Prostrate Loyalty

My President, Right or Wrong

This 'Pipe thinks Kolo was doing more than just blowing smoke.

Riverside Blues

Got a vacant lot somewhere and a big-ass truck? Then one of the oldest homes in Fort Lauderdale is all yours. The ex-homestead, belonging to venerable blues lover Franni Howe-Southern, has a date with a bulldozer soon, unless someone claims it. Built in 1914 from Dade County pine and painted a lovely shade of turquoise, the old cottage and barn sit on 23 of a wooded acre that, until recently, had never been cleared. This verdant haven was the spot where Howe-Southern originally held her annual Frannipalooza, a neighborhood-friendly blues bash featuring hog roasts, moonshine swillin', and local musicians such as John the Cop, the Fabulous Fleetwoods, Albert Castiglia, and Joey Gilmore.

Christopher Smith

Howe-Southern sold the land and took off a couple of years back; since then, the place has stood empty, and it's looking mighty bedraggled these days.

Unlike Sailboat Bend to the north, the Riverside Park area enjoys no special protection for older properties. Since a porch and kitchen were added to Franni's place in recent years, it's ineligible for historic designation. So it's in line to be the latest home in Riverside Park to be knocked down in the name of change, even though it began life as the migrant quarters for a big pineapple plantation along the river.

"We're not going to attempt to stop progress," says Tom Andrew, vice president of the area's residents' association. "Sentimentally, you hate to see the old things go."

A local development firm called the Bentley Group recently won approval to put a nine-unit "cluster development" on the land. Pretty soon, the sound of a rip-snortin' good time in Riverside Park will be replaced by a rumble of heavy equipment.

"I went to a couple of Frannipaloozas," Andrew says, "and I don't know if we're ever going to see anything quite like that again. It was last time we're gonna get anything close to a Woodstock in the neighborhood."

Profits of the Flesh

Peter Pasch faced a rough 2004 when the 'Pipe last talked to the bulbous-eyed porn king. For two years, he and brother-in-law Jack Titolo had battled over the precious gift Pasch's dearly departed mother gave him: the ultralucrative Megasex Superstore in Fort Lauderdale and University Video in Lauderhill. There was a lot to fight over: The two smut shops pull in about $2.5 million a year, with profits of about $1.6 million.

So far, Pasch has been the loser. Titolo got greedy, Pasch claims, and instead of giving Pasch a helping hand with the business -- as Mother Pasch intended -- Titolo squeezed him out entirely. By the fall of 2002, both sought mutual restraining orders, with Titolo even accusing Pasch of shooting a bullet into his store.

But oh-five looks to be a bad year for Titolo. The IRS has just launched a tax fraud investigation and ordered him to produce every receipt, sales record, and bank statement for 2000 to 2003. Of course, Pasch had a hand in helping launch the criminal investigation: He provided the IRS with 700 pounds of boxed paperwork showing, he says, that Titolo made a damned sight more money than he was letting on. Not that Pasch is gloating.

No word from the surly Titolo.

-- As told to Edmund Newton

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