Another school shooting. Yesterday, Parkland High School. Located in Broward County Florida. The 19th school shooting  this year in the United States. Today, only February 15. Means 19 school shootings in 46 days. Seventeen killed yesterday. More injured.

The blame lies primarily with the NRA and our elected politicians. The politicos are owned by the NRA.

Children die because politicians are interested in keeping their seats.


The extremist NRA lobbies. Elected officials are subservient to them because of the power and money the NRA has. Both of which could be used to defeat them if they dared to oppose the NRA.

Our elected representatives today reflect man at his worst. Money being more important than lives.

The past year saw politicians with a new line following a mass shooting. A line I would guarantee has to have been formulated by the NRA. When asked what the politician thought, what could be done, etc.,  the response always is not the time to talk about it.

If not immediately following a mass shooting, when?

Appreciate the amount of NRA money being spent on Congressional people alone. The New York Times set forth such information on October 4, 2017. I take from the article the top three US Senators who received the most in contributions from the NRA.

John Mc Cain #1. $7,700,000. Richard Burr #2. $6,900,000. Ray Blunt #3. $4,500,000.

The numbers say it all. The truth lies within them.

Big night yesterday. Actually started in the afternoon.

The Custom House first for the St. Valentine’s Day mass kiss-in. My date was Catherine. The kiss-in scheduled precisely for 6pm. One thousand expected. Five hundred couples kissing.

We got there at 4:30. The crowd still small. We knew we could not stay till 6 because of another event. We sat on the steps and chatted till 5:15.

Free rum beginning at 5. We did not get any. By 5, the line was long. The Spectrelles singing. Couples kissing when ever they wanted. The woman slung over on the man’s arm.

We left, but not without kissing. Our first. Immediately turned into 3 or 4. Led to more kissing later in the evening. Made me wonder why we had not done this on previous dates.

Then to the Sons and Daughters of Italy St. Valentine’s day dinner and meeting.

The dinner outstanding. Lasagna! Followed by a huge heart shaped chocolate cake covered deep in frosting.

I cheated. Only the third time since November 27. The night before, I craved cake. Any kind. I am on a low carb diet. The craving was satisfied last night. The lasagna an added bonus.

A night cap was in order. We were off to the Chart Room. John bartending.

Lovely Nikki cried out…..Key West Lou! We had never met before. Nikki is from Atlanta. Reads this blog every day. Thank you, Nikki!

Nikki and her husband Russ are from Atlanta. Vacationing. Have been doing so in Key West annually for many years. They were married on Smathers Beach in 2007.

Nikki is a paralegal. Husband Russ, a marina manager.

They were enjoying Key West with Atlanta friends Tatiana and Doug.

Permit an observation. Both Nikki and Tatiana extremely beautiful women.

I found Tatiana’s name different. Special. She explained she was Brazilian. Tatiana however not Brazilian. Tatiana was born sometime around the 1980 Winter Olympics. There was a Russian skater named Tatiana that impressed her mother. Ergo, the name Tatiana.

Tatiana is a nurse practitioner. Proud of her work and the responsibility that goes with it.

Doug into transportation logistics.

Four wonderful people! Hope I run into them again.

There is a new musical in Key West. Undying Love. Tickets hard to come by.

Described as an off beat musical. It is the story of Key West’s Count Carl von Cosel whose love Elena Milagro de Hoyos had died. He stole her body from her grave. Kept Elena with him for several years till discovered. In his bed. Preserved with wax.


Made into a musical, however. And from all I hear, a tremendous success.

The Battleship Maine blew up in Havana harbor this day in 1898. Two hundred sixty American sailors killed. Led to the Spanish American War.

Key West has two connections to the tragedy.

The first involves many of the sailors who died. They are interred in the Key West Cemetery. Duly honored every year.

The other is the location of the formal hearing to determine the cause of the explosion. The US Court of Naval Inquiry met at what is today’s Custom House. Then a newly constructed federal building.

The stock market crashed last week. I predicted it. Though not an economist, being 82 I have lived through several and could sense this one coming.

I am going to stick my neck out. The crash is not yet complete. There will be another this year, worse.

Enjoy your day!



Blog writing is interesting. Takes me to all kinds of places. Yesterday, world events. Today, primarily Key West. Some days, a mixture.

Whatever moves me at the moment.

Lunched at Hogfish yesterday with Guy de Boer. Guy publishes KONK Life. He has graciously agreed to run a photo of me and my Irma book in KONK Life. The whole front page!

Guy picked Hogfish for lunch. He wanted to get a photo of me and the shrimp boats together. Why shrimp boats, I do not know. My connection with shrimp boats next to nil.

The nil has a bit of substance.

First, the song. Shrimp Boats. A 1951 hit sung by the popular vocalist Jo Stafford. It was co-written by her husband Paul Weston.

The words come back every time I see a shrimp boat: Shrimp boats is a-comin’ / Their sails are in sight / Shrimp boats is a-comin’ / There’s dancin’ tonight…..

I was 15 years old the first time I heard Shrimp Boats. We were visiting family in the Bronx. I was outside standing in front of a then typical New York City candy store with a bunch of other teenagers. The location, 141st Street.

The song came out of a radio in the candy store. The others began humming and quietly singing the tune. I had never heard it before. The tune was catchy. Later in high school, I danced to ShrimpBoats.

Rarely thought of the tune after that till the mid 1990’s when I started visiting Key West. There were shrimp boats in Key West!

I learned that when you saw tons of them on the horizon off South Roosevelt Boulevard, they were hurrying in to avoid a coming storm. That was the moment. That was the picture. Such gave meaning to Shrimp boats is a-comin’ / Their sails are in sight.

Me, Irma and the shrimp boats will appear in KONK Life in the next week or two.

Last night the Chart Room. A good time. John bartending. David came in. Good conversation.

A while later, Jean Thornton’s two visiting sisters arrived with their men.

The Chart Room was off and running!

Stopped at Tavern ‘n Town on the way home. Another prime rib. I lost 5 pounds in the past 10 days. Why, I do not know. I have been on this diet since November 27. Lost 10 pounds the first two weeks. Not another pound till 10 days ago. Were it not that I was losing inches, I would have given up long ago.

Not the blind leading the blind. But, sort of. My lesbian wives Donna and Terri left yesterday by car for Tampa. Terri to undergo two days of serious testing at the cancer facility that replaced all her bone marrow and blood.

The tests important.

Donna broke her left shoulder a few days ago. Her left arm is wrapped tight to her chest. She is driving. Terri cannot drive more than a 100 miles at a time. They have broken the trip down so it will take 3 days to reach Tampa.

I mentioned in my tuesday night podcast Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou that the election of a person such as Trump served as encouragement for other crazies to run for public office.

It is happening in Missouri.

Senator Claire McCaskill is running for reelection. The word is she has a tough race ahead.

Several seek the Republican nomination to run against her. One is Courtland Sykes.

What I am about to relate was printed in a St. Louis newspaper in September. An interview. Sykes ran the interview on Facebook a few days ago where I found it.

If he is the Republican candidate, it will be a battle of the sexes.

Sykes is not married. He is engaged.

Following is what he expects from his fiance when she is his wife and his thoughts regarding women.

  1. When he arrives home in the evening, he expects his dinner on the table at 6. Prepared by his wife.
  2. Their daughters must learn to cook. He wants them raised to be traditional homemakers and family wives.
  3. His home is to be a Norman Rockwell world.
  4. Feminism is radical. Its definition crazy.
  5. Women have “snake filled heads.”
  6. He does not want his daughters growing up to be “career obsessed banshees” who forego home life and children to become “manophobic hell-beat feminist she devils.”
  7. Hillary Clinton’s loss a clear indication that radical feminists have been defeated.
  8. He claims he is fully supportive of women and he did not believe his statements demeaning to them.
  9. He conceded some women have amazing careers. He complimented them. The examples he gave of two such women were Kellyanne Conway and Sarah Huckabee Sanders. Said they should be celebrated.
  10. Big media. Big media has become “too many dumb blondes and too many leg dangles.”
  11. Feminism represents the “radical drug and communal happy-visioned 1960’s.”
  12. He supported and defended Roy Moore.

Enjoy your day!




The man who would not die. His name, Rasputin.

History tells us he was a con man supreme, a self-proclaimed holy person, one who caused a royal dynasty to fall. Romanov Russia.

Rasputin helped bring revolution to Russia. He made possible the birth of Communist Russia.

Born Grigory Efinovich Rasputin. To a peasant family. At some point, he underwent a religious conversion. Proclaimed himself a healer.

Czar Nicholas II and Czarina Alexandra’s son Alexi was a hemophiliac. Rasputin seemed to have the ability to stop Alexi’s bleeding. The year 1908. From that time forward, Rasputin was an accepted friend, confidant, and adviser to Nicholas and Alexandra. Especially, Alexandra. History believes she had an ongoing affair with Rasputin.

He became a dark influence on the royal family.

All of Russia disliked Rasputin. Nobles, church orthodoxy, and peasants alike. He was constantly drunk, a womanizer, an evil in the Romanov homes. He was concerned not with the best interests of Russia. His concern at all times was his image. Some what like Trump today.

A group of Russian nobles were eager to end Rasputin’s influence over the royal family. They murdered him the night and early morning of December 29-30, 1916.

Even at the time of his death, Rasputin exhibited messianic powers. He was a man who would not die.

The nobles laced his food and drink with cyanide. No effect. They then shot him at close range. He revived and tried to escape. The nobles shot him again. He continued to live.

The nobles finally tied Rasputin up and tossed him into a freezing river.

That did it!

The nobles killed Rasputin. Rasputin killed Romanov Russia. The peasants in due course revolted. In 1922, Soviet Russia was born.

Rasputin put into motion a series of events which even to today affect the world. U.S./Russian relations an example.

Last night, a lovely evening. A charming companion. Catherine.

We dined at Berlin’s. Guy de Boer sitting next to me at the bar. Berlin’s the busiest I have ever seen. Makes sense. Christmas week the busiest tourist time of the year for Key West.

I enjoyed a prime rib again. Terrific! Just the meat and au jus sauce. Part of the Atkins diet.

I am into my fifth week of the diet. Only cheated Christmas eve and Christmas day. I should have lost 15-20 pounds by now. I lost 10 pounds the first week. Not an ounce more since.


I am thinner. Into shirts and shorts one size smaller. I need the pounds off, however. The scale speaks the truth!

Worry not, I will continue with the diet.

Big event tomorrow at noon. The Annual Dachshund Walk. Hundreds will congregate at the Courthouse on Whitehead to watch the parade.

Only in Key West!

Trump upsets me this morning. I saw the news that a small group had protested in Iran. Trump announced to the world how terrible the Iranian government was, good luck to the protesters, etc.

Trump does not know when to keep his mouth shut and when to speak.

The world is dividing into two camps. Just as Germany and the Allies did prior to World War II. Iran and Russia are friends. The U.S. and Saudi Arabia friends on the other side. Trump should not encourage further division. He has yet to learn it is better to make friends than enemies.

I wonder how Trump would have felt if after Charlottesville, Iranian and Russian leaders spoke out telling the world the U.S. was bad, good luck to the protesters, etc. Trump would have shouted back that each country should mind its own business.

Trump continues to be a growing menace to the health and security of the U.S.

The weather started turning last night. Today’s high projected at 73. The low tonight 64. Cold for us. Warm to my friends up north suffering in low teen freezing cold and tons of snow.

It will continue cold for a few days. Long pants, sweat shirts, sweaters, etc. for us. For me, the heat on tonight.

Enjoy your day!



I see it coming! they are going to “fix” South Roosevelt Boulevard. A fixing not required.

South Roosevelt Boulevard works well. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! the recommended move from 4 lanes to 2 is not needed. The wide sidewalk running along the beach is more than sufficient for walkers, bikers, etc.

I walked the walk for years. almost every day. different hours. Never had a problem regarding too many people.

What is involved here is change for the sake of change. The lets do something mentality where nothing need be done.

I fear the decision has already been made. I am aware there are public hearings ahead, etc. the players at the Florida Department of Transportation want it. Certain City officials want it.

The terms being bandied around sound of something new and magnanimous. Like corridor study, repurposing, optimal configuration, and future reconstruction.

It has been reported that South Roosevelt being redone is the final improvement recommended by the Project Development and Environmental Study.

I did not even know a change was contemplated till a couple of months ago. This Project development thing makes me suspect it has been out there for years.

It is time for the City Commission to stand up and do the right thing. Instead of succumbing. Commissioner Kaufman has already indicated the reconstruction sounds good. Time for him to move over on the side of the people. Most of decisions thus far not the best.

My first stop last night was Office Max. I need earphones for the computer. Many earphones. Blew my mind. Too complicated. the sales person was no help. she knew less than me.

I bought nothing. called Sloan and told her to buy the right one.

Why the earphones?

I soon will be doing another show. Yes, one on top of what I do already.

It will be a streaming in effect on You Tube. Several times a day. Roughly 30-60 seconds. One topic/issue. As the day progresses and I see something worth mentioning, I will sit down and get it out. Easy. No big deal.

I will be doing the show from my desk in my bedroom. You will be able to see and hear me. The shows will be archived so you can go on at any time and catch up.

Once set up, you will be able to find me by Louis Petrone. Key West Lou did not work because I am already archiving my tuesday night podcast show on You Tube under the Key West Lou designation.

The show’s actual title is Louis Petrone Says…..

I will let you know soon the actual date the show will commence.

I may even wear a baseball cap on occasion.

Stopped at Duval Square to view Larry Blackburn’s photo exhibit. Spectacular!

Larry also has a hat and Ecuadorian store at 510 Fleming. Interesting items available.

Finally, Berlin’s. Dinner at the bar. No Bria. She was in a wedding. The food continues to be great. I enjoyed lobster and mushroom risotto.

A group came in. Ordered drinks. One of the men asked for…..Diet. The bartender looked at him. The patron responded to the blank look…..This is how I work out. Diet! Meaning diet soda, of course.

Great diet!

Christmas Parade tonight. The best! I will watch at Don’s Place and at the County Office Building. First with friends and then to join the grandkids.

Syracuse/North Florida at 4 today. No comment, other than I suspect Syracuse will win. Not sure these days.

Enjoy your day!



It is hard to have a bad night in Key West. Last night was extra special.

It was the company, food, and ambiance.

I was at Berlin’s for dinner with Donna and Terri. Celebrating their anniversary. The event was two weeks ago. The party had to be delayed a bit. Terri was diagnosed with cancer.

Terri has just completed two weeks of chemo. Her last treatment was wednesday. She said she felt well enough to go out last night. Glad she did. She enjoyed herself immensely.

Shane and Gage bartending. The lovely Bria entertaining.

Lynda and Bob Frechette showed up. They were having diner at A&B. Joined us at the bar after their dinner. Two of the nicest people in Key West. Unquestionably.

A lovely young lady came up to me. Striking. Could not recall who she was. I’m George, she said. We hugged and talked.

George is a female. Through and through. Known as George in Key West. Whether her real name, I do not know.

George is Lisa’s friend. George bartends at Hogs Breath. The past 20 years.

I have only seen George 4-5 times in my life. First time was Lisa’s wedding 14 years ago. We met at the martini bar at the reception. Enjoyed a couple of martinis each while chatting. She looks today as she looked then.

I do not recall what we talked about. I believe she does. A mystery surrounds the conversation. She has never shared it with me.

I was glad to see her again. I have made a mental note to stop at Hogs Breath some evening to see her again.

My yesterday began with a 11:15 business meeting. Then a haircut with Lori. My appointment was wednesday. I forgot. Fortunately, I was able to get  in yesterday.

I am a quick haircut. All of 5 minutes. Number 1 on the electric  razor. My hair gone.

Yesterday was Lori’s last day on Southard. Beginning monday, her business Blown Away will be housed in a new building on White Street. Across from Sandy’s.

Stopped for lunch at the Cuban Coffee Queen. I had not been there for three weeks. Could not eat at the Coffee Queen while dieting.

As to the diet, it is ended. I stopped wednesday night.

I am disciplined till I am disciplined no more. I need to see success on the scale. Lost 8 pounds the first week. Only 3 the following two weeks. Not worth the self denial involved.

I am watching my eating, however. Last night at Berlin’s, I had a small salad and two stone crabs. Plus, three drinks. It’s the booze that does it. Wasted calories.

It is amazing how much better I feel since off the diet. I feel good!

I ordered a cheese toast and Cuban coffee. The cheese toast left me feeling heavy. Understandable. Cuban bread is made with pig lard.

Dinner with Dee tonight. Excellent company. She does not know it yet, but I am taking her to the vegetarian restaurant Cafe on Southard. I am not a veggie. However some one in my party when I was last there enjoyed mussels. I love mussels. And the broth made for bread dunking afterwards.

The weather continues to be perfect. Eighty by day. Seventy by night. No humidity. No need for air conditioning day or night.

Don and Chris have returned! Have not seen them yet. Received an e-mail form Don asking if I wanted to watch the Syracuse game with him tuesday night. Does not work for me. I do my radio show tuesday evenings.

Syracuse has basketball and football games today.

Playing South Carolina in basketball. Both teams undefeated. Syracuse a 6 point favorite.

The last football game of the season with Pitt. Pitt a 24 point favorite. I am glad the football season ends today. Syracuse has won only 4 games.

Now for Installment 22 of my rendition of Wright Langley’s History of the Key West Rotary.

It was May 20, 1950. Armed Forces Day. A parade down Duval.

The Rotary sponsored a float. The float highlighted Rotary International. Four lovely young Key West ladies on the float. clad in full length white dresses.

The ladies would not be so attired today. Not that they would be dressed risqué. Simply, less clothing is worn by all today.

The Korean War ongoing in the early 1950s. Our first war since World War II. America still concerned for their military. Vietnam would later change the feeling.

A December 1951 meeting was held at St. Paul’s Parrish Hall.

Retired Major Earl Dillon appealed to the Rotarians to donate blood. They were running out of blood on the front lines in Korea. The need desperate.

So desperate, front line soldiers were donating blood for their fallen companions.

I was in high school during the Korean War. Never knew of the blood problem.

Dillon had a son serving in Korea. Dillon read from a letter received from his son: “This is no police action. This is war!”

Rotary responded immediately. A special committee was formed to organize the blood donations. The Rotary gave mightily.

Enjoy your day!




Insanity sometimes prevails in the halls of government. Change for the sake of change. Decisions without basis in fact made.

I am talking about the most recent suggestion by the State Department of Transportation to turn South Roosevelt Boulevard into 2 or 3 lanes rather than the present 4.

Justification is it will make room for cars, bikers, vendors and walkers.

No basis for the justification.

Traffic moves easily along South Roosevelt Boulevard. Parking sufficient. Probably the only place in Key West. Vendors few and those still here have plentiful space.

As to walkers and bicycles, who in Key West has more room than on the very wide walk running along the ocean. Whenever crowded, not crowded.

A new play has developed in the United States. Redoing roadways . Called “lane repurposing.”

We do not need lane repurposing along the ocean. Especially at Smathers Beach. There are many areas within Key West that do, however. The State should do its lane repurposing in tosoe places.

Again, the State wants to make driving, parking, bicycle riding and walking easier and less crowded. There are no problems on South Roosevelt Boulevard!

The City Commission is involved. Properly so. Except certain of its members are idiots re the issue. Mayor Cates and Commissioner Kaufman like the idea. They are of the opinion congestion exists for bicycles and walkers. I ask both of these gentleman…..When was the last time you walked South Roosevelt Boulevard? Rode a bike there?

Try it! Neither bicycle nor pedestrian will inhibit your walk or bike ride.

Kaufman is beginning to bother me. I do not know him. He is an attorney who successfully ran for his Commission seat. He is also an agent of change. Perhaps even an unintentional trouble maker. It seems to be his nature.

Change for the sake of change is of no value. A new idea is not necessarily a good idea.

Let this be Kaufman’s first and last term as Commissioner. He should return to the law and screw up the judicial system.

I fell last night! Again! Did a number on my body. My head took a beating in the process. A bump the size of a quarter on the back. Oozing blood. My head continues to hurt this morning.

As usual, I was not looking where I was walking. I was stepping up the one step to my front porch. Neither looked nor lifted my foot enough.

Dinner last night was with neighbor Andrew. Andrew owns the MTV house across the water from me. He is in for a few days from his present home in Zürich. He called and said lets go to dinner. I tried to back off because of my diet. To no avail

Andrew took me to his favorite restaurant. The Cafe on Southard across from Bank of America. The vegetarian restaurant. I am not a vegetarian. I did enjoy however a piece of mahi mahi.

No alcohol. I am still on my diet.

This morning makes one week on the diet. I cheated not. Lost 8 pounds. All water, I am sure. But 8 pounds is 8 pounds. I continue on the diet this week.

Rotary reminds me of the tune Christian Soldiers. Onward Christian soldiers…..

The Rotary took hold world wide as well as in Key West. Its purpose to serve, to do good. The local has been so performing for more than 100 years.

The Key West Rotary considers all issues. They walk away from nothing. Seek knowledge from every source.

This is installment 13. It concerns the subject matter of the September 8, 1932 luncheon meeting.

The United States was deep in depression in 1932. The market crashed. Three years earlier.

William W. Demeritt. Chairman of the Monroe County Unemployment Relief Committee. He gave a report concerning the state of the relief program. Unemployment benefits for those out of work.

By the end of August 1932, the numbers of unemployed were as follows. White men, 473 married, 267 single. Colored men, 180 married, 83 single. Women, white 89 and colored 114.

Mouths to feed. Mouths fed.

Amazing that the statistics had to be divided between white and colored. The Civil War had ended 57 years earlier.

Enjoy your day!


The Key West Citizen showed a partial picture of the submarine USS Key West front page this morning. The replica was part of the Veterans Day Parade yesterday.

The picture tickled my interest. I researched the USS Key West.

There have been three USS Key Wests over the years. The first was a steamer during the Civil War. The second a World War II frigate. The third the submarine represented in the parade.

The submarine was launched in 1985. The vessel has spent its entire career in the Pacific. Remains active.

I have been dieting since monday. Satisfied so far. However, I have had to control myself. Have remained in every evening. As explained in an earlier blog, I have to avoid the near occasions of sin for me. Food and drink. I am weak.

Tonight, I am going out. I miss people. Need to have their company. Need to converse.

Syracuse basketball began this week. Syracuse beat Colgate 83-55. Not to get excited about. The first several games each season are played against teams of lesser quality. Warm up games.

The lesser talented schools come to the Carrier Dome knowing they will be beaten. Not a problem for the school’s administration.

The superior college pays a stipend to the less able one to take the beating. Dollars sufficiently significant to induce the lesser talented school to participate.

Syracuse football today. Against North Carolina State. Each team 4-5. North Carolina a seven point favorite.

Syracuse may lose. Our extremely talented sophomore  quarterback Eric Dungey may not play. He was injured in last week’s Clemson game.

On this day in history 1948, 25 convicted Japanese war criminals were sentenced, Seven received death sentences. One, Tojo. The trial took 30 months.

One of my law school professors was Robert Miller. I took two of his classes. Criminal Law and Evidence.

Miller had an interesting background. He was one of the defense attorneys in the trial. He occasionally peppered our classes with stories from trial.

In the 1970s and 1980s, I visited La Costa frequently. A health spa. I called it a fat farm. People went there to lose weight and tone up their bodies. Easy to do on 800 calories a day and a 9-5 exercise regimen.

La Costa is located outside San Diego.

Movie stars took advantage of the program. People like William Holden, Rodney Dangerfield, and Arlene Dahl. Repeat customers, we became friends.

William Holden died this day in 1981. I got to know him well during our visits. Alcohol was a no no. We would sit together in a quiet lounge drinking Perrier and smoking cigars in the evening.

Holden was a gentleman. Water volleyball was one of the exercise activities. Twice a day. Holden was always the first out of the pool to retrieve a ball.

He was short. Surprisingly so. Like 5′ 6″ at best. Maybe 1 or 2 inches less. I asked how he always looked so tall in the movies. Always equal to or taller than the ladies he would kiss. He laughed.

Back in those days, bottled Coca Cola came in wood cases. Cases would be stacked one upon the other. He stood on the cases, thereby conveying his tall appearance.

The USS Constitution is the oldest U.S. vessel in service. The Constitution had two contacts with Key West.

The story begins with this installment 11 based on Key West Rotary history.

At the December 31, 1931 luncheon meeting of the Key West Rotary, Commander Louis G. Gulliver was guest speaker. He was the commanding officer of the Constitution.

The Constitution had arrived that morning in Key West. It was located at the foot of Duval Street.

The Constitution had been reconditioned at a cost of $12 million. Earlier in 1931, the Constitution began a three year 90 port visit.

That morning alone in Key West, over 500 people had already visited the Constitution.

The Constitution was a wood hulled three masted frigate. Long in history even in 1931. George Washington had named the Constitution. Her first engagements were in the quasi-war with France and the defeat of the Barbary pirates in the First Barbary War.

The quasi-French War interesting. The U.S. owed France money. The French Revolution occurred. The U.S. refused to pay the Revolutionary government. The U.S. position was that the money was owed to the King’s government which no longer existed.

During the several years of Revolutionary government, the U.S. and France warred. Never on land. Only on the sea.

The Constitution was highly successful. Captured many merchant vessels and sunk five battleships.

There was a move in the late 1920s to decommission the Constitution. It was in terrible shape. Need refurbishing big time.

The public cried out a loud no. Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote a poem in tribute to the vessel. Many believe Holmes’ poem contributed greatly to the saving of the Constitution.

Today, the Constitution is being reconditioned once again. A three year restoration at the Charlestown Navy Yard in Massachusetts.

There is another connection with Key West. Not a big deal. Significant nevertheless.

A model of the USS Constitution under glass is located on the second floor south porch of The Little White House.

The 200th anniversary of the Constitution took place in 1997. On July 21 in Boston Harbor, the Constitution proudly sailed in an armada of tall ships. The Constitution rang out a 21 gun salute during the sail.

I was there in Boston Harbor. Exciting. Moving.

I was on my son in law Mark’s boat. Us and a thousand other vessels. So it seemed. Celebrating an American day!

Enjoy your day!


Trump is the man! The people selected him. He deserves our support. I wish him well.

He will screw up, however. Inevitable.

We are all entitled to our opinions.

Many of you who follow this blog are Republican or Conservative. Or, a bit of both. When I say something in the political arena with which you disagree, some of you hit back with all kind of vulgarities.  Do I call you a flaming asshole when I disagree with you? Not nice. I would expect Republicans/Conservatives to have better manners.

Trump was voted in on a wave of populism. The last truly populist President was Andrew Jackson. Way back in 1829 was he elected. Jackson turned out to be an excellent President. I hope Trump will also.

Protests yesterday in ten or more major U.S. cities re Trump’s election. The last time I saw such protests was in 1968 during the Chicago Democratic Convention which nominated Hubert Humphrey. The Chicago protests were larger and violent.

I live on a little island known named Key Haven. There was a question on the ballot as to whether Key Haven residents wanted mosquito testing using genetically modified mosquitoes to take place on Key Haven. Some 3 million GM mosquitoes would be dropped.

The vote was against. 419-224. I doubt it will help. The powers to be decided beforehand it would be a non-binding vote.

Superboat races began yesterday. A big deal! Every hotel, restaurant and bar on the Gulf filled with spectators.

Poker Run will no longer be locally sponsored by Key West’s Sunrise Rotary. The bike gangs put the nail in the coffin. I suspect Poker Run next year will be held in another Florida community.

Veterans Day friday. Key West’s parade begins at 4 on Duval. The parade is sponsored by the U.S. Navy.

We must never forget our veterans. As a nation, we have failed in recent years.

The U.S. Marines. Their birthday! On this day in 1775, the Marine Corps was born. During the American Revolution.

Ever hear of Mary Anderson? On this day in 1903, she obtained a patent for the first windshield wiper. Her invention was mocked. Her patent ran out. Someone else picked it up and got rich. She never made a penny from her invention.

Another Key West something I never knew. The Bagatelle Restaurant at 117 Duval was relocated there in 1974. The two story house was originally located on Fleming next to the library.

Key West Rotary history time.

The year 1928.

The February 16 weekly Rotary meeting was held at the Hotel La Casa Marina. A special guest speaker. Ruth Bryan Owen. She returned two years later as a member of the U.S. Congress. She was from Miami. Her election district included Key West.

Ruth Bryan Owen was one of the first women to super achieve.

Her father was William Jennings Bryan. He ran unsuccessfully for President three times. A pacifist. Prosecutor in the famous Tennessee Scopes trial.

Ruth was married three times. Divorced her first husband. Outlived the next two.

During World War I, Ruth volunteered as a war nurse on the Egyptian-Palestine front. She was there from 1915 to 1918. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt appointed her Ambassador to Denmark and Iceland. She was an early producer and investor in Hollywood film making.

A pacifist as was her father.

Ruth was a delegate to the San Francisco Conference which established the United Nations. Thereafter, she was named an alternate delegate to the United Nations General Assembly.

During her lifetime, she always remembered and was a friend of Key West.

Day 4 of the diet. Made it through the first 3 days. Think I am going to make it.

Enjoy your day!




I continue to learn.

This time that Franklin Delano Roosevelt spent the winter months 1924-1926 on a houseboat in the Florida Keys.

We have Karen Chase to thank for the knowledge.

FDR’s legs were paralyzed. It was thought warm air and warm water would help his condition. FDR and his friend John Lawrence bought a used 71 foot houseboat. They christened it Larooco.

FDR spent two consecutive winters cruising on the Larooco in the Florida Keys.  Fishing and swimming.

We would never have known had it not been for Karen Chase discovering FDR’s daily log covering the trips. Chase discovered the log a few years ago. She put the log into book form.

FDR On His Houseboat – The Larooco Log, 1924-1926 was introduced to the public two days ago at Hyde Park.

The Custom House has invited Chase to speak about FDR’s time on the Larooco as part of its Distinguished Speaker Program. She is scheduled to appear at the Custom House November 17.

Visualize FDR living on the houseboat. Paralyzed, yet fishing and swimming. In our beloved Florida Keys. A story!

It is finally at an end. The Presidential campaign. I will be voting for Hillary later this morning.

I started my diet yesterday. Made it through day 1. I did not leave the house at all yesterday. It was the only way I could avoid the near occasion of sin for me. Food and drink. I know my limitations.

Spent the afternoon working on tonight’s blog talk radio show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Great topics. Some thought provoking. Like the failure of government to see and do anything about two new areas of unemployment in the next four years.

Also, Comey letter #2, a Venezuela update where Vatican intercession has failed, Steven Seagal becomes a Russian citizen, Saudi Arabia extending its lobbying efforts to U.S. governors, a dozen drugmakers under grand jury investigation, a possible cyber war, the real reason behind the ongoing Syrian War, and more.

Join me at 9 my time. Guaranteed interesting!

On this day in 1960, John F. Kennedy was elected President. The nation was excited. The Eisenhower years had been good. Somewhat subdued, however. Kennedy was young and appeared vibrant. He had a young beautiful wife and family.

His years were called Camelot. America would achieve the best of everything. Excitement prevailed.

Unfortunately, Kennedy did not have enough time. He was assassinated in 1963. The dream died.

Harry Truman loved Key West and Key West loves Harry Truman.

A statement I cannot make too many times.

On this date in 1948 and 1951, Truman returned to Key West to work and vacation. It is reported re the 1948 trip that Truman landed at Boca Chica. Twenty five thousand people cheered him on the drive to the Little White House.

The Key West Rotary. Installment 8.

One day. April 4, 1927.

A thursday. Rotary International President Paul P. Harris had left monday. Thursday was the regularly scheduled luncheon meeting for the Key West Rotary.

A big day. Time wise and work wise.

Members had been notified to come to the meeting in overalls. Overalls being the term used I assume for shoulder type dungarees or some other type work pants.

Work the members did! They removed rubbish the length of Duval Street. The event known as Scour Duval for Rubbish Thursday.

The clean up was done in conjunction with the Woman’s Club and the Chamber of Commerce.

Trucks were donated by businesses and individuals. The Rotarians manned them. Twenty trucks. One truck per block of Duval. The rubbish collected was taken to the city dump to be incinerated.

The meeting was also the election meeting.

Robert F. Spottswood was elected President. The Spottswoods have enriched Key West for years. Conchs. The family through the generations community minded.

I assume the new President was grandfather to the present day Robert Spottswood. Robert and wife Elena are my friends. Ever helpful. Work hard on behalf of Key West. One of Robert and his family’s present successes is the Marriott Beachside.

Rotary members went all out to be helpful during the 1920s. They could not do enough for Key West. An inspired group.

George A. T. Roberts was elected Sergeant at Arms at the same time Spottswood was elected President. He died three years into his term. His stone is inscribed with the Rotary motto: Service Above Self.

The men were believers all!

Enjoy your day!




Things were different 100 years ago.

Party time today alcohol and food. Then, poured tea and a presided over punch bowl.

The secondary status of women evident. Rarely were wives’ names mentioned. It was John Smith and wife, Tom Jones and wife.

My installment 7 of Key West Rotary History evidences the differences.

One day. April 4, 1925.

The Key West Rotary was expecting a special guest. International President and Rotary Founder Paul P. Harris and his wife. They were arriving from Havana on the passenger ship Governor Cobb.

A large delegation of Key West Rotary members and wives greeted the arriving guests at the waterfront. Together with City and Chamber of Commerce officials.

The Harris’ were guests at the home of Rotary President Andrew R. Miller and wife at their home at 1401 Duval Street.

A reception was held immediately following the Harris’ arrival at the Miller home.

There was a receiving line. In addition to the Harris’, Rotary Vice President and Mrs. Robert Spottswood greeted guests and made appropriate introductions to the Harris’.

Mrs. Bascom Grooms poured tea. Mrs. Melvin Russell presided at the punch bowl.

The Miller home was decorated in Rotary colors. Gold and black. The centerpiece was the Rotary seal surrounded with marigold flowers. The candlesticks held gold candles.

The reception lasted into the evening. The Harris’ were not staying overnight. The reception continued till Harris and his wife caught the late train to Miami.

Spent an hour on Duval yesterday afternoon watching the Superboat Parade. Huge magnificent boats! The races are scheduled for wednesday, friday and sunday.

Then to Publix to shop for diet food. Inexpensive. $50 for the week. I started the diet this morning. Hope I make it! If I get through this week, I will.

Tavern ‘n Town last night for what I humorously call my last supper. I intended to pig out. The normally good/heavy stuff on the menu did not appeal to me. I ended up having chicken. No desert. Did enjoy three drinks, however.

No booze on the diet.

Met Sue and Kerry at the bar. They have owned a home in Key West and been snowbirds for more than 25 years. Nice people. From the South Jersey area.

Sue workedint an Atlantic City Hospital intensive care unit. Kerry, the Atlantic City casinos.

Thirty six hours from now, the campaign will be over. Good! for some reason, too much this year.

James Comey screwed up. No question. He properly tried to correct his most recent wrongdoing by issuing another letter yesterday. To the effect that after review, there was no evidence of Hillary wrongdoing in the 650,000 Weiner e-mails.

Anna telephoned yesterday from Novara. Her friend Celestina was with her. I have met Celestina several times. A fun person. Happy all the time.

The three of us chatted for a half hour. Celestina speaks no English. My Italian poor. Anna had to translate.

Anna said it was cold in Novara. Novara is in northern Italy. Anna also reported her home in Courmayeur covered with snow. Courmayeur half way up Mont Blanc near the French border.

I told them 80 degrees and sunny in Key West. They wanted to know when they could visit.

I wrote a lengthy column about Jeanette Rankin three years ago in KONK Life. An interesting woman.

On this date in 1916, Rankin became the first woman elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. From Montana. Western women worked shoulder to shoulder with the men. They had a different respect than their eastern compatriots.

Rankin did not last long in office. One term. She was a pacifist. Voted against entry into World War I.

Some twenty years later, Rankin was again elected to the House. Again, only for one term. She was the sole vote against the U,.S. declaration of war against Japan following December 7, 1941.

Rankin needed police help to leave the House building following her vote. A crowd of angry persons had her confined in a telephone booth.

Enjoy your day!