One woman, lots of paint and hundreds of tiles. If you're here because you found a painted tile, it's yours to keep.

Monday, May 25, 2009

No More Reruns

Lucy pretends to listen while Jill rambles on incessantly about her crappy job, her latest no-good boyfriend, her meddling mother, her crazy neighbors and all the drama that constantly swirls around her life ... Lucy tries to muster concern, but sometimes she just gets tired of all the reruns. She realizes that people, much like TV sitcoms and movies, fall into categories. They might be a comedy, or a romance, or in Jill's case, a full-fledged drama but with no real closure. Lucy doesn't know how many times she can keep hearing those same stories over and over again. She's hoping for a new season, or a sequel, in which Jill finally learns from her mistakes, solves her problems and moves on to a place with new stories that aren't so draining.

Meanwhile Lucy is hiding under the sink in the ladies' room at Dough Boys Pizza on Southeast 17th Street in Fort Lauderdale. It's quiet down there, but it's kinda dark and a little dull. She's hoping someone will come and take her away to somewhere new, someplace cheerier, a place where there are no reruns.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Purr-fect Dilemma

Heide met someone she really loved but was afraid to get too close to him for fear he would discover her deepest secret: When she feels really happy and content, she purrs like a cat. She tries real hard not to do that but if she completely relaxes and lets her guard down, it just happens, usually as she is drifting happily off to sleep.

She blames Blackie, who had been sleeping curled up next to her for years. The purring must have somehow rubbed off on her in kinda the same way Blackie took to snoring. But Heide had no idea how to explain this to Joey. Then one Sunday afternoon while lying in a grassy lakeside field after a local hopscotch tournament, she involuntarily succumbed to her overwhelming feeling of content and drifted off and began purring.

When she awoke Joey was looking at her with a silly little grin on his face, and suddenly she realized she must have slipped up and begun purring. But Joey just seemed relieved. "And I thought I was the only person on the planet who purred," he said laughing.

Heidi is in one of the restrooms at Ice Box in Miami Beach. Not the cool one with all the nooks and crannies and hiding places, but the other one. She's beneath a stack of paper hand towels on a table just to the left as you walk in. If you listen real close, you can hear her purring under there.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Ginny remembers looking through the old family photo albums that her mom had spent an entire summer organizing. One album for instance, would have several pages devoted to one child, with yearly school pictures from kindergarten clear on through high school. Ginny still remembers how all of her siblings would laugh at her photos and the one thing that remained constant year after year -- her big bushy eyebrows, the ones her mother always called "Irish eyebrows."

Her brother once got so hysterical laughing about the eyebrow pics that Ginny thought their mom might have to slap him just to stop him from laughing so hard he couldn't breathe. "Look," he says, "pointing to a baby picture of Ginny. You were born with those eyebrows." Unfortunately, it was true. She hardly had any hair on her head ... She was all eyebrows ... and they remained bushy right through 7th grade but in 8th grade she was hoping to change all that. Her brother, however, told her she was stuck with those eyebrows .... that they would just keep getting bushier until they were one big fat hairy brow. When he could see that Ginny was about to cry, he'd say, "Don't worry Ginny, you're still very special ... in a short-bus kinda way."

Ginny had always hated her eyebrows and pleaded with her mom to let her pluck them. Her mom, however, wouldn't let her anywhere near a tweezers, insisting that for every hair plucked, two more would grow back. "Besides," she told Ginny, "those eyebrows give you strength and character. They're what make you stand out. You just need to learn to make them work for you, and you'll figure that out with time."

But if there was one thing Ginny didn't want, it was to stand out. After standing out her whole life, she simply wanted to blend in, like camouflage. As for making her eyebrows work for her, she hadn't a clue how that would work. But as is often the case, it turned out that her mom was right. Ginny eventually learned to accept herself -- Irish eyebrows and all. Not that it was a smooth transition. As a teen, Ginny was frequently cited for behavioral problems and eventually was made to take the short bus to a special school for kids who who'd been getting in trouble. Fortunately for Ginny, she felt right at home with the group of outcasts she met on the short bus and made fast friends. eventually she recruited a few of them to start the bagpipe punk band she lovingly named Irish Eyebrows and the Short Buses. They got signed shortly after releasing their first CD, When Irish Eyebrows Are Smiling, and have since been touring in a short bus that runs on vegetable oil.

Ginny, now known simply as "Eyebrow," is happier than she has ever been and is overjoyed that many of her listeners refuse to pluck their eyebrows too. When she stands on a stage and looks out at the masses of bushy eyebrows, she smiles inside and can almost hear the voice of her sweet departed mother saying what she'd always say to Ginny when what she really meant was "I told ya so." ... "How now, eyebrow??"

Ginny is in an employment newspaper box near the mailbox at Southland Shopping Center on State Road 84 in Fort Lauderdale.