SUNDAY A BIG KEY WEST DAY

Big day sunday!

Stone crab season opens! My favorite food. The favorite of many. Better than Maine lobster. I have often said if I were to have one last meal, it would be stone crabs.

Kate Miano’s Gardens open. Last sunday the first time. An excellent place to spend an early sunday evening.

Hot Dog Church continues. Laurie ruling the pulpit. Three thirty in the afternoon.

I plan enjoying my first stone crab dinner of the season monday night at the Conch Republic with Jean Thornton.

My excitement yesterday was another test at the hospital. Some days my life is boring.

Followed the hospital up with a visit to CVS. Flu shot time.

Felt strange going to a drug store for a flu shot. Some things have always been done in a doctor’s office. Doctors do not want to give the shot. The flu shot supply they have to purchase too expensive.

I spent the evening at home. A couch potato. Watched two old movies.

My laziness caused me to miss bocce. Spoke with Don this morning. Don’s Place played Hell’s Rangers. They can be hell to play! Generally, # 1 every season.

Don’s Place lost. Hell’s Rangers won 2 games and Don’s Place 1.

I mentioned yesterday no Key West Citizen. I was correct and incorrect. No Citizen when I looked at 10. Must have been published later in the day. Published this morning normally.

Buffalo’s Tom Dixson and I communicated via cell phone and e-mail yesterday. Tom a die hard Syracuse fan, also.

He had the Nebraska game right on. Actually, two games.

In 1983, Nebraska embarrassed Syracuse 63-8.

1984 was different. Nebraska #1. Syracuse unranked. Syracuse won 17-9.

I missed the game. A family wedding. The Church ceremony was ongoing at the time time of the game. I held a small radio to my ear. I was not embarrassed. The bride kept turning around to find out what was going on. A big time Syracuse fan, also.

Syracuse plays Clemson tonight. Clemson undefeated and ranked #2. Recalling the 1984 Nebraska game, anything can happen.

Clemson a 22 point favorite.

I plan on watching the game from my couch and bed. Going through a lazy period.

I cannot understand the ineptness of some people at their jobs. It was recently discovered that 70 plus children were missing from the Kansas foster care system.

A State department officer in charge testified she did not know.

Most young girls.

The Republicans need a major legislation win. This year. Trump and Republicans have zeroed in on a tax bill.

Speaker Paul Ryan spoke before the ultra conservative Heritage Foundation yesterday.

The tax bill would benefit persons like Trump greatly. It would do relatively nothing for middle and lower classes. It would cut trillions from Medicaid and Medicare.

Ryan assured everyone he would do everything to get the bill passed this year. Even to keeping Congressmen in Washington over the Christmas holiday.

If the scenario works out that way, Ryan will be the Scrooge of his party.

Some thing I never knew. Thought the White House was big. Not that big, however. One hundred thirty two rooms, 35 bathrooms, and 3 kitchens.

No waiting in line to go.

Enjoy your day!

DACA AND IRMA

Two items of grave concern. Immediate grave concern.

The first is DACA. Trump will advise his decision tomorrow. His decision re Dreamers. Eight hundred thousand in number per official records. Another million unrecorded.

Trump’s decision will reflect the nature of his heart. His humanity.

One way or another, he is going to throw them out. Either directly by his own action, or he will pass the buck to Congress to make a decision within six months or out they go.

Passing final judgment to Congress a joke. Congress has been unable to decide much of anything in recent times in six months.

Till Trump’s election, the United States was not the type of nation that would throw Dreamers out. Stalin and Hitler would (or have them killed). Not our cup of tea.

Irma. I fear it may be knocking on Key West’s door sunday or monday. As a category 4 hurricane. Meteorologists say too soon to tell. However, the tracking lines they issue say yes.

Scary.

Till 3 yesterday, busy.

Up at 6 to get yesterday’s blog out. Sloan at 10. A few hours needed attention to some matters.

One of the problems involved my cellphone and Key West Lou Live. the video show I do daily on Facebook.

There has been no live video the past few days. The reason being I could not get a clear picture during the last two videos. Cloudy.

Figured it had to be the phone. Sloan played with it. Not the phone. She thought it was the sunlight behind me. I said no. I have done 30 plus videos from the spot and the sun was never a problem.

Took the phone to Verizon in Winn-Dixie. Great people!

The sun the problem. I said no and explained the other videos being ok. Verizon showed me that previous videos were made during late afternoon. The two that were foggy early afternoon. The sun light created the difference.

Live and learn! Yes, I e-mailed Sloan and told her she was correct.

Then to Publix. Quiet. Unusual. Sunday afternoons generally busy.

Got home at 3. I still had to take the water pill and lie down for 3 hours. Meant no Hot Dog Church for me.

The Duval Loop bus seems to be doing well. I suspect it will change Duval crawling. Instead of going to the bar next door, revelers will now be able to hit and miss as they so desire. Go from Sloppy Joe’s to 801, for example.

William Hackley. I have always suspected he was probably a Confederate. His diary is for the year 1856 so it was impossible to ascertain.

I did some digging. Hackley was a Yankee through and through.

He and his family moved to Washington, DC and resided there from 1863-1865 while Hackley worked in the Treasury Department. Following the Civil War, Hackley continued to work for the U.S. Treasury in another capacity. He was put in charge of Confederate State cotton through 1866.

Hackley makes mention in this day’s writing that his wife Matilda payed Mrs. Tift for goods bought for her.

Mrs. Tift Mrs. Asa Tift. I wrote about Asa last week. Asa built the Hemingway House in 1851. Owned 14 slaves at the time. Had the 14 slaves build it.

Asa’s bust also sits in the special memorial next to Mallory Square honoring prominent Key Westers over the years.

I suggested if present day political correctness was to prevail, the Hemingway House and Asa’s bust should be torn down. The House written with tongue in cheek.

In researching Mrs. Tift this morning, I discovered Asa was a big Confederate supporter. He and his brothers financed the construction of a vessel for the Confederacy. When Lee surrendered, Asa and one of his brothers blew the vessel up rather than let it fall into the hands of the Union.

Asa’s bust must definitely come down. On reconsideration, perhaps even the Hemingway House.

The stupidity of it all!

As most of you know, my thinking has come full circle. Leave all these monuments, statues, etc. alone. Tearing down something does not change history. History is what it is. Good, bad or indifferent.

Enjoy your day!

ARGENTINE TANGO

Dance the Tango! The Argentine Tango!

Tonight!

Key West Theater on Eaton Street. Part of the Key West World of Culture Dance Series. Learn or watch. Your choice.

Trump on the receiving end. The tide is turning. It does not seem he can take it as well as he can give it out.

Liberty University a major Trump supporter. Liberty’s President Jerry Falwell, Jr. at the forefront. A few graduates are unhappy with Falwell’s support of Trump following Trump’s Nazi and alt right comments. So far, one hundred. They are returning their diplomas.

I have become a fan of the Justice Building Blog. Sometimes bland, sometimes humorous. Today’s on the funny side.

Trump on frequent occasion makes statements that are historically incorrect, nonsensical, just plain stupid. Some quotes attributable to Trump listed today. None said by Trump. Could have been, however.

Like…..”Nazis are people too. Americans.” How about…..”We spend all the money on nuclear weapons and don’t use them. What good are they? Or…..”Lincoln did not believe in global warming. Neither did Patton. Neither do I.”

Confederate statues and memorials being removed. Some in the dark of night. My thoughts move back and forth.

At first, I did not agree. Like it or not, the Civil War is part of American history. The Nation united following the war. Southern peoples have the right to honor their heroes of that moment in American history.

Then I heard the voices of today’s African-Americans. Most of the statues/memorials were constructed during the 1920’s by and in support of the Klu Klux Klan or in support of southern States during the 1960’s civil rights disturbances.

Their voices loud and clear. Whether a statue, monument or flag, we are reminded of our slavery heritage. These items represent a time when our people suffered.

I understood. Or, thought I did. Tear them down became part of my thought process.

Now, I find myself swaying back and forth between both conclusions.

Which brings me to Key West and the issue.

This morning’s Key West Citizen reveals three Confederate statues/memorials. One in Bayview Park. Another, Clinton Square. The third, Mallory square itself. There is a fourth I discovered myself.

The Confederate memorial in Bayview Park was constructed in 1924 by the Stephen Mallory chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. Dedicated to the soldiers and sailors of the Confederacy.

The one in Clinton Square erected in honor of Confederate veteran and Judge J.V. Harris.

Mallory Square the best of the best or outrageous based on one’s perspective.

The huge expanse known as Mallory Square is named after Stephen R. Mallory. Mallory was raised in Key West. A United States Senator representing Florida prior to the Civil War. Served as Confederate Secretary of the Navy during the Civil War. Charged with treason following the war. Imprisoned for a time. Then paroled by President Andrew Johnson.

When a U.S. Senator, his first speech was for a return to flogging on U.S. Navy vessels. The nature of the man reflected?

I am unaware if he continued to live in Key West during his Senatorial years or any time thereafter. He died not in Key West, but at his home in Pensacola.

Well my fellow residents of Key West, do we tear down the Bayview Park memorial, the Clinton Square statue, and rename Mallory Square? No thought given so far. I doubt that Key Westers really care.

One more example. Asa Forseyth Tift.

Tift was the first owner of what today is the Hemingway House. He built it in 1851. Tift owned 14 slaves. They constituted the labor force used.

Tift’s bust is located in the Memorial Sculpture Garden at the edge of Mallory Square.

Should the Hemingway House be torn down? Should Tift’s bust be removed from the Memorial Sculpture Garden?

All food for thought. What is good for Charlottesville, Baltimore and other cities, should be good for Key West. Lets have a universal application. Or, cease and desist with the removal of these historical representations.

A confusing issue for those with no ax to grind. Like me.

Enjoy your day!

 

“GOD BLESS HIM”

I fear Charlottesville saturday may have changed America forever.

The shadow people revealed themselves in major fashion. The rodents came out of the earth, the vermin out of the walls. White Supremacists, neo-Nazis, and Klu Klux Klaners.

Accepted without proper/sufficient denunciation by Trump.

The white supremacists website Daily Stormer cheered Trump in that regard: “When asked to condemn, he just walked out of the room. Really, really good. God bless him.”

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Alt Right leader, Donald Trump!

An excellent Sunday!

Meet The Press.

Then the PGA. Watched Justin Thomas win by 2 strokes.

Hot Dog Church. Laurie bartending. Like her a lot. Donna and Terri. Art and George. Met a lady. A sex change person. Male to female. Many others.

Donna and Terri joined me for dinner afterwards at Antonia’s. TK bartending. A fun time.

I am an early to sleep person. Not last night. Awake till 1 in the morning. Got hooked on a couple of movies. Will pay for it today.

Another Tropical Storm. Gert. Not a problem. Way out in the Atlantic. Already started its turn northwest.

One may not turn, will increase in power to a hurricane, and head for Key West. I am preparing you for such an event.

Failed to mention one part of my Robert and Ally saturday. We did Lobster Fest between lunch at Denny’s and the Key West Escape Room. Walked Duval.

First time Lobster Fest for Robert and Ally. They enjoyed. They knew some of those working the food tents. Montessori teachers.

I sometimes think Pritam Singh does not receive the credit he deserves. On this day in 1988, Singh broke ground for Truman Annex. Since that time, he has constructed other significant sites. Ocean Edge on Stock Island the most recent.

A major contributor to the Key West scene.

I mentioned my concern re the amphitheater the other day. Had the City hired some one to run the place yet? Or was the amphitheater to be another half assed planning job ultimately costing taxpayers extra money?

The latter appears to be the case.

The City Commission announced the amphitheater’s first event will be a 4 day country music concert in February. The show is paying Key West a $4,000 rental feel. Yes, $4,000! Won’t even cover the cost for staffing, clean-up, and extra police for crowd and traffic control.

There once was a City Commission who used their heads in running Key West. Actually, keeping Key West afloat.

During the tough days of the Great Depression (1929 through the 1930’s), Key West was broke. Everyone was. The City Commission authorized the City to print money. Called it Script. Actual amount unknown. Thought to be $50,000-100,000.

It worked. The Script was used to pay City employees. Who in turn used the Script to buy things. Many merchants accepted the Script.  Key West was able to keep its nose above the water line.

How bad was bad? So bad that there was no demand to buy real estate. No one had money. There were also few foreclosures. No one had the money to buy the property afterwards from the bank.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

CASA ANTIGUA / KEY WEST ROOM ESCAPE

The Casa Antigua is an integral part of Key West history.

One of Key West’s first built hotels. In 1919. By Benjamin Trevor and George Morris. Constructed with bricks from Fort Zachary Taylor and a building torn down at the time across the street. The Casa Antigua located at the corner of Simonton Street and Rose Lane.

The facility was named the Trev-Mor Hotel. On the first floor was a Ford distributorship also called the Trev-Mor.

Ernest Hemingway is primarily responsible for the building’s historical notoriety.  He and wife Pauline arrived from Paris. they were on their way to New York. Intended to drive. Pauline’s uncle had bought them a new Ford which they were to pick up at the Trev-Mor distributorship.

The car was not waiting for the Hemingways. Late in arriving. They were told it would be there in two days. Ernest and Pauline put into the Trev-Mor Hotel to await its arrival.

Two days turned into ten before the car arrived. In those ten days, Hemingway discovered Key West. He fell in love with Key West. Remained ten years.

During the time, he wrote A Farewell to Arms.

There are other stories concerning the Casa Antigua. They remain for another day to tell. Except for the most recent one.

A new Key West attraction opened two weeks ago on the first floor. The Key West Room Escape. Sound’s like a fun place!

Sort of a search and find items of Key West historical significance.

Teams of up to eight customers are locked in a room. The room filled with all kinds of objects. The team has sixty minutes to find a hidden item. Like the missing page of a manuscript.

Clues are given. An announcer behind a window gives hot and cold clues.

The cost is $35 for an adult and $25 for 16 and under.

Sounds like a fun place. My game plan is to take Robert and Ally.

Did a late Hot Dog Church yesterday afternoon. The Back Door empty, except for Donna, Terri and Laurie. Spent a couple of humorous hours before returning home.

I continue to run tired. Kept to home basically the past few days. See the heart doctor at 5 today for the results of last week’s tests.

The semblance of a storm forming in the Gulf 50 miles off Tampa. Not a hurricane. Right now a tropical depression. Result of low pressure. Not expected to become a big deal.

There will be big time rain today and tomorrow however as a result. Winds will not be of consequence.

Appears hurricane season as a practical matter is around the corner.

East Martello Fort is going to get a $2 million repair job. Money coming from grants.

East Martello is a Civil War Fort. Built by the Union to help in warding off Confederacy ships. The Confederacy ships never arrived.

One hundred fifty five years old. Time again for a touch up.

Two strange events of a similar nature occurred in 1975.

On this date, Jimmy Hoffa disappeared. On September 9, Key West Fire Chief and convicted drug dealer Bum Farto disappeared. Both swiftly swept off by third parties never to be seen again.

Farto’s disappearance left Key West with a famous saying. On tee shirts, in the media and conversation: Bum Farto Where Are You?

Multi-talented Terri White coming over later to change a shower fixture and put together a new desk chair for me. The benefits of having a lesbian wife.

Enjoy your day!

 

BARTENDER JOHN…..CITIZEN OF THE DAY

I mention John Holster often. The Chart Room bartender. Top notch bartender. Knows how to handle and entertain customers.

My friend.

John has been honored! By the Key West Citizen. He is Citizen of the Day. His picture and a few lines below appear at the bottom of today’s edition at page 3.

Congratulations, John!

Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest. It was for me yesterday. Laziness permeated my being till I left the house at 6.

Drove to Hot Dog Church. Not for services. Much too late. To meet Donna and Terri. They were the only patrons left at the Back Door. Laurie bartending and chatting with them.

I like Laurie. A straight forward no bullshit person.

I was about 2 hours late. My laziness the blame.

We had a couple of drinks and Donna, Terri and I headed out to dinner. Hogfish.

Sometimes I enjoy hogfish, sometimes not. Yesterday was a day I did. The hogfish outstanding! My guess is the quality of a hogfish meal depends on who is cooking.

Here it was the middle of the summer and Hogfish was packed. Occasionally, some had a brief wait for a table.

Hemingway Days begin this week. A big time!

Hemingway Days is a clean healthy event. Partying up and down Duval. The crowd a different breed.

I look forward to some of the activities. Especially the Run of the Bulls and the Hemingway Look Alike Contest.

Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea was published in 1952. Inspiration for parts and characters primarily from Cuba, Key West and San Francisco.

The fisherman Santiago  had many thoughts and some conversation with Manolin re his hero Joe DiMaggio. DiMaggio suffered trials and tribulations as Santiago had. In the end, he accomplished great things.

For Santiago who had not caught a fish in more than 80 days, it was to catch the big one.

DiMaggio was Santiago’s inspiration.

Some believe that Hemingway drew on DiMaggio’s father for the character Santiago. Very few. If true, it would be because DiMaggio’s father was a Sicilian fisherman before immigrating to the United States and continued for a period of time to be a fisherman in the San Francisco Bay area.

Another writing giant who lived in Key West was Tennessee Williams. On this day in 1975, Anthony Quinn met with Williams in Key West. Quinn a fine actor. His greatness still a few years away.

Williams had written the play The Red Devil Battery Sign. Quinn starred in it. The play did not go over well. Closed on Broadway after one week.

Quinn was visiting Williams to see if the play could be revived. The play subsequently was in Vancouver and London. Though not with Quinn in the starring role and only a bit more success than had been achieved in New York.

Interestingly, Pierce Brosnan, then a young actor, starred in the leading role in the London revival.

Poor Venezuela!

I have been following Venezuela and its President Nicholas Maduro for four years. Ever since Maduro took office and Venezuela ran out of toilet paper within one year. Four years later and Venezuela still does not have an adequate supply of toilet paper. High infation, no jobs and no food, also.

I consistently ask why the Venezuelan people do not revolt. Yesterday, an informal referendum was held. Note the word informal. The vote had no binding effect.

Maduro wanted a new constitution. One which would guarantee his remaining in office. More than 7 million voted against Maduro’s plan. An overwhelming vote.

Will anything come of the result? Time will tell. However, I doubt it. For some reason, the people are reluctant/afraid to put guns, sticks and stones in their hands and attack the palace.

Enjoy your day!

BRICEN, MACARIO THE MONKEY, LAKOTA THE LION, AND HERMAN……CHATHAM VILLAGE BEARS

 

I met the parents of the Chatham Village Bears last night. Art and George. Designers and producers of tiny animals. Cute little ones. Like Brien, Macario the Monkey, Lakota the Lion, and Herman. Plus hundreds more. Too many to mention.

Art and George are Key Westers. Many years. They started making these soft furry animals. The animals caught on. Their business now world wide.

I met Art and George last week at Hot Dog Church. Art missed services this week. I arrived near the end to meet Donna and Terri. We had planned to have dinner together. George at the bar.

We invited George to join us. He called his husband Art. The five of us enjoyed a fun filled dinner at Antonia’s.

Take a look at  George and Art’s website. www.chathamvillagebears.com. You will be impressed. I ordered Macario the Monkey to sit on the corner of my desk. I need company.

Laurie was bartending for the Church at Aqua’s Back Bar. A personality! Originally from France.

I complain about traffic. Bicycles, also. Key West has become overburdened with people and machines.

A perfect example is what was reported in Citizens’ Voice this morning. Someone had driven to Fort Zach Beach. Had to go through “customs.”  The toll booth. Twenty three cars ahead of him.

The worst I have ever been is number 3 in line, with no one behind me.

The topic yesterday on Key West Lou Live, my Facebook video, were wedding cookies. I can only take so many days of talking about Trump.

The Wall Street Journal’s weekend addition had a front page article about wedding cookies. They have superceded the wedding cake and in many instances replaced the wedding cake.

A recent Youngstown, Ohio wedding had 500 invited guests. Eighteen thousand cookies consisting of 150 varieties served. No wedding cake.

The Second Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. It was to be read to the people from the steps of Independence Hall. Printed copies were to be handed out.

The reading and distribution of copies had to wait till July 8. The printer could not get them out earlier.

On this day in 1925, the Monkey trial began. Also known as the Scopes trial. Evolution the issue. William Jennings Bryan for the People. Clarence Darrow for the Defense.

I wrote a lengthy article re the trial several years ago for KONK Life. The trial was a fraud. A phony. Perverted American history till recently.

The community involved was a small Tennessee town called Dayton. Business was poor. The city fathers decided something dramatic had to occur to correct the situation.

They decided on a trial involving a matter of national interest.

Evolution was much discussed back then. Whether man evolved from God or beast. It was against Tennessee law to teach evolution evolved from anyone other than God.

The city fathers convinced a young school teacher John Thomas Scopes to say he had taught evolution in his classes. Man evolved from animal.

The community leaders, the judge and Scopes were all part of the chicanery. No one else knew.

The trial did get national attention. The attorneys on both sides were unaware of the fraud being perpetrated and fought like hell in the court room. So much so, that William Jennings Bryan died five days after the trail.

Paris’ birthday this year will find the City more than 2,000 years old. Somewhere between 2,066 and 2, 267 years old. The actual date of its founding uncertain. 250 BC generally utilized. Historians acknowledge the uncertainty.

Enjoy your day!

Hot Dog Church

There is a first time for everything. Yesterday, it was Hot Dog Church.

Lesbians gather at 3:30 sunday afternoons at Aqua’s Back Bar. Social time.

Donna and Terri regularly attend. Men are welcome. They have invited me. I passed each time. Probably because I hate seeing a woman I covet and can’t have.

Barbara is visiting. The girls invited the both of us. We went.

Called Hot Dog Church. Strange name. So called because many times hot dogs are grilled. Sometimes, the ladies do pot luck. Everyone brings a dish.

It was fun. Not too many people. I learned most of the lesbians who attend are snowbirds. Long gone this time of year.

I stood out. I was male. Everyone talked to me. Enjoyed myself.

Afterwards, the four of us headed over to Antonia’s for dinner. One of my favorite restaurants 15 years ago. No more for a number of reasons. Rarely attend.

TK bartending. Good to see him! One of Key West’s most loved persons.

TK did me a good turn when I first bought my home here 19 years ago. He invited me to a party at his home. My first invitation. I knew few people. Following the party, I knew everyone. The invitations came pouring in.

Enjoyed a great meal! Antonia’s has a standard $10 cost for a dish of pasta. Made for a cheap night. The drinks were the killer!

Terri sings tonight. At Aqua. Dueling Bartenders. I have to pick her up at 5. Donna will be working.

Terri is an exciting vocalist! Her voice stretches the walls. Powerful. A joy to hear.

I mentioned last week William Hackley was a slave owner. He purchased slave Daniel. Paper work was completed on yesterday’s date in 1856.

The bill of sale carried Matilda’s name as the new owner. For whatever reason, William did not want Daniel in his name and instead placed ownership in his wife’s name.

Greyhound racing remains popular in Florida. Fraud and chicanery discovered again. Twelve racing greyhounds recently reported positive for cocaine.

I am waiting for Comcast to stop by and hook up my wi-fi, TV and land phone. Operating at the moment off an app on my cell phone. Convenient. However expensive if used too long. I have been using it for several days.

Enjoy your day! Hope you have it off and it is part of a long holiday weekend for you!