REPUDIATE OR VALIDATE

Sixteen days to elections. The midterm perhaps the most important in U.S. history. In less than 2 years, Trump has taken us down a dark road. Evil at every turn.

Time to save the country. In the manner prescribed in the Constitution. The ballot. Vote!

Vote not as a Republican or Democrat. Vote as an American. To save our country.

The Republicanism Trump proclaims is not that your fathers knew. It is different. Tending to fascism and dictatorship.

Stand together. Republicans swallow your pride and vote for a Democratic Congress. Your vote must be cast to repudiate Trump. To vote Republican, is to validate him.

Trump has begun making immigration an up front issue again. A “caravan” of 4,000 has left Guatemala and Honduras and is on its way to the U.S. They are escaping death.

Trump says he will send the U.S. Army to the border to stop them. He also continues to believe separating children from parents will eventually put a damper on immigration efforts.

Does Trump ever wonder why people would walk 2,000 miles to reach the U.S.? Things must be extremely bad for them to undertake such a trip.

What happened to…..”Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free?”

My mother and my four grandparents came from Italy. All poor. Peasant stock. “The wretched refuse of your teeming shores.” They yearned for the better life. For themselves and their children born and to be born. “Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

The 4,000 walking the 2,000 miles to our southern border a humanitarian crisis. Our borders should be open and not closed to them. The U.S. once took in masses in greater numbers from Ireland and Italy. They should do the same today for those soon to be knocking on our door.

One of Trump’s quirks is name calling. He finds a name for anyone he dislikes or disagrees with. I thought the names flowed freely from his demented mind. Turns out they are crafted and planned.

It has been reported Horseface for Stormy Daniels was practiced in the White House by Trump. He went around asking people what they thought.

Apparently as President he had nothing better to do at the time.

Then there is Jamal Khashoggi. First, the Saudis cut off his fingers. Then decapitated him. Concluded by using a chain saw to cut his body into parts.

Trump is not disgusted, not infuriated. More concerned with “friendship” of a country some consider an enemy and with money. The deplorable acts committed upon Khashoggi’s body cannot and should not be tolerated by any civilized person. Yet in his own fashion, Trump does.

I share these most recent examples of Trump actions to give further evidence of the road the U.S. is on. My friends one and all, vote Democratic next month. Repudiate Trump. Validate him not. Save our country in the process.

Yesterday, a full one. A haircut with Lori. Followed by lunch at Sandy’s Cafe. Last night, Hard Rock Cafe and Chart Room.

Donna and Terri had me as their guest at Hard Rock. Enjoyed a large rack of ribs and the good company of my lesbian wives.

Stopped by the Chart Room on the way home. Visited with the new bartender Tammy. So lovely! Soft spoken. Sweet.

The Chart Room is her second job. Her first, the Garden of Eden.

Ollie was at the bar. A while since we last had run into each other.

Ollie’s full name is Oliver Kofoid. Why I share this with you, I am not sure. The name and the man do not fit.

Ollie is friendly and witty. A good guy. Community oriented. A citizen and scientist.

Ollie began his early life by getting kicked out of high school. Never returned. Eventually was able to get into a college. Earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Environmental Science.

Today in his 50’s, Ollie has worked at the Key West Water Treatment Plant more than 20 years. The operator of the plant is OMI which is part of Jacobs Engineering. Ollie is a Lead Operator. A position of some importance.

He was dressed in his Coast Guard Blues last night. Ollie is an officer in the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. Two rows of ribbons on his chest.

He has refereed soccer and served as a lacrosse official for Key West schools for years. He is President of his condo association. Ran twice for a seat on the Mosquito Control Board. Lost both times. Why I do not understand.

Ollie dislikes mosquitoes. Seriously. Considers them a plague.

Ollie has a strange sense of humor. He deals with sewage. He once had tee shirts made and gave them out to his friends. Inscribed thereon: “Input From Every Asshole In Town.”

Irma did a number on the wastewater treatment plant Ollie is responsible for. He and several others recently accepted on behalf of their company an award for their performance during the hurricane.

The generator had failed. Ollie and his team effected emergency repairs and kept things running. Critical wastewater and storm water services as a result continued till a new generator arrived. Property and the environment were protected big time because of their efforts.

The National Water Environmental Federation recently gave the Key West Wastewater Treatment Operators its highest award: The Water Heroes Award for going ABOVE & BEYOND.

Lynda and Bob Frechette are back in town. Welcome! You were missed!

Tonight, Goombay. I meet Jean Thornton at 7 at Bourbon Street to begin what I know will be a festive evening.

Enjoy your day!

 

KEY WEST BEWARE…..GILLEAN AND ROZALYN IN TOWN

Met them last night! Two lovelies from Virginia Beach! Gillean and Rozalyn!

At the Blue Macaw.

Lovely fails to describe them sufficiently. Beautiful! Early 30’s. Arrived yesterday. Staying till tuesday. Guarantee they will leave their imprint on Key West.

Gillean in marketing. Rozalyn a nurse.

They already had a list of must do/see things. Garden of Eden at the top of the list. Gillean can’t wait to go topless. Excited.

Both experienced divers. Plan on exploring the reef.

I suggested several places to play, eat and drink. Rozalyn put them all into her cell phone.

I suspect I will run into them. The Garden of Eden the best spot. However, I have not been on the roof in years. My heart no longer can handle the three flights of steep stairs. If I could make it, my heart probably would not be able to handle what I would see up there.

Hopefully we will see each other again sunday morning at the Hard Rock Cafe brunch. Terri and Larry Baeder will be singing. Guaranteed monday at Dueling Bartenders.

Started my yesterday at Sandy’s Cafe for lunch. Then to Publix. I really needed groceries!

Some reading in the afternoon. Still going through Madeleine Albright’s Fascism. I highly recommend it. She traces modern day authoritarian figures beginning with Mussolini and Hitler. Leads up to Trump.

The Chart Room first last night. John bartending. One of Key West’s great personalities.

Met 2 guys. One from Scranton. The other originally from Albany, his wife Rochester. My home town Utica in the middle.

They were headed over to Michael’s for dinner.

Met Dion. Another lovely. An evening for lovely women!

Dion from Jamaica. I have visited twice. Many years ago. We talked about then and now. Interesting.

A tragedy yesterday. Of monumental proportions. Donna and Terri had Bear neutered. His testicles snipped. Horrendous! The mere thought bothers me.

Bear not a happy camper last night.

David Wolkowsky keeps popping up the past couple of weeks. My friend will be 99 saturday. A small party of 25 planned. I am invited. Can’t wait. An intimate event as only David can arrange.

David is Mr. Key West. If not for him, the Key West of today would not exist.

David bought a key 10 miles off Key West in 1974. Ballast Key. He constructed a magnificent home. All the amenities, although 10 miles off shore.

In his earlier days, he entertained big time at Ballast Key. World and national figures including British Prime Minister Edward Heath and Leonard Bernstein. His forever friend Jimmy Buffett a frequent guest.

David’s menu always the same. Champagne, hot dogs and chips.

A move is underway to rename Ballast Key to David Wolkowsky Key. This past week, the Monroe County Commission approved the change. Next, the approval of the federal government is required. The U.S. Board of Geographic Names. If they approve, the change will take take effect 5 years following David’s death.

Things never get better in Venezuela. Yet Maduro survives. Amazing.

The economy is in the shit house. Has been for several years. People do not have enough food. Several years ago, they ate their pets and zoo animals. People have trained themselves to eat every other day. Even babies.

Desperate times bring on desperate deeds. Many Venezuelans have turned to piracy. Old time piracy. Blackbeard’s type. Venezuelan pirates are rampaging the Caribbean in the vicinity of Trinidad and Tobago. Attacking yachts and fishing vessels.

Criminal chaos unleashed.

One victim who survived a pirate attack reported his group were doused with hot oil, hacked with machetes, and thrown overboard. Following which their boat was taken.

Manafort’s trial goes to the jury today. He spent a lot of money on items associated with the good life. Ten thousand dollar custom made suits an example.

Manafort has been sitting during the trial dressed to the nines, except he wears no socks. Turns out as a prisoner he can only wear government issued white socks. He is in court wearing magnificent suits and shoes. No socks! White socks do not go with his attire. He would rather go without.

The U.S. does not belong in Syria. Never the less, we are there. As is Russia and several other nations. All want a piece of the pie, ultimate control, etc. Russia and the U.S. till recently on opposite  sides. Trump however has us moving closer to being in bed with Russia.

Putin believes Russia will be involved with Syria for the long term. Hopefully forever. He is pulling a Hitler trick to assure such. He is after the Syrian youth.

Beginning this year, Syrian children will be permitted to attend Russian military academies in Russia. The first group begins September 1. The Syrians permitted to attend are the children of Syrian war heroes. Those who died in the long bloody Syrian conflict.

The intention is to develop the children into the military elite of the Syrian Arab Republic. Within 15 years, a sufficient number will have made it through the program and will control the Syrian military.

All Russian brain washed.

The program has been approved by a Russian governmental decree. Means Putin approved. It is referred to as “adaptation training.”

Hitler did something similar with the Hitler Youth. Hitler’s attitude then and Putin’s now: Get them while their young!

Enjoy your day!

 

KEY WEST ON A SATURDAY NIGHT

For me, last night was unique. I hit more downtown/Duval spots that normal. Did it all between 5 and 10.

Actually, I was at the corner of Sloppy Joe’s at 1. A quick down and back. I did not want to miss the Running of the Bulls. One of Hemingway Days’ finest events.

Stayed all of 15 minutes before returning home.

My evening began with Tammy and a manicure. Tammy just returned from a one month trip to Vietnam tuesday afternoon. The jet lag was not bothering her as she did my nails.

Tammy looked outstanding! The trip definitely changed her appearance. She got the works so to speak in Vietnam.

Magnificent eyebrows. Tattooed. Did not look tattooed at all. Thick. Beautiful. Tammy said they will fade over a period of six months.

Only $50 in Vietnam.

Her eyes done differently, also. Bright!

Her skin a golden tan. Her family lives near a beach. She spent many days at the beach.

Changed her hairstyle and color, also. Difficult for me to describe.

Simply stated, Tammy returned a movie star!

Then to Don’s Place. Had a drink with Jimmy. Jimmy will be painting the inside of my new home in about two weeks.

Boomer bartending. Had not seen Boomer in a while.

Followed up Don’s Place with the Chart Room. John bartending. Saturday not his usual night. He was filling in for Shawn.

Fellow sitting next to me from Oklahoma. Thirty six. In the commercial air conditioning business. Would prefer Key West and many retails. Big commercial jobs have big bills. However they have to go through accounting, etc. for approval and it takes him forever to be paid.

First time in Key West for he and his 26 year old wife.

They have traveled Caribbean and Asian waters. Warm spots. Key West the best. He plans on returning soon.

Another couple could not stop talking about the Garden of Eden. Their favorite spot. Wish it were mine.

I have not been there in 10 years. The two times I went, the only bare body parts I saw were the bare breasts of the female bartender.

I have to give it another shot. The couple claimed full body parts now available for observation.

Three couples came in. Ordered shots. Patron Tequila and Cafe. Patron topped with Bailey’s Irish Cream.

Looked good. John said it was also known as a Body Guinness. Because the drink looked like a miniature Guinness beer.

Decided to walk Duval. A Caribbean Street Festival going big time. The street jammed. Increases the temperature by 20 degrees. A bit uncomfortable when the 20 degrees is added to heavy humidity.

During the Festival walk decided stopped at The Porch. On Caroline, just off Duval. Another place I had not visited in years.

When I last visited, people sat on the huge front porch and drank. Not last night. Things have changed.

You can drink on the porch. However, it appeared most preferred inside.

The inside different. As you walked in the front door of this lovely old mansion, there were signs on either side of you. The sign to the left indicating the room to the left for beer drinkers. The sign to the right indicating liquor and spirit drinkers.

I went to the right and enjoyed a gin.

Both rooms packed.

I have heard a lot recently about a relatively new place on Caroline. Across from the Tropic Cinema. The Saint.

The Saint it was.

Looks like a guest house from the outside. With a fire engine red carpet running to the front door.

The inside blew me out!

The newest smartest place in Key West. Smart being the operative word. A long bar. Tons of people. The people as smart appearing as the room.

Customers primarily in the 30’s to 40’s range.

Something about their clothes. Key West remains a tee shirt/sport shirt/shorts town. These people were dressed appropriately, but a step up. I don’t know how tee shirts and shorts can look smart, but they did. The people and their attire went well together.

The Saint definitely will be added to one of those places I frequently attend. Loved it!

It was time to eat. Tavern ‘n Town the choice. The 9 o’clock happy hour.

Fried calamari and a couple of drinks. Read the newspapers. Enjoyed Bobby Nesbitt. Followed by a new singer. Nick Hagelin. Plays the guitar and sings. Outstanding! Diners cheered and clapped loudly each time he finished a tune.

Only appearing at Tavern ‘n Town one night. Hope he returns.

Was home and in bed at 10. A busy evening. All fun!

I did a change of pace video on Facebook yesterday. Talked about my grandfather and his immigration to the U.S. in 1906.

An excellent piece. Said with humility. My grandfather was a unique person and it was a joy to write about him.

I plan on doing a follow up today re my grandfather. He never knew his parents. Born a bastard. The video will tell the story of how he got his last name (and now mine) of Petrone.

Take a look. Both videos interesting. The video is Key West Lou Live on Facebook.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

TRUMP A CARNY PITCHMAN RE INFRASTRUCTURE

Today it begins. Trump plans on spending the whole week selling his infrastructure plan to the American people.

Good luck! Typical Trump. Good for corporate America, bad for the American people.

Past Presidents for many years have avoided repairing and maintaining our highways and bridges. Trump says he is going to fix them. With few taxpayer dollars.

Trump is selling a $1 trillion overhaul. His plan is to make corporate America pay. Trump wants to sell American highways and bridges to corporate America. If he can’t sell, then lease long term. Like 30-50 years.

The corporations will do the needed work.

The system will improve roads and bridges. To the detriment of the American people.

Corporations are in business to make money. The plan is not a give away one.

Tolls will be charged. Even on roads not presently charging tolls. The tolls will increase periodically as the corporations desire to make more profit.

Blackstone is the corporation in line to benefit. Over $400 million contributed to Trump PACs in the last election. Blackstone has been getting ready for almost a year to do the job.

I have spent considerable time in recent years in northern Italy. Italy has a program similar to the one Trump will be trying to sell. The Italian highways and bridges are in perfect shape. Through out  Italy.

The Italian people are unhappy. Tolls charged everywhere. Even on roads never charged before. The tolls constantly increasing.

My Italian friends all look for back narrow roads to drive in order to escape the tolls. The back roads do not provide for a healthy drive. Narrow. Like 1 1/2 lanes.

It is chicken time while driving on one. Two cars approach each other. Each waits for the other to pull off the road onto the shoulder in order to pass. A last second thing. Heart in your throat time.

The Garden of Eden was a Hemingway novel not published during his lifetime. It was discovered after his death. Then published. Hemingway spent 15 years off and on writing the book.

The theme of the novel is threefold. The exploration of male and female relationships, evidences an interest in androgynous characters, and the reversal of gender roles.

For many years, the roof of the Bull and Whistle on Duval has had a clothing optional rooftop bar. Its name Garden of Eden. Its reputation hot. In my reality, not so. In my many years in Key West, I have only been on the roof top a half dozen times. The only nudity was the bar maids breasts. A disappointment. The lack of nudity, not the bar maid’s breasts.

I have always wondered if the roof top Garden of Eden is named after Hemingway’s novel. Sex played a significant part in the book. Sex is intimated at the roof top bar.

If so, Hemingway would be disappointed in the rooftop’s misnomer.

The bocce season is over. Playoffs were this weekend. I did not attend. Don’s Place did not make the playoffs. First time in years.

In 1927, what is described as the New Overseas Highway between Key West and Big Pine was opened to traffic. This date to be exact.

A 30 minute drive today. Wonder what it was then?

Today a sad one in American history. Robert Kennedy was assassinated this date in 1968. He had just won the California primary for President. He was leaving the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angles at the time of the shooting.

The year was a tempestuous time in American history. The anti-
Vietnam War movement was peaking. Martin Luther King had been assassinated. Johnson announced he would not run for a second full term. The country was in general unrest. Riots everywhere.

Enjoy your day!