The Genial Beer Garden Host

On the picnic table, there are four empty beer bottles lined up like bowling pins. Larry Spacek grabs the quartet of Corona Extras, and before you can say “cheers,” he tosses them into the trash. It’s early Saturday morning, and the Bohemian Hall & Beer Garden is still picking up the pieces from last night’s party. Larry, a Czech immigrant, is new at his job as the general manager of the city’s oldest beer garden. He’s here six to seven days a week at all hours learning the ins and outs of running the century-old establishment. Right …

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The Lady and the Parrot

There will be poop. Laurie Lieberman pops open the top of the green plastic carrying case, which looks like something Lady Gaga would use to tote her stuff around in. She asks for a roll of paper towels. Let’s get a couple of things straight; th…

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The Single Supermom

The top of the black upright piano is crowded with framed photographs of a cute little boy with big beautiful eyes. Aly Lizardo walks past its dark corner into the light of the living room, where she settles into her spot, the overstuffed chaise longue. The little boy — her little boy, the one everyone calls Peter — isn’t here. When she says his name, she puts on a brave face, but there’s a catch in her voice. Peter, you see, isn’t ever coming back home. While she’s here, he’s in the Hudson Valley, living in a …

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