A BEGUILING HISTORY…..THE SOUTHERNMOST HOUSE

Big trees from little acorns grow.

The story of Key West. A tiny island 4 x 2.5 miles. A huge history. Whatever the eye can see, a story anxious to be told.

The Southernmost House. 1400 Duval Street. The corner of Duval and South Streets.  An historic mansion sitting on the Atlantic Ocean.

The Southernmost was built in 1897 by Judge Jeptha Vining Harris. The cost $250,000. An extremely huge sum in those days.

The Judge’s wife was Florida Curry. Florida was the youngest daughter of William Curry, Florida’s first millionaire.

A three story structure. Queen Anne Victorian in design. Open water views. Public rooms, two story balconies, and large glass stained windows to catch the ocean breezes.

Elegant.

The new Curry home had one oddity. Only one bedroom.

Electricity was a novelty at the time. Florida retained the services of Thomas Edison to oversee the design and installation of an electrical system.

Socialization and entertainment on a humongous scale took place during the years the Judge and Florida resided in the House.

Soon came the prohibition years 1919-33. An air conditioning system was installed. Air conditioning as new as electricity was when installed.

The use of the mansion changed. It became a speakeasy. The first floor was turned into a restaurant. The second was utilized for casino gambling. The third for “socializing.”

The Southernmost was visited during the prohibition years by celebrities and gamblers. The House was a stop over on the way to Havana.

The 1940’s found the House being turned into a night club. The Cafe Cayo Hueso. A gathering place for the rich and famous. Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams, Gore Vidal, Truman Capote, Tallulah Bankhead, Louis Armstrong, and Charles Lindberg.

The Southernmost was completely renovated in 1949 for use once again as a private residence. Many dignitaries visited. Spain’s King Juan Carlos, Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, John Kennedy, Richard Nixon, and Jimmy Carter.

Today, the Southernmost House has acquired a new dignity and elegance. One bedroom when constructed in 1897. Now a class 18 room bed and breakfast.

Spent yesterday afternoon at Hot Dog Church with Donna, Terri and friends. A weekly lesbian gathering. Good food and company. A few males are welcome. I am one of them.

The event is held at Aqua’s Back Bar. Lauri in charge.

Later in the evening, I enjoyed a light dinner with Donna and Terri at their home.

Bear is getting big. Only 18 weeks old. Looks full grown already. Well trained. I am still his buddy. He lay next to me with his leg on mine.

Terri singing tonight! She is the featured performer at Aqua’s Dueling Bartenders. The place will be packed with those wanting to hear Terri sing.

I am doing the blog late this morning. I had to be at the hospital early this morning for a barium swallow test. Suspect I will be in Miami in June for surgery.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

LAST SUPPER…..MINE

I viewed last night’s dinner as my Last Supper. Till tomorrow night. Today, liquids only.

Tomorrow morning, a colonoscopy and endoscopy. I have had them before. The procedure nothing. Knocked out. The prep today the problem. You who have had the procedure understand. Those who have not, your time will come and you will understand.

I enjoyed lamb chops at Antonia’s. The lovely Nicolle bartending. As I think about it, I was enjoying lamb chops last monday at La Trattoria when it became necessary for Carrie the bartender to Heimlich me.

One of the reasons for the procedures tomorrow.

After Antonia’s, It was Publix. I had to buy various liquids to consume today. No food till tomorrow afternoon.

Prior to dinner, I stopped at Aqua. my usual monday evening haunt. Dueling Bartenders. Tom Luna and Rick Dery great. My friend Liz sitting on the other side of the bar enjoying them also. Liz looked great! A new hairdo.

Due to the fun time I shall be enjoying today and tomorrow, some activities/events have been cancelled. My Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou podcast will not be aired this evening. Nor this blog and my Key West Lou Live video tomorrow morning.

Paraphrasing General Douglas MacArthur, I shall return thursday.

Big Pine is 30 miles up the road. North on US 1. Got killed by Irma. Still recovering. Many yet homeless.

Sunday another disaster befell its residents. A raging wildfire. Still burning yesterday. Thought to be under control, but will not be sure until today runs its course.

Smoke covering the Key.

Local, state and federal forestry personnel battling the flames. Fire crews brought in from all the agencies. Including a helicopter which dropped 500 gallons of water at a time.

As of last night, 100 acres already burned. Strong winds encouraged the fire. Dried vegetation left over from Irma fueled it.

A tough fire to fight. The firefighters would put out one area only to find another had begun elsewhere.

Fortunately, losses limited to one house and one garage. No lives.

William Hackley became a part of our lives 2 years ago. Hackley lived and worked in Key West prior to the Civil War. He kept a diary. The Key West Citizen found portions of it and has been reporting Hackley’s life on a daily basis.

I have read 99 percent of the articles. Hackley is moving. Leaving Key West. He has been packing for a couple of weeks. Somewhere along the way, I must have missed a diary entry. I do not know why he is moving.

While in Key West, Hackley and his family enjoyed the life of the well to do. Hackley an attorney holding various positions.

I did a little digging and came up with Hackley’s life after leaving Key West. Only 10 years. He died during a yellow fever epidemic while living in Memphis in 1867.

Hackley left Key West in 1857. Settled in Joliet, Illinois for 6 years. Ran into financial difficulties. Moved to Memphis, Tennessee.

From 1863-1865, Hackley worked as a special agent for the US Treasury and as a cotton agent. In 1865, he became a special agent of the Treasury Department responsible for gathering cotton which had belonged to the Confederate States in Mississippi.

A yellow fever epidemic of great proportion struck in 1867. Hackley infected. He died in Memphis from yellow fever in 1867.

Trump making noises about immigration again. The “caravan” immigrants from Honduras and Guatemala trying to reach the United States. Most seek asylum. They have the necessary paperwork prepared for presentation to US officials at a border point.

Trump announced in recent days that the “caravan” was reaching the Tijuana crossing into the United States. He ordered the Department of Homeland Security to deny them entry.

Typical of Trump, he made it sound like barbarians were at the gate.

Not so.

The initial group leaving Honduras and Guatemala totaled 1,200. Families, many with children and babies. All walking.

The group reaching Tijuana 50. A handful. With papers.

Trump is going to deny them entry without even a proper review of their papers. Some or all just might qualify for entry.

Trump is a big man physically and a big man in every other respect. A giant. He is beating up little people.

Enjoy your day!

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WOE THE WEB WE WEAVE…..

My legal career was spent in the court room. When ever I would catch a witness in a lie or a party’s case full of lies, I would start my summation to the jury by looking them in the eye and with all seriousness say…..Woe the web we weave when first we seek to deceive.

I would follow it up with the story of throwing a pebble into a still pool of water. The pebble would cause a small circle to surround it. The circle in the water would get bigger and bigger. As a lie got bigger and bigger and took in more people.

Yesterday it was Michael Cohen and Sean Hannity.

Trump’s lies ultimately bring everyone around him down. Including his children.

Will Trump throw them under the bus as he has others? Will he take the rap to save them? Interesting.

Saw Dr. Jones yesterday morning. He scheduled me for an endoscopy and colonoscopy for a week from tomorrow.

I am anxious for the endoscopy. For the past six months, food gets stuck in my throat. Cannot wash it down. Fluid shoots back out my mouth. Takes a bit of gulping to get the food to pass.

Till last night.

I was enjoying lamb chops at the La Trattoria bar. Carrie bartending. Fortunately.

A piece of meat got stuck in my throat. Carrie saw I was in trouble. She came running over and started with back blows moving to the Heimlich. Did not work. Gulping did not work.

I could breath.

I walked out. Gulped for two blocks. Finally the meat moved down.

A relief. The longest it has taken. Thank God I am doing the endoscopy next wednesday. Dr. Jones is aware of my problem and will stretch my throat and esophagus while I am under.

Lunch yesterday after the Dr. Jones visit at Sandy’s Cafe. My favorite snack. Cuban cheese toast with tomato and a large cup of Cuban coffee.

The waitresses at Sandy’s are a happy bunch. They spread that joy to the customers as they wait on them.

Last night Dueling Bartenders. Bobby Nesbitt guest performing. Tom Luna and Rick Dery doing their usual. The three singing a song together outstanding!

Many Bobby Nesbitt friends in attendance. Lynda and Bob Frechette, David, Lisa, etc.

We sang along with Tom, Rick and Bobby.

Loved it!

It was after Dueling Bartenders that I went to La Trattoria for dinner.

Marty Leshaw and I were Key West friends for years. We would meet at the Chart Room and then have dinner together somewhere. Marty left Key West. Returned to his primary residence in Fort Lauderdale.

Marty and I communicate infrequently. I heard from him yesterday. Did I hit 40 yet? Meaning pounds lost. Whatever the inquiry or statement, I always enjoy hearing from Marty. Though we disagreed on almost everything. Especially politics.

I have fond memories of our relationship.

Trump is visiting Key West thursday. For two hours. He flies into Boca Chica. Then he will be part of a caravan of cars taking him to the Truman Waterfront. He is visiting the Joint Interagency Task Force South. A military anti-smuggling center.

Some are thrilled by his visit. Others could care less.

Diana Millikan returns to Key West tomorrow. She e-mailed me she plans to stand on the corner of Truman and White and wave at Trump as he passes. She has been a die hard Trump fan since day one. Part of that 35-40 percent.

Global climate change a concern to us who live on the ocean. We have been warned for several years that the waters will rise and take away some homes built on the water.

Michael Mann is a climatologist.  He says the change is coming and sooner than thought.

All has to do with currents. Southern waters, including the Gulf Stream, will flow northward. The colder deep waters of the north will flow southward.

I do not understand this changes things. The bottom line however is that the scenario will not be good. Our water levels will increase 1.6 feet. Surface temperatures will be warmer for most of the US east coast. Europe will be colder because of changes in the Gulf Stream.

Mann says “…..we’re close to a tipping point…..the changing currents are without precedent…..the event about a century ahead of schedule.”

He also says all this may not happen. That we are dealing with systems we don’t fully understand.

Love the Citizens’ Voice in the Key West Citizen. Readers say it the way it is.

This morning’s column had a note from a local. The iguana problem the subject.

The writer had the solution. Bring in about a hundred Jaguars and mountain lions. The natural enemies of iguanas.

My  thought is the suggestion will help resolve another problem. The too many people on the island problem. Jaguars and mountain lions are the natural enemies of humans, also.

My podcast tonight. Tuesday Talk  with Key West Lou. Join me at 9 my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou. I express my thoughts as to the conduct and sins of many. Guaranteed you will like the show. A quick moving half hour.

Enjoy your day!

 

BUSY…..BOOK SIGNING AND PODCAST

Yesterday, busy. Today, busy. Adrenalin flowing. Ready to go.

Today, the Irma and Me Book Signing. Tonight, my podcast Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Both required preparation. Especially the podcast.

Yesterday was get ready time. Began at 5:30 am.

Got an early start on the day’s blog.

Then an hour getting things ready for today’s book signing. Finding a bag to carry the books, a box to hold cash, a bank run for a roll of nickels and different cash bills, prepare tonight’s Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou show, and I don’t recall what else.

Finished all by 4. I was ready. Almost, still needed today’s blog which I am doing at the moment.

Out for the evening. Needed a drink. Enjoyed one at Catherine’s when I picked her up. Felt better.

First stop was Aqua’s for Dueling Bartenders. Terri performing. Would not have missed it.

Bear greeted me. Getting bigger. He was with George and Art.

Lynda and Bob Frechette at the bar. I went over leaving Catherine at the other bar. Who are you with, Lynda asked. I could not remember Catherine’s name. I was doing good.

Lynda and Bob will be at the book signing.

Dinner afterwards at Antonia’s bar. Nicole bartending. She made my day. Not only is she stopping by the book signing, she has already ordered the book via Amazon.

Finished the evening early. I was tired. Dropped Catherine off and went directly home intending to hop in bed. Changed my mind. Instead prepared notes for the blog I am presently writing.

I received a call from Jean Thornton during the day. She called to wish me well at the book signing.

Jean is an integral part of Irma and Me. It was at her and Joe’s home in Birmingham where I stayed for 12 days having escaped Irma. Louis, six other humans, and three dogs.

The book signing will be sort of a reunion. Five of the others have e-mailed and told me they will be there. The sixth, McKee, also e-mailed. He will not. He is on a cruise somewhere.

Neither will Jean and Joe. They leave from Birmingham today for a one month European cruise. Sounds exciting. Fly to Barcelona and get on a ship. Their home for the next 30 days. Primarily Scandinavian countries. Twenty different ports.

The Irma and Me book signing noon to 3 at Andrews Inn. Located at Zero Whalton Lane. A street running perpendicular to Duval between Truman and Olivia. Across from Viva Cafe.

Tonight at 9 my podcast Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. All done and ready to go. Some interesting topics. Only two involving Trump. I try to get away from Trump in my talks. We get too much of him otherwise every day.

Topics include visits to a few old time Key West bordellos, a discussion concerning Florida beaches which are no longer public, a transgender vote by the people rather than elected officials in Anchorage, the caravan, Syria, and more.

A fast moving half hour. Interesting. Sometimes provocative. Join me. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

My blog for today done! And it is only 8 am rather than 11 am. Last night’s prep helped. I have nothing to do till 11 when  I leave for the book signing.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

29 POUNDS

The world is in upheaval. The U.S., Russia, North Korea, etc. threatening each other. Stormy Daniels causing Trump all kinds of problems. What do I title today’s blog? 29 Pounds!

More important than anything else, the scale this morning. Reflected a solid 29 pound loss. I am thrilled!

I had hung in at 27 pounds forever. Did not think I would ever lose another pound. Dieting in one’s old age calls for patience.

Next goal 30. A nice round number. Then, 40. I suspect it may take till Memorial Day.

Spent a few hours yesterday afternoon working on tonight’s podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Needs more work this afternoon. The show will cover a multitude of worldly sins, interesting information, and whatever strikes my fancy.

The show is only three years old. Acquires more and more listeners every week. Love the numbers! No where as many as this blog. However apparently significant in the podcast field.

Tonight, a first. I am dedicating the show to a particular person.

Join me at 9 my time. A quick moving half hour. Guaranteed you will enjoy. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

First stop last night Aqua. Dueling Bartenders. Tom Luna and Rick Dery. A guest vocalist. Never saw her before. Laura. Young, beautiful, and talented.

Liz sitting nearby. Went over and gave her a hug and kiss. New hairdo. She looked terrific!

Then to Antonia’s. Nicole bartending. Robert came over to say hello. He bartended at Outback for years. Now waitering at Antonia’s. A charming personality. He will do well.

Chatted a bit with a couple several seats away at the bar. In Key West for a month. Staying at Banyan Court. We got into Irma. They were very interested. Believe they will buy Irma and Me.

I used to enjoy stopping in at the VFW Post on North Roosevelt Boulevard. A sandwich, a drink and always good conversation. Irma put a stop to it. Peeled the roof totally off. Someone who saw it happen described the roof peeling back like an onion. Internal damage big time. Insulation and wiring hanging. Water damage.

Has not yet reopened. This morning’s Key West Citizen carried an article announcing the reopening hopefully by Memorial Day.

Whatever date, I am glad it is coming back!

Dusenberry is going home.

He is a 100 pound sub-adult loggerhead sea turtle. He was found off Key Largo in December unable to dive. Taken to the Turtle Hospital in Marathon. Examination revealed he was impacted. Medicines and a good diet fixed him up.

Dusenberry is being returned to the ocean at 10:50 tomorrow morning at Sombrero Beach. Per custom, there will be 100-200 persons cheering off.

Harry Truman loved Key West and Key West loves Harry Truman. The President spent 175 days in Key West over a period of 11 trips.

On this day in 1952, Truman left Key West after spending 3 weeks vacationing at The Little White House.

March Madness is upon us! This weekend the Final Four!

Big time basketball.

The championship game of the first Final Four took place on this date in 1939. The conclusion of the first ever NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

Only 8 teams invited.

Oregon beat Ohio State 46-33.

The tournament has grown. Sixty eight teams now invited. It has become the most popular sporting event after the Super Bowl.

The rich have a new toy. I am talking about the 1 percent. Those that already have private jets, yachts, homes world wide.

Private railroad cars. To transport them from their city homes to their  weekend country homes.

There was a time referred to as the Gilded Age. The very rich had private railroad cars attached to the rear of trains. Those Gilded Age railroad cars valuable today. The 1 percent buying them. Remodeling costs generally $1 million.

Justice has a way of surfacing. Most get theirs in the end.

One of the nation’s largest gun manufacturers was Remington Outdoor Co., Inc. Note the word “was” in the previous sentence. Remington filed for bankruptcy protection sunday. Chapter 11.

Remington owes $950 million. Working out a plan to reduce the debt and turn control of the company to it creditors.

Remington’s business fell dramatically this past year. The reason, Trump’s election.

You would have thought his election would have increased Remington’s business. Not so.

Gun owners traditionally bought big time when anti-gun people were elected. They feared they would not be able to purchase guns and ammunition as they had.

Trump got elected. The fear was gone. He was a gun man! He told the NRA during the campaign they would have a friend in the White House.

Such being the case, gun  people did not purchase that many guns in Trump’s first year. The fear was gone. Their man was in the White House.

Enjoy your day!

 

GROSS DISAPPOINTMENT

I waited for 60 Minutes all week. Finally, last night. Stormy Daniels being interviewed live. Her attorney had kept us on edge for two weeks. Revelations to be made! Facts exposed!

I would describe her appearance as gross disappointment. Her attorney had promised too much and delivered too little.

As a result, my sense is that Daniels’ California civil suit is not strong. Her attorney is trying to force a settlement before depositions.

On the other hand, there is the question as to whether the $130,000 paid was a political contribution. Could involve a violation of the Election Law.

Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Never fails.

Saturday’s March For Our Lives an outstanding success. I thought it difficult for the NRA and gun supporters to counter. I should have known better. NRA supporters came out with a retort yesterday: “Saturday’s student-led March For Our Lives event was nothing more than a globalist-funded communist campaign in which the marchers themselves partook in trampling not only their own constitutional rights but the constitutional rights of their fellow countrymen in an outright push to further ban, suppress, and limit the Second Amendment…..”

Communist supported…..trampling on constitutional rights…..globalist funded.  Strong language. The Titanic going down and its short wave radio not working.

Some of the high schoolers will vote this year. Many more in 2020. All thereafter. The end of the NRA’s influence. Amazing! Brought down by a bunch of kids!

Everyone knows the students were assisted organizationally and with funding. What we saw saturday not possible without both. Why the NRA would complain, I do not understand. They have been taking in mega bucks for years from gun manufacturers and using it to dupe the American public.

Financial supporters of the March included George and Amal Clooney, Oprah Winfrey, Lyft, Women’s March Organizers, and Gabby Gifford’s Courage to Fight Gun Violence. There was a benefit concert Every Town for Gun Safety. A GoFund Me account raised $3.5 million.

Final Four next. Loyola-Chicago, Kansas, Michigan and Villanova. Big time! Exciting!

I was fortunate to attend four Final Fours. Three when Syracuse played, one just for the pleasure of it. Each an experience, each fun.

In March 1920, F. Scott Fitzgerald published his first novel. This Side of Paradise.

He and his wife ran off to Paris thereafter. Fitzgerald became close friends with Ernest Hemingway. They drank their way through the bars of Paris. Still worked, however. While in Paris, Fitzgerald finished The Great Gatsby.

Something I never knew. Fitzgerald was named after his ancestor Francis Scott Key who wrote The Star Spangled Banner.

March 1953 a significant time also. I was a senior in high school. Polio aka infantile paralysis was a dreaded disease. Afflicted many, killed many yearly. Of major concern.

I recall a female high school friend who came down with polio.

She was sent to a special sanatorium high in the Adirondacks for two years till recovered.

Our President at the time Franklin Delano Roosevelt had been struck down with polio in 1921. It left him partially paralyzed the rest of his life.

Fear of the disease came to an end in March 1953 when a Dr. Jonas Salk announced he had discovered a polio/infantile paralysis vaccine. Salk’s vaccine saved thousands from the dreaded disease. To the extent, polio/infantile paralysis is rarely mentioned these days.

Several times over the past few years, I have written and spoke of Afghanistan. Not so much the war itself. Rather the successful and ever growing opium poppy fields which produce heroin. Ninety percent of which ends up on the streets of the U.S.

Rachel Blevins published an article March 25, 2018 concerning the why and where with alls of the problem. She claims the war has made poppy growth possible and imposed on our streets the worst heroin epidemic ever in U.S. history.

It seems the war has contributed to the success of heroin sales. At the time of the 2001 invasion, there were 189,000 heroin users in the U.S. In 2016, the number had increased to 4.5 million.

Heroin deaths are up 533 percent from 2016 alone.

Since 2016, Afghanistan areas under opium poppy cultivation have increased by 63 percent.

Bottom line. The war is protecting and encouraging the poppy growers. When is the last time you heard of a poppy field or poppy growers having been bombed? In a country that has been bombed to hell.

Something is amiss. Money has to be changing hands. In the meantime, we are experiencing the worst opioid epidemic in the history of the U.S.

Dueling Bartenders tonight at Aqua. Love Dueling Bartenders. An opportunity to have a couple of drinks, listen to great music, and sing along when the mood hits me.

Enjoy your day!

I TOLD YOU I WAS SICK

Tombstones tell wonderful stories. History imprinted forever. Especially on Key West head stones.

The one that has always intrigued me, interested me the most, says…..I Told You I Was Sick.

This saturday, the Key West Cemetery is providing 3 guided tours. Ninety minutes each. Do yourself a favor, go. Reservations required.

Spent a couple of hours yesterday afternoon working on Growing Up Italian.

Last night, Dueling Bartenders at Aqua.

Friends galore.

Don and Chris in from Syracuse. They are getting married saturday at the Hyatt. Celebration time! I am invited. I am honored. Only 45 people. Three from Korea. His business partners.

Chris radiant. Always. This time a little more so.

Tom and Fran Dixon in from Buffalo. Only for 3 days. Leave wednesday morning.

Fran mothers me. Takes good care of me. Normally, she brings frozen containers of sauce with meatballs, sausage and pork. This time not frozen. Three canning jars full. No meatballs. She is aware I am on Atkins and did not want to submit me to bread crumbs.

The two couples Syracuse fans. We text each other during games. The object of our conversations last night Syracuse’s success thus far in the NCAA tournament. Exciting!

Lovely Liz at the bar. Met a family from somewhere. Two were Hamilton College grads. Actually, one Hamilton and one Kirkland. Kirkland the ladies part.

Nice people. A couple of interesting Hamilton exchanges.

Key West has been knocked down, destroyed, etc. many times over the years. Hurricanes a problem. In the early years, fires. Building codes either non existent or not as good as today.

On this day in 1923, an unoccupied cigar factory on the corner of White and Newton burned down. The fire spread. Forty three homes were destroyed. Forty families left homeless.

Show of shows tonight! My podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time. A quick and exciting half hour. Join me as I share my opinionated thoughts. About everything from a Key West problem to our national problem Donald Trump. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

I consider New York Governor Andrew Cuomo Presidential timber. I am impressed how he has run New York State. Free tuition at 4 year State colleges, legalized same sex marriage, enacted gun control legislation. He balanced the budget on time during his first year for the first time in many years. Every area of the State has experienced significant development.

A negative is one of his aides was recently convicted of taking a $300,000 kickback. Cuomo was not involved.

It was announced this week Cuomo has primary opposition in his race for reelection.

Recall the movie Sex and the City. One of the four ladies was Cynthia Nixon. She is running a primary against Cuomo. One of her platform items corruption in his administration. I question the validity of the charge as it may personally involves him in any respect.

She has a list of other items. All sound good. Nixon has been active in New York City politics for years. Her other items appear to be New York City needs.

Not enough. There is upstate New York, also. The forgotten relative. Most Governors pay little attention to upstate New York. Cuomo has not. He is responsible for massive development upstate.

If Nixon wishes to succeed, she will have to come out with a for real program for the upstaters.

Trump on a high. Reminds me of a dog after he has done his business. Joyfully bounds around.

Why? He fired Andrew McCabe. News reports suggest he has become emboldened as a result. Accomplished a big thing from his perspective. Can do anything. Knows how to do everything. Does not need the advice of others.

His legal team a spot where he is spreading his wings. Apparently paying less attention to them. He has brought on another attorney. Joseph diGenova.

diGenova many years ago a U.S. Attorney. Today, a Washington attorney who frequently appears on FOX. He has been a part of the FOX group going back 20 or more years.

As does Trump, knows everything. Labeled Comey the “dirtiest cop in America.” Claims Comey destroyed the FBI’s reputation. Believes the Justice Department and Mueller are trying to frame Trump.

Washington attorneys describe him as a “wild card.” A qualification to represent Trump. They are birds of a feather.

Trump has brought  diGenova on board I assume based on diGenova’s appearances and statements made on FOX. Such do not qualify diGenova as the man for Trump. He does not need a TV star. He requires the very best attorney qualified in the areas Mueller is investigating.

My other area of concern is that Trump is apparently now running the legal show. He is not aware of one of the first axioms learned in law school: A lawyer who represents himself has a fool for a client. I adjust it a bit to read…..A person who represents himself is a fool.

A person under investigation lives or dies by his attorney’s judgments, not his own.

Enjoy your day!

TWO NOTEWORTHY EVENTS TONIGHT

Tuesday night always busy in Key West. Two events occur with regularity tuesday evenings. Aqua Idol and Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

Aqua Idol a fundraiser. This year’s beneficiary the Waterfront Playhouse.

Aqua Idol is Lynda Frechette’s baby. Conceived, organized and directed by her. A tough job to keep going. Requires a slew of good singers willing to perform weekly. Lynda obviously knows what she is doing. Aqua is standing room only every week.

I suggest you get to Aqua by 5:30 if you wish to sit. The seats fill quickly.

The other tuesday event is my podcast. My blog talk radio show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. In its third year, the show’s numbers increase weekly. To the point the show has advertisers. Like GEICO Insurance and Old Navy.

Tuesday Talk is a quick moving half hour of me pontificating on world events. Listeners may not always agree. They return weekly, however.

Join me tonight at 9 my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Last night was Aqua and the Green Parrot. Aqua for Dueling Bartenders. The Green Parrot for dinner. I assume the restaurant next door/attached is now part of the Green Parrot. Whatever, I had dinner there.

Catherine joined me for the evening.

Dueling Bartenders was especially sweet. My beloved Terri White the guest performer. Together with Tom Luna and Rick Dery, the singing was over the top.

I sat with Bear. Except for barking a few times when Terri was singing, he was exceptionally good. Sitting at our able were Catherine, George, Art, and Stacey. At the bar, Liz, David, and Sheila.

Tried Antonia’s and La Trattoria for dinner. No room at the inn. Season packing the restaurants. That is why I ended at the place next door to the Green Parrot. Enjoyed ribs and wings.

Cold again! Another northeaster burying Boston and the Cape. We feel the cold this far south. Never fails to work that way.

Last night 61 again. I still without heat. You could hang meat in my bedroom. The cold will continue today. The high 68. Tonight, 63.

A major announcement just came over TV. Secretary of State Tillerson gone. Trump let him go and replaced him with CIA Director Pompeo.

Tillerson was ineffective. Not a diplomat. An oil man. Not qualified for the position as many Trump Cabinet persons. Tillerson’s main qualification when appointed was that he was a close friend of Putin. He now joins the some dozen other key Trump appointees who have gone along the wayside.

One of Tillerson’s problems is he spoke too candidly for Trump. They were not always on the same page.

Pompeo has all kinds of credentials. Whether the man for job remains to be seen. Pompeo a West Point graduate, Harvard Law graduate and most recently Director of the CIA.

An observation. Perhaps improper. I am not sure. Trump avoids confrontation in certain instances. Like when firing a main support person. Both Comey and Tillerson were out of town when they got the ax. TV is reporting Tillerson first heard of his firing via Twitter.

What happened to our political leaders being Americans first and politicians second? It has been obvious from day one that the House Intelligence Committee in its review of the Trump/Russia/collusion issue has been pro Trump and anti truth. The Committee’s Republican majority concluded yesterday there was no evidence of collusion between Trump’s Presidential campaign and Russia during the 2016 election. Recognizing however that Russia had interfered with the election.

Fortunately, the Mueller investigation remains ongoing. The truth will out.

Trump has appointed a Commission on School Safety. A typical move. He has a pattern of passing the buck rather than making the hard decisions. Commissions and Committees have always been a Washington way of avoiding decision making re sensitive issues.

Trump has appointed Education Secretary Betsy DeVos as Chairman. Her intellectual level is on a par with Sarah Palin’s. DeVos was interviewed a few days ago on national television. Her responses to questions shocking. Evidenced a definite lack of mental acumen.

Woe the safety issue and woe the education of American children.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

SPRING BREAK STORY

Spring break was not for me during my college days. Who could afford it!

My education however did provide many “spring breaks” world wide later in life.

Several years ago, I experienced a sort of spring break. Reported the story in my blog at the time. An amusing episode.

This has been spring break week in Key West. It brought a Key West spring break experience to mind. Several years ago, a couple were visiting. We were out on Duval one night. Took them to Irish Kevin’s. A young people’s place. This old man especially liked it because the young ladies were often induced to take to the stage and expose their breasts.

The place was crowded with spring breakers. My friends my age. We worked our way to the bar and ordered drinks. The college students were pleasant. They engaged us in conversation. One asked what we were doing in Key West during spring break? What were we doing in Irish Kevin’s?

I lied. I did not tell them about the bare breasts. Instead, I responded, “We’re retired senior citizens who returned to college to get our degrees…..Decided we should do spring break, also!”

We were the heroes of the night! Could not buy a drink. Spent three hours with the kids having fun. Just college students hanging out together.

Another good sunday yesterday.

Spent the afternoon watching the PGA golf tournament. Tiger Woods was playing. His best performance in recent years!

He came in second. One stroke behind. His putting failed him. Otherwise, he would have won by several strokes.

The man who went years without missing a putt under 5 feet, missed a few yesterday. Two from 5 feet. Two more from 2-3 feet. His age? He is 42. Or, does he need to work at it more?

Interestingly, he sunk 2 or 3 putts from the 20 foot range.

Later in the afternoon to Hot Dog Church. Pastor Lauri as usual presiding. George, Art, Donna, Terri, and Bear already at the bar.

Glad I went! Met two former Syracuse University people.

First, Stacey Veeder. She took the empty seat at the bar next to me. My last name sounded familiar to her. Not from Key West. Where? From the recesses of her mind. She spent most of her career working in administration at Syracuse University. I was active with the University during certain of her years.

She was married. To a man. Surprised me. Hot Dog Church is a lesbian gathering. I was there by special invitation.

Married if I recall correctly 37 years. To Steve Wexler. Steve was a professor at the Syracuse College of Law for 21 years. Beginning in 1979.

She telephoned Steve to come over so we could meet. We did for a short time. We had not met during his teaching years. I graduated in 1960. However, I was a member and then chairman of the Law School Board of Visitors for many years. There was much we could talk about.

Hopefully, I will run into Stacey and Steve tonight at Dueling Bartenders.

Terri sings tonight at Dueling Bartenders. Tom, Rick and Terri will blow the walls out with their powerful renditions of yesterday tunes.

Speaking of Syracuse, the team made it to the NCAA Tournament. The listing announced last night. Sixty eight teams invited. Syracuse #68. Who cares? We made it! That’s enough!

I was surprised. Still maintain we do not belong. God was good however and snuck us in.

He will be even better if He permits us to make it to the Final Four.

Dinner last night was at Donna and Terri’s. George, Art and I enjoyed Chinese take out with the ladies.

For the past two years, I have frequently written about robots. Always lecturing they are coming and we are not preparing for them.

Flippy was introduced to Pasadena hamburger lovers as Flippy the Burger Flipping Robot recently. He can cook 2,000 burgers a day. He was introduced by the Cali Group that operates several hundred fast food burger places.

Flippy lasted two days. He did his job. The support staff did not. They could not. I refer to the humans who prepare the patties for the grill and those who pile on lettuce and other fixins’.

The humans could not keep up with Flippy.

Flippy is on leave while experts look the situation over to decide how humans have to function to keep up with Flippy.

Franklin Delano Roosevelt communicated with citizens via a method which became known as a fireside chat. No television back then. Only radio. The President would speak to the nation in comforting tones and keep them updated on what was happening. His first  fireside chat on this day in 1933. A time of serious economic distress. Thirty percent unemployment. People scared.

Trump’s rallies are Roosevelt’s fireside chats. In form only. Not substance.

Trump rants and raves, demeans, criticizes, swears, etc. Far from Presidential. Not in the style of real leaders like Roosevelt, Kennedy, Johnson and Reagan.

His bully tough guy performances clear evidence the man lacks Presidential qualities.

Irma and Me doing well. I am impressed with the sales. My first book was a disaster sales wise. Those of you who have not yet ordered the book, please do so. You will enjoy!

Irma and Me is available through Amazon.com and Barnesandnoble.com.

Enjoy your day!

DUELING BARTENDERS THE BEST LAST NIGHT

NO BLOG TOMORROW. I have an early morning physical scheduled.

Some evenings are better than others. Last night was the case. Dueling Bartenders outstanding. Tom Luna, Rick Dery, and this year’s Fantasy Fest Queen at their best.

Catherine with me. Many friends. Liz back from a Tampa Hospital. Looking better than ever! Josefina with her. Also her friend George who is visiting. A former law school Dean as was Liz. June. Joe Lyles.

Dined at the bar at Antonia’s. Lamb chops. Delicious!

Diet stuck at 20 pounds (my scale). Probably 24 on heart doctor’s. I see my internist for a physical in the morning. He will not believe the loss.

Two biggies tonight.

Syracuse/Wake Forest at 7. The first round of the ACC Tournament. Being played at  Brooklyn’s Barclay Center. Syracuse should win. Has to win tonight and two more games in the tournament to have a shot at a NCAA Tournament bid.

I can watch the game at 7. When finished at 9, I shall hurry to my office to do my 9 o’clock scheduled podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Everything on the agenda for discussion. Join me for a quick moving half hour of what I think about this and that. You may not agree. Guaranteed you will find it interesting, however. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Key West was the home of cigar making for more than 50 years. Nearness to Cuba the reason. Workers immigrating from Cuba to work in Key West cigar factories. Cuban tobacco considered the best in the world easily available from Havana.

Cigar making in Key West hit its zenith in 1890. Over 100 million cigars made.

There is a small cigar park behind the First State Bank Building on Simonton. Properly called Gato Park. E. H. Gato was the owner of one of the largest cigar making operations in Key West.

A cigar has stood in Gato Park for years. It needed repair. Work done. The reconstructed cigar will be unveiled at a ceremony wednesday night beginning at 5 and running to 8. Cigars, rum, and Cuban dancing on the agenda in addition to the unveiling.

The newly restored cigar sculpture is purported to be the world’s largest.

Another party friday evening. This one bigger. Going to be huge. Kate Miano’s campaign kickoff event. Kate is running for Mayor.

Six friday evening at the Gardens. Guaranteed fun.

I have been avoiding this issue. However it is time to comment. Perhaps it will generate discussion and responsive comments.

Religion is dying. No question about it. It has been gradually dying for more than 50 years. Churches, synagogues, etc. closing. Diminishing attendees.

Houses of worship today the home of the elderly. Nostalgic in their beliefs. The young at the other end of the spectrum don’t go to a church of any kind. Some do not believe. Others consider religion not relevant. More and more persons becoming atheists.

Christianity is at its root idolatry. People turn from their idols when it stops raining.

Will the drift from God and religion be cyclical? I don’t know. It should be. Most things are. Perhaps at some point man will rediscover his need for an Almighty.

I close with Three Trump items.

Trump irrationally burst out his tariff program thursday. A nonsensical position born of ignorance.

Many claim a tariff war will cost the U.S. jobs. One example has already surfaced.

Sweden’s Electrolux announced in January it was doing an expansion to its Springfield, Tennessee plant. Adding on 400,000 square feet. Cost $250 million. Work to begin in the Fall.

Following Trump’s erratic tariff announcement thursday, Electrolux announced it was putting the expansion on hold. It will not proceed till it knows the figures the Trump plan will kick out and whether it is financially feasible to proceed. Electrolux believes Trump’s decision will give an economic advantage to foreign manufacturers.

Jobs gone! No construction workers! No new employees working in the added 400,00 square feet.

The way to bring jobs back to America, Mr. President!

Electrolux likes doing business in Tennessee. It has another plant in Anderson which makes Frigidaire Freezers. Electrolux began a $200,000 million expansion of the Anderson plant one year ago. The expansion will continue as the addition is near completion.

Birds of a feather flock together. Netanyahu was in Washington yesterday visiting with Trump. Both are under investigation. We know of Trump’s problems. Netanyahu’s involve corruption, bribery, and fraud.

As Trump leads us down roads that scare me, Netanyahu is no different. He has changed Israel. In most instances, Israel is no longer the victim. It is the perpetrator.

The U.S. will be constructing a new building to serve as the new embassy in Jerusalem. It is a temporary facility. Intended to be replaced some time in the future with one containing all the knobs and fancy features.

The budget for the temporary/new embassy was submitted to Trump. One million dollars. Trump said too much. He shaved it down to $250,000.

I question how safe our embassy persons will be in the $250,000 edifice. Will sufficient safeguards exist? Will all survive an attack?

Penny pinching at the wrong time and in the wrong place.

Enjoy your day!