long before you think Dianne will be pregnant?” she said.

“Actually, she looks quite content today. I wouldn’t be surprised if she was already there. Did you notice she hasn’t had any wine today?”

“You’re right. I didn’t catch that.”

So Tony asked Dianne’s father what he thought. “Say you’re right. She usually has had a glass of wine by now. Should we start a pool on the birth date?”

Tony’s prediction was confirmed the following week when the couple visited them on a Sunday afternoon. Dianne gave Barbara a card with a picture of two motorcycles and three helmets, one obviously too small. The caption read:

Looks like we’re going to need that sidecar!

“But the helmet is blue” said Barbara to Jim. Do you know that it’s a boy?”

Jim and Dianne shook their heads. “No, but we have a good feeling; we’re not going to find out until the birth.”

“A surprise is nice,” said Barbara. “So long as the baby is healthy.”

“All our friends think it’s going to be a boy.”

“Then plan on a girl” said Tony. “That’s just the way life works.”


Dianne went into labor two weeks early. Jim was stuck at work helping one of his employees who was injured by an exhaust pipe. By the time he got the phone call, there was a pileup on 880 from an accident. He tried to keep Dianne calm on the cell phone.

“Don’t worry honey, I’ll be there in time to help you. Are your parents there?”

“Only Barbara and Tony. My parents should be here soon though. Jim, I love


“I love you too sweetheart. I’ll get there as soon as possible.”

The pain got so strong that the doctors gave Dianne something to relax her, and then rushed her into the delivery room. As Dianne relaxed, she mumbled something to the nurse.

“OK, I got it. You just relax mom. We’re going to do a C-section.”

Jim rushed into the hospital in time to see the nurse gently placing his new daughter into one of the cribs in the nursery room. He was overcome with emotion, shedding more than a few tears. He motioned to the nurse to bring her over to the glass divider.

“Can you bring her over to me?”

The nurse carried the pink bundle over to her new father. She had blue eyes, blonde hair and an adorable button nose. This was the greatest moment of his life, even trumping his wedding day. He had so many plans for her; to give her everything she needed until the day he would walk her down the aisle at her wedding. Jim stood there smiling and crying at the same time. Then he noticed the little ankle tag around her leg.

Prius Elizabeth Mariani, 6 lbs. 4 oz., born on April 15, 2013 at 4:24pm.

“NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO” he screamed and ran to his wife’s recovery room.