SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF ITALY

I attended the monthly meeting of the Sons and Daughters of Italy last night at the Bottle Cap. Always enjoyable. Good food, good people. Interesting conversations.

Giorgi sponsored me in the club. He was elected President last night.

I sat with Paul, Sharon and Donna.

A new member and first timer was a woman whose name I cannot recall. Sorry. She recently arrived from Italy. Her family has been in the gelato business for years. Like three generations. In Italy. A store recently opened in Key West.

A daughter in Key West. She is managing the store for her father.

The family was not happy with the machinery used to make gelato which was available in the U.S. She brought family machinery with her.

The new store is called Gelateria Nuovolfiore Key West. Address 407 e Front Street.

She brought samples for us to enjoy. All terrific!

I have been dieting three weeks. Cheated last night. Big time. Ate everything. Did not feel guilty at all.

Edward Toppino is a Key West icon. A giant. Today around 90 years old. He is a member.

His father built US 1. For real. Ed got into the business. Today his sons and grandsons. Ed a neighbor. Lives around the corner from me.

Ed told us about the 1935 hurricane and its impact on US 1. The hurricane was a 5 and one of the worst to hit the lower keys. Certain railroad bridges down or broke. The road in bad shape. If my memory is correct, over 400 dead.

Ed spoke about some of the railroad bridges resupported and used for the highway. The difficulties in building the highway at that point.

One of the problems was where to live. Tents used prior to the hurricane. Ed’s father built a motel in Marathon to house his family and some of his employees.

The railroad, Flagler Railroad, died with the hurricane. Flagler’s dream no more. The motel in Marathon still stands.

Stopped at the Chart Room afterwards. John off. A new female bartender. She said she would be working four nights.

Friend Ken at the bar. He is in and out of Key West. Leaves tomorrow. Will return in a month.

Met Mark and Jim. From outside Flint, Michigan. Interesting conversation.

Spent the afternoon listening to Trump and Tillerson. I fear they are leading us into a war.

Bocce tonight, depending on the weather. Has been pouring big time all morning. May clear up. If it does soon, the courts will dry by bocce time.

Conch Republic Days begin friday. Seven at Schooner Wharf Bar. A short exciting parade. Lively costumes. Shell Blowing Contest.

The famed commentator now dead Charles Kuralt was a frequent visitor to Key West. Schooner Wharf was his favorite place. He referred to it as the “…..center of the universe.”

Sarin gas has been in the news since Assad bombed his people with it. Sean Spicer got sarin gas and Hitler screwed up two days ago. The news has been following his mea culpas.

No one has mentioned that Hitler was in fact involved with sarin gas. The Nazis developed it. Then stockpiled it. Hitler refused to use it against the Allies.

The gas used in the death chambers was not sarin.

I spoke of Attorney General Jeffrey Beauregard Sessions and his Civil War Confederate namesake General P. C. T. Beauregard yesterday.

A follow up re the General.

The General bombarded Fort Sumter for 33 hours. The Union force was not prepared for the battle. Little ammunition, cannons, food, etc. The Union surrendered.

Turns out Beauregard was a gentleman. He did not take the Union forces and contractors working on the fort prisoner. He permitted them to leave and march north.

There were 118 military and 43 construction workers. Not one had sustained an injury during the fight. The South lost a dog during the battle. Plus one soldier who was killed by an accidental explosion after the battle.

Robot, robots, robots! They are everywhere! Moving in on everything we do.

Today, chess. An expert chess team played two robots. The robots won most of the matches.

Enjoy your day!

 

MEMORIAL DAY 2016

Memorial Day. A day of remembrance. A time to recall those who paid the ultimate price for their country. They died.

What concerns me is that man will always have a Memorial Day. It is man’s nature to make war. To kill one another.

World War I was to be the last major war ever. World War II was the war to end all wars. Nevertheless, wars have been ongoing.

My yesterday was divided between two major events. Writing this week’s KONK Life column and spending time at Schooner Wharf watching the Minimal Regatta.

Yesterday morning, my mind was a blank as to what to write about. I had several thoughts. None came together for me.

I was doing my morning Facebook routine. There was a posting by Joseph Lyles. A friend. A good man in every respect. He posted a several line column of statistics. All had to do with the economy’s impact on various groups of people..

I used Joseph’s posting as the basis for my column. America Has Lost Its Promise. My observations were that the economy is what has made a Trump and Sanders successful. Further, if things did not change, America was headed for an Arab Spring.

Once the column was done, I was off to Schooner Wharf. Minimal Regatta time. Yesterday, the 25th Annual Minimal Regatta.

Participants construct their boats. Construction  items limited to plywood fasteners, duct tape, and 2′ x 4’s. Nothing else. Most boats do not complete the race. They fall apart.

Presidential politics found its way into the Regatta. Trump and Clinton participated. Look alike copies.

Stepin Fetchil was born in Key West this day in 1902. I have written about him several times over the years. Though not generally recalled in Key West, he attained national fame.

Stepin was born of Indian parents. His birth name Lincoln Theodore Monroe Andew Perry. Nothing appears re his Key West years. He lived in Key West only 8 years. His parents moved the family thereafter to Tampa. Stephin never returned.

Stephin’s claim to fame. He was an Afro-American comedian and actor. Most famous during the 1930s. The first Afro-American movie actor to become a millionaire.

This year many have say there should be a third party. One will be there on election day. The Libertine Party. Not new. Has been around for years. However, this year putting forth quality candidates at a time America is crying out for a third party.

The Presidential candidate is former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson. The Vice-Presidential candidate former Massachusetts Governor William Weld.

Johnson is a fiscal conservative and a social liberal.

The team will not win. However, they will make noise. Hopefully enough to qualify the Libertine Party for the Presidential debates.

In  recent months, I have written and spoken on my blog talk radio show of the new close relationship between Saudi Arabia and Israel. One example being the King of Saudi Arabia giving Netanyahu $80 million for his campaign last year.

It has been announced Saudi Arabia is going to build a gigantic embassy in Israel. In Tel Aviv.

I find this surprising. The two countries have not had formal diplomatic relations since the late 1940s. They still do not. In addition, Saudi Arabia has been in the forefront to annihilate all Jews in Israel and to destroy in every respect the nation of Israel.

Strange bedfellow

Joan of Arc was burned at the stake this date in 1431. In English controlled Normandy. Her judges, Church authorities. Her crime, heresy. She followed God’s words as spoken to her rather than the rulings of the Church.

An interesting point seldom mentioned. Not one witness spoke in support of any of the charges. The Court wanted to find her guilty and did. Ecclesiastical due process 1431.

Enjoy your day!