Happy New Year!

To most of the country freezing their butts off, Happy New Year! Hang in there. Warm weather will return. It always does.

I received an early morning Happy New Year from a Utica friend. Minus sixteen degrees! I remember those days. Brutal!

Chilly in Key West last night. I am ashamed to say got down to 65 degrees. I turned the heat on. You would too if you lived here all year long. Your blood thins. You are more susceptible to cold.

Key West very cold around the corner. Temperatures in the 50’s. Tomorrow night, low 62. Then a few days with the high in the mid 60’s and night times in the mid 50’s.

Key West style cold!

I remained in last night. The highlight of my evening the Syracuse/Virginia Tech game. Syracuse won 68-56. Syracuse played terrific!

Virginia Tech came into the game with the top field goal percentage in the nation. 54.5 percent. Fourth re 3 shooting percentage. 43.7. Syracuse kept Virginia Tech well below those numbers.

Syracuse’s defense outstanding! Shooting  much better. The team was making shots. Still need improvement in the shooting area, however.

A tough ACC schedule ahead.

Go ‘Cuse!

I wanted to be awake at midnight to watch the ball fall. Missed it. Woke at 12:15. Watched some blabbing from New York. Found New Orleans at 1 my time for their Happy New Year. Provided me with the thrill of it all.

CNN ran Key West 15 minutes after Sushi came down in the shoe. She was walking around by the time they got to her. Never the less, still good. An attractive Sushi in a bright red dress. She makes all her clothes herself. The crowd huge and noisy.

Key West has more than one person descending something or other at midnight. The pirate wench at the Waterfront always a hit. She (a for real one) comes down from the top of a tall ship’s mast. Other descents include a conch shell, Keys lime wedge, unicorn and a tuna.

Something for everyone!

New Year’s Day was not always celebrated January 1. The early calendar was a mess. Unreliable. Followed the lunar cycle. Changed a bit every year. The bits turned into a large number at some point and adjustments had to be made.

Julius Caesar said enough! In 45 B.C., the Julian calendar took effect. Caesar took a little glory from the event. Quintilis was the original name of July. Caesar changed it to July, naming the month after himself.

In the 1570’s, the calendar was still screwed up. By the year 1,000, the calendar had added 7 days. By the mid 1500’s, 10 days.

Pope Gregory III solved the problem by adding 1 day to the calendar every 4 years. Leap year! Still works today.

The new calendar became known as the Gregorian calendar.

Key West’s Dachshund Walk yesterday a success. More than 200 dachshunds participated.

I receive my daily Key West Citizen via the internet. No January 1 edition this morning. Why? I hope it was not because the Citizen gave its workers a day off because of the holiday. A lot of Key Westers worked yesterday. The Citizen should have also, if such was the reason.

Enjoy your day!


There is a blog I have followed for several months. Posts several times a week. The Justice Building Blog.

The blog appears to be written by a Miami attorney. Pin points court house gossip and fact. Sometimes hits out at Trump and things happening not consistent with our democratic way of life.

The blog always signs off the same way: From Occupied America…..Fight The Power.

The ending apropos.

A pleasant few minutes with Lori yesterday. Before she began, she took me by the hand and led me outside. To show me her business sign: Blown Away.

Lori has been in her new quarters almost two years. Her husband the busiest sign maker in Key West. He never had time to make a sign for wife Lori and put it up.

He finally did as a Christmas present this year. At a time when he is additionally busy because of Irma.

He did the right thing. He now has a happy wife! She has been bothered by not having a sign up.

Spent my time in the Chart Room last night. John bartending. Business so so. People wandering in and out.

Spoke with a 72 year old man. He had a heart problem similar to mine. Aortic Stenosis. The aortic artery as it passes through the heart narrows. Narrows too much and you’re gone!

He had the surgery 6 months ago. Done through the ribs. Bovine used. A vein or artery from a cow, I assume. Previously, a pig.

He claims he is energized since the surgery.

My problem was discovered seven years ago. Surgery much more complicated at the time. Surgery four or more hours. Lengthy hospitalization. Six month recovery period.

The man was out of the hospital in five days.

Modern medicine advances swiftly.

I was aware the procedure was much simpler at this time. I asked my heart doctor recently why we didn’t do it now. I am getting older. Lets get it done before I get any older and might not be able to handle the surgery.

He was against it. Told me about the movie star Bill Paxton. He had it done when discovered. His philosophy do me when I am young and strong.

He died as a result of the surgery.

My doctor says wait. Tells me I am not ready yet, does not want me to be another Bill Paxton.

I have changed my New Year’s Eve plans. The game plan was to be with Donna and Terri and several others for the evening. Abandozza for dinner at 7. Aqua at 9 for the drag show. The street in front of Bourbon Street at midnight to watch Sushi come down in a shoe.

I thought I could handle it. Upon further consideration, decided the evening too much for me. Spoke with Donna last night. Told her to take me off the list.

The evening not a total failure. Syracuse plays Virginia Tech at 6.

Christmas week is the busiest week of the year in Key West. How busy? I observed last night more bicycles on the streets than cars. And more people crossing the street at intersections without looking.

Every evening a disaster waiting to occur. Rarely does one, however.

Friend Kevin Malloy was in a scooter accident December 13. Just found out. He was helicoptered immediately to Miami. Still in the hospital.

Hurt pretty bad. Broke 8 ribs. Four had to be plated. Badly road burned his face. Required plastic surgery.

He is on the mend. God bless! I look forward to sharing his company again soon.

Think Trump is crazy? The world is crazy!

Yemen has been involved in a three year war. Soldiers needed. Children have been recruited for three years. Two thousand one hundred twenty two so far, not including 2017. Ages generally 12-16. Some as young as 7.

Recruiting/compelling the young to fight who are under the age of 15 is a war crime under International Law.

Who can do anything about it? Can anything be accomplished?

Arab countries in western Asia are exploding. Yemen one example.

Trump is unaware of many things. One, the limits of his Presidential power. He thinks he is omnipotent. A king rather that an elected officer of the people. Acts autocratically all the time.

In an impromptu interview by Michael Schmidt of the New York Times yesterday afternoon, one of the revelations was Trump being of the opinion because he is President he could do anything he wanted with the Justice Department.

The last President who thought that way was Richard Nixon.

Forget not Irma and Me. Available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and KoboBooks.

Enjoy your day!





The beginning of Fantasy Fest. Goombay, last night.

Been doing Goombay for at least 15 years. Never changes. Except it gets bigger. Longer, more stands, new restaurants. Band at end of Petronia more sophisticated. A Larry Smith presentation last night. Christine Cordone singing. Several accompanists.

Joni with me. An interesting woman. Former Sunoco executive. Sharp.

Met Joni for last night’s fun experience behind Bourbon Street. A drink. Listened to some music.

Prior to meeting Joni, stopped at 801. The customary Don’s Place crowd. A tradition has developed. A group goes together. Leaves by taxi from Don’s Place. Dropped off at 801. A couple of drinks.

I was early for my Joni meet. Stopped into 801 looking for my friends. As expected, they were there!

Joni and I walked Petronia to the big band stand at the end. I kept telling her to stop where ever and we would buy some stand food. She never took me up on the offer. I suspected she was not fond of the food either. Never has turned me on.

Therefore, we stopped into Blue Heaven. Sat in the restaurant part and enjoyed some food.

Joni lives on Petronia. Two hundred feet off Duval. Thought I was dropping her off. No, she was not ready yet. So it was off to Bourbon Street’s front bar.

I have never been to Bourbon Street late at night. A different experience.

The place was mad!

Lots of ladies. Dancing up a storm.

Employees walking around in black jock straps and black bow ties.

My back was to the bar. I turned around. One of the jock strap guys was dancing on the bar.

Strip joints have women dancing on the bar, stage, etc. wearing nothing. Mostly men in the audience, though a handful of women. Last night at Bourbon street similar, except lots of men and a handful of women.

Syracuse/Miami 3:30 this afternoon. ESPN. Syracuse 4-3, Miami 6-0. Miami a 17 point favorite.

Can Syracuse duplicate its victory over Clemson last week with a win over Miami this week?

The opioid crisis not being handled well. During the campaign, Trump labeled it a crisis. After the  election, no crisis but he would deal with it. This past week, Trump returned to describing it is a crisis.

While he vacillates, Rome is burning! 142 a day dying in the U.S. from opioid overdosing.

The Comments section to this blog is active. Some strong political differences.  I have mentioned armed masked mercenaries walking the streets of Puerto Rico two times this past week. No comment from anyone. Isn’t the issue worth discussing. I see it as San Juan today, New York, Los Angeles or Miami tomorrow.

Our country stranger by the day. What happened to the America of old? Dickinson, Texas an example.

Harvey did a number on Dickinson. Residents need money to rebuild and/or replace belongings. The application for funding is titled Harvey Repair Grant. Contains a strange clause. In order to qualify for the funds, one must sign a verification not to boycott Israel.

What the hell does Israel have to do with U.S. citizens obtaining money form its own government to get through the Harvey crisis?

The Verification reads as follows: VERIFICATION NOT TO BOYCOTT ISRAEL: By executing this agreement below, the applicant verifies that the applicant: (1) Does not boycott Israel; and (2) will not boycott Israel during the term of this Agreement.

The Verification is based on a recently passed Texas State law requiring contractors to so certify. Which by local hands has been extended to applicants themselves.

This pledge conditions Harvey relief. Requires the signed pledge not to boycott in order to get funding to rebuild.

Clearly violates the First Amendment.

No question Texas is a conservative state. Occasionally, far to the right. The Verification an example.

A further example also of the crazy people running our government. From the White House down to the Texas State Legislature to the Texas Governor who signed it into law.

Another day, no Irma and Me. I hate the waiting!

Enjoy your day!



Stealing from Mac Arthur…..I have returned! Gene Autry…..I’m back in the saddle again!

It is good to be home.

I got in at 4 thursday afternoon after two days of driving. Birmingham to Key West. Eight hours each day.

No question, a few days does make a difference. Specifically with regard to traffic. Little traffic. Very little. Only spots crowded were Orlando and Miami. I used the Florida Turnpike.

No waiting in line for gasoline. Pumps available at all times.

The second day was depressing, however.

I spent all day listening to the radio re the Mexican school collapse and the search for Frida Sophia and perhaps several other children. Drama! Heart wrenching!

Yesterday, we were told by Mexican authorities that there was no Frida or any other children beneath the wreckage. Alive or dead. The situation “not a reality.”

There has to be more to the story. Does not make sense to me.

The search for the children weighed heavy. To it was added another sadness. I saw what Irma did to the Keys.

Beginning with Florida City, a relatively small tree down here and there. Just outside Marathon, you could sense things were going to get bad. They did.

Beginning at the Marathon point and down to Sugarloaf, everything got consistently worse. Debris piled on the side of US 1. Furniture and mattresses. Refrigerators. Boats upside down. Cars on their sides. Roofs off. Buildings down.

Big Pine, an absolute disaster. It was as if King Kong had stomped all over it.

Summerland, Cudjoe and Sugarloaf hit badly, also.

I had been informed I would see many refrigerators. Apparently they fly through the air with the greatest of ease. I even saw one in a tree. A big one. About 15 feet up, laying sideways on a couple of big branches.

The damage itself was too much to take. Coupled with the little girl under the Mexican school, both scearios combined too much to take. Tears were actually slowly rolling down my cheeks at one point.

Key West was a different story. Damage, yes. A roof gone here and there. Most signs blown through. Trees the real problem. Toppled. Size immaterial. Big and little ones.

My new home is in an area covered with large trees. A cathedral type appearance over the streets.

No more. I was shocked! at least half the trees down. The roads one lane. Piled debris on road side heavy.

My new home survived. No damage. Except for a big tree in front and 5 little ones (20 footers) in the back.

I thought I was returning to full services. No Comcast television, computer and landline. All three I discovered have been off since September 7. One day after I left, three days before Irma hit.

Comcast no help. Comcast’s attitude always the same. Don’t care/don’t bother me.

I called to ask when I would get service. The operator did not know. Asked if I was aware there had been a hurricane.

I am getting wi-fi from my cell phone. A special app. Extra cost.

I went out thursday night. Duval Street a ghost town. Places still boarded. No one on the street.

Met up with John, Kevin and Molly at Bourbon Street. Very few bars open. Food, forget it!

On the way home, I stopped at the Marriott Beachside. Asked for a menu. No food! Enjoyed a drink, met some nice folks who live on the golf course, also.

Yesterday a busy one. Up early. Stopped at Verizon and Publix. Only one Publix open. Customers looked sad. Heads down, asses dragging. A remnant of Irma?

Also got a haircut, manicure and pedicure.

I was energized all day. Assume it must have been the time I spent at Jean and Joe’s. Restful.

Dinner last night with Don and David at Pepi’s. One of the few restaurants open. They were only serving off the luncheon menu and did not have all of the items listed. I enjoyed a huge cheeseburger.

The tree in the center of the outside dining room did fall. Big time! Never more to stand. Destroyed part of the roof portion. The roots pulled up half the concrete floor.

One thing bothered me. The FEMA presence in the parking lot on Simonton behind the fire station. Two huge white tents. took up 2/3’s of the parking. Roped off. A couple of hundred people going in and out of the tents signing up for FEMA. Mostly Bahama Village residents. Everyone happy.

What bothered me were the two Homeland Security guards/officers. Uniformed. Never saw one before.

Tall, thin, crew cut hair, blue uniforms and guns on the hips. Reminded me of the neo-Nazis in Greece I have written about many times.

Their appearance bothered me. I asked myself why does this agency need its own military force.

A fire yesterday. 717 Duval. Reported flames engulfed the building. Fire Department got the fire under control. the building housed a tattoo shop.

Food is a problem. There is  scarcity. Monroe County announced free breakfasts and lunches to all school children till October 25.

I compliment Senator Mc Cain on his Obamacare stand.

Two observations.

Google maps. First time I ever used the service. Off my cell phone. Where have I been? Wow!

The Key West Citizen. Could be the beginning of the end. The Citizen is downsizing. Henceforth the Citizen will produce only two editions a week. A weekend edition on saturday. another edition on wednesday. The Citizen will also soon be moving its operation to Miami.

Sad. A Key West tradition.

Syracuse/LSU tonight. LSU favored by 23 points. Would like to watch the game, never the less. Jack Flats still closed. Might watch at Don’s Place.

I will be doing my Key West Lou Live video on Facebook later this afternoon. A quick few minutes. Interesting dialogue.

Enjoy your day!



The most beautiful sound I ever heard: Maria, Maria, Maria…..I’ve just met a girl named Maria /And suddenly that name / Will never be the same…..Maria!

The West Side Story’s music happy. Irma has not been. Now comes Maria. The song resonates. However, Maria may make us unhappy. As unhappy as Irma.

Maria on her way. A category 3 at the moment. On a path similar to Irma. Could come right over the Keys and Florida. Maybe not. Maria has a slight bend to the east.

Jose in between. The male meaningless. Expected to downgrade to a tropical storm. If it landfalls, probably the northeast coast of the United States.

For some, Keys’ living is a dream. Paradise. The reason they located here. Irma destroyed that dream for many. The Keys will recover. The time in between will be difficult.

As Irma approached, the issue for many was whether to stay. Significantly more left than stayed.

A woman who stayed regrets her decision. To those returning at this time, she suggests they do not: “To paraphrase Sheriff Ramsey, bring enough resources…..to last a week. If you can’t do that, then get back in your car and get the hell out. It’s not fun. We have no power. It’s hot. We’re rationing ice, and the water is brown out of the tap…..We wouldn’t stay again.”

My friend called me again this morning. Continues to be impressed with 801 and Bourbon Street. Air conditioning, ice and free food. Tells me the same person owns both establishments.

He recommended I not return yet. Very little power, no water, little gasoline, sewer problems continue, the smell/stench abominable, air thick with humidity, ATM machines covered, etc.

He told me I misspoke in yesterday’s blog re roadside debris. Could be seen all the way to Cudjoe Key, not Islamorada. From Cudjoe to Key West, merely bent trees.

US 1 opened for residents and business people all the way to Key West 7 this morning. Traffic heavy. Flat tires frequent.

US 1 has only one checkpoint. At Florida City.

Side roads apparently a problem. There are 21 side road checkpoints between Marathon and Key West due to unsafe conditions.

Someone reported on Facebook this morning 2 accidents already on US 1. One of the accidents a head on. One person dead. I have not been able to verify this information.

My admonition. Drive carefully. Do not speed. An extra half hour in getting to Key West will make no difference.

A personal calamity. Pisses me off.

I have a debit card with Bank of America. About four days before I left Key West to avoid Irma, I received a letter from Bank of America advising some one got into a series of card numbers. They were issuing new cards and I should receive one by the 14th. To use it when received. Ok to use old card in the meantime.

Hurrying to leave Key West, I gave the card no thought. Know I did not receive the new card as of the date I left.

Took Jean and Joe and my fellow evacuees to dinner last night. First time I have trued to use the card since 9/3. Card no good. The recorded wording something to the effect my number not registered with them. I tried every which way to get a human to speak with. No luck.

I had other cards to pay for the dinner.

Figured I would run over to a Bank of America tomorrow morning to get a temporary card. No Bank of Americas in Alabama.

I’m doing good!

I cannot talk to a human bank person till Monday morning during bank working hours on the phone.

I have a feeling I will be returning to Key West at some point this week without the card.

Suppose I needed the card? Suppose it was the only card I had? Suppose I was facing a 1,000 mile drive back to Key West without a card for gas and a motel one night?

In view of Irma, someone at the bank end should have made the decision to keep the old cards good at least till the end of the month. It had to be obvious not all would have received the new card before escaping Irma.

Robert and Ally’s dog Jake a Jack Terrier mix. Looks and acts like a Jack Terrier. Took a while, but we finally bonded.

Joanna is an evacuee staying with the Thornton’s, also. Johanna is a manager at the Audubon House. She has a Jack Terrier mix. Ralphie. Yesterday, I was sitting in a chair watching television and he jumped on my lap. Stayed. I rubbed his head, back and tummy of course.

Ralphie and I are bonded. He follows me around. Makes me play with him.

I live and learn. Teddy Roosevelt was fond of Jack Terriers. The White House had a rat problem. Jack Terriers are the natural enemy of rats. Roosevelt had several brought into the White House to live. It was the end of the rat problem.

Enjoy your Sunday!


Irma an experience! No question about it!

Not just the hurricane itself. The peripheral, the tangents. The whole picture.

Dinner the big event of the day for we evacuees at the Thornton home in Birmingham. A lengthy telephone call from a Key West friend this morning and other information I have obtained re Irma.

There is another world besides Irma. Time for me to begin a return to it. Slowly. ergo, I will write about a couple of non Irma items.

The  friend who made it back to Key West telephoned this morning. Key West not yet ready for people to return. Not unless they can do with out electric power, sewers, food, and gasoline. Which means as a practical matter, no air conditioning, toilet flushing, eating, cars to drive, and working generators.

I start with this morning’s phone call.

He and a lady friend ran off to Boston. Made their reservations to return to Fort Lauderdale. Plane reservations honored. $99 deal when made. Airline honored the price, also.

They had a hotel reservation in Lauderdale made a week ago. Honored, no gouging.

People trying to return to the Keys who do not have reservations have difficulty getting a room. The hotel permitted them to sleep in their cars in the hotel garage.

My friend rented a car to drive to Key West. No gouging here either.

Florida City the re-entry point. They attempted re-entry yesterday. His lady friend is a nurse and medical emergency trained. She has an identification card to that effect. She was going down to help. She was a go. My friend had nothing.They let him through because he was driving her.

The roads clear and repaired all the way to Key West. From Florida City to Islamorada, debris stacked on side of road and in the center. Anything that could float or be blown. More refrigerators than anything else. Many boats, also.

From Islamorada to Key West, no debris visible anywhere. The trees were bent from the wind. Items did not fly around. Wind significantly less than elsewhere. A reason why Key West missed the brunt of the storm. Fifteen miles closer and Key West would have been like Cudjoe Key and Big Pine.

In Key West itself, little property damage. Many trees down, however.

My friend owns a home in Key West. Very minimal damage to the outside of his home. None inside, except the house smelled big time. He opened the windows to get the smell out. His pool water was black. Trees in the pool.

Adding to the smell was the fact he did not clean out the refrigerator and freezer before he left.

Few gas stations open. In and on the way to Key West. In Key West, certain gas stations were pumping gasoline from the gas trucks. Not going through the pump.

The two businesses who appeared prepared for Irma were the primary gay bars. Bourbon Street and 801.

He enjoyed the evening with a friend at Bourbon Street. They had air conditioning, alcohol, food and ice. The air probably provided by large generators. The ice delivered.

He told me a large truck showed up in front of Bourbon Street. Dumped bags of ice at the front door. Then went across the street to 801 and did the same thing.

Curfew is from dusk to dawn. Bourbon Street locked its doors at dusk and was not bothered by the authorities.

End of the friend report.

Since the end of the call, I have learned other things which change or may change certain portions of my friend’s report. His report through last night. What follows from this morning.

Two people have died and 10 injured as a result of Irma in Key West.

Gasoline. Continues to be scarce.

Sewer treatment facility functioning. Some house toilets backing up, however. Those that have water or a bucket of water are able to flush toilets. Water still a problem.

Power. Remains a problem. From the Seven Mile Bridge to Key West, only 7 percent have electric power. The upper Keys, 30 percent. The power people are giving special attention to Cudjoe and Big Pine which took the worst beating. Overall, there are 300 downed polls which take time to fix.

Airport. Still closed to commercial and general aviation flights. Expected to reopen tuesday for all flights.

Food. Old Publix opened for a few hours yesterday. Other Publix and Winn-Dixie in Key West remain closed. Publix in Big Pine opened only a few hours yesterday.

Evacuees. People like me. Though what I report is not how I feel. there is a rising tension being reported. Evacuees want to return to their Key West homes. In spite of the negatives I have reported. Believe officials too cautious. I do not want to get on the road till I have motel reservations where needed, know I can get gas all the way back. And when I get back, I have power, air conditiong, gasoline, food, etc.

Return date. Just heard US 1 to Key West opens tomorrow. People are being permitted to return even though things still not as they should be.

Some other bits of information.

Key West is located in Monroe County. Monroe County has one of the most stringent building codes in the United States.

Florida’s citrus industry took a beating. The loss statewide is estimated at 50-75 percent.

Re-entry stickers are being forged.

A rumor has spread that a truck was found in the Keys full of dead bodies. Not true.

Now to last night.

Dinner at the Thornton’s again. Two guests. Dan and Paula. Not related or connected in any fashion. Both Birmingham residents.

Dan an IT person for a hospital conglomerate that has hospitals from Birmingham south to Broward County. He visits Key West 1-3 times a year. Is a good friend of Jean and Joe.

Dan provided the meal. Bags of Mexican food. The dining room table could not hold all the food.

Wine consumption remained consistent. Tequila added. I missed the tequila. I was tired and went to bed early.

Paula joined us. A friend of the Thornton’s. Lovely and charming. Never been to Key West.

Dinner tonight at an Italian restaurant. My treat.

I was going to write of other things. The Irma report took too many words. Already over a thousand. I will save the non Irma news for another time.

Enjoy your day!









June 6, 1944. D-Day. Allied troops landed on the beaches of Normandy. American, British, and Canadian. One hundred fifty five thousand strong. Within 11 months, Germany would surrender.

This past weekend, Trump and company publicized this week would be a national tour by Trump to share with the people his infrastructure plan. To privatize infrastructure.

I support infrastructure remediation. I do not support privatization.

Instead of infrastructure, Trump appeared in the White House yesterday morning telling us about his plan for privatization of air controllers. I figured tuesday would find Trump into infrastructure.

Apparently not to be. At least not today. Trump news this morning says he wants to work on healthcare and the budget first.

Why the switch?

Aqua first last night. Tom Luna and Rich Dery singing as only they can. Destiny their guest performer. A knock out voice, also.

Liz at the bar. With girl friends Josefina and Mary. First time i have seen Liz in a few weeks. She is still with cane. Looking questionable whether her second hip surgery worked.

Photographer Larry Blackburn at the bar. We exchanged hellos and shook hands.

Then down the block to Bourbon Street. Wanted to hear Bria sing. No Bria. Discovered she has left for New Hampshire for the summer.

I was disappointed. Not for log, however.

Rocky Bottom was filling in for Bria. A terrific entertainer!

Bourbon Street is a gay bar. One of the top ones in Key West. Rocky Bottom, a female. Kept the guys entertained. Her tip bucket filled up rapidly.

Rocky Bottom sings to a different tune. A little wild. One song had fuck every other word. She sang the tune not sensuously. Hard and tough!

Joe Schroeder opened Bourbon Street twenty plus years ago. He was looking to establish a Beads, Boys and Booze operation. He succeeded big time.

Stopped at the VFW for a bite to eat on the way home. The VFW is open to the public. Prior military involvement not a requirement for admission.

I was at one end of the bar. A mature couple came in and sat at the other end. About a dozen people at the bar.

The new guy bought for the bar. He knew no one. His first time in the VFW. His name Mark and he was from Michigan.

On my way out, I stopped to thank him and shake his hand. He said, “Thank you for your service.”

I never served.

My meal was meat loaf. Mother’s cooking.

You can tell the humidity is heavy. Glasses fog up immediately when you get out of an air conditioned car.

Tomorrow at 10 am at the Custom House, Dr. Cori Convertino is giving a walking lecture telling the story of Henry Flagler’s Overseas Railway. Dr. Convertino is the KWAHS curator who devoted months putting the Flagler Railway exhibition together.

Coomey appears before a Congressional Committee thursday. Too much hype. Expectations running high. Too much may be expected. Certain of his testimony will be classified. Additionally, Special Counsel Mueller may limit what Coomey may reveal.

We shall see.

The emblem of the Democratic Party is the donkey. From whence did it come?

Andrew Jackson was running for President. The Party’s mascot at the time was the Rooster. Shades of Key West 175 years later.

Jackson’s opposition used a play on Jackson’s name to make fun of Jackson and his followers: Jackasses. Donkey in due course became the more tasteful replacement for Jackasses.

The Rooster did not completely die. The Democrat Rooster remains to this day on ballots in some states.

Tonight, my podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Usually, I list topics to be discussed in the evening in the tuesday morning blog. Not this week. With Trump out there, things change hourly.

The past few weeks, I have spent my tuesday afternoons adjusting my topics to fit breaking news. Today, I am waiting till one to formulate tonight’s program.

Enjoy your day!







When it rains, it pours…..

Donna and Terri have been having a rough time of it. Battling Terri’s cancer.

Donna got the flu shot this year. Not the time to taunt the gods. Terri and the flu would not be a good combination.

Donna has the flu! Big time! The worst from her perspective. Strong coming from Donna who has had some heavy illnesses in the course of her life.

Donna has a type of influenza A. One of the influenza’s protected by the flu shot. Hit her New Year’s eve. Twice in the hospital yesterday. Temperature 103.

Donna says it is death. Even getting a little better is in the death area.

The flu shot does not always work. Some still come down from the flu. Not from the shot itself. You cannot get the flu from the shot itself. The virus injected is dead.

Hang in there Donna. Terri, stay away from Donna.

Spent yesterday afternoon preparing for tonight’s podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

A major topic is the Theft of Social Security. The Fund would be sound if the government stopped taking surplus funds out every year. Presently, the United States owes Social Security just under $3 trillion.

You will find the truth interesting. It will anger you as well.

More robot discussion. China is on the way to replacing in excess of 600,000 employees at one of its plants with robots. Also, further exploration of poor veteran care at Veterans’ Hospitals. The story of a veteran who died with maggots in his wounds.

Plus, a Texas police officer who sexually assaulted a 13 year old girl, a Mexican scheduled for deportation and/or removal 19 times who raped a 13 year old girl on a bus, the Miami cop who was fired for bragging the black neighborhood was a good place for gun practice, the EPA intentionally hiding radiation in water at a number of sites, the story of a 13 year old boy paralyzed from a chicken pox vaccine, and more.

Aqua big last night! Tons of people. The season ongoing.

Many friends. Sheila, Jean and Joe Thornton, Stephanie, Liz, Mary and Josefina. Tom and Rick doing the Dueling Bartenders thing.

Made two new friends. Anna and Everett. Owners of Anna’s Cabana. A lovely 40 foot power vessel. They live on the boat when in Key West. It is presently docked near A&B Lobster House.

Anna is the Captain and Everett the first mate.

You know who is boss in that family!

They told me they were steady dinner customers at Berlin’s. We hope to run into each other.

An Alabama night. Anna and Everett Alabama residents. As are Joe and Jean. Anna and Everett plan on being at the game in Tampa on January 9. Joe and Jean will be gut wrenched here in Key West.

In distant past years, there was a drop off of tourists immediately following New Year’s day. Not in recent years. Not this year.

I had difficulty finding a parking place near Aqua.

Liz and the ladies left early to have dinner at Virgilio’s.

Liz and her friends like to whoop it up. Spent New Year’s eve at the bar at Aqua from 5:30 to 11:00.

Then to Bourbon Street to her Bria sing. The best!

Tim and Scott at the bar. Enjoyed a couple of drinks with them. Friends of Donna and Terri. Know them from the Back Door.

They work for Bourbon Street, though not last night. They told me how busy New Year’s eve was. They were still tired.

Stopped at the street level bar/restaurant under Crabby Dick’s where Alex plays tuesday nights. Chatted with Alex and his wife. Met Alex’s brother who is vacationing here.

I was energized. Not tired enough to go home yet. Walked over to Virgilio’s to chat with Liz and friends.

Virgilio’s impressed me. A good 10 years since I had been there. A night club back then. Still a night club. However, a restaurant during dinning hours. The place was packed. Had there been room, I would have joined the ladies for dinner.

Dinner was at Outback. Easy. A cheeseburger. Watched the final minutes of the USC/Penn State Rose Bowl game. A tremendous finish! Just like pro ball. The last couple of minutes everything. USC won with a field goal in the final minute after intercepting a Penn State pass.

Somewhere along the way last night, Hard Rock Stadium  came into the talk.

When first built in 1987, it was the Joe Robbe Stadium. Joe Robbe was the first owner of the Miami Dolphins. He was also the prime mover in getting Joe Robbe Stadium built.

I was in Joe Robbe Stadium in 1987. For Super Bowl XXIII. The Stadium impressed me no end. Especially the elevators.

Think of the long almost vertical elevators at the Atlanta airport. Robbe Stadium had similar elevators. Multiple ones. Side by side. You rode up swiftly to your seat before the game. The elevators took you back to ground level after the game. All elevators were down only after the game.

When Robbe died in 1990, he left a $100 million estate.

Back in the early 1970s, I had a condominium at the Jockey Club in Miami. A private club. The place to be in the those days. Fun 24 hours a day.

Joe Robbe had a condo there also. Occasionally we would enjoy a drink together at the bar. A nice guy. Willie Shoemaker would join us on occasion. He lived at the Jockey Club, also.

Enjoy your day!



Busy day yesterday. Running around doing all kinds of tasks. Including Xmas shopping.

Do not get the impression I am buying a ton of gifts. Not. I am walking around trying to purchase the most thoughtful gift for the few I buy for.

So busy, I never had lunch. Which affected my evening activities.

I had a three pronged plan for last night. Aqua, Alex, and Bourbon Street. Only made Aqua.

Sheila at Aqua. Love her.

So too, Liz. And her friends Mary and Josefina. Joined them at the bar.

Liz dressed all in black. Dynamite!

I enjoyed three drinks with the ladies. They left for dinner at La Trattoria. I remained as it was too early for Alex.

Then my stomach started. Could not understand why. Finally realized that Louis had not stopped for lunch.

So much for Alex and Bourbon Street.

I started home. Knew I had to eat something. Bulk up. Figured 5 Guys would do it. It did. A cheeseburger and fries. I felt fine even before I finished the burger.

Tom and Rick singing at Aqua. A lot of Christmas carols. A lot of people. Twice the normal crowd. Obvious people starting to drift into Key West for a Christmas holiday.

Europeans and Asians included. Germans and Japanese primarily.

The Custom House tonight for its first special Christmas event. Music and holiday lights on the porch/promenade. The Custom House itself open to visitors. Should be good!

My podcast show tonight. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. A fast moving interesting and revealing half hour.

Topics include more on robots replacing workers, General Motors closing five factories for 1-3 weeks, China returning U.S.’s submarine drone, whether Russia’s Turkish ambassador being shot in Turkey an Archduke Ferdinand, purpose of the electoral College, two separate groups of pharmaceutical houses sued by government for price fixing and doctor bribing, and more. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your Day!



The Today In Keys History section of the Key West Citizen carried a brief comment re Robert Frost. To the effect that it had been announced on this date in 1934 that Robert Frost would spend the winter in Key West. His first visit.

Inquisitiveness tickled my fancy. Where did he stay? What did he do? Etc. Did a bit of research.

The winter of 1934 may have been Frost’s first visit, it was not his last. He returned in 1945. Spent every winter in Key West through 1960.

Jessie Porter’s home was a haven for writers. Daily visits. Sitting around and talking. Frost included.

Porter’s home was at 410 Caroline St. A garden cottage was located on the property. Frost leased the cottage during his 1945-1960 stays.

Porter’s home today is known as The Heritage House. It is listed as a National Literary Landmark.

Away from the Porter premises, Frost’s favorite place to hang out was the Casa Marina.

Spent yesterday afternoon preparing for tonight’s podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Topics off the wall! All kinds of interesting things happening. I will open with the alleged Russian hacking of the Democrats and the opposing views of the CIA and FBI.

Followed by Chinese factories making our Xmas toys under deplorable working conditions, pharmacy executives arrested for bribing doctors to recommend their pain killing drug, a black man arrested for DUI strapped into a chair and beaten by a police officer causing the black man to lose sight in one eye, Venezuela eliminating half its paper money, and more.

Aqua first last night. Liz and Mary there. Sat with them. Jean Thornton on the other side of the bar. Tom Luna, Rick and Traci entertaining.

Alex tapped me on the shoulder to say hello. His wife standing outside. Alex was playing across the street. I will have to stop in next week to hear him blow his horn.

Liz and Mary left for dinner at Antonia’s. I headed for Bourbon Street.

Berlin’s Bria sings monday and tuesday evenings at Bourbon Street. Went especially to hear her. As usual, outstanding.

Sitting at the bar next to me were Jen and Paul. Jen vacationing from Fargo, North Dakota. Paul a December snowbird for years.

Jen and I had an interesting conversation re Standing Rock. She lives where it all happened. I expected her to be sympathetic to the Sioux cause. She was not. She felt the Native Americans were making a lot out of nothing.


While the Polar Vortex is reaping havoc on the northwest, Key West weather has never been better. Mid 80s yesterday. Never hot. No humidity. Comfortable.

The Polar Vortex is expected to be felt over the keys early next week. Very cold weather. Significant drop in temperature.

The war between the community and the Lower Keys Medical Center continues. An attorney hired by the community group reported that the hospital board had no authority to act and that the legal paperwork involved years ago was binding.

The battle will continue. I don’t understand why the community group does not take a direct assault on the company operating the hospital for insufficient care, over billing, etc.

Last but not least. My new streaming show will not debut thursday as planned. The best laid plans of mice and men…..

Only one problem. Described yesterday. It will not be resolved by thursday.

Enjoy your day!