DISNEY STILL GETS ME

A child at heart. I am glad I still am on occasion.

Last night was one of those times. I enjoyed the children’s favorite Aladdin Jr at the Waterfront Playhouse.

I never would have attended were it not for Larry Blackburn’s daughter Sydney playing the female lead Princess Jasmine and Donna and Terri’s granddaughter Lev performing as the Matron.

Both outstanding. The entire cast outstanding! The show professionally performed.

I stopped at the Chart Room first for a drink. Then Aladdin. Then back to the Chart Room again.

John bartending.

Glad I returned to the Chart Room. Met Tim and Stephanie. Locals, also. Though our paths never crossed before.

Tim works for David Wolkowsky. One of his responsibilities is taking care of Ballast Key.

When Tim mentioned he worked for David, I brought to his attention the KONK Life article I did several years ago about David. Tim surprised me. He had read the article. David had read it. David referred Tim to it.

At the time, David laughingly referred to the article as his obituary. A pang of guilt hit me for a moment. Then I realized such is David’s nature to comment in a joking fashion about some things.

It will be many more years before David has need of an obituary. He is only 98.

To those who may be unfamiliar with David, he is Mr. Key West. The Key West of today would not have been were it not for him. Even to Jimmy Buffett.

Buffett tells how David gave him his first paying job. At the Chart Room, no less. The same chart Room we were in last night. The same Chart Room David constructed as part of the Pier House which he built.

It was after 10 when I left the Chart Room. Had not eaten since breakfast. Stopped at Tavern ‘n Town on the way home. Tavern ‘n Town has added a Happy Hour from 9-11. Perfect for me last night!

Today an historical one in Key West. Uber and Lyft are finally allowed to provide service in Key West.

I read an article yesterday that Key West is the last major market for Uber and Lyft service. Disgraceful. We should have had it two years ago. However, the Key West Commission continues to operate via the Bubba system.

An even better example of the Bubba system in operation is that no new cab licenses have been issued in Key West for 75 years. Called taking care of your own, generation after generation.

Got a manicure thursday at Lee Nails.

No Tammy. I forgot she was taking her two children home to visit the family. Tammy is originally from Vietnam. I recall her telling me the trip would take something like 34 hours. Three or four stopovers included.

Husband Rickie stayed home. Someone had to run the business.

When I telephoned and discovered Tammy had left, I panicked. Who was going to do my nails? You, Rickie? No Mr. Lou, he said. You get a beautiful girl. The prettiest. Nina.

I could not place Nina. When I showed up friday, we met. Loverly! Came to the U.S. two years ago from one of the eastern bloc countries. Loves Key West people and weather.

Nina is 23 years old. A bashful 23.

Tammy had obviously left Nina with marching orders as to how I liked my nails done. Nina did a magnificent job. Especially the buffing.

Yesterday, I wrote about cursive writing. Most do not seem to appreciate handwriting as much as I do. It has to be my age. I learned to hand write when 6. The computer did not enter my life till many many years later. I am less adept with the computer than with handwriting.

My friend Tom in Des Moines believes there is no need for cursive today. Initially intended to speed things up from hand printing, today not needed. The computer is everything.

I mention cursive again this morning because typing on a screen came to be on June 29, 1975 around 10 in the evening. In a small California town.

Prior thereto, man had never hit a key and a letter appeared on a screen.

The mere fact that it happened gave birth to multiple changes in the way we live. The future of business changed, how we communicate with each other changed, etc. The world changed.

The responsible individual was Steve Wozniak.

Ten months later Wozniak and two others formed Apple. The other two, Steve Jobs and Ronald Wayne.

Last year, Apples revenue was in excess of $215 billion. Its employees, 116,00 world wide.

Enjoy your day!

YESTERDAYS FEW KNOW

I have gotten old. Eighty two in less than a week. Some recent experiences brought the fact clearly to mind.

I stopped into Verizon to learn how to wi-fi through my cell phone. The young lady working was also babysitting her two children. Six and eight. Summertime.  The Verizon store their day camp that day.

The kids were playing with their cell phones. I mentioned how smart kids are today. Laptops, cell phones, etc.

Mom agreed. She said she remembered when all she had was a flip phone. I would say she was in her late 20’s.

I immediately thought…..If she only knew!

I was born in 1935.

In the late 1930’s into the first part of the 1940’s, our phone was the corner grocer. No one had telephones, except business people. the grocer took calls for the block.

If a call came for my father, the grocer (his name was Frank) would go out on the street and yell…..Tell John he has a call! Someone would transfer the message to my Dad or to another neighbor to relate.

Then we got a telephone. A four party line. Meant four homes had the same line. If you picked up and heard talking, you hung up till the line was free.

We graduated to a two party line. Then the time came when the only line was ours. We had a private line.

A big deal!

Cell phones did not make an appearance till my mid law practice years. Big and bulky.

The phones got smaller. I recall the flip top.

I am absolutely amazed that my cell phone today is in effect a computer. I can do everything with it.

Only took eighty two years!

When I am gone, will anyone remember?

I was surprised to read recently that typewriters are making a come back. People join together with their vintage machines and have Type-Ins.

I took a typewriting course in high school. My parents bought me a new portable for college. A Smith-Corona. Part of the Super 5 Series. Portable.

Used it all the time in college. Term papers!

Ribbons to change. Always ended up with dirty fingers. Carbon paper for copies. Dirty fingers again. A mistake had to be corrected. A bit of erasing and whiting over.

Now, vintage typing parties!

Even writing came into play this week. Cursive writing. Handwriting.

I write. I can write my name and everything else.

No big deal for me. I learned in the first grade. It was called Palmer Method.

I mentioned earlier this week that at Dueling Bartenders monday night two young ladies sat next to me. At best in their late 20s.

They saw me making notes about our conversation. They said/asked…..You can cursive write?

They could not. They could not even write their names. Both had college degrees. Into well paying jobs. However, Bush 2’s no child left behind made them computer genius. But, not hand writers.

They were impressed I could write!

I have a lot more for today. However, I shall save it for another time.

Enjoy your day!

 

LlCENCE TO KILL / JEFFERSON STARSHIP / CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF

Recollections refreshed.

Key West happenings.

James Bond. A small part of the 1989 movie Licence to Kill was filmed in Key West. The rear area of 707 South Street. A wedding reception. Bond a guest.

The home recently sold for $5 million.

Tennessee Williams again. On this day in 1955, Cat On a Hot Tin Roof opened in New York City. An instantaneous hit. Won Williams his second Pulitzer Prize.

Jefferson Starship. An American rock band. The group has been around since 1974. Not all members the same. As time moved on, older performers dropped out to be replaced by new performers.

Jefferson Starship is performing at the Key West Theater sunday. On the saturday before at 3 pm, a free greet and meet is being held at the Gates Hotel. You must be a ticket holder to attend.

Spent my yesterday researching.

Visited Tammy at 6 for a manicure. Tammy her usual charming self. For a 34 year old, she is wise beyond her years. Has to be her Asian background.

Then to bocce. All of 10 minutes.

It suddenly got dark. A huge black cloud moved over us. Cell phone weather inquiries showed a huge green mass beginning to move over the lower keys.

At the same time, the wind blew up. Not a simple 20 mph. More! Much more! Dirt and sand swirling.

Everyone ran for their cars to get out.

Most of my group headed for Don’s Place. I decided to go straight home. I do not enjoy driving on US 1 when the rain is so heavy it is difficult to see.

Beat the rain home. Beat the rain in its entirety. The wind blew for a while. The rain never came. This morning, I looked outside to see if it had rained during the night. No. Everything dry.

Key West weather strange. Storms hit quickly. People are wise. They get inside quickly. Wind and rain not a pleasant sea shore combination.

Enjoy your day!

 

WORLD AIDS DAY

Today is World AIDS Day. Especially important in Key West. Too many lost over the years.

This morning’s Key West Citizen has an excellent front page article re this day.

At 4:30 this afternoon, the Candlelight Walk. Then at 6, the annual recollection ceremony. At the Edward B. Knight Pier. To remember loved ones lost to the disease.

The article notes an increase in HIV and AIDS cases in the past nine months. From 4 to 21. Sounds alarming. I doubt it is.

A new State law comes into play. This year the first for its imposition. The new law mandates HIV and AIDS testing as part of all annual physicals. Except where the patient opts out.

Increased testing means more positive results. Inevitable.

I completed my Key West Rotary history yesterday. Twenty six separate installments. Interesting to do. Onerous on occasion. Some days added as much as two hours additional work. A pleasure, never the less.

Martin’s for Happy Hour yesterday. With friend Joseph.

Joseph down to one cane. Big progress! He anticipates that soon there will be no need for a cane.

Conversation excellent. Joseph wants to do a blog. Needs to fill in his time now that he is retired. I told him I would have Sloan help him set up. I sense Joseph’s blog will be an intellectual one. Philosophical.

Martin’s food continues to be outstanding. I enjoyed small lamb chops and baked brie. Joseph, snails and schnitzle strips.

Magic bartending. From Poland. Many Poles have immigrated and settled in Key West. My Italian ancestors in the cold northeast many years ago. Weatherwise, the Poles selected better. Warm weather year round as opposed to biting cold winters.

Next stop, Don’s Place.

Chatted with Don and David.

Joanie is back. For the winter. Good to see her!

Quick stops on the way home at Walgreens and Publix.

Tonight, a manicure with Tammy at 7. Followed by dinner at 8 at Outback.

William Hackley writes that on this date in 1855, he paid William C. Dennis “for the hire of a negro woman.”

This Hackley has done in the past. Diana Millikan an historian of sorts. She believes one of the negro woman’s duties was washing Hackley during his morning baths. She believes it was a slave’s customary duty to be performed for her master. I told her to find authority for it somewhere. She is still looking.

The hurricane season ended yesterday. Hope hurricanes are aware that Key West should experience no further ones this year as November 30 has come and gone.

You can never be sure. I recall several years ago when October 31 was the end of hurricane season. We got hit by one the first week of November.

A big saturday awaits! The Christmas Parade. At 7 on Truman. Always fun. Especially for the kids. Tons of candy thrown from parade floats.

Enjoy your day!

 

GREAT HAPPY HOUR

I am not an enthusiast of Happy Hours. Too many people, too much confusion. After a number of years, I did a happy hour last night. It was just right!

Martin’s. Four to six. Appetizers/tapas half price. well drinks the same.

Food outstanding! I had 3 little lamb chops and brie.

Crowd perfect. After one hour, every seat filled. No one standing.

Finally ran into Dan Reardon. Thought he was skipping Key West this year. We are Syracuse fans. When he loved me, we watched games together. Now, no. I watch them from home so he does not bother with me.

We agreed to meet for saturday’s Syracuse game. We thought it was the next one. A saturday game. Syracuse/Georgia Tech. However, there is a game tonight. At 7. Against Notre Dame. Syracuse a 3 point favorite. Surprising.

I will watch tonight’s game from home. A triple header! The game, the Republican debate, and Trump’s solitary debate. An exciting evening ahead!

Dan, lets not forget each other saturday.

Followed up with a visit to the Little Room Jazz Club. Bobby Nesbitt time. Ran into Lynda and Bob Frechette. Bobby always good. A pleasure to listen to him sing.

Then to Sq. 1. I was on the road.

Karen and Aaron at Sq. 1. Had not seen them in a while.

My day yesterday began with the anti-gravity treadmill at Body Owners. New found friend David there.

Hurried to Lee Nails afterwards for a manicure with Tammy. Always a pleasant experience. Tammy a terrific person!

Tammy’s business amazes me. There are few customers. All of a sudden the place fills up. In a matter of five minutes.

I am always running out of food. Yesterday, even bread. Had to stop at Publix to pick up a few things.

Finally got home at 2 in the afternoon. Had to leave for Martin’s at 3:45. Too much activity for one day.

Trump a disaster. Even if he wins the Republican nomination. Lacks the balance to be President. He is a hot head. A harsh one. Too emotional. Appears to lack control when attacked.

Learned something yesterday. The cars soon to come out that drive themselves will probably have a different type steering wheel. A horizontal bar replacing it. Just like cars first built almost a century ago!

Enjoy your day!

NO BLOG TODAY

No blog today. I have poison in my pen. Better I write nothing at all.

CHRISTMAS RADIO SHOW

Part of my blog talk radio show last night was devoted to Christmas. A first time venture.

I enjoyed it. Hopefully the show was well received.

What I did was share some parts of this week’s KONK Life column An American Christmas. From the Puritans to George Washington to the Civil War. Threw in some pagan background. Particularly sources of Christmas things such as the Christmas tree, mistletoe, carols and gift giving.

The KONK Life Christmas column hits the stands tomorrow. It will be linked to my Key West Lou website thursday.

A dermatologist visit yesterday. My head looks like it has been through a meat grinder.

I spent time yesterday fine tuning last night’s blog talk radio show Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Did the show at 9. As indicated, part of the show was devoted to Christmas. I followed up the Christmas portion with a discussion of homeless children. Santa Claus will not be visiting most of them.

The greatest nation in the world has just less than three million homeless children. They live/sleep in abandoned cars, in woods, under card board boxes, under bridges, where ever. They go to school unbathe and without breakfast.

Does not speak well for our society. Does not speak well for our governmental leaders who bear the most responsibility.

Today is the anti-gravity treadmill and Christmas shopping. Tonight, probably out with Don.

Note I did not get to Christmas shop monday. Here it is two days before Christmas and there is nothing to put under the tree. Trust me, I will get it all done today. I have no choice.

Syracuse beat Montana State last night 82-60. Syracuse does not have a legitimate tall man. Neither does Montana State. Our tall man was taller than theirs, however. Helped big time.

I could not get the game on TV. It was not where I thought it would be and nowhere else.

I watched the game on the internet. Streaming. The small screen a bit uncomfortable. However, I at least got to watch the game.

On December 22, 1860, Florida officials met in Tallahassee to decide if Florida should secede and join the Confederacy. They did. Key West as a practical matter did not.

There were a number of reasons why Key West remained loyal to the Union. One was that most of the people living in Key West were transplanted New Englanders and Bahamians. Key Westers celebrated the day the Emancipation Proclamation was signed, for example.

Key West became important preventing supplies in reaching the Confederacy. Forty Union warships rested in Key West waters. They captured or sunk 200 Confederate vessels.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

JUSTICE?

A Saudi millionaire was acquitted of raping a teen in London. He said he tripped and accidentally penetrated her.

Juries are finding it difficult to find guilt world wide. Many police/black killings in the U.S. and now this in England.

Justice is moving farther and farther away.

The anti-gravity treadmill in the morning yesterday. I am increasing the miles. A tenth here, a tenth there. Ever upward. I worry I may be pushing myself.

A manicure with Tammy at noon. She is representative of the Asian female mind.

When she lived in Vietnam, the man was king. Women were nothing. Everything was done for the man.

It is different in the United States. She is free. Independent. Can do what she wants.

I am happy Tammy’s husband did not marry her in Vietnam. They met here in Florida. He knew he was not getting an old country woman.

Don’s Place first last night. After a chat or two, we headed to the VFW. Don wanted to go. Stan and Claire, also.

Don was captured as soon as we walked into the VFW. The Commodore grabbed him and took Don around introducing him. Then a former Commodore came by and took Don away to introduce him to some others.

Stan knew many. Turns out he is a former Navy man who was stationed at Bocca Chica. He worked as a cook for the VFW for a while. It was old home week for him.

No one I knew, except Schmegly from last week. One more person, also? When I walked in a white haired gent introduced me to his wife. As his barber. I smiled and walked on. He was seated nearby. A little later he caught my attention and said…..My barber!

I felt bad disappointing him. I told him I was not his barber or a barber. He left with a puzzled look on his face. Made me feel bad I was not his barber.

The VFW was having a party. for one of its members. A 92 year old World War II veteran. He fought the war in a submarine.

The birthday cake was delicious.

This week’s KONK Life column The President Could Not Spell is available in two places this morning. One is KONK Life which is on the stands. The other is my Key West Lou website (.keywestlou.com) where it is linked.

Enjoy your day!

NO COMPROMISE WITH LIFE

The crosswalks on Northern Boulevard are a disaster waiting to happen. Local officials not responsible. It was a State job. The State made the decisions.

Lights are needed at the crosswalks. The State is considering yellow lights. Key West leaders red lights. Louis, red lights.

It appears the State is pushing a compromise. You do not compromise with life. The need for the lights and the color of them is a life and death situation.

The Boulevard is a race track. Do the right thing!

Got a manicure yesterday at noon. Love Tammy!

Two ladies getting pedicures. Sharing a bottle of champagne. Flutes and all. The ladies knew how to live!

A fish sandwich at Hogfish last night. Fair sized crowd. Sat at an uncrowded bar and read the newspapers.

Super Boat Races start saturday. A whole week. End the following saturday. A major event!

This marks the 35th year the event has been held.

The big boats have started coming in. Long and sleek. Beauties. They will be parked everywhere.

Nothing like watching the races. The sound of the boats combined with the roar of the low flying helicopters exciting. Keeps you on edge.

“I’m Just Wild About Harry.” It is two days in a row I am writing about Harry Truman and the 1948 Presidential election. The song intro is not because I like Harry. It is what the crowd sang on November 5 when Truman returned to Washington after election.

Remember, Truman was supposed to lose. Not even a close election.

Reports indicate two-thirds of Washington turned out to welcome him. Described also as hundreds of thousands. They lined the streets the motorcade followed from Union Station to the White House.

The Washington Post predicted Dewey would win. As the parade passed by the Washington Post building, a large banner was visible on the building. “Welcome Home from the Crow Eaters.”

The National Catholic Reporter ran a featured article November 2. It had to do with pedophile priests. The article stated that in any area where a sex abuse situation occurred, people left the Church. Such resulted in a loss of cash flow. Not enough people putting money in the basket on sunday.

The numbers are interesting. The article says legal payments via settlement or otherwise to victims was $3 billion. I have read elsewhere, $4 billion. Whatever. Contrasted against the loss of Church collections, the claim is the Church has and is losing $2.3 billion per year.

I somewhat disagree with pedophilia being the reason many Catholics walked away. Many had left earlier. For me, it was birth control in the 1960s. My generation was unhappy with the Church’s position.

The decline in Church attendance obviously started long before the pedophilia discoveries. The Church was not paying attention.

After the recent Synod which closed last month, I fear the Church has failed to learn its lessons. Except for Pope Francis and a handful of bishops, the remaining bishops are not in accord with his changes to attract back Catholics who left.

This week’s KONK Life is on the streets. My column this week is The Looting of Social Security. One of the best I have written. Read it, if you have the chance.

The article was linked to my Key West Lou website this morning. keywestlou.com.

Bocce tonight. We could use three wins. I am a pig!

Enjoy your day!

 

ROSE TATTOO / TENNESSEE WILLIAMS / DUNCAN ST.

The time is this week 1954. The place Duncan Street in Key West. The filming of the movie The Rose Tattoo began.

A great movie. Loved it! Starred Burt Lancaster and Anna Mangani. Mangani won the Academy Award for her performance.

The movie was an adaptation of a Tennessee Williams play. Tennessee Williams lived on Duncan St. He wrote the play while living on Duncan St. The house where the movie was filmed was on Duncan Street. Two doors up from Tennessee Williams’ home. Both Williams and the Rose Tattoo houses still stand on Duncan.

Lisa lives on Duncan. Her home is 1 1/2 blocks from the Williams home.

Key West loves Harry Truman. Harry Truman loved Key West.

On November 2, 1948, Truman was elected President. He defeated New York Governor Tom Dewey. Truman was not favored to win. A big underdog. No one gave him a chance. Except Truman himself.

Congress at the time was Republican. They blocked him at every move. Some what like today’s Congress and Obama. Only worse. Truman campaigned against the worst Congress ever, as he put it.

Corporate America disliked Truman. Vehemently.

An example is what occurred while Truman was campaigning. Campaigning was done from the back platform of the last car on a train in those days. The train traveled all over the country.

Truman was short on funds. Again, he was not expected to win. Few were contributing to him. The train and crew were leased. The bill was overdue.

The train was stopped by the railroad somewhere in the middle of nowhere between two towns. Truman was told the bill had to be paid in full. If not, Truman and his entourage had to get off.

Truman threw in what he had in his pocket. His supporters did likewise. They had just enough to pay the bill. Truman proceeded on his way.

The distaste the railroad owners had for Truman obvious. Doing this to a President of the United States! Disrespectful!

Politics played the same all the time. Hard ball.

Did my blog talk radio show last night. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Love dong the show!

One of the topics clearly reflects government waste.

The Department of Defense built a gas station in Afghanistan. Nothing special. A run of the mill gas station. The contracted cost for construction $3 million. A lot for a gas station. Especially since a similar one had been built the previous year in Pakistan for $500,000.

The final cost of construction was $43 million. Wow! $3 million for the construction. $40 million for overhead.

The gas station built was a compressed natural gas automobile station. So built because of the great supply of natural gas in Afghanistan.

The only problem was the people had cars that were petroleum operated. They had no use for the new station. Making the necessary adjustments to change over to a natural gas operated vehicle was not financially feasible. The cost was more than the average Afghanistani made in a year.

The Defense Department had a task force in charge of spending with regard to the closed gas station. When the Department was asked why the increase, they said they did not know/ could not tell because the task force had closed down in March.

And they want to cut Social Security! Cut waste!

I would like to know who made out on this Afghanistan gas station.

Last week, I reported on my radio show that the Muslim immigrants in Germany were overloading the hospitals. One problem was they refused to be treated by female personnel. Doctor, nurse, or otherwise.

Yesterday, it was announced that Muslims presently in camps in Germany would not accept food from women.

Beggars can’t be choosers. They should be grateful they are receiving free medical and food.

European banks are beginning to hurt. Good! May their American counterparts do likewise.

European banks are cutting costs. A large Spanish bank with 2,300 branches     now cleans windows only six times a year instead of twelve. Another Spanish bank with many branches kills the electricity at 7 pm. Another bank requires staff to clean their desks every wednesday. Called Wet Wipe Wednesday. Office space is being reduced.

One hundred thousand banking jobs in the Eurounion have been cut since 2012.

My left chest which I injured in a fall last week started hurting big time again last night. I don’t know why. Kept me up all night. Not one moments sleep. A pain pill did not help. Feels better at the moment.

I am going to skip the treadmill this morning. Will keep a noon manicure appointment with Tammy, however.

Enjoy your day!