A SLEEPING GIANT AWAKENED

The students at Parkland High School may be a sleeping giant awakened.

Several sources attribute a sleeping giant comment to Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto following Japan’s successful bombing of Pearl Harbor. Yamamoto led the Japanese forces in the attack.

Yamamoto is alleged to have said: “I fear all we have done is awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”

Parkland students are disturbed. Properly so. Disturbed at an age where fear is not a part of their composition. They are able to speak out and are speaking out…..Stop the useless slaughters! Protect students! Washington, do something! President Trump, do something! How much money did the President get from the NRA? And on and on.

Good for them! Their cries/words may finally be the impetus to get something done.

The students cannot be considered crass for asking how much Trump received from the NRA for his campaign. Money does influence. Money does talk.

The number is $21 million. The largest amount the NRA has ever contributed to a Presidential candidate.

Such may account for what appears to be Trump’s calculated silence re gun violence. Note he spoke of first responders on his Parkland visit and merely glossed over the shooting and gun control itself.

The last time a President addressed the NRA was 1983. Till Trump became President Trump. Trump spoke before the NRA and said, “You have a true friend and champion in the White House.”

We believe you Mr. President. You did not lie when you made that statement.

Violence begets violence. One crazy act another. Near home this time. Marathon.

The Monroe County Sheriff’s Department received a phone call yesterday morning that pictures of guns were being shown on Instagram together with a message threatening Marathon High School. Specifically, a band concert to be held that afternoon.

The Sheriff’s Department immediately went to work. Brought all federal ad state agencies together. The perpetrator was identified. Nineteen year old Marathon resident Duviel Gonzalez was arrested.

The arrest was made prior to the band concert. The concert went on a s scheduled at 3 pm, though under heavy security.

Every day a good day when living in Key West. Some even better. Yesterday was one of those days.

I watched the Syracuse/Miami game on TV. Syracuse having a difficult season. Needed an on the road win. Got it! Beat Miami 62-55.

Picked Catherine up before 4. A different Saturday late afternoon into evening began.

First Mary Ellen’s on Applerouth. A relatively new bar. Heard good things about its Happy Hour. Toasted cheese sandwiches and tomato soup the house specialty. Everyone had told me both to die for. They were right!

What no one told me however was that the tomato soup came with garlic bread. Wow! Delicious!

The sun still shining when we left Mary Ellen’s. What next? We walked two blocks to the Green Parrot.

I had not been to the Green Parrot in several years.

The place packed. Standing room only. A New Orleans group playing. People dancing. Stayed a while. Enjoyed a couple of drinks. Enjoyed each other’s company.

Where next as we left the Green parrot? I said, home. I’m tired.

It was dark.

We went to Catherine’s, sat on her terrace by candlelight and talked of many things.

After leaving Catherine’s and on the way home, I stopped at Donna and Terri’s to visit Bear. Donna and Terri live around the block from Catherine.

Bear fine. Biting. Learning to let Donna and Terri know when he has to pee. Goes to the door and whines. The other taking time.

Bear a friendly bundle of joy. A good addition to Donna and Terri’s life. Forgotten are Terri’s still fractured shoulder and Donna’s close encounter with cancer. Bear is everything!

A post Irma update. More than 5 months since the hurricane hit and renovations and rebuilding not close to completion. Not because people are slow. Because Irma beat the hell out of many parts of the Keys.

This past week the County started cleaning up the canals. Those of you who do not live in the Keys nor have never visited must understand that canals are like roads. Behind many homes. People swim and boat in them.

Not since Irma, however.

Pictures in yesterday’s edition of the Key West Citizen painted the picture vividly. Debris like you would not believe. Everything from homes to boats to appliances to shrubbery. So thick, it appears man could walk across them and the water.

A busy Sunday ahead. I have a luncheon scheduled. Then Kate Miano’s Gardens later in the afternoon.

Enjoy your Sunday!

BEAR IN TOWN

There is a bear in town. By name only.

Donna and Terri’s family now 3. A dog. Named Bear. A golden retriever. Eight weeks old.

A baby!

Met Bear last night. Enjoyed dinner at Donna and Terri’s with Bear.

Bear arrived the night before. Flew in from Detroit. Spent 11 hours in a cage.  A 3 hour stop over involved.

Cried all night. Can’t blame him. Stripped from his mother and 8 brothers and sisters. A new environment.

Talked with Donna this morning. He cried again all night. Terri does the night shift.

The game plan is to have Bear trained as a guide dog. Terri is blind in one eye and the other is going. The eye problem has nothing to do with the cancer. Terri is in remission and beaming.

The new Key West Amphitheater presently featuring a four day musical festival. Appears a success. Many tourists in town for the concert. When not at the Amphitheater, they are filling the downtown bars known for good music.

Apparent reason for the early morning shooting at Banana Bay Resort coming to light. Drugs. Police found 4 adults, 3 children and the drugs in one room. Lots of drugs. Marijuana, crack and powder cocaine, MDMS, and drug paraphernalia. All wrapped for sale. In a car outside, oxycodone pills.

Frequent Key West visitor Don Teich spends most of his year working in Asia. He and Chris Maxam are to be married in several weeks here in Key West at the Hyatt.

I mentioned Hemingway recently. For some reason, Don was in Spain. Pamplona to be exact. Where the bulls run. He sent me a photo of him running on the street where the bulls run. At night. Don running, no bulls behind him.

Courageous!

Pebble Beach Golf Tournament this weekend. Watched a bit.

What a course! I played it and its sister courses several times. Pebble Beach the most difficult course I ever played. The pros have their work cut out for them this weekend.

What does a husband do if his wife cheats? Leave, shoot the wife, shoot the lover, whatever?

Marital infidelity appears to have been dealt with in a different fashion in 1829 in Key West. A Mexican Naval officer named Charles Hawkins fought a duel with William Allison McRes, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida. Four shots fired. One man shot in the wrist, the other in the thigh.

Satisfaction obtained.

Why the duel? Hawkins saw McRes leaving his wife’s bedroom via the window.

Anna wrote to tell me one of the African negros involved in the voodoo killing was apprehended in the Milan railway station. Brought back memories.

About 10 years ago, Anna and I were in the Milan station. I fell down the stairs. Did a number on my arm. An open cut and bleeding.

Anna panicked and rushed me to a drug store in the plaza. She was going to take care of me. Needed bandages, etc.

The bandages, etc. were behind the counter. Anna is yelling for help. The girl was slow. Anna went behind the counter, grabbed what she needed, and wrapped me up.

As I think back, it may have been the first of my falls.

A new mosquito killer is being tested in Miami. The concern dengue fever and ZIKA. The company MosquitoMate.

Male mosquitoes are sterilized in a lab. They are then incapable of impregnating females. The males do not bite, have healthy sex drives, and will mate with females whose eggs then won’t hatch.

Six thousand were dropped on Brewer Park in South Miami thursday. It is expected that over a six month period, a total of six million will be released.

What is good for the goose is good for the gander. And vice versa.

California Assemblywoman Christina Garcia has been active in the local and national #Me Too Movement.

A male staffer said that in 2014 following an Assembly softball game, Christina approached him, squeezed his buttocks, and tried to touch his crotch. He told two friends immediately afterwards.

Both the Assemblywoman and male staffer agree she was drunk. She has no recollection.

The matter is under investigation.

Ian Welsh is an English blogger I recently began reading. His most recent blog concerned gender pay equality. Women should be paid as much as men for doing the same job.

He reported how the British Broadcasting Company was handling the situation. The BBC is the largest public broadcaster in the world. Twenty thousand nine hundred fifty full-time employees. An additional 35, 402 part-time, flexible and fixed contract staff.

Rather than increase women’s salaries, the salaries of men are being decreased. As much as 30 percent. All in an effort to tackle the gender pay crisis.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

MY COUNTRY, ‘TIS OF THEE, SWEET LAND OF LIBERTY…..

My Country, ’tis of thee, Sweet land of liberty…..Let freedom ring!

No more. We’re losing it.

Democracy is being sacrificed on the altar of Donald Trump. Politicians more concerned with expediency rather than correctness.

Yesterday, Napoleon Bonaparte Broward. Today, Stephen R. Mallory.

Mallory of Key West fame. Confederate fame, also. Key West’s famous Mallory Square is named after him. His bronze bust sits in the Key West Memorial Sculpture Garden. One of 39 recognized for having had a major impact on Key West.

He was a United States Senator from Florida 1851-1861. During that time, he was Chairman of the Committee on Naval Affairs.

He joined the Confederacy when Florida seceded. He served as Secretary of the Navy for the Confederacy during the entire Civil War. He did an excellent job for the Confederacy.

He fled Richmond at the end of the War, was captured, imprisoned, and charged with treason. After one year, he was paroled by President Andrew Johnson.

Mallory rarely if any time returned to Key West. He settled in Pensacola where he practiced law til his death.

I spoke of the Mallory/Confederacy problem last year when the move to remove statues, proclamations, etc. of Southern supporters arose. I asked: Should Mallory Square be renamed? Should Mallory’s bust be removed from the Garden of honor?

My answer then simple. The same today. Leave well enough alone. Broward, Mallory, and all the rest part of American history. Good, bad or indifferent.

History should neither be altered, destroyed nor removed.

Attended the Key West Craft Show yesterday afternoon. Covered half the length of Whitehead. Everything on exhibit, everything for sale. Great craft!

The Craft Show has been ongoing more than 30 years.

I bought my first Jack Baron painting 20 years ago at the Craft Show. A black Madonna and Child. $3,500. My wife at the time said I was out of my mind.

I still have the painting, as well as many other Baron works. It gives me joy every time I look at it.

Visited with Diana Millikan at cocktail time at her Key West home on Hilton Haven Drive. Her tiny condo sits on a canal.

Diana and I have been working on a book together for ever so long. It seems to be taking forever to complete. We are still at the research stage. The novel intended is a history of Key West prostitution. All the way back to 1660.

Diana just returned from a trip to Haiti to attend the funeral of a friend. She was down with dysentery for three days. She said she drank bottled water. Turned out the water was bottled in Haiti with Haitian waters.

Then to the Chart Room. Shaun bartending. Quiet.

Heard a cruise ship could not dock yesterday. Wind too strong.

Spoke with Tom and Fran Dixson in Buffalo last night. They recently returned from a cruise to Cuba. Leave soon for a 2 week tour of Rome and southern Italy. They are traveling with a Buffalo area seminary. The trip includes an audience with the Pope.

Too much on  my mind sometimes. I thought the Syracuse/Pitt game was tomorrow night. It was saturday night. Missed it. Syracuse won 60-55.

Next game wednesday evening against Georgia Tech at 8. I will not miss it.

Donna called last night. They made it to Tampa. Donna hurting bad. Going to find a Tampa orthopedist today.

Terri’s testing began at 6:30 this morning. I wish her well.

New Orleans has Mardi Gras. Key West, Fantasy Fest.

Beads have been clogging New Orleans’ catch basins for years. To the point, water ain’t moving. A bead removal project underway. Estimated 93,000 pounds of beads (46 tons) to be removed. Sixty four thousand catch basins. Cost: $7 million.

Will Key West ever be so afflicted? Hope not.

We have been complaining about Russian interference in our elections. Putin has turned the tables on us. He is complaining of U.S. meddling in the Russian elections to be held March 18. The pot calling the kettle black.

There is no need for any country to attempt to influence Russian elections. Putin either kills or jails the opposition before the election.

We take automobiles for granted. To drive or ride in. There was a time when autos were new, however.

William McKinley was the 25th President of the United States. He was the first American President to ride in an auto. September 1901 in a Stanley Steamer.

Enjoy your day!

 

NAPOLEON BONAPARTE BROWARD…..HIS STATUE RELOCATED TO THE DARKNESS OF STORAGE

Napoleon Bonaparte Broward. A formidable name.

Broward was Governor of Florida 1905-1908. A man of vision. Best remembered for draining the Everglades. He knew such had to be accomplished before south Florida could develop.

Today’s Broward County was incorporated in 1915. The new County was named after the former Governor. The man was held in esteem. So much so that a statue of Broward later erected in the lobby of the downtown courthouse in Fort Lauderdale.

On September 21, 2017, the JAABlog published an article setting forth Broward’s segregationist views. Unknown to recent generations. The views were in writing. The JAABlog reprinted portions of them.

All hell broke loose! The momentum to remove the statue was immediate.

Turned out Broward was an unapologetic segregationist. He wanted Congress to provide money to purchase the property of negroes and then transport them to a territory purchased by the United States. He envisioned an all black territory. The blacks would forever be prohibited from returning to the United States.

The County Mayor is black. The 17th Judicial Circuit housed in the building was ok with a removal/relocation if evidence of racial discrimination existed. The T. J. Reddick Bar Association, a Broward County black lawyers group, supported the statue’s removal.

Many supported removal and whatever might follow. The County ‘s black Mayor justified her position on the grounds that the statue was merely a piece of art.

Others opposed. Less than those who supported the removal. The reason being Broward was part of history and his statue should be left alone. A reminder of a time not to be repeated.

In the dark of night, October 18-19, 2017, the statue was removed and placed in storage.

My opinion remains as it did a year ago when the statue problem was rampant. History is history. It should not be removed or buried. It should not be forgotten. We learn from history.

What now of the name of the County? Broward. If the reasoning for its removal is valid, then the name of the County should be changed. An all or nothing situation.

Recall that last year, I pointed out on several occasions Washington was a slave holder. His name should be removed from our Capital, the spiral monument in Washington, and his face and name from the dollar bill. Jefferson likewise should receive similar treatment. Tear his magnificent statue in the Jefferson Memorial down. And so on.

Lets not pick and chose. All or nothing at all. Otherwise, a sort of hypocrisy exists.

Yesterday, a quiet saturday for me. I worked on Growing Up Italian in the afternoon. Planned on going out in the evening. Felt tired. Remained home watching television.

I had to make an adjustment re my drug coverage. Telephoned United Health Care. Spoke with Renee in the Philippines. We took cafe of my problem and enjoyed a short chat.

Renee had never heard of Key West. I filled her in. Told her of my blog. She wanted to read it. Gave her the site. Hopefully, a new follower.

Heard from Donna and Terri last night. They made it to Fort Myers. Two more days of traveling to go.

Donna said, “Lots of driving…..too much pain.” She had just taken a pain pill and was icing her shoulder.

I came across an interesting comment yesterday…..In North Korea, people are forced to listen to propaganda. In the USA, people do it willingly. The example given FOX News.

Robin Robinson writes gardening articles for the Key West Citizen. This week’s column titled “Botanical Paintings: More Than Pretty Flowers.”

The column provided food for thought. All artists paint/painted plants and flowers. Go back in time. There were no cameras. People drew pictures of the plants and flowers.

Brought back to mind movies of old. Mutiny on the Bounty, for example. There was always some one on board drawing pictures of the plants and flowers found on the new and strange islands.

Robinson writes well. She views herself as a writer and not a botanist. In her life before Key West, she was a syndicated columnist writing for the Chicago Daily News. She is also a novelist and active with the Key West Garden Club.

Refrigerators can be expensive. Some out of sight.

Trump is getting a new refrigerator on Air Force One. $24 million. You read correctly! Actually, $23, 657,671. Seventy cubic feet. One that can keep foods cold a long time. Justification is there are  situations where a President may end up flying around for several days because of a war or other disaster.

I smiled when I read the article. Recall when Trump became President, he claimed Boeing was ripping off the U.S. re a new Air Force One to be built. Cancelled the contract in effect. Boeing came hat in hand and told Trump they would reduce the price.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

 

 

 

 

SHRIMP BOATS IS A-COMIN’

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!

 

 

100 YEARS LATER…..ANOTHER FLU EPIDEMIC

It was 1918. Millions died world wide. From the worst flu epidemic up to that time.

Now 100 years later. A flu epidemic of huge proportions gripping the United States. Not as devastating as the 1918 epidemic. Affecting more than normal, however.

The flu vaccine this year only 10-30 percent effective. A new flu bug. N3N2. The vaccine ineffective against it.

California hit bad. The hospitals full. Giant camp like tents being set up in parking lots to accomodate the sick. Nurses being brought in from out of state. Hospitals already full beyond capacity turning away ambulances.

Persons over and below 65 dying. The young normally can handle an attack and survive. Yet 40 under 65 have already died this year. The year is not yet a month old. Last year, 9.

The 1918 flu epidemic hit Utica. I was not born yet. The family has told me of relatives who died. There was a significant relative who did not die. My grandfather.

He was dying. My grandmother attempted the only recourse left her. She prayed. To Saints Cosmas and Damian. Saints revered by immigrant Italians.

The Saints were twins, physicians and martyrs.

Every year on the last weekend in September, a feast honoring Cosmas and Damian was held in Utica. Still is to this day. My grandmother told the Saints she would march in the procession on the Sunday morning of the feast barefoot the rest of her life if they saved my grandfather’s life.

She did.

My grandfather recovered. He lived to 94.

I have a specific recollection of the feast and Sunday morning procession. My grandmother permitted me to join her when I was small.

I wore shoes, however. She, barefoot as promised.

My grandmother carried a candle. A big one! Three feet high and 3 inches in diameter.

Some years, not easy.

I have my grandparents’ wedding picture hanging in my living room. My grandmother was a sleek beauty. Thin. By 1918, she had 7 children and the years showed bodywise. She was a typical Italian grandmother. Short and obese.

The walk and candle were hard for her. Some years, the sweat poured from her. She persevered. Never missed the feast till her late 60’s when she developed heart problems.

Tomorrow could be a significant day in American history. Budget or no budget. A confrontation. Who will blink? Will anyone blink?

Key West weather continues to be cold. The high today projected at 60 degrees. The low tonight 53.

An emotional story on page one of the Key West Citizen this morning. Photos, also.

Two Vietnam veterans meeting again after 53 year. Willie Powell, Houston, Texas and Ray Gutierrez, Key West. They had fought together shoulder to shoulder in the jungles of Vietnam.

They discovered each other last year on the internet.

Powell was in on a cruise ship with his daughter. The two men spent the day together.

I don’t know what it was. The way the story was written or the essence of the story itself. Whatever, the story brought tears to my eyes.

Last night, the Chart Room and Tavern ‘n Town.

The Chart Room great! Good crowd, interesting people.

Things a bit confusing at first. A very lovely young lady standing on one side of me and a couple seated on the other. Turned out all three had roots in Cape May, New Jersey. Their conversation was running through me and over me till the young lady moved to an empty seat next to the woman.

Eventually, I was allowed into the conversation.

The young lady is Morgan. Extremely beautiful. No exaggeration. Twenty six years old. Recently moved to Key West. Her mother already living here.

Morgan bubbly. Well educated. She has a Master’s Degree. Geography. Started working two days ago at the Naval Base at Boca Chica. She is employed by the federal government. Excellent starting salary and benefits.

Turned out Morgan knew me. She has been reading this blog quite a while.

The couple were Ed and Yvonne. Now residing in Charleston, South Carolina. Run a beach bar. For 30 years. Three grown children.

They have been visiting Key West twice a year for 15 years.

Now looking to buy. They started looking this trip. Ed and I spoke about Key West real estate, the value of living in Key West, etc.

It was time to eat. I headed out to Tavern ‘n Town. Lucky to get a seat at the bar. Enjoyed prime rib again. Getting to be my diet dinner. Only the meat and au jus sauce.

Guaranteed fun night this evening. Dinner party at Donna and Terri’s. Eight of us. Large stone crabs!

My book. Irma and Me. The hurricane and Louis. Forget me not. Available at amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, and kobobooks.com.

Enjoy your day!

 

VIRGINITY FOR SALE

My July 14, 2016 blog was limited to one subject. The New Prostitution. The story of college girls and young ladies selling their bodies for big dollars to wealthy men who were looking for smart educated women.

No pimp or escort service involved. The ladies independent contractors. Their fee generally $1,000 to $5,000 a night. Many had annual contracts with the men paying in the six figures.

The young women opted for the way of life for the money involved. Money required for tuition, college debt, clothes, and to replace wage stagnation. Very few in the life for the fun of it.

It is not uncommon for peripheral business to spin off successful ones. Millennial ladies selling their virginity. A one time big dollar maker. Attractive to a young lady whose virginity has been preserved.

A lottery generally involved. The men bid for the young lady’s virginal charms.

I find the sale of virginal vaginas difficult to believe. Not the money aspect. Some men have so much money, they can spend it foolishly. What I do wonder is how many women today have preserved their virginity into their late teens and early 20’s. It  does not fit into the promiscuous society we live in.

Bailey Gibson is 23. Still a virgin. She has decided to lose her virginity in the most profitable way. She had been saving it for marriage.

Her virginity is being auctioned off by the Moonlite Bunny Ranch in Carson City, Nevada. She and Moonlite will share the proceeds equally.

Not the first time Moonlite has done such a thing. Last year, the virginity of a Katherine Stone was auctioned for $400,000.

There are other such reported cases world wide. An Abu Dhabi businessman paid $2.9 million for a virgin 19 year old model. A Hong Kong businessman $2.5 million for a virgin 18 year old Romanian model.

Why do the ladies do it? They are broke. They do it to service existing debt and/or setting themselves up for life financially.

Smart, dumb, non consequential? I don’t know.

My yesterday did not involve any ladies from the new prostitution or virgins for sale.

It started with a visit to Tammy for a pedicure and manicure. The salon was almost empty. Few customers. Friday generally busy.

I asked Tammy where the ladies were. She said most had called and cancelled saying they did not want to go out in the cold. Sixty degrees.

My first stop last night was the 7 Artists Gallery. Opening night of Andreas Franke’s exhibit. He paints humans in underwater scenarios.

Enjoyed the exhibit. Met the Gallery’s owner Jennifer Badry. Her business card amused me: Janitor, Jeweler, Proprietor.

Turned out we have a common friend. Jennifer brought June Hudson’s name into the conversation. I have not seen June in a couple of years.

I had an hour to kill before being due at Donna and Terri’s for dinner. Decided to stop in the Chart Room two blocks away.

John bartending. Sheila, Jean and Joe Thornton at the bar. The Thorntons having a drink before going over to the Red Barn for a show.

Sheila introduced me to Christina. A lovely person.

Christina works for KWAHS at the Custom House. The front desk person. Sheila, who once worked at the Custom House, said Christina was the go to person.

She bartended at one time in New Orleans. At a place called the Dungeon. John had been there. A bad place. In all my trips to New Orleans, never heard nor got to the Dungeon. A missed experience.

Christina has a Masters in Journalism. She claims her journalistic background makes it possible for her to enjoy her job and life. She views her existence as living history as it is occurring.

Always good company and good food at Donna and Terri’s. Love the ladies! The pot roast Donna prepared, also.

Another good day and night ahead for me. Syracuse/Notre Dame this afternoon. This evening, time with Catherine. Happy Hour at the Saint followed by the Churchill movie across the street at the Tropic Cinema.

I am a history freak. Especially two wars. The Civil and World War II. The Darkest Hour is going to be a real turn on.

Key West and other Keys communities are small town America. Medical specialties for serious illnesses unavailable. One has to get to a hospital in Miami or elsewhere on the mainland swiftly.

Monroe puts a portion of our tax dollars to good use. The County owns two helicopters. Medical personnel on board. The helicopters fly those needing critical care to Miami and elsewhere.

At no cost to Monroe County residents. One of the helicopters rests on the lawn of our local Key West hospital.

The numbers are out re flights for 2017. A record number. Nine hundred twenty three.

The weather. Still cold. Cold for Key West. I was out yesterday in long pants and a heavy winter jacket.

Last night, in the mid 50’s. Today, 69 and the evening 54.

One of the best people to have ever lived in Key West has returned for the season. Patrick “Paddy Cakes” Hayes. Loved by all. A good friend to all.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

TONIGHT…..ANDREAS FRANKE

A special exhibit tonight. At Seven Artists Gallery on Simonton. Vienna artist Andreas Franke. A passionate diver. His preference underwater art.

Seven Artists’ jewelry designer Jennifer Badry responsible for Franke’s exhibition.

Show time 5:30-8:30.

I am familiar with Franke’s work. Outstanding! Worth seeing.

Busy day yesterday.

Started with lunch at Harpoon Harry’s with Guy de Boer. KONK Life and KONK E-Blast publisher.

Guy an old friend. Responsible for my writings, etc. Got me started 12 years ago with a KONK Life column and Internet talk show.

Guy is helping promote Irma and Me. In the very near future, Louis  will be featured in a front full page picture advising the publication of Irma and Me, together with a short article inside. Guy did a similar scenario in 2014 when I wrote my first book The World Upside Down.

A good friend.

After lunch, Guy took me to a back yard to see the boat he is repairing. Actually, rebuilding. A 36 foot power boat. The vessel a victim of Irma. Another boat was thrown into one side. The other side slammed into a dock. The boat a mess.

Guy fears not. He works daily on putting the boat together. Per his explanation of what he was doing, it was obvious he was familiar with the repairs.

He got the boat for nothing following Irma. It was heading for the junk yard. Guy took it off the owner’s hands.

A major job! The boat is a mess.

Spent the afternoon reworking Growing Up Italian. Been working on it 4 years. Four rewrites. My next publication. Hopefully by Easter.

The Chart Room last night.

Key West is normally quiet following New Years till the first of February. Not this year. Key West continues to be packed this week. The season is here!

The Chart Room was body tight. I was lucky to get a seat when I came in. Someone in front of me was leaving.

Old home week. Sheila, David, Steve and Cindy. And Jean and Joe Thornton. My Irma saviors. I spent 12 days at their home in Birmingham escaping Irma.

I was not aware Jean and Joe had returned. Turns out they have been here a week already.

While I was working on Growing Up Italian in the afternoon, a call came in from Jean. I did not answer. I did not want to interrupt my thought wave. They come and go so I have to be careful. Retention difficult in my old age.

I forgot to call Jean back till I was in the Chart Room at 7. Made my apologies. Jean said she and Joe would be with us shortly.

The reason Jean had called was to invite me to dinner. She had cooked one of her specialties. Chili and corn bread. To compensate, she brought a container of chili with her to the Chart Room. My lunch today.

Met a very interesting fellow at the bar. Paul. From London. We spoke for at least an hour. London, the U.S., travel, business, etc. To bad he leaves today. We agreed we hoped to meet again when he returns next year. This was his fourth visit to Key West.

Today, he leaves for Majorca. He and his wife have a vacation home there.

Then a quick stop to Publix. Out of diet food.

I have been at the diet since November 27. Cheated only Christmas eve and Christmas day. I am not losing. Stuck on 10 pounds since mid December. Depressing. I am losing inches. Clothes loser. Wearing clothes I could not get into.

Today going to be another busy one. A pedicure and manicure with Tammy at 1. Dinner tonight with my lesbian wives Donna and Terri. Donna cooking. Pot roast!

A couple of Trump comments.

Fire and Fury seems to be doing a number on him. If only 20 percent true, still devastating.

The book has opened a Pandora’s box. Brought Trump’s mental stability to the fore front. Dangerous for him. I have considered the President a nut since the primaries. He is not equipped to be a President.

It was announced yesterday that Trump had opened east and west coast waters to oil drilling. A disaster in the making. One big spill and environmental ruination for years to a vast portion of ocean.

The oil drilling thing an example of Trump sucking up to and pursuing the interests of big business.

Another Trumpy. Trump told us the huge corporate tax cut would add thousands of jobs. Comcast announced yesterday it let go 500 employees.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

I AM WOMAN

Two items of historical significance occurred this date, though in different years.

The year 1972. Helen Reddy’s brilliant song I Am Woman hit the top of the pop charts. A work for the ages. Perfect for the burgeoning women’s movement. One of its beginnings.

I Am Woman’s words involved personal empowerment. Identified women as a class unto themselves.

The song still with us today. Reflected in the sexual harassment issue facing society today.

Women have come a long way!

The other event of historical significance occurred in 1854. Alfred Lord Tennyson’s The Charge of the Light Brigade was published. The charge having occurred at Balaklava during the Crimean War.

I first read the Charge in high school. It resonates with me to this day. “Into the valley of Death / Rode the six hundred / …..Their’s not to reason why / Their’s but to do and die.”

Dinner at Donna and Terri’s last night. Donna cooked special for me. My diet. Pieces of beef. Delicious.

Terri looks better each time I see her.

The Lighted Boat Parade was scheduled for tonight. Canceled. Rescheduled. The weather.

Raining like hell already. Temperature has already dropped. Sixty nine at the moment. High will be 72. Mid to high 60s during the canceled Boat Parade. Sixty two when I wake tomorrow morning.

The cause has to be the snow storm moving northeast out of Texas. Key West will not experience snow. Don’t think we ever have. However, we are being hit with the outer limits of the storm. Cold and rain.

The Lighted Boat Parade has been rescheduled for next saturday.

The cold spell will be with us till thursday.

The Sheriff’s Animal Farm’s annual Christmas event tomorrow. One to 3. Wear a sweater or jacket.

What would Christmas be without Larry Smith? Larry’s annual Holiday Jazz Concert friday at The Studios of Key West. Always an enjoyable event. I will be there.

Wife Christine will be singing as only she can.

Leave well enough alone! My words directed to the Catholic Church.

Pope Frances announced he wants to reword the Lord’s Prayer. After 2,000 years!

His concern is with “Lead us not into temptation.” Claims it sounds like God is leading us into temptation when in reality it is the devil.

Blames the problem on the translations of the Lord’s Prayer over the years.

The Lord’s Prayer is part of the Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox Christian traditions. Basically as presently worded.

There has been a movement in the Church towards the change for several years. Frances lending his support by his announcement.

The Catholic Churches of France and Spain have already adopted the change.

I remember years ago when the Catholic Church changed the Mass from Latin to English and mandated Church goers sing during services. I believe the Catholic Church lost half its followers because of the two changes.

God help Donald Trump! He needs it.

His very recent recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel is having immediate consequences. Three days of fighting in the streets between Israelis and Palestinians. The violence is escalating by day. Yesterday, rockets from Gaza into Israel, retaliatory air strikes by Israel on the Gaza Strip.

Trump is bristling to get us into a war.

Richard Cohen in a recent article in the Washington Post made several interesting comments re Trump: He “has made us a meaner, smaller people.” “Moral principal has been replaced by political cowardice.” “This is America’s darkest hour.”

Eugene Robinson writes for the Washington Post, also. He recently wrote that the Party of Lincoln has devolved into the Party of Trump. The GOP today belongs to Trump.

The Republican Party no longer can claim the mantle of honesty and purity.

Displaced boats in the lower Keys because of Irma exceeding the number anticipated. Thought to be 1,300. Up to 1,500 already raised and cleared. More to go.

Overall in Florida, 2,069 boats have already been raised.

Irma did its job!

The State immediately began replacing trees following Irma. The trees are replanted close to each other. We have learned that planting trees close to each other helps them survive strong wind storms. The trees break the wind and protect each other.

Syracuse/Colgate at 2 this afternoon. Syracuse will win.

Irma and Me’s sales numbers good. Higher than expected at this point. I am pleased.

Irma and Me is available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and KoboBooks.

Thus far, Irma and Me is the only book written re a person’s experiences involving Irma.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

TRUMP…..WORSE BY DAY

Trump appears to be losing it. He may already have.

Consideration of his mental stability is neither a Democratic nor Republican thing. Just good common sense.

We may be on te brink of war with North Korea. Reason enough to be concerned. Two nuts with their fingers on the button.

The problem is how to be rid of Trump.

Many are advocating the 25th Amendment. Empowers the Vice-President and a majority of the officers of the Executive Department (considered to be the Cabinet), or such other body as Congress to provide, to determine if the President should be removed. The grounds….The President is unable to discharge the powers of his office.

Ratified in 1967. Never used.

I would not use it. It would be precedent setting. I fear in the future a group of dissidents seeking to dispose of a President would rely on it. A peaceful Presidential coup. The U.S. was not created for Presidential coups.

Then how?

Mueller moving to impeachment would help. However, it does not appear Mueller is ready.

The answer. I don’t know. I am fearful of what is happening. I have no solution.

If Trump’s mental capacities becomes worse, perhaps then the 25th amendment.

I worry about North Korea and a nuclear war in the meantime. One that definitely would result in nuclear bombs falling on American cities.

My third day without hot water. Cold showers really wakes a person! Precludes shaving, also.

Landlord has been by. Says the problem is electrical. What do I know?

Landlord says he can’t get anyone here till friday morning between 9-11. I have no choice but to wait. Carpenters, electricians, etc. are all gainfully employed since Irma.

Last night terrific! Donna and Terri invited me for dinner. We shared four dozen stone crabs. Love the girls!

Big day today! Only one thing scheduled. A haircut with Lori. Always pleasant. Enjoy Lori. She has been my barber for 15 years.

Saturday schedule full. Three things I want to do. Don’t know if I can fit all three in.

The first I definitely will.

Thirty years ago, I was Best Man when Bob and Helen Marks were married in Portland, Oregon. We have seen each other probably only two times over the years.

Bob and Helen are stopping in Key West on a Viking cruise for the day saturday. I plan on meeting them at 12:30 and enjoying a leisurely lunch with them at Louie’s Backyard. Much catching up to do.

The evening is where the problem exists.

Syracuse plays Kansas at 5:30. Kansas ranked #2 nation wide. Got to see the game!

The always fabulous Christmas Parade at 7. Generally watch it with Lisa and the grandkids. Whether I will depends on how the Syracuse/Kansas game is working out.

Basketball over the grandkids. I know terrible! They are now 12 an 13. I have only missed one Christmas Parade over the years. This may be the second.

Matt Lauer down the tubes. Who is next? There will be a next and a next. Such is sex and its motivations.

My concern is that mob rule seems to be taking over. The crowd commands. Where is due process, the right to defend ones self?

The cry for “justice” is rampant nation wide.

Not every harassment calls for the death penalty. There are degrees. Grab ass one or two times is not comparable to pedophilia. Each should carry punishment equal to the severity of the charge.

A lot of big guys are coming down. What about the pedophile running for Senator in Alabama? What about the man in the White House who on video and later in an interview admitted grabbing pussies/crotches? Do they pay?

I spoke with two ladies yesterday re the problem. Both first expressed the need to kill. Each then followed up with what might be described as complicity. What was the woman’s part? Why did she not complain at the time? Both thought because they wanted to keep their jobs and hoped silence would get them that promotion.

The madness must stop. An orderly process followed. Get the bad guys, but get them legally!

Enjoy your day!