There I was on the front page of the Miami Tribune. It was a photo of me listening intently to the speaker at the immigration forum at the University of Miami. It was a side profile of me and about 5 other people. The photo looked good, but I did not want my photo in the newspaper. If someone recognized me they would know I was an illegal alien because I was attending this immigration forum.
I learned about the photo in the newspaper from from Donesha.
She had called me early in the morning 2 days after the forum.
“Did they get permission to print your photo?”
“No” I replied.
“You should sue them,” she stated. I smiled to myself. Filing a lawsuit against someone is always the first thing that comes to mind in the USA. It is the default to get a wrong right and make some money while at it. As they say in Jamaica “man haffi eat ah food”. It’s funny how immigrants who never really heard of lawsuits back home, because they were always unsuccessful, lash onto them the USA.
“You know I can’t sue anyone”, I replied.
“Oh yeah”, she realized that my “illegal” situation would make it difficult for me to win a lawsuit.
The bigger issue was the people at work. How could I face them.
I could not think of a good lie that would work.
I purchased a newspaper on the way to work.
As I entered the store to start work I was nervous. The newspaper was sold in the store.
My fears were realized as I was greeted by the cashier, Katy at the front.
“I saw you in today’s paper” she said with a big smile.
Jerome, the store manager said he saw it and smiled.
Another coworker told me “Congrats” with a big smile.
I was a bit confused. The smiles and congratulatory comments was not what I expected.
I was nervous the rest of the day as I braced myself for someone to ask about the immigration forum.
The day was slow. The trash needed to be taken out but the stock guy who was to be on site that day was out sick. Being that I was once a stock guy I had no problem taking it out.
As I walked out with the garbage bags in my hand I noticed there was a car parked near the dumpster. There was a guy looking in.
As I drew closer I realized the guy standing over the car had a camera as he was moving around trying to get good angles. He did not notice me. I kept walking toward them.
As I drew even closer I realized there was a couple in the car naked. They were having sex.
“What the heck is going on”, I thought to myself.
I was now beside the guy with the camera who was totally engrossed in the “action” and did not notice me. The couple was also “engaged” in action and did not notice me.
I cleared my throat. “What’s going on here?,” I asked. Seems no one heard me.
“What going on here”, I shouted.
The couple stopped having sex. The camera guy looked up startled but was quick with an explanation as he put down the camera. The couple started toscramble for clothing that was in the car.
“Oooh, we are filming a love scene for a movie about a love story in Miami.”
He saw the look of disbelief on my face.
“Please don’t report us” he pleaded “it’s a low budget film”
I folded my arms and remained silent as he quickly gathered some lighting stands.
“We are leaving, now” the man said as they quickly got into the car and drove off.
This was not a love story, this was a “porno” movie.
I looked up and it seems half the employees were looking out the backdoor. They must have heard the commotion. Jerome, the store manager, walked up behind me as everyone scrambled back inside.
I explained to him what I saw and what was going on. He told me to write up an incident report and give to him to submit to the head office.
As I wrote up the incident report I smiled. It seemed the incident has everyone distracted. There would be no talk about the photo in the newspaper.
It did not work. A few of the people on the next shift mentioned seeing me in the newspaper.
At the end of the day as I was walking out, the pharmacy manager complimented me for handling the situation at the dumpster and said that is probably why I was in the newspaper.
That evening Donesha called me.
“Did anyone ask you about your immigration status,” she asked.
“No, we had some drama at the store so I think that everyone was distracted, it was barely mentioned” I replied.
Then she laughed
“Why are you laughing,” I asked.
“Americans don’t read they only look at the pictures”
I smiled. She was right.