KEY WEST BEWARE…..GILLEAN AND ROZALYN IN TOWN

Met them last night! Two lovelies from Virginia Beach! Gillean and Rozalyn!

At the Blue Macaw.

Lovely fails to describe them sufficiently. Beautiful! Early 30’s. Arrived yesterday. Staying till tuesday. Guarantee they will leave their imprint on Key West.

Gillean in marketing. Rozalyn a nurse.

They already had a list of must do/see things. Garden of Eden at the top of the list. Gillean can’t wait to go topless. Excited.

Both experienced divers. Plan on exploring the reef.

I suggested several places to play, eat and drink. Rozalyn put them all into her cell phone.

I suspect I will run into them. The Garden of Eden the best spot. However, I have not been on the roof in years. My heart no longer can handle the three flights of steep stairs. If I could make it, my heart probably would not be able to handle what I would see up there.

Hopefully we will see each other again sunday morning at the Hard Rock Cafe brunch. Terri and Larry Baeder will be singing. Guaranteed monday at Dueling Bartenders.

Started my yesterday at Sandy’s Cafe for lunch. Then to Publix. I really needed groceries!

Some reading in the afternoon. Still going through Madeleine Albright’s Fascism. I highly recommend it. She traces modern day authoritarian figures beginning with Mussolini and Hitler. Leads up to Trump.

The Chart Room first last night. John bartending. One of Key West’s great personalities.

Met 2 guys. One from Scranton. The other originally from Albany, his wife Rochester. My home town Utica in the middle.

They were headed over to Michael’s for dinner.

Met Dion. Another lovely. An evening for lovely women!

Dion from Jamaica. I have visited twice. Many years ago. We talked about then and now. Interesting.

A tragedy yesterday. Of monumental proportions. Donna and Terri had Bear neutered. His testicles snipped. Horrendous! The mere thought bothers me.

Bear not a happy camper last night.

David Wolkowsky keeps popping up the past couple of weeks. My friend will be 99 saturday. A small party of 25 planned. I am invited. Can’t wait. An intimate event as only David can arrange.

David is Mr. Key West. If not for him, the Key West of today would not exist.

David bought a key 10 miles off Key West in 1974. Ballast Key. He constructed a magnificent home. All the amenities, although 10 miles off shore.

In his earlier days, he entertained big time at Ballast Key. World and national figures including British Prime Minister Edward Heath and Leonard Bernstein. His forever friend Jimmy Buffett a frequent guest.

David’s menu always the same. Champagne, hot dogs and chips.

A move is underway to rename Ballast Key to David Wolkowsky Key. This past week, the Monroe County Commission approved the change. Next, the approval of the federal government is required. The U.S. Board of Geographic Names. If they approve, the change will take take effect 5 years following David’s death.

Things never get better in Venezuela. Yet Maduro survives. Amazing.

The economy is in the shit house. Has been for several years. People do not have enough food. Several years ago, they ate their pets and zoo animals. People have trained themselves to eat every other day. Even babies.

Desperate times bring on desperate deeds. Many Venezuelans have turned to piracy. Old time piracy. Blackbeard’s type. Venezuelan pirates are rampaging the Caribbean in the vicinity of Trinidad and Tobago. Attacking yachts and fishing vessels.

Criminal chaos unleashed.

One victim who survived a pirate attack reported his group were doused with hot oil, hacked with machetes, and thrown overboard. Following which their boat was taken.

Manafort’s trial goes to the jury today. He spent a lot of money on items associated with the good life. Ten thousand dollar custom made suits an example.

Manafort has been sitting during the trial dressed to the nines, except he wears no socks. Turns out as a prisoner he can only wear government issued white socks. He is in court wearing magnificent suits and shoes. No socks! White socks do not go with his attire. He would rather go without.

The U.S. does not belong in Syria. Never the less, we are there. As is Russia and several other nations. All want a piece of the pie, ultimate control, etc. Russia and the U.S. till recently on opposite  sides. Trump however has us moving closer to being in bed with Russia.

Putin believes Russia will be involved with Syria for the long term. Hopefully forever. He is pulling a Hitler trick to assure such. He is after the Syrian youth.

Beginning this year, Syrian children will be permitted to attend Russian military academies in Russia. The first group begins September 1. The Syrians permitted to attend are the children of Syrian war heroes. Those who died in the long bloody Syrian conflict.

The intention is to develop the children into the military elite of the Syrian Arab Republic. Within 15 years, a sufficient number will have made it through the program and will control the Syrian military.

All Russian brain washed.

The program has been approved by a Russian governmental decree. Means Putin approved. It is referred to as “adaptation training.”

Hitler did something similar with the Hitler Youth. Hitler’s attitude then and Putin’s now: Get them while their young!

Enjoy your day!

 

ANOTHER DAY OF BEAUTIFUL SOUND

Terri White two days in a row! Nothing could be better!

Terri was guest performer last night at Aqua. She participated with Tom Luna and Rick Dery in Dueling Bartenders.

Her voice…..Magnificent! The woman a top notch vocalist. The crowd went crazy for her tune renditions.

The entire show was good. How could it not be? A trio of great singers…..Tom Luna, Rick Dery and Terri White.

Do yourself a favor. Stop by some monday evening 5:50-8-00 and enjoy!

Tom looking better. Still recovering from a kidney stone surgery. Needs to put back on a few more pounds.

Donna was there, of course. The lovely Jean Thornton, also. She leaves tomorrow for her home in Birmingham. Key West will not know her again till October 15. I will miss her.

Sheila and John at the end of the bar.

Joe Phillips came over to say hello. We had met some time back. He and his wife relatively new to Key West. His wife, Andrea Phillips. Both veterans. Several tours of duty each. Joe’s first actual war engagement was Kuwait.

Donna and others were headed over to Antonia’s for dinner. The $10 summer pasta special. Too many carbs for me. I am protecting my diet. Begged off. Went to Sandy’s Cafe instead for a Cuban cheese toast and diet soda.

I mentioned yesterday that Antonia’s appeared to be closed at this time of the summer. I was wrong. Only sundays till the end of September.

Cuban dancing music saturday night in Key West. At the Key West Theater. The show Havana Nights Cuba. A combination of Havana spirits and Latin rhythms.

The beat exciting!

Sometimes the public is kept ignorant. Intentionally. I came across an item this morning that has not appeared yet in the media. It involves Peter Strzok, the FBI Special Agent fired this week. Trump considered his firing a great victory.

The information I came across indicated Strozk still a Federal employee. He had two jobs. Worked for the FBI and CIA. He is the Section Chief of the CIA’s Counterespionage Group. Served as such in recent years while also serving as Deputy Assistant Director of the FBI’s Counterintelligence Division.

If true, the man was sheep dipped. In intelligence work means he had an alternate identity.

True or false? Time will tell. Quickly, I assume.

If true, nothing wrong with it. Merely shows Trump is not as smart as he thinks. He does not know everything. Nor do those who closely work with him.

The crazies keep coming out to public view. Persons way out who want to be in government.

The most recent is New York’s Carl Paladino. A very wealthy man. Lives in New York’s 27th Congressional District. The Buffalo-Rochester area. The District where present Representative Chris Collins announced following his arrest for insider trading that he would not be running for reelection.

The seat a solid Republican one.

Paladino totally off the wall. He ran for Governor against Cuomo. Lost by 30 points. He was Co-Chair of Trump’s New York Campaign.

Similar to Trump in many ways. Loud, conservative and known for insulting people.

He reminds me of Ohio Congressman Jim Jordan. One difference. Jordan is a pussy compared to Paladino.

Paladino is anti-immigrant. In 2015, he bemoaned “non-Americans walking around.” Another time, he denounced the “damn Asians coming here to go to school.”

Even worse, he is anti-black. Anti-Obamas definitely. He once said of Barack Obama, “Barack should die from mad cow disease.” Not a friend of Michelle’s either: “A man who should go live with gorillas.”

The nuts run because normal people are reluctant to enter today’s extremely dirty political fray.

Paladino is running in a Republican primary for the seat.

Strange things happen. This one I do not understand. There has to be a legitimate reason for it. George Papadopoulos is scheduled to be sentenced September 7 for lying to the FBI. He has been cooperating with the Mueller team.

Mueller obtained a protective order yesterday to prevent/prohibit the release of evidence bearing on Papadopoulos. The Court granted Mueller’s request for the protective order immediately.

Does not mean anything wrong. Unusual, however.

Omarosa and the tapes. Wowie! She spent 15 years working with Trump. First on the Apprentice and then in the White House. A long relationship. In some fashion, she is going to blow the whistle on the President.

The 15 year relationship does not make sense. Trump not known for long term relationships. There has to be a glue that kept them together. It would be extremely amusing if one or more of the tapes involved sex.

Tonight the night! My podcast show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. A quick half hour of interesting and eye opening occurrences.

Join me. Guaranteed you will enjoy. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

KEY WEST…..WE’RE COOKING

 

It’s hot! No question about it. The hottest July ever. August will probably be hotter. Followed by historically the hottest of the hot…..September.

Yesterday, the weatherman said relief would be available. It was going to be breezy. It was. Learned something. Hot and no breeze,  hot. Hot with breeze, still hot. Perhaps worse.

As I was walking yesterday with the hot air blowing in my face, I was reminded of the 1940’s when our house was heated by a coal furnace. My job to keep the coal fire burning. Replace the burned out coal.

Every time I opened the furnace door, a blast of hot air hit me in the face. Yesterday, the same sensation.

Spent part of the afternoon reading. Still with Madeleine Albright’s Fascism. The primary fascists of almost a 100 years ago were Mussolini and Hitler. Trump so much like them.

Aqua for Dueling Bartenders at 6. Tom Luna and Rick Dery doing the entertaining.

Tom has not been present for 3 weeks. He was diagnosed with diverticulitis. Treated for it. Not diverticulitis. Kidney stones. Had surgery for the kidney stones a few days ago.

Liz and Josefina at the bar when I arrived. Liz looked lovely. She was happy to be there.

Jean Thornton came in. We sat together. She looked good and smelled good. Told her so. Love the lady!

Jean complained about the heat. Said she has begun staying in during the day to avoid it. Sounded familiar.

Normally, Jean and I would have had dinner together. I had to beg off. My podcast is tonight and I had to work on the show last night.

Join me at 9 tonight for the podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. A fast moving, interesting, and eye opening account of how I see things. You do not have to agree with me. It is good however to hear what might be a different set of thoughts. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

I am a poor sleeper. Leave the TV in the bedroom on all night so I can watch something during the hours sleep escapes me. The bedroom TV went kaput about 2 monday morning.

I called Comcast. Had to wait 30 minutes for a live person. We had a communication problem. I could not understand her. Probably from east Istanbul.

After another hour of her directing me to do this and that, TV still not working. Comcast needs to send a repair person over. No one available till thursday morning.

Can’t win!

The battle between the 2 Sandy Cafes has been resolved. Settled. Details of the settlement unavailable.

A significant election in Ohio today. A special election in Ohio’s 12th Congressional district. Takes in Columbus and a wide suburban swath surrounding it.

Republican country. Thirty five years since a Democrat has held the seat. Trump won the district by 11 points.

Today’s election has become a testing ground for November. The Democratic candidate was far behind at the beginning. Today, a dead heat. Trump was in the area over the weekend campaigning for the Republican candidate.

Politicos believe suburban wives will decide the election. Most are Republicans. However, most are upset with Trump’s child separation policy.

If the Democrat wins, it foretells a blue November. If the Democrat loses by 3 points or less, the same.

We will know tonight.

A new national poll indicates Trump’s largest bloc of supporters are white persons without college degrees. Fifty four percent.

I believe the group supports Trump because they feel the country has left them behind. They believe they need governmental programs that will help them. Most are middle aged and older. They are disappointed with how life has treated them. There has been no American dream.

Dorothy Downs is an interesting woman. Among other things, an author. An expert regarding certain Indian tribes. She and her husband lived in Miami and had a second home in Key West. He has passed on.

Dorothy continues to inhabit the homes in both locales. A frequent Key West visitor.

Dorothy has a political streak in her. She is supporting Gwen Graham in the Democratic primary for Governor. Personal friends for years.

She recently wrote and asked how the race looked in Key West. I replied I did not know who was running, except for a fellow by the name of Green. His TV ads were excellent.

Dorothy made me feel ashamed that I was not paying attention and did not know of her friend.

Let me share with you what I have learned about Gwen Graham.

She is way ahead in the polls. Burying her opponents. Her father is former Florida Governor and U.S. Senator Bob Graham. A distinguished statesman of the old school. Knew how to negotiate with the opposition and was not afraid to do so.

Dorothy wrote, “Being a public servant is born in Gwen’s DNA.”

Gwen is an attorney, was a stay at home Mom for 13 years, a PTA president, a school administrator, and a one term Congresswoman.

I will be paying close attention to Gwen. The primary is August 28.

They say this is the Year of the Woman. Probably so. I for one would like to see all women elected to every post. Men have done enough damage.

I close with a recent Trump tweet.

California is being devastated with fires. Trump indicated that the fires were ongoing due to a shortage of water. He claimed water that could be used to fight fires was “foolishly being diverted into the Pacific Ocean.”

No one understands the statement. Water supply has been sufficient. No one has complained of a lack of water causing the fires to spread, etc.

Many believe climate change is the cause of more severe and destructive fires. This has been the hottest summer across the U.S.

Perhaps Trump does not wish to acknowledge climate change. He has consistently been on the side of those who deny it.

Enjoy your day!

 

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!

HUMPTY DUMPTY

I just completed my Key West Lou Live show on Facebook. Three minutes of rambling on a particular object. This morning…..Humpty Dumpty. The Mother Goose rhyme.

Remember the words: “Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, / Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.”

In 1925, the song I’m Sitting On Top Of The World was written. It was later popularized by Dean Martin, Doris Day and Bobby Darin. A phrase in the song: “…..just like Humpty Dumpty, I’m gonna fall.”

Donald Trump is Humpty Dumpty. He’s gonna fall!

Even though 89 percent of his party love him and a good percentage of the American people do also, his failures are mounting. Most recently, Kim at Singapore, Putin at Helsinki, and the tariff wars.

I have been predicting the tariff wars would take their toll. A recession by next year. It is beginning. Soy bean farmers, lobster fishermen, potato farmers, and car manufacturers, amongst others, are complaining. They are hurting and will hurt worse.

The Mueller investigation is at Trump’s door.

He is in his last mile.

Dueling Bartenders last night at Aqua. Terri my date. She was not working. A customer, though she did sing a song or two. Donna arrived later. She had been working.

Rick Dery and Heather-May performing. Tom Luna not for some reason.

Jean Thornton was there. My friend forever. I am indebted to her.

The girls from saturday night at Blue Heaven. Debbie, the other half of the Golden Girls, Sharon, Megan and Mary. Kevin and Holly experienced Dueling Bartenders for the first time. Good friend Joseph arrived with Linda and Barbara.

Hank came over to say hello. He was in the Hemingway Look-a -Like contest this weekend. One hundred fifty one Hemingways participated.

He said we had met 5 years ago at the Chart Room. Hank has been participating for 25 years. Says he will never win. But fun!

He gave me a gift. A Hemingway chain he received during the competition. Inscribed on it: “Write drunk, edit sober.” Signed, Ernest Hemingway.

A pleasing gift. I will wear it on occasion. I an Italian-American who never wore neck jewelry in his life!

Thanks again, Hank.

Dinner at Hard Rock Cafe with Donna and Terri. Ribs. So good! I could not finished them. My lunch later today.

Tonight, my podcast show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. A slew of interesting subjects. Join me for a quick moving half hour. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Lauri, Lauri, Lauri. Seventeen years worked at Aqua. She gave her notice. She is moving on. To the Rum Barrel. She will be working the bar wednesday, friday and saturday nights.

A new watering hole for me.

Key West is experiencing budget problems. In all my years in Key West, this is the first time I have heard it. Irma a contributing factor.

City Commissioners are doing the right thing. They are cutting the budget. I have no objection. Every now and then, we all have to tighten our belts.

My concern is that if one is to suffer, all should suffer. Ergo, I do not understand why City employees are scheduled to get a 4 percent pay raise.

BOB is recovering from last night. Says he plans on completing the Fantasy Fest portion of his story tomorrow. Recommends it be read.

One portion will cover that time when women walked about nude with their bodies covered only with paint. From the hairline down to the toes. Breasts and genitalia merely painted over.

Trump is upset with Kim. The results of the Singapore summit not as Trump thought or reported. What really got to Trump was that he and Kim shook hands on whatever was purportedly agreed to.

Makes me laugh. How many hands did Trump shake in construction deals and then screw people in the end. Not making full payment, claiming work was improperly performed, etc.

His way of doing business. Kim’s also.

The Singapore Summit is turning out to have been a colossal failure and utter waste of time.

When Pompeo flew to North Korea to see Kim and straighten things out, Kim did not meet with Pompeo. He was busy in the fields picking potatoes.

I wrote recently that if China were to sell off U.S. Treasury bonds or fail to purchase new ones as others reached maturity, it would have a dire impact on the American economy.

If we are to believe Trump, Putin is our friend. Friends help, not hurt each other. In March, Russia held $96.1 billion in U.S. Treasury bonds. In April, that number was down to $48.7 billion. In May, $14.9 billion.

Friend Putin is selling us out!

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

AMERICAN PATRIOTISM

A line I read a couple of days ago keeps running through my mind. I want to share it with you: America needs more patriotism, not Trumpism.

Day time yesterday spent as a recluse. Back still sore, though a bit better.

Last night figured a couple of gins combined with the Advil would help. It did.

I did my imbibing at the Chart Room. Charming Dorothy Downs and her friend Carmen there. Enjoyable conversation. Dorothy likes to tell stories as I do. Everything from American Indians to art.

Interesting front page story in the Key West Citizen this morning. The City Commission is seriously thinking about doing something with plastic disposal. Plastic straws and plastic bags the culprits. Plastic items end up in the ocean and cause harm to marine life.

Several stories running on the internet this morning re the plastic issue. Noted that Starbucks has already decided to do something. Starbucks has designed a “strawless lid.” Will not require a straw in order to drink.

McDonald’s in the fray, also. McDonald’s is testing the use of paper straws in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Hope to be fully invested in paper straws in those two locations by the end of next year.

McDonald’s is also testing paper straw use in certain U.S. areas.

A negative factor involved with regard to Key West. Glass not permitted on Duval or other streets. Bars permit drinkers to take booze from a bar. In a plastic glass. The drink must be transferred to a plastic glass in the bar.

An exception for Key West and other communities permitting street consumption of alcohol if in a plastic container?

Ernest Hemingway. A literary giant. One of Key West’s all time favored sons.

He completed A farewell To Arms while living in Key West.

An item of local color not well known involves the book, Hemingway and Agnes von Kurowsky. Agnes was Hemingway’s first love.

Hemingway was a Red Cross driver in Italy during World War I. Eighteen at the time. A mortar shell did a number on his right knee. He was in the hospital for six months.

Agnes was Hemingway’s nurse. They fell in love. The war, the love, Lake Maggiore, all part of A Farewell To Arms.

After recovering, Hemingway was returned to the U.S. Agnes was soon to follow. She did not. Sent him a Dear John letter instead.

Following his ten some years in Key West, Hemingway moved to Cuba. He was residing in Cuba in 1951. The same year Agnes moved to Key  West and worked as a librarian. She lived in Key West till 1965.

Hemingway experts tell us Hemingway never knew she was here. He periodically would return to Key West for a few days. Agnes never tried to communicate with him.

An interesting twist to what may have been the great romance of their lives.

The Thailand soccer team story one for the ages. Good people working hard to bring a proper resolution to a most dangerous situation.

Five of the boys removed as of this morning.

Steve Bannon’s name keeps popping up. A bad influence on Trump. He was part of Trump’s campaign team and worked in the White House for a time.

Bannon’s thinking dangerous. Representative of a twisted mind.

Prior to supporting Trump, Bannon was Executive Chairman of Breitbart News Network. Breitbart supports an alt right platform. Seeks an all white state.

Breitbart/Bannon carried a contrary belief as to how the U.S.should be run. Two inflammatory headlines evidence such: “Birth Control Makes Women Unattractive and Crazy.” “Gay Rights Have Made Us Dumber, It’s Time To Get Back Into The Closet.”

We know tsunamis can be big. How big I never realized. This morning’s World Almanac section of the Key West Citizen reported that on this date in 1958, a megatsunami hit Lituya Bay, Alaska.

One thousand seven hundred twenty feet!

The largest recorded tsunami in history. It was caused by an 8.3 magnitude earthquake off the Alaskan coast.

Evel Knievel was a daring motorcyclist. Up, up, and away on a cycle. His exploits death defying.

He passed on a few years ago.

Travis Pastrana is the new Evel Knievel. Even more daring than Evel. Pastrana is referred to as Michael Jordan on a motorcycle.

This past weekend, Pastrana did a tribute show in Las Vegas honoring Knievel. He performed daring acts while using a motor cycle similar to the ones used by Knievel and while dressed in a Knievel look a like costume.

I share this information with you because I knew Evel Knievel for a short time. It was back in the 1970’s. I had a condominium at the Jockey Club in Miami. My time there the most fun I have ever experienced. My Shangrila.

Knievel was at the Jockey Club for a time. His boat was docked there. A 165 foot job. Touched off with  two motorcycles perched on the back. A sight!

We quickly became friends. The bar and pool brought us together.

One day, he telephoned me. What are you doing, he asked. Sunning myself on the terrace. Throw some clothes in a bag and meet me at the boat in 30 minutes. We’re going to the Bahamas for a few days.

What a time! Never left the boat. About a dozen of us. Party time, big time!

Knievel used to constantly say that he “…..enjoyed life as much as he could.”

He did.

BOB still screwing off.

Dueling Bartenders at Aqua tonight.

Enjoy your day!

 

THE BEST OF BOB

BOB tiny, but powerfully interesting.

Today BOB takes us back to the Key West days when honest and powerful citizens discovered marijuana was the path to easy money. Big money.

Integrity took a back seat.

Key West’s location made it a perfect place to bring marijuana into the country. The Business as it was known developed. A cottage industry. No ties to organized crime. Simple small town folks making an extra dollar.

Boats and planes dropped bales of marijuana into the ocean. The bales became known as square grouper. Locals would boat out and pick up the bales. The bales were brought into Key West and unloaded next to the Coast Guard dock. Then taken home and left in front yards and on roof tops to dry.

An open industry. No one concerned about getting caught.

After dried, the bales were put on a U.S. Mail tractor-trailer for delivery to Miami. The Mail vehicle made the trip every day.

Arrangements were made prior to each trip to accommodate the Sheriff’s Department. If not made, the U.S. Mail vehicle was stopped and fined half the marijuana load.

This scenario went on quite some time. Eventually, the federal government became aware. The “federales” cracked down on the operation. Arrests were made. Trials. Some prominent Key Westers received jail time.

Such the next part of the story. Referred to by BOB as the Afro Sheen Caper. For another day.

Spent last night with Cheryl and Roger. Former Key West snowbirds now living in Cape Coral.

We started the evening at Aqua for Dueling Bartenders. Tom Luna and Rick Dery their usual great selves.

Then to Antonia’s for dinner.

I was surprised how packed Antonia’s was. We are into off season. Restaurants generally empty. Not Antonia’s last night. It must be Antonia’s summer time special. Pasta $10 a serving.

We got the last table.

I like Cheryl and Roger. Interesting people. Sincere. Call it as it is.

A good time was had. We sat and chatted a while after dinner.

I am getting hooked on the Key West Citizen weatherman. Today’s prediction, 89 degrees. In fine print below: “…..afternoon t-storms; bad hair day.”

The bad hair day I found intriguing. Must refer to the humidity. Not a problem for me. My head is shaved bald.

Robots back in the news! A new IBM artificial intelligence creature debated last week in San Francisco two of the world’s champion debaters. The robot held his own. The topic was made known at the start of the debate. No prior preparation for the two human debaters and the robot.

Yesterday’s Justice Building Blog commented on Trump’s announcement that he wanted to close down the immigration courts. Merely arrest and deport. No hearing, no due process.

Such would mean we are a nation of men, not laws. Exactly what we have not been. The Occupied America writer wrote “…..we are occupied by a narcissistic man of limited intelligence, his followers who are equally self obsessed, lacking in self esteem and poorly educated. And the power we fight is nothing less than evil ignorance seeking to end our democracy.”

The looming trade war nothing less than a disaster, also. For the world. The U.S. already hurt. Harley-Davidson’s announcement yesterday that they were moving to Europe. To remain in the U.S. under the tariff percentages being discussed would mean a loss of $100 million a year.

Thank you, Donald Trump!

The EU says the world is heading for a “trade apocalypse.” The World Trade Organization is facing an all but certain demise.

Good job, Mr. President!

All because of one man who does not know what he is doing. I fail to understand how Trump keeps his followers.

On this day in 1956, Congress approved the Federal Highway Act. Thirty billion dollars to construct 41 million miles of interstate highways.

The bill was actually Eisenhower’s baby. He conceived  it and got everyone to work together in a bipartisan effort to bring it to realization. The Highway Act is considered Eisenhower’s greatest domestic achievement.

The bill passed the Senate with one dissenting vote. The House passed it by voice vote. Eisenhower signed it into law three days later.

Cooperation by both parties, the two legislative houses, and the President. Not today! We live in a different world. One bred from hate and evolving because of evil.

A side note. I benefited from the new law. The summer of 1957 found me between college and law school. I drove a dump truck on a highway project outside Rome, NY.

Tonight, podcast time! My podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine, my time. A quick half hour of me venting. My likes and dislikes. Many topics discussed are eye openers. Hidden from public view.

Join me. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

ERIKA BIDDLE…..A MOST INTERESTING WOMAN

The plan was to meet Jean Thornton at Dueling Bartenders last night. Bobby Nesbitt the scheduled guest performer. Found Jean at the bar seated next to Erika Biddle.

I probably have run into Erika no more than five times over the years. She is unique. The woman has tasted much of life. Both good and bad.

Erika was born in Germany in the years immediate following World War II. Though having avoided the war itself, she remembers clearly the destroyed cities, the debris, etc. waiting for reconstruction. Recovery was slow.

She recalls going without food. The lack of food experience was evident later in the evening when we dined at Antonia’s. I never saw a plate so clean at the end of a meal.

Erika came to Key West in 1994 after living in several cities around the world. She was immediately aware Key West was for her. She once said regarding Key West, ” This was the only city I ever visited where I’m not the most eccentric person around. Here I’m the normal one.”

Her eccentricity best reflected in a nudie calendar venture she put together. An avid environmentalist, Erika came up with a way to raise money for environmental purposes.

Former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger once mentioned something to the effect that the environmental cause was best reflected by a nude woman. Soon after, an English movie came out where a bunch of elderly English women needing money for a charity did a nudie calendar of themselves.

Erika was emboldened. She convinced 15 Key West ladies to agree posing for a nudie calendar. Titled: Women Sustaining the Earth. The women between 44 and 78 years of age. All lovely. The calendar tastefully done.

Sold well!

Erika’s life or parts thereof great book material.

It rained for 2 hours early in the afternoon. Big time! Roaring thunder! Brought to mind Zeus, ancient Greece’s sky and thunder god. King of Mount Olympus.

The Key West Citizen’s weather person a humorist.  Yesterday’s prediction: Mostly cloudy, a shower; free car wash. The shower could have been better described. It was a monsoon! The “free car wash” right on. My car shiny bright after the sun dried it off.

I am ahead of the game time wise re my next KONK Life column. This week’s already done and at the printers. It is titled Sit At Attention Or Die. A bit of Kim/Trump. It is the article for a week from tomorrow that I was working on.

A change of pace topic. Felt compelled to get away from Trump. Environmental. About sand. As with water, in short supply world wide. Hard to believe.

Sand is the new gold.

I read yesterday that recent wind storms have affected Florida’s sandy beaches drastically. The sand loss described as Gone With The Wind.

An interesting article in the making.

The music at Dueling Bartenders the best. Always is. Bobby, Tom Luna and Rick Dery made the walls shake.

Bobby recently married Mike Mulligan. They had lived together 37 years. About time! In honor of the nuptials, Bobby sang I’m Getting Married In The Morning from My Fair Lady.

Jean, Erika and Louis walked over to Antonia’s for dinner. Jean and Erika interesting women. I enjoyed being with them.

Diseases come and go. Initially death causing and then man finds the pill/shot making it possible to avoid the sickness.

Yellow fever was a major killer in the mid 1800’s. The Citizen’s Keys History section mentioned that on this date in 1865, the vessel Adventure arrived in Key West in distress. Four crew members had yellow fever. The four were taken to the Marine Hospital.

The yellow fever spread from the four to Army troops stationed in Key West. Three hundred thirty one cases. Seventy one died. The number of civilians infected and dead not recorded.

A thought. Mull it. Conservative Americans are all about family – unless the family has darker skin and is from another country.

Child abuse in the news constantly these days. The immigrant children taken from parents. The abuse takes other forms and occurs on a smaller scale around the country.

An undocumented mother lives in San Antonio with her 4 year old daughter. A San Antonio Sheriff deputy was having sex with the four year old. Apparently on a regular basis.

The four year old told her mother over the weekend. The mother confronted the officer. He did not deny. He made it clear however that if she told anyone, she would be deported.

Fearing the police, the mother went to a fire station and told the fire officers what was going on. The deputy was arrested yesterday.

What is occurring on the border sick. What happened to this four year old equally sick.

Tonight, my podcast show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine sharp. A quick half hour of me pontificating about anything that tickles my interest. Provocative. Eye opening. Guaranteed you will enjoy.

Join me. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

POST SUMMIT THOUGHTS

I am addicted to politics and world events. I am paying for it this morning. I remained awake most of the night watching the Singapore Summit. Trump’s press conference was 4 am.

My first thought is I should have gone to sleep. I am dead! Laid in bed till 9. Here it is after 11 and I am just beginning the blog. Still have to prepare for tonight’s podcast Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Be awake and sharp while I do the show.

What a day it’s going to be!

Talk is better than fury and fire. Trump and Kim agreed on nothing significant. The joint agreement said nothing. Denuclearization danced around.

However, the two met. They are now friends. Trump invited Kim to Washington. The world’s worst dictator has come front stage. They will engage in telephone chats. Things kumbaya. At least for a while.

Not enough for Trump to win the Nuclear Peace Prize. A meet and greet insufficient. A promise to denuclearize was required. The man who deserves the Prize is Moon Je, President of South Korea. He is the person who got the ball rolling resulting in the Summit.

One final thought. Trump was not ready. He has to prepare for these meetings. He requires a knowledgeable staff to guide him. Trump’s personality, good or bad, insufficient when it comes to the details.

So no misunderstanding exists, I consider the Summit a failure, except that now two leaders have come to know each other and will communicate.

Success may come re nuclear weapons. Down the road, however.

History tells us of a major success that began as a failure.

Reagan and Gorbachev met in Reykjavik, Iceland in 1987. They were unable to agree on anything of importance. Nothing was signed. The Summit was considered a failure.

Reagan and Gorbachev however began to talk informally. They now knew each other. Those talks paved the way to the eventual end of the Cold War and at that time the threat of nuclear war.

My KONK Life column several weeks ago was titled: I’m The President, Aren’t I?” Concerned Reagan’s speech at the Berlin Wall. In front of Brandenburg Gate.

Reagan and aides had worked on the speech for several weeks. Reagan wrote what he considered a strong line in the speech: “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” His top advisers thought the sentence too strong. Wanted it out. It came out. Reagan would put it back in. This back and forth continued.

It was the morning of the speech. Reagan in a quandary. The line out. He still wanted it in.

He had a conversation with Deputy Chief of Staff Duberstein.

Reagan: I’m the President, aren’t I?

Duberstein: Yes, sir, Mr. President. We’re clear about that.

Reagan: So I get to decide whether the line about tearing the wall                       down stays in?

Duberstein: That’s right, sir. It’s your decision.

Reagan: Then it stays in.

A dramatic moment. I recall watching Reagan on TV. “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!”

Two and a half years later, the wall came down.

Big trees from little acorns grow. The Singapore Summit could result in good. Or, not. Time will tell. One thing certain. Trump and Kim must continue to talk if good is to be accomplished.

My podcast tonight. Join me. Nine o’clock.  A quick half hour of my ramblings, sharing thoughts, etc. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

The show must be good. Or at least, interesting. My numbers keep going up. The show has acquired national advertisers.

Enjoy your day!