SATURDAY NIGHT WITH MY LESBIAN WIVES

Donna and Terri are married. Lesbian wives. My friends for years.  Love them both. Refer to them as my lesbian wives.

Spent last night with the ladies. Dinner at their home. Donna cooked. Her cooking spectacular! As always.

Afterwards, we walked across the street to Blue Macaw for a drink. Larry Baeder performing. Per his usual custom, he asked Terri to join him. Made her night.

The last several years have been tough on Terri. First, a heart attack. Then 2 terrible cancers from which she was lucky to survive.

Terri was going blind before the cancers. Still had many years of sight however, though diminishing. The cancer medications accelerated her blindness. She is now 80 percent blind. Can see shadows. Next year, not even shadows.

Terri’s disposition not affected. An “up” person. God love her!

It has been reported that last month was the hottest July ever. Ever being 1871 when records began being kept. Twenty nine days were 90 degrees or better.

Normally September is the worst month heat wise. Yet to come. Humidity extremely heavy in September.

I have learned how to beat the heat. Remain indoors. Generally at home. Air conditioning!

The evenings were not bad in July. For some reason, most of the evenings were comfortable. Even though temperatures were in the high 80’s.

Several days ago, I wrote concerning the California Bedsloe family. A heavy to read about and then report. A 70 year old great grandfather on the cell phone listening to his wife and  2 great grandchildren in the seconds before they died. A California fire killed the three.

This morning a video is running on the internet. Ed Bledsoe being interviewed. He repeated his 5 year old grandson James’ last words…..Grandpa, the fire is coming in the door!

It was hard reading the words last week. Far worse this morning listening to Ed Bledsoe repeat them.

The fire is named the Carr Fire. The sixth most destructive in California history. Strange how it began.

A flat tire the cause. A tire failed. The rim scrapped the asphalt. Sparks shot out. Ignited the dry brush on the side of the road.

In today’s society, common sense and good judgment are diminishing qualities.

Several times when I was young, I had a lemonade stand alone or with a friend. Five cents a cup. People were kind. Even police officers. Always sold out.

Today, another story. I have read several times the past few years about governmental authorities shutting down lemonade stands run by some young person.

The most recent occurred in Ballston Spa, N.Y. Located in Saratoga County.

Seven year old Brendan Mulvaney was operating a lemonade stand outside the entrance to the County Fair. Lemonade seventy five cents.

Four vendors inside the fair complained to the New York State Department of Health. The vendors were required to be permitted ($30) and charge $7 for the same cup of lemonade Brendan was selling for $ .75.

The State inspectors shut Brendan down because he did not have a permit.

Stupid.

I have observed this scenario many times. Even if Brendan became permitted, he would then have imposed on him the need to keep the lemonade at a certain temperature, proof of insurance, a stand constructed to legal specifications, working papers, etc.

A kid can’t win these days!

Syracuse and Utica are neighbors in upstate New York. Fifty miles separating them.

My Father took me to Syracuse football games when I was young. I went to Syracuse Law School.  Later opened an office in Syracuse. Tried many cases in Syracuse courts. Enjoyed a private box at the Carrier Dome for football and basketball. Remained active at the University.

Many have a connection to the area. Two are Tom Cruise and Dick Clark.

I discovered this morning that Tom Cruise was born in Syracuse. Lived there his first 9 years. His Syracuse life described as poor and Catholic. We were all poor and Catholic in our early days.

Dick Clark of American Bandstand Fame got his television start in Utica in the mid 1950’s. TV station WKTV. Prior to TV, he was a weather man on Danny Fusco’s WRUN morning radio show.

Dick Clark was known as Dick Clay in those days. His Dad was a disc jockey on a Utica radio station. In order to avoid confusion, Clark changed his last name. When he moved on to a Philadelphia TV station, he went back to Clark.

Sloan will be here at noon. We have a lot of work to do.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

 

TRUMP ADMINISTRATION HEARTLESS

Normally, I begin with Key West activities and matters of interest. Then move on to political observations, etc.

This morning a couple of things are sufficiently bothering me that I am opening with them. Key West matters follow.

The law is the law. Sounds absolute. It is and is not. There are exceptions to every law. I know. I practiced law for 46 years.

A present day example involves blacks killed by police officers. In most instances appears to be murder. However indictment of police officers extremely rare. There is an exception to a murder charge where the police officer is the perpetrator. If the police officer believes he is in danger of death, he can shot  and kill with no legal liability.

A national disgrace occurred yesterday morning at the Orlando Airport. Alejandra Juarez was deported to Mexico. Alejandra is 39. Illegally entered the U.S. 20 years ago. Married Temo. Temo became a naturalized citizen before his first deployment to Iraq. He deployed 3 times to Iraq as a Marine.

They have 2 daughters. Pamela 16 and Estela 9.

Alejandra has no criminal record.

She duly reported to immigration each year. Never a problem. Permitted to remain. Till now.

As part of Trump’s zero tolerance program, she was deported. Leaving behind her husband and daughters.

Immigration laws are not absolute. Not all here illegally need be deported. There are exceptions. One is “parole in place.” It is discretionary. Permits the authorities to allow an illegal to remain. It is generally applied where the person is a spouse of one who has served in the military.

Alejandra applied 4 times for the parole in place exception. Four times denied.

Alejandra’s Congressman, together with several other Congresspersons, wrote a letter to the President asking that she be allowed to remain. No response.

Temo wrote a personal letter to the Trump explaining he had fought for his country 3 times in Iraq and asking that his wife be permitted to remain. To no avail.

Temo’s job requires traveling. Sixteen year old Pamela is remaining home to live with her father. Nine year old Estela will soon be following her mother to Mexico, however. She needs a mother’s attention. With Temo’s work schedule, such is not possible.

A shame. The story sick.

The dark side of the immigration crisis.

Trump proclaimed “zero tolerance.” Means to me all illegals return to where ever they came from. Not the case in practice.

Syracuse University on July 24 analyzed deportations under the zero tolerance policy. Concern existed especially because of the number of parents and children being separated.

The government is playing games.

In April, 8,298 illegals were apprehended. Zero tolerance came into being. In May, the  number jumped to 40,338. Thirty two percent of the 40,338 were prosecuted.

Here is where the chicanery comes into play. Prosecutorial discretion applies. The government selects those to be brought before a court and deported. Parents with children were singled out for prosecution. Understand clearly, parents with children to be deported swiftly. Illegals without children generally not referred for prosecution.

My point. The government practiced a policy whereby parents with children were selected for deportation. The administration wanted to show how tough it was and children made no difference.

The Trump administration succeeded. However now selective prosecution rears its head. Similar to no records re the children’s whereabouts. What more will we learn as time goes on?

A blot on the character of the United States. Disgraceful.

Is this who we are? What we have become?

One more story involving immigration.

Two male employees at Arizona Migrant Children Centers have been charged with sexual abuse. The facilities operated by Southwest Key Programs. Southwest Key has received $995 million since 2015 in federal contracts to provide shelter services to children in federal custody.

Two separate facilities involved in the sexual abuse matters.

At one, a male employee was discovered kissing and fondling a 14 year old girl. At another, an HIV positive worker was discovered to have gropped 6 teen age boys and having performed oral sex on 2 others.

Whether Alejandra’s story, zero tolerance pin pointing parents with children, or pedophilia situations being discovered, a new swamp has been created. A more dangerous one. To be drained or permitted to go on?

Last night a change of pace for me. Decided to go down to the waterfront. Schooner Wharf and Waterfront Brewery.

Schooner Wharf always fun. Packed with tourists last night. Spoke with an English couple. Both work with Parliament. First time in Key West.

Walked over to the Waterfront Brewery for a bite to eat. Sat at the bar and watched a replay of yesterday’s PGA tournament. Tiger Woods up there. Could win. I pull for the guy. He has paid his dues for any wrongdoing. He deserves a couple more times in the limelight as a winner.

I eat at the Brewery rarely. When I do, I order fish and chips. The fish outstanding. Large, crispy, and juicy.

Donna and Terri’s tonight for dinner. Donna cooking. She called this morning to ask if I liked scallops. Of course! Whatever she is preparing will include scallops.

Bear is 8 months old. In 10 days, he is scheduled to be neutered. Disgusting!

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

WILKES-BARRE UNMENTIONABLES

Trump did another rally last night. In Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Before rigid loyal supporters.

The media last night and this morning covered his rantings. The usual. In addition to media reports, I watched his entire talk during the late night when rerun on the internet.

Three important things omitted from the media coverage. The three items stuck out like a sore thumb when I watched Trump’s delivery in its entirety. Each cause for concern.

One had to do with children. Trump has been getting heaped upon for his separation policy re immigrants and their children. Last night, I saw a first. I suspect to portray to the nation Trump’s concern for children and their support of him.

In the group sitting immediately behind Trump as he talked were kids. Many. Interspersed throughout. Obviously there. Some sitting quietly, others waving signs. The cameras zeroing in on them.

A phony demonstration. However, one which puts the fear of God in me. Trump is authoritarian. Would like to be President forever. A dictator. Recall the Hitler Youth. Hitler started the organization in 1926. It grew more rapidly beginning in the mid 1930’s. Existed till 1945.

Is this a beginning? Is this part of an overall plan to get ’em while they’re young?

Sounds crazy. However with Trump, you never know.

The second item that struck me was his reference to NATO and his belief it only exists to protect Europe. A like…..who needs it thing. The suggestion being we are going to get out of NATO, European wars not our concern.

Reminded me of America First and the tenor of some in the late 1930’s in the U.S. The desire by many to have the U.S. stay out of European alliances and wars. The further desire the U.S. should remain an isolationist nation.

My sense of Trump was that he was telling us the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans would protect us. The same crazy talk pre World War II.

The oceans are meaningless protectors today. Kim and North Korea the most recent example. Our military experts advise North Korea has or soon will have missiles with nuclear warheads that can reach the U.S.

Russian submarines carrying missiles with nuclear warheads a similar problem. China has developed the capacity to fire missiles capable of reaching U.S. shores from the new islands it has created in Asian waters.

The third item involved Trump’s threat to shutdown the government if he does not get his wall funding. The question he raised was whether to shutdown before or after the midterms.

He bragged he was not afraid of politics. He might shutdown before.

He mentioned Russ Limbaugh and Sean Hannity supporting him in this regard.

God help us!

Last night, a Blue Macaw evening for me. Diane Millikan my guest. Diane helps me occasionally with research. She is a terrific researcher.

We were joined by Donna and Terri. They brought Elle, short for Eleanor. I never met Elle before. A lovely 37 year old from Argentina. Has been in Key West 10 years. Worked several of those years at Burrito with my friend Grant. Now works at the new sandwich shop in the small shopping center at the corner of Duval and Truman.

Different strokes for different folks. Each country has its own ways. Elle had long armpit hair. Uncovered and obvious. We discussed it. Her custom. The fashion in Argentina.

A little history. On this day in 1492, Christopher Columbus departed from Palos, Spain with the Santa Maria, Pinta and Nina. Nine weeks later on October 12, he and the ships would land in the Bahamas. Columbus thought China. Though unaware and more importantly, he had discovered the New World.

A new study supportive of those who drink alcohol. In moderation, of course. The study claims people who do not drink any alcohol are more likely to develop dementia by early old age. Teetotaling not recommended for the middle aged.

Moderation. What is moderation? One and a half bottles of wine per week.

That’s all? Fortunately, I do not drink wine.

Enjoy your day!

 

CASABLANCA AND TEARS

Tears. Crying. Normal to cry. Especially women. Last night the tears flowed.

Irma caused several of us to escape. We evacuated to Birmingham, Alabama. Guests of Jean and Joe Thornton for 12 days. A wonderful experience! Jean and Joe great hosts.

We kept busy. From 5 in the afternoon to 3-4 in the morning every day. Fun time. All kinds of experiences.

One was watching Casablanca. The great love story starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. I had seen it several times before as had the others.

During the showing, I noticed the ladies knew every line. They were whispering them before even spoken on the screen. The ladies also cried. Big time!

I was surprised.

Casablanca touched their very souls. The love scenes torture for them.

Some of us evacuees enjoyed a reunion last night. At the Key West Theater. A free showing of Casablanca. Besides Louis, Jean Thornton herself, Hayward, Joanne and Ann.

I was not disappointed. The ladies cried. The tears flowed. Jean the first to break down. Their eyes red at the end of the film.

Tender ladies!

Jean and I met for dinner before the movie. The Saint. We enjoyed a great duck meal.

Following the movie, Hayward and Joanne left the group. Jean, Ann and I went over to the Chart Room. A good crowd. Happy people on vacation in Key West.

A big guy came over to say hello. He introduced himself as Pittsburgh John. Said we had met last year and I wrote a column about him. I apologized for not recalling. We sat a while and chatted.

He brought up on his cell phone the Key West Lou column from February 18, 2017 titled Pittsburgh John. He was correct. I had written about him. Still could not recall the evening, however.

No problem.

A nice guy. He visits Key West religiously three times a year. Obviously lives in Pittsburgh. A big time concrete salesman. Travels several States.

John’s claim to fame and something he is most proud of is that at 16 he was the bat boy for the visiting Pittsburgh baseball team. He met baseball luminaries like Dwight Gordon, Darryl Strawberry and Mike Schmidt.

He was also proud of his relationship with Rocco Clemente. They occasionally shot hoops on a neighborhood court together.

Chatted with two charming and vivacious women. Donna and Jane. Friends since elementary school. Vacationing together. First time in Key West.

Donna is from The Woodlands, Texas. Divorced. An office manager for an oil and gas company.

Jane from Houston. Single. Lovely. Her professional career involves supply chain work.

The ladies plan to rip up the town while they are here.

I repeatedly say the Chart Room is the cross roads of the world. I meet people from everywhere. Last night, South Africa.

Matt and Lisa. Presently located in Washington, D.C. They work together in their own business. Described to me as assisting people to communicate with each other.

I met Matt and Lisa as I was paying my bill. Tired. Spent too little time with them. Hopefully, I will run into them again before they leave.

Why was I tired? It was after 11. I am in bed by 9 most evenings.

I normally wake at 6 and begin this blog. I did not wake till 10 this morning. Reason why the blog is being published late today.

Hemingway one of the greats who spent a number of years residing in Key West. Wrote To Have And Have Not and The Snows of Kilimanjaro while living here.

Every now and then, one of his undiscovered stories pops up. One of the most recent A Room On The Garden Side. A World War II fiction piece. Described as typical Hemingway. A debate in a hotel between two men concerning “the dirty trade of war.”

The story has been authenticated as a Hemingway work.

It appears in Strand Magazine. Strand is a quarterly publication. The Hemingway piece in its Summer Edition which was published this week.

BOB tired today. If BOB is tired, I am tired. Better stated, I am tired. Therefore, BOB is tired. The next chapter in his book hopefully tomorrow.

Today, a significant one in American history. On this day in 1776, members of the Continental Congress signed the Declaration of Independence.

The Declaration had been approved in resolution form one month earlier on July 2. The written Declaration was adopted two days later on July 4. However not signed till almost a month later. Traveling times slow, not enough States yet committed.

Marijuana delegalization is ongoing. Done in various ways. An example is Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance. Vance announced yesterday a “decline to prosecute” policy.

Beginning yesterday, no charges would be filed for marijuana possession and use. Two exceptions. If an individual possesses for purpose of sale or if a possession demonstrates a threat to public safety.

Trump was in Tampa for a rally two days ago.  We have all heard his error re the need to have an ID with photo thereon in order to buy groceries. The President has obviously never been to a grocery store.

Another one has filtered through the news. Another tax break for the rich. Trump must think the people demand  such. He is blinded by his wealth and that of others.

Trump advised a new plan for the rich. One that does not require Congressional approval. He wants to change the way capital gains are handled. Such would provide an enormous tax savings to those having big stock portfolios.

Seth Meyers the late night TV comedian suggested Trump would probably be relentless in having the tax law changed. He said Trump and his people “won’t be happy till this country is just 10 trillionaires and 300 million people fighting over one Go-Gurt.”

Trump says Putin is his friend. He better watch out. A person who goes to bed with a dog that has fleas wakes up with fleas.

Putin is recognized as a killer. As most dictators/despots have been.

Alexander Rastorguev is a Russian critic of Putin. Rastorguev was in the Central Africa Republic filming a documentary exposing the activities of a company called Wagner. Wagner is a private Russian military firm. Wagner is suspected of clandestine military operations in Syria and East Ukraine based on orders from the Kremlin.

Rastorguev, his camera man, and a reporter were ambushed and killed while riding in a car by persons unknown.

Putin involved?

Diana Millikan is in town. She is researching a book I would like to write on The History of Key West Prostitution. We’ve been at it two years. Not much recorded information on whore houses, etc.

Diana and I will be at the Blue Macaw tonight.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

WHO CREATED THE FIRST KEY LIME PIE?

An important item. Especially for Key Westers. Who created the first key lime pie! Where was it originated? Is Key West really its birth place?

This morning’s Key West Citizen ran a front page article on the issue. An excellent piece.

A Stella Parks wrote a cookbook in 2017 wherein she claimed the first key lime pie was created in 1931 on Madison Avenue in New York City. Borden’s Milk Company was involved.

Key West’s David Sloan knows everything there is to know about Key Lime pies. The world authority. He says Parks is wrong. There is an ongoing feud.

Sloan claims the key lime pie was born in the late 1860’s in Key West. At Curry Mansion. The cook, Aunt Sally. Her real name Sarah Jane Lowe Curry.

Key lime pie was served in two Key West restaurants in 1926, well before the purported discovery by Borden’s in 1931. One of the restaurants was the Green Lantern Inn. Its menu featured “lime pie,” ten cents per piece.

Sloan has assembled all kinds of documentation. Parks has nothing.

I was up and working early yesterday morning. Around 5:30. By 1 in the afternoon I had completed yesterday’s blog and final preparations for last night’s podcast show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

I had the afternoon off! A quiet luncheon at Sandy’s Cafe. Cuban cheese toast with tomato and Cuban coffee. Sat a while and read the newspapers.

Then home for some book reading.Peter Schweizer’s Secret Empires. His book revealing. I am learning the Washington swamp is more corrupt than thought. Good governmental officials cashing in on their positions through their children. Not prohibited by any law. Stinks, however.

Tuesday Talk went well. Goes well every week. Love doing the show. My numbers increase weekly. Apparently many love listening to my half hour of ranting and raving.

Strange weather this morning. Actually, not strange. Has been the same every day forever. Pouring rain and thunder. The difference today was it began at 5 in the morning. Strong wind and heavy rain. Could easily hear it from my bed. Sounded like a hurricane rolling over.

Historic day today. John Kennedy a Navy lieutenant in command of PT-109 in the Pacific. It was August 1, 1943. His boat split in half by a Japanese destroyer. Two killed. eleven survived. Everyone is familiar with the story. Cliff Robertson played Kennedy in the movie PT-109.

A connection exists between the lower Keys and the Kennedy movie. It was filmed on Munson Island. Munson Island is located in the Atlantic just south of Big Pine. Today, Munson Island is the world famous resort Little Palm Island.

What Russia did re our elections in 2016 constituted a war. Not a gun one. A cyber war. Not just a little invasion. An all out attack. Leaves the legitimacy of the 2016 election in question.

We are 98 days away from the mid-term elections. Till a few days ago, Trump had done nothing to defend against another cyber attack. A few days ago, he conducted a one hour meeting with staff. It has only been recently that Trump has acknowledged Russia was the perpetrator.

We are not defensively ready for the November mid-term. Can we get ready in time? I do not know. I am not a computer guru, etc.

I fear Russia, China, Iran and North Korea are going to have a field day playing around with our mid-terms.

Realize that with a few computer keys pressed, any nation can entirely turn off our electrical grid system. No power/electricity. Planes unable to take off. Defensive systems curtailed. Etc. Everything down.

And we are not ready to defend against any such chicanery!

Our elections are not secure. At this time, there is no coordination among federal agencies as to how to deal with the problem.

Modern authoritarian figures all have attacked the media. Silence the media and no one left to point out the wrong doing of dictators. Silence not even required. Merely diminish respect for the media.

As Trump has consistently been doing since even before his election. He has chosen the path of Mussolini, Hitler, Stalin, Putin, and Kim.

Trump appeared at a rally in Tampa last night. His supporters made up the audience. Trump demeaned the press. Fake press! The audience joined him. Turned to the reporters and gave them the finger. The middle finger. The bird. While shouting, “Fuck the press!”

Anti-media hostility is growing. Violence is going to occur. Trump will smile.

Trump spoke last night of protecting our voting system. Wrong people are voting, he claims. Though there is no proof of such. He keeps peddling that the Democrats want unqualified/non-citizens to vote. An absurdity in itself.

His solution is to require each person voting to have an ID card with his/her photo on it. As Trump claimed, such an ID card is required to even buy groceries.

The man does not know that which he talks about. I would like to know the last time he was in a supermarket or grocery store purchasing groceries.

A big night tonight! A reunion of those who escaped Irma and stayed with Jean and Joe Thornton in Birmingham for 12 days. Our second reunion.

While at their home, we watched Casablanca. Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. I was shocked and surprised. The ladies knew every line of the movie. They were speaking them before the actors. And they cried! Tears throughout. I could not believe. A woman’s movie definitely.

The Tropic Cinema is showing Casablanca tonight. Free. Reservations made weeks ago. We are going as a group. Guaranteed the ladies will be whispering the lines and shedding tears.

Love it!

Enjoy your day!

 

MARRIAGE OF CHURCH AND STATE

Never made it to Dueling Bartenders last night. Felt a bit under the weather. Disappointed because I was anxious to hear Laura Richardson sing again.

Oil and water do not mix. Nor do Church and State. Never the less, the Trump administration keeps pushing government support for religion. The primary reason to suck up to its strong Evangelical base.

Attorney General Sessions made what can only be described as a scary announcement yesterday. He announced the establishment of a Religious Liberty Task Force. A separate distinct unit within the Department of Justice.

Its purpose to help fully implement the religious liberty “guidance” issued last year under Trump’s direction.

Sessions claims the freedom to practice religion is “under attack.” He added “a dangerous movement…..real…..now challenging and eroding our great tradition of religious freedom.”

Examples offered included nuns being forced to purchase contraceptives (that’s how he put it), U.S. Senators asking judicial and executive branch nominees about dogma, and the Colorado baker who refused to make a special wedding cake for a same sex couple.

Sessions said the Trump administration in “seeking actually to accommodate people of faith.” Which faith? Whose faith?

Political pundits view the move twofold. First, to protect religious zealots who attack LGBT rights. Second, to push the marriage of Church and State on the altar of Christianity.

The new unit a victory for Trump. A victory for Evangelicals. A defeat for freedom and right to choose.

The U.S. is step by  step becoming a nation where government enforcers have been put in place to enforce unAmerican actions. ICE and this new religious unit examples.

Insufficient justice re the stolen Mel Fisher gold bar. The two men who stole the gold bar valued almost at $500,000 have been brought to justice after many years. The two were sentenced yesterday in federal court. One received 63 months in jail, the other 4o.

I suggest justice insufficient in this instance because the bar no longer exists. The thieves hacked it into small pieces to sell for pennies on the dollar. Only small fragments were recovered.

Another reason is Mel Fisher’s insurance recovery. Around $100,000. The insurance company only paid melt value as opposed to market value.

It has been raining! Big time! Major showers! Every day!

Going to rain again today and this evening. Re the daily shower, the weatherman says, “Get used to it.” As to this evening’s shower, there is “always tomorrow.”

Suicides have always been a problem in Monroe County. The Keys a part thereof.

Suicides in the Keys have averaged 21 per year the past 5 years. By July of this year, 20. Indicating suicides in the Keys are on track to double this year.

The reason is attributed to Irma and the pains and problems she left behind. Sad. We have not yet as a society learned how to adequately prepare for natural disasters. Not meant as a blame. Merely a statement of fact.

Where is Bum Farto? Where is Jimmy Hoffa? Birds of a feather in that they disappeared and have not been seen since. Their disappearances in the same year, 1975. Only 5 weeks apart. Hoffa on July 31, Farto on September 9.

Have they both been sitting on an idyllic Mediterranean beach since 1975, or are both part of foundations for major highways?

I was skipping around the internet yesterday looking for some interesting bit of information to share with you. Came up with Queer Politics being taught at the University of Massachusetts. An actual course. Taught one semester a year.

Described as Queer Political Theory. The course description includes “…..denaturalize (hetero)sexuality and (hetero)gender categories, identities and expression.” Asks “what is queer politics and how, in what way, or to what degree is sexuality political.”

The course fulfills a mandatory diversity requirement.

My curiosity was piqued. Were similar courses taught at other colleges/universities? Was I surprised!

Not only taught, but offered as a major or minor. Described generally as LGBT studies.

I came across a listing of 20 such colleges and universities. The first 5 in order of listing: Cornell University, University of California-Berkeley, Stanford University, Brown University, and Towson University.

I graduated from college 61 years ago. No such courses taught. Homosexuality here and there in a psychology course. Buried in the closet for all intents and purposes. Transgenderism unheard of. The major was titled “Psychology.” The generality. Nothing more.

Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou this evening. A podcast. Nine my time. Join me. Guaranteed interesting. A quick half hour of provocative meanderings. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

 

TRAGEDY BEYOND COMPREHENSION

Normally this blog consists of several different topics. This morning, only one. The story so horrible and sympathetic required it stand alone.

Ed Bledsoe, his wife Melody, and their two great grandchildren, lived together in Shasta County, California. Ed and Melody were raising the great grandchildren who referred to them as Grandpa and Grandma. The great grandchildren four year old Emily and five year old James.

Ed talked to his wife and great grandchildren before they tragically died in one of the California fires.

Last thursday, Ed left home to keep a doctor appointment. The raging fires were of no concern. Not near his home. Neighbors not concerned. Never advised by authorities to evacuate.

Ed was at the doctor’s office. He received a call on his cell phone from his wife Melody. She could see fire!

Ed rushed home. Drove, ran, drove again. Got close, but not close enough.

He spent his families’ final seconds with  them on a cell phone.

Five year old James: “Grandpa, come and get me. The fire is coming in the back door.”

Grandpa: “I’m right down the road.”

Four year old Emily: “I love you Grandpa.”

Grandma: “I love you. Come and get us.”

Grandpa: “I’m on the way.”

James was the last to talk to his grandfather. He talked to him till he died.

 

 

THE EVIL THAT MEN DO…..

Another immigration story. Involving a child. A 15 year old Honduran girl separated from her parents. She most recently has been kept at the Homestead Shelter for Unaccompanied Children. A detention center.

She escaped.

She ran down the streets of Homestead crying. Finally into a large auto shop. She cowered in a corner. Would not stop crying.

The owner was sympathetic. Everyone was sympathetic.

The girl was scared. Begged not to be sent back.

The police were called who in turn called Shelter officials. The girl was returned to the Shelter.

Ever to be seen again? To be treated well although she ran away? Will she disappear into the bureaucratic morass? Someone should track her existence to make sure no harm comes to her.

I cannot explain why, however I worry whether we are entering into a scenario similar to a returned escaped black in the South or a returned German concentration camp escapee. May sound crazy. However a lot of strange things have been occurring with regard to immigrants and their children in recent months. Nothing would surprise me.

I had planned to remain in last night. A restful evening in bed watching TV. Was not to be. Donna telephoned and said Terri would be singing with Larry Baeder at Blue Macaw.

Spent 3 hours at Blue Macaw with Donna and Terri. Terri her usual spectacular self. Larry Baeder always good.

It rained while we were sitting at the bar. Rain does not describe it. It poured! Then a strong wind. We were protected from the rain by the bar roof. The wind however began blowing the rain in sideways. Got slightly wet.

Key West weather was strange yesterday. The rain last night. The only rain of the day. At noon however, there was thunder. For about a half hour. The sun was shining. The thunder louder than normal. Real loud! One bang after another.

One of Key West’s most popular charity fundraisers is Schooner Wharf Bar’s Battle of the Bars. Next Sunday, the 25th anniversary of the event.

Key West bars participate. All kinds of fun and games whose purpose is to raise monies this year for the Southernmost Boys and Girls Club and the Sister Season Fund.

BOB’s next report concerns Bob Smith going “spiritual.”

Bob was kayaking in the back country. He was sitting on a beach eating lunch. The beach a part of a small uninhabited key.

I used to boat with Bob back when. He would take me out on his small sailboat. Always brought food. We would stop at some uninhabited key and lunch on the beach.

Bob saw a stone sticking up out of the sand. Square. Not small. A tablet. Later discovered to weigh 300 pounds.

There was writing chiseled on it.

Took Bob quite a while to dig it out. Then on the kayak to be brought to Key West. The 300 pound tablet almost sunk or tipped the kayak several times.

The tablet created quite a stir when it arrived in Key West. Bob glamorized it. Referred to the tablet as the “…..first of the new commandments…..Thou Shalt Not Start a Process Thou Cannot Reverse.”

Imagine the implications. Christian Churches were up in arms. Scientists wanted to test the stone.

Bob said no to testing. Shrugged his shoulders as to Church concern. He knew exactly what to do with the tablet. He wanted to place it over the bar at the West Indies Lounge. Nadine the owner would have not of it. She said no.

Bob thought Nadine did not see the value in exhibiting the tablet over the bar. Increased patronage would result. A bit of an upscale crowd. The wine list could be changed to show the better and more expensive stuff. Wine goblets purchased.

I don’t know what happened next. The story ends there.

Israel under Netanyahu has become too big for its britches. Netanyahu himself has turned into an authoritarian figure. One example is that Israel today is the world leader in assassinations.

Mossad is Israel’s secret police. Mossad generally does the assassinations. Since the end of World War II, Israel has been responsible for more deaths by assassination than any other country. Murders committed with more frequency in the past 10 years. Eight hundred during those 10 years.

The Jews suffered greatly at the hands of another authoritarian figure. Adolph Hitler. It seems Israel is adopting some of his methods.

Hot Dog Church at 4 at Aqua. I cannot make it. However, I plan to be at the Orchid Bar at 6 where Arthur will be bartending. Then  to the Rum Barrel where Lauri will be bartending.

Enjoy your Sunday!

CHEATING DOESN’T PAY…..CAN BE COSTLY

Our laws are derived from English law. Going hundreds of years back. Referred to as the Common Law.

One of the laws from days of old was referred to as alienation of affection. A lawsuit brought by a deserted spouse against a third party who is blamed for the failure of the marriage. In short, one spouse cheats and the cheating spouse falls in love with that person. He/she leaves her spouse for the other.

Alienation lawsuits don’t seem to fit into thinking in the U.S. the past 100 years. People want to play and not pay.

As a result, most States threw out alienation of affection as a ground to recover money damages. Only 7 States permit such lawsuits today: Hawaii, Illinois, New Mexico, North Carolina, South Dakota and Utah.

A recent North Carolina case evidenced the danger in stealing another man’s wife where the law permits a dollar recovery. The man who cheated with the husband’s wife had a judgment returned against him for $8.8 million.

An expensive piece of ass!

Good time at the Chart Room last night. John bartending. Kevin, Holly and David at the bar.

Larry Smith and wife Christine showed up. I have never seen either in the Chart Room. They were entertaining visiting family and friends from Pennsylvania.

The Pier House’s Wine Galley was Larry’s room. He entertained there for more than 10 years. Music and drink. The room generally filled. The Wine Galley several years ago was turned into a restaurant. Sad. Larry gave the Wine Galley a magic touch. Difficult to replace.

The Blue Macaw afterwards for chicken wings and a drink. Paul and Ron at the bar. Good food and good company.

The Key West weatherman is at it again. Hot today with widely separated thunder showers. He advises, “Pick your favorite storm.”

Tomorrow night will be partly cloudy with a thunder shower. He said, “Plants drink free.”

The Federal Reserve is concerned about inflation. They have suggested interest rates might be raised slightly.

Trump is concerned with inflation also. He does not want interest rates raised. He claims the economy is good and he wants to keep it good full throttle.

The danger with a rising economy is inflation. Interest rates are raised to cool the economy a bit.

The inflation of concern to the Federal Reserve is minimal. Not everywhere, however. Venezuela inflation rose 60,000 percent this past year. A cup of cafe con leche costs over 1 million bolivar.

Things are tough in Venezuela!

Yesterday, Trump announced the GDP (Gross Domestic Product) had risen to 4.1 percent in the second quarter of 2018. Admirable! Trump to be congratulated. The highest the GDP has been since 2014.

I find it difficult to accept the 4.1 percent GDP. The GDP is a composition of figures/numbers. Not saying the Trump people would do this, but numbers are easily manipulated to produce a desired result. A fudged result. A form of lying.

Even if valid, where will the GDP be in 6-9 months when the impact of the tariff wars hit? Not even close to a 4!

Trump also advised yesterday that 3.7 million new jobs were created. The highest ever. Not correct.

In the 19 months beginning December 2016 and ending June 2018, 3.7 million new jobs were added. Compare that figure to the 4.3 million jobs that were added in the 19 months before Trump’s election.

I fear for the economy. I have been predicting a recession next year. The market is overinflated. The impact of the tariff wars not yet experienced. Corporations are not pouring their tax savings into employee pockets. They are instead buying up the company’s stock.

Madeleine Albright’s Fascism brings to a reader’s attention a reason why authoritarian figures rise: “Men and women who had despaired of political change suddenly felt in touch with the answers they had been seeking…..rallies, where they discovered kindred souls keen to restore greatness to the nation.”

We continue to live in a society where the rich get richer while the poor poorer. The economy is going to be the major issue in November.

Trump has surrounded himself with the rich.

One example is Education Secretary Betsy De Vos. It was reported her $40 million 163 foot yacht was set adrift by vandals at a Northern Ohio Marina. A pic ran with the article. The yacht is 3 stories high.

The Secretary’s husband is former CEO of Amway. Their combined net worth estimated at $1.3 billion.

The Secretary’s brother is Eric Prince. Prince of Blackwater fame. He provides contract soldiers (mercenaries) to our government. For a fee, of course. He presently has another company doing the same work. If I recall correctly, a Prince company helped provide shelters and care for the immigration children taken from their parents.

The Secretary’s father a person of affluence also.

Forbes listed Dad’s family (father, daughter Betsy, son Eric, etc.) as the 88th richest family in America. Their net worth estimated at $5.4 billion.

BOB tired. He said writing yesterday’s article on Fantasy Fest Nudity took a lot out of him. He needs to rest.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

FANTASY FEST NUDITY

BOB’s observations, thoughts and opinions re Fantasy Fest nudity.

Every year at Fantasy Fest time, a group of religious and/or concerned citizens form a Christian Coalition or some other group to  protest what they perceive as a sinful event.

Nudity the primary concern. Personal parts being exhibited. At the time Bob Smith wrote BOB in the mid 1990’s, body painting to cover breasts and genitals had become popular. Total nudity was illegal. Flamingos, palm trees, and flowers became works of art. A woman’s breast the canvas.

Kiosks appeared on Duval. Body painting took place in public. Everyone could view the woman’s nude breasts being covered.

The religious/civic groups were opposed to the public display of breasts during their painting. The issue was resolved. A compromise. Body painting prohibited in public places. Body painting went indoors. Various Duval Street businesses made room for the art work to be done. Everyone made money off the paintings.

BOB considered the resolution folly. The whole issue stupid. Two interesting BOB quotes.

Bob Smith told BOB, “Man cannot live without whim alone.” BOB wrote, “I am appalled…..how we have gotten into this mess.”

Bob Smith said, “Now is the time for all good men to come and get laid in the country.”

Let me bring you up to date on the nudity situation.

Given a person an inch and he/she will take a foot. So it went.

Body painting developed. A woman’s whole body. From the hairline on her head to her toes. No clothing, no pasties. Body all one color. Breasts/nipples painted over. Even a woman’s privates. The time had not yet arrived when women were shaving their pubic hair. The painter merely painted over the pubic hair. The ladies so “covered” walked around.

The religious coalition got back into the act. Full body painting not proper. Nipples and genitalia still could be seen.

Several years of negotiating and the resolution was to cover the nipples with pasties and the female genitalia and buttocks with fully opaque clothing. A bikini bottom would suffice.

Full body painting died out. Why go through all the trouble if a pair of pasties and a small bottom resolved the situation.

The thong came into vogue. The bikini bottom gave way to the thong. A woman’s buttocks in clear view. Not legal, though remains overlooked at the present time.

Some women continue to merely have their breasts and/or chests painted with a tropical bird, etc. The art work lovely. Lasts about 5 days. Women can shower without fear of it washing off.

Give me an inch and I’ll take a foot continued to prevail, however. A few years ago, swingers discovered Fantasy Fest. They came to town and changed the adult flavor of Fantasy Fest. Advanced it to their level of adult fun. Glaring nudity. Occasions of public sex.

Interestingly, at this point the community came together in opposition to the swinger modifications to the event. Those who previously disagreed with the religious coalitions, now agreed. It was a step too far. The swinger aspect lasted only one Fantasy Fest. Everything back to normal thereafter. Whatever that may be.

Male genitalia exposure a problem. Few men do it. Some however enjoy showing off their manhood. Some cover the area with a small piece of cloth which when a step is taken that which was covered peeks out.

If I were to list present day rules, they would be no showing of genitals, no exposed female nipples, no exposed public hair, no public sex. Plus, no fun. The last sentence added by me as a joke.

My yesterday began with a haircut. Lori back from a 2 week Maine vacation. Then lunch at Sandy’s Cafe a few doors down.

My book reading is sporadic. I do so much researching on the internet, I have little time left to read. I seem to be back into reading of late.

I read 2 or 3 books at a time. Move back and forth as the mood strikes me. Two at the moment. Madeleine Albright’s Fascism and Peter Schweizer’s Secret Empires.

Spent the afternoon reading both.

The Chart Room first last night. Met a very interesting couple. Chris and Carrie from Pennsville, New Jersey. First time in Key West. Love it.

Chris is an engineer. Carrie, a nurse. They have 3 children. Nineteen, ten and four.

Chris and Carrie are unique in a certain respect. Each obtained their college degrees later than normal. Chris at 30. Carrie even later.

I enjoyed their company.

Sheila and David arrived. Not together. I have not seen them in ages.

Even Ollie showed up.

David, Ollie and I had a pleasant conversation. Flashes of wisdom make an appearance when you hear David and Ollie express themselves on a subject.

Stopped at the Blue Macaw for a bite to eat. Great Happy Hour! From 4-9. I like that it runs late. I enjoyed ribs at 8.

Ron and Paul at the other end of the bar. They bought me a drink. I was not aware till after they left and I went to pay my bill. Thank you Paul and Ron.

A very attractive woman sitting next to me at the bar. From Maine. We talked about the tariff impact on Maine’s lobster industry. Bad!

She was not aware that the lobster industry exists in the Keys also. Not as large as Maine’s. Significant, however. Spiny lobsters are a multi-million dollar business in the Keys. Largest customers China and Japan. Our lobster fishermen will be taking a hit, also.

Donna and Terri live across the street from the Blue Macaw. They love the area. Terri says it reminds her of the Village in the 1970’s. I stopped and visited my ladies for a while.

Terri was stretched out on the couch. Not feeling well. Donna tired. Worked 10 hours. Bear happy to see me.

Donna is a concierge. On the side, she makes jewelry. Has been doing it for years. She had a showing earlier in the evening. Sold some pieces.

I forgot. Never made it. The first thing she asked when I arrived: Where were you? Embarrassing.

Yesterday hot! Hot hot! Ninety five degrees. Fortunately, very little humidity.

Enjoy your day!