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!

FANTASY FEST NUDITY

BOB’s observations, thoughts and opinions re Fantasy Fest nudity.

Every year at Fantasy Fest time, a group of religious and/or concerned citizens form a Christian Coalition or some other group to  protest what they perceive as a sinful event.

Nudity the primary concern. Personal parts being exhibited. At the time Bob Smith wrote BOB in the mid 1990’s, body painting to cover breasts and genitals had become popular. Total nudity was illegal. Flamingos, palm trees, and flowers became works of art. A woman’s breast the canvas.

Kiosks appeared on Duval. Body painting took place in public. Everyone could view the woman’s nude breasts being covered.

The religious/civic groups were opposed to the public display of breasts during their painting. The issue was resolved. A compromise. Body painting prohibited in public places. Body painting went indoors. Various Duval Street businesses made room for the art work to be done. Everyone made money off the paintings.

BOB considered the resolution folly. The whole issue stupid. Two interesting BOB quotes.

Bob Smith told BOB, “Man cannot live without whim alone.” BOB wrote, “I am appalled…..how we have gotten into this mess.”

Bob Smith said, “Now is the time for all good men to come and get laid in the country.”

Let me bring you up to date on the nudity situation.

Given a person an inch and he/she will take a foot. So it went.

Body painting developed. A woman’s whole body. From the hairline on her head to her toes. No clothing, no pasties. Body all one color. Breasts/nipples painted over. Even a woman’s privates. The time had not yet arrived when women were shaving their pubic hair. The painter merely painted over the pubic hair. The ladies so “covered” walked around.

The religious coalition got back into the act. Full body painting not proper. Nipples and genitalia still could be seen.

Several years of negotiating and the resolution was to cover the nipples with pasties and the female genitalia and buttocks with fully opaque clothing. A bikini bottom would suffice.

Full body painting died out. Why go through all the trouble if a pair of pasties and a small bottom resolved the situation.

The thong came into vogue. The bikini bottom gave way to the thong. A woman’s buttocks in clear view. Not legal, though remains overlooked at the present time.

Some women continue to merely have their breasts and/or chests painted with a tropical bird, etc. The art work lovely. Lasts about 5 days. Women can shower without fear of it washing off.

Give me an inch and I’ll take a foot continued to prevail, however. A few years ago, swingers discovered Fantasy Fest. They came to town and changed the adult flavor of Fantasy Fest. Advanced it to their level of adult fun. Glaring nudity. Occasions of public sex.

Interestingly, at this point the community came together in opposition to the swinger modifications to the event. Those who previously disagreed with the religious coalitions, now agreed. It was a step too far. The swinger aspect lasted only one Fantasy Fest. Everything back to normal thereafter. Whatever that may be.

Male genitalia exposure a problem. Few men do it. Some however enjoy showing off their manhood. Some cover the area with a small piece of cloth which when a step is taken that which was covered peeks out.

If I were to list present day rules, they would be no showing of genitals, no exposed female nipples, no exposed public hair, no public sex. Plus, no fun. The last sentence added by me as a joke.

My yesterday began with a haircut. Lori back from a 2 week Maine vacation. Then lunch at Sandy’s Cafe a few doors down.

My book reading is sporadic. I do so much researching on the internet, I have little time left to read. I seem to be back into reading of late.

I read 2 or 3 books at a time. Move back and forth as the mood strikes me. Two at the moment. Madeleine Albright’s Fascism and Peter Schweizer’s Secret Empires.

Spent the afternoon reading both.

The Chart Room first last night. Met a very interesting couple. Chris and Carrie from Pennsville, New Jersey. First time in Key West. Love it.

Chris is an engineer. Carrie, a nurse. They have 3 children. Nineteen, ten and four.

Chris and Carrie are unique in a certain respect. Each obtained their college degrees later than normal. Chris at 30. Carrie even later.

I enjoyed their company.

Sheila and David arrived. Not together. I have not seen them in ages.

Even Ollie showed up.

David, Ollie and I had a pleasant conversation. Flashes of wisdom make an appearance when you hear David and Ollie express themselves on a subject.

Stopped at the Blue Macaw for a bite to eat. Great Happy Hour! From 4-9. I like that it runs late. I enjoyed ribs at 8.

Ron and Paul at the other end of the bar. They bought me a drink. I was not aware till after they left and I went to pay my bill. Thank you Paul and Ron.

A very attractive woman sitting next to me at the bar. From Maine. We talked about the tariff impact on Maine’s lobster industry. Bad!

She was not aware that the lobster industry exists in the Keys also. Not as large as Maine’s. Significant, however. Spiny lobsters are a multi-million dollar business in the Keys. Largest customers China and Japan. Our lobster fishermen will be taking a hit, also.

Donna and Terri live across the street from the Blue Macaw. They love the area. Terri says it reminds her of the Village in the 1970’s. I stopped and visited my ladies for a while.

Terri was stretched out on the couch. Not feeling well. Donna tired. Worked 10 hours. Bear happy to see me.

Donna is a concierge. On the side, she makes jewelry. Has been doing it for years. She had a showing earlier in the evening. Sold some pieces.

I forgot. Never made it. The first thing she asked when I arrived: Where were you? Embarrassing.

Yesterday hot! Hot hot! Ninety five degrees. Fortunately, very little humidity.

Enjoy your day!

FOUR HORSEMEN OF APOCALYPSE

Too many mornings we wake with new Trump tweets. Some extremely dangerous. Especially those where he threatens another nation with war.

This morning finds Trump in a Tweet pissing match with Iran. Not sure who stated this one. Iran says if the U.S. missteps, it will be me met with the “mother of all wars.”

Trump’s promises “…..dire consequences…..the likes of which few throughout history have ever suffered before. He responds, “We are no longer a country that will stand for your demented words of violence and death. Be cautious.”

Words of war.

Trump reminds me of the Four Horsemen of Apocalypse: Conquest, War, Famine, and Death. I can see them all riding through the clouds. Who is leading them? Donald Trump. Not on the lead horse. On all four.

He finally will have proved to the world (and himself) what a tough guy he is.

Any such war will leave the U.S. in shambles. Such a war will be fought on our shores also. Every day a 9/11.

The U.S. will resemble Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and Berlin following World War II. Many dead. Children maimed.

Wake up America!

Enjoyed the British Open yesterday. Italy’s Francesco Molinari won. Seven or eight in the running the last 9 holes. Tiger Woods the leader at the turn, but faltered.

Good golf played on a tough course.

Visited the Orchid Key Inn bar for the first time last night. Victor invited me. He is the sunday bartender.

What a place? A hidden wonder. Off Duval near Truman. A magnificent setting! The bar charming. Tiny. Seats only 6.

Kevin and Holly were there. I suspected they would be.

A Bruce and Kevin sat next to me. Bruce retired. His career spent with Voice of America. Kevin with the Post Office.

We chatted about Post Office problems. How Congress screwed the Post Office.

Bruce recalled seeing me 10 years ago on Channel 19. I did a TV show for 3 years that ran from Key West to Fort Lauderdale. I was shocked he even watched. Channel 19 was what might be described as a small station. I was one of two live shows. The rest old gray and white TV shows like Leave It To Beaver.

Bruce mentioned the Orchid Key Inn was listed #2 on Trip Adviser under Best Key West Hotels. And I never knew it existed!

Met Peter. For a little bar, it had some interesting customers.

Peter is a musician and has entertained at Sloppy Joe’s for 30 years. From 5:30 to 9:30. Must catch his show one evening.

People came and went. I stayed. The bar was a gold mine of interesting people.

In came David and Louise. Visiting from London. David is with NATO and Louise a kindergarten teacher.

Great conversation. Issues involving Trump, NATO, Trump’s recent visit, etc. Both thought it awful that Trump kept the 92 year old Queen waiting 12 minutes. Standing in the sun waiting for Trump to arrive.

My night was not over yet.

Went over to Blue McCaw. A late bite to eat. Ribs and a drink.

Not ready for bed and home when I left Blue McCaw. Donna and Terri live across the street. Visited with them a while.

Dueling Bartenders tonight. Terri wanted to go. Donna working. Terri my date. I pick her up at 5:30. I expect Jean, Kevin, Holly and John will be there also.

To win the Hemingway Look-a-Like contest a big deal. The honor of honors to those interested. One hundred twenty five plus compete each year. For some reason, it takes roughly 10 years of participation to be seriously considered.

This year’s winner Michael Groover. Michael is husband to celebrity chef and TV star Paula Deen. Paula the loyal wife. She has been in Key West supporting her husband those 10 years of Hemingway Day visits.

BOB back. Rested and ready to go.

BOB’s topic today Fantasy Fest.

The Key West of 39 years ago was not the Key West of today. In addition to the summer being slow, the fall was dead. Key West merchants came up with a plan they thought would attract tourists to Key West during the slow fall season.

A fantasy fest. An adult party. Flavors of a Roman holiday. A bit of debauchery.

It worked. Key West’s famous Fantasy Fest was born. Ten days of partying each year.

Wilder as the years progressed. Nudity became an issue. Drinking, also.

Women began going bare chested. Men covering their genitalia with a small strip of cloth.

The partiers did not mind. Locals neither. They participated. Except for a few. The few were one or two ministers annually. They formed the Christian Coalition. The Christian Coalition was supported by very few. City fathers were thrilled. Key West was making a ton of money during those 10 days.

BOB said, “Morality and good taste were susupended…..an abyss filled.” BOB added the opposing ministers forgot to recognize that Key West churches were filled will sinners seeking forgiveness in the weeks following Fantasy Fest.

Women’s naked breasts were painted by kiosks on the streets. Many for real costumes were oversized genitalia. Alcohol was being consumed on the streets.

The Duval Crawl took on added meaning.  As BOB humorously said, “See the Lower Keys on your hands and knees. America is calling you today.”

Back in the early days, 50,000 would show up for the saturday night parade. No one knew where they all slept. When awake however, they “simply enjoyed the wicked and titillating surrender to their basic instincts.”

The squeaky wheel always gets oiled. The Christian Coalition was a squeaky wheel. Compromises were arrived at. All revealed in the next episode of BOB.

Enjoy your day!

 

PIG HUMPS A HARLEY-DAVIDSON

On this day of international significance, I opt to open with levity.

I am sick of Trump and the worldwide aggravations he has caused. Wake up America. Trump is destroying our country. He and his party must be voted out. Hopefully, it will not be too late.

Levity a BOB story. Involves Chi Chi. A Vietnamese pot bellied pig living in Key West in the mid 1990’s.

Chi Chi became enamored with the next door neighbor’s Harley-Davidson. Began humping the Harley’s front tire. In the process, scratched the Harley’s paint.

The damage more than $100.

The Monroe County Animal Control took Chi Chi to the pen. An animal pen.

In effect, Chi Chi had been arrested. Technically, his owner charged.

Chi Chi could have been turned into bacon. Several weeks elapsed while Chi Chi’s owner, the Harley-Davidson’s owner, judges and attorneys argued over what should be done with Chi Chi.

Consumed the community. A matter of importance. Imagine, an animal sex act with a Harley causing such furor. The judge intended to sentence Chi Chi to death.

A judgment of execution was stayed.

A decision finally arrived at. Chi Chi was to be neutered.

How cruel!

Chi Chi would no longer be looking for love in all the wrong places. He would not be looking for love anywhere!

BOB had one further comment re the summer doldrums discussed yesterday. The end of the summer found Key Westers looking to the horizon. Hurricane conversations consumed the populace.

Later this morning, I return with Key West Lou Live. My 3-4 minute video on Facebook. Ranting and raving. Hope you will join me. As MacArthur said, “I have returned!”

Sunday purportedly a day of rest. I recall when younger, sundays were respected as such. Practically and legally. Blue laws kept stores closed on sundays.

Yesterday was a day of rest for me. Remained in all day and night. Did my blog. researched a bit. Read. Watched TV. Napped.

A very good day! I needed it.

The Helsinki summit/meeting today. Not sure what it is at this point. I probably will comment on its results, if any, tomorrow.

What goes around comes around. Trump generally keeps persons of importance waiting. He did it with the Queen a few days ago. Boosts his ego. Makes him feel important.

TV news just announced Putin will be late.

Ho ho!

Dueling Bartenders tonight. Shopping for groceries earlier. I am out of food again!

Enjoy your day!

DON’T BRING SHEEP IN THE BACK DOOR

BOB wrote of September in Key West. Remember, BOB is writing as it was in the mid 1990’s. The doldrums. Tourist industry flat. Heat oppressive.

The saying back then was you could throw a bowling ball down Duval and hit no one.

BOB wrote “…..we are thrown on our meager resources, bar tabs rise, hurricanes are tracked, and the mood becomes introspective.” Further, living in Key West under these conditions is “…..not good for a terminally weird population.”

An overheard comment illustrates the point: “You know what’s interesting about this place? / No, what? / Well, if you like to screw sheep, and you bring ’em in your front door, your neighbor could care less and think none the less of you. But if you bring them in the back door, people get really suspicious about what’s going on. / Dead on.”

I intended to take part in Mel Fisher Days last night at Schooner Wharf. Jean Thornton scheduled as a celebrity bartender. Got side tracked, never made it.

Guy de Boer called. Stop over for a drink. I had never seen his home on Flagler. Was curious. It is one of those multi million dollar places just off South Roosevelt Drive.

Magnificent!

We sat in the back by the pool overlooking a wide canal. One drink led to a few more.

Hunger arrived. Guy suggested Moe’s on White Street. I have not been to Moe’s in 15 years. Food good back then. New owners today. The food just as good.

An enjoyable evening.

Tomorrow, I bring Key West Lou Live back to Facebook. Three to four minutes of current commentary. Guaranteed you will enjoy my ranting and raving. Join me. Any time of the day.

Jim Jordan is a bull in a China shop. Worse than Trump. Tasteless, classless.

He may be receiving his comeuppance.

Jordan was an assistant wrestling coach at Ohio State University back when. It is now claimed that team Doctor Strauss was perpetrating some sort of sexual abuse on team members. It is further claimed Jordan was aware and did nothing about it.

The issue involves awareness. Jordan denies awareness.

What is good for the goose is good for the gander. Penn State’s revered Joe Paterno died in shame because of a similar situation. His campus statue taken down. If what was true concerning Paterno is true with Jordan, then Jordan deserves public rebuke also.

I have been against the use of mercenary soldiers since day one. Also the privatization of governmental agencies. In due course, no good rears its ugly head.

Blackwater was the first major mercenary providing corporation. Eric Prince its founder. Some questionable conduct resulted in Blackwater ceasing to exist. A new company was formed. Frontier Services Group.

Both organizations headed by Eric Prince.

Prince has been working with the CIA on a plan to withdraw active U.S. troops from Afghanistan and replace them with a force solely comprised of mercenaries. Six thousand of them.

It could sell. Big money involved.

Always follow the money. Money paid for mercenaries significant. Prince’s sister a member of Trump’s cabinet. Contributions to the Trump campaign huge.

Corruption generally follows.

Another concern from my end is that mercenaries could easily become the private army of a despot. A cause for concern with a President who would like to be President for life.

Madeleine Alright’s Fascism continues to intrigue me. Deals obviously with authoritarian figures. I have just completed my review of Mussolini. Next, Hitler.

Re Mussolini, I set forth two significant quotes from the book.

Twentieth century Fascism began “with a magnetic leader exploiting widespread dissatisfaction by promising all things.”

The other, “He sought to govern well, but to do that, he felt the need to rule absolutely. He had full trust in his own judgment, and there was no satiating his hunger for power.”

Familiar? Characteristics of a today person?

Trump failed to impress the English. Two hundred fifty thousand UK’s marched in opposition to his visit.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

TRUMP WILL DISAPPOINT

Some people cannot win for losing. Donald Trump is one. He started off big. Many believed in him. The second coming. He is beginning to fail in the eyes of some who initially supported him.

I am plodding through Madeleine Albright’s Fascism. In one part she writes of Benito Mussolini. Reminds me to a degree of how some thought/think of Trump.

She wrote: Thomas Edison hailed him as the “genius of the modern age”; Gandhi as a “superman.” Winston Churchill pledged to stand by him in his “struggle against the bestial appetites of Leninism.” Newspapers in Rome, host to the Vatican, referred to him as “the incarnation of God.” In the end, people who had worshiped his every move hung his corpse upside down next to his mistress’s near a gas station in Milan.

Albright wrote elsewhere re Mussolini’s speaking prowess: He knew the value of the popular touch and usually succeeded in eliciting whoops of approval from his audience. Before long, he had come to consider himself a man of destiny…..

Last night, the Blue MacCaw again. Guest of Donna and Terri.

My opinion remains the same. A winner! Food and drink reasonable. People cheerful. Entertainment excellent.

Blue MacCaw has been added to my list of watering holes.

Ran into Paul and Ron again. Second night in a row. We have become instantaneous friends. They knew Donna and Terri when Terri was performing in Washington.

Less I forget, Happy Hour is 4-9. A big one!

From Key West to Paris. Today is Bastille Day. On this day in 1789, the Bastille was stormed. The turning point of the French Revolution. France celebrates its Revolution on this day. A Revolution that lasted 10 years.

Charles Dickens wrote A Tale of Two Cities. A book that reflected conditions leading to the French Revolution and Reign of Terror: “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times….. it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair.”

BOB reflects on Bum Farto’s trial and its aftermath.

Farto was convicted. Sentenced to 30 years. Most of the other 29 defendants fared better. After an unbelievable series of delays, mistrials, bribes, jury tampering, and legal chicanery, most walked free.

Farto appealed. He was out on bail pending the appeal. In that interim, Farto worked to get a lesser sentence. His choices two fold. Turn on and testify against those not convicted. Or, the Golden Parachute. Bribe someone.

Neither option worked. A third option presented itself. If he could, disappear. Forever.

He disappeared.

The story at this point a bit murky. He backed out of his driveway one day, only to be surrounded by two black cars and a tractor trailer. Or, he backed out and simply drove away.

Farto’s car was found in Miami two weeks later.

Farto was never found.

Had he gone the way of Jimmy Hoffa? Perhaps buried in the concrete below I-95? Or, had he made it to Bali, the Fiji Islands or somewhere in Europe or Asia?

Farto’s wife waited 2 1/2 weeks before she reported his disappearance to the police. She told them she was so upset that she could not call them earlier. Truth be told, she and Bum had not been getting along and she could have cared less.

T-shirts began coming out with various inscriptions. The first was El Jefe. Then one with a B-25 dropping bombs with writing below: Bum’s Away. The next was Where Is Bum Farto? The final and still available one is Bum Farto, Where Are You?

And so the saga of Bum Farto ends. Tomorrow, another BOB begins.

Obviously, the English people do not like Trump. So many planned to demonstrate in London that the authorities called off the reception initially planned for him.

Trump and Melania were to be driven through London in a horse drawn open carriage. Normally, thousands would have been on the curbs cheering them. However, this time jeering.

That evening a white tie black tail event. Canceled for the same reason as the parade.

Trump experienced a bummer. He was relegated to tea with the Queen at Windsor castle. The event took 17 minutes. Before, he and the Queen inspected a line of troops in front of the castle.

The public not at either event.

If I were one here in America who had been involved in the Russian hacking, I would be concerned. The indictment revealed yesterday which involved 12 Russians was sufficiently detailed to convince the Russians hacked the election.

There will be at least one more set of indictments. Maybe more. Whatever, I would expect the next set to identify those in the United States who were involved in some fashion.

Key West Lou Live returns monday on Facebook. I missed doing it. Loved being able to rant and rave 3-4 minutes on a topic. Take a look.

Enjoy your day!

 

.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY LOUIS

 

Today is my birthday. Eighty three years. Wow!

Time moves fast. Everything just yesterday. High school, college, law school, marriage, children, grandchildren, court cases, successful practice, mistakes made, lessons learned, etc.

I feel good for my age. The body breaks down as we go along. Mine started around 60. You go to the doctor and hope they can fix whatever it is. Generally can. As you get older however, you become concerned about the day something many not be able to be fixed.

Mentally, I am still 35. Amazing! The issue of mental age comes up in conversations among the elderly. Everyone is between 25-45. Interesting.

My poor Mother. Several times she reminded me of my birth. Mid summer 1935. Hot. Humid. No air  conditioning. Not invented yet. The hospital sweltering!!!

Took 26 hours of labor for me to make my entrance.

I was born in Utica’s General Hospital. A welfare type hospital for the poor. Amazing how this country provides the opportunity to live a better more affluent life.

I look forward to 84. Hopefully many more years following. My Dad made it to 98, his father 94, his sister 102. One condition. I would want to be in good shape physically and mentally.

Midnight was the beginning of a dark day for global trade. Trump permitted his threatened tariffs re China to go into effect. China waited hoping Trump would back off. When he did not, China imposed retaliatory tariffs.

China described what occurred as the beginning of the “largest trade war in history.” An economist described the event as “typical trade bullying.”

The first salvo has been fired. America will be the first casualty. Trump does not understand. An example the soybean farmers who will not be able to sell their product. The U.S. supplies China with 60 percent of its soybean imports.

Take a walk back in time. Herbert Hoover elected President. It is 1928. The stock market booming. At an all time high. Hoover a protectionist. Believed in tariffs. Could not leave well enough alone. Imposed tariffs. One year later, the Great Depression.

Trump was in Montana last night at a rally. His audience a mere 6,500. Down dramatically from the many thousands who previously attended. A smaller audience, seated closer together, to make the place look more full.

Trump’s mouth his worst enemy. Among other sad/improper things uttered last night included knocking Bush I and John McCain. Both war heroes. Bush shot down twice during World War II. McCain spent six years in a Vietnamese concentration camp, tortured non stop.

Trump was a draft dodger.

The man knocks everyone and everything. Lies consistently. Thinks he knows everything. He is leading us to a doom.

Chart Room last night. As always, a good and interesting time.

Steve and Cindy back. I have been looking to their return. They lived in Key West in the early and mid 1970’s when things were different. On the wild side! I take notes rapidly. Add a bit of research, each becomes a story to be written.

Dorothy in for a few days. Her dentist husband died two years ago. It was good to see her again. An author who achieved success. Dorothy has a sharp mind. It was evident when a new friend, Ray from Dublin, told us a great joke. Dorothy had an instantaneous  follow up that fit.

Met a most interesting couple. One Ray already mentioned and his wife Augusta. World travelers of sorts. Ray has been in the oil business over the years in one capacity or another. Retired now, invests primarily in oil stocks and other types he believes are going to move. Apparently successful.

Enjoyed their company. Ray and I disagree on one point. He has traveled the world living and working. He believes Trump will be viewed as the greatest U.S. President since Reagan.

Bothersome. Worries me.

Trump overwhelms the news. As a result, we fail to get sufficient information re what is going on in the rest of the world. Nicaragua, for example.

A horrendous conflict once again. The government killing people randomly. The war relatively new. Three weeks. A full blown civil war in the making.

The conflict includes the Catholic Church which is opposed to what is going on. Involved are President Daniel Ortega. He was President many years ago. And his wife Rosario Murillo. She, Vice-President.

The Vice-President wife recently said God favors repression against priests and people. Trump not the only one who is sick.

Bad days in Nicaragua that will only get worse. People will flee the country. U.S. borders will be closed to them.

BOB begged off again this morning. Still tired from the fireworks. The trial result and what followed left to tomorrow. Hopefully.

One thing I learned last night was that Bum Farto was involved in more than drugs. Prostitution. He drove El Jefe around dropping off prostitutes and picking them up when their work was done.

Enjoy your day!

“I’LL PROBABLY GO THE SAME WAY”

 

Fifty seven years ago today. July 2, 1961. A sad day.

Ernest Hemingway committed suicide. At his then home in Sun Valley, Idaho.

One of the greats in the annals of literary history. A favorite son of Key West.

Hemingway’s father Dr. Clarence Hemingway committed suicide many years earlier. Hemingway said at the time: “I’ll probably go the same way.”

A quiet evening last night. A drink at the Chart Room and grocery shopping at Publix. The refrigerator was empty again.

BOB returns. The Bum Farto saga continued.

Authorities did not initially pay attention to drug dealing in Key West. Farto and friends became aware. He and some Bubba friends decided to make some easy money.

Farto fixed up El Jefe and his personal appearance. What he was doing became open and notorious. El Jefe was lime green to begin and carried a sign with El Jefe on it. Farto added a bright gold eagle to the hood, together with reflective glass and two sawed off shotguns.

He uniformed himself. He wore a shocking pink uniform, rose colored glasses, and a generous helping of gold jewelry.

Farto was on the way! His new career took off! Drug dealer!

Ssles and deliveries were made from El Jefe. The drugs secreted in McDonald lunch bags and pizza boxes.

Dealing drugs did not interfere with Farto continuing his regular job as Fire Chief.

The operation expanded. Thirty some odd fellow Key West citizens became involved. None, including Farto, were Mafia types. They merely happened upon an easy way to make money and said why not. Never seriously considering the consequences.

Federal authorities became aware. No one sure how. The flamboyant manner in which Farto was doing business? Someone squealed? The answer not known.

There was a massive arrest by authorities. Thirty in all. Farto included. Referred to as the Big Bubba Bust.

The timing had one inconvenient factor. Key West’s primary bail bondsman was among those arrested. The only other bondsman was out of town on vacation.

Who was going to bail these good citizens of Key West out of jail?

The bonding company Bankers Casualty Insurance Company became involved. Probably because they did not want to lose all the money they could make bonding thirty good and true men out of jail. The Company arranged for the release of the bondsman who in turn bailed out the remaining 29 defendants.

The best is yet to come.

To be continued…..

ICE is going to become well known to the American people. Some have begun referring to ICE as Trump’s private army. A scary thought.

My immediate concern is where are the babies and girls? Yesterday, photos of some of the girls were shown. Where are they? Where are the babies? What is going on? Time to open the doors and let the media and public in. I fear something bad has occurred.

On this day in 1964, President Lyndon Johnson signed into law the Civil Rights Act. A monumental moment!

Color would no longer be an issue. Did not work out that way. Things are better. However, race still an issue in our country. Trump I suspect a racist.

We have a long way to go.

On this day in 1881, President James Garfield was shot. He died some 80 days later. His doctors killed him, not the assassin who shot him.

A few yeas ago, I wrote a KONK Life column on the topic. I asked Sloan this morning to dig it out. If she finds it, I plan on running the column as tomorrow’s blog adding only a brief introduction.

The moment of truth is upon us. The truth re Trump’s use of tariffs to enhance the U.S. economically.

Yesterday, Canada began adding new tariffs totaling $12.6 billion on U.S. products. China begins friday when it will add new tariffs totaling $34 billion. U.S. soybean farmers are going to be hit big time. China’s tariffs are being imposed on the same day the U.S. is adding $34 billion on Chinese goods.

Harley-Davidson has already said it is moving a significant number of its production lines out of the U.S. because of the tariffs. Nine thousand jobs will be gone.

General Motors and Polaris warned in recent days that they may have to take certain of their businesses overseas.

The largest U.S. nail manufacturer, Mid-Continental Nail, announced it has laid off 60 employees already because of the tariffs. The Company further advised that if something is not done to correct the situation, it will be out of business by Labor Day.

Helicopter assisted escapes from jails becoming commonplace. Forty nine since 1971. Thirty successful, nineteen failed.

Yesterday at a jail outside Paris, Redoine Fain successfully escaped. A stolen helicopter landed inside jail walls, picked up Fain, and were up and away in less than a minute.

Since 1971, seven movies, a number of TV shows, and several books have been written re the “art” of jail helicopter escapes.

Tonight, one of my Key West favorites. Aqua’s Dueling Bartenders. I find it relaxing to sit, have a couple of drinks, and sing along with the bartenders.

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!

BOB…..CRAPPING IN YOUR PANTS

Bob Smith’s BOB was written over a period of time ending in 1997. Bob viewed the world at that time. I knew Bob. He talked of world/political events frequently. A concerned person.

The chapter I draw on today is titled Remedial Reasoning. Expresses Bob’s thoughts on how to correct things and why.

First, a new college was to be established. The University of What’s Happening Now. Bob would be a full professor, of course. A primary motivation reflecting the need for the new type institution was that the bizarre at the time was being accepted as the norm.

Sound familiar?

Bob intended teaching Wisen You Up 101. Other courses included Humanity and how not to be a victim, Real estate and sexual assault and how to discern the difference, The entire legal system and how never to be involved, and Pragmatism the word of the day.

Bob ventured that people can be toilet trained, but could not be trained to deal with new matters unless in imminent physical danger. He was referring to then matters of concern such as global warming, the ozone layer, etc.

Bob compared people’s inability to get it or act on a potential danger was a consequence similar to “crapping in your pants.”

Things have not changed much since 1997 when Bob shared his thoughts. Most do not want to learn. Some have a vested interest which mandates they close their eyes.

Spent my sunday afternoon writing this week’s KONK Life column. World Running Out Of Sand. Excellent reading. Most unaware re the nature of usable sand and that in due course it will exist no more. Sand being a non-renewable resource.

Later stopped at the Marriott Beachside for the sunday newspapers. Then to Sandy’s Cafe for dinner. My usual. Cuban cheese toast with tomato and a diet Coke.

Home or the Chart Room next? Decided to stop by the Chart Room for a drink and some conversation. Glad I did. Old friends Cheryl and Roger at the bar.

Cheryl and Roger from the Chicago area. Still have a home there. For years, Key West snowbirds. They enjoyed a huge RV that they parked several months a year on Stock Island.

We became friend. Two finer people, I do not know. Loyal blog readers. Bought Irma and Me right away. Have introduced their friends to this blog.

I also like them because I enjoy their company.

I knew they would be arriving for a few days. Not exactly when. They arrived at the Pier House where they were staying around 5. I met up with them at 7.

Cheryl and Roger purchased another home somewhere on Florida’s west coast. They drove down and will be staying till wednesday.

We will be together tonight. Roger’s turn to buy. We will dine at Antonia’s. Earlier, they will be my guests at Dueling Bartenders. They have never been.

This morning’s Key West Citizen ran an article about parking in the 100 block of Simonton. A real problem. Recent construction contributing.

The problem will be resolved in due course. Some parking on a pay basis will be permitted. Not the whole block, however.

My concern even greater. Fix Simonton Street in that area. The road condition horrendous! Terrible! Stop paying for generally useless studies for a while and put the money into road repairs. My kidneys are beginning to hurt!

Continue to love whoever does the Citizen weather reports. In very fine print under each day’s forecast is an interesting and/or humorous tidbit.

Humidity has been heavy lately. A breeze generally non-existent. Even a small one would help.

The weatherman’s comment for today: “Can I buy a breeze?”

Someone at a criminal court house in Miami writes a blog that I read. The Justice Building Blog. Sometimes merely legal matters. Others, tell it like it is.

The blog always ends with the admonition: Fight The Power!

Yesterdays blog contained a phrase worth repeating: “…..where we don’t yet burn books…..we do rip infants from the arms of their mothers.”

There will be demonstrations across the land this weekend. Protesting the Trump administration separating children from parents, maintaining immigrant children in detention type facilities, most information concerning the children kept secret, etc.

I am concerned. Violence could erupt. Retaliatory to the President’s actions. If so, the seeds of rebellion will have been planted. To erupt another day.

I recall vividly the Vietnam War demonstrations. Some violent. I thought terrible. I was concerned. Where was my country headed?

The two events different. As bad as the anti-Vietnam cries were, the situation with the immigrant children even worse. Separating children from parents strikes at the core of one’s being. Party lines disappear. The evil that men are capable of doing becomes obvious.

What will come of all this?

Enjoy your day!