Birthday Party for the Ocean
Miami Beach

David and I received your invite to celebrate the Ocean's birthday and were quite tickled with the notion. We decided that since my Halloween costume- "a girl eaten by a shark"- was both an epic success (viewer questioning and participation were rampant that night) and a terrible failure ( construction-wise the cardboard and duct tape shark was falling apart in every way imaginable), that we would take a stab at somehow giving "Sharkey" a final hurrah.

However, it was not meant to be a collaboration. Perhaps this was for the better. You see, David went off on a work trip and left me to my own devices. This in turn helped make my celebration for the Ocean a character building activity of sorts on many levels. For one, I am quite timid about leaving the apartment and exploring the world on my own. I blame my anti-social tendencies on this. When going out I have to muster up the courage. Now add to this carrying around a life size prop and we have the makings of an attention whoring performance piece.

At any rate, to the beach I trudged, Sharkey in tow. I set him upright in the sand and began to take pictures of him as the waves lapped at the shore.

Immediately a small crowd of curious tourists formed, but no one was as intrepid in approaching me as Jerry. Approaching me, he asked what I was doing. I was unsure as to how to respond, but Jerry beat me to it. "Shark!", he bellowed. He began walking around Sharkey, trying to make heads and tails of the totem before him ( I might add that Terry is/was A) a wanderer of the world- for lack of a better term B) quite fond of natural beauty - he kept mentioning God's gifts and howling at bikini-clad girls walking past- and C) inebriated- a perfect state for a party guest to be in if you ask me). Then, Jerry's interactions became more bold. He put his head inside Sharkey's mouth. He rearranged Sharkey's one remaining pectoral fin. He even went so far as to put Sharkey on and wade into the water until Sharkey fell apart in pieces. In the end, all that remained was a heavy and wet pile of sandy cardboard which Jerry was kind enough to haul to a nearby trash can before asking me for a spare buck. I gave him a $10.00. That and an air blown kiss that sent him hootin and hollerin' up Ocean Drive.

In the end, I think it was a perfect way to celebrate the Ocean- me, a cardboard shark, and a lonely stranger. Uncannily enough, David even got to join in on the fun when he unexpectedly called at the end of our session and Jerry asked to speak to him about his "sexy woman." (Meaning me, I guess.) Couldn't have been a neater package than if it had been tied up with string and topped with a bow. Happy Birthday Ocean!