The Epicenter of My Universe

The Epicenter of My Universe in The Mid-80's.

Behind the writing of every great book there is a great story.

“Beowulf” was written by some drunk dude following a Steppenwolf concert in the year 942.

“On The Road” was written on Route 66 by Jack Kerouac, who was allegedly hit 136 times by passing cars.

Charles Dickens wrote “A Tale of Two Cities” in Minneapolis and St. Paul holding his fountain pen in the toes of his right foot. The original title was “A Tale of Twin Cities & Terribly Painful Toe Cramps”. His publisher made him change both the title and the plot significantly.

Today I share a few entries from a book I wrote in the mid-late 80’s entitled “The Parking Lot Letters (One Man’s Pursuit of Quality Parking)”.

The book has been published by various copy machines I have known over the years. The idea for the book began when the parking lot management company I used when employed by Bozell, Jacobs, Kenyon & Eckhardt Advertising in Dallas (Las Colinas, actually, a business person’s Disney World) raised their monthly rates. Everyone at the agency bitched and moaned about this action. I decided to take a different tact.

I became a champion of all things related to parking. With every monthly parking payment check I sent, I would include a personal letter written to the “Letter Opening Department” of the parking lot management company. I designed my own visually arresting letterheads. The voice of the letters was an obsessive, passionate fan of parking, and my particular parking lot. Early letters featured arbitrary underlining of words– just because it tickled me.

Later letters got more fantastical and deeper into the character’s psyche. Obsessive anything is always fun.

For two years I wrote these good people my manic letters. Then, I left that job to pursue quality parking elsewhere. Free parking! Did I ever hear from them– the parking lot people? Yes, I did get one letter toward the end of my run, but I suspect it was a prank written by someone inside the agency. It was too hip, too inside, too too.

A few months after I left, a friend went  into the parking lot management company office to pay his bill. He told me he saw one of my letters posted on the wall. He asked about the letter and reported the parking lot management guy said he hadn’t heard from me in awhile… and that he really missed my letters. When I heard this, I balled like a baby.

Enjoy these nibbles, feel free to share your favorite parking stories, and may all your parking spots be      W     I       D      E        !

First Letter/PLL

Sad/PLL

Other Man/PLL

NYC-Parking/PLL


     A despondent Bernard Madoff is reportedly on suicide watch.  He’s been trumped, by a mannequin.

    The magical Greek fishing cap that bestows instant Fonzie coolness to its wearer has finally surfaced and landed on the noggin of a mannequin working at a Beall’s Department Store in Port Arthur, Texas. The cap was owned by a deposed Nigerian prince and Bernie Madoff paid the prince’s lawyer $50 billion for the cool headgear (plus a few extra million for shipping and handling)… all to no avail. The mannequin received the surprise package yesterday and has refused comment on how the Greek fishing cap came into his possession. Authorities did not press the issue since the mannequin “looked so wicked cool we didn’t want to be pests or anything.”

Now that's coooooool! Aaaaaaaayyyyyyyyy!!!!!!  

      “This just isn’t fair,” said an angry Madoff, “I paid my good hard-earned money and I’ve got nothing in return. Nothing! I’ve lost everything I owned to a charlatan. There ought to be a law against these kind of shenanigans!” Madoff said as tears streamed down his face and mucus trickled from his furry nostrils, grossing out reporters and bystanders alike. “There oughta be laws against this,” blurted Madoff as ear wax leaked out of his audio caves. Reporters and bystanders hurled.

    Meanwhile, the mannequin has become an instant celebrity with people making pilgrimages to see him and bask in his utter uber-coolness. Some who have witnessed the mannequin in Greek fishing cap claim he is “even cooler than Fonzie was”, while others say the mannequin is “cooler than Potsie, Ralph, or Ritchie, most def, but maybe not quite Fonzie cool. Well, O.K., maybe Fonzie cool but not cooler.”

    Madoff yearns to travel to Port Arthur to see for himself but cannot travel due to his house arrest. Irony police are standing watch on him. The world exhales and life goes on.

     In a startling development, it appears ex-president George W. Bush may have his sights set on wearing the Greek fishing cap de coolness from the mysterious deposed Nigerian prince.

     Unnamed White House sources have leaked the contents of the letter Bush left for President Barack Obama in the Oval Office. They are disclosed here in a Lint Screen exclusive:

Ex-Prez making play for Greek fishing cap

Letter reveals Ex-Prez making play for Greek fishing cap.

     “Dear Barack,

Enjoy your stay in Washington. I’ll be in Texas, spreading my Fonzie cool in my Greek fishing cap. It’s supposed to be coming my way real soon, baby. Aaayyyyy! Oh, by the way, next time you go shopping get some milk. The carton in the fridge has turned bad. Bye, W.”

     Bernie Madoff refused commenting on the story except to say he was seeking some new investors for a “can’t lose investment opportunity… all it takes is $50 billion.”