I like the idea of everyone lighting up and smoking away the national debt and modern strife. Damn, what if it really were that simple?
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I remember this little mannequin which was sold in front of me to a grinning new owner. We the employees used to look at the child's horrid scowl and with the best will in the world the dressers despaired of ever making the child look appealing in the store window. Check him out, he looks positively demonic.
Eventually I was offered a job as a police dispatcher making a few dollars an hour more, and I tried to negotiate a raise at Fast Buck's but the private sector failed to see my worth. I went to the police department and now more than ever I am glad of that choice.
I will miss the place as we all will, and when a chain store that offers no challenges and presents a bland familiar shopping mall face to Duval Street opens in it's place we will mutter about the good old days.
Some say the good old days were after World War Two when the Depression was put to rest and optimism swept the land. Other say they were in the 70s or the 80s or the 90s and you will find the gold old days were when the speaker first set eyes on Key West. For some, in the not too distant future, these will be the good old days.
When I was shipping furniture out the back the Blue Paper published from the little shack at the top of the stairs. I once met Jimmy Buffet back here, he shares the building with Falcone and often hung around here. I had no idea who he was and only discovered his identity when the trembling women in the store pointed him out with awe in their voices. I saw first hand what wealth and fame and a reputation do to the rest of us.