CHANGE

Time changes everything. Nothing remains the same. Change constant.

So too with Key West and visitors.

I have been doing Key West for 26 years. Except for the first year, for extended periods each year. The last 11, full time.

Until 5 years ago, Key West was predictable as regards the leaving of tourists and snowbirds.

The monday after Easter Sunday, half left. Their sudden absence obvious.

One week later, the rest left.

From that time forward for several months, locals used to say you could throw a bowling ball down Duval and hit no one.

Did you ever wonder why locals get a discount at restaurants? Simple. Locals used to be the sole source of business after Easter and into the Fall.

No more.

Five years or so ago brought a dramatic change. Tourists and snowbirds still come and go. Yet Key West is always crowded. A bit less after Easter, but not that much so.

The reason why our streets are crowded with cars, bicycles and mopeds. And, of course, pedestrians.

The change the result of excellent advertising of Key West by  State and local groups.

Another change is occurring. The flavor of Key West. The funky disappearing. We are becoming as other Florida vacation spots. Men even wearing sport jackets.

My Easter was different. I did the Easter egg hunt and breakfast with Lisa and family. Invited to four dinners/parties in the afternoon. Thought I would hit one or two.

Never made it. Got lazy. Laid around reading, watching TV and snoozing.

Micky Mantle one of baseball’s all time greats. On this day in 1951, Mantle made his major league debut with the New York Yankees.

TV was still in its infancy. Not all baseball games being televised. TV screen 6 inches by 4 inches.

You went to the ball park if you wanted to see the Micky Mantles play. I was privileged to watch Mantle play at Yankee Stadium several times.

Enjoy your day!

 

DAD’S BIRTHDAY…..WOULD HAVE BEEN

My Father was born April 10, 1914. He died four years ago at age 98. God bless him!

If he were still alive today, he would have been 102. Neither strange nor impossible. His sister Mary lived to 102.

I miss you, Dad!

I who am retired from bocce taught a newbe yesterday. At high noon. In the heat of the mid day sun.

Ken is a Chart Room friend. Has a home on White Street. He mentioned Friday night he had purchased a bag of balls, but did not know how to play. I offered to show him.

Turned out I am better at teaching than playing. Or, Ken is a super athlete. Whatever, Ken had a good time. As did I.

Yesterday afternoon was spent researching this week’s KONK Life column. Finally decided on a topic. Concerns Shakespeare. His compiled works, sexuality, and famous phrases. Famous phrases from his works like “wild goose chase, fair play, it’s Greek to me, and love is blind.” A winner!

I will write the column this afternoon.

Last night was Tavern ‘n Town. To enjoy a good meal and listen to Bobby Nesbitt.

I am glad the season is over. There was no difficulty getting a seat at the bar.

Met Cindy and Clara. Two lovely ladies. Cindy was on the other side of the bar. She came over alone at first to chat. She recognized me from a pic.

Love her! She has been reading the blog daily for years. Recommends it to her friends.

Cindy is a retired school teacher from Toms River, New Jersey. We are neighbors. She lives on Big Coppit. Spends eight months a year here.

Lovely and charming. Seemed to know everyone. I watched her after our little talk. She was chatting with friends at a table.

Clara joined us. Lovely, also. She and Cindy have been friends since school days. Clara visits Cindy every year here in the Keys. It was Clara’s birthday.

Bobby Nesbitt was at his best! He especially got to me with his rendition of My Way…..I took the blows, I did it my way.

Several middle aged couples came into the bar. It dawned on me that those in the 40-50 area always seem to be happy. Their faces glow. It is the right time for them. Things are good and they are able to enjoy the fruits of their labor.

A lot look like honeymooners. Perhaps that is the reason for the glow.

The Seven Mile Bridge Run is behind us. 1,500 participated yesterday.

This morning at 10 is the famous Cow Key Bridge Run. All of 300 feet. People costumed. Many as cows. The race is over as soon as it begins. Party time follows. No one too tired to party.

Pati, Pati, Pati. Pati Le Hat is a love of my life. Her faithful companion Blackie has been diagnosed with cancer. She is doing every thing to save him. The bills are mounting. A fundraiser is scheduled for 3-7 next Sunday at Grunts on Caroline. Food, etc. donated. Musician time, also. Mark your calendars.

Pope Frances is getting kicked around. By his own bishops. The bishops think Frances is too liberal, is violating Church doctrine, etc. The bishops are comparable to the far right in the U.S. Congress.

The latest skirmish involves letting divorced remarried Catholics receive Communion. The bishops say no. Remarried Catholics are living in adultery. Ergo, cannot partake of the sacraments. Frances says we are all God’s children, lets cut to the chase.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

 

 

HOPE EVERYTHING WORKS

I have had a bad week with the computer. Certain facts must be understood.

I am not computer literate. I am of that generation that does not deal with machines well.

Some have asked where was my backup. I try. Understand I write this blog read by thousands world wide from a desk in my bedroom. I am not NBC or the New York Times.

My backup hardware when I have a problem is to go to Lisa’s and use her computer. This I did. I knew I had a virus. The virus showed up immediately as I used Lisa’s computer. I shut it down immediately, of course. Whatever my problem, it had to do with the program I use.

I did not want to share the virus with all of you. It took this long to get everything resolved.

I am back! Hopefully.

The highlight of my week without having to do a daily blog, weekly newspaper column, and weekly blog talk radio show, was meeting Patrick. That Patrick. Not as bad a guy as he sounds when he comments. We had an enjoyable half hour conversation.

Last night was Happy Hour at Martin’s with Jenna. More than a month since we had been together. She is more beautiful each time I see her. We enjoyed great conversation and small lamb chops, brie, crab cakes and sushi tuna.

Martin’s Happy Hour is the best deal in town.

Sherry is a loyal blog reader. I forget from where. She wrote several months ago asking if I could help her daughter Cassie get an internship in communications, TV, etc. I spoke with Jenna. Jenna interviewed Cassie and took her on. Jenna has told me several times what a find Cassie is. She is better prepared than other interns who have worked with Jenna.

Cassie is a student at Ferris State in Michigan. Jenna believes the school was instrumental in Cassie being as job ready as she is.

David Wolkowsky and I have become friends over the past several months at physiotherapy. I wrote a column two weeks ago in KONK Life titled David Wolkowsky. The man is Mr. Key West. Now, 96. David built the Pier House and Reach. He gave Jimmy Buffett his first paying job.

David is aware I broke my toe. A nice guy. He had delivered to me today at big sponge cake with fluffy white frosting. Written in blue on top: A Place For The Toe. Thank you, David.

Tom Oosterhoudt is a well known man about town. Conch Color is his production.

Tom’s back got screwed up a couple of years ago. He has had several heavy surgeries. Conch Color is a weekly. Tom does an editorial each week. This week he made mention that while he was in Miami for the last operation, Randy Roberts visited him. Randy washed his hair and face.

I have never seen as many tourists as this season. Town packed. Sidewalks so crowded it is difficult to walk. You flow with the crowd.

Syracuse did not make the big tournament. I suspect we will play in the NIT. A disappointment. However, I did not expect Syracuse to make it. A horrible season! Every now and then it happens.

Trump is a danger to our country, democracy, and way of life. I continue to compare him to Hitler in the early and mid 1930s in Germany.

If he becomes President, the country will be in far worse shape than before the election.

Elizabeth Warren recently commented on the Republican Party and Trump’s candidacy.

She said the Republican Party has welcomed every radical group into the party over the years. Now, they are taking over. They have the party by the throat. She believes the Republican Party will pay the price for its own extremism. Her conviction is the Republican Party has only itself to blame.

I agree with Warren.

The U.S. owes China roughly $1.5 trillion. China is also buying businesses in our country. The most recent acquisition is the historic Hotel del Coronado near San Diego. A Chinese insurance company paid $6.5 billion for it.

We are selling ourselves to the Chinese.

I hope this blog appears today. My frustration and exasperation will know no end if it does not.

Enjoy your day!

 

I’M BACK!

I am back!

Computer sick for 8 days. Louis not. Lost a lot of files. Needed to replace hardware.

Missed writing every day. Free time all day. Not accustomed to it. Glad to be back.

Today’s blog short. Tomorrow, back in full force.

Met two loyal readers while computer down. Two that take shots at what I write. One more than the other.

The # 1 nasty reader re is Patrick. No one worse. Even some of you fight with him.

Met Patrick at the doctor’s this week. We talked for a half hour. Guess what? He’s a nice guy! We represent opposite ends of the political spectrum. He is leaving Key West this weekend. We agreed that when he returns,  we will enjoy a few drinks together.

The other thorn in my side is Diana Milikan. Had dinner together. Loved her! An intelligent might woman. She just might write a little less severe.

That is all for today! Talk with you tomorrow.