This week’s KONK Life column Black Panthers Return was posted yesterday on Key West Lou. keywestlou.com.

Race week is here! An annual event. Proper name Quantum Key West 2015. The races begin today and will continue for the week. Each day 10-3.

The boats are large sail boats. Sixty, seventy foot and more. The kind that take teams of upwards 18 persons to operate. There are 115 boats in 10 classes participating. Several of the persons sailing are members of the National Sailing Hall of Fame.

The best way to describe the races are that they are like the America Cup. The races a rich man’s sport.

My walk yesterday took me down Conch Republic way. Many sailboats were sitting in front of the Conch Republic and along the Galleon.

There was a Half Marathon yesterday. The race started at sunrise. Too early for me to be up and watching. Some 3,000 participated. I am aware of the race because Lori who does my hair runs in it. She is a dedicated runner. The reason why she is so thin.

I caught a part of the Seattle/Green Bay game in the afternoon. Most of the last half and the overtime. Great football! How to come from behind!

Seattle meets the New England Patriots in Super Bowl. A big deal. I attended 11 consecutive Super Bowls before buying my Key West home. I became too comfortable afterwards to leave Key West.

I can distinctly remember Super Bowl I. It was not called such in 1967. The name was AFL-NFL World Championship Game. The fact that the two leagues met was a first. The NFL considered the AFL upstart and inferior and did not enter into a playoff till that time. The AFL acquired credibility in the game Joe Namath played a few years later.

Key West suffered two power outages in  the afternoon. No electricity for about an hour.

The Republicans have announced Carlos Curbelo will make the Republican Spanish language response to the President’s State of the Union address tomorrow night. Curbelo is Key West’s Congressman. He has had an honor bestowed upon him.

I did not vote for Curbelo. He ran in November for the first time. I did not like what he stood for. His speeches were hard to the right. The man sounded as if he had no sympathy. I expect the same from him tomorrow night.

Today in Keys History mentioned two Hollywood films. The Rose Tattoo and Operation Petticoat. Both were filmed in Key West.

The Rose Tatoo premiered at the Strand and San Carlos Theaters. The Strand today houses a Walgreens. The San Carlos is no longer a movie house. It is an historical site. Life theater is often presented.

The movies brought major Hollywood stars to Key West. Burt Lancaster, Cary Grant and Tony Curtis. The Rose Tattoo house still stands. It is on Duncan, two block’s from Lisa’s home.

Today my odd ball stress test. I am positive it is scheduled for this afternoon.

Enjoy your day!


History repeats itself.
The Black Panther movement began in 1966 and had basically run its course by 1982. Small straggler groups of no significance remained.
Tough blacks! They challenged police brutality. For them, the revolution had come. Police were “pigs.” The Black Panthers were militants who believed in social revolution. They  burned and blew up buildings, shot and killed police officers. Vietnam was in full swing. They opposed the draft and de facto segregation.
In the end, some were killed, others went to jail, and a number have escaped capture and prosecution to this day. Interestingly, some became prominent political figures and were elected to public office.
Ferguson several months ago reactivated the movement. In Dallas, Texas. They call themselves the New Black Panthers.
Five insignificant groups existed in Dallas till the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson. The five came together and formed the Huey P. Newton Gun Club. Huey Newton was a leading Black Panther back when. Later when Staten Island’s
Eric Garner was killed, they added his death to their list of reasons why they exist.
The Dallas Black Panthers are shades of the 1960s organization.  They label police as “pigs.” and claim police brutalize black people.
The Black Panthers assert two reasons for their formation. They were formed for purpose of self-defense. The self-defense of blacks. A second reason is they support gun rights. Surprisingly, Texas is one of six States that does not have an open carry gun law. They support such a law. In so doing, they refer to themselves as the Black NRA.
The Dallas group consists of former Army Rangers and private citizens. They wear military apparel and carry assault rifles.
Violence begets violence. People can only be defecated on so long before they react. The Dallas Black Panthers are as Texans of old: Don’t Tread On Me!
The contingency refer constantly to the fact that in the past 12 years in Dallas, over 70 unarmed individuals have been shot and killed by police. Most of them black and Hispanic. They further are quick to point out that the Grand Jury process does not work. There have been no indictments in Dallas since 1973 of any police officer who killed any one.
They are serious-minded. They patrol Dallas streets. Their training significant. Knives play a big part. From their perspective, a knife changes the whole game. They train their “troops” to perform slash and stab maneuvers.
The group publicly marches singing…..”No longer will we let the pigs slaughter our brothers and sisters and not say a damn thing about it.” Also…..”I used to salute the f–king flag! Now I use it for a rag!” “Black power” is another chant.
They compare themselves to the American Revolution’s Minute Men.
The Dallas Black Panthers are not a rag tail group. They are well-funded. Donations come in from all over the country. Some think the Koch Brothers support them. They are not considered a liberal group. They are believed to be to the far right.
They are considered a hate group. Denounced as such by the Anti-Defamation League, The Southern Poverty Law Center and Bobby Seale. Bobby Seale co-founded the original Black Panthers with Huey Newton in 1966.
It is expected the movement will grow and spread.
Assumed police power is the reason we are at this point. Police abuse in every form must be stopped. Attempts are being made. None enough. We are not even to first base yet in addressing the problem.


Not much to share today. Yesterday was a do nothing day overall. A couch potato most of the day.

It was a good day! There is a need to rest body, mind and soul on occasion.

I watched the Syracuse/Georgia Tech game in the evening. Had planned to watch at Don’s Place. All of a sudden getting ready seemed like too much work. I stayed home.

Syracuse won by one point. 46-45. Not a pretty win, not an impressive game.

Syracuse did play well. The problem was they could not get the ball to go in the basket. Too many shots missed. Several lay ups.

Gamblers know what they are doing. The Vegas line was Syracuse by 1.5 points. Syracuse won by one point. Amazing how they can call most games!

I did work a few hours in the afternoon researching next week’s KONK Life column. A very interesting topic. Involves a new Black Panther group in Dallas. Ferguson motivated the rebirth of the organization.

The north is freezing in sub zero chill factor weather. When  extremely cold up north, it is cold in the south. Key West went down to 62 in the evening. I don’t fool around. Grabbed a blanket and turned on the heat.

Such was my nothing day.

Enjoy your today!


Wowie! Cold in the north today. Chill factors as low as -49. Upstate New York projected at -20. With one foot of snow!

My friends up north laugh when I do this. But…..it is going to be cold tonight in Key West. -62. That means a blanket or heat.

All in all, crazy weather. Global warming?

After living alone so long, I have become domesticated to a degree. Was in Publix yesterday. Saw eggplants. A sudden desire overwhelmed me! I bought one. Cooked it for dinner last night.

Cut the plant in half. Thin sliced the half I was going to use. Heated some olive oil in a large frying pan. Then the slices. Cooked them to a light brown on each side.

Delicious! Just like my mother used to make.

I observed something interesting in the process. The eggplant slices absorbed the oil rapidly. Gulped it right up. Like a paper towel soaking up a spill.

Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou last night. One of my better shows. Spent more than a half the show discussing issues involving policemen.

As part of the police portion, I made reference to the new Black Panther group formed in Dallas. Shades of the ’60s. Blacks, many of whom are retired Army Rangers, have formed a paramilitary group to protect blacks from being killed by police. A confrontation/eruption is sure to follow at some point. Violence begets violence.

Nudity continues to be an issue in Key West. As regards Fantasy Fest. A do good group has their nose in the issue.

There is a special meeting of the City Commission tonight to review matters. Harry Bethel, a leader in the anti-nudity movement, says the Commission will discuss curbing nudity during Fantasy Fest. Bethel announced earlier that in all his years of living in Key West, he has never attended a Fantasy Fest. A blind man shall lead them!

Numbers sometime tell an interesting story. It has been reported that in Alabama, food stamp recipients outnumber public school students by 20 percent. Yet we keep hearing how the economy has recovered. Not for those on food stamps!

Enjoy your day!