AN AMERICAN HERO FORGOTTEN BY HISTORY

Two men with Armistice Day stories to be told. Two men who exhibited love and respect for their country in different ways.

World War I ended on the 11th day of the 11th month at 11 am in 1918. The Armistice has been signed at 5 in the morning, scheduled to go into effect at 11 that same morning.

Henry Nicholas Gunther was born in 1895 of German immigrant parents. In Baltimore. Raised and schooled there.

He became a member of the 313th Infantry Regiment. Known as Baltimore’s Own. He arrived in France in July 1918.

Gunther was involved in fighting in the Argonne on November 11. Front line. Just before 11 am, Gunter’s group was confronted by a German road block which contained a machine gun. His sergeant ordered Gunther to fix his bayonet and charge the Germans.

Gunther did as ordered. As he charged, there was a burst of machine gun fire. Gunther was killed. He died at 10:59 am.

The Americans were unaware of the truce. The Germans were. They kept shouting at Gunther that the war was over. Gunther apparently did not understand and kept coming. They shot him.

Gunther was 23 at the time. He was the last American to be killed in World War I.

General Pershing recognized Gunther at an Armistice ceremony the next day. He referred to Gunther as an American hero.

Today, Gunther is an American hero forgotten by history.

One hundred years later to the day, it was Armistice Day again. November 11, 2018. The free world commemorated the occasion in Paris. The heads of the world’s free nations in attendance.

Trump was there. In his room at the American Embassy at a very special moment.

There was a ceremony at an American cemetery. Aisne Marine American Cemetery. Fifty miles outside Paris. The final resting place of American soldiers who died at the Battle of Belleau Wood.

Trump failed to honor his country’s war dead. He did not attend. It was raining. He was the only world leader who failed to attend.

A tale of two men. One a hero. The other, I am not sure how to label.

Hemingway personally experienced war as an ambulance driver and war correspondent. He did not like war. I question how he would have addressed heroism. Whatever, he did write, “In modern war…..you will die like a dog for no good reason.”

Busy day yesterday.

My cell phone was screwed up. A simple problem I could not resolve. I am not mechanically inclined in any fashion.

Hurried over to Verizon in the Win-Dixie Shopping Center. They set me straight in seconds.

Then picked up Robert and Ally. No school because of the holiday. Robert now a freshman in high school and Ally in the eighth grade.

Both adults.

We went to Sandy’s Cafe. They’re choice. A favorite of theirs, also.

They shared with me their present day experiences.

Robert loves high school. He received an award as the outstanding freshman student of the quarter. Based on grades, activities, etc. He continues to practice almost daily his tennis. A star in making. No question he will be on the varsity team when they begin play in January. He went to a dance. With a group. Talked to girls, did not dance.

Ally a typical eighth grader. Top year at her school. A big shot. She had straight A’s on her recent report card. She is developing into a beauty. Pure femininity. She is anxious to get to high school. Her brother’s comments make her so. She knows there is another world awaiting her there.

I noticed yesterday morning a bulge on one side of my neck. Vertical. About 5 inches log. Protruding out of the side of my neck.

Panic set in. My carotid artery. I was on my way to a stroke.

Was in Dr. Ivor’s office at 3 to see nurse Susan Neill. She and McIvor have been caring for my heart for 12 years. She checked me out. Not carotid. Ran some tests. Found nothing wrong. Perhaps my weight loss had caused some muscle or blood vessel to protrude.

I felt better. Still concerned, however. I am a hypochondriac. Told her I was seeing my primary Dr. Norris wednesday for some blood results. I would see what he had to say.

Susan and I have become friends over the years. I learned yesterday was her first day at work in 8 weeks. She was wearing a big boot on one foot.

She was not a happy camper.

She was at St. Mary’s Church. Placing some flowers on the altar. As she turned to step down, she went down. Fractured some important bone in her ankle/foot. Now has screws, pins, and gross discomfort.

I hurt for her.

It was 4 in the afternoon. Too early to go home. Too early to really go out. Had a choice to make. Went out. To Blue Macaw. A couple of drinks, a light dinner and some good company.

Everyone with physical problems. Doug, who is a tour guide at the Hemingway House, is in intensive care. His heart. His co-worker Alisia told me.

Paul and Ron came in. Paul told me he is experiencing the same throat problems I complained about 6 months ago. He is undergoing a procedure friday to correct it.

What a world! What a life! It’s called getting old!

I was home by 8:30. Went to bed. Fell asleep almost immediately. Woke at midnight and could not sleep the rest of the night.

Doug Bennett writes an interesting blog…..This Week On The Island. A series of events marked with photos.

His opening and closing verbiage paragraphs always read the same. Part of the introductory paragraph: “Everything is true except for those parts that are lies.”

The last paragraph: “Key West, Close to Perfect, Far from Normal.”

I especially like his last statement.

Today, tuesday. My podcast show tonight. Nine my time. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

Join me. I rant and rave about whatever moves me at the moment. A fast moving half hour. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

TONIGHT…..TOGA

My favorite evening of Fantasy Fest is thursday. Toga night!

The voyeur in me comes out.

Before describing the gritty details, a brief toga history.

The toga is a garment of ancient Rome. White cloth. Drapped over the shoulders and around the body.

The toga and Rome cover many years. Modes of dress changed. What is set forth is generally what was the case.

Initially, the toga was worn with no undergarments. Romans were frugal. Then a garment underneath became the style. The tunic.

The toga was formal wear for men. Like wearing a suit today. The ladies initially wore togas, also. As time went on, they moved from the toga to a long Greek type gown. Except for prostitutes. Prostitutes wore togas at all times.

To today.

Thursday night during Fantasy fest is toga time!

Many will attire themselves in togas. More females than males. Many of the ladies wear nothing beneath the togas.

The event takes place in Sloppy Joe’s and outside on the street in front of Sloppy’s. The crowd overwhelming. Spectators/voyeurs and toga wearers.

A game is played. Generally on the street. A lady will be encircled by a group of men. Beads come into play. The men will want the lady to show her breasts. She will negotiate for beads. When an acceptable number has been arrived at, she will lower her toga and exhibit her breasts.

The negotiation then moves to her genital area. The bead cost higher. The negotiation concluded, the lady will lift her toga and show everyone the down under.

Next, the derriere. The butt brings the most beads. Very heavy negotiations. An acceptable number arrived at, the lady lifts her toga and exhibits her butt.

The exhibitions are not swift. The men get their beads’ worth. The ladies thrilled to show all.

Ten to fifteen of these negotiations are ongoing simultaneously for hours.

Note, women of all ages involved.

As mentioned yesterday, sex is absolutely prohibited during Fantasy Fest. There seems to be an exception. At 3-4 in the morning, the togas come off and the sexes engage. I only know this from word of mouth and photos. I could never stay up that late, even for sex.

My yesterday began with lunch at Sandy’s Cafe. Followed by a manicure at 1 with Tammy.

Initially, I was Tammy’s only customer. I asked, “All this overhead for me?”

Stopped at Walgreens on the way home. Finally got my flu shot.

Last night, Blue Macaw for 2 hours. I wanted to get out. I have been staying in evenings trying to finish a book I seem to have been writing forever.

Terri was singing. Donna with her, of course. Chatted a while with Doug. Tuesday was tutu night. Male and females so attired all over town. Doug had been out and about. Wore a kilt in place of a tutu. Preserved his masculinity. Correctly wore nothing under the kilt. Said he spent the evening mooning everyone.

Lynda and Bob Frechette came in. First time at Blue Macaw. I sat with them a while. Two of the best people in Key West. Involved, well known, loved.

Two drinks and I was on my way home. It was only 8 o’clock.

Now for a most important and disturbing item. The bombs discovered yesterday. Unquestionably, terrorism. National terrorism. I suspect one of our own out to hurt certain of his/her fellow citizens.

I believe without question the bombs the result of Trump’s violent rhetoric. His anger and hatred relentless. The damage attempted by the bombs an inevitable event. Trump’s words the motivation.

It has to stop. It will not as long as Trump continues his destructive ways. He will. He may have toned down a bit last night. He will not be able to keep his words down. Not his nature. In fact, I found his words last night more mocking than a direction to calm down, stop.

Next will come action in the streets. Not mere demonstrations. Clashes.

Actual revolution a possibility. I have been suggesting such might occur for a while.

Hard to believe. In the United States?

We continue to live in the Germany of the 1930’s. Everyone, beginning with Trump, put the brakes on!

Enjoy your day!

 

REPUDIATE OR VALIDATE

Sixteen days to elections. The midterm perhaps the most important in U.S. history. In less than 2 years, Trump has taken us down a dark road. Evil at every turn.

Time to save the country. In the manner prescribed in the Constitution. The ballot. Vote!

Vote not as a Republican or Democrat. Vote as an American. To save our country.

The Republicanism Trump proclaims is not that your fathers knew. It is different. Tending to fascism and dictatorship.

Stand together. Republicans swallow your pride and vote for a Democratic Congress. Your vote must be cast to repudiate Trump. To vote Republican, is to validate him.

Trump has begun making immigration an up front issue again. A “caravan” of 4,000 has left Guatemala and Honduras and is on its way to the U.S. They are escaping death.

Trump says he will send the U.S. Army to the border to stop them. He also continues to believe separating children from parents will eventually put a damper on immigration efforts.

Does Trump ever wonder why people would walk 2,000 miles to reach the U.S.? Things must be extremely bad for them to undertake such a trip.

What happened to…..”Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free?”

My mother and my four grandparents came from Italy. All poor. Peasant stock. “The wretched refuse of your teeming shores.” They yearned for the better life. For themselves and their children born and to be born. “Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

The 4,000 walking the 2,000 miles to our southern border a humanitarian crisis. Our borders should be open and not closed to them. The U.S. once took in masses in greater numbers from Ireland and Italy. They should do the same today for those soon to be knocking on our door.

One of Trump’s quirks is name calling. He finds a name for anyone he dislikes or disagrees with. I thought the names flowed freely from his demented mind. Turns out they are crafted and planned.

It has been reported Horseface for Stormy Daniels was practiced in the White House by Trump. He went around asking people what they thought.

Apparently as President he had nothing better to do at the time.

Then there is Jamal Khashoggi. First, the Saudis cut off his fingers. Then decapitated him. Concluded by using a chain saw to cut his body into parts.

Trump is not disgusted, not infuriated. More concerned with “friendship” of a country some consider an enemy and with money. The deplorable acts committed upon Khashoggi’s body cannot and should not be tolerated by any civilized person. Yet in his own fashion, Trump does.

I share these most recent examples of Trump actions to give further evidence of the road the U.S. is on. My friends one and all, vote Democratic next month. Repudiate Trump. Validate him not. Save our country in the process.

Yesterday, a full one. A haircut with Lori. Followed by lunch at Sandy’s Cafe. Last night, Hard Rock Cafe and Chart Room.

Donna and Terri had me as their guest at Hard Rock. Enjoyed a large rack of ribs and the good company of my lesbian wives.

Stopped by the Chart Room on the way home. Visited with the new bartender Tammy. So lovely! Soft spoken. Sweet.

The Chart Room is her second job. Her first, the Garden of Eden.

Ollie was at the bar. A while since we last had run into each other.

Ollie’s full name is Oliver Kofoid. Why I share this with you, I am not sure. The name and the man do not fit.

Ollie is friendly and witty. A good guy. Community oriented. A citizen and scientist.

Ollie began his early life by getting kicked out of high school. Never returned. Eventually was able to get into a college. Earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Environmental Science.

Today in his 50’s, Ollie has worked at the Key West Water Treatment Plant more than 20 years. The operator of the plant is OMI which is part of Jacobs Engineering. Ollie is a Lead Operator. A position of some importance.

He was dressed in his Coast Guard Blues last night. Ollie is an officer in the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary. Two rows of ribbons on his chest.

He has refereed soccer and served as a lacrosse official for Key West schools for years. He is President of his condo association. Ran twice for a seat on the Mosquito Control Board. Lost both times. Why I do not understand.

Ollie dislikes mosquitoes. Seriously. Considers them a plague.

Ollie has a strange sense of humor. He deals with sewage. He once had tee shirts made and gave them out to his friends. Inscribed thereon: “Input From Every Asshole In Town.”

Irma did a number on the wastewater treatment plant Ollie is responsible for. He and several others recently accepted on behalf of their company an award for their performance during the hurricane.

The generator had failed. Ollie and his team effected emergency repairs and kept things running. Critical wastewater and storm water services as a result continued till a new generator arrived. Property and the environment were protected big time because of their efforts.

The National Water Environmental Federation recently gave the Key West Wastewater Treatment Operators its highest award: The Water Heroes Award for going ABOVE & BEYOND.

Lynda and Bob Frechette are back in town. Welcome! You were missed!

Tonight, Goombay. I meet Jean Thornton at 7 at Bourbon Street to begin what I know will be a festive evening.

Enjoy your day!

 

A MATCH HAS A HEAD BUT NO BRAIN

I have found something strange re the news the past couple of weeks. Perhaps you have also.

Close to all of the news concerns the U.S. Kavanaugh primarily.

There are things going on elsewhere in the world. We do not hear. We are buried in the Kavanaugh issue.

Not healthy. World events in the final analysis are equally if not more important over the long run than Kavanaugh.

Fire Prevention Week begins in a few days. October 7-October 13.

In 1948, a fire prevention week existed also. I was in the eighth grade. There was a contest. We had to write a composition about fire prevention. The writer of the best composition would get to read it while standing on a fire truck in front of the school. A big deal!

Mine was the best. Thirteen year old Louis got the thrill of a lifetime. Stood on the fire truck, read the composition, and then blew the fire truck horn repeatedly. The last part the best.

I was a reader early in life. Sat in an easy chair in the living room reading something too heavy for me. A large dictionary at my side so I could look up the many words I did not understand.

Somewhere along the way, I came up with a phrase that stuck in my head while writing the composition: A match has a head, but no brain. Brilliant! I incorporated it into my composition. It became the thrust of the writing and probably caused me to win.

At the time, I thought it had to do with fires. I looked it up this morning. It did not. Concerns stress and anger prevention.

Oh well, it worked at the time!

I further discovered this morning that I was sort of correct. Sort of being the operative words. I came across one comment re the match and no brain in a fire prevention ad put out by a Firemen’s Association. One out of hundreds!

Disposable lighters are in vogue today. Matchbooks a rarity. In 1948, matchbooks were used. A practical lighter did not arrive on the scene till 1972. Gillette bought a French patent.

Matchbooks were used for cigarette lighting, birthday cakes, etc. Matchbooks were a small paper board folder carrying 30 matches. Rip a match off and strike the head on a small pad on the outside of the matchbook.

That scenario was why I was able to use a match has a head but no brain. Everyone used matches! Everyone understood!

A pleasant evening last night at Blue Macaw with Andrea and Joe. Good people. I keep repeating myself. However, they are.

Afterwards, I stopped at Sandy’s Cafe for something to eat before returning home.

I have reported re the mosquito danger in North Carolina. Terrible! Mosquitoes three times normal size. Millions more than normal being bred.

North Carolina’s Governor recognizes the danger. Yesterday, he authorized $4 million to attack the problem. Probably more will be required in time.

One of Florida’s greatest benefactors was Henry Flagler. The railroad, St. Augustine, Palm Beach, West Palm Beach, Miami, and Key West.

Two interesting things about the man. He never graduated from high school. He also actually created Miami. From nothing to something. People were thrilled. They wanted to name the city Flagler. He said, no. There was a river in the area. The Miami River. The city Flagler created was named after the river.

Tuesday night I was supposed to watch Ally play volleyball. She is on the school team. Never saw her play before. To my sorrow, the game was cancelled at the last minute.

One of my TV’s has been down for 2 days. Repair man due this afternoon. Comcast is wonderful!

Tonight, I don’t know. Probably the Chart Room. Several days since my last visit. Time to visit with John again.

Enjoy your day!

EARLY KEY WEST SPEAKEASIES

 

Brad Bertelli is curator of the Keys History and Discovery Center. He wrote an interesting article re prohibition and Key West speakeasies in the Key West Weekly 9/27/18.

It was 1928. Prohibition was upon the U.S. Bootleggers were running booze in from larger boats sitting beyond U.S. territorial limits. Some of the illicit alcohol passed through Key West on its way to other parts of the country. Some remained in Key West.

A new type drinking establishment arose. The speakeasy.

Key West had 2 speakeasies early on. Club Florence and the Blind Pig.

Club Florence was located at 1117 Duval St. Today, the Speakeasy Inn. Owner Raul Vasquez named the place Florence because a number of his customers had wives named Florence.

The Blind Pig operated at 428 Greene St. Today, the infamous Captain Tony’s.

The structure was built in 1851. Over the years, served as an ice house and city morgue, wireless telegraph station, cigar factory, and bordello.

The building was owned by Isaac Wolkowsky. David Wolkowsky’s father.

Issac rented the building to Joe Russell during Prohibition for $3 a week. When Prohibition ended, Russell changed the name to Sloppy Joe’s. He would later move the bar to its present location.

Dueling Bartenders first last night. The wonderful Terri Smith guest performer. Joining regulars Tom Luna and Rick Dery. A good crowd. Donna, Andrea and Joe, John and Fiona, the wonderful Liz, Josefina, and Mary among others.

Stopped at Sandy’s Cafe on the way home for a bite. My usual. Cuban cheese toast with tomato and a diet coke. Love the meal! Think it is the cost. $4.39. Can’t beat it.

Shades of Tom Cruise and Ancient Japan last week in Key West. Samurai!

A homeless man threatened 2 different persons early friday morning. With a samurai sword. Ended up being arrested.

I am excited. Tonight, I watch Ally play volley ball for the first time. She is on the Montessori team.

Afterwards, I have to hurry home. My podcast at 9. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Interesting. An eye opener on occasion. Join me for a half hour. Listen to me rant and rave. Guaranteed you will not be disappointed. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

On this day in 1950, Tennessee Williams purchased what was to be his home for some 30 yeas on Duncan St. Only $13,000 back then.

The home remains lovely. Present owners keep it in tip top shape.

Lisa and family live 1 1/2 blocks down the street on Duncan.

One of the most thriving and happiest Key West businesses is on Union just below White. Dairy Queen. On this day in 1951, the Zoning Board approved a zoning change so the Dairy Queen could be built.

For over 60 years, Dairy Queen has successfully operated in the same place. Primarily patronized by locals. School kids and families. Many the time Lisa, Robert, Ally and I would stop and enjoy. Sometimes Louis alone with the grandkids. Small tables outside to sit on. One of the few Key West businesses with more than adequate parking.

We wait for the FBI report. Now expanded. Going to be interesting.

I suspect another governmental investigation is ongoing at the same time. One by the Judicial Conference of the United States. Composed of Federal Judges. Oversees the operation of Federal Courts.

The Judicial Conference at the moment would be operating in secrecy. It has the power to recommend impeachment among other things for criminal malfeasance. It can initiate its investigation on its own based merely on media reports.

Does Kavanaugh qualify for such an investigation? I think so. However, I am not a member of the Judicial Conference.

Got to give the Devil his do. I refer to Trump.

NAFTA was replaced by USMCA yesterday. A better trade agreement.

Trump delivered.

Enjoy your day!

BATTLE OF THE COOKS

Donna and Andrea are excellent cooks. Preparation and service outstanding. Tonight, a cook off. At Andrea’s. The two working together to put out a small dinner party meal.

I can’t wait to sit down and enjoy.

Their culinary efforts impressive. I designated them the Julia Childs of Key West.

Yesterday, busy.

First, a haircut with Lori. A runner. She has decided to do the 26 mile marathon in December in Palm beach. Her second run that long.

Then lunch a few doors down at Sandy’s Cafe. I began experiencing pain each time I bit into my Cuban cheese toast with tomato. Hurt! Something wrong.

Left and hurried to my dentist Dr. George Lindner. Not there. He had taken the afternoon off. His associate and 2 dental hygienists began working on me.

I have implants. Supposedly never have pain again. Any problems, mechanical. This one not mechanical. I had thoughts of a tumor. At my age even a common cold concerns me. I keep thinking…..Finally the big one!

Turns out to be a bullshit problem. I hope! Will not bore you with the details. Will take a couple of weeks to clear up.

Last night began with the Chart Room. John in Jamaica. Mary who normally works the Beach Bar filling in.

The place quiet. Key West quiet. It is September.

One drink and some friendly chatter with Mary.

I was walking in the Pier House parking lot when I saw at the other end Mary. Another Mary. The one I normally run into at Blue Macaw, the one who works at The Little White House. Dressed magnificently. A bright white/reddish long dress.

And a man! Seemed like they were heading to A&B or the Boathouse for dinner.

Blue Macaw half filled. That September thing again.

Met Tom. Last night was the third evening in a row I ran into him at Blue Macaw. A good looking young guy. Just arrived in Key West. Originally from Philadelphia. Bartending at Hogsbreath and Conch Republic.

Looked down the bar and there was Terri. Brought her to my end of the bar to sit. Introduced her to Tom. She knew others sitting around. Terri was waiting for Donna who was at a business meeting.

Got to admire Terri! Her apartment 500 feet away. A busy intersection to cross. She walked over alone.

Political writer Zach Taylor published an interesting Brett Kavanaugh piece 9/19. Titled: Brett Kavanaugh…..Poster Child For American Aristocracy.

He hits Kavanaugh’s special upbringing hard.

Georgetown Prep a high school for children of the elite. He references Kavanaugh as a test case for the bounds of elite domination. Going a step further, he describes conservatism as ” a system of elite domination, imposed at any cost.”

Kavanaugh’s nomination is described as “a referendum on elite aristocracy whose primary goal is the very existence and protection of conservative government.” He claims the group “live above democratic accountability, not constricted by words and deeds in the way mere citizens can be.”

As to Dr. Ford’s sexual assault allegation, if Kavanaugh were to survive and be sworn in as a Supreme Court Justice, it would “demonstrate one more dimension in which the American aristocracy is…..beyond the reach of the rabble.”

Other tidbits gleamed from the article included that Georgetown Prep and other nearby schools were part of an alcohol soaked party culture. Misogyny common place.

Trump’s previous appointment to the Supreme Court bench was Neil Gorsuch. Attended Georgetown Prep at the same time as Kavanaugh. Except Gorsuch was not the party boy Kavanaugh was.

So much happening in the world. Too much for the media. A story runs a very few days and then is gone for a while. Sometimes never to return.

I am zeroing in on Florence. Now gone. Damage done. Devastation exhibited. Little now reported re Florence.

Little reported at a time most important. How are Florence’s survivors/refugees being cared for. Shelter, food, water, power, ice, etc. Don’t tell me how many you have serviced. Tell me how many need to be serviced and what progress is being made.

I worry. Florence may be too big for the federal government to handle. Even Washington has limitations. Trump says don’t worry. You are going to be taken care of. We have the money.

I don’t buy it. The desire may exist. Capability another matter.

Time will tell.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

ORIGIN OF UNCLE SAM

The United States has a nickname. We all know it. Uncle Sam.

Where did it come from? How did it originate? Who is responsible for the nickname?

We have to go back to the War of 1812 for the answer.

Samuel Wilson was a Troy, N.Y. meat packer who supplied beef to the U.S. Army. Beef was transported in barrels.

On this day in 1813, Wilson began stamping the barrels with “U.S.” Purpose to inform everyone who was in contact with the barrels that the contents came from the United States.

Soldiers began referring to the beef they were eating as “Uncle Sam’s.”

A local newspaper picked up on the story. In due course, Uncle Sam gained widespread acceptance as the nick name for the U.S. federal government.

Recognition of Wilson’s contribution took a long time to acknowledge. However in September 1961, the U.S. Congress recognized Wilson as “the progenitor (father of) America’s symbol of Uncle Sam.”

My yesterday began with a haircut. Enjoy the time I spend with Lori. She has now been cutting my hair for 18 years. Looks as young today as she did back then.

Then to Sandy’s Cafe for lunch. I like the place. They know me and I know them. Always a friendly welcome. No need to order. They know I eat the same thing each time. Automatically bring it to me.

A car problem developing. Could be the battery. Not sure. Turns over slowly. Strange, however. If the car has been sitting for a half hour or more, it starts slowly. If sitting 5 minutes or so, starts normally.

Hopefully, I will find out today. Every time I returned to the car yesterday, I was not certain it would start. Not a welcome feeling.

The Chart Room first last night. John bartending. Steve and Cindy at the bar. Enjoyed their company.

Met Colin and Carli from Sarasota. Have been vacationing for a week. Staying at the Pier House. They married on Smathers Beach several years ago. Return to Key West often.

Colin originally from Northern England. They return there also to visit.

Both are employed by the same company, different departments. Computer soft ware programming.

Drove to Blue Macaw for a bite. Enjoyed ribs and a drink.

Ran into Donna, Terri, Joe and Andrea. Stayed a while. Stopped by Mary and Doug to share a few words.

Close to 10 when I left. Stopped at Publix on the way home. Desperately in need of food. Swiftly up and down the aisles to beat closing time. Good exercise.

Prior to the Senate Judiciary Committee confirmation hearing, I considered Judge Kavanaugh not to be the best of choices. Too far to the right. Rigid. Not fair.

I listened to him being questioned 2 days ago. I was very impressed. The man has one of the best legal minds I have been exposed to. Brilliant.

Such does not necessarily mean he would make a good Supreme Court Justice. The law is not black and white. It is gray. His legal genius would be able to twist things to his far right way of thinking and bring us back to the middle ages.

Ergo, an excellent legal thinker whose ideas are not in the best interests of most U.S. citizens.

I spelled this position out in my Key West Love Live video on Facebook yesterday.

Then, I watched parts of yesterday’s proceedings. Cause me to suspect the good Judge is a liar. A skillful one. Prone to avoid, I don’t recall, lie.

I now find him to be not only an improper candidate for the Supreme Court bench, but also the Circuit Court he sits on.

The Republicans have been playing games with records. It became obvious yesterday why. Kavanaugh has a track record. What he has written or done in the past does not always coincide with his testimony this week.

Two Democratic Senators need to be applauded. Both fought the Chair. Broke some Senate rules in so doing. The only way to out the truth, however.

New Jersey’s Senator Corey Booker and Hawaii’s Senator Mazie Hirono each being described as Spartacus. They were! At one point, Booker told the Chair if you want to bring me up on charges, go for it! The gauntlet was thrown.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

DOLLEY MADISON ALMOST CAPTURED BY BRITISH SAVING WHAT TURNED OUT TO BE A COPY OF WASHINGTON’S PORTRAIT

Dolley Madison became one of America’s most famous First Wives this day in 1814. The War of 1812 already 2 years old. The British close to taking Washington. President Madison had left to fight the approaching British Army.

He told Dolley to get out soon. She was getting some things together. The last object she decided to take was the portrait of George Washington. No way was she going to leave it to be defaced by the British.

Dolley lost time taking the portrait down. The frame was screwed to the wall. Finally, she cut the canvas out and rolled it up to be taken.

The British at the time a breath away. Dolley was able to escape, however.

The next night, the British dined in the White House using the White House’s silver and china. Then, they burned the White House down.

Dolley forever remembered for her bravery in saving Washington’s portrait.

It was only later that discovered that the portrait was not the original by Gilbert Stuart. It was merely a copy.

Made no difference. Dolley had made her mark in history.

A unique experience last night. Dinner at La Trattoria with Mary. A new friend.

Mary had invited me to dinner. Told me at the time she would be paying. I said, no. She said, yes. A generational thing. Mary is younger than me generation wise. My generation, the man always pays. Hers, it makes no difference.

She wanted to make the point. I let her. Enjoyed her company and a good meal.

Cheated. Not with Mary. With the meal. I celebrated my hitting 200 pounds. Ordered lasagna. Gained a pound. Worth it.

Mary and I then headed to Blue Macaw for a drink. I was tired. It was past 9. Mary still alive and raring to go. I begged off and left her. No problem. She understood. A generational thing.

The bartender at La Trattoria an old acquaintance. She was the one who came around the bar and gave me the Heimlich the night I was choking. Bonded forever.

Today, a haircut at noon with Lori. Then a walk of about 50 feet to Sandy’s Cafe for lunch.

Tonight, the Chart Room. Several nights since I have been there.

The weatherman at it again. Predicts thunder storms tonight. Describes it as “light up the night.” Correct. Dogs and humans will be startled. Lightening at the ocean comes right through the blinds. Lights up the room!

My man in Europe. Paul Harding. On a three week vacation with his partner Ron. Harding has been advising me on European public urinals.

He was in Amsterdam yesterday. Outdoor public urinals commonplace. Normally constructed because men pee in the streets. I still cannot understand such activity.

In any event, Amsterdam built the public urinals to save lives, not to kill bad odor. Turns out in the 3 years prior to the public urinals being constructed, 51 men died in Amsterdam canals. They fell in the water while peeing and drowned.

One of the jurors in the Manafort trial has spoken out. Paula Duncan. She said re the 10 charges that resulted in a hung jury, there was only one hold out. Eleven were for guilty.

Manafort should swiftly move his ass to Mueller and cooperate. He has yet another trial. He will never get out of jail otherwise.

Juror Duncan an interesting person. A Trump supporter. Did not affect her judgment. Plans on voting for him again in 2020. Wears a red MAGA hat. It was in the back seat of her car while she was playing juror.

Duncan advised the deliberations were heated and emotional on occasion. Tears shed by some.

Saudi Arabia is seeking the death penalty for a woman activist. Her name Israa al-Ghomgham. Everything secretive. She may already be on trial before a terrorist court.

One of the charges involves violent behavior. She demonstrated for the right of women to drive, the cessation by the Sunnis of preventing the free practice of religion, and more opportunity for work and education for women.

Israa a Shiite Muslim activist. Religion plays into this also.

Trump a good friend of the Saudis. He should intervene on Israa’s behalf. He won’t. He was quick to say the U.S. would invade Venezuela. In the past 24 hours, he has denounced the black government of South Africa. A female life not as important as oil and racism.

Pete Rose. One of baseball’s greats. He was banned from baseball this day in 1989 for life for betting on baseball. Never bet on his team to lose, only to win.

It has now been 29 years. We are a forgiving people. Time for the ban to be lifted. Rose belongs in the Hall of Fame! Lets do it before he dies.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

BOB…..M & M’s THE KEY TO GOVERNMENT CONTROL

BOB’s back! Last chapter. Titled: Not A Shot Fired.

BOB’s concern back in 1997 the same as the concern of many today. Government has to change. People deserve better.

The question is how to accomplish it.

Violence not the way. BOB’s suggestion “diversion.” Whatever that means. Will take a bit to analyze the concept.

Voting the key. However, candidates must be controlled. They must obey the will of whoever. Not sure yet what whoever is. Additional analysis required.

BOB says forget a third party candidate. Never works. BOB says of third party candidates, “Nothing more than a fart in the wind.”

BOB asked Bob Smith what he thought. Deep thinking Bob said, “M & M’s.”

“Chocolate candy?” BOB exclaimed. “Have you totally lost it? You’re to take over the entire government with chocolate candy?”

Bob responded, “Calm yourself. It’s the money and the media stupid.”

That is how far we go today. It will take several more writings to tie M & M’s, money and the media together. Plus some other Bob Smith sage thoughts.

Understand as we go through the last chapter that Bob considered government officials assholes.

Yesterday, a lazy sunday for me. Did nothing. Watched some golf and old Judy Garland movies.

Went out about 6. To the Rum Bar. Lauri bartending. George and Art, Ingrid, and a former Syracuse law professor and his wife who worked administration at Syracuse. They left and Donna and Terri came in. Donna and Terri had earlier been to 801. Terri sang karaoke.

We had a drink together. Terri in good spirits. She reminded me to pick her up at 1 today to take her to the eye Doctor.

The ladies wanted to have dinner. I was not that hungry. They were. I opted out. Told them I was going to stop at Sandy’s Cafe on the way home for a Cuban sandwich. They went I don’t know where.

Terri e-mailed me very late last night. She had just left the hospital. They were getting ready for bed at 10:30 when Terri complained of chest and back pain. She wanted to be taken to the hospital.

Terri had a heart attack 3 years ago. Prior to the onset of her cancer problems.

Donna reports no heart attack. Kept Teri overnight for precautionary reasons. Terri was resting well when Donna left.

I am waiting for Donna’s morning hospital report.

Tonight, Dueling Bartenders at Aqua. My two Virginia lovelies that I met last week e-mailed and said they would see me there tonight.

Gillian and Rozalyn. I cannot wait to hear the exploits of their Key West week. The girls intended to raise hell. Gillian was anxious to go topless at Garden of Eden.

Giuliani kept saying on Meet the Press yesterday that “truth isn’t truth.” I read somewhere this morning that after Trump was jailed, Giuliani could visit him and say to Trump “prison isn’t prison.”

Note, I do not expect Trump to go to prison. Impeached, yes. Jailed, no.

We don’t send former Presidents to prison. Though Trump keeps suggesting his Presidential opponent Hillary Clinton should be jailed.

Entitlement to rights can be taken a step too far. Not every one claiming rights is entitled to them. I refer specifically to prisoners. People in jail.

They are somehow organized and on the move. A Nationwide Prison Strike is scheduled to begin August 21 and end September 9. Seventeen prisons involved.

The prisoners consider themselves slaves. For example, they work for next to no wages. On August 21, 1831, Nat Turner led an uprising of slaves. Ergo, the August 21 starting date.

September 9 has significance in prison history. September 9 will be the 47th anniversary of the Attica prison rebellion.

During the strike, the prisoners will refuse to perform any type labor, they will engage in sit-ins and hunger strikes, and demand major reforms.

Ten demands. Included being paid the prevailing wage in their State or territory.

Prison type slavery, being required to work for nothing or next to nothing, is part of the 13th Amendment. The Amendment allows for “slavery or involuntary servitude…..as a punishment for crimes whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.”

Other demands include access to rehabilitation programs and an end to “death by incarceration.” Death by incarceration a life sentence without possibility of parole.

The prisoners wish to be “valued.”

Enjoy your day!