TOGA PARTY…..WHAT TOGA PARTY?

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

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

The reasons why two-fold from my perspective.

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

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

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

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

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

I saw no more than 10 persons in toga attire.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Proud parents of two children and two grandchildren.

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

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

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

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

Shame on us all!

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

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

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

Enjoy your day!

TOGA PARTY…..TOGA, TOGA, TOGA

 

I have been recommending the best Fantasy Fest events to attend the past few evenings. Several each night.

Tonight, only one. Toga Party!

Forget everything else. The place to be is Sloppy Joe’s. Inside or on the street. Actually, the street more fun till about 3 in the morning. Then go inside for the action.

Men and women clad in white togas. Magnificent attire, especially for women. It will be show me your…..For how many beads? Constant negotiation. The lady always wins. The men happy to pay.

The event, a voyeur’s dream!

My first stop last night was the Chart Room. Sat at the end of the bar in the corner. A few minutes later, a lovely young lady asked if the empty seat next to me was taken. I looked over and said no. Thought I would die!

She was wearing next to nothing. A thong. Bare breasted. Absolutely magnificent breasts.

All I could think was…..Thank you God!

We chatted. She was up and around and then back to the seat again. Talking with everyone.

She was part of a pair. Al and Ann from somewhere outside Detroit. Al an orthopedist.

They have been doing Fantasy Fest for 10 years. Stay generally at the Pier House. The same accommodation each year. More pricey than a normal room.

Al an interesting guy. We chatted a bit. Clothed differently than Ann. Al was wearing a bathing suit and cowboy hat.

At some point, another Fantasy Fest woman arrived. Her breasts spray painted.

The bar was crowded. Most persons costumed up. At one point, I could hear a discussion about men’s nipples. Did not pay attention. The subject of no interest to me.

John bartending. Early 40’s. His second year in Key West. He is enjoying the week!

He went to Kelly’s Kinky Party monday night. The same one I mentioned that I did with my lesbian wives 15 years ago. The nipple twisting story.

John and his date properly attired. Attired perhaps not the correct word. The fewer clothes the better. A black strap here and there sufficient.

John said the event was everything he imagined it would be!

When I did the party 15 years ago, Kelly’s was the only BD/SM party in town. Today at least one an evening during Fantasy Fest.

Decided to invade the Pier House restaurant. Pier One. For stone crabs.

Magnificent! Without question! Go and enjoy. A mere $26 a pound. Sweet and succulent!

Met Livia. A lovely 26 year old bartender/waitress from Slovakia. She has a Masters from her home country. Useless she claims here. She is attending our local community college learning hospitality services.

I returned to the Chart Room. Kevin and Polly there. Kevin had arrived earlier in the day.

I chastised Polly re tattooed nipples on reconstructed breasts. I had told her and Ollie about a lady friend who was having it done. They thought I was crazy.

I researched Google later that night after arriving home. Nipples can be tattooed on. Three dimensional! Woman’s choice. Instead of a nipple, it can be a star, moon or sun. Whatever the woman wants.

Told Polly also my friend Cindy from Des Moines had written. She had a mastectomy. Opted for a nipple tattoo.

Nipples obviously were in vogue last night at the Chart Room. Female and male.

Saw my dermatologist Dr. Pruett in the afternoon. Cut a few things off. Froze others. A once a year visit as a person gets older.

Got my car back. Vinny the Ghost. Doors now open via the use of human hands. Most other things dependent on the electrical system still not working. Mechanic back ordered on the necessary part.

Shootout at OK Corral. The event occurred this day in 1881. Took all of 30 seconds. Estimated 30 shots fired during that time.

Wyatt Earp, his brothers and Doc Holliday.

A famous American happening. Many movies made based on it.

I have a sick and then sicker story to relate.

Recall the Dakota Access Pipeline last year. Sioux Indians protecting a burial ground. A standoff. Many non Indians standing with the Indians in opposition to the oil companies.

Several Congressmen have written to Attorney General Sessions recommending that he prosecute the Sioux and others as terrorists under the Patriot Act.

Understanding Sessions, he might very well go for it.

Trump wants to deport. He deports. Does not appear age nor circumstance matter.

Marie Rosa 10 years old. Here illegally. Her parents brought her across the border when she was three months old. Maria has cerebral palsy.

An ambulance in Texas was taking her from one hospital to another for surgery. Gall bladder. Stopped at a check point by ICE.

After some discussion, Maria was permitted to go forward and get the surgery. ICE followed and stayed with her.

Following the surgery, Maria was taken to a detention facility in San Antonio. Her parents are at home in Laredo, some 150 miles away. At some point over the years, the parents had become citizens. Not Maria, however.

ICE wants to deport Maria.

Where is the conscience of those involved? America not as unhappy with immigrants as the President thinks.

Media announced this morning the President will speak this afternoon. He will announce that opioids have become a national emergency and the government is going to deal with the problem.

Hero Trump!

Not really.

Opioids a national crisis. Sixty four thousand died last year. Averages 142 deaths a day. Normally such would be labeled a crisis. The crisis would be handled by the Secretary of Health and Human Services. That account has only $57,000 in it.

Instead of labeling it a crisis, Trump is calling it an emergency. This he believes permits him to use monies authorized for natural disasters. Such as hurricanes.

Hurricane monies drying up, however.

Monies for the opioid epidemic will have to be authorized by Congress. Another Trump slight of hand. He says I am going to do such and such and then tosses the ball to Congress to act. If Congress fails to authorize sufficient monies, he can always say I was for helping. It was Congress that failed.

The President never fails.

Some other interesting tidbits.

Melania is going to be involved in leading the fight somehow.

The problem primarily the responsibility of the Secretary of Health and Human Services. We do not have such a Secretary at the moment. Tom Price who was using private jets willy nilly resigned and has not been replaced.

We also require a Drug Czar. Trump nominated a Marino a couple of months ago. Marino had to withdraw when it was discovered he was close to the pharmaceutical houses. We still do not have a Drug Czar.

Typical Trump. Make a big deal out of something. Gets great media coverage. Then limbo for a plan.

The opioid problem is now. Requires now treatment, now attention. Actually, yesterday’s. What Trump will announce will take significantly more time to become operational because of funding, staffing and planning.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SUNDAY…..BRITISH OPEN AND LIZ

Another slow pleasant sunday.

My two biggies for the day were the British Open and Liz.

The British Open spectacular! Actually, Jordan Speith spectacular! He closed as only a winner and potential golf great could. A tough 13th hole. Lucky to have walked away with a bogey. Then 5 under the next four holes. Birdie, eagle, birdie, birdie. Included in the four holes were 50 and 30 foot putts.

Speith not yet 24. In a few days.

I felt sorry for Matt Kuchar. Came in second. Three strokes behind. Fifty years old. A 7 time pro winner. Age upon him. Might never be that close to a major win again.

Rushed over to Liz’s for lunch when the Open ended. Liz now home two weeks after five difficult weeks in the hospital. Her diabetes was out of control.

Liz was born a diabetic. Takes her shots and watches her food intake religiously. When out to dinner, she spends time studying the menu, asks questions of the waiter, etc.

Somehow there was a screw up. Whether she failed to take her medication or dieted incorrectly, no one knows. Whatever, almost killed her.

Liz is an outstanding cook. She did not cook yesterday. Not up to it yet. She did select the ingredients and direct their preparation, however. I enjoyed crab, shrimp and key lime pie. Two different sauces with the crab and shrimp.

We ate at a small table in the garden. a fan blowing upon us to ward off the humidity.

Liz always has help. A woman who resides with her. Liz refers to her as her assistant. Yesterday, the number was up to two. I noticed also a chair has been installed to take Liz up and down the stairs.

Liz is a good person. I enjoy her company. Dean of two law schools. Much in common to discuss. One thing stills bothers me about her. She voted for Trump. Still likes Trump. I do not understand.

Liz just turned 83. I, 82. We are contemporaries. I tell Liz I like older women.

Forgot to mention one thing in yesterday’s blog. On my busy Saturday night, I also stopped at Sloppy Joe’s to watch the finals of the Hemingway Look-Alike Contest.

Sloppy’s packed. I was able to push myself in about 20 feet. Stayed 15 minutes.

A fun event. Each contestant gives a speech why he should be selected. Prior winners judge. A lot of fun banter back and forth.

I left before it was over. Later learned Richard Filip of Fayetteville, Texas the winner. Probably been a candidate 10-15 years. Faithful participation for years required before a look-alike is seriously considered for the title.

Lobster mini season wednesday and thursday. For amateurs, not the commercial lobster fishermen. Their season begins August 6.

Fifty thousand persons will visit the Keys wednesday and thursday to dive for lobsters.

The local bank robber I mentioned a few days ago. We now know how he robbed the bank. Walked up to the cashier and said, “Give me all the bills. I know where you live.”

When arrested, he is reported to have said to the police he wanted to be returned to jail.

Sounds like he wanted to get caught.

If you are able, take a look at my Facebook live video of yesterday. Key West Lou Live. I spoke of my grandfather again. This time how Ellis Island gave him his last name: Petrone.

Enjoy your day!

 

PBS MEMORIAL DAY CONCERT…..INSPIRATIONAL

A lot to cover this morning.

The eve of every Memorial Day, PBS holds a concert on the lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Patriotic.

Last night’s was extremely emotional, as well as patriotic. I shed many a tear. We need more events like last night to remind us what our men and women are going through in Afghanistan and Iraq. What has and is happening to their minds, bodies and families.

The 30th Annual Minimal Regatta at Schooner Wharf yesterday afternoon. I missed it this year. However, this morning’s Key West Citizen carries many photos of the boats and participants.

The boats all looked fantastic. Evidencing the degree of work that went into preparing the vessels.

Only in Key West. Two women fighting because one could not give an orgasm to the other.

For real. Reported in this morning’s Crime Report. Two reunited female lovers staying at Margaritaville. Four in the afternoon. In their room. One of the women told the police her girl friend was inept at helping her to achieve an orgasm.

No arrests were made.

Sloppy Joe’s. On this day in 1937, Sloppy Joe’s celebrated its grand opening at Joe’s newly acquired bar on the corner of Duval and Greene Streets. Had to be a hell of a party! Can you imagine…..Hemingway one of the participants!

The Key West City Commission continues to have their heads up their asses! One of the worst bunch of civil servants I have seen in my lifetime.

Mel Fisher Museum is part and parcel of Key West. Funded originally by Mel Fisher himself after he struck gold. Now dependent on a small souvenir operation and donations.

The Museum applied for a zoning change so it could add some minimal fund raising activities. The City Commission unanimously voted no.

I do not understand. New construction and remodeling is being permitted all over Key West contrary to existing codes and laws. Yet the City Commission does not oppose. An outdoor amphitheater is under construction. Approved by the City Commission quickly and without sufficient analysis. A disaster in the making when finished.

Strangers/outsiders get more favorable attention from the Commission than locals.

I could go on ad infinitum.

These oracles of wisdom decided to blunt the Museum’s request. One that was no big deal in comparison to others approved by the Commission.

Remember Roy Schneider in Jaws when he said, “We’re going to need a bigger boat.” A similar situation confronted a 73 year old fisherman in Australia.

He was in a small boat. Very small. Without warning, a 9 foot 440 pound white shark jumped in the boat. Knocked the fisherman over. Caused injury to one arm. A lot of bleeding.

The fisherman was on his knees eye ball to eye ball with the shark. He scurried to the front of the boat. Not much room in the boat.

Modest, the fisherman described the event as “just a mundane thing.”

The fisherman survived. The shark died.

Merkel can be a pain in the ass. A tough woman. An even tougher political leader. Many the time I have disagreed with her. Not however with regard to her recent comments re Trump at the NATO meeting.

Merkel said yesterday that Europe is basically on its own. The U.S. cannot be depended upon. She said, Europe “must take our fate into our own hands.” Europe cannot rely on “others.”

The result of Trump continuing to suck up to our enemies and defecating on our friends. You do not turn your back on nations that have stood with us and we with them for more than 50 years. A relationship that has insured neither a European war nor world war during that time.

Evangelicals have become big Trump supporters. Lance Wallnau is an evangelist who is an author and preacher. He says he has some Jewish blood running in him from a long distant relative.

Wallnau compares Trump to King Cyrus. A leader found in the Biblical Book of Isaiah. Cyrus was in power during the 500s BC. He was supportive of Jews. A Moses, in effect. History claims he delivered the Jews. Questioned by some historians.

Wallnau refers to Trump as “King Cyrus under siege.” Also, as the “anointed one.”

Wallnau met with Trump last year. He claims he “heard from the Lord” while meeting with Trump.

He views Trump as “a wrecking ball to the spirit of political correctness.”

Wallnau is popular in evangelistic circles.

God help us!

Enjoy your day!

 

 

LT. ROBERT MAZZA

The closest friend in my adult life has died. Bob Mazza. A 32 year veteran of the Utica Police Department.

My sorrow runs deep.

Bob passed on at 82. He was one year older than me.

He was already a police officer several years when I returned to Utica to practice law. Somehow we met. He thought I lacked street smarts, needed help. He glued himself to me.

When not working, Bob was with me all the time. Always there for me. I was there all the time for him. We had bonded.

We traveled together. All over. He accompanied me whenever I traveled. Syracuse, Albany, Rochester, Buffalo, Saratoga, New York City, San Diego, Las Vegas, Miami, etc. We even did a week in Martinique.

He was there for my family, also. Always dependable.

Oh, the stories I could tell. Both amusing and serious. Not mentionable here, however.

Age and distance separated us. We last were together 10 years ago when he visited me for two weeks in Key West. I had moved to Key West. Bob, to Syracuse. We telephone chatted for a while. Less and less frequently. Now in reflection not for several years. Sad.

Bob appeared to be a tough guy. I use the words appeared to be. He was really a softy. He spent most of his police years as head of the Homicide and Burglary Squads. The bad guys feared him. Respected him. It was all in the image he portrayed.

When my time comes, I hope Bob is waiting for me at the Pearly Gates. There is no one I would rather spend Eternity with.

Another sad report.

Going live with Key West Lou will not debut today. While playing around with the site yesterday in preparation for today, I discovered two problems. Beyond my abilities to correct. Sloan not available till wednesday. So it looks like thursday or friday for the first show.

Sorry.

A disenchanted Key West Lou group, who nevertheless continue to follow me, will comment I never meet self-imposed deadlines, etc. The same people who criticize my positions, thoughts, etc.

I am a perfectionist. Always have been. Anal to a fault. Such is what made me a success as a lawyer. I cannot go public with the new snow unless and until I am satisfied.

Hang in there!

A weather forecaster I am not. However, I have learned the few times the wind has come from the south in Key West, a storm followed. Generally, a big one. Yesterday the wind was from the south. About 20 mph. Enough for the palm trees to bend. The sun shining.

I said a storm is coming. Checked the weather reports on the internet. Nothing. A beautiful sunny day. Twenty percent chance of rain. Which means no rain.

I wrote about the south wind in yesterday’s blog.

About 4 yesterday afternoon, TV was interrupted to advise a major storm moving up from the south. Tornadoes possible. The storm was going to run over the Florida Keys and Miami. Would hit around 1 in  the morning.

It hit at 11 last night. Howling winds and heavy rain. Winds still howling, though less. No tornadoes in Florida. However, tornadoes hit Georgia bad. Seventeen dead. Whole areas destroyed. Mississippi had problems also.

The south wind. Recognize it. Respect it.

I was sad last night. Bobby dead. Decided to have a few drinks and quietly recollect our times together.

First stop was the Chart Room. Chatted with Victor. Mentioned the south wind. He had read about it earlier in yesterday’s blog. He decided to telephone a neighbor while we were talking to go over to his house and close the outside blinds.

Then Sloppy Joe’s. Not a usual venue for me.

A few more drinks. Watched the country music entertainers.

Sloppy’s menu has changed. My fries covered in chopped beef, mozzarella and sauce no longer on the menu. I enjoyed an order of wings instead.

I continue to be reluctant to criticize Trump. Give him a chance. He is the only President we have.

However, I must render two admonitions.

The first what one of the female speakers said during the Women’s March: It is not….I the president, it is…..We the people.

The other from me…..The campaign is over. It is time to govern.

Enjoy your day!

PERSONAL RECOLLECTIONS

Today brings to mind three recollections. One well known. The other two personal.

The first not so long ago. On this date in 2008, Barack Obama was elected America’s first African-American President.

A history making date.

The second involves refugees and the Hungarian Revolution. The Revolution occurred in 1956. Hungary was Russian dominated. People unhappy. Protesting in the streets. Nothing violent.

After ten days, things heated up. Rocks and beer bottles being thrown at Russian soldiers and tanks. Days 11 and 12, the beer bottles turned into bullets.

On this date in 1956, the Russians said no more. They sent in the tanks. Blazing away. The so called Revolution was over. Two thousand five hundred killed, 2oo,ooo Hungarians fleeing the country.

Those who fled were refugees. A problem the world knows today.

Where to go?

Some ended up in the United States. How many I do not know. Many were college students. The students were taken in by various American colleges. Every college did its fair share.

I was a senior at Manhattan college. All of a sudden in the middle of a semester, we had a dozen Hungarian students in our midst.

One became a friend. Gergo. He spoke excellent English. We talked evenings after diner. Generally at a bench on campus.

Gergo told the story of the Revolution in simplistic terms. He said no one wanted a revolution. Especially the college students. He said that after drinking beer in the evenings, they would throw rocks and beer bottles at the Russian soldiers and tanks. For fun.

After a while, the Russians no longer consider the throwings a fun activity. They started shooting back.

The students got some guns and returned the fire. At this point not yet a revolution in their minds. Merely tit for tat.

When the tanks came out big time firing, things got serious. One night only. That is all it took. The students retaliated with molotov cocktails. No competition for the tanks.

The students knew they were done and had to get out of Hungary quickly. Here it was two weeks after fleeing and Gergo and I were talking about what happened.

No one argued about taking refugees in at the time. Of course, the number of Hungarian refugees was significantly less than those that have come out of Syria in recent times.

Personal letters from Santa Claus a final recollection.

I came across on the internet an advertisement by Magical Xmas Letters. Send the company $17.94 and your child will receive a personally signed letter from Santa Claus and some North Pole information. The letter printed. The signature written.

Back in the 1960s, two Utica attorneys did the same thing at Xmas time. Pat Bernardi and Jim Zogby. Law partners. Both now long gone.

Pat and Jim were five years older than me. Young lawyers did not make much money in those days. They came up with the idea of sending Santa Claus letters out. Parents wrote. Pat and Jim’s operation returned a handwritten and signed letter from Santa Claus.

The cost was relatively cheap. The exact amount, I cannot recall. Two dollars sticks in my mind. A probable price some fifty years ago. I had the letters sent to my children.

Pat and Jim’s Xmas business took hold. Soon they had to rent space and hire a number of women to write the letters. Even Pat and Jim got into handwriting responses. Business boomed.

A tiring, but banner Xmas season for Pat and Jim. An experience that left them extremely tired came Xmas Eve.

Bocce last night. Don’s Place won 2-1. Not good enough. Needed all three games. Will remain in second place.

Syracuse/Clemson tomorrow. Clemson a top 10 team. Favored by 27 points.

Syracuse has played well the last two games. I see the game closer. Maybe an upset?????

Installment 5 of a Key West Rotary history.

The year 1925.

Nineteen twenty five was a busy year for the Rotary. Today only a partial report. The year will take 1 or 2 additional installments to complete.

Sloppy Joe’s was not Sloppy Joe’s in 1925. It was the Victoria Restaurant.

On October 15, a Cuban Boy Scout Troop visited Key West. The Rotary honored the group at a luncheon at Victoria’s. The Scoutmaster only spoke Spanish. His words were translated by Sebastian Cabrera.

Dr. J. Y. Porter, Sr. was a Key West charter Rotarian, local physician, and the first public health doctor for the State of Florida. A week after the Cuban boy scout event, Dr. Porter was 78 years old. The Rotary threw him a birthday party. Talk, singing, and birthday cake with 78 candles. Porter blew them all out!

Judge Jefferson B. Browne recalled how Dr. Porter had been instrumental in stemming the spread of yellow fever in Jacksonville.

Dr. Porter had returned to Key West after his State service to take charge of the Chamber of Commerce.

Captain Jack Maher was commander of the Key West Army Barracks. At the party, he sang When You Were Young Maggie and The Sunshine of Your Smile. The latter being Dr. Porter’s favorite tune.

The Key West Rotary was conservation minded. Late in October, the Club endorsed a proposal to ban the shooting and trapping of birds and protecting Key deer.

Time does not change some things. We are still protecting Key deer. Dr. Porter spoke in support of protecting birds. He viewed birds as eating disease carrying mosquitoes and insects.

More 1925 to follow tomorrow.

Enjoy your day!

 

SARAH IS BACK IN TOWN

Dinner at Roostica last night. The sunday pasta special. Sat at the bar.

Sarah bartending! Back from Greece!

Excited. The trip flowed from her lips. No question she had a good time.

Three days in Athens. The balance of the trip on the island of Crete.

Sarah is a hiker and runner. I was unaware. Her days in Crete were spent hiking through one mountain pass to another and back. Or, up a rocky hill and down.

I would have died!

She had a wonderful time. I have to dine at Roostica more often to get caught up re the entire trip.

The Debate. I kept waiting for the shoe/bomb to fall. Never did. Donald was generally good. The result of the debate was a tie or I’d give Donald the edge.

I remain anti-Trump. His being a thug and bully evident. The man is not qualified in any respect to be President.

Trump and his team say the tape is of no consequence. Eleven years old. Bill Clinton’s shenanigans are more than 20 years old.

Fantasy Fest around the corner. One of the top events each year is Headdress Ball.

This year Headdress will be held under a gigantic tent at Truman waterfront. Tom Luna the emcee. Christopher Peterson and Terri White making special appearances. And of course the Headdress participants.

This years’ event will be the 34th. A record!

I know Headdress Ball from its Pier House days. On the beach. Thousands of people all over the property. Great show. A fun time!

Larry Smith was active with Headdress for many years. Some as Director. Always did an excellent job.

Headdress Ball is held on thursday night. There is another prime event that evening. Sloppy Joe’s Toga Party. Which spills out of the bar and covers 2-3 blocks of Duval. The ladies occasionally showing a personal body part in exchange for beads.

Between Headdress Ball and Toga Party, thursday night my favorite Fantasy Fest time.

Now my enjoyment will be limited to Toga Party. The Waterfront site is too far away for me to make both. I am not complaining, however. I am a voyeur at heart. Toga/bead exchanges more than enough to make my evening.

My bocce team continues to do good. Actually, excellent! Won all three games again thursday. Now 11-1. Tied for first with Hell’s Rangers. The best of the best for years. An interesting match when the two teams meet.

Again, I point out the team is doing better without me than it did with me.

Most of the Atlantic beaches devastated by Matthew are gone. Especially dunes. Have to be fixed. I  observed correcting such a beach problem following Wilma. Key West’s Smathers Beach. Smathers had no dunes, however.

The surge blew the sand across the road. Piled it high between curb and the treeline behind. Like 20 plus feet.

The area stunk. Smell horrible. The sand replete with dead fish and I don’t know what else.

The beach correction a simple process. Two fold.

First, the sand piled on the other side of the street was filtered. A huge screen. Lets the sand pass through. The dead fish and everything else held by the screen.

The sand spread over the former beach.

Still not enough sand. Sand had to be brought in. It is purchased from elsewhere and driven in in dump trucks. The sand dumped on the beach and spread.

Voila! Smathers Beach was as before.

I am trying to recall where the sand came from. Something tells me Bermuda. I could be wrong.

The worst Vice President of modern times was Spiro Agnew. He resigned this date 1973 from the position. After pleading guilty to income tax evasion. The tax evasion charge was based on his taking kick backs while Governor of Maryland and continuing to receive them while Vice President.

I never liked Agnew. He was a law school graduate who never really practiced. Became an Allstate claim adjuster. Allstate claim adjusters back then were not nice guys.

During the campaign, Agnew spoke in extremely disparaging terms about those protesting the Vietnam war. Venom fell from his lips.

The man was a bully. I thought a little crazy, also. He got what he deserved.

Oh, he ran as Vice President on Richard Nixon’s ticket. Nixon resigned less than a year later. Birds of a feather.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

HEMINGWAY RECALLED

The past few hours have been Hemingway time! Hemingway time recalled.

I stayed in last night. I was tired. Watched TV. Hit a gold vein! Hemingway’s For Whom The Bell Tolls. The 1943 movie starring Gary Cooper.

Woke at 4 this morning unable to sleep. Turned on TV. The gold vein had not run out. Hemingway’s A Farewell To Arms playing. The 1932 movie starring Gary Cooper.

I believe A Farewell To Arms was Hemingway at his best.

More Hemingway.

Hemingway frequented Sloppy Joe’s. He and Joe were best of friends. Hemingway started drinking at Sloppy Joe’s when it was located on Green Street.

Late in the evening on this day in 1935, Joe moved his business to its present location on Duval. Hemingway helped him move. Carried tables and bar stools. Took the ceramic urinals home. Those urinals today are hooked up to the water system and supply the cats who make their home at the Hemingway House on Whitehead.

A special morning weather wise. Absolutely no breeze. Water calm. Like a mirror. Sky blue. No white clouds. There is a taste/smell in the air. Of spring, not summer. Interesting since the past two weeks have been humid and I have been describing it as summer time having arrived.

Lunched at Waterfront Restaurant yesterday. Business poor. Few customers. I ate at the bar. Was not crazy about my lunch. First time I have felt that way. I am concerned for the viability of this generally fine Key West restaurant. I wish the proprietors good luck. They have big dollars invested.

Road construction in the area did not help. Lower Caroline and the huge parking lot being repaired at the same time. What idiot in City Hall made that decision?

Big race saturday morning! The Zero K Race. Course is the length of Cow Key Bridge. Three hundred feet. 1,500 runners expected. Many dressed as cows. Record time 23.1 seconds. Some will be out to beat it.

This week’s KONK Life column is titled When education Fails, A Nation Fails. It is on the stands. Also linked to my Key West Lou website this morning. .keywestlou.com.

Navy Seal commandos have returned. They are training in Key West harbor waters.

Merle Haggard died. A country music icon. He had 38 #1 country hits.

When we think of the American Revolution, it is of the land battles. Concord, Lexington, New York, Trenton, and Saratoga are recalled. Rarely do we hear of the naval battles.

Today is significant in the annals of naval battles at the time. On this day in 1776, there was a second Lexington battle. The U.S. warship Lexington defeated and captured the British warship Edward off the coast of Virginia. A big win for our new country.

Part of Key West folklore/history is Count Carl Von Cosel. His lady love Elena Hoyos died. He stole her body. Kept her in a bed for several years while treating her in every possible way to make her appear alive.

An attempt is now being made to memorialize the event. The Morbid Anatomy Museum is located in Brooklyn. Ronni Thomas is a filmmaker in residence and director of the film.

Funds are being raised to produce the film. $50,000 the goal. Thus far $5,550 raised. Deadline for the fund raising is April 26.

Von Cosel’s a Key West bred story.

Take a look at the website re the film. An historical document. Interesting. http://bit.ly/voncosel.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

JIMMY BUFFETT / KENNY CHESNEY

A lot to cover this morning.

Jimmy Buffett was in Cuba during the Obama visit. There is a photo of him on the internet joking around before the baseball game. Proper that Buffett be in Cuba these recent important days. He’s Key West’s man. Got his start here. He and Key West one.

While Buffett was in Cuba, Kenny Chesney was in Key West. Saturday at Sloppy Joe’s. A free concert. Traffic gridlock. People clogging the streets who could not get in. Sound equipment set up so they could hear.

I approve of Obama’s visit to Cuba. However a sense of hypocrisy overrides the visit. Obama publicly criticized Castro for human rights violations. What about Guantanamo? Our shame, our human rights violations.

People who live in glass houses should not throw stones.

Yesterday busy busy.

Spent the afternoon fine tuning last night’s blog talk radio show. Did the show at 9. The Maldives tale drew much interest. Most people 30 and under have been divorced three times. Not a burden, not a cross. Getting married and divorced cheap and easy.

The Maldives have the highest divorce rate in the world. Reason. Horniness. For real.

Did Happy Hour at Martin’s with June. Her friends Peggy and Wayne joined us. Great conversation. Included Catholicism as it affected all of us growing up.

Then to Aqua. Aqua Idol finals. My friend Howard Livingston judging and performing. Stopped by to say hello. He had not yet arrived.

Left June at Aqua. She wanted to see the show. I headed over to Larry and Christine’s. They were having a party. Their parties always good. Everyone there. Including my former bocce team and his. I stayed two hours and left. Had to hurry home to do Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

Larry advised he went to Yankee Jack’s memorial service at the Bull and Whistle sunday. A good crowd. I don’t know how he knew. The event was not publicized in the paper. I would have gone. Loved Yankee!

Big day in American history. On this day in 1775, Patrick Henry uttered his famous words: “I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death.”

Anna back home in Novara. She e-mailed what is happening. The Brussels bombings impacted life in the Mont Blanc area where she had been skiing over the weekend.

Mont Blanc is the highest point in Europe. Majestic. The roads do not go over Mont Blanc. Several mile long tunnels have been constructed beneath the mountain.

To get back and forth between Italy’s Courmayeur and France’ s Chamonix, a tunnel drive. Long.

Anna returned monday to Novara. Part of her trip was driving through the tunnel. Brussel’s explosions yesterday/tuesday. Anna reports authorities thought the tunnel was in danger. Italian and French military and police were all around and in the tunnel. The tunnel closed down , of course.

Immigration a problem Italy. Not so much Muslims from the Middle East. Rather, Muslims from North Africa.

Ann a wrote me of a tragedy which occurred sunday. A Romanian immigrant involved rather than one from North Africa. He tried to rob a 22 year old girl on the train connecting Novara and Milan.

A train I have taken many times. One Anna takes frequently. He hit the girl in the head with a hammer. Fractured her skull. He has been arrested for attempted murder. She operated on for a fractured skull.

The two dead Brussels terrorists must be disappointed. No 21 virgins.

Remember George Carlin. A great comedian in the 1960s and 1970s. Prone to use off color words during his shows. Carlin had a litany of seven dirty words. He described them as “filthy words.”

The words were shit, piss, fuck, cunt, cocksucker, motherfucker and tits.

Mom, forgive me!

He was arrested for using them on one occasion

In 2000, a law was passed establishing the U.S. National Recording Registry. To be maintained in the Library of Congress. Today Carlin’s seven dirty words become a part of the Registry. He joins such other memorables as the song I Will Survive and Martin Luther King’s I Have A Dream.

Qualification for entry to the Registry is that the recorded words must be “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.”

Carlin’s words acceptable on TV and in movies today. Not used often on regular TV. Used as they fit in on cable TV. Legal since 2010.

As with the Virginia Slims advertisement of many years ago, we have come a long way!

Syracuse plays Gonzaga friday in the Sweet Sixteen. Game time 9:40. Hope I can stay awake.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

TOGA TOGA TOGA

This is the night! Perhaps the best of Fantasy Fest! Toga Party!

The place Sloppy Joe’s. Inside and out. The street packed.

Men and women wearing white togas. More women than men. Togas skimpy.

It is negotiation time. The key for the ladies is to get as many beads as possible. The men want to see and the women are willing to show. First, the breasts. Then a move downward, front and back. Each a separate transaction. The lower the body part exhibited, the more expensive. Breasts go for one ring of beads. The southern exhibits, two or more.

Ain’t nothing under the toga or covering the privates.

I suspect I enjoy Toga Party best for three reasons. First, I am a voyeur. What a bad boy am I! Second, I am a man. Men are visual. We enjoy looking at naked women. Third, I never got to a toga party while in college. Remember the movie Animal House? I went to a Catholic college and we did not do those things.

Years ago, I would not have missed the Toga Party. In recent years, they are not as important any more. Tonight, I have bocce. Bocce supersedes toga. An age thing, I suspect.

I watched the Republican debates last night. Each Republican debate is worse than the previous one. I don’t understand. There is much talent on the stage. The moderators are a major problem. Last night’s were the worst. The questions stupid, no respect for the candidates, not fair with follow ups.

Mike Huckabee got into something close to my heart. Social Security. He talked about the $3 trillion the government in effect stole from the Social Security Fund.

My day yesterday began with the anti-gravity treadmill. The power went out while I was on the machine. About 10 minutes into my workout. Power failure common in the Keys. Some people left. Never know how long these things last. I waited it out. Locked into the treadmill. Power returned in fifteen minutes. I was glad I waited.

My next  chore was to get the flat fixed. The tire was sitting on my back seat. With a rim in it, the tire would not fit in the Volkswagen Beetle trunk.

Got to Sears at noon. Told it would take to 4 or 5 before car was done. I suspected it would take that long. I was like 88th in line!

I left the car. Walked over to Regal Movies. I figured I would have lunch and then go to the movies. That would kill the 4-5 hours.

No afternoon movie available at the theater.

Enjoyed a two hour lunch at Outback. Read the newspapers. Left at 2. How long could I sit there? I even ordered a dessert to kill time.

Then to T.J. Max and Sears. Looked over men’s clothes. Not much time killed. Looked at everything else, except ladies’ underwear.

It was now three o’clock. Where was I to go? I was at the Sears Shopping Center without a car. I opted to return to the tire facility. My car was still in the lot. Had not been touched yet. Asked the guy about when. He said many still ahead of you. About five o’clock.

Went into Sears’ waiting room. Air conditioning not working well. Slept off and on.

Finally, the car was finished at 5:30. They could not find a hole. Did not know why tire went flat. Cost, $24.

I am concerned it will go flat again. We shall see. The tire is only six months old.

I hurried home to watch the debates which began at 6. First thing I did was pour myself a gin. Then blended into the recliner chair to watch.

I was tired.

Never got to watch the Royals/Mets game. Mets down 2. Next two games in New York should be interesting. The Royals almost won the World Series last year. I think they are committed this year and will be difficult to deny.

This week’s KONK Life column Boudicca, Warrior Queen linked to my Key West Lou website this morning. keywestlou.com.

Syracuse plays Florida State saturday. Syracuse a 20.5 underdog at the moment.

Bocce tonight. Play Larry’s team. We are tied with his team in third place. Serious business tonight.

Enjoy your day! If you are in Key West, add to it. Visit Toga tonight at Sloppy Joe’s!