CANADIAN NIGHT AT THE CHART ROOM

The Chart Room was packed like New Year’s Eve last night. Everyone!

My biggest following after the U.S. is Canada. Two separate groups last night. Each religious readers of this blog.

First spoke with Dan and Nancy. They approached me. Advised we had talked in the Chart Room several years ago. Nancy reminded me at one time I was interested in the name of the RCA little dog. The Master’s Voice. She had written me it was Nipper.

They live in Canada one hour north of Detroit. Staying at Banyan Court. Yearly visitors to Key West.

I did not initially recall them. Not til her husband advised he had worked for DOW Chemical. Then the meeting came to mind.

Nice people. Glad they said hello.

As soon as Dan and Nancy left, Jackie and Conrad came by. Canadians, also. Accompanied by Jackie’s sister Donna and Jackie’s daughter.

Jackie I remembered as soon as she related our background. We had not met face to face before last night.

Jackie wrote to me the day Irma hit. Twenty years earlier, she had purchased a toe ring in Key West. Wore it religiously for the 20 years. It cracked the day of the hurricane.

She wrote she was having it fixed. Thought there was an omen involved re Key West

Jackie got the  repaired toe ring back the day the County reopened to visitors following Irma. She wrote again she had it back and was wearing it. Intimating the return of the ring and reopening of Key West had something to do with each other.

I wrote about Jackie and the toe ring episodes.

Last night, she was live in Key West. It was a pleasure to meet her! And her family, also.

Jackie reads me every day. Her sister Donna, also. Love them!

Spoke with Conrad. He and Jackie are frequent visitors to Key West. Conrad said his family has been coming since 1993. They own a condominium at the Galleon.

John bartending. Kevin and Sheila at the bar.

The conversation got into Matthew McConaughey. A major star. In Key West for two weeks making a movie to be released next year. The Beach Bum. McConaughey the beach bum, of course. Movie name Moondog. A marijuana addict.

I left the Chart Room too early wednesday night. Kevin walked Duval around 9 hoping to find the star filming an episode which had been scheduled for Duval.

He saw him! As did his daughter Kati. She videoed him and sent the video to Facebook and her Dad. Kevin showed it to me last night.

McConaughey was attired in a dress, white sneaks, and a sail boat captain’s cap. He was pushing a wheelbarrow full of pot in large cellophane bags. He was eluding the police. He was filmed running from Sloppy Joe’s to St. Paul’s Church and back.

Kevin said when the filming/run was over, McConaughey stood in the middle of Duval laughing his head off.

Naval aviators were in the Chart Room, also. In flight gear.

The Navy is involved in a celebration. The 100th year celebration of Key West Naval Aviation. The first flight was in December 1917. A mere 15 years after Kitty Hawk.

There were more at the Pier House.

I went out to the Beach Bar to get something to eat. Lovely Meri bartending. The Beach Bar can be lonely at night. Not last night. NORMAL had a party earlier. Many were still hanging out at the bar.

NORMAL is short for the National Organization For The Reform of Marijuana Laws. Partying they were. Imbibing. One of the members playing his guitar and singing marijuana ditties.

My day was a bit busy.

Saw my eye doctor. My new glasses a disaster. Seeing clearly impossible up close and at a distance.

He checked the glasses out against his prescription. The right eye lens had three errors. Three situations not consistent with the prescription.

No wonder I could not see!

Immediately went to the optician’s. The man I was dealing with was out sick. I talked with his partner. She thought I was trying to hustle them. It was obvious from her questioning of me. I said, hold up! I’m leaving. I will be back monday when your partner is in.

Then to Publix for diet food. It does not last long. I am on Atkins. High protein, low carb. Protein expensive. Spent $60 for three small bags of edibles.

I am on day 11 of the diet. Eight pounds so far.

I hate dieting! Pure deprivation!

A little later, I was sitting with Tammy. My weekly manicure.

Yesterday’s Key West Citizen editorial page contained an interesting phrase referencing the sexual harassment era we suddenly find ourselves in: “Ghost of harassment past.”

Enjoy your day!

CONFIRMATION…..NEW WORLD HAS ARRIVED

I am despondent this morning. Yesterday’s Senate vote the reason. The vote that passed the Senate Republican version of the tax bill.

What was a question in my mind now a reality. Government as we have known it gone. No longer of the people, by the people, for the people. Now government by and for large corporations and wealthy Americans. The people no longer count.

Patricians rule. Like 5 percent of the population. The rest of the people peons.

Money controls Congress. Its members bought. Thirty pieces of silver.

Michael Flynn. A nail in the coffin.

Finally got hot water yesterday afternoon. Without since tuesday. Cold showers and no shaving during that time.

Simple things do mean a lot. A warm shower!

Frankie the Plumber showed up to correct the problem. He and his wife Sandy friends. If I had known he was the fixer, I would have called him and had hot water the first day.

The problem took less than a minute to correct. The reset button was turned off.

Irma and Me selling. I am running into people carrying it and/or telling me they ordered it. Great!

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

Giorgio’s evening last night! Drinks at the Chart Room. Dinner at the Pier House’s One. I had intended to entertain Giorgio at Hot Tin Roof for dinner. Not able. Hot Tin Roof was having a private party.

Tom and Fran joined us at the Chart Room. One hour of great conversation. Tom and Fran recently joined the Sons and Daughters of Italy. Fran Italian.

Giorgio has decided to leave Key West tomorrow instead of monday. He is moving to the Villages. Already purchased a home there. His Key West home for sale.

I will miss Giorgio. We became good friends in the short year we have known each other.

Kevin and Che at the bar. I have not seen Che in months. He has become a recluse in his old age. He is one year older than me.

I thought it was Irma time again last night. Returned home at 9:30. No TV, wi-fi or land line. Comcast said it would take till noon today to repair. Fortunately, everything was up and running when I rose this morning at 6.

A big day today! I am seeing two friends I have only seen twice in 30 years. Bob and Helen Marks. I was their Best Man. They are in on a Viking cruise for the day. We will be having lunch at Louie’s Backyard.

Syracuse/Kansas tonight. Kansas ranked #2 nationally. An 11 point favorite. Early in the season. Let’s see what happens.

Conflict time tonight. The Christmas Parade. Immediately following the game. Hope to make the parade. Don’t know.

Tiger Woods doing well. In 5th place after two days. Seven strokes off. In the game!

History is a wonderful thing. We learn.

This morning’s Key West Citizen made mention of the cigar business in Key West in 1900. The Key West cigar industry turned out 1.5 million cigars this day alone in 1900.

Enjoy your day!

 

BALLS IN NORTH DAKOTA

A strange title. Refers to male testicles. As this story develops, you will agree it appropriate.

If I could video the Chart Room, the shows would be terrific. The conversations some evenings would be difficult for a professional writer to compose.

Last night an example.

It was David, Kevin, John, Mike from Liverpool, Ollie, and me. Ollie the star. He was wound up. Irma still getting to him.

Ollie is a first class citizen. Always volunteering, helping the community. Does for others. The nature of the man. From the heart.

Ollie lives at Santa Clara. He is President of the Homeowner/Tenant Association. As such, he tried to keep things under control as Irma struck.

He had keys to each apartment. Important.

Water never hit the building. It was 3 feet high in the parking lot, however.

Owners/tenants had friends stay with them during Irma. The building considered a safe place.

Some young adults arrived with their scooters/mopeds.

Ollie discovered the scooters parked in one of the hallways. He yelled and screamed and said get them out of here. Against fire laws.

When he returned, the scooters were no longer in the hall way. He discovered them in the apartment. The next time he looked, they were no longer in the apartment. They were on the fire escape.

Frustrated, Ollie called the Fire Department. By the time they arrived, the scooters were gone.

Later, there was smoke. Fire smoke. Not from the scooters. A main breaker caught on fire. He called the Fire Department.

Ollie heard a lot of noise coming from one apartment. A strange yet familiar noise. He entered to find someone trying to blow out the candles in the room with a leaf blower.

Pool water was used to flush toilets. During the several no power days, tenants swam in the pool. Ollie had cookouts for the tenants. Somehow, he got some food. Cooked on the outside grill. A party each evening. Sounded like Birmingham.

FEMA has been supplying the people of Key West with food packages. Labeled MRE. Stands for Meals Ready to Eat.

Ollie a bit of a joker when not taking his President duties seriously.

He handed me a gray squared small packet. Labeled MRE-P. It was a prophylactic. A condom. I looked at him and said, you’re kidding. No, he said. FEMA also had MRE-Ts. Tampons.

It was a joke.

Ollie got into a dissertation  as to where he wanted to be buried. He had visited the two local cemeteries. Shocked at how expensive! Decided the only thing of value he  had to leave were his testicles.

He has signed the necessary paperwork and also placed in his will what he wants done with them.

His family has a burial plot in North Dakota. He wants his testicles removed and transported to North Dakota for burial. He does not care what happens to the rest of his body.

The man was serious!

Ollie walked behind the bar. There sitting amongst all the pics was what Ollie described as a Ball Coffin. A cylinder about 2 inches wide and 4 inches long. Military green. His testicles were to be transported in the cylinder.

Ollie ended the story by raising a fisted hand and shouting…..Balls in North Dakota!

He was sober.

Stopped at Denny’s on the way home for a sandwich. Sat at the bar. Robi bartending. Another customer nearby, Bob. Bob is a marine mechanic.

The three of us had a lengthy conversation. Discussed many things. Including Puerto Rico and grown children. Each of us have adult children. Our stories of them similar. A different generation from ours.

Spent a couple of hours at Dr. Norris’ office yesterday. My new primary care physician. A first visit. I believe I will be in good hands.

I have a dinner date this evening. With Brenda who I met last week at the Chart Room.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

CONCERNS

Two matters are at the forefront of my mind. One has to do with Harvey. The other Trump and the military.

Without question, Harvey is the worst of the worst. Nature’s force/violence not within my recollection.

From my perspective, assistance has been outstanding. Whether governmental or voluntary. It has been several days however and the natives are getting restless. Understandable taking into consideration the conditions under which they are living.

At first, everyone was grateful to be alive and thankful for the assistance being provided. The kumbaya could not last.

Yesterday, the rumbles began. Slowly. Food not that good, for example. Today, the chemical plant. Questions re whether firefighters are doing enough or the right thing.

Several days into Harvey, rescuing people still a primary concern,. Properly so. However, attention has to be paid also to those saved and sleeping in overcrowded shelters. They are getting restless and must know what is being done/planned to help them.

Let them know. Otherwise, the rumblings will turn into trouble.

My other concern is Trump and the military.

Trump is incompetent and incapable. Should never have been elected President. He is commander-in-chief. However, the military seem to override certain of his decisions and go their own way. Mathis and transgenders the most recnet example.

I have always feared an overthrow of the government by the military. More so since we went to an all volunteer military.

We are nowhere near any type military takeover at this time. However recent happenings could be the seeds for one.

Great Chart Room last night! John and Kevin. Then two visitors from Columbus, Ohio. Megan and Ryan. Their first time in Key West. A relative told them to stop in the Chart Room for a drink.

Proud parents of three year old Knox Dallas.

Megan is a stylist and has her own business. Ryan is District Manager for a liquor company. Jack Daniel’s.

I wrote about Jack Daniel’s a couple of days ago. Hope they go back and find that blog. The venue was the Jack Daniel’s distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee. The new political correctness re Confederate statues and monument the subject.

The conversation got into the new book I am trying to write. Believe I will finish this one. Key West and Whore Houses. Or, Whore Houses of Key West. Or, something like that. Houses of ill repute and ladies of the night.

Whore houses do not hold a special place in my heart. My concern was to write a novel Key West book. One that would sell. There are a ton of Key West books out there. About houses, streets, outstanding citizens, etc. None about whore houses.

Megan and Ryan participated. Suggestion wise.

When they left, John, Kevin and I agreed they would have a lot to talk about re the Chart Room when they return to Columbus…..Those wild Key West people!

Stopped at Tavern ‘n Town for a bite to eat. George bartending. Rob entertaining.

Harpoon Harry’s. One of my favorite places. A block off the waterfront on Caroline. The feeling of an old time diner. Food that sticks to your ribs.

Every couple of weeks, I stop in. Generally for a late breakfast. Their eggs the best in town! Taste fresh. Unique.

In September, Harpoon Harry’s will be 25 years old. Opened in September 1992 by Ron Heck and Robert Cobb. In celebration thereof and thanks to their many customers over the years, Harpoon Harry’s will sell the blue plate special at the same price as when they opened. $4.99. And a special breakfast. $1.99.

The special prices will be available September 25-29.

There are 67 counties in Florida. Suicide has become an increasing problem over the years. Monroe County has had the highest number of suicides for many years. A dubious distinction. Last year, an improvement. Monroe County dropped to sixth.

Credit in large measure is due to Mary Lou Hoover and her group who have done much to help those considering suicide.

September is National Suicide Prevention Month. September 10, World Suicide Prevention Day. I am sure we will all be hearing about the subject matter and activities soon from Mary Lou.

9/11 will never be forgotten. Each year, anywhere in the United States.

Key West is recalling the occasion on 9/11. The Key West Fire Department and the Key West Fire Museum. The event will take place at 8:30 am on 9/11 at the Fire Museum on Grinnell.

Bocce tonight. First game of the season rained out last week. I will be there supporting Don’s Place.

I miss playing.

Enjoy your day!