It was 4 in the afternoon yesterday. I was settled in. My game plan to watch the two semi-final college football games. The second game would end about 11:30. In time for me to catch the ball falling in New York City and then Sushi in the shoe at Bourbon Street. Sushi is carried every year on CNN.

The telephone rang. It was Dee.

She asked, where are we going? Going to what, I asked. Dinner, she said. My response: Holy shit, I forgot!

Dee left to weeks ago to visit family up north for Christmas. She telephoned before she left and said we should have an early dinner together New Year’s Eve. I was to make the arrangements.

It completely escaped me!

I stopped going out on New Year’s Eve years ago. Age, too many people, amateur night, parking a problem. Additionally, I am out many evenings each week. Any night out in Key West is like New Year’s Eve.

What to do? Dee said, we ARE going out! I said yes, BUT you make a reservation somewhere, figure out the parking, and get me home early. Your headache!

Dee called back 10 minutes later. Take a shower and get ready. I will pick you up at 5:30. Dinner at 6 at Martin’s. I will drive and park at the Gato building.

I was ready. Dee not unhappy with me. Chastised me not. We have been friends 25 years. She understands me.

A great evening! Martin’s packed. We had a terrific table on the back side of the bar. Dined on lobsters and champagne. We chatted, we laughed.

Dee pulled off the last minute reservation well. She is an old friend of one of the Martin brothers. He took good care of her.

Dee looked the best I have seen her. She was diagnosed four years ago with a #4 throat cancer. Two years of surgeries, chemo, radiation, etc. followed. Dee took a beating.

She made it, however. God was good.

I was home at 9:15. In bed at 9:30. Intended to watch TV till midnight and watch the ball drop in New York City. Followed by Sushi at Bourbon Street.

Never happened. I fell asleep immediately. The champagne. Slept well. Did not wake once. Opened my eyes this morning rested. Raring to go today.

Today is Meet the Press at 10. Followed by Syracuse/Boston College basketball at noon. The opening of the ACC season. Syracuse a 1o point favorite. Hope the prediction remains true.

Enjoy your New Year day!


Tonight, my podcast show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

Blog Talk radio had a technical difficulty last week. My show never aired. Neither I nor listeners were able to get in.

Last week’s lead topic never heard will be presented tonight. The American Christmas Story. Two days after Christmas. The story still fitting. One most of you have not heard. A touch of paganism, its celebration banned in Boston in the late 1600s, not a celebrated holiday during our revolutionary years, A Christmas Carol, Civil War impact, Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus, and on and on till today.

Join me at 9 my time. A quick interesting half hour.

Last night, Aqua! Monday night. Dueling bartenders time.

Liz and friends Mary and Josefina at the bar. I joined them.

Liz’s relative Christina was there. With Brian. Liz and Christina are related. Christina and Brian Liz’s house guests for the holiday.

Sheila at the other end of the bar. Went over for a kiss.

Tom and Rick singing. Bria a visiting performer. She stopped by for a moment and gave me absolution once more for my poorly expressed thoughts concerning her several weeks ago.

Tom sitting next to me. Met him for the first time. His wife Claire with him. I did not get to talk with Claire unfortunately.

Tom, a retired attorney. A major law firm partner. He and Claire live in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Key West visitors for many years. Snowbirds. Presently here for a four month stay.

Claire has an interesting background. Initially, a science teacher. Then returned to school herself and obtained a Doctorate. In statistics. Returned to the working world as a professional statistician.

Walked over to Bourbon St. following Aqua. Bria sings monday nights. I was unaware she would be appearing also at Aqua last night. I enjoy Bria’s singing so treated myself to seeing her twice in one evening in two different venues.

Syracuse basketball tonight. Cornell. Syracuse should win.

The true test of the team’s ability begins January 1 when the ACC starts its season. Syracuse plays Boston College New Year’s Day.

I fear I am going to bleed a lot of orange this season!

Debra and Patrick back in town! Great entertainers. The best. There was a time they spent the season at La Te Da. No more. They moved north to Richmond, Virginia. Return sporadically to Key West.

Tuesday January 3, Debra and Patrick will appear at Virgilio’s as part of Skipper Kripitz’s League of Crafty Musicians. On saturday January 7, they will appear from 5-8 at Salute’s Sunset Happy Hour.

Do yourself a favor. Go listen to Debra sing and Patrick play.

Only in Key West. This saturday at noon the annual Dachshund Walk. Other dogs may participate. Costumes suggested. Noon at the Monroe County Courthouse.

Enjoy your day!


Howard Livingston is an outstanding entertainer! Leaves you smiling and happy. His wife Cindy a great lady. The perfect couple.

I knew Howard before he was Howard Livingston. Back when he wore three piece suits, had short cropped hair and always a clean shaven face. At the time, he was CEO and owner of a Chicago manufacturing plant. The plant made railroad engine diesel parts.

We met at Mangoes some 15 years ago. By accident. Howard and his then wife, me and my then wife. We bonded instantly and became close friends.

It was a cold January day. Sun shining. Winter in the Keys. Long pants, etc. I was down. Sort of depressed. Did not know why. Howard happened to call. He sensed it. He said…..Hey man, come on  up and you and I will go out on the boat. I said we’ll freeze. He said dress for it.

I did. Pajama bottoms covered by long pants. Shirt, sweat shirt and heavy up north type winter jacket. A hat and gloves.

It was cold out on the water. I froze my ass off in spite of the clothing.

Howard grounded the boat on Marvin Key. Howard handed me two plastic chairs. He carried a half gallon of Beefeaters and some glasses. He walked me to a line of trees. Within five minutes, both of us were stripped to the chest. The trees broke the cold wind. The sun reflected on us from the sand.

We sat for hours. Sipping. Chatting. Sitting quietly. Snoozing a bit.

Cell phones were not terrific back then. Reception always questionable. On Marvin Key, I would have expected no one could reach me. I received a call. Surprisingly.

The call was from my office in Utica. The purpose was to inform me that we had just settled a particular case for $2 million. Our fee $600,000 plus.

I felt better. Instantly. It was either a combination of the place and call. Or, the call itself.

Howard said it was time to eat. We walked back to the boat. Howard cooked tuna steaks and vegetables on a grill on the back of his boat. We sat on the plastic chairs in the water as we ate.

Howard knew how to live! He still does today. He loves being a musician, singer, and song writer. His new life. Better than the three button suit.

Why Howard and Cindy today? I ran into the two of them at Roostica last night. We rarely see each other these days. He works constantly. We chatted a while. He and Cindy wonderful people.

I spent most of yesterday completing my research and then writing this week’s KONK Life column. One of the best I have done. Involves Social Security and how we are being screwed by the government. The article is titled The Looting of Social Security. Read it if you can. It publishes wednesday. A guaranteed eye opener.

Enjoy your day!