The Town Tattler

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November 16, 2005

Lost In Translation or Just Lost?

To the average eye, one may assume the picture above to show an ordinary man taking a leisurely afternoon walk along Roadburn Avenue.

But to Beatrice Franklin of Circus Corner Road in Upper Springstown, a closer look proves the man to actually be her gardener, Emilio Ortiz, taking a self-appointed "break" from the job while [he assumes] Franklin has gone off on her afternoon errands.

After months of what Franklin refers to as a weekly "mediocre" upkeep of the front and back yard of her two-story Tudor-style home (where she lives with husband Merlin and their four cats, Hanky Panky, Herbert, Mona Lisa, and Barbara Jane), Bernice decided, upon an unenthused reaction after phoning the police, that she would take the matters into her own hands.

Just one day was all it took, as she left the house with a camera in tow, and sped off in her car, but only to park in a friend's driveway down the block. As Franklin had suspected, it was mere moments after she'd "left" that she spotted Ortiz hop in his pick-up truck, drive into town, and park in front of Avenue Cleaners on Roadburn Avenue.

"He's on my watch," complains Franklin, "and after two hours of work, he feels it necessary to get up and go before I can catch him? Despicable! Is this what they teach in Mexico?"

After reporting the incident to Ortiz's employer, Kingsmen Landscaping supervisor Keleil Banks asserted that Ortiz was "taking his lunch break," an act Banks refers to as "completely legal." Furthermore, he questioned Franklin's judgment by defending his employee's right to leave the property at his own discretion.

"The dude's just hungry," states Banks. "Ain't no crime," he added.

Franklin's reaction? "If he wants lunch, I'll get my brother, Harry, to give him a nice, big knuckle sandwich! Let him see how it tastes! With mustard, even, with mustard!"

Two weeks after Franklin filed the complaint against Kingsmen Landscaping, she was entered into the St. James Center for Assisted Living under agreement by her husband, Merlin.

The suit has since been dropped, as has Barbara Jane.


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