“Who knew that Nikki’s frustration while trying to empty a lip-gloss tube would lead to a revolution?
“It’s all about Economy, Ecology, and Fabulosity! Be a Conscious Glamour Girl!”
In 1982 Nikki Narvaez’s mother, Brenda, died of Leukemia. Brenda was 33. Nikki was 10. At the time of her death, Brenda worked for two brothers, Harvey and Chuck Steinberg, as a secretary of their family owned moving company, Quaker Moving and Storage. Instead of canceling the retirement savings fund Brenda had been contributing to, Harvey and Chuck maintained it for seven years until it was time for Nikki to go to college. Shortly before she was ready to make the journey across the state to attend the University of Pittsburgh, the Steinberg brothers took up a collection from their then current employees and raised $1500 additional dollars. They presented Nikki with the $1500 dollars and the $30,000 dollars from her mother’s preserved retirement fund to pay for her tuition and sent Nikki off to college where she would meet her “second” Brenda.
Twenty one years ago, I (Brenda, affectionately known as “Bre”) moved from Charlotte, North Carolina to Pittsburgh, PA to go to college. One afternoon, two weeks after my arrival, while riding the city bus (and feeling very lost and uncertain as to whether this bus would take me back to my dorm or to Alaska) I noticed a girl, whom I had met only once before, standing at the bus stop. She looked in through the bus window and must have seen my very concerned face because she tugged her boyfriend onto the bus with her and sat down next to me. I'm still not sure if she needed to get on that bus or if she was so concerned about me that she simply got on the bus with me. At any rate, she sat down next to me and said, "I'll ride with you until we get back to campus to make sure you get off at the right place". That day, my best friend, Nikki, walked into my life. Still today, she "rides" with me even though we are cities apart. Me in Atlanta and she in Pittsburgh. She is my confidant, my court jester and my angel. Some years ago she and I were on the phone while driving (which we know is bad - but what do you do when your best friend lives 800 miles away?) and she said; "I am so tired of not being able to get all of this damned lip gloss out of the tube. I have to throw it away before I ever finish it. I should invent something to get this out". I said; "You should and it's called, Nikki's Magic Wand". That day, Nikki's Magic Wand was born and we've been breathing life into it ever since.