Friday, December 28, 2007

Silence Is Golden

Dear Readers, this 'live blogging' thing has suddenly come to my attention. Would you be interested in a regular Manola show? Twat would it be about? And what time of the day? Please leave comments below, but make sure they are not below the belt. I would be happy to entertain this possibility ... Already one of my loyal fans suggested a Dr. Annie Steelclit bulletin board, but I think we can take it next level, especially with other blogger guests. Remember, it's a little me, a little Miami Beach ... and maybe, a little you.

What say?

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Shoe Shopping in Dubai

Just wanted to say thank you to SO MANY people who have made a difference in my life this year. I will list none here, because there are so many and I would hate to leave anyone out. What is this, an Oscar's acceptance speech? Alright, already! You know who you are and I heart you! Wishing my readers, clients and friends much love, health and prosperity now and in the year to come.

And yes, let's go shoe shopping!

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Thursday, December 20, 2007

Erotic Verse: Succubus

She was no ordinary succubus.
Late into the night
Through cold, electric clouds
She flew with broken wings
On currents kindled by his dreams.
And finally, descending upon
His yearning body, she whispered:
“I’m late, my love, but tender is the morning.”

related: Night of the Meiga

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Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Erotic Verse: River

His words flow easily
A river of threaded silk
Could I be the spool
Embraced by his verse
And wrap this shawl of
Golden words around
My shivering heart


Sunday, December 16, 2007

Manola's Meatballs

A possible alternative to the traditional chef uniform at Manola's restaurant.

I want to open a restaurant on South Beach called Manola's Meatballs. If I did, would you come and eat? All this talk about about food got me thinking that Jeffrey Chowderhead of Vagina Grill Management should consider investing in this deep-fried golden opportunity.

Hmm, I'm trying to think of a place with Paula Deen hospitality minus a Jerry Springer brawl. Good gourmet food that doesn't require a bank loan to afford, yet would appeal to the palate of Mario Batali. I'd love the hostess to be Anthony Bourdain in drag and I'd want Andrew Zimmerman to be the sommelier of offal. A place where a red carpet bouncer doesn't let anyone in with a BMI under 18 yet doesn't feed Mr. Creosote his last wafer-thin mint. A restaurant where cornstarch and lard are used in moderation. A hot spot that's not so hot -- kind of like McBarton G -- fast food with a xanax edge, the kind of thing Paris Hilton would eat in prison, if she were incarcerated for not buying enough art work at Art Basel. In short, a festive gathering place in between my Cuban mother's hospitality and the slickness of the Ritz, where "shut up and eat" is the motto and most importantly, no pretentious bullshit. Everybody's a celebrity at Manola's Meatballs -- we'll even say that with a hot-red neon sign!

Oh, I exaggerate! What would us regular schmucks love in a South Beach restaurant, besides meatballs? I'm serious! Leave comments.

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Miami Missiletoe

On a sultry winter evening, not a cocktail was stirring. He was about to make his big tongue move when suddenly ...

miami beach kiss palm tree coconut ... a big-ass coconut fell smack on her head! Moral of the story ladies, never hang out with tongue-wagging lascivious men under a coconut tree ... do that at Club Deuce!

PS ... we don't need mistletoe in Miami. It's not cold as a witch's tit, so we don't have to swap spit at doorways just to stay warm. We kiss just because we're a bunch of ho's!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Food Porn at Tuscan Steak

Why is this woman smiling? Satisfied from an incredible meal, meeting groovy people AND having her photo taken by the fabulous Miami Fever!

Last Sunday, Gus and Michelle from Miami Beach 411 generously a hosted a dinner for 18 local bloggers, as well as contributors, staff members, forum participants and business associates of 411. The soiree was held at the Tuscan Steak on Washington Avenue just South of 5th. I wanted to write some comments about the food being orgasmic, but charming Verticus, whom I had the pleasure of meeting that night, beat me to it! Let me delight you with some choice quotes here.
"The food will make an athiest cry and thank God for the opportunity to eat such food as this."
"Then comes the three mushroom risotto (yes, we're gluttons and it will only get worse). It's finished with white truffle oil and shaved parmesan reggiano and it's like having sex in public without getting arrested."
Oh, it did get worse for us gluttons, but Verticus' food porn only gets better -- foreplay included! Please stop by Miamivisionblogorama and treat yourself to a hilarious and sexy restaurant review. You may even get all hot and bothered! You'll definitely salivate.

I'm sure that anyone who has tried the food at Tuscan Steak would agree that in some cases, some things are definitely better than sex. Dinner was two days ago but I still feel satisfied, evening though I'm fantasizing about the next time I may have that melt-in-your-mouth mushroom risotto and tender T-bone steak. Oh, baby!

The decor is elegant and the lighting is just subdued enough to feel quite cozy -- in short a great place for a hot date. Be prepared to fall hard for the food, if not your dinner companion. Prices are a little steep but worth every penny on a special occasion.

I want to thank Gus and Michelle for the opportunity to share such an amazing meal with incredibly creative local blogging talent. Here is a list of the bloggers who attended, in no particular order: Ipanemic, Miami Rhapsody, All Purpose Dark, Stuck on the Palmetto, Dan Renzi, Fanless,, Blenderlaw, Restaurant Gal, Miami Condo Investments, Miami Vision Blogorama, A Mom, A Blog and the Life In-Between, South Beach Real Estate Blog, Burnett's Urban Etiquette and Miami Fever.

If you decide to go to Tuscan Steak make sure you mention Miami Beach 411. You can also stop by 411 to read more user reviews or conveniently make an online reservation (scroll down to the end of the page to fill out a form).

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Friday, December 07, 2007

Miami Beach Parking Receipt

miami beach parking receiptEveryone knows I hate driving ... so that explains why I missed the Miami Beach parking fake receipt website scandal! Oh nose! Scott has links galore to my Manola mafia bloggers who've covered the topic. It's kind of dumb, yes, but I couldn't resist! Do you think the meter maid will notice any discrepancy?

PS ... city of Miami Beach, I love you so much ... but I preferred the old meters, where I could easily insert my parking card, conveniently purchased at at the George Jetson Publix by Purdy Avenue, where shopping is such a pleasure, I have multiple orgasms just going down the carbohydrates aisle. Anyway, you don't give money back with the new system, which sucks, ok? The whole point of buying the card was that you could basically park and go, stress-free.

Plus, it's so much easier to have a card rather than having to scrounge for change. Such an issue to save quarters for the laundry, already! And then sometimes the machines don't accept plastic. What a pain in the ass, even! I think I should talk to our new mayor Matti Bower about this. How about an item on the next commission meeting?

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Thursday, December 06, 2007

Sexcrunch: Oy! Panties and His Royal Member

All the news that's fit for bed, served between the sheets. Don't ever say you aren't getting any!

Photo by the always fantabulous Miami Fever.
Oy ...

In the "no shit, Sherlock" school of science and philosophy, Reuters reports that people who have sex might have more sex and because they're actually doing things that involve sex, there may be problems associated with sexual activity. Look it, I took chemistry in high school. I also may have swapped spit with my high school sweetheart. There were chemical reactions ... I get it!

OK, I'm dripping with facetiousness, but factor in there a drop of truth, buddy. Sex is a normal, human thing. Abstinence-only sex education is like telling a dog to get all soy on you all of a sudden. Realistic? Tell a barking quadruped to not eat sirloin or chew on a T-bone and what do you expect? Wise up and make it real!

More Oy ...

Pittsburgh attorney Todd Hollis is sick and tired of all the bitching over at, owned by South Florida local Tasha Cunningham. He couldn't get justice in Pennsylvania because of a jurisdiction issue, but is hoping that reviving the lawsuit in Miami will deliver $75,000 in damages.

Oy vay, this makes me crazy!

So, call me crazy. Playing devil's advocate here.

OK, the guy is pissed off because some women have said stupid shit about him, but it is what it is. Women gossiping about their asshole ex-boyfriends are going to rip them a new one. Obviously, you weren't labeled Prince Charming for a reason. But ...

Call me even crazier -- despite the web site's claim that it's supposed to empower women, a cause I support, of course -- ". . . build your self-esteem, find true love and empower yourself to become the powerful woman you really are!" -- I would never in a million years base my opinion of a human being on what someone I don't know or trust said online. On the innernets, who can you really trust? No matter how you slice it, dating is a crap shoot, ladies and gents. Roll with the punches and act like civilized human beings.

Finally, a nice reprieve from Oy ...

On a lighter note, Raina Mcleod from New Times got her tata autographed by Ron Jeremy! Gives whole new meaning to "brush with celebrity."

You know what, with so much OY! I think I'm going to Greece!

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Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Eat Your HooHa

Would you drive a guy away who is willing to eat your hooha all night? I mean, this inspired me to song. Rogers and Hammerstein, I didn't mean to bastardize South Pacific or Some Enchanted Evening or Some Erectile Dysfunction or whatever.

PS ... we realize that ED is a serious condition. We do not mean to make fun of those who are genuinely suffering.

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Sunday, December 02, 2007

Beauty and the Bush

The reason why King Arthur worked for the Romans and defeated the Saxons is because Clive Owen is really hot and the ladies waxed their pussy hair! And you thought Magna Carta was all about democracy! Little did you know ...

"I believe that Condoleeza Rice does not shave, but I believe that Hillary will."

"Cleopatra slept with the entire Roman Legion but at least one of them looked like Russel Crowe!"

"My vagina is the size of a football field. Trim one hair at a time, honey."

OK, seriously, I am talking to my friend DearYvette on the phone right now about the virtues and vices of excessive (or as I would say -- "natural" --) pubic hair growth. Apparently, I am a total barbarian, because I believe in the beauty of the bush. And a handful of fellas whom have woken up this sleeping beauty through the thicket, may have agreed -- although no third parties are willing to corroborate.

Even though DearYvette says that the fur bikini is a thing of the past, I must say that when we come into the next ice age, this is what will keep my hoochie and progeny warm. You waxed up girl, yes you: you will be using the wax from that candle just to keep the water coming in from the damn. (Because we're all going to die from global warming, don't ya know?)

You see? Maybe the reason why the planet is warming is because all these hair-fearing women are creating excessive heat from burning wax to shave their pussies! Think about it: there are like hundreds of bazillion active pussies in the world right now!!! You are creating major carbon points just to keep the lawn trimmed!!! Al Gore, hello? This is clear as mud! Why don't you see the pussy from the bush?

Have you shaved the kitty lately? Have you cut the rug? Come on, admit it. I have always thought that a perfectly glammed-up vagina looks like a pre-pubescent plucked chicken. Troy and Christian from Nip/Tuck, what do you think about that?

It is well known in the universe of Manola's garden that a smooth green lawn in a lovely British cottage with tea is a nice, but however, an overgrown tropical rainforest is always out of control. I'm all for a life of moderation ... tucked away, but a little plush.

But plucked chicken and bleached butt?

Excessive, too much vanity my friends! Even though the sun don't shine in there, I don't want your genitals to shine brighter than the sun!

Could OMG there be possibly a little somethin' somethin' left to be desired? Which in sex talk translates to: "could your asshole please harbor a little obscurity?"

What do you think? How has social media influenced your personal groin grooming habits? How has "easy access" influenced your sense of what's erotic?

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Will Work for Sex

Will Work for Sex

When people ask what it's like to live on Miami Beach, all I can say is why would I be inspired to do this blog!

Do you think this chick needs a job?

The Real South Beach Diet

But wait, maybe she's too busy being picked up by these guys!

The New SoBe Dining Trend

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Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Planet Manola: Club Douche, Balls and Dating

Random news, commentary and photographs. Updated at least once every menstrual cycle, if not more frequently. If you are easily offended, do not read on!

Learn more about Club Deuce here.

Well my birthday week was quite intense. As you can see, I grew a whole new head of hair, courtesy of Beatnix, a new and vintage clothing and accessory store located at 1149 Washington Avenue. The shop is great for all your drag queen needs -- wigs, fake eyelashes, fishnets, platform heels and more at reasonable prices!


Flickr Photo Download: mariapkge.jpg
Uploaded with Skitch! Original photo by the fabulous Shveckle.

Well, even though this blog is a single woman's guide to chronic living, I wanted to point out some very cool things going on in the world where testosterone reigns supreme. Remember breast cancer awareness month? How about health problems involving the other two ballsy objects we love to fondle? Even though November is almost over, it's not too late to sponsor Darren Rowse of Problogger for Movember.


Speaking of playing with balls -- of the pool and ping-pong variety -- my new friend Scott from Ipanemic has shared some candid tales about dating in South Beach. Navigating the relationship waters in this town full of transient folk is not easy. Such courage I do admire!

Read his first, second and third dates, respectively.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Beaujolais ... WHAT?

While getting ready for a Beaujolais Nouveau party, I pondered the curious thoughts that the syllables "beau/jo" brought to mind. In Spanish, the word "bollo" (pronounced bo-yo) means two different things across the Atlantic. In Spain, it refers to a sweet bread roll, but in Cuba and Miami? Something else entirely!

Read more about my adventures with "bollo" at Meridian.

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Saturday, November 10, 2007

EXCLUSIVE! Manola Interviews Maria! Scandalous!

manola blablabanik
Manola Blablablanik interviews Maria, the author of Sex and the Beach, on the occasion of her fortieth birthday. Bonus Seesmic video added below!

Manola: Happy birthday to my favorite ho! Tell me, what does it feel like to be a withered old hag with dried-up ovaries?

Maria: What are you talking about you cheap tramp, I'm only 40 and I feel better than ever!

Manola: Oh come on, get real. You're supposed to have a mid-life crisis, babe. By Hollywood standards, you're already a prime nip/tuck candidate. And to add insult to injury, you can't even be a MILF because you've failed to push out a baby. Double whammy!

Maria: Listen, bitch, the only "double whammy" here are the cheeks on my big fat Cuban ass! Manola, I can't believe you buy into that stupid shit! First of all, I'm still HOT and what makes me even HOTTER is the fact that I'm wiser and no longer a twenty-something Britney trainwreck about to happen, but a real woman with her high heels firmly planted on the ground. Hello? I survived the doormat years with grace, chutzpah and barely a wrinkle!

Manola: What about rug rats?

Maria: If it's meant to be, I'll manifest a solid, loving relationship with an extraordinary man who also desires a child. Call me crazy, but why should I settle for a spermsickle up my yin yang instead of a hot beef injection from someone who adores me?

Manola: Well yeah, a romp with your hunk is the best way to be sperminated, but what if ...

Maria: Look it. No one really has a baby, you know. You have a human being and you shouldn't bang one out just because your uterus can keep it alive for the first nine months. It's a serious matter ... can we talk about something else?

Manola: Ok ... calm down. Damn girl, this is supposed to be a fluffy interview! So, speaking of "extraordinary men" who are you banging these days?

Maria: Well, I know you're not going to believe this, but I've been celibate for over a year.

Manola: SHUT UP! GET OUT! You are so fucking lying to me!

Maria: Nope. I actually took a vow of celibacy about a year ago to devote myself to a spiritual healing practice. Celibacy isn't just a hiatus from sex, but also from emotional entanglements that distract you from facing the void. Sounds scary, doesn't it?

Manola: Sounds BORING!

Maria: Actually, taking personal inventory is the best fucking thing any woman can do for herself. The results are quite sexy -- I'm more confident, secure, at peace with myself and the world and far more capable of loving.

Manola: Oh, who cares about all that rubbish. Come on, a whole year without sex? Not even a little smooch?

Maria: I've lived life well (wink, wink) so I haven't missed much.

Manola: I don't believe you.

Maria: Well, I might have been walking on the beach and accidentally slipped on someone's penis a couple of times, but that's none of your fucking business!

Manola: Oh come on, dish!

Maria: No.

Manola: I bet that "slip-up" was a blogger.

Maria: Shut the fuck up.

Manola: Does he follow you on Twitter?

Maria: Cut it out.

Manola: Oh wait! I bet he's a dude in one of your cartoons ...

Maria: I am SO going to walk out on this interview!

Manola: Ok, ok ... FINE. So how could you write about sex if you weren't into it?

Maria: Ah, that's the magic of the craft, grasshopper. When I started this blog two years ago in October, I was actually deeply depressed and had only just begun to refine the art of being reclusive. Never would've guessed it, huh?

Manola: What? Wait a minute. Now I feel shitty. Did you create me just to vent your frustrations? Is that all I am to you? I feel so used!

Maria: Manola, there's a little bit of me in you and little bit of you in me, but we're not the same person. One fine day, I'll grow up and hook up with a deserving man, but you, my dear, must always be single.

Manola: Always single, huh? That sounds like fun! But Maria, if you don't have sex, how the hell am I going to get some dick vicariously? I mean, you don't plan on keeping your hoochie hidden under lock and key for the rest of your life, do you?

Maria: Don't be ridiculous! Of course I want some dick, but I want some heart, too. This isn't about morals, it's about getting to that point in your life when you don't do dinner and bullshit anymore.

Manola: So let's go to Club Douche tonight, get real drunk and pick up some ...

Maria: No way. I'm not a cougar who's into prowling bars, even though the chastity belt is off. You swig a wine cooler with the tourist boys, honey. I prefer to sip a fine, aged scotch. I'm perfectly content to be who I am, where I am, how I am ...

Manola: Ugh. You and your stupid spiritual crap! Sometimes you sound like Oprah and Dr. Phil's love child. Why can't we just talk about penis and pussy?

Maria: Dude, we have been talking about penis and pussy. Sheesh!

Manola: OK, well, hmm ... I was hoping that by being a nosy bitch I could get a sordid confession out of you, but I see you've decided to be all deep thoughts instead of deep throat.

Maria: Honey, at my age, "classy" is the new porn.

Manola: Well, Maria, I'd love to wish you a very happy 40th birthday and hope that you'll get laid soon with some "nice" guy. Geez ... picky, aren't we?

Maria: I've learned so much from you -- you impudent, foul-mouthed slut! You're resilient and aren't afraid to speak your mind. You've been one of the greatest joys in my life. Thanks to you, Manola.

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Monday, November 05, 2007

What's In Your Bag?

By special request from Salome's Mom, here's the content of Manola's purse.

Ladies, there are certain items you must have in your purse at all times, especially if you live in Miami Beach.

"Regarding Manolo Blaniks: fuck vanity!"

"We have a problem in Miami. It's the occasional visit from Matthew McConaughey."

"If you don't want to use a cheap-ass plastic Japanese sex toy, use a sweet potato. It's a little rough around the edges, but we ladies like a little feeling."

"Chef Robert Irvine and my refrigerator. I'd love to be a sandwich."

"Fuck botox. You just need to perfect the big fat Cuban chongalicious lipstick technique."

"If you see an asshole, don't give him your phone number."

"If you're stuck on the Palmetto and feel frustrated, burn some sage!"

"Ever since I carry Horatio Cane on top of my left boob, I move around Miami in total peace and comfort."

Ladies, what's in your bag?

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Thursday, November 01, 2007

Sexcrunch: Raging Men, Horny Ladies and Condom Bragging

All the news that's fit for bed, served between the sheets. Don't ever say you aren't getting any!

Pants Below The Ass Not Just For Street Anymore!
Kids, pants below the ass is ok on Miami's stylish beaches, but not in school. Photo by yours truly.

Boy, we could sure use some more creative "emasculating gestures" against asshole drivers in Miami. People of my city, start wiggling your pinkies like our friends down under! Some wanker in Australia flew into road rage after a woman showed him the little finger. Insecure about size much? Read the full story at

Here's another curious report from down under, courtesy of the 2007 Durex Sexual Wellbeing Survey: "In almost every country, men have had more partners than women - the only exception is New Zealand where the women's average of 20 lovers is three more than the men's."

I don't know what's up with those Kiwi ladies, but I do know this: in a world full of lousy drivers, we might as well be getting some mileage in the bedroom!

There's nothing that says "I'm a loose tramp" more than carrying around a transparent bag lined with condoms! But heck, at least I'm a smart, health-conscious slut who doesn't want to catch anything nasty from my lover and get preggers. Personally, I'd rather carry all things that go near my genitals (ie, tampons, condoms, vibrators, etc;) in a private, enclosed clutch, but any product that gets people talking about safe sex is a good thing.

The condoms are sealed-in and available for emergency use only, which ladies, as we well know, is much better than Plan B.


The indefatigable Hugh Macleod does it again! Lord knows what he had in mind when he drew this last week. Could it have been inspired by Apple's release of Leopard, the latest pussy on the block? Of course, this cartoon can be interpreted in other ways. After all, the world's oldest profession has been using pussy 1.0 since the beginning of time, no upgrade required.

On a side note, I can't wait until Apple gets to Liger.

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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Famous Miami Bloggers

Famous Miami Bloggers
Is there a blog in there?

Last month, five of us cool cats (yes, I said it) got together at Morada Bay in Islamorada for the first ever South Florida tweetup, a gathering of folks who are on Twitter, including Devbear, Douge, Fanless and Dearyvette. We're hoping to do more planned and/or spontaneous get-togethers, so stay tuned. We had a grand old time and I hope you can join us in the future.

I was just thinking about this the other day -- 99% of my LOCAL real world friends are people I met online. It's simply amazing, perhaps stating the obvious for some of you, but it's not something I take for granted. Since I started blogging two years ago (October 10th was this blog's birthday), I have met many wonderful people who have given a damn about me in real life and I've had the honor to give a damn about them.

I'm not talking about "friends" in a Robert Scoble facebook 5,000 "contacts" sort of way -- which is totally cool and serves its purpose, that's all fine and well -- but people who make a real difference in my life, which is a blessing, because I've been a reclusive writer for the last two years and all of my "old school" friends have left Miami. (Why have my friends left Miami? That's another matter to discuss entirely.)

In my favorite movie, Casablanca, Rick may have told Ilsa "it doesn't take much to see that the problems of three little people don't amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world," but imagine how that screenplay would've been written today? Yes, the problems of three little people still don't amount to a hill of beans, but the difference is that with technology, three little people can move mountains.

Results in meatspace is the true power of social media and it's something I definitely don't take for granted. Old friends are still very much so in my life and new friends have taken root in this topsy-turvy world.

Quite recently, my brother announced to the family that he and his wife are moving to Hawaii. This upset my father because the traditional Cuban family physical center was already detached enough with my brother's setting up life in Los Angeles. I can understand why my parents would feel bereft, "losing" a son to the city of angels, since they had to give up everything they ever knew to exile from that little island off the Caribbean Sea. You see, there hasn't really been any grounding in my family; we always came from somewhere else and have been rather nomadic for several generations.

But on the other hand, I'm very lucky to live in a generation that knows no boundaries. What does it mean to not have a proper home? What do we really "own" anyway? I'll tell ya, the beating heart is the best mortgage you'll ever invest in. Besides, there is no such thing as distance anymore and there are certainly no more excuses.

Imagine just for a moment what it would've been like to live without cheap long distance, email, instant messaging and of course, twitter. Yes, it used to be called book learning, but not many people, let alone women, had access to education.

The distance between two hearts is a fiction we create within ourselves, which is why I've always assumed the internet was modeled after God (my sense of God, admittedly) and compassion. "Connect, always connect" is my favorite quote (E.M. Forster) and applies in mysterious ways. Broadband is a blood vessel, a life line, an umbilical chord. The heart beats, the body moves and spirit is called to action.

Don't twitter? Here is a primer I wrote for Simplr. My friend Stephanie is using twitter to chart her weight loss journey. If you like, you can follow me here (Manola is a separate but inactive account).

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Saturday, October 20, 2007

Sexcrunch: Cash Cows, Wealthy Lechers and Hot Geezers

All the news that's fit for bed, served between the sheets. Don't ever say you aren't getting any!

sex on the beach pussy thong Get a room! This classic sex on the beach moment brought to you courtesy of Key Largo Diver, one of my favorite local photographers. Yes, the girl is pulling a Britney, but that wayward thong is too low even for Manola's taste. Click here to see the nsfw full monty.

Speaking of exposing your pussy to the world, Scientific American reports on a study conducted by some dudes who proved that strippers make more bucks when they're ovulating. Yeah, seriously. Pole dancers on the pill served as a control group and went home with nothing extra to report to the IRS. The results of this experiment suggest that human estrus still lurks beneath our civilized codes of social conduct, as opposed to baboons, who don't think twice about displaying their engorged rumps to potential mates.

What genius! I'm tellin' ya, who would've thought that showing your pussy to a bunch of horny guys when you're most likely to make a baby results in such financial generosity? I love science.

Speaking of guys who pay for pussy, Isaiah Thompson at New Times Miami reports on the South Florida sugar daddy scene. There's a local company that makes it easy for fellas with disposable moolah to support their darlings -- or, if you choose to look at it another way -- the company offers an online job board for sugar babies. The definition of "sex worker" is quite loose and certainly, the economy of cash and sexual currency has always been grayer than Oscar Wilde's imagination. Me? I'll stick to dinner and a movie, thank you. That'll be all.

Jill Bauer at The Miami Herald writes a fascinating article that introduces Judie Manulkin, a local septuagenarian sexologist. Bauer also focuses on the trials and tribulations of sex life over fifty -- an age that's not looking so old to me right now, egads! Surely, viagra has made many older peckers quite chipper, but there's more to it than erections. I remember when my sister was actively dating in the 50 + scene. Same drama you hear spring chickens yap about, just chased with a shot Geritol. (Cache this article quickly before the paper throws it into archive oblivion!)

Is it a penis or an easter egg? Gizmodo questions Motorola. Hmm, maybe I should trade in my old Nokia!

It's easy to be dirty-minded when you see this cartoonist in action!

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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Eau de Scrotum

I'm sorry, I'm sort of a matter of fact person, and whenever you do an ad campaign with a perfume bottle on top of a skeletal model's vagina, I'm going to think wow, you want guys to start acting like horny dogs who sniff out hoochie!

Real classy, huh?

Ya know, I'm just kind of literal that way. But what if we turned the tables around? What if Tom Ford had to design a perfume campaign for women? Would gladiator-supersize-OMG peni be served so candidly and with such fervor? Hmm ... the cautious, compassionate critic in me says "I don't think so."

Here's the bottom line, folks. Pussy sells, dick does not.

And I would love to see scrotum served so cold, like a tuna platter, know what I mean?

And by the way, if I did have a for real boyfriend, I would NEVER buy him this cologne, unless of course, he had to figure out how to find it ... :-)

Please, please, please ... contemplate this the next time you give a guy a blow job, alright?

What more is there to say?

Do you or don't you want to your cologne to smell like hoochie? Sexual smells are wonderful, but not like this ...

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Gringo Woo Your Spanish Fly

This tender chonga video is dedicated to my fellow writer pal, Matt Meltzer, formerly aka White Dade. Come to think of it, perhaps many transplanted Miamians may also enjoy this song ...

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Tuesday, October 09, 2007

A Death Prayer and Some Laughs

maria drawing heart flatline

Well, before you start thinking the author of this blog has major mood swings ... something funny happens to you after you've flatlined. It's hard to explain, but boy does this change you forever. I was talking to an old grad school buddy about this and ya know, it seems like all in a day's work, but not really. It's possible to be all bumpity-bump and yet perfectly content ... the heart is a VERY fickle organ, but you still look at that electronic monitor like it defines you somehow. And well, that thing called death, it's like I walk hand-in-hand with her every day, eating a snow-cone or having a grand old time, all good stuff.

In any case, I was inspired by my friend over at Gaping Void for some profound thoughts on a death prayer, but even perhaps more so on just the thought of what if? based on my own lived experience. Well, more cartoons and inanity tomorrow, for certain ... no one ever said the laughs came easily. But they do come, don't they?

PS ... if it helps you to know, as I thought I was at death's door, I was cracking jokes with the cute ER staff in green scrubs, would you expect any less? Soon I will tell you about the hilarious experience at the hospital, no less than 4 EMTs as my witness!

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Friday, October 05, 2007

South Beach On $5,000 A Day

"It's dick. You GOTTA have dick."

"What's the point of living if you can't be a stupid, fucking lush?"

"This little restaurant/bar/mafia den is in the middle of this Jewish hassid neighborhood, so you never know if you're talking to the rabbi or the drug dealer. Talk about spiritual food."

"I feel like Tony Montana is going to walk into the room with a machine gun."

Rachael Ray vampired Manola's body, zOMG! But ever wonder how to do South Beach on a budget? Well, wonder no more ... my client has all the answers. Wanna schmooze your way into a nightclub? And afterwords, how 'bout some cheap, good eats?

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Thursday, October 04, 2007

Modern Love: An Indecent Proposal

Cartoon drawn up quickly over the phone while talking to a friend. We take social media VERY seriously!

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Sexcrunch: Penile Art, Neoclitori and Repentant Pornographers

All the news that's fit for bed, served between the sheets. Don't ever say you aren't getting any!

Just your average tax collector on South Beach. Does this phenomenon have a neoclitoris?

As a rogue cartoonist, I do appreciate innovative approaches to art. But this one I could've never imagined!

Learn more about Pricasso here.

Proof once more that sex and gender are not bedfellows: some people buy pussy, but not for porn. Reuters Health reports that "most people who undergo male-to-female sex change surgery are satisfied with the results." In the process of transexual metamorphosis, feminizing genitoplasty often involves the recreation of a neoclitoris. I really like this word: neoclitoris. It's refreshing. Not just any old clitoris, but a neoclitoris ... ah! Neoclitoris ... strong enough for a man, but made for a woman.

Speaking of dudes who are pussies, Joe Francis is behind bars but wants you to know he's a really nice guy -- the kind you can take home to mother. The Girls Gone Wild creator has launched a website complete with baby pictures in the hope you'd want to pinch his cheeks, even if the long arm of the law wants to slap his ass hard. You be the judge: go meet Joe Francis.

"All you need to know about lightning and the mysterious male organ" over at the inimitable Steve Klotz.

Babygirl gives men nine simple tips on how to impress women. My favorite? "Be funny without making burp and fart jokes."

Ariel at Shake Well Before Use critiques a stupid-ass gender-bending experiment at GM. "We dressed him in a garbage bag to simulate a tight skirt. . . ." Because you know, a garbage bag is just like a tight skirt!

Thomas Laquer, whose book Making SEX I'm currently re-reading, wrote an article about the history of the whip for Slate's sex issue. Read more at The Long and Curious History of Arousal.

Photo by the fabulous Miami Fever.

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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Steelclit: Conversation With Bill Gates

Unscripted and improvised.

Bill Gates calls Dr. Annie Steelclit for some much needed advice about sex, but gets a great investment tip instead.

"Women don't care about money, Bill. It's all about the hair."

"The woman who writes this blog is a cheap ho. You can buy her for five million and turn Sex and the Beach into a Jenna Jameson empire."

"It's kinda like vodka, but family-sized vodka."

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Sexcrunch: Good Positions, Bad Boys

All the news that's fit for bed, served between the sheets. Don't ever say you aren't getting any!

too much computer, not enough sex

Techmeme notes a recent study by advertising agency JWT that examines just how antsy Americans feel when separated from their cellphones and computers. As a matter of fact, some of them would rather finger a keyboard instead of their partners. America, listen up: if you're more interested in Twittering than achieving deep emotional intimacy, then at least get off your fat ass and go fuck somebody! (Consensually, of course.) Haven't you ever heard the phrase: use it or lose it? Otherwise, guys, your penis is going to shrink to the size of a raisin and ladies, your vagina will shut down faster than a bilge pump on a sinking boat. [Gaping Void on Twitter]

sexual positionsIs it any wonder then that a computer application can help us sexually impaired, tech-addicted Americans find bump and grind bliss? After all, it's hard enough to find sexual compatibility -- even on a deserted island without cellphones, computers and (gasp!) wifi. But what if that "island" is a lonely bed in Manhattan? Ah. Imagine that your text-messaging fanatic of a lover barges into the bedroom, looking like he could bounce a quarter off his penis, but you, you're so premenstrual, you just want to lie under him like a bloated whale before raiding the fridge for chocolate. Well, let iVillage's Perfect Position Selector tell you what position to assume. No one has time to read the Kama Sutra nowadays -- it's longer than 140 characters! Note to iVillage: how about a masturbation guide for us single gals? [Truemors]

In local news, it's hard to tell who deserves the Darwin award in the following scenario: is it the nightlife entrepreneur pimp who throws a look-but-don't-touch party for drunk, horny dudes? Or the bimbo who uses xanax as a booze-modifying drug? There's nothing funny about sexual assault aboard the Ultimate Party Cruise. Hey, big spender, no means NO, even if she's three sheets to the wind. Read Ashley Harrell's article Wet T-Shirts, Titty Fights and Ugliness at Sea at Miami New Times.

Just when you thought it was safe for tweeners to get their social media on ... surprise! Seems like some of the perverts who got the boot from Myspace found a new home at Facebook. Yinka Adegoke at Reuters reports that New York State Attorney Andrew Cuomo's office has subpoenaed Facebook for not doing enough to keep the social networking site sicko-free.

Facebook, get your shit together. How can you complain about breastfeeding mothers when you've got convicted or potential sex offenders prowling about teeny-bopper profiles? For more on the breastfeeding scandal, start with Tere.

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Friday, September 21, 2007

A Drop of Water in the Ocean

drawing by Maria Lemus Why would you want baubles and beads, when the most precious jewel beats inside of you?

Today I have the honor, pleasure and pride of announcing that I will blogging on a professional basis with Stephanie Quilao, publisher of four fabulous blogs: Back In Skinny Jeans, Simplr, Tinseltini and Noshtopia.

The first blog focuses on health, wellness, diet and body image, among other women-friendly topics. Simplr is just as its namesake implies – simplifying technology. Tinseltini celebrates famous folk over 35. And finally, Noshtopia gives a much-needed good name to healthy snacking. I’ll let Stephanie tell you more, in her own words.

Stephanie is a beautiful, courageous woman whom I deeply admire. Our business relationship stems from a friendship forged online and phone (she lives in San Francisco) and is a living testament to the good that can come when the positive energy of like-minded people is harnessed on electronic media.

My career background couldn’t be any more different than Stephanie’s. She worked with some industry cowboys in the tech world of Silicon Valley, whereas I didn’t even know the world “blog” two years ago. In spite of this, both she and I have followed our hearts, come to a place where our creativity can flourish and shaped a new reality for ourselves by aligning our intentions with our careers.

At some point during my yoga teacher training, my teacher Gaia took us students to the beach. She told us that yoga was you – a drop of water in that great ocean, empowered and humbled all at once, connected with God (whatever ‘god’ means to you), but above all, not a solitary drop, just a drop in the vastness, abundance of life.

The internet is an ocean of sorts; it gives us the perfect marriage of what the Hindu sages have known for thousands of years. Shiva is the driving force and Kali the vessel for manifestation; they are inseparable, creation and creative all in one, masculine and feminine, all united in the passionate exchange of energy that gives life meaning.

Whenever we follow our dreams, we harness the power of Shiva and Kali in all of us.

And so it’s with great humility, gratitude and love that I embark on that ocean … one drop, one word, one connection at a time.

Join me today then at Stephanie's online digs: can we eat without the skinny smugness?

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Thursday, September 13, 2007

How 'Bout Dem Apples?

This cartoon is dedicated to Fanless, the b00bz crusader par excellence!

So like the other day, my hard-ass friends were giving me shit because I didn't know about Guy Kawasaki. Hello? Unless you're Buddha, Jesus, Ghandi, Mother Teresa, Angelina Jolie or my parents, please have your receptionist call mine and maybe we can do lunch.

Listen to Manola's unexpected Southern Baptist evangelist cousin chime in for a religous rant with a totally fake accent! This ignorant, back-assward blogger confesses she doesn't give a shit about blogosphere celebrity. Don't get her wrong ... it's not about the bloggers, it's about the hype!

We apologize in advance for the crappy quality of the audio. We also apologize for the customary irreverence and disrespect. The truth is, we do appreciate the hard work, talent and worldly influence of so many folk who have forged ahead in our era of electronic communication ... but seriously, shall we grieve if we not know wherefore Guy Kawasaki?

Kawasaki let the good times roll ...

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Friday, September 07, 2007

Silicon Chips vs. Silicon Tits

Inspired by a true story of sexual harassment way yonder in California but also my current musings on the web 2.0 phenomenon, which are both favorable and unfavorable. Most people barely have the emotional skill sets to have real relationships in meatspace; life online only complicates matters. It's a catch-22: the internet brings people together, but also has the potential to kill intimacy.

I still feel it's a tool, a means to an end, as easily manipulated by the end user as a good white lie and a poker face in conversation. Intuition is difficult to muster without flesh and bone and a voice to gauge. I do spend much time online because of my writing and art, but I also set boundaries in order to harvest what's best for me from that enormous net I've thrown into the sea.

This phenomenon is particularly interesting for my generation because I didn't grow up on web 2.0, but I'm still young enough to be growing up on whatever new webs we are currently weaving (3.0? 4.0? 5.0? I contend this scale would be best utilized for rating orgasms!)

I used to write my high school term papers on a typewriter. (Boy, do I miss the clankity-clank of the keys and ca-ching of the carriage return!) In those days, we lacked a second, ethereal world tied by cables and electrical impulses that creates a simulacrum of ourselves.

Still, most of my dear friends today are people I've met thanks to this blog. But that's just it: we met there and moved on. We no longer live online; the internet is simply our carrier pigeon which, thankfully, helps us share so much of ourselves as an extension -- not a substitute -- of ourselves.

Like I said, catch-22.

Call me old school. Last week at The Abbey, I felt a sudden urge to write and draw. I asked the bartender for paper. He handed me a small notepad and I shook my head: "Oh, no. I'm going to need A LOT." He understood. After looking under a stack of old newspapers, he placed a glorious yellow legal pad before me, which I wrote in feverishly for six full pages. Once satisfied, I thought the words were going to spill out onto the bar, overflowing like the foamy head on my Duvel.

This inspiration would've never occurred on a laptop. Nothing can replace the raw sensuality of writing or drawing with ink on paper.

And most importantly, nothing can replace true human interaction.

Bah. Enough seriousness. Stay tuned for the South Beach version of this cartoon, coming soon to a sexy blog near you!

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Monday, September 03, 2007


If you find the letters a wee bit small to read, do please click on this delightful image for a Ron Jeremy size close-up.
Oh my! I am SO going to hell for this one. YEAH! I got some of my mojo back ...

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Friday, August 31, 2007

The Dissolusionment of Love

Is it love that I'm feeling? Or incontinence? Every woman ought to know the difference!

Yes, that's a new word I coined: dissoluble + disillusioned = dissolusionment. I think I can retire now, thank you. What woman shall cast the first tampon? What woman cannot relate to this? Drawn at The Abbey, Miami Beach.

Disclaimer: this cartoon in no way whatsoever pays homage to Hugh Macleod. I've been drawing for donkey's ages, long before I met this man. I can't help it if he likes to draw on business cards and Lord knows I can't control myself if a legal pad, tablecloth, firm ass or other surface amenable to my scrawls just happens to leap at me when I have a pen in my hand.

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Flat Manola

Self-portrait inspired by geek blogger dinner featuring Hugh Macleod et. al. at a pizza joint in Miami. Just in case you were wondering if my compulsion to draw was spurious, here is an actual specimen that has been crinkled up in my purse for nearly four weeks. I'm not guaranteeing that this will be the last cartoon I'll ever draw on a greasy paper tablecloth.

Hell, I'll draw on the truffle-oil stained embroidered napkin handed to me by the sommelier, thank you.

I'll even draw on your ass if it's firm enough!

I've always labeled myself as an artisan of words AND images. It's a strange feeling to want to capture the moment both verbally and visually. I suppose the art of cartooning satisfies, but it relies heavily on le mot juste and the punctum. Brevity is key. A light bulb lit. A flash of something -- then all is gone.

OK, screw the big fucking words. It either works or it doesn't. And when you can laugh at yourself, you know it does.

Manola was born from a time in my life that wasn't particularly pretty or funny. Actually, it was depressing, inconsolable and ugly. All those laughs we've shared? They sometimes came to me because there was nowhere else to turn.

And so it is. A blessing, blessedly in disguise. Being funny isn't easy, but never laughing is so much harder.

Two years ago, I hadn't even hit rock bottom yet. Yet Manola knocked hard against the eggshell and I nurtured her fledgling existence. The support was mutual; she also nurtured me. Sometimes I don't know if I would've survived without Manola's obnoxious sense of humor. In some ways, the character I created saved me.

I've carried this woman with me for nearly two years (come October). It's just dawning upon me, the weight and responsibility of keeping Manola alive.

And you know what? It aint so bad, my friends. I'll be celebrating my fortieth birthday in November. I've never looked forward to a milestone in my life such as this -- proud, happy, hopefully healthier and above all, truly funny because it's coming from a place where both Manola and I can thrive.

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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Apple's New Heartpod

Oh my! I haven't written about sex in so long, I forgot where to put my pasties!

Check out my new groovy holter monitor! How cool would it be to have an iPhone, iPod and holter monitor all in one? Steve Jobs needs to call me!

Seriously, got fitted today for a second round of monitoring since I first returned home from the hospital due to a recurrence of palpitations and some rapid heart rate. But nothing nearly as serious as my experience in July. Just checking the ticker, that's all.

Thanks to all of you for your emails and comments. I'm still gathering energy for a future full of bawdiness with Manola, Dr. Annie Steelclit and maybe even videocasts with Professor Manola Finlandia! In the meantime, expect a few cartoons. I'm in a drawing mood lately.

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Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Just Passing By

Marían was an old friend of mine who dropped out of my life for no reason. I say no reason, but of course there's always a reason why we cross each other's paths, fall in and fall out or stay put.

We are all teachers and students of the one constant that needs reminding: compassion.

Marían and I had traveled together to Spain twice and our families were close; she had asked me to be a bridesmaid at her wedding; she had a key to my apartment in Miami; she was the kind of friend who'd show up with a cold bottle of Chardonnay if she'd had a fight with her man; my door was always open, my heart available to console.

On this day, we wandered the forest near Miraflores de la Sierra, an area north of Madrid where she had spent many blissful summer childhood days. We had just eaten a wholesome, filling lunch at an inn where she had shared the same plate of beans, the same asparagus and the same cool wine with her mother. It’s as if a still life had remained fresh, without getting stale or dusty, the memories of a meal rising once again from the garlicky broth and fragrant vegetables.

After lunch, we walked. She told me the story of her mother's passing and how the rustling sounds reminded her of peaceful, childhood strolls. She had held her mother’s hand. They had picked berries.

The mountain air was gentle, touching the leaves of trees much in the same way one would touch and lullaby a baby -- at least this is how I felt about the mountain air, so unused to as I am to such precious ether, living here in Florida.

Although I had never met my friend’s mother, I knew she was there, walking quietly in the forest.

Then, slowly, out of the thicket, this horse approached us gently. The beast was quite docile and lovely, indulging our hands in a few caresses of its juvenile mane.

Marián laughed, predicting what I’d say, knowing so well my twisted sense of humor: "If only men were so tame."

I ask myself today, if only friends were so faithful. I'll admit it's often harder to forgive the passing of friends who haven't yet physically died, than it is to let go of the folly of men.

Do I love my friend any less? Of course not. I hope she is well, enjoying the peace and happiness she felt here, wherever she may be.

Photo by yours truly. See more of Spain at Flickr. Read more Spain travel stories at Meridian.

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Clipped Wings

But mommy, if you're wings aren't clipped, then why can't you fly?

If you can't have Manola, would you enjoy a little Maria? Here goes: I am writing and drawing again but in a totally different vein, no pun intended. Let the words fall where they may. I'm not going to start a new blog just because my style, tone and content aren't always Manola. Honestly, does it really matter? Please indulge the growing pains. And above all, thank you for your faith and love. Drawing by yours truly. See more on Flickr.


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Greetings from Mayami Beesh

Drink to me only with thine eyes. Life is good when nothing is taken for granted.

Hello everyone! Thank you for your kind inquiries with regards to the state of my health. Although Maria is still on hiatus from Sex and the Beach, correspondent Manola Finlandia has volunteered to report.

Maria is working on her tang and spending time with frengs ...

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Saturday, July 14, 2007

An Affair of the Heart

Love is the greatest gift of all: the binding of love, the fire of love, the freedom of love.

Last Saturday, Maria (that's me, the creator of Manola Blablablanik and author of Sex and the Beach), was hospitalized for acute atrial fibrillation. My heart started going beserk early in the morning, beating irregularly and shooting upwards of 250. (Normal resting heart rate for a woman my age is 70 beats per minute.) My blood pressure also skyrocketed to 150 over 90 (the ideal is 120 over 80).

I'm not going to bore you with the details of my stay at South Miami Hospital, but I will tell you this: I'm finally out of the cardiac ward and my heart received a clean bill of health.

Unfortunately, the good news doesn't rule out atrial fibrillation. According to my doctor, a relatively healthy young heart can still suffer; in fact, I may have had this most of my adult life, the condition masked as anxiety. Since I left the hospital, I've had one episode, far less intense and very short-lived, to be sure, which I've managed to control by yogic breathing. Of concern here is that prolonged acute episodes could lead to stroke; as well, my father has chronic arrhythmia.

In the days to come, I'll be wearing a Holter monitor to test my heart rate under different conditions of rest, stress, exercise and so on. I'm working with physicians, taking medications and most importantly just taking things easy.

"All changed, changed utterly" -- Yeats

Inside the ambulance, a caring and compassionate team of four paramedics tried to slow my heart rate down the only way they could, by injecting adenosine into a blood vessel that goes directly to the heart, via the shoulder. Adenosine stops the heart momentarily in order to convert its haywire circuit back to normal. I was told not to be afraid, that the sinking feeling would only last a couple of seconds. Indeed, the effect was brief, but to be conscious while my racing heart came to a crashing halt marked a turning point in my life.

Not only did I experience the effects of adenosine once, but twice, because my heart failed to convert. The second try felt even more intense than the first, like a crushing blow. All I could think was: "This is what death must feel like."

Angel of death: stay away. I am now more alive than I have ever been. I am more certain now of what I've always known, that I was put on this earth to love and to write. I am here to follow my heart. This is all I need to know to live.

Could this be my heart's way of telling me to listen, to recognize what is within me?

A long-time friend of mine who knows me very well is a paramedic and nurse in Collier County who has administered adenosine Lord knows how many times. When I told her my ultrasound result was normal, she responded: "Maria, your heart isn't normal, it's fucking amazing." Inspiring words! I also want my life to be fucking amazing. I want my love to be fucking amazing. Why the fuck not?

Really, life is too short. And that moment when your heart stops, that's way too long.

What about Manola?

As far as Manola is concerned, don't worry, she'll be back. As a matter of fact, she was born out of despair, during a very difficult time of my life when I hadn't yet even hit rock bottom. Yes, the wacky character you've all come to know and love was my black sun -- a shining light in the darkness. I have no doubt that she will be even more resilient than she has ever been, even funnier and more irreverent, but this time, with a little more of Maria.

I'm also going to be launching a new site in the weeks to come called Miami Good Vibes; it's a project I've had in mind for months. This site will focus on good people doing good things in our community, with information on philanthropic organizations and volunteer opportunities. I'll also highlight artists who are inspired by our culture and environment. Stay tuned.

In the meantime, I'm enjoying the blessing of devoted family and friends who bring love into my life, as well as the opportunity to not write, which is incredibly challenging for a writer to do. Well, I'm actually writing as little as possible, save for assignments at Miami Beach 411. I've been a wordsmith in some creative published or professional working capacity for over twenty years and it's time to step away from the thing I love in order to let my heart rest. Ironic, isn't it?

I'm creating as much space in my life as possible to live; to have a life away from the internet; to breathe free, to love and eventually, to write again.

I've had so much fun cracking myself up with Manola, as well as the honor of giving a few folks some laughs; if you're one of those folks, I hope you will indulge us a little leave of absence.

And fellow bloggers, I hope you'll understand why I haven't stopped by for a visit lately, but please do carry on with your wonderful work -- I want to read you again when the time is right for me to return.