AT LEAST SIX TIMES OUT OF TEN WHEN I'M CROSSING VENICE AT GLENDON (story) on my way to or from Culver Plaza, that nearby wonderland of food, finance, exercise and high-end bongs, I'll walk past Nilella. I'm certain that's not her name, as we've never spoken so I wouldn't know. Moreover, a cursory googling of "nilella" yields approximately 4,350 results, mostly for horses and Sri Lankan estates. Actually, she could pass for Sri Lankan. Or, I could pass for blind and daft. Nevertheless, I call her Nilella because she reminds me of our buddy Niles (story), who, to my knowledge, is no more related to Nilella than I am to Quincy Jones, but, as you'll see from the picture I've hyperlinked his name to, could pass as a distant relative, at least if you ask me. Which you didn't.

She's tall and pretty, but seems melancholy. Heavy Gothic vibe; sunglasses, dark, functional clothing and a Trenchcoat Mafia jacket that flaps behind her like a superhero's cape. But every now and then she'll do it up, as the photo above illustrates: a flowing print dress, earrings, necklace, buoyant amble. She was even swinging her keys around on her keychain when I spotted her like a gazelle in the wild, fumbled as surreptitiously as possible for my camera and feigned a sudden uncontrollable urge to take a picture of a nearby electricity pole. I half thought she might pick me up by my throat and fling me against the Habib Market wall. That's not to say she won't crush my head like a macaroon if and when she finds out I've been writing about her on the Internet, not to mention what Niles may do when he learns that I've insinuated some kind of family connection between them. Two extremely tall people after me, one of whom is a three-hundred-and-twelfth degree multiple mauve belt karate master. Not bad for twenty minutes of writing.

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