The Squiggler

There ought to be a sign that says, “Watch your head.” Instead, what you see straight in front of you — before you see stars — when you enter Bill Conroy Lindsay‘s subterranean shotgun-style studio are these words: Gay Ahead. Before you get the joke, you realize that there’s no wiggle room in Bill’s squiggle space. The walls in his white-rabbit hole are lined with heating pipes and paintings that showcase his signature squiggles — life lines that twist and turn and circle around themselves with no beginning or end. Photo by Nancy A. Ruhling Bill has always been a&…

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The Garage Guy

In a squeezed-in space the size of an SUV’s backseat, Lou Farina is perched on an ancient chair manning the phone. “It’s the red, white and blue building on the corner,” he tells a customer. “You can’t miss it.” Photo by Nancy A. Ruhling Lou’s the owner of L&M Auto Service. He’s right about that. L&M Auto Service is striped like an American flag; when the breeze blows, you’d swear it’s waving hello. Peeling linoleum, grimy knotty-pine paneling and a grease monkey bathroom sink that should be labeled “George …

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The World-Grown Woman

On the back patio, on the way to the garden, there’s a bowl filled with cat food. Joan Garrison started setting it out for the strays when her own brood, Thelma, Louise and Neeky, got picky. “It was too expensive to throw away,” …

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The Reset Kid

It was when Mark Cruz lost everything — his job, his girlfriend, his grandfather, his band and his faith in himself and in his god — that he found himself. Up until 2010 and 2011, when all this life-changing stuff threw Mark a curve ball he couldn’t catch, he was a pretty happy guy. And, when he thinks about it, he says that that was a bad thing. You see, if all these dramatic departures had not happened, Mark wouldn’t be sitting in the offices of his new company, Fling Design. Photo by Nancy A. Ruhling Mark went from the…

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