The strange, sad, and true story of Andy Kehoe.
Andy Kehoe was the son of a sea merchant that was killed by pirates when he was just three years old. His father barely had time to throw his son overboard before the cargo ship that usually carried pickles and kittens to Spain, carried the burning corpses of his father and all his closest friends to the bottom of the ocean.
Young Andy endured three days in the ocean before washing ashore on the Galapagos Islands. There he was raised by iguanas and learned much about the world. Like how to lie in the sun to raise his body temperature and how to swim underwater for 15 minutes to get to the yummy green algae on the bottom of the sea bed. Andy even swam like an iguana… head forward, arms at the side, and legs hanging still. How he did this without a tail is still a mystery.
One day, Andy found a gloriously warm spot and lay out comfortably on his belly under the sun. To Andy’s surprise, this spot ending up being on a cruise ship and his naked, sleeping body on the main deck caused an almost violent stir of shrieking women, crying children and the anger of men not so secure with their own sexuality. Cruise security quickly came to carry the upsetting, naked boy below to the ship’s holding cell. Andy knew he had been swimming in the cold ocean all day and his body temperature was not quite high enough to fight back… so he allowed himself to be quietly carried away without the usual frenzied struggle.
Here, he was stuck in a cell with a shirtless, red-faced man that got drunk and slapped a woman in the pool. As a strong male iguana would, Andy battled this man for alpha male status and dominance of his territory by hissing, flashing his green-stained teeth and slapping the man wildly with his arms and legs. Andy was soon shackled and hidden away from other people. Slowly, he began to learn some English. The first words he learned were, “Shut the fuck up you fucking freak!” and “You better back the fuck up!” That meant he should stop his high-pitched shrieking and stop running madly at the door when people showed up at it. The crew soon tired of Andy and secretly dumped his body overboard in the night off the coast of California.
Over the years, Andy experienced a lot in America and endured many, many beatings. Eventually, Andy Kehoe somehow found himself in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania making art for a living and the days of lying in the sun amongst his iguana friends are a faint and fading memory thanks to many years of forced therapy and brain trauma.