Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Chapter 3 : The Chronicles of Tulip Touzie

*Disclaimer: If you are just now beginning to follow this blog, scroll down and begin with Chapter 1 for your enjoyment.*


Rose Touzie was completely unraveled when she heard that Tulip would be retiring in two days time. When Tulip first made the announcement, Rose was excited that she might inherit some company in her cozy little home. Rose was a single mother. In fact, she had no idea who Tulip's father was due to some opiates and a Rick Springfield concert. She told Tulip that her father was a famous rock star whose name she could never divulge or he would cut off her child support. Tulip was satisfied by this explanation, much to Rose's delight, so she never had to think of another story for her dear daughter.

Rose could not believe that Tulip did not desire to retire in the comforts of her own home, but rather to depend on the 'menorlites' or whatever she called them, to provide her shelter. Rose Touzie had spent a great deal of time organizing her household while Tulip was away at college. She satisfactorily compartmentalized everything in her home into plastic baggies which were available from 'snack' size to ten gallons. Rose thought that if Tulip had come home first and seen how organized everything was, maybe she'd just want to stay. She hated herself for not discovering baggies sooner. She had previously used shoeboxes which were impractical space wise and also got a musty smell after several years. Not to mention the fact that cardboard allegedly attracts cock roaches. Rose Touzie never had roach issues.

Rose also used her baggies to package and sell her artwork online. Rose worked from home these days. She always knew she'd run her own business, it was just a matter of figuring out what that business was. Rose had tried a handful of jobs in her lifetime. Her first job was a switchboard operator for a plumbing business. She found it to be far too mindless and quit in the summer of '66. She then attempted to be a poet but only one poem was ever published. She couldn't understand why they didn't publish more. In fact, she was an excellent Haiku writer. Her best poem was published in the Alabama Daily Standard on March 13, 1969. It read as follows:

Butterflies have wings
I use legs to get around
Jesus still loves you

She worked in retail for the next five years but never in the same store for more than a year.
Her fear of 'secret shoppers' was so severe that she asked every customer who troubled her for information if they were secret shoppers. And when they said, "No", she only grilled them more. Then, she would annoy the hell out of them by sharing all of the product knowledge that she had; most of which was either blatantly obvious or made up. "These are Calvin Klein Jeans. The designer's name is Calvin Klein. He makes great clothes. And Shoes. And Socks and belts. He makes other things too. I have a friend who went to college with Calvin Klein". She found that 'secret shoppers' were way to frequent in retail and it made her uneasy. It inspired her final Haiku:

When shopping can hurt
We all wish we were perfect
Jesus still loves you

After converting to Catholocism in the fall of '76, she took up a small office job at Our Lady Of the Palm Trees Church in Panama City, Florida. She found peace in working with the cupcake eating office ladies. Rose also had a lot of free time which she used for arts and crafts. Many of her co-workers admired her dangling shrinky-dink earings and requested to purchase a pair. Seeing the multitude of opportunities shrinky-dink had provided artistically, Rose Touzie started her own web site dedicated mostly to selling shrinky-dink jewelry and various pieces of art where she glued things to other things. For one project, she glued artwork from old greeting cards to used coasters and then shellacked them, and sold the coasters as a set. It was a cost-effective business as Rose Touzie had collected a lot of clutter in her lifetime. Also, she was one of very few shrinky-dinkers in distribution. Had Tulip come home to retire, she could have helped with distribution. Tulip thought that shrinky-dink was pretty cool in a retro sort of way and never took off the Frito's bracelet that Rose had made her when she was a little girl. Rose wished that she had sento Tulip some jewelry from the religious icon selection. Prayer card shrinky-dinkery had style and substance.