HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAVID WOLKOWSKY

David Wolkowsky’s 98th birthday being celebrated this evening. One of Key West finest! The Key West of today would not be were it not for him. He is properly referred to as Mr. Key West.

I will be at the party.

I have mentioned David often in this blog. Even wrote a lengthy article about him in KONK Life last year. Titled: David Wolkowsky. Read and enjoy. Learn much about the man. www.konknet.com/2016-03-04-3/.

Truman Capote died this date in 1984. David and Truman were friends. They became friends when Capote first stayed at David’s new Pier House Resort Motel.

The time 1968. David had recently completed construction of the Motel. The Motel that would grow into what is the fabulous Pier House today. Capote was a visitor. He wanted to see David’s best accommodations before he took one.

Following the selection process, David invited Capote to have a drink with him. David was living in a luxurious 45 foot 2 bedroom double wide trailer parked 10 feet from the Motel’s waterfront.

Capote told David he wanted to stay in the trailer. Capote had come to Key West for the winter. David finally acquiesced to Capote’s request. He moved into a suite in the Motel and gave Capote the trailer.

While living in the trailer, Capote wrote Answered Prayers.

A hero is like an angel. Appears when needed. Assuming you believe in angels.

A hero appeared on the Key West scene yesterday. Actually, a heroine. Jerika Rudolph. Eighteen years old.

Jerika was traveling om South Roosevelt Boulevard when she observed a Chevy Trailblazer jump the seawall and mangroves into the channel.

Jerika did not hesitate. Pulled over. Told the passenger with her to call 911. Ran across the street and jumped into the water.

She saw a man, woman and 6-7 year old child. The adults trying to break the windows. She got the woman and child out. the man was able to get out on his own.

From the time Jerika reached the car and extricated two of the passengers, the vehicle had already been carried 100 feet by the current.

Talking with authorities after the event, Jerika was asked if she was afraid. Never gave it a thought, she said. My concern was to get the people out.

The long awaited Duval Loop begins operation August 31. Part of a new Key West park and ride program. A bus will travel around the perimeter of Duval Street picking up and dropping off people who parked their cars somewhere and wanted to visit certain downtown spots. The ride always free. The aim to relieve congestion.

Hope it works. Parking and traffic impossible.

Hurricane Harvey making its way to the Corpus Christi area of Texas. A big one. Predicted to be a 3 when it hits. High water levels. Three feet of rain expected over a period of a few days.

You read correctly. Three feet of rain!

Hurricanes no fun. Believing discretion the better part of valor, I have always left when a hurricane was predicted. Returned a few days later when permitted to find damage beyond comprehension.

I stayed for a tropical storm once. Forget its name. The tropical storm was a disaster in itself. It hung over Key West without moving for seven days. I was able to get out of the house once. To my deck.

Windows boarded. Power off most of the time. No TV. Alone in the dark or with candles. Impossible to read. It made me wonder how Lincoln studied law by candle light.

The wind blowing loudly and incessantly. The rain beating against the house.

Food supply held out. Primarily peanut butter and crackers. Bottled water.

I sympathize with the Texans. The force of hurricane 3 will be a far more difficult and dangerous experience than a tropical storm.

Americans are a forgiving people. Time to forgive Pete Rose and permit him to be voted into the Hall of Fame.

Rose’s sin was he bet on baseball games. The serious sin, he bet on his own team the Cincinnati Reds while managing the team. Only to win, he said.

Rose was a star of stars in his playing days. Still holds the record for the most hits at bat during a career. Well in excess of 3,000.

Rose was banned in 1989. Twenty eight years ago. He has been humiliated and suffered enough.

The economy is good. Or, so we are told. Especially by Trump. It is. However, primarily for the already rich.

A recent Harris Poll indicates more than three-quarters of American households live paycheck to paycheck. Seventy eight percent.

Tough times. Too many Americans having a difficult time making ends meet.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

FRIENDS TODAY, ENEMIES YESTERDAY

Interesting how nations make war against each other, kill and maim by the thousands, and years later are the best of friends.

Germany and Japan examples.

Further back in history, Great Britain. We fought the Revolution and War of 1812 against the British.

During the War of 1812, the British did a terrible thing. They burned down the White House. On this date in 1814.

Most believe the burning destruction of the White House and other federal buildings was unnecessary. Normally, yes. However the circumstances were not normal. Earlier, U.S. forces had invaded Canada and burned down a number of important British buildings.

Called retribution.

Done, accompanied with an insult.

President James Madison was aware the British would successfully invade Washington. Easily. So easy that the British marched into Washington with no opposition.

Washington’s fate had been decided a day or two before. At the Battle of Bladensburg in Maryland. The U.S. was soundly defeated. Even President Madison fought on the front lines. The first and last commander in chief to actually do so as President.

Washington had to be abandoned. Dolly Madison almost did not make it. Some historians claim she insisted on waiting till a portrait of George Washington could safely be taken down and secured.

The insult did not merely consist of burning down the White House. It included top British generals dining in the White House the evening before.

Brit glory lasted only two days. On August 26, American forces attacked and the British left Washington running with their tails between their legs.

Lunch at 5 Guys yesterday. Craved a big juicy cholesterol filled cheeseburger.

Dinner with Donna in the evening. No Terri. Terri is in New Jersey visiting theater friends. She and Donna meet this weekend in Tampa. Terri begins heavy testing monday to determine if her body qualifies for total bone marrow replacement.

We dined at the bar at Antonia’s. It feels good after all these years to have returned.

TK bartending.

The three of us old timers as far as Key West is concerned. I have been visiting or owned for 26 years. TK and Donna longer. Our discussions centered on Key West. Yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

Confederate statues got into the conversation. I spoke about Mallory Square. TK the Clinton Square statue.

Someone at the bar mentioned white slavery in the U.S. Never heard of it. Partly indentured servants. Most Irish brought over in huge numbers. Etc.

Did a little researching this morning. An interesting subject. I am going to devote my live video on Facebook this afternoon to the subject.

Whites suffered. Rooted from their families, beaten, killed. Not in comparable numbers to blacks. Suffered never the less.

Hurricane Andrew hit Homestead this date in 1992. Total devastation. Homestead wiped out.

I drove through Homestead three weeks later on my way to Key West. The elevated highway still standing. What I saw I would not have believed had I not seen it with my own eyes.

Andrew was a 5. Wiped everything out! Down to the ground! Only an occasional wall left standing.

Tears ran down my cheeks.

Tropical storm Harvey is moving towards Texas. Expected to hit land early saturday morning. Some concern. It is expected to hit as a hurricane. Possibly as high as a 3.

Key West has been buried in rain the past two days. More expected through a week from tomorrow. Could be a spill off from Harvey.

We have read frequently that the Trump’s are bankrupting the Secret Service. An agent’s salary is capped. There are 130 agents protecting the Trump family. Many agents have already exceeded the cap. They are not being paid for heavy overtime. Cannot be without House approval.

What I share, you already know. What you may not know is that many agents are complaining that Trump and family are not treating the agents properly. The agents claim they are being treated like servants.

Bocce season begins tonight. I doubt there will be play. The courts are already soaked. There will be more rain today.

Don will call to advise if the team is playing.

Have to hustle. Haircut time.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

HOGFISH SHORTAGE AROUND THE CORNER

Hogfish have been overfished!

Fishing bans go into effect September 1. Limited harvest in Key West waters. Commercial fishing banned till January 1. Recreational banned in federal waters till May 1.

Local fishermen knew the ban was coming. Will affect their incomes.

Hogfish the most popular fish for eating in the Keys. Bobby Mongelli’s restaurant on Stock Island named Hogfish. I only eat hogfish when I am there.

Mongelli said he has been aware, has made efforts to obtain hogfish from other sources. Expects to run out of hogfish on occasion never the less. Prices will go up a bit. He will be paying more for the hogfish from other areas.

My podcast Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou last night. Covered a range of topics. Only half the show dedicated to Trump. Fifty percent too much. However, he is the news these days everyday.

Fortunately, Trump’s rally was scheduled for 10 pm my time. Got to watch all of him!

Typical campaign rhetoric. The man is not stable. I worry even more after watching him last night. He scares me and should scare you. The man who has his finger on the nuclear weapon button.

Interestingly, the Phoenix rally was the first of Trump’s 2020 Campaign. A bit early? Why? Money? Does he pay or a PAC?

The wall. I am sick of the wall. It will never be. Neither practical nor cheap. The House will never approve the spending. If the House does, it will only be a token of what is required.

Trump threatened last night to close down the government if he does not get the wall in the new budget. The wall is another Trump campaign promise that will go unfulfilled.

Key West bars come and go. Some come and never leave.

Lazy Gecko sat next door to Sloppy Joe’s for 17 years. Did a good business. Until recently when someone new bought the building. A rent hike Lazy Gecko could not afford.

Gecko out. New owner coming in. Building gutted and under renovation at the moment. Opening anticipated early in October. Bar/restaurant will be called Duval Central. Inside, Island City Stage. Top musical performers will be brought in to entertain.The desire is to turn the place into a great music venue.

I find the desire strange. The whole island is a great music venue.

Why was the Christopher Columbus statue in Baltimore sledge hammered to the ground a couple of nights ago? The statue was erected way back in 1792.

Turns out Columbus was a slaver.

He made three trips to the New World. Became involved in the slave trade on the second and third trips.

The second trip he captured and brought 1,600 West Indian natives to Spain. Many died on route. Queen Isabella kept a number to row her galleys. Some were returned.

Good bye the Columbus Day Parade in New York City.

A confusing topic. Complicated. How far back do we go in failing to honor for other deeds those associated with slavery?

Forget not George Washington. A big time slave owner. The slaves took care of Mount Vernon, helped run Washington’s whiskey distilleries. Rename Washington, D.C.? Remove Washington’s picture from the dollar bill?

There is a saving feature in Washington’s case. He ordered in his Will that all his slaves receive their freedom.

Johnson and Johnson. Many baby back ends covered with its baby powder at diaper change time.

Some women apparently have used Johnson’s baby powder their entire lives as part of feminine hygiene. Powdered their bodies including the genital area with the talcum powder following bathing.

It took a while. However, there is now the possibility the baby powder is a carcinogenic. May be causing ovarian cancer in women who have used the powder for a number of years.

Monday, a 63 year old California woman received a $417 million dollar judgment based on the scenario described.

Not the first case to come to trial. Four others. Three resulted in multi-million dollar verdicts. One thrown out by the court.

Not the type of lawsuit the public should turn its nose up to. Over 400,000 similar cases pending.

A calamity yesterday. My water was turned off for nonpayment of the bill. $28. I was without water most of the day.

In defense, I never got the bill. It went to my old address. Never got to me, even though I placed a change of address order with the Post Office back in June.

I paid the $28 bill by phone at 1. Plus a $60 turn off/turn on fine. Asked if I would be turned on before 4. Was assured even sooner.

Came 6 and I still had no water. In spite of having made several calls advising water not yet turned on. Assured man was in the area and I was next on list or he would be there shortly.

I don’t think anyone was directed to turn the water back on.

I only received proper attention just before 6. The water board was closed. A fellow named Patrick was handling the emergency desk. He had no record of me. However, he said he would have it taken care of right away. He did. Within a half hour, I had water.

My account is now on automatic pay.

Enjoy your day!

TEAR DOWN THE WALL

Two events have occurred in my lifetime which I consider momentous. Man on the moon and the Berlin Wall coming down. No other event excels.

Man walking on the moon blew my mind. A real WOW! Inconceivable.

The Berlin Wall went up in 1969. Communist Russia and the United states were at each other’s throats for years. Fear of war overwhelmed us.

On this day in 1987, President Ronald Reagan stood before the Berlin wall and said to Secretary Gorbachev, “Take down this wall!”

Reagan had brass balls.

The Wall came down two years later. The Berlin people themselves knocked it down. Brick by brick, stone by stone.

Absolutely amazing!

The Soviet Union would dissolve two years later. Who would have thought?

Pride and Women’s Equality Parades yesterday. Both successful events. Crowds on the sidewalk cheering. Pride floats magnificent. Everyone happy!

One hundred feet of the Rainbow Flag was carried the length of the Parade.

The group on one of the floats kept repeating : Love, not hate, that’s what makes America great. A fitting slogan. A better variation on anything Trump has said thus far.

Today in Bayview Park, 49 Rainbow Flags are flying to commemorate the 49 lives lost one year ago today at Orlando’s Pulse Club.  In addition, a one hundred foot section of the Rainbow Flag flies in Orlando today.

Love one another!

William Hackley’s diary entry of yesterday in 1856 noted that his daughter Lucia had the chicken pox.

I recall the chicken pox when I had them at 3 or 4 years of age. My father dabbing me with calamine lotion to ease the itching.

Then came my four children. All close in age. We had 4 in 5 years.

They all came down with chicken pox the same summer. Not all at once, however. One every two weeks. A long summer!

I did as my father. Dabbed the sores with calamine lotion.

Qatar a problem place. For a short time, I hope. Muscle flexing by Saudi Arabia and a few other Arab states.

Qatar is small. Very small. Very rich. It has huge supplies of natural gas. Qatar and Iran have shared the benefits of the natural gas together for years.

Qatar has hired former Attorney General John Ashcroft and his law firm to represent Qatar in its problems with Saudi Arabia and others. Ashcroft was Attorney General under Bush 2.

The pay is good. A retainer of $2.5 million. For only the first 90 days of work.

Terri sings tonight with the Dueling Bartenders at Aqua.

Enjoy your day!