I was sorely disappointed last night. Toga Party. What Toga Party? Hard to find.

I have been a fan of Toga Party since the mid 1980’s. Merely as a voyeur. For me, fun. Last night, there was little to be voyeured. Very little.

The reasons why two-fold from my perspective.

Irma obviously a contributing factor. Who would want to pay $700-$1,000 a night for a hotel room if Key West was still recovering from Irma?

The other is the leadership of the event. New leadership this year. The former head ran the show for many years. Complaints grew in recent years by certain locals that there was too much nudity, perversion, etc.

The squeaky wheel was heard by the new leadership. Advertising for this year’s event was not to the usual sources. Sexually inclined persons and groups.

Fantasy Fest an adult party. Always has been. People want to show off their bodies, play, etc. Hurts no one. The new leadership better study closely the reasons why this year’s event failed. And not be reluctant to accept responsibility where warranted.

I walked Duval in the usual Toga Party area last night. Sloppy Joe’s, inside and out. I would estimate the crowd no more than one-third of its usual number. Sloppy’s not crowded. Could walk the streets without problem. Duval not closed off. Cars driving through.

I saw no more than 10 persons in toga attire.

The failure of Toga Party probably a combination of Irma and the new leadership looking in the wrong places for attendees.

The Parade is saturday night. Normally 60,000 to 80,000 spectators. Terrific! Not this year. It will be significantly less.

Several years ago, there was another Irma/storm. Fantasy Fest was delayed into early December so Key West would be ready. This year greed dictated otherwise. There was a rush to get ready and hold the event timely. Hotels, bars, merchants, etc. needed the business.

The goose that lays the golden egg seriously hurt this year.Let’s hope it does not die not next.

I saw three sets of bare breasts last night. One at the Chart Room. Bugs Bunny. She and her husband from Kentucky. Breasts spray painted.

The other two on the street in front of Sloppy’s. One young, the other middle aged. Both spray painted.

In previous years, there would be hundreds in various degrees of undress. All having a good time. Even voyeurs like me. I sincerely hope the tradition does not end.

Enjoyed stone crabs again last night at Pier One. I was the only customer. Hovi the bartender. From Romania. Has been in Key West 5 years.

The Chart Room had about 15 minutes of activity. Otherwise, few customers.

Met Larry and Cindy. We are neighbors! They live on the golf course, also.

We chatted quite a while. Canadians. Sarnie, Ontario. Sounded like they have a family business. Mechanical contracting. Cindy serves as bookkeeper for the business.

Proud parents of two children and two grandchildren.

Liked them both. Hope to develop a relationship with them.

Problems developing post Irma. To be expected. Not everything works perfectly following a disaster like Irma.

The Monroe County School System announced that 320 students are homeless as a result of Irma. Many would not be had the City fathers and FEMA decided that the Irma homeless could no longer stay in local hotels paid by FEMA following last sunday. It was Fantasy Fest time. Time to make real money! Which I suspect will not be the case when the numbers are released.

If the kids are homeless, the parents also. Where are they living? In cars, trucks, mangroves and under the bridges.

Shame on us all!

Monroe County has requested 9,200 trailers. FEMA provides them. As of yesterday, 10 had arrived.

FEMA advises it only has 1,000 trailers allocated for the entire State of Florida.

How will the problem be solved? Will it be solved?

Enjoy your day!


Mark Watson, Happy Birthday!

Mark is one of the most beloved persons in Key West. Drag queen at Aqua, a Dueling Bartender, wednesday night Back Door bartender, present King of Fantasy Fest. On and on.

A nice guy besides.

I shall be sharing this day with him at a dinner party tonight.

My yesterday began with a haircut at Blown Away with Lori. My haircutter and friend of 15 years.

Lori is moving Blown Away. To a new building on White Street. Across from Fausto’s and Sandy’s. Next door to the building where I did my first radio show 10 years ago.

Then lunch at the Cuban Coffee Queen. Lovely Ruby working. The lady is talented. Hard working. Her work ethic impresses me.

Jay. Former chef at Sq. 1. Sq. 1 bought out. Jay moving on. Going to be the owner of his own operation. A sandwich shop. On Southard next to Bank of America. Around the corner from Key Lime Square. Near the Cuban Coffee Queen. Five door’s from Lori’s Blown Away.

From gourmet chef to sandwich maker. The sandwiches should be terrific!

Across the street are two coffee houses, a veggie restaurant, and Mr. T’s. A couple hundred feet up Southard, a noodle restaurant. All have been in business in the immediate area for many years. Jay should do well.

Opening, September 26.

Bocce last night. Ran into Jay. He has played bocce for years. My team Don’s Place doing well. I am the cheerleader. The team won all 3 games last night. 16-3, 16-0, 16-15.

It always happens that way. You kill the opposing team in the first two games. Then complacency sets in. An extra drink. Joking around. Concentration disappears.

Don’s was winning 14-7 in the third game. Needed only 2 points to win. All of a sudden, the game was tied 14 all. Finally, a one point victory eked out.

Norm is one of the player’s on Don’s team. A nice guy. We have been friends for years. Better friends because of bocce. One of my partner’s when I played.

Norm’s wife is involved community wise. She is a Rotarian. As was her father and grandfather before her. Rotarians have their hands in many of the Key West charity fundraisers. The Brewfest last week. She was one of the ones running the event. This week, she is working hard on Poker Run.

Ten thousand bikes start roaring into Key West today. For Poker Run Weekend. Big, expensive bikes. Drivers in black leather and crazy helmets. Look dangerous. Their ladies similarly dressed. Breasts dramatic. Intentionally so.

The humor is that most are doctors, lawyers and CPAs having what they consider a wild weekend. No more wild than any other, however. They will drink a bit too much, dine at the finest restaurants and have a great time!

You and me and the federal government are not the only one’s being hacked. The Monroe County Tourist Development Council’s website has been hacked. Florida Keys & Key West Facebook page 1.

Pics of beautiful Key West deleted. Replaced with photos of scantily clad provocatively posed women.

The Tourist Council cannot remove/delete the photos. Nor can they reach anyone at Facebook for help. Nor can they post an explanation.

My suggestion is they get a computer geek immediately to work on the problem. There are several in Key West.

The Mayflower departed England this day in 1620. Sixty six days later, landed at Provincetown. Not Plymouth as most of us have learned. Several months later, a group departed and landed at Plymouth. Of Plymouth Rock fame.

The Mayflower gave us the Mayflower Compact, Plymouth Rock, and Capt. Myles Standish.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt signed the Selective Service and Training Act into law this day in 1940. A draft law.

It is time we had a draft law again. Our professional voluntary army has been pushed too hard. Several deployments. As many as seven for some. No wonder 20 veterans a day are committing suicide.

I would require two years military service following high school graduation.

Guaranteed, I am going to receive a lot of comment on the position.

Enjoy your day!