SHIRLEY VALENTINE

Love Shirley Valentine!

A 1989 British film. Warm and touching. The story of a middle aged woman who visits Greece and decides to remain. Her love and life come into play. The wakings and complexities of middle age.

The film touched me. I have reseen it several times on television.

When on the London stage, it was a one woman show. The film was expanded to include many characters.

Key West’s Fringe Theater is performing Shirley Valentine May 17-27. I do not know how many in the cast. What I do know is I plan on seeing the show. Everyone should.

Last night, another evening at the Chart Room. The bar full. One seat at the far corner of the bar available. Said hello to John.

The gentleman next to me said, “You’re Key West Lou.”

It was Mark from five years ago. He had a better memory than me. We had met in the Chart Room five years ago. We spent a couple of hour last night chatting.

Mark 55. He has spent most of his adult life in what I would describe the sophisticated medical supplies field. Does a lot of traveling. Off to Munich next.

Married, lives in Boston.

Politically, a Trump fan. Made our conversation even more interesting.

Hope we run into each other again in the days he has left in Key West.

Left the Chart Room hungry. Was heading to Hot Tin Roof when I recalled the cupboard was bare once again. Skipped the Hot Tin Roof and headed to Publix. One of my purchases was a barbecued chicken which I enjoyed later at home.

The Minimal Regatta coming! Technical name the Schoonerwharf Minimal Regatta. The 26th annual one. May 28.

I am providing early notice so you can get ready to participate, if you so desire.

The race is directly in front of Schooner Wharf. The boats all man made. Materials skimped on, of course.

The following represent ALL the materials that may be used in the boat’s construction: 1 sheet of plywood, 1 pound of plywood fasteners, 1 roll of 2″ x 60 yards duct tape, and 2 2 x 4s.

Success is not dependent on sea prowess. It is all dependent on constructing a boat that does not fall apart and sink.

A fun time!

The Minimal Regatta reminds me of what grown people do in Key west. Return to their childhoods!

Several years ago, I wrote a lengthy column in KONK Life on embalming. Surprisingly, the only country where embalming is a common practice is the United States. Not legally required by federal law. A few state laws mandate it.

Lincoln’s funeral train brought embalming to the attention of the American public. The train was carrying Lincoln’s body to Springfield, Illinois for burial. The trip took 13 days. Traveled through seven states and 180 cities.

Decomposition of Lincoln’s body was a concern. Especially the decomposition odors that would emanate  from it. The decision was to embalm.

A popularity for embalming grew slowly over the years following Lincoln’s burial.

This past week Trump signed another Executive Order. This one establishing an Advisory Commission on Election Integrity. Commission seats are being filled rapidly.

Trump’s puppet Vice President Mike Pence is chairman. Commission members appointed thus far are state officials. Most of whom already have a track record of supporting state laws that minimize a person’s right to vote.

A stacked deck.

Trump continues to believe he would have received 3 million votes more had there not been irregularities at the polls. All information/investigation to date reveal no voter fraud.

Wasted money, wasted time. To satisfy one person’s ego.

Enjoy your day!

 

I AM CONCERNED…..

I am concerned. I am uncomfortable with the bombings. I do not approve of them.

There is a silence that permeates the past couple of days. When domestic issues were at the forefront, everyone was discussing what was going on. Especially related to healthcare. People on the street as well as the media.

We bomb Syria and Afghanistan, the silence is overwhelming. This weekend it could be North Korea. When North Korea, the bombings will be big time. Not 59 missiles or the mother of all bombs.

ISIS could still retaliate. On our shores. Several Boston marathon type hits. North Korea, a disaster. I envision the USS Vinson being hit and possibly sunk.

If we stay on the road of these military adventures, expect disaster to strike our shores. You hit me, I am going to hit you back and harder. We are inviting such action.

Then everyone will be talking.

Headed to bocce last night. No one there. No bocce. A bye night.

I headed over to Don’s Place. Sure to run into my team mates. I did. David, Stan, and Clare. Also, Frankie, Sandra and Mike. A couple of drinks and good conversation.

Stopped at Publix on the way home. Still dieting. Will not sunday. I buy diet groceries in small amounts so extra Publix visits required.

Donna telephoned while I was wandering the aisles of Publix. Invited me to dinner tonight. I am to be Donna and Terri’s guest at Conch Republic for stone crabs.

Can’t wait.

The streets were flooded yesterday. Rain extremely heavy in the morning. High tide mid morning. Never fails.

The drama continues. Count von Cosel and his love Elena Hoyos Mesa.

Von Cosel stole her body from the grave. He kept her remains in his bed at home for 7 years. Then discovered. He was never tried. Statute of limitations.

Von Cosel had a large mausoleum constructed for her remains in the Key West Cemetery. Some time later, von Cosel left Key west for good. Two hours after he left Key West, the mausoleum exploded. Fractured into several pieces.

It was believed von Cosel was responsible. Every one assumed he was guilty. Never charged. The town figured he was crazy and good riddance that he had let Key West.

Today, a sad day in American history. Lincoln shot. He was at the Ford Theater in Washington.  Shot in the back of his head.

He was taken across the street to the Petersen House. A boarding house. He was placed on a bed in a back room.

Lincoln died early the next morning.

I visited Washington as a tourist several years ago. For a whole week. My visits included the Ford Theater and the Petersen House.

Two recollections. The Ford Theater was small. The other was the bed that Lincoln lay on in the Petersen House. It had to be too small for a man of his stature.

Enjoy your day! If you are Christian, remember Jesus some time between noon and 3.

 

WHY NOT KEY WEST

Uber can operate in Broward and Dade Counties. Uber cannot operate in Key West. It is against the law. A local law.

The reason Key West prohibits Uber and Lyft is what is known as the Bubba system. Take care of your friends. In this case, the taxi companies.

A close knit group. A monopoly in effect for those who have licenses to operate.

It has been a significant number of years since Key West has given a taxi license to another company or person.

Our City Commissioners: Wake up! The future is here!

A lot of running around yesterday.

Want a cell phone stand. Went everywhere. Verizon, Office Max, etc. No one sells stands. Probably because a cheap item. I will have to order one over Amazon.

Publix for groceries. Crowded for a monday.

Spent time preparing for tonight’s blog talk radio show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Nine my time.

Topics tonight include Trump making friends with a corrupt Egypt, Jared in Iraq, Pentagon issues new order prohibiting disclosure of number of ground troops in Iraq and Syria, one robot replacing 6 human jobs.

Also, a Venezuela update, 8 Ivy League colleges receiving more in federal funds than 16 states, Trump/NAFTA and oil industry pressure, private prisons using detained immigrants as free labor, drug company overcharges Veterans Affairs Department $20 million, and more.

A fast moving eye opening half hour show. Join me. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

The final game of the Final Four last night. North Carolina won. Beat Gonzaga by 5 or so points.

One of the most unexciting games ever. Not the fault of the players. The referees responsible. Called too many fouls in the second half. Many bullshit. Never gave the kids an opportunity to play, to get into a flow.

Trump seems to suck up to the not so nice countries. Many whose standards are less than ours.

Yesterday, it was Egypt. The Egyptian President visited. Trump embraced him as our boy! Told him he had Trump’s personal friendship.

The present Egyptian administration took over as a result of the 2011 Arab Spring revolt. Obama and Hilary wrong at the time. They supported the revolutionaries against Mubarak. Mubarak who had been a true friend for years.

The new Egyptian administration bad people. Its track record despicable. Contrary to american values in many respects.

It is told Lincoln dreamed of his assassination 10 days before it occurred. Seven days after the dream, he told his friend Ward Hill Laman about it.

Three days later, an assassin’s bullet killed Lincoln.

The following reported in a recent Washington Post article.

Vice-President Pence has some quirky (my description) religiously motivated actions. Founded in the first instance by Billy Graham. Never be alone with a woman, avoid temptation.

Pence believes a man should never dine alone with a woman. Nor work alone with women…..I don’t work with women. If they’re attractive, I’m too tempted. And if they’re not what’s the point?

Pence does not attend an event where alcohol is served unless his wife is with him.

The best is the Mrs. Butterworth episode.

Mrs. Butterworth is a syrup. Sold in a container the shape of a bare woman. Pence was at a table waiting for others including his wife. A Mrs. Butterworth bottle in his line of vision. He asked the waiter to remove it from the table till his wife arrived.

His wife arrived. Pence asked the waiter to pour syrup out of the Mrs. Butterworth container on his pancakes. Pence did not wish to touch the bottle.

Crazy? Strange at the very least.

Enjoy your day!

 

ONE LYFT IN TOWN

If ever a community is in need of Uber and Lyft, it is Key West. Taxi service slow, vehicles filthy. Locals and tourists alike do not receive the door to door service they are entitled to. Uber and Lyft would assist in relieving traffic congestion.

Uber tried a couple of years ago. Key West’s Bubba system won out. Taxi owners won. Uber left.

The Florida House of Representatives had a bill filed this week structuring requirements for online car service. Considered the beginning of getting Uber and Lyft on the streets of all Florida communities. The bill still has the State Senate to go through and then must be signed into law by the Governor.

Lyft is testing the waters. The bill is not required. However, municipalities have been using the excuse of waiting for State direction before allowing Uber and Lyft to provide service.

The Key West story.

Lyft is testing the waters. A Lyft vehicle has been operating in Key West since thursday. Only one.

How will Key West react to this solitary Lytle vehicle? Stop the service? Arrest the driver as they did with Uber? Let this sole driver slide into the signing of the new law?

My one day time trip away from home yesterday afternoon was to Publix. Prices continue to edge up. Amazing! We soon will have to raise our own produce and animals for slaughter (said with tongue in cheek).

I question how people can continue to afford groceries. Especially in a stagnant income situation.

Spent most of the day lying around. Being lazy. Read, slept, watched TV.

Wonderful evening! Enjoyed the company of Tim and Linda at the Hot Tin Roof. Both Madison County, New York residents. Visiting Key West. Ted lives in Cazenovia. Linda in a small town outside Canastota.

Ted is a former Court Clerk. Linda worked in the judicial system. Ted here for a month. Staying at the Banyan. Linda visiting for a week. Both good company. Enjoyed Linda, especially.

We started at 7. We were one of the last tables to leave. The sign of a great evening.

Weekends are unusually busy at the Hot Tin Roof. Extra help hired for the weekends. Most, young immigrants. Hard working! Impressive!

I do one Facebook video a day. A Key West Lou one. Number of followers increasing. Dramatically.

Interestingly, most blog readers are not video followers and vice versa.

One of the Sunday morning talk show commentators made what I consider a comically true statement re Trump. Something to the effect…..If Trump wants to find he is #1 in everything, he should buy a mirror.

Those of you who comment do so at your own risk. Some days are brutal. Today, not. An excellent review of healthcare problems. Zeroing in on one party payer, Medicare, and supplemental plans.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

 

 

 

DOGFISH DEMANDS HOGFISH RENAME TO SPEARFISH

It’s called growing pains. Microbreweries/minibreweries have been gaining in popularity in recent years. Competition arises. The older guys don’t like the newer ones. Pressure arises. Pressure brought by the older companies upon the newer companies.

Hogfish have been around since time immemorial. Fished with a spear.

Dogfish have been around equally long. A  shark species.

A company in Delaware whose name contains Dogfish wants local Florida Keys Brewing Co. to change the name of one of its beers. Hogfish. To avoid confusion. Don’t want people ordering Hogfish thinking it is a Dogfish brew.

Ridiculous. I do not see it in this situation. No one has a singular hold on fish names. Especially under these circumstances.

Florida Keys Brewing may be considering capitulation. I can understand. Legal costs in such a case can be burdensome. Especially for a relatively new company.

I would take one last shot at the problem. Florida Keys Brewing should tell Dogfish they will change Hogfish to Spearfish if Dogfish changes its name to Shark.

What’s good for the goose is good for the gander!

Chart Room last night. Drunk lady not there. I assume she was a tourist. I had never seen her before and hope to never see her again. Bill bartending.

Ran into Ted. Ted from Wampsville, NY. How many of you have heard of Wampsville? Wampsville is a small community in central New York. County seat for Madison County.

Ted is a fellow lawyer. Spent most of his career as a court clerk. A responsible position. The brains behind the judge.

Ted has vacationed in Key West for years. This year for a whole month. Retired.

The past two years, Ted has stopped into the Chart Room looking for me. Our paths did not cross. We exchanged cell phone numbers and e-mail addresses to avoid such a problem in the future. We intend to have dinner together before he leaves.

Ted and I exchanged legal talk. I tried cases in the Madison County Courthouse over the years. I enjoyed the conversation. Lawyer talk. A while since I have had someone to do it with.

John was outside at the Beach Bar. Visited him. Cold!!! The Beach Bar sits on open water. Low 60s with 20 mph wind.

Met Brian and Shanon at the Beach Bar. Nice people. From Columbus, Ohio. I love Columbus. Spent many a day working there on Nationwide matters.

Brian a realtor. Shanon in HR work.

First time in Key West. Having a great time!

On the way home, stopped at Publix. Cupboard really bare. Spent twice what I normally do.

Watched a bit of the Syracuse/UNC-Greensboro game. Syracuse won 90-77.

William Hackley still having dental problems. 1856 had to be a painful year. He was up most of the night with intense teeth pain. Went to Dr. Walton’s office in the morning. Dr. Walton “sacrified” his gums and “cut down to the roots.”

Dentistry years ago not as it is today. Pain!!! I recall my visits in the late 1930s and 1940s. Today, almost painless.

I can imagine how painful it had to be in 1856. Dentistry? Or, butchery?

The North Roosevelt Boulevard cross-walks continue to be in the news. Someone wrote to Citizens’ Voice re the danger: “Next to all the cross-walks on North Roosevelt Boulevard should be kiosks where you can buy life insurance.”

Something bothers me. I am a liberal at heart. As most of you are aware. I believe conservatives generally are on the wrong track.

The Key West Library is permitting its facility to be used at noon today for a two hour meeting. The group the Florida Keys Indivisibles. Political. Democratic at heart. Popularly referred to as bird doggers.

The organization is an activist training seminar. Speakers I assume trained provocateurs. The cry to organize and oppose. Require legislators to attend a town meeting, attend town meetings yourself, tie up with similar groups across the etc.country, be confrontational,  etc.

Will the rhetoric of the campaign ever cease?

Sounds like a guerrilla training camp to me.

Bocce tonight.

Have to hustle. A haircut with Lori at noon.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

TRUMPELSTILTSKIN

Trumpelstiltskin applies.

Think about it.

My President is a bully. A bully avoids confrontation. Confrontation in this instance is Trump’s appearance at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner. He can hand it out. Fears getting it in return.

Go face to face. In a congenial setting. The situation cannot get worse. Something better might come from it.

Chart Room first last night.

Met two former upstate New York neighbors. Mark and Marge Rapport. Formerly of Lowville, New York.

Lowville is the end of the world. Roughly fifty miles north of Utica. Snow like you would not believe!

Mark and Marge spent 7 1/2 years residing in Lowville. Mark was the Administrator of the Lewis County General Hospital. Largest employer in the area. Mark today retired. Marge, also. From nursing.

Lowville is in Lewis County. One of the largest land counties in New York State. Correspondingly, one of the smallest population wise.

The Village of Lowville is the County seat. Its population 3.5 thousand. The Village is part of the Town of Lowville. The Town’s population 5 thousand. Includes the Villages’s 3.5 thousand.

Ain’t much to do nights in Lowville. Marital sex the frequent event. Marriages strong because of it.

Turin is a few miles south of Lowville. Turin also in Lewis County. A big ski area. Chris Rounds is a well known Key West figure. Presently owner of La Te Da and Fantasy Fest king. A good guy overall.

Chris formrly of Turin. Born and raised there.

I mentioned Chris to Mark and Marge. Though they do not know him, I suspect they will be looking him up.

Met three charming ladies. Becky, Michelle, and Donna. All in the financial field. Becky a retired CPA. Michelle an internal auditor for a hospital. Donna a senior financial analyst.

The ladies all originally from Iowa. Becky and Donna still reside there. Michelle now in New Orleans.

Spent some time chatting with Becky. Lovely lady. Charming personality. Would enjoy running into her again before she leaves Key West.

The three were on their way to a drag show at 801 later. Their first.

For me, it was off to La Te Da’s outside bar for dinner. Then a brief stop at Publix to pick up some groceries. What a bachelor does on a saturday night in Key West.

Key West people compatible. Tolerate most things. One happy family. For real.

Sometimes an outsider tests our tolerance.

A sad occurrence one in the morning on 2/23. 1200 block of Duval.

Two Key Westers going home on their bicycles. Some one on a scooter/moped came up behind them and then in front. Hit one of the bikes causing it to overturn.

The trouble maker was calling the bicyclists faggots and other vile names. Shouted at them: “You live in Trump City now!”

Sick bastard. He will be caught. Police arrived. Witnesses.

Another sick incident. Friday morning just before 6 am. Two young girls were waiting for their 6 am school bus pick up. Two men stopped in a pick up truck and offered them a ride. The girls refused. One of the mothers drove up with a bottle of water her daughter had forgotten. The men drove away.

Fortunately a rare occurrence in the lower Keys. My concern is the 6 am pick up time. The schools have to do better. These kids are getting up at 5 am to start their day. Wrong! Time for the school board to rework things.

Big day ahead. Probably will never leave the house.

Sloan at noon. Syracuse/Louisville on TV at 2. The Academy Awards tonight.

Not a bad day!

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

I FOUND MY BIRTH MOTHER

I found my birth mother. A touching statement. Made not by me, but by another.

Let me share her story.

I was in Aqua last night watching Dueling Bartenders. Jean and Joe Thornton there, also. Jean introduced me to her sister. I was not aware Jean had a sister. A half sister. Her name Laura.

Jean was 37 when she received a telephone call from Laura. Laura then 25. Jean did not know she had a sister. Laura said, I am your sister, I am looking for our mother.

Jean was in Birmingham at the time. Laura in Nashville.

Their mother had not made Jean aware she had given birth to another child when Jean was 12 years old.

Laura was taken in by another family and eventually adopted by another.

Laura told Jean she wanted to meet her mother and Jean. Jean made the necessary arrangements and in due course the three met. Their Mother told Jean she had kept the birth secret.

A glorious meeting. Tears and joy. A unit since.

Laura is in key West visiting. She will be here till the end of the month. She now resides in Louisville.

Laura told me she refers to the woman who adopted/raised her as her Mom and her discovered mother as her birth mother.

Jean and Laura loving sisters. So they appeared and acted. Jean could not wait to introduce her sister to me.

God is good. He provided the path and determination for Laura to successfully discover her birth mother and sister.

A lucky threesome.

While still at Aqua, a lovely young lady approached and asked if I was Key West Lou. Her name, Pat Grady. A Key West resident. I am fortunate. A loyal blog reader. Thank you, Pat.

Great game last night! Clemson beat the perennial victor Alabama. By a touchdown made with one second remaining on the clock. The final score 35-31.

Wild!

Tonight Syracuse/West Virginia. West Virginia a 4.5 point favorite. I will stick my neck out. If Syracuse plays as it has in its last two game, Syracuse will win decisively.

I continue to learn.

Enzio Pinza was a great singer and movie actor in the 1950s. He was vacationing at the Casa Marina.

The mood at various times of the day at the Casa can be revealing, overwhelming. At some point one evening, Pinza was seated on the Casa’s terrace overlooking the ocean and moon. He was so taken by the sight, he stood and sang Some Enchanted Evening. A song he had made popular.

The Casa and Pinza singing a fitting combination.

I am listening to Session’s Senate confirmation hearing. Just began. Two Democratic senators have already spoken who have failed the Nation. Both were supportive of his nomination. Disgusting. The man is an obvious bigot. Will work to restrict civil and voting rights. Not support them.

I am ashamed of the two Democratic senators. They lacked the courage to do the right thing.

I have to hustle. Barb is visiting for two weeks. I pick her up at the airport in an hour.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

THE EARLIEST SCROOGE OF RECORD

Christmas today is not the same as those of yesterday.

The holiday under different names was celebrated centuries before the birth of Christ. Pagan in substance. Drunkenness, sexual orgies, human sacrifice, etc.

What follows is a brief history of Christmas as practiced in early America. Specifically, the 1600s and 1700s.

The Puritans were the earliest Scrooges of record. Descendants of the English Reformation. Christmas had no place in England because of the pagan history of the holiday. Oliver Cromwell banned the practice of Christmas in England.

The Puritans did not recognize Christmas nor would they permit the few who wanted to to practice it. Christmas was banned in Boston from 1659-1681.

Colonials during the American Revolution did not recognize the holiday. English influence prevailed.

Several years after the Revolution, a handful of colonists began celebrating Christmas. The English influence no longer carried the weight it did prior to the Revolution. It was not Christmas as we know it. The event was rowdy. Similar to Mardi Gras and Fantasy Fest.

Tomorrow, I will trace Christmas in America a bit further. The story interesting.

Spent 1.5 hours yesterday morning getting examined. All kinds of tests. All that remains is the actual physical by the doctor which will take place next week.

Stopped at Publix afterwards. Needed a few things. Very few shoppers. However, those that were there were pushing extremely full carts to the cash registers. Early Christmas grocery shoppers.

Peter Max will be in Key West in February. Three separate visits. He will be showing at the Key West Gallery.

His visit exciting!

The Berlin terrorist was caught and killed in Milan.

All Italian cities are beautiful. Milan perhaps the most beautiful. I have visited several times.

Milan is a business and governmental center. Its people as beautiful as the City.

The Piazza del Duomo is one of Milan’s most exciting areas.

The Milan Cathedral aka Duomo di Milan sits at one end of the Piazza. Huge. Magnificent. Steeples galore. Took almost six centuries to build.

I recall one day when the heat was getting to me. I needed cool. Air conditioning is not as prevalent in Italy as in the U.S. Electricity not sufficient to air condition everything. Especially a huge cathedral.

Churches are always cool. Thick stone walls, small colored windows.

I went inside the Cathedral. I fell asleep for two hours. Slept till an attendant/guard nudged me awake. Told me I could not sleep in the Cathedral.

On one side of the Pizza sits a three story stone building. The second floor has a huge balcony. Mussolini stood on the balcony shouting to the crowded Piazza…..War, War, War! He was announcing Italy’s entrance into what would become World War II.

A few blocks off the Piazza is the Convent of Santa Maria delle Grazie. The home of the Last Supper. Painted by Leonardo da Vinci in 1495.

The Last Supper is painted on the wall of the dining room. Quite large. 15′ x 29′.

I never  knew it was that large or painted on a wall till I saw the painting for the first time.

An awesome sight! The painting captures the instant moment when Jesus revealed to his friends that one of them would betray him. Da Vinci captured what would have been the shock and rage on the faces of the apostles.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

LAST SNOWFALL IN FLORIDA KEYS

Last snowfall in Florida Keys? There has never been one. A real one. A year or two ago, Howard Livingston had many pounds of ice ground up and sprayed on his Summerland property. Snow everywhere. Deep snow.

Lynda Frechette is responsible for my snow reference this morning. Her weekly blog had attached a page from an old ConchTV.com issue. A comment from the page…..There has never been a recorded snowfall in the Florida island chain  since the National Weather Service began keeping records in 1870.

If we ever get snow, there should be no question in anyone’s mind that global warming exists.

The Arctic storm beginning to hit the northeast will be in the Florida Keys tonight. Temperature in the high 60s. Then normal 80s by day weather for about ten days. At that time, the Polar Vortex will hit causing some cold in the Florida Keys.

Haircut with Lori yesterday morning. She has a new shop on Whitehead. New building across from Fausto’s. Lovely! Modern in appearance. Spacious.

Then to Publix to pick up a few things.

Pineapples for sale. I took one and drove the cart around the store with the pineapple sitting upside down. No one approached me, male or female.

I did not buy the pineapple. Returned it to its fruit counter spot before checking out.

Dinner alone last night. Just me and the newspapers. The bar at Conch Republic. Enjoyed stone crabs. Knew no one. All tourists. Bar half full.

John Glenn passed away yesterday. At age 95. An American hero. No question.

Flew 149 combat missions in World War II and the Korean War. The first American astronaut to orbit the Earth. 1992. Later, a United States Senator. He was the last of the original Mercury 7 Astronauts living.

The most telling feature…..He and his wife were married 70 years at the time of his death.

Tonight, I eat exceptionally well. Donna is cooking. I am having dinner with Donna and Terri.

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!