Lipstick Judy turned the color of her red lipstick.  She was livid. “I am going to see the mayor about my lost sweater.”

She marched to City Hall, across the street from the downtown bus terminal.

“I want my lost sweater brought here to the Mayor’s Office.  I cannot spend hours going back and forth to Lost and Found.”

Several days later, the lost sweater was returned to Lipstick Judy who went to the Mayor’s Office to retrieve it. 

But that is not the end of the story.  When I lost my cashmere scarf, I decided to do the “Lipstick Judy trick.”  In other words, I made a request to the Mayor’s Office.  Send the lost cashmere scarf and I will pick it up at City Hall—just like Lipstick Judy did.  Voila!


The Mayor’s receptionist smiled at the woman before her. She knew Lipstick Judy because she was a visitor to the mayor’s office at least twice a week to complain about something.  Lipstick Judy’s request was granted.



Lipstick Judy — known for her smeared red lips and lipstick that reached her nose and chin– lost her sweater on the bus in Colorado Springs.  

 “Did you find my sweater?” she asked the bus driver.

“Yes,” he said.   I found it last night and put it with other lost articles of clothing in the Lost and Found Department.

“Where is that?” Lipstick Judy asked.

“Oh that’s easy, take this bus to the bus lot about fifteen minutes from here,” the bus driver said. 

“I AM NOT GOING THERE…It is an hour wait to get a bus back to here,” she screamed. .

“Ma’am, it is not my fault where the Lost Found is….Don’t scream at me.”

LIpstick Judy was livid with anger.  “I am going to see the mayor about this.”

She marched to City Hall, across the street from the downtown bus terminal.  

“I want my lost sweater brought here to the Mayor’s office.  I cannot spend hours going back and forth to Lost and Found.” Several days passed.  Lipstick Judy got a phone call from the Mayor’s receptionist and told her that her sweater was waiting for her at City Hall. 

But that is not the end of the story.

Several months later, I lost my cashmere scarf on the bus in Colorado Springs.  Like Lipstick Judy, I did not want to spend hours on public buses away from the downtown bus terminal.  I walked to the Mayor’s office and asked the receptionist at the desk about sending my cashmere scarf from the Lost and Found to the Mayor’s Office.

“If Lipstick Judy can do this, so can I,” I said.

My cashmere scarf appeared at the Mayor’s Office several days later.





In 2001, I lived at the Greenhouse Condominiums in Alexandria Virginia.  So did Tom DeLay.  In fact, he was my next door neighbor.

I did not know that he was the House Majority Whip when I moved next to him.  I was living in Colorado and when I found a job in the Washington D.C. area, I searched for a place to live very hurriedly.  I found a lovely rented apartment on the ninth floor of a condominium in Alexandria Virginia.

“Do you know who lives in this building,” the taxi driver said to me.

“No, who,” I asked.

“The famous Republican named Tom DeLay,” he said.

“Oh that is so nice,” I said nonchalantly.

I told my friends about this conversation with the cab driver and my famous neighbor.

“Stay away from him…he is a bully with a nickname…THE HAMMER.”

I took their advice and kept a low profile in the building.

Several days later, I learned that Congressman Tom DeLay was in apartment 909.  I was situated in apartment 908.  Wow!

Then, each morning, I saw him when I went to the elevator.

“Good morning,” he said cheerily.

“Good morning,” I responded with a smile.

And our greetings would remain friendly each morning.

Other neighbors ignored me.  In fact, when they joined us on the elevator, all they would talk about would be their 401Ks or their leave schedule.  Of course, that is what government workers talk about….

“Good morning,” said Tom DeLay to me.

“Good morning,” I responded once again.

Why is he nicknamed THE HAMMER?  He seems very friendly….in fact, like BUTTAH…..



Seymour Krim could not find his matches.  He was a nonstop smoker and he carried his cigarettes in his vest pocket.  His cockeyed hat slooped over his nearsighted eyes.  His cigarettes were always handy.  However, he never could find his matches.  That is how we became friends.

One day at Bleecks Bar, he looked at me and asked:

“Do you have a match?”

“Seymour, you never have any matches.”

It was true. 

I gave him some matches.  The trademark said Hotel Astor on Broadway.

Then, I continued talking.

“Seymour, I can no longer call you Seymour.  To me, your are Matchless Krim.”

Matchless Krim was matchless in so many ways.  The writer Norman Mailer called him the best writer of the Beat Generation.  Matchless Krim knew Gregory Corso, Alan Ginsberg and other “Beats” of the 1950s.  You may have read his book, “Memories of a Nearsighted Canoneer.” 

When I met Seymour Krim, he was fiftyish, well-known on the literary circuit and the star of the New York Herald Tribune.  I was a graduate student at Columbia University in my early twenties.  It was 1965.  

We met at the Artists and Writers Restaurant (more familiarly known as Bleecks).  It was the bar frequented by journalists in New York City, especially when the New York Herald Tribune was “put to bed.”

One night, after the Trib was put to bed, Matchless Krim and I met at Bleecks. The theatre critic Walter Kerr had just submitted his theatre review and he headed home. 



Zisa Moglen

….to be continued


TRUMAN HARRIS: rings on his fingers


He loved to go to thrift shops and markets.  His sterling silver rings and turquoise necklace defined him.  Truman Harris loved trinkets and all kinds of jewelry.

“I bought this engraved silver band at the fair last week,” he said proudly.

I met Truman Harris on the bus in Colorado Springs.  His sense of fashion and his love of lunchtime pizza were his trademarks.   He told me that he loved to eat the gourmet pizza at Poor Richards Bookstore on Tejon Street.

“Meet me there,” he said.

In his friendly yet quiet way, he invited me to be his friend. Truman did not pretend to be anything other than gay.  He was authentic about his homosexuality and his politics.

When I became his friend, we have a standard greeting.

Truman would look at me and say:

“I  have one word for you…..SOCIALISM.”   (Truman was a socialist in a Texas sort of way).

I glared at him and responded.

“I have two words for you, Truman….STRONG MAYOR.”

It was an inside joke between us.  My politics was different from his…yet we both held similar opinions related to the transportation issues of Colorado Springs.  The bus system needed to be expanded and funded more fully. In his last years, Truman had difficulty breathing and wore a respirator.  it was difficult for him to walk to the bus stop. 

While taking the bus to Wal-Marts, Truman Harris found breathing difficult.  Nevertheless, he arrived at the Wal-Mart and shopped for the food items he needed.  Then, he fainted.  He died of congestive heart failure on that Wal-Mart trip.

I miss Truman Harris…..   

Zisa Moglen — August 30, 2014



Lipstick Judy was known as “Judy Lips” because her red lipstick was smeared all over her mouth and near her nose and chin.  She was a character. 

Lipstick Judy was known throughout Colorado Springs, especially by those who took public transportation. Because of her throaty voice and her demanding demeanor, Lipstick Judy intimidated all those who came into contact with her.

When she boarded the public bus at the Downtown Bus Terminal in Colorado Springs, other bus riders moved away from her.  She fought to locate herself on the first seat near the driver.  It was known as the seat where Judy Lips sat.  However, if you coughed or blew your nose, she would relocate to another space far away. Judy Lips was afraid of your germs!

When I first met her, I thought she was a bad imitation of Greta Garbo.  No, her accent was not Swedish.  It was a low-grade Hungarian accent.  She wore a black turban and her big sunglasses seemed like a disguise.

 “I dare you to get to know me,” she seemed to say.

Very few people wanted to become her friend.

Lipstick Judy died last year.  It is sad that she died alone.  And nobody claimed the body at the morgue.  Nobody should die alone, even Lipstick Judy.

ZIsa Moglen—August 30, 2014




EL POLLO LOCO—the headless chicken

FLABLUNGET is the headless chicken


El Pollo Loco is the Spanish term for the headless chicken.

In Fruita, Colorado, there is a celebration for the famous headless chicken who ran around the barnyard for several days…..AFTER HIS HEAD WAS CUT OFF.

In Zisa Moglen’s book THE FLABLUNGET CHRONICLES, she writes about the feeling of running around like a chicken without a head when she was a single parent.   Nevertheless, she prepared a drink called LEMONADE and with sweet iced lemon tea, she thrived. 



When life hands you sour lemons, make lemonade!…..and stop running around like EL POLLO LOCO.


BRITISH in NEW YORK, 1664 and NYC MAYOR William O’Dwyer

Mayor O’Dwyer says Good-Bye to 1664 in the New York Logo

In 1664, the British arrived in the New World and fought with the Dutch.  New Amsterdam became New York….the Dutch word for the area on the East Coast was now New York, a British word. 

An official New York logo showed the words “since 1664.”  In the 1950s Mayor William O’Dwyer deleted the date 1664 on the New York logo.   Mayor O’Dwyer reminded New Yorkers that July 4, 1776 was Independence Day.  He said he wanted the 1664 date of the once British rule of New York to be erased.