ANOTHER PRITAM SINGH SUCCESS

Till recently, Stock Island has been the key most forgotten. Step-sister to Key West.

In recent months, construction of two new hotels has been completed. Two more in the planning stage. A Stock Island boom in the making!

One of the hotels is the Ocean Edge Hotel and Marina. At the end of MacDonald Ave.

I have visited Ocean Edge several times. Lunch one time. Drinks another. The others to sit in a contemplative mood viewing the ocean.

As  mentioned in an earlier blog, Ocean Edge is magnificent! A different hotel. A new taste. I described it as a winner in the making.

One of Key West’s premier builders Pritam Singh created the concept, did the construction and operated the facility.

Till a few days ago.

It was announced Singh had sold Ocean Edge to Sunset Hotel Investors for $175 million. God bless America! In addition, he still has a hand in its operation. Singh Hospitality will continue operating Ocean Edge.

Ran a few errands yesterday.

My evening began with the Chart Room at 6:30. John said I was his first customer. A slow start to the evening. The place eventually started filling up.

Then to Don’s Place. Enjoyed a drink with Stan and Claire.

Claire is having less than a good year. She already has had a major surgery. Followed by an infection. Another surgery awaits. Had to be cancelled.

Claire was sitting at the bar with her left arm from wrist to elbow heavily bandaged. A hot cup of tea was spilled on her at work. Third degree burns.

The operation will follow when the arm heals.

David came in. Good to see him. It had been a while.

My dinner was a late one. At Tavern ‘n Town. Their 9-11 Happy Hour. Tapas $7 and drinks 2 for 1. I enjoyed wings, 2 gins and a cup of coffee. The manager picked up the drinks. I paid for the wings, coffee and tax. $11.83. Could I go wrong!

The Sheriff’s Department and U.S. Coast Guard have been dealing with the derelict abandoned vessel problem of late. Concededly, a danger to navigation. On occasion, a life saver.

Yesterday, a diver was reported missing off Bahia Honda. The Sheriff’s Department and Coast Guard were notified. Within 20 minutes, the diver was found 5 miles off shore sitting on an abandoned derelict boat.

Everyone loves Mark Watson! Singer, drag queen bartender, former Fantasy Fest King, etc. Mark frequently comments on Facebook. Yesterday, he came up with a gem: “…..a Republican President has a Republican controlled Congress, and the only thing he’s managed to pass in 6 months is gas.”

John Kelly is Trump’s new Chief of Staff. A retired Marine General, he is known to be a disciplinarian. It has been said he “…..won’t suffer idiots and fools.”

I hope so. Beginning with the President.

The 2020 Presidential race has begun.

John Delaney is a three term Maryland Congressman. He announced yesterday he is a candidate for the Democratic nomination. He said he is starting early because no one knows him.

Delaney a self made millionaire. Claims he will throw some of his money into the campaign. Sound familiar?

Farmers Market. I love Farmers Market! Generally buy bread, tomatoes and honey. The Market has been running saturdays during the summer. Thursdays the rest of the year. At Bayview Park.

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!

 

 

KEY WEST’S VIETNAM LIVING MEMORIAL

I attended the Vietnam Living Memorial event at Bayview Park yesterday.

I especially feel an attachment to the veterans of the Vietnam War. I did not serve. However, those who did are close in age to me. Probably why I feel a kindership.

It took a long time for our country to honor the Vietnam vets. They are a sight to behold at any ceremony involving them. Pride. Their faces reflect it.

Picked up Terri at 5. She was to sing as part of Dueling Bartenders at Aqua. Donna working. I played chauffeur.

Dropped Terri off. Did not go in. Instead drove down to the Chart Room.

Met the new bartender Shaun. He was a manager at Rum Barrel. Rum Barrel closed a couple of weeks ago.

A young couple came in. Both worked at Casa Marina. I sipped and listened to their conversation with Shaun. One of them was a bartender at Casa Marina. Bartending the primary topic of their conversation.

Returned to Aqua.

Tom Luna and Terri singing up a storm.Terri starred tree months on Broadway playing the jail matron Mama Morton in Chicago. She sang All That Jazz last night. Wild!

Some of the nicest people live in Key West. Try us and you will understand. Many at Dueling Bartenders are locals. Comradeship exists.

My Facebook video is three months old. Seems I did the right thing. Many people watching. As to locals, four came up to me to comment on the video show, how much they liked it, etc.

Made me feel good.

I am losing friends frequently. Persons who were close to me. Most recently, a judge and police lieutenant. Contemporaries.

Death abounds. A certainty. I do not think about it. The thought would diminish the fun I am having.

Watched Trump lay a wreath at Arlington Cemetery on TV yesterday. His words warm. He was Presidential.

What bothered me was the roaring welcome he received. Had to be a selected crowd. The enthusiasm for him overwhelming.

A little Lincoln Memorial and Jefferson Memorial.

On this day in 1922, former President William Howard Taft dedicated the Lincoln Memorial. Construction began in 1914 and was completed in 1922. The Memorial impressive.

The Jefferson Memorial was completed in a shorter time. Construction began in 1939 and was completed in 1947. Bronzed in 1947. Equally impressive.

I have always favored the Jefferson Memorial. A tall standing Jefferson. If I recall correctly, 18 feet. Majestic.

William Hackley’s diary interesting this morning. Today’s date in 1856. Hackley noted a man was convicted of larceny. He was sentenced to one hour in a pillory. To expose him to public abuse.

I was surprised the pillory was still in use in 1856. I thought it had disappeared as a punishment instrument years earlier.

Every now and then someone makes a statement in Citizens’ Voice that has no basis in fact. Some ill informed individual wrote that Key West needs to “charge more for the scads of underpriced free parking we have in Old Town.”

The writer knows nothing of that which was written.

Private parking is expensive. Public parking, generally more so.

Municipal lots charge from $3 to $4 an hour. Multiply the numbers by 3-4 or more hours. The dollars add up.

As to free parking, none exists.

It costs me roughly $100 a week to park. I live three islands up, 5 miles from downtown Key West. I drive in at least 5 mornings a week. Three to 4 evenings, also. Morning parking generally 4 hours. Evenings, 4-6.

Do the math. The lots where I park generally in the $4 range. The closer to the action, the more the City charges.

I mentioned an only in Key West occurrence yesterday. Two women fighting because one had failed to give the other an orgasm.

Today, a similar happening reported.

The man was using the men’s room at Bayview Park. Upon leaving, he ran into a former girl friend. She started shouting and grabbed him by the balls. Squeezing hard. He claimed he “experienced immediate pain and discomfort.”

The police were called.

She must have thought she was Donald Trump…..Once you grab them by the crotch, you’ve got them.

My podcast show tonight at 9. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. So many happenings this week, I have a wide range of topics to choose from.

Join me at 9. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

DON AND CHRIS ENGAGED

Finally, Don and Chris are engaged. It only took 11 years for Don to bend a knee and ask…..Will you marry me? With a 2.5 carat engagement ring in hand.

Chris burst out crying and exclaimed…..Yes!

Chris should not have been so quick to accept. I would have made Don sweat a while for making Chris wait 11 years.

The couple happy. The wedding next year in Key West.

I met Don and Chris several years ago at the Chart Room. They visit Key West 3-4 times a year. Don is part owner of a South Korea company. He spends the better part of the year in South Korea. Chris travels for her employer. Marketing. Most recently in Germany.

Home is Syracuse.

Larry and Peggy…..I am proud of your son for finally doing the right thing. Chris is a wonderful person. Devoted to your Don. Don equally wonderful and devoted to Chris.

The perfect couple.

Don and Chris joined me at Aqua last night. Tom Luna and Heather Mae performing.

We parted company after Aqua. Don wanted to watch a football game. I wanted to go to bed. Stopped at Roostica on the way home for lemoncello wings.

Big night for the kids! Christmas tree lighting and Santa Claus at Bayview Park last night. Santa arrived on a fire truck, horn blaring all the way.

My podcast show this evening. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

A different show tonight. My plan is to discuss one topic. A topic which the media fails to give proper attention. Actions taking place which bring shame to our Nation.

Standing Rock, North Dakota. Native Americans, a pipeline, and excessive police activity.

An interesting, fast moving, informative show. Again, join me.

Syracuse/Wisconsin tonight in basketball. Wisconsin a 6 point favorite.

My show interferes with watching. Game at 7. I will get in the first half and probably last 5 minutes. It will be the first time this season I will see Syracuse play.

Installment 25 of my rendition of the Key West Rotary history by Wright Langley. Today, years 1986-88.

Tomorrow, the final installment. Will center around Key West Rotary’s 75th anniversary.

Rotary’s budget in its infant years beginning in 1915 had to be a pittance. Not that way by the time 1986 came around. The projected income budget for the year was $68,415.

Rotary’s 1988 Annual Report noted the Club had 100 members.

Major accomplishments for the year included raising funds for Polio Plus, sponsoring Key West’s only Fourth of July fireworks (a tradition which began in 1979), sponsoring the Sunrise Rotary Club, continued the annual $4,000 scholarship, and established the Key West Rotary Foundation.

Tomorrow, Rotary’s 75th anniversary.

Enjoy your day!

A SPORTS AFTERNOON

An interesting sports afternoon! I did not view much of it. The results astounding.

First, Syracuse.

Football. Syracuse lost as anticipated. Finally the football season is over. The score of the game unusual. Syracuse beaten by Pitt 76-61. The numbers reflect a basketball score. I am pleased that Syracuse kept it close. Only lost by roughly two touchdowns.

Basketball. Here I thought success would be ours. It was not. Syracuse lost to South Carolina 64-50.

No excuse. However…..Seems South Carolina’s defense was unique. New to college basketball. Syracuse could not handle it.

Boeheim will overcome.

Finally, the Ohio State/Michigan game. #s 2 and 3. Went to two overtimes. Ohio State finally won 30-27.

I only got to watch the overtimes. Fantastic football!

Last night with Liz. A lady. Charming. Her two deanships at law schools make Liz an extra interesting dinner companion.

I picked Cafe. The vegetarian restaurant. A funky appearing place. Reminds me of a college hang out. Food excellent. Business, likewise excellent.

I enjoyed a spinach-artichoke dip and mussels. Liz had some type veggie dish described as a pepper steak. No steak, of course.

Pie at Liz’s home afterwards. Potato pie made with rum. Never had potato pie before. Taste close to pumpkin pie. Made from canned sweet potatoes.

Fidel Castro has died.

A tyrant. Dictator. People forget that he replaced a despot. Batista. Initially, Castro was viewed as a hero.

Somewhere along the way, he ended up on Russia’s side. I have always wondered why not on the side of the U.S.

Batista was a whore. He and his associates became rich. Organized crime and international corporations paved their way in Cuba with bribery dollars.

Key West, the State of Florida and the U.S. have constantly guarded against Castro actions and influences as they might affect each.

An Emergency Management organization exists. Its primary purpose to guard against any large scale immigration. Also to observe any unusual happenings.

Monroe County’s Emergency Management has kicked in. As has Florida’s. Monitoring Cuban activities.

Santa Claus is coming to town! Monday evening at 6. Bayview Park. Key West’s Christmas tree lighting. Santa’s first public appearance.

This morning’s KONK Life E-Blast has an elderly health article. The article notes that 1/3 of people over 65 fall. I am one of them!

Pope Urban II is responsible to some degree for today’s Muslim problem. On this day in 1095, he ordered the first Crusade. His speech considered the most influential of the Middle Ages.

He cried out “Deus vult!” God wills it! He even told everyone that those fighting would have a remission of all their sins. Such meant immediate entrance into Heaven. No Hell or Purgatory. Sounds sort of like the Muslim 17 or 21 or whatever number of virgins who will be waiting for those who die for the Muslim religion.

Pope Urban’s Crusade was the first movement against the Muslim world. For 461 years, the Muslims had battled and seized 2/3’s of the Christian world. Pope Urban wanted the Christian lands reclaimed.

Whatever the reason, a forever war.

The history of the Key West Rotary continues. This is Installment 23.

I have noticed that beginning with World War II, the history contents of Langley’s work have become sparse. Five years missed here and there. Cannot be nothing occurred. Whatever, this feature of my blog will see its conclusion by the end of the week.

When I started, I advised Langley’s history went to 1975. I recently discovered there was later a sort of addendum bringing it up to 1991.

April 1966 was the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Key West Rotary. The Club’s golden anniversary. It was celebrated in a befitting manner.

A gala cocktail party and dinner at the Trade Winds Supper Room in the Holiday Inn. The Holiday Inn was Key West’s largest hotel/motel for years. It was torn down and replaced with what today is the Marriott Beachside.

One hundred Rotarians and guests attended. Guest speaker was Cleve Allen of Coral Gables. His thunder was stolen by Joe Pearlman, one of the Club’s pioneer members. He told stories about yesterday. Back when.

Interestingly, when the Key West Rotary was established 50 years earlier, it was only the third in Florida.

The 1960s found the U.S. heavily involved in Vietnam. The war was very unpopular. Returning soldiers and veterans were not acclaimed. Actually looked down upon.

The Key West Rotary recognized Vietnam veterans were being overlooked. At the January 26, 1967 luncheon meeting, 4 U.S. Marines were invited. They were recuperating from their wounds at the time at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Key West.

Enjoy your Sunday!

ONE SIZE FITS ALL

Some heavy dialogue the past couple of months with the election coming up. Time for a change of pace.

Got a haircut yesterday. While waiting for Lori, I picked up a magazine. A Thanksgiving Cook Book. A few female advertisements.

ONE SIZE FITS ALL!

A bra. 32A – 36D.

Why not. We have one size hats and socks.

My sensitivities may be misplaced. I thought it funny.

Key West activities sometimes are off the beaten track. Two examples.

The dachshund is the official Key West dog. Key West goes to the dogs at noon New Years Eve. For the past 13 years. This year the 13th Annual Key West Dachshund Parade.

Only three blocks. Tummies a problem.

The other event is tomorrow from 11 in the morning till 2 in the afternoon. The Men In Paradise Fashion Show. Brooks Brothers it is not.

A fun event. Marriott Beachside. A fundraiser for Samuel’s House

Today is Veterans Day. Taking into account all the wars in my lifetime, the recognition is well deserved.

Key West will be celebrating the day as all other communities in our country. The parade at 4. Duval, of course.

The other recognition activity takes place  earlier at 11 in Bayview Park. At the Memorial Garden. Guaranteed, there will be several hundred veterans. Proud.

Key West is a very patriotic community.

This morning’s Key West Citizen reports there have been 8 Zika cases in Monroe County. Three of the women pregnant. No births yet. All travel infected.

Key West Rotary history. Installment 10.

The time 1931. The Overseas Highway had opened a few years earlier. Many took the train to get to Key West, however. The train operated by the Florida East Coast Railway.

If one wanted to get from Key West to Cuba, a ferry. One, the Florida.

The Cuba Rotary District Governor was Luis Machado. He and his wife had been visiting the northeast United States. They were on the way home.

 

The Governor had a short stop in Key West between the train and ferry. He was guests of local Rotarians Robert Spottswood, W. L. Bates, and J. Lancelot Lester. Cuban Counsel Jorge Ponce joined them.

Earlier in August, there was a band concert at Bayview Park. A Florida Army National Guard band played. Six thousand residents and visitors attended.

A few days later on August 12, officers and enlisted men of the Florida National Guard were entertained at a dance. The event was held at the Coral Isle Casino at the foot of Duval Street. Four hundred danced from 9 pm to 12:45 am. Lovely, vivacious, young Key West ladies contributed to the evening’s success.

The event was chaired by Rotarians W. L. Bates, Sebastian Cabrera, and B. Curry.

Recall that the Rotary began in 1905. Key West formed a club in 1915. Rotary had grown dramatically world wide in a short period of time.

Nineteen thirty one found Rotary with its first European as International President. England’s Sydney Paschall.

Rotary’s impact locally and internationally was reflected by the Key West Citizen’s front page headline re Paschall’s pending visit: KEY WEST TO SEE FIRST EUROPEAN AS HEAD OF ROTARIES.

Paschall was to arrive November 30. A committee of Rotarians was selected to prepare for Paschall’s visit.

Enjoy your day!

 

LOST ITS SOUL TO GREED

This morning’s Citizens’ Voice in the Key West Citizen carried an interesting comment: “The island has lost its soul to greed.”

Food for thought!

Spent time yesterday working on installment 3 of highlights from Wright Langley’s Key West Rotary History. The installment can be read further down.

Did some research for tonight’s podcast. Not enough. I have another 3-4 hours before the show itself. I have a medical test at 11:30. Will complete the research thereafter.

The lead topic will involve Comey’s letter to certain Congressional Committees.

The show is at 9 my time. A quick interesting half hour. Whether you agree with my comments, guaranteed you will enjoy. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Visited Terri at the hospital. She is looking good. Returns home today. Donna has been the perfect spouse. Slept on a couch in Terri’s room the whole week.

Following the visit, headed to Aqua for Dueling Bartenders. Special last night. Tracey from days gone by belting out one song after another. Tracey is a for real woman who looks like a woman. Tom Luna and Goddess Galore singing along with Tracey.

A good crowd. Liz there. Sat with her.

Last night, Halloween. Key Haven always crowded with costumed kids. Key Haven is the best place for trick or treat goodies. Plentiful. The residents place tables on the lawn spread with candy, apples, etc. They sit around the tables greeting the ghosts and goblins.

Historically, a big deal! Going to Key Haven on Halloween. Costumed children are driven on the back of pick up trucks to get there. Key West children travel to Key Haven for the evening.

Not last night.

I drove home at 7:30. Very few young ones. Fifty at the most. Normally in the hundreds. Where were they? I have no idea.

Bayview reopened yesterday. New equipment for the kids. Paid for by the City.

Construction of Bayview began in 1922. The Key West Rotary was a big help in getting the park started. There is more in today’s installment re Rotary’s contribution.

A comedy opens tonight at the Red Barn. The Return. Runs 11/1 to 11/19. A line in the play suggests the comedic effect: “No need for brutality. Just call me Jesus.”

The Key West City Commission continues to have their heads up their derrieres. This time re the location of the tiger at the new City Hall. We have a multitude of problems that need addressing. The tiger should have been an easy one.

The issue is which corner should the tiger be set on. It was always on the corner of White and United. Some Commission members and others believe the corner of White and Varsela would now be better.

Time being spent deciding the location.

Would you believe!

Hackley on another hunting trip. Another overnighter. Must be the time of the year for getting game.

He and his companions killed 23 Coots and 3 ducks.

Now for today’s highlights of Key West Rotary’s history. Installment 3 covers the years 1919-1923.

Nineteen nineteen and 1920 apparently not significant. No mention in Langley’s history.

An issue arose in early December 1921 that would be a call to war today. The Rotary decided to perform a minstrel show.

Minstrel shows were common back then. Social correctness not even a spoken term. Men painted their faces black and performed. Comedy and singing. The shows fundraisers.

Put yourself back in the time. Our country was German, Welsh, English based. Everyone else considered immigrants. African-Americans and other persons of color not taken into account.

The Rotary was presenting the minstrel show to raise monies for Boy Scout Troop 2.

Rotary President at the time was Dr. J. Y. Porter, Sr. He was Florida’s first public health officer. Porter raised hell. Called “raised the mischief” in  those days. He was “angered.” Claimed he was not informed of the minstrel show. He needed to first see it to make sure no part required censorship.

He saw it. Gave his approval.

It was thought Porter’s cries were a ruse. To give attention to the minstrel show and assure a larger attendance.

The minstrel show opened on schedule on December 10 at the Garden Theater.

I researched the Garden Theater to add some background. I found nothing.

The day after the show, the newspaper reported the show was enjoyed by all. Even “Boss Rote.” I researched Boss Rote and came up with nothing. I suspect it was a nick name for Dr. Porter.

Rotarians have always supported the Boy Scouts. In 1937, the Key West Rotary organized and sponsored Boy Scout Troop 50.

Nineteen twenty two was a busy year. One of the Rotary’s first major projects was to clear the area that was to become Bayview Park. Rotarians spent two days in overalls and blue chambray shirts chopping down heavy underground growth and grass.

Walter S. Crosley was a Rotarian. He also was A U.S. Navy Captain. He rounded up a detachment of Bluejackets and Marines to assist the Rotarians.

The Key West Electric Company participated. Its President was Rotarian Bascom Grooms. He contributed 30 employees to help.

Two days later at the end of the work, the Rotarians posed for a photo in front of Rotarian Benjamin D. Trevor’s home. Trevor’s house was across the street from the future Bayview Park on Division Street. Division Street today Truman Avenue.

Two of Trevor’s sons went on to become Presidents of the Key West Rotary. Jerry and Edwin Trevor.

I suspect the Rotarians of those days either were younger or had a number of young members. In 1923, the Rotary had a softball team. Members only.

The Rotary played a game against Army and Navy officers.  The softball diamond was the Old Army Barracks. Now, Peary Court.

Rotary won 19-10.

Enjoy your day!