TIRED!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tired. Exhausted a better description. I assume from whatever I was given yesterday to knock me out.

I did my Facebook live video first this morning. Key West Lou Live video. Take a look. My ass is dragging.

My tests went so so. Will discuss another time. My throat could not be stretched. A growth. Another test here followed by surgery in Miami. Two polyps at the other end. Everything being biopsied.

Throat appears to be a concern. I am not bothered yet. Will describe actual problem when my head clears. I have to believe someone out there has had it and can share their experience with me. Paperwork said only 2 in 100,000 develop the problem.

Great, me!

Fire in Big Pine still alive. Fire behavior yesterday described as moderate with some spotting.

Greece! Anna’s trip this year will include a week in Mikonos with her lawyer son. She sent me pics of the villa where they will be staying. Typical Greece. Magnificent!

Mike Mulvaney is a whore. Previously an important Congressman. Then Budget Director under Trump. Now Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

He spoke yesterday before a group of bankers. Told them in effect that access costs money. He does not talk to those who do not contribute. He may talk to certain of those who do contribute.

Play for pay! One of the swamp problems Trump pledged to clean up. He has failed. The swamp problem has become decidedly worse under Trump.

That’s all for today. I am exhausted.

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!

.

 

 

 

WORLD NEEDS MORE BARBARA BUSHES

Three breaking news items last night. The most important and most sad was the death of Barbara Bush.

Wife of one President, mother of another. A class act. An independent women. Wife, mother, grandmother, great grandmother. A political influence in her own way.

The world needs more Barbara Bushes.

Another breaking news item involved a Supreme Court case and Justice Neil Gorsuch. A Trump appointee. Trump’s only appointee so far. A conservative. Tipped the balance of power on the Court to 5-4 in favor of the conservative block.

A good Justice/Judge is one that cannot be depended on to vote the party line, so to speak. Gorsuch has generally been voting with his conservative brethren. Not in the Sessions v. Dimaya decision rendered yesterday.

Gorsuch voted with the liberal block. As a result, the Court struck down a part of one of Trump’s immigration laws having to do with the deportation of illegal immigrants who had criminal records. Thousands of immigrants affected.

Gorsuch wrote a decision saying the law was vague. What is a cime under the statue? Everyone? Traffic offenses?

Gorsuch wrote, “Vague laws invite arbitrary power.” I view Trump as an authoritarian figure. Arbitrariness part of authoritarianism.

Trump had to be upset. I can hear him now. I gave the guy the best job a lawyer can have. Made his career. And he does this to me!

May Trump experience more surprises!

The third breaking news item involved Sean Hannity. Turns out he has more than one Trump attorney. Victoria Toensing and Jay Sekulow have joined the club.

More interesting the nature of the representation.

On May 25, 2017, Toensing and Sekulow jointly wrote a letter to a Tulsa, Oklahoma radio station. They signed the letter as Counsel For Sean Hannity.

A conservative activist had said on a show that Hannity had been “creepy” towards her and invited her to his room.

The Toensing and Sekulow letter was a warning to the radio station to cease and desist from any further comment re the woman’s claims.

The woman’s name was reported.

I care not how many Trump lawyers Hannity uses. Though I do wish he would come clean on an issue that has nothing to do with anything.

By being silent, he may have opened the door to real aggravation. The woman’s statement. Time will tell.

Key West is to be honored tomorrow. Trump is visiting. Only for two hours. He is meeting with a military anti-smuggling group. An in and out trip.

This morning’s Key West Citizen says to expect protests. Meeting places include the White Street Pier and City Hall. Those protesting are asked to dress in black and carry signs.

Key West will not be behaving as One Human Family tomorrow.

KONK Life is a weekly publication. Covers the Keys.

I wrote a column for several years for KONK Life. The Key West Lou COMMENTARY. I considered the column the best writing I did.

I had too much on my plate and stopped doing the column two years ago. I have missed it. I believe I am better organized today.

My first column will be published in the KONK Life edition which hits the stands tomorrow. Concerns the Post Office. I believe the Post Office has been stomped upon in recent years. They are not at fault for today’s Post Office debt and insufficient help. Congress is the culprit.

The article is titled Congress To Blame For Post Office Debt. Eye opening.

Jenna Stauffer is a love of my life. My producer when I did my TV show for 3 years. Taught me everything.

Jenna continues to have a finger here and there in Key West life. One involves videoing for realtors houses they intend to sell. Her work professional. I know. She has videoed me several times over the years and each time I came out looking better than I did.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote of our Revolutionary War in The Midnight Ride Of Paul Revere. He wrote the work in the 1860’s. The ride of Paul Revere took place in the 1775. It involved Concord and Lexington and the beginning of our war for freedom.

Longfellow made Revere hero of the day. He was a hero, though not the only one. There were other riders through the night shouting…..To arms, to arms, the British are coming.

Besides Revere, William Dawes, Samuel Prescott and a Dr. Peterson.

The British captured Revere early in his ride. Questioned him roughly for two hours and then let him go. Dr. Peterson is reported to have completed Revere’s ride.

Dawes was captured also. He escaped by jumping his horse over a stone wall.  Subsequently, he lost his horse and had to walk to Lexington.

Prescott originally was not part of the ride. He was returning from a lady friend’s house at the awkward hour of 1 am. He was recruited for the ride. The British captured him, also. He escaped and rode on to Concord warning Patriots along the way.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

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!

 

CONGRESS TO BLAME FOR POST OFFICE DEBT

After a two year absence, I am returning to write a weekly column for KONK Life. My first article hits the stands wednesday. A timely topic. The Post Office’s debt. Titled: Congress To Blame For Post Office Debt.

Sloan came over around noon yesterday. I could not structure the article on my computer. She got me set up.

I wrote a detailed column concerning the issue. The bottom line is Trump should get off Amazon’s back. Congress the blame. Congress saw a cash cow in 2006 and legislated the scenario leading almost immediately to Post Office insolvency.

Prior to Congress getting greedy, the Post Office was solvent. One year before the legislation in 2005, the Post Office was debt free.

You will enjoy the article. Informative.

My sunday got screwed up. I wanted to do Hot Dog Church, the Chorale and the Gardens. Due to time constraints because of writing the Post Office column, I thought I might only make the Gardens.

I made none.

The Gardens was still an option when I received a call from Donna. Terri was to sing at the Gardens. Terri told me the Gardens was cancelling. A rainstorm coming in at 6.

The rain did not arrive till 7. Heavy, Even at that time would have had a couple hundred people scurrying for cover.

So, I took a nap around 4.

My big evening was James Comey’s interview.

One of the points he drove home was that Trump is not morally fit to be President. I agree. Especially now that “pee sex” is becoming part of the national debate.

How low can political discourse get? Trump brings us to a new level with everything he does.

I discussed the pee sex/morality issue during my Key West Lou Live video on Facebook this morning.

The Cow Key Bridge Race was yesterday. One thousand strong participating. Most costumed.

A new record established for the 300 foot event: 22.2 seconds. The previous was 23.1 seconds.

The athletes guzzled pints of beer the night before preparing for the race.

This morning busy. A business meeting at 10. A doctor visit at 11:15. First meeting preparatory to setting up a colonoscopy and endoscopy. The tests I mind not. It is the prep for the colonoscopy which is bothersome.

Jean Thornton’s trip of trips continues.

Yesterday, she and Joe still in Barcelona. The day began at 7 with a delicious breakfast. Then a brisk morning walk around the ship’s decks watching Barcelona wake up.

At 9:30, a tour of Barcelona with Julio.

Seven mountains surround Barcelona. The bus took them all the way up one. Jean reports the view of Barcelona below amazing!.

Following the bus tour, Jean and Joe took a walk around the old Gothic quarter. Discovered an old Cathedral and Roman ruins. Then discovered the famous Las Rambla Boulevard.

They lucked out. Ran into a political demonstration. Hundreds marching and chanting in support of Catalan independence. Flags, yellow attire.

Lunch time. Stopped at a tapas restaurant. Standing outside waiting for a table.

Jean and Joe must look like rich Americans or stupid tourists. A woman tried to pickpocket Joe. His turn.

He felt someone bump him. Felt a hand go into his back pocket. Fortunately, his money was in a pouch on his stomach.

Joe turned. Saw a nicely dressed woman. She immediately pointed forward. Joe looked ahead. When he turned back, she was gone. Lost in the crowd.

The story gets more interesting.

Immediately, a young nervous man was upon Jean and Joe. Flashed a badge quickly. Started asking about the confrontation. He was going to report the incident.

Jean and Joe wary by this tine. When the man asked Joe for ID, he said bring me a uniformed police officer. With that the man went one way and Jean and Joe the other.

The found another restaurant down a pedestrian walkway. After being assured there were no pickpockets, they were seated. Enjoyed tapas and wine.

On the walk back to the ship detoured onto a side street. A street that once housed Paul Guell’s private residence. The house was one of architect Gaudi’s famous works. Jean described the house as amazing.

Then back to the ship. A safety drill. Following which they set sail for Cartagena.

Between jet lag and a lot of walking, the Thorntons were dead. It was early to bed for the both of them.

The Trump administration announced yesterday additional sanctions on Russia. Sanctions on Russian companies and persons who were involved in making or helping with the chemical gas dropped on Syria.

I don’t know if I approve. We hit Syria with over a 100 missiles. Now chastise Russia with these sanctions?

I see John Bolton’s influence. Hit, hit, hit.

Russia is only a second or third rate nation military wise. However, Russia has a ton of nuclear weapons. The situation should not be aggravated more than it is. The U.S. made its point with the missile attack.

Sanctions can lead to war. Any war between the U.S. and Russia would be fought on U.S. soil also and affect our 300 million plus citizens very personally.

On this day in 1917, Vladimir Lenin returned from exile to Russia. He was the head of the Red Bolshevik Party. He returned home to take rein of the Russian Revolution. The Revolution up to that point was led by Alexander Kerensky and the White Bolshevik Party who were doing an ineffective job.

Lenin took over. Kerensky’s life as in danger. He fled Russia.

Many years later, I was a student in college taking courses in Russian history from Kerensky. It was exciting to hear first hand the happenings and intricacies of 1917.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

SESSIONS’ NAMESAKE GENERAL BEAUREGARD FIRED ON FORT SUMTER

On this day in 1861, the Civil War began. The Confederates bombarded Fort Sumter. By the next morning, Union forces were beaten and surrendered the Fort.

The Confederate forces were led by General P.G.T. Beauregard.

Beauregard a lovely name of the old South.

Attorney General Sessions’ full name is Jefferson Beauregard Sessions. Sessions is named after his father whose parents gave him Beauregard as a middle name.

Not all Confederates supported the plan to bombard Fort Sumter. One in opposition was Confederate Secretary of State Robert Toombs. Toombs wrote Confederate President Jefferson Davis: “You will only strike a hornet’s nest. Legions now quiet will swarm out and sting us to death. It is unnecessary. It puts us in the wrong. It is fatal.”

Toombs thought negotiation could resolve any problems and that the Union would accept secession of the Southern states. He also believed the manufacturing power of the North would ultimately bury the agrarian South.

I mention Toombs’ words because they are similar to the purported words of the Japanese Admiral who lead the assault on Pearl Harbor. Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto is claimed to have said, “I fear all we have done is to awake a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”

Many believe Kumamoto so spoke. Historians disagree. His words actually film dialogue. The Admiral and his quote part of the movies Tora, Tora, Tora and Pearl Harbor.

Last night began with the Sons and Daughters of Italy dinner meeting.

One of the members Mac cooked. Chicken marsala and pasta. Delicious!

Mac has played a special part in the lives of Robert and Lisa. For seven years, I engaged Robert to play Santa Claus for them.

A great Santa Claus!

Robert and Ally are now too old to believe in Santa Claus. I intend to have Mac join Robert, Ally and me at some point for lunch.

A notable experience in the making! How many kids have the opportunity to meet Santa Claus years later when they no longer believe?

Headed over to the Chart Room afterwards. John bartending. David and another at the bar. The other Robert Coburn. Robert one of the other authors at the books signing two days ago.

We had never met before two days ago. We greeted each other last night like long lost friends.

Robert started writing five years ago as I did. He also is 82. I am one month older. He will be 83 in August and I in July.

We had a good time.

Robert a snowbird. His home in California’s Carmel. A lovely place. He is on a plane this morning to Carmel. He returns to Key West in June.

The Key West Citizen runs a daily column titled Citizens Voice. A place where people can complain/compliment. Mostly complaints.

A local apparently wanted to reflect on Key West sins. He wrote that as he ran a stop sign on his bicycle, he saw a man using a leaf blower to remove iguanas and chickens from a native tree he was about to cut down. The tree was located near the amphitheater where he had earlier heard the Navy loudspeaker booming. All this made him think about the snowbirds in illegal short term rentals.

Judge Robert Cical. An example of a life destroyed.

Judge Cical a jurist on New York’s Suffolk County District Court.

He became addicted to his 23 year old female neighbor’s dirty panties. He was breaking into her next door house to steal them. He was caught. Some of the panties in his pocket.

He has been arrested. His defense…..an urge made him do it.

Sexual predilections common today with many elected officials. Beginning with the President and working down.

I have revived my video Key West Lou Live on Facebook. Did my second show this morning. Discussed the new toy of the rich. Private railroad cars.

Join me at your convenience. Available any time of the day. Two-three minutes of interesting chat.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

FLORIDA PUBLIC BEACHES NO MORE

Strange laws are made. For strange purposes. By strange men.

Most Florida beaches have been public like forever. Now a law has been passed. One whereby beachfront property owners can kick people of the beaches.

The new law recognizes beachfront property owners to have claim to “the land above the mean high-water tide level.” Means private property beach owners can kick the public off beaches that heretofore were public.

The power behind the new law the rich. Wealthy beachfront homeowners and hotel owners.

Governor Scott owns a home on the beach in Naples. He was not concerned . He indicated people should not worry….rich people were unlikely to abuse their new powers.

As good as an assurance that it will never snow again in the Arctic.

Every now and then a person makes a special connection with Key West. Ernest Hemingway and Jimmy Buffett for example. Most recently, Diana Nyad.

Diana is a long distance swimmer. In 2013, she swam from Cuba to Key West. No easy task. Ever since, there has been a marriage between Diana and Key West.

She did not establish a residence. However does visit frequently. Key West honored her accomplishment with a memorial at the beach.

Irma knocked the hell out of certain parts of the lower keys. Many still recovering. Easy to understand when one realizes that 4,000 plus residential dwellings were destroyed in the keys as a whole.

Diana is in Key West for a month. Together with a group of friends. All runners, not swimmers. They are presently working every day along side Habit for Humanity repairing Irma damaged homes. Presently in the Big Pine area.

Key West showed its love to Diana. She is returning it ten fold.

Stability is lacking in our government. Tariff wars and sanctions lead to fighting wars.

Japan a perfect example. President Roosevelt was squeezing Japan in the time before Pearl Harbor. Japan had invaded China. Roosevelt wanted Japan out of China.

Japan a big importer of oil. Could not survive without oil. Roosevelt put the squeeze on Japan by placing an embargo on oil that normally would go to Japan from various parts of Asia. Plus, other sanctions.

Japan said…..Up yours! Pearl Harbor resulted.

Roosevelt was successfully choking Japan economically. Japan could have capitulated and agreed with Roosevelt’s terms which included Japan’s total withdrawal from China. Or, Japan could have taken the position you cannot do this to us and gone to war.

The answer we all know.

World War II resulted in a marriage of three nations. Germany, Italy and Japan. All fascist nations.

The Democracies plus Russia won World War II. Russia an immediate problem. However the Democracies kept Russia in tow.

In April 1945, Hitler committed suicide in a Berlin Bunker. Mussolini’s corpse was hung upside down at a gas station in Milan 2 days earlier. Following the War, Tojo was executed by hanging for war crimes.

Fascism for all intents and purposes was dead. Till recent years. It has returned. Big time. Trump the Pied Piper.

Former Secretary of State Madeline Albright wrote an interesting Op-Ed in the New York Times 4/6/18 re the issue of fascism titled: Will We Stop Trump Before It’s Too Late.

Some countries were authoritarian leaning before Trump. Some since. Trump most definitely authoritarian. Another way of describing a fascist.

Other world leaders say if Trump can be a dictator of sorts, why can’t I? Leaders in Hungary, the Philippines, Poland and Turkey. Moves toward fascist states in Egypt, Syria and Venezuela. Russia under Putin already there.

Albright wrote that fascism on “the world stage is enhanced by the volatile Presidency of Donald Trump.”

I started this part of the blog discussing sanctions and tariffs being economic wars leading to fighting wars. China today is the U.S.’ primary adversary in an economic war. China a tough adversary. Would never even think of capitulating. Face too important.

So China will do everything to win the economic war Trump has guided us into with China.

Gao Feng, spokesman for the Chinese Ministry of Commerce, said recently, “We will not start a war, we will definitely fight back…..No options will be ruled out.”

Feng was speaking of tariffs. However, the tariff war of today can easily turn into a fighting war tomorrow.

And who would we have to thank? Donald Trump!

A message to T-Shirt Jordan. Please send me your full name and address.

Forget not my Irma and Me book signing tuesday noon to 3 at Andrews Inn, Zero Whalton Lane, Key West.

Enjoy your day!

 

BLOOD ON THE SAND

Tyranny abounds. It begins in the White House.

Tyranny has many definitions. Basically, government or a ruler gone amiss. I selected three which fit Trump: Cruel, unreasonable or arbitrary use of power or control…..Cruel and oppressive government or rule…..Unjustly severe government on the part of any ruler.

Government under Trump moves fast. Every day something new. Everything an immediate problem. It is the immediacy which concerns me at the moment.

Government used to be a studied drawn out affair. Issues were discussed and analyzed. The President spoke with Congress. Congress spoke with the President. Congress debated. Etc.

No more. An issue hits today. Requires resolution yesterday. No debate, no thought entering into the process.

The United States is a nation with roughly 12 million illegal immigrants at the present time. In the last 48 hours, we have been hit with another and different immigration problem. One involving 1,200 people.

Trump has announced he is calling in the military. The National Guard. He is already working with the Governors of the States involved.

The “caravan” from Honduras and Guatemala the meager 1,200. Consists of men, women and children. Families. Videos on TV show women carrying small children. Walking from Central America to the U.S. border.

Some will seek asylum. The legal approach. Others will try to sneak over the border.

Trump is rabble rousing the public. He is gearing up like a major invasion is in the making which has to be defended against. He is preparing for a war on a small number of poor people.

I fear blood on the sands at the border. Blood that will also be on Trump’s hands.

We are told the National Guard will have no physical contact with the immigrants nor will they process them at the border. The purpose of the National Guard will be to provide  surveillance via air and through camera monitoring of the border.

I don’t buy it.

Too much man power. I feel the worst will result.

A few observations.

It has been reported that Trump decided to call in the military without advising his advisers. They were caught by surprise.

Where is the money coming from to finance what is about to happen? The budget for $1.3 trillion was approved only two weeks ago. Not in the budget.

You have to give credit where credit is due. Trump has acted with expediency. Swifter than he did with Puerto Rico following the hurricanes. He recognizes value. The border in this instance more important than the lives of hundreds of thousands still suffering in Puerto Rico.

I received a sad telephone call at 5 yesterday afternoon. My cousin Theresa had died. I cried quite awhile. Tears in my eyes as I type this.

Theresa roughly my age.

We grew up in the same houses. First, the three story six family house in East Utica. Theresa lived in the first floor rear apartment. I in the third floor front.

My parents bought a two family home in 1941. Soon thereafter, Theresa, her parents and sisters moved into the upstairs flat.

We grew up together. Like brother and sister.

I have not seen Theresa in 15 years. Families grow and move on. Marriages and children occur. The children have children. Some family members move from their place of birth to other parts of the country.

We see each other no more. The last time I saw Theresa was 15 years ago in the parking lot of a supermarket in Utica.

Never the less, I love Theresa as much today as when we lived in the two homes and when last we met in the supermarket parking lot 15 years ago. Life moving on separated us physically, but not in the heart.

Lunched with Guy de Boer tuesday at Harpoon Harry’s. His beard large. He could easily be taken even in every day clothes as Santa Claus.

Guy is publisher of KONK Life and KONK Life E-Blast. Guy got me started in writing and radio many years ago. For years I wrote the Key West Lou COMMENTARY for KONK Life.

I am returning to write the weekly column in two weeks. Why? I have missed it. It was a place where I could pontificate to my heart’s content on one issue. The only difference this time is that the one issue will be limited to 500 words.

Irma and Me and me will shortly undergo a new experience. A book signing. I never did one. The book signing is next tuesday April 10th. At the Andrews Inn at Zero Whalton Lane in Key West. Whalton Lane is a side street off Truman between Duval and Whitehead. Time, noon to 3.

Three other authors will be signing books. A speaker is scheduled to do a reading.

Come join us.

Last night dinner at Donna and Terri’s. A good time as usual. Got to see Bear again. It had been two weeks. I was amazed at how he has grown.

Donna and I spent three hours after dinner working on a trailer/ad piece and poster for the book signing. The lady is talented!

Enjoy your day!

EASTER SUNDAY

Matthew 20:19…..On the third day he will be raised to life.

Luke 24…..He is not here, he is risen.

Such Easter Sunday’s religious joyous connotation. There also is another joyous one. In a popular sense. Best exemplified by Irving Berlin’s 1933 Easter Parade: In your Easter bonnet, with all the frills upon it, you’ll be the grandest lady in the Easter Parade.

I used to believe death was the only constant. Life has taught me otherwise. Change is a constant, also. Nothing remains the same. Nothing is as it was.

Easter Sunday attire is reflective of change. Big time. Mike Ragland is a retired police officer living in the Rome, Georgia area. He recently wrote a change type article for the Rome News Tribune titled “In Your Easter Bonnet.”

I have combined some of my thoughts with his for today’s blog.

The tale of Easter Sunday attire begins with Constantine I. Emperor of Rome in the early fourth century. He ordered his subjects to dress in their finest clothes and parade in honor of Christ’s Resurrection.

His decree developed with time.

In Tudor days, superstition originated which claimed that unless a person had new homespun cloth available at Easter, moths and crickets would eat his old clothes.

The Irish added a vestige that stated, “For Christmas, food and drink; for Easter, new clothes.”

A 15th century proverb from Poor Richard’s Almanac stated that if on Easter Sunday some part of the outfit was not new, one would not enjoy good luck during the year.

German settlers in Pennsylvania as early as 1782 paraded on Easter Monday. Easter Monday was widely celebrated as a holiday. The parading continued for over a century.

Then came the big one!

In 1870, ladies of congregations along New York’s Fifth Avenue began decorating churches with fresh flowers to commemorate Easter Sunday. A New York newspaper noted over half the female congregation members were decked out in their best finery while so doing.

A few years later, ladies and their escorts began walking to other churches to view floral arrangements and to be seen. The strolling area extended from 49th Street to 57th Street on Fifth Avenue.

By 1900, Easter Sunday  was rivaling Christmas as a merchant’s dream and was spreading to other cities.

Irving Berlin’s 1933 Easter Parade glorified the day as it had become. Fifteen years later, Judy Garland and Fred Astaire made the movie Easter Parade. One of the most profitable movies made to that time.

I am 82. In my youth, the whole family dressed on Easter Sunday. Where affordable, of course. I first noticed the everyone dressing up thing during World War II when I was 5-10 years old.

We dressed for church. Walked to and back from church as a family. Everyone smiling and exchanging hellos with neighbors and friends.

Followed by Easter Sunday dinner. Exceeded only by Christmas dinner.

The ladies wore hats. New ones, big ones, little ones, frilly and flowered.

I recall Easter Sundays in the 1960’s. Married with four little ones. We all dressed, went to church, and then to a huge family dinner.

The historical Easter Sunday and the one I knew is no more. A thought to be constant having disappeared. No one dresses as they did. Hats, what hats? Few families go to church together. Few go to church. The big meal, rare.

I am glad I was fortunate to have lived through those times. The memories real and warm.

My friends, whatever way you celebrate Easter Sunday, whatever you wear, whatever you eat, enjoy the day. This is what it is. Not bad, not as good, just the way it is.

Happy Easter!

 

 

STATIONS OF THE CROSS REINACTED

Christ lived, died, and was resurrected.

Catholics believe He was crucified yesterday, lies entombed in a rock cave with a large rock blocking the entrance today, and will rise from the dead tomorrow.

Tomorrow being Easter Sunday.

Current writings by sociologists and political scientists suggest religion is dying. I see it in my Catholic religion. Churches closing, Catholic schools disappearing, very few women entering the nunnery, priests a problem unto themselves, etc.

Then an occurrence. One that makes me question the premise that religion is dying.

Yesterday in Portland at the Sacred Heart/St. Dominic Parish Church, the Stations of the Cross  were performed. Part of Good Friday activities.

Normally, the Stations of the Cross involve a priest and two altar boys/girls going to each of the 14 Stations and reciting what occurred.

The Portland Church enacted the 14 Stations.

Participants were dressed in the garb of 33 AD. Roman soldiers in dramatic red and gold uniforms. An estimated 100 parishioners in the dress of 33 AD. The cross was large and wood. There even was a replica of a stone burial chamber.

The place Jerusalem. The Stations beginning with Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane. Ending with Him being laid to rest in a tomb of stone.

The parish an immigrant one. The people poor. They come to the United States from other parts of the world. They bring their religion with them. The Stations were recited in French, Spanish and English.

Makes me wonder whether I have been correct in assuming religion is dying. The experts write it is. Universities teach it.

Could it be that only those that need God believe in Him? Did we in the U.S. and other advanced countries become too intelligent and too affluent forgetting Him?

I do not know. But how religion is handled in the Portland Church causes me to stop and think.

Seder last night. With Donna’s family and friends. At her daughter Stacey’s home. Thirty two in all. From 3 to 82. Guess who was 82?

I have been celebrating Seder with them for many years. Always a warm family event.

My dinner companion was Terri. We sat next to each other. Her eyes failing more rapidly than anticipated.

Love the lady!

A unique experience at lunch time. Stopped in Sandy’s Cafe. There was my grandson Robert and a lady friend. A girl friend. The two enjoying lunch.

Robert handled introductions well. Was not flustered. His lady friend a bit intimidated.

Robert has gone to another level in my mind. No longer a boy. He is a young man. He will be 14 in two months, in high school in August, college in 4 years.

It was only yesterday Robert was born. Lisa insisted I remain for the birth. Her husband holding one leg up and I the other. Yelling at Lisa to push while Lisa was responding with a loud I can’t do this!

Three hours later Robert was on a helicopter to Miami Children’s Hospital. He was born with cancer of the liver. The tumor larger than his liver. Two major surgeries the first 8 days of his life.

God is good. All is well today. And…..He has a girl friend!

The Sons and Daughters of Italy have a scholarship fund. One of their fundraisers is a bocce event. Tonight from 5:30-9:30. At the bocce courts across from the White Street Pier.

Come join us. I will be cooking sausage and hots dogs and teaching bocce to novices.

A fun evening. Cost $20 for adults and $10 for children.

I will be rushing home right after the event. The Final Four begins tonight. I should be able to catch the last game.

World population grows. The scientists tell us at some point there will not be enough food to feed everyone. It is therefore important that we develop alternative ways to grow/create foods. The laboratories of the world become important for this.

Zen Honeycutt published an interesting article on the problem in ECO Watch 3/27/18. The work was limited to Monsanto, glyphosate, herbicides, and pesticides.

I sometimes hate Monsanto for what they do. Other times, I recognize the cause of feeding the world’s peoples is an overwhelming task not without pitfalls.

Glyphosate is bad stuff found in Monsanto’s Roundup. It is also a part of other herbicides and pesticides.

Glyphosate has been discovered in certain wines and beers world wide. Some in popular U.S. brands. All U.S. brands are moving rapidly to change over and use other herbicides and pesticides.

The article makes reference to a Save the Children 2013 report. The report indicated the U.S. has 50 percent more infant deaths on day one of life than all other developed countries involved. The question raised was whether such was due to the widespread use of herbicides and pesticides like Roundup.

Enjoy your day!