HEMINGWAY HATED HIS MOTHER

Strong title. Can’t argue with history, however. Fact is fact.

Hemingway hated his mother.

John dos Passos, famous writer and Hemingway friend, said Hemingway was the only man he ever knew who truly hated his mother.

His mother was Grace Hall Hemingway. An aspiring opera singer, she settled into marriage and family. Taught music and voice lessons from the Hemingway home. Strictly religious, a woman with a melodramatic and mercurial temperament.

Grace had a peculiarity. Probably what contributed to her son hating her. She had a fondness for dressing Hemingway and his older sister as twins. Sometimes as boys with short hair, sometimes as girls with flowery dresses and long hair.

Hemingway was concerned at Christmas time when he was 3 that Santa Claus would not know he was a boy.

He was 6 years old when his mother finally permitted him to cut off his long locks for good.

Historians claim being dressed as a girl, etc. is why Hemingway spent his life proving his masculinity to himself and those closest to him.

The bitterness of his mother’s treatment is further evident in the way Hemingway treated female characters in his fiction and the way he treated his 4 wives.

Life is strange. Strange the impact a parent has on a child. Good, bad, or indifferent.

Spent time at the Chart Room last night.

John bartending. Steve and Cindy at the bar. Also Mike, owner of the Grand Guesthouse.

Steve and Cindy unquestionably Key West historians. They have resided in Key West since the mid 1970’s. Steve owned a series of taco stands in Key West and throughout Florida. Cindy was Jimmy Buffett’s assistant for more than 30 years.

They both know everything there is to know about Key West for the past 50 years.

Mike owns the Grand Guesthouse in Key West. A year since I had last seen him. We chatted a while. Learned something I did not know. His wife is Chef at the Reach. She has to be an absolutely outstanding cook. One of the finest steak houses in Key West.

A side note. Common knowledge that David Wolkowsky built the Pier House. What most do not know is that he also built the Reach. Two fine hotels on the opposite sides of the island.

The Reach initially was a rough sand beach with a shack sitting on it. Owned by the Catholic Church. A gathering spot for druggies. Wolkowsky bought the property, threw the beach bums out, and built a magnificent edifice.

A busy afternoon ahead for me. Sloan at 2. Some important work to be done. One of my programs is screwed up. Then at 3:30, Syracuse/Georgetown. Old time Big East basketball foes. Syracuse 6-2, Georgetown 7-1. Syracuse a 12 point favorite.

Patrick Ewing was an All-American star at Georgetown in his college days. Syracuse coached by Boeheim back then. Boeheim now in his 43rd year as Syracuse coach.

Ewing today in his second year as head basketball coach at Georgetown. A Hall of Fame Coach and a Hall of Fame Player oppose each other this afternoon.

Tonight one of my favorite Key West evenings. The Christmas Parade. Like one no where else. The whole town turns out to watch. I sometimes think half of Key West is in the parade itself. An exaggeration, of course.

I generally watch somewhere on Truman. Near Don’s Place. With Lisa and the grandkids.

Don’t know if I will make it tonight. I will be tired from my afternoon and will probably end up staying home.

The stock market.. Like Humpty Dumpty……Falling down!

Blame Trump.

The tariffs and sanctions he has imposed.

Things are not getting better.

Last week at the G 20 in Buenos Aires, Trump and China President Xi were having a private dinner with staff to try to work out the tariff war which is greatly adversely affecting the U.S. and China.

Duplicity reared its ugly head.

While Trump and Xi were talking in Buenos Aires, the U.S. had a prominent Chinese business person arrested at the Vancouver airport. Huawei CFO Meng. Huawei is a major Chinese company. Heavily involved in cell phones in Africa, Europe and Asia. Meng’s father and Xi close friends.

Meng was on her way to Mexico. She was arrested because her company has been doing business with companies doing business with Iran. Contrary to Trump imposed rules.

Such bullshit!

The horror of it all is that Trump and Xi were supposedly trying to work things out tariff wise at the moment of her arrest.

China pissed! Big time! A major insult by way of Asian thinking to China and Xi.

The market has been dropping dramatically as a result. One day up, I think. The rest down. Big numbers.

Yesterday the market dropped 558 points to 24,388. The 558 point drop erased all market gains for the year.

Good job, Donald!

The drop in my opinion not over. The tariffs and sanctions remain. China the biggest concern. Arresting Meng did not help.

If the market drops below 2,000 by year’s end, it will be the beginning of a world wide recession. Hopefully it will not hit 2,000.

I predicted last year that late this year or early into next year, the U.S. would be in recession. Not because I am an economic genius. Rather because I am 83 years old and have seen recessions develop in the past.

Enjoy your day!

 

CHINA 2018 THE JAPAN OF 1941?

December 7, 1941. In the words of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, “A date that will live in infamy.” Japan had bombed Pearl Harbor.

There is cause and effect. Every action does have an equal and opposite reaction. Are the U.S. and China on a path similar to that  which led to the Japanese attack?

Examine the facts.

It was December 6, 1941, the day before Pearl Harbor. U.S. intelligence less than adequate. Roosevelt had been told the Japanese fleet was heading for Thailand.

Roosevelt sent a telegram to Emperor Hirohito: “For the sake of humanity” intervene “to prevent further death and destruction in the world.”

Roosevelt amusingly told his wife Eleanor…..”The son of man has just sent his final message to the son of God.”

U.S. intelligence was wrong. Roosevelt relied on the erroneous intelligence. The next day, Hawaii was attacked. Not Thailand.

Why did Japan attack Pearl Harbor? Japan was a non-entity in world affairs in the years leading to 1900. Isolated from the rest of the world.

In 1894 and 1904, Japan successfully engaged in wars against nations considered superior to Japan. During World War I, Japan participated on the side of the Allies.

The Great Depression affected Japan as most nations at the time. Tensions had begun  growing between the U.S. and Japan 10 years earlier. Driven by economic and demographic woes.

Japan invaded Manchuria and other parts of China. The League of Nations condemned the invasion. Japan withdrew from the League as a result.

The Sino-Japanese War began in 1937. Japan acted in an extremely brutal fashion. Perpetrated massacres. Mass killings and rapes.

It was obvious Japan was expanding globally. The U.S. tried to stop Japan’s expansion. The U.S. imposed economic sanctions on Japan, including trade embargoes on aircraft exports, oil, and scrap metal.

In September 1940, Japan signed the Tripartite Pact with Germany and Italy. The U.S. not involved in war with Germany and Italy yet.

The U.S. and Japan negotiated Japan’s expansion, the sanctions, etc. for months. Without success.

The U.S. had hoped the embargoes on oil and other key goods would lead Japan to halt its expansions.

The opposite proved correct. The sanctions and other penalties actually convinced Japan to stand its ground. Stand up for Japan.

Japan became increasingly angered. Thought U.S. conduct a part of Western interference in Asian affairs.

Importantly also, Japan felt the U.S. was not paying Japan the respect to which it was entitled. Japan believed they had earned respect as a world power beginning with the wars surrounding 1900 and its actions into the 1940’s.

Respect/face very important in Asian thinking. Neither was forthcoming from the U.S. There was a failure to recognize the new kid on the block.

Japan realized war was inevitable. Japan recognized the odds were stacked against them in a military confrontation. Success depended on surprise. The target Pearl Harbor. Four thousand miles from Japan’s homeland. The U.S. would not expect it.

Pearl Harbor was perfect. The U.S. fleet, except for carriers, in harbor. The fleet and U.S. morale would be destroyed. There would be no will to fight back.

Japan underestimated the U.S. and its people.

Sanctions a major cause compelling Japan’s decision to attack.

U.S. sanctions in effect today against China. The tariff wars. War, global recession possible. Perhaps imminent.

The issues the same. Overbearing sanctions, the economies of both countries in disarray. Everything moving at a rapid pace.

Trump the creator of the present scenario. His intelligence advise questionable. Where it does exist, he does not pay attention. He refuses to be properly briefed.

An example is Meng Wanzhou who was arrested/detained in Vancouver saturday. At the same time Trump was sitting with China’s President Xi in Buenos Aires.

Meng is CFO of China’s second largest technology company Huawei. Her father founder and a leading Chinese figure.

Huawei has been violating U.S. imposed sanctions by doing business with Iran. The reason Meng was arrested. She is awaiting deportation to New York for a federal court appearance.

Note again she was arrested while Trump and Xi negotiating at the G 20. An embarrassing loss of face for Xi.

The question also arises as to what right the U.S. has to impose penalties on China for doing business with Iran. The Iran problem is between the U.S. and Iran, not the U.S., Iran, and China.

Word is that Trump was unaware Meng was being arrested. John Bolton says Trump did not know and had not been briefed.

Makes one wonder what is going on at the highest levels of U.S. government.

The outcome of any military conflict uncertain. Both nations have nuclear weapons. China considered the world’s second most powerful nation. It may be questionable whether it is behind the U.S. militarily.

In the past five years, China has gone all out improving its military. In excess of 350 new naval vessels constructed with up to date nuclear missile capacity.

China has also constructed islands where none existed in Asian waters. Islands out of nothing. Now airbases with planes and troops stationed thereon.

It makes me question whether the U.S. is still the strongest nation in the world. I would not what to find out the answer.

Similarities exist between the Japan of yesterday and the China of today. Especially as regards each’s relationship at the specific time with the U.S.

Hopefully both the U.S. and China will negotiate their way out of this mess.

We are entering a Don’t Tread On Me situation. Where one side will not take it anymore. Similar to the Boston Tea Party, the Alamo, Pearl Harbor. Not a comfortable time.

MERYL STREEP AND ANTONIO BANDERAS IN TOWN

Meryl Streep and Antonio Banderas in Key West for a few days. Filming a movie. The Laundromat.

Movie stars Gary Oldman, also. Do not think he is here. Actual filming in Key West only 2 days. 12/5 & 12/6.

Filming taking place on Caroline Street. Caroline already Christmas decorated. Decorations had to be removed for the filming.

Locals hired as extras. $125 for a 12 hour day.

The Laundromat is the story of a group of journalists who took part in unearthing 11.5 million files linking the world’s most powerful figures to secret banking accounts to avoid taxes. The film chronicles how a Panamanian law firm allowed the wealthy and connected to funnel money illegally via tax havens.

Last night, a colorful one. The Lighted Bike Ride. Christmas decorated  bicycles and riders. Hundreds participated. The Ride ended at Mary Ellen’s on Applerouth. Applerouth one block long. Closed. A block party held for the bike riders.

Love Mary Ellen’s! Not 2 years old yet. A popular spot. Inexpensive. The best tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. Funky decorated. Funky games. Like tuesday evenings at 9 for the Dildo Races.

Stopped at Blue Macaw. Cold! Seventy degrees. Temperature dropped to low 60’s during the evening. Heat back on!

Bar crowd skimpy. Said hello to Alisa and Stephanie. Chatted too briefly with Angie.

A bit warmer tonight. Low 70. Still heat time for locals. Our blood is thin!

I watched President Bush’s service at the Washington National Cathedral. Moving. Mourning and celebratory. More celebratory. Showed sides of the man not generally known. Bush had a sense of humor. Stories told which shared that facet of his life.

One of the more humorous involved Bush’s operation of the motorboat at his Maine home. Bush was less than a good driver. He scared the hell out of Putin!

Tears shed on occasion. By those in the Cathedral and Louis.

The eulogies personal and warm. Son George broke down and cried near the end of his. Former Senator Simpson could have had a career as a comedian. Former Canadian Prime minister Mulroney, also.

Jon Mecham articulate. Warm. Weaves words well. Described the President as Mr. Peepers who wanted to be John Wayne to the laughter of all.

Perhaps not everyone. I refer to President Trump. Perhaps Melanie, also. Both obviously uncomfortable, a strange addition to the rest in the Cathedral.

The former Presidents and their spouses sat together in the front row. Trump and Melania came in after they had been seated a while. Before their appearance, the former Presidents and wives were chatting and joking.

Trump arrived and everyone went stiff. Sat quietly staring ahead.

The Obamas were seated next to the Trumps. They briefly and respectfully greeted the Trumps. The Clintons would have nothing to do with him nor Trump they.

Trump appeared uncomfortable throughout. Scowling and arms crossed. Slouching forward. Looked like a slob compared to the other Presidents.

The thought just occurred. If you remove the T from Trump and replace wit with a G, it becomes Grump. Respectfully, what Trump appeared to be during the service.

Trump supported by the Evangelicals. A strong religious group in the United States. Trump did not appear evangelical yesterday. He did not participate in prayers or hymns. The Apostles’ Creed was recited by all. It was even printed in the program. Trump’s lips closed throughout, as were Melania’s. So too with the Lord’s Prayer.

One other Presidential observation. President Carter and Hillary. Sat next to each other. A “created” space between them. Appeared to be by choice. Never saw them talk to each other.

Family. The Bush family tight. Close. The influence of George Sr. and Barbara apparent.

It was obvious throughout that brothers Jeb and George have a close relationship.

Today ends the President’s final services. The family has to be beat. They  are in Houston for a service at the President’s personal Church. Then a 70 mile train ride to his Library where he will be buried with Barbara and Robin.

This is the first time in more than half a century a political figure worthy of note has been  train transported to his final resting place. Robert Kennedy. I clearly recall. A train took his body to Washington. The tracks along the way lined with people paying their last respects. As thousands had done a hundred years earlier for Lincoln.

God bless President Bush! God bless our having been reminded of him. It comes at a time in American history when we need to recall there have been Presidents of character, morality, empathy, humanity, etc.

Enjoy your day!

A DAY OF NATIONAL MOURNING

This morning at 11, family, friends, world, and national leaders will pay homage to George H. W. Bush at the Washington National Cathedral.

We no longer refer to funeral services as a time for sorrow, a time for mourning. Though in fact they are. Over the years those two words have transformed into a time for celebration.

Whatever, all apply.

While Bush’s life is being celebrated in the Cathedral, I will be full of sorrow. My heart will mourn for a good man gone.

I will shed some tears. Always do at events of this nature. A box of tissues nearby.

The Washington National Cathedral was completed in 1990. Following 83 years of construction. Though not complete till 1990, used for religious services in the years leading up to 1990.

Woodrow Wilson and Helen Keller are laid to rest within the walls of the Cathedral.

Later today, Bush will be flown to Houston. Tomorrow at 5:15 pm, he will be buried on the grounds of the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum next to his wife Barbara and daughter Robin.

Television yesterday showed former Senator  and Presidential candidate Bob Dole pay his last respects to Bush at the Capitol Rotunda. Moving. Friends and foes in the past. One saying good bye to the other.

Bush and Dole are members of the Greatest Generation. Both fought with distinction in World War II. Bush as a Navy carrier pilot shot down twice. Dole as an infantry man so severely wounded he was lucky to survive. Let alone still living today at age 95.

It was touching to watch Dole be helped from his wheel chair to offer a final salute to his friend and leader.

Syracuse won big time last night. Beat Northeastern 72-49. The team looked good. May they continue improving.

Syracuse’s next foe old time rival Georgetown. Saturday afternoon.

Immediately following the game, it was Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Enjoyed doing the show last night. Then again, I enjoy doing it every time it is done. The show went smoothly. Many thoughts shared.

My dear friend Lauri Thibaud has left the Rum Barrel and returned to Aqua. She will be working the Back Bar saturday and sunday evenings. Saturdays beginning at 5, sundays at 4.

Harry Truman time again.

I mentioned yesterday how Truman had bad eyesight, wanted to join the Missouri national guard in 1905, and feared he would fail the eye test. He cheated. Sort of. He memorized the eye chart. Passed with flying colors!

Truman now a private. Proud. Wanted his grandmother Louisa Young to see him in his uniform. He made a special trip to Grandview, Missouri to visit her.

Wore his uniform. Blue with red stripes down the trouser legs, red piping on the cuffs, and a red fourragere over the shoulder.

His grandmother was outraged! She told him the uniform reminded her of the Union soldiers who pillaged the family farm during the Civil War. She admonished him never to return wearing the uniform again.

He never did.

Enjoy your day!

WHY PARIS IS BURNING

Public demonstrations in Paris out of control. A month already. Fires everywhere. Big time damage. Four killed, hundreds injured.

Why? Because the government has imposed a new and higher tax on gasoline which was scheduled to go into effect January 1.

Driving is expensive in certain European countries. Italy and France examples.

Gasoline costs much more than in the United States. At least two times as much. The price of a gallon of gas in France today $5.54. Italy similarly high.

People do not fill their tanks up. Too expensive at one shot. Put in 10 or 20 euros. Like you and I putting in $10 or $20.

In addition to gas, there is an additional financial burden. Makes the cost of gas look minuscule.

Most highways are privatized. The government rents a roadway for 50 or 100 years to a private corporation or sells it outright to the corporation. The corporation in turn agrees to maintain and operate the highway.

No bargain to the consumer. Those who operate motor vehicles on the highways. The corporations impose tolls. The tolls astronomical. Beyond comprehension. So bad that locals opt to drive on secondary narrow pot filled 2 lane roads. Where people’s lives are in danger.

Drivers do everything to avoid privately owned toll roads.

The toll roads are kept in tip top condition. Bridges replaced. Everything done. After all, a money maker for the private corporation.

Trump has pushed privatization to defray the cost redoing our infrastructure. Don’t even consider it. Fight the concept. A pig in a poke. A toll too far.

Tie the cost of a gallon of gasoline to the toll and it is easy to understand why Paris is burning.

Last night, the French government announced the tax increase would not go into effect. As one French leader said, “No tax deserves to endanger the unity of a Nation.”

Busy yesterday.

Sandy’s for a leisurely lunch. Read the newspapers.  Then to Publix. I keep forgetting to buy shaving cream. Beard was cropping up again.

A manicure at 5 with Tammy. Slow day for her business. She says most mondays are lately.

Followed the manicure with a trip to Aqua for Dueling Bartenders. Rick Dery’s guest Bobby Nesbitt. A huge crowd. Great singing. Bobby opened with White Christmas. Put everyone in the mood.

Met Jean Thornton. We were scheduled to have a drink together. She left me at 7 to meet Haywood at Michael’s for dinner.

Mary showed up before Jean left. Then Lynda and Bob Frechette. Linda, too.

Mary and I had dinner afterwards at La Trattoria. I let Mary order. Don’t ask me why. The pasta was HOT! My esophagus burned all night!

Morgan appeared. A hug and kiss and a chat. Another hug and kiss as I was leaving.

Morgan absolutely impresses me. A beauty! Intelligent! Only 27 years old. She has a Masters in geography. Works with the government or one of its contractors at the Navy base.

The hurricane season technically ends November 30. Key West has a ceremony to commemorate the event. The burning of the hurricane flag. The ceremony was yesterday afternoon at the Waterfront Park.

I did not attend. Jean and Frank Holden did. Jean became irritated. Properly so. The beautiful large expanse of green grass that makes up the Waterfront Park was a mess. Uprooted in parts, sand thrown here and there.

The power boat race people by contract were permitted to use the area. They are required by contract to repair and replace any areas damaged. Apparently have failed or not gotten to it this year.

Jean is on Facebook this morning complaining about the situation and showing pictures of the grounds. She will goose the power boat people into performing. Don’t mess with Jean.

Syracuse/Northeastern tonight at 7. Syracuse 5-2, Northeastern 4-4. Too early in the season to project who will win.

I will be watching the game from home. My podcast follows the game at 9. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. A fast moving hard hitting half hour. I vent. Get excited about the good and bad in things. Join me. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Harry Truman loved Key West and Key West loves Harry Truman. I repeat the statement often.

Which brings to mind another Truman story.

Truman had poor eyesight. Not blind as a bat, but close too it. It was 1905. He wanted to join the Missouri National Guard. Battery “B.” He knew he could not pass the eye test.

Missouri ingenuity came into play. Truman memorized the eye chart. Passed the physical with no problem. He became a private in the Light Artillery of Battery “B.” Served as a Captain during World War I. Retired from the Reserves 37 years after entering as a Colonel.

America is in mourning. President George H. W. Bush is dead.

Yesterday was emotionally heavy. The various activities shown on TV. Impossible not to shed a tear here and there. As they will be today and tomorrow.

Bush will be respected for the ages. What a man! What a President! Bush the personification of each.

Trump will never be. Character and virtue are required.

Enjoy your day!

 

GROCERY SHOPPING WITH THE BLIND

A unique experience yesterday. I took Terri grocery shopping. Donna was ill and asked me to step in.

It was the blind leading the blind.

I shop at the new Publix. Know where everything is. Terri shops at the old Publix. I knew where nothing was. Everything in a different place from the other store.

The experience began with the drive. I was on Whitehead approaching Truman. She said, “Take a left on Truman.” How did she know Truman was ahead?

When we arrived at Publix, she explained the game plan. We were to enter on the right side of the store. Get a cart immediately. She would drive. I was to lightly pull from the front to control direction.

We started on the right side of the store. Needed bacon. She got me to it.

So far, I was comfortable. Not bad. Then it began. Go 2 aisles right. Take a left. Half way down on the right. Top shelf. Box or can colored such and such. Brand name provided.

And so it went.

Occasionally, I took the wrong item off the shelf. She was able to tell by the size of a can if I did wrong. The size not being that much different from that which she wanted.

She directed. I followed. I was proud of myself. I did good.

She wanted me to go one way, I went another. I saw one of the items on her grocery list 2 aisles in the opposite direction from where she wanted me to go.

Blew it for her! Totally discombobulated! She was lost! Not panicked. Merely said to me, “You did wrong. I do not know where I am.”

I righted the wrong and we were on our way again.

I was impressed. She knew where most things were. The side of the aisle as well as shelf. Occasionally, she would tell me she was staying where she was with the cart. The Deli area an example. Too crowded for her. Gave me walking orders and off I went.

Checking out interesting. She can empty a cart, though I did. She pays with a credit card, not a debit. Merely push it in and it registers without her doing anything else.

I was impressed! Her only inability was driving the car itself. Who knows, some day.

Intended to go out last night and watch the Syracuse/Cornell game. Too tired. The shopping trip had tired me out!

Remained home and watched Syracuse beat Cornell 63-55. Cornell was winning by one point with 5 minutes to go. An unimpressive Syracuse game against a lesser opponent.

The nice thing was that Boeheim’s 2 sons were playing. On opposite sides. One for Syracuse, the other Cornell. Neither embarrassed themselves nor their father.

Driving down a street this time of the year in Utica and Key West the same. With one difference. Utica has snow. Otherwise, Key West homes are decorated as those up north. Christmas spirit exists regardless of location. The Key West homes I have seen absolutely beautiful. Obvious that a lot of thought and work were involved.

George H. W. Bush a frequent visitor to the keys. Primarily, Islamorada area. The President an avid fisherman.

Generally stayed at Cheeka Lodge.

Visited before, during and following his Presidency.

His biggest fishing experience involved landing a 135 foot tarpon. The largest game fish he ever caught. Bush was 84 at the time. Took him only 45 minutes to land the giant fish.

Bush used a live crab for bait. Afterwards he said, “It was a thrill of a lifetime…..A great fighting fish was finally baited.”

Bush’s character, sensitivity, caring, etc. coming out from every source. Things we did not know about him. I share two I came across.

In the 1950’s, the Bush’s lost their daughter Robin to leukemia. She was 2 at the time. Bush wrote a letter to his mother following Robin’s death…..”We need a legitimate Christmas angel, one who doesn’t have cuffs beneath her dress. You have to be a father to know this,” he wrote. “We need a little one who can kiss without leaving egg or jam or gum. We need a girl. We had one once…..But she is still with us. We need her yet we have her.”

In 2013, Bush shaved his head in solidarity with 2 year old Patrick, the son of one of the agents on his Secret Service detail who was being treated for leukemia and had lost all his hair. He was that type man.

Another nature disaster. The Alaskan earthquake friday in the Anchorage area. A big one. One 7.0 in magnitude.

Trump immediately responded. Issued an emergency declaration making it possible for the Department of Homeland Security and FEMA to act.

Trump told the people of Alaska, “Your federal government will spare no expense.”

Trump will fail Alaska as he failed Puerto Rico, Florida, northern Florida, and the California fire areas.

There is not enough money! It was more than color in Puerto Rico. Not enough money. Florida still owed billions to reimburse and /or complete rebuilding following Irma. No one hears about Florida’s Panhandle. Michael destroyed most areas hit. One city totally obliterated. We hear nothing about how great FEMA is doing in the Panhandle because it is not doing enough. California desperately waits dollars rather than criticism. Trump should sweep out the swamp people in his cabinet rather than recommend the forest grounds in California be swept.

He will fail Alaska also. His administration has misused, misallocated, and I don’t know what else, funds for natural disaster relief.

Talk is cheap. Put money where your mouth is, Mr. President. Our country needs you.

Enough for today.

Enjoy your Sunday!

 

JEAN THORNTON RETURNS

A crowd of 200 was waiting at the Key West Airport last night. Waiting for Jean Thornton who was arriving on the Delta flight out of Atlanta.

The crowd yelled and screamed as she descended the plane’s steps. Soon she was hoisted on some burly shoulders and carried into the airport.

Jean is one of the most popular and loved persons in Key West. The Golden Girl. Found gold coins and emeralds when diving with Mel Fisher many years ago. Changed her life!

She was my benefactor also. When escaping Irma, I stayed at her home in Birmingham for 12 days.

Her airport reception is fantasy. Created by me. Everything else true. Thought she was deserving of such a reception. A figment of my imagination.

Welcome back, Jean!

I learn more about Captain Tony each day. His daughter Toni a huge help in acquainting me with him.

Tony had an electric car. Made it himself. Piece by piece, part by part. Inside and out. The car tiny. Maximum speed 3 mph.

There was an airbrush painter by the name of Bill Miller in town for years. A friend Of Captain Tony’s. He painted Tony’s face on the side of the car. Took up half of one side. Painted all kinds of other things on the rest of the car.

Tony had an old Lincoln. Airbrushed by Miller, also.

Tony drove around in the Lincoln with his goat Ruff. Ruff meaaahhhing along the way.

Cape Air is a small regional airliner that had been serving Key West for years. Their planes colorfully painted. One had Tony’s face covering better than half of one side.

A cruise back in time to the 1940s. Next wednesday. A preservation fundraiser for the Custom House. KWAHS has gone all out putting the event together.

Cocktails on the veranda of the Custom House first. Then a walk next door to Magaritaville’s Grand Ballroom. The Ballroom will have been transformed into a luxury cruise liner.

Recommended attire 1940s.

The weather outside is frightful…..No snow. But cold! Last night 63 degrees. At moment 64. High supposedly will reach 70 today. Normalcy returns tomorrow when the temperature will be in the low 80s.

The game plan last night was for me to go to Jack Flatt to watch Syracuse/Ohio State at 7. I laid down around 3:30 for a nap. Woke a little after 6. Too late for Jack Flat. Needed to shave, shower, dress, drive into town, etc.

Stayed home and watched the game.

Syracuse played its best game of the season. Its only good game. Beat Ohio State 72-62.

Ohio State undefeated prior to the game at 6-0. Syracuse 3-2.

It all came together for Syracuse last night. The hit on 3s, played great defense. Boeheim mixed his players up. May have hit on the right combination.

An on the road upset win.

My faith has been restored!

Manafort’s duplicity may save his ass with a Trump pardon. It will not help his attorneys or Trump’s attorneys. Their participation in the scheme borders on the criminal. Ethically, they are over the line. Could cost them their licenses.

Trump leaves today for the G 20 meeting in Argentina. He has a meeting scheduled with his “friend” Putin. The two will leave the meeting arm in arm. Friends!

Trump should be meeting with China’s Xi. The U.S. problem with China big. Sensitive.

What makes me laugh is that Russia benefits every time the U.S. and China conflict. For example, Russia is selling soybeans to China.

In 2 years, Trump has pushed Russia and China closer and closer. They have become bedfellows economically. Lets hope it does not happen militarily.

A big day in history. November 29, 1947. It was on this day 71 years ago that the UN voted for partition of Palestine and the creation of an independent Jewish state.

Conflict ever since. Peace seems impossible. Could be another 71 years and the Jews and Palestinians will still be warring.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

STRANGE THINGS HAPPENING IN HOUSTON

Strange things happening in Houston.

Sunday evening, something went wrong with a Bank of America ATM. It distributed $100 bills instead of $20’s.

Word spread and soon everyone began walking away with $100 bills. Total amount not yet determined.

Bank of America is investigating to determine if a crime was committed by those who walked away with $100 bills. Typical Bank of America. A banking whore first class.

Recall Bank of America experienced the largest number of mortgage defaults as a result of 2008. Showed no mercy. Foreclosed, foreclosed, foreclosed! They can afford to take a hit/loss in this instance. How bad can it be? An ATM only carries a certain number of each denomination.

There was a book and then movie years ago. Each titled Sex and the Single Girl. Houston recently experienced Sex and the Kinky Dolls.

Prostitution is illegal in Houston. No brothels.

A Toronto based company KinkySdollsS (that is how it is spelled) planned to open a Houston location where customers could buy “adult love dolls” and rent them to others for use in private rooms.

The Houston Council said no. Ok to sell. However the dolls could not be used for sexual activity on the premises.

Houston Council no fun.

KinkySdollsS may sue.

Spent yesterday afternoon working on last night’s podcast. Tuesday Talk with Key  West Lou. An all Trump half hour.

Show went well. Topics moved smoothly. One blending into the next.

The topic I enjoyed doing the most involved the Ukraine/Russia situation. Appears to me that Russia is overreaching once again.

Putin does not agree. Claims the confrontation Ukraine President Poroskenko’s fault. He is running for President again next year and arranged the confrontation to boost his image.

Would you expect less of Putin?

My concern is the possibility of World War III.  Laugh not. Whose side would we be on. I think we are obligated by treaty to assist the Ukraine.

Trump may not like that.

Trump and Putin will meet in the G 20 in South America later this week. I can see it now. Trump will ask Putin if he started the row. Putin will say the Ukraine did. Trump will tell us he believes Putin. Guaranteed.

Tonight, Syracuse/Ohio State at 7. Present plan is to watch the game at Jack Flatt and have dinner at the same time.

Ohio State ranked #16. Syracuse unranked. Ohio State a 5 point favorite.

Some occurrences hard to believe. Good people going bad.

Raimundo Atesiano was recently sentenced to 3 years in jail. At the time of his crime, he was the Police Chief of Biscayne, Florida. A community of 3,000.

He directed his police officers to frame innocent men in a series of unsolved burglaries. Three black men were framed.

The Chief did so for 2 reasons. First, to please white community leaders. Second, to manipulate property claim statistics.

Leaves a person with an uncomfortable feeling. We have become accustomed to officers themselves committing crimes. But A Police Chief?

A Police Chief makes sense. If a President of 330 million can be suspected of crimes, why not a Police Chief of 3,000.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

FIRST COLD SPELL TONIGHT

I can see those in the cold areas of the country smiling already. Yes, it will be cold in Key West for the next 2 days beginning tonight. I will be cold. I am complaining.

Today’s temperature 80 degrees. Tonight, it will drop to 64. I will have the heat on.

Tomorrow, 69 by date and 63 in the evening.

Then a return to normalcy. Eighty degree weather

Yesterday proved my body is finally back to normal. Ran a few errands by day. Last night out.

Aqua first for Dueling Bartenders. Not “dueling” for a while. Tom Luna on a 6 month sabbatical. Rick Dery ran the show alone. Spectacular! However had to be tired at the end. He sang every song!

My dear friend Liz at the bar. Liz is waning. Hurts. I like her so much. Wish I had met her 15-20 years ago. My friend who was Dean of 2 law schools. I chatted with her a while. Each word she spoke took effort.

Josefina, Linda and Mary singing along with everyone else.

Afterwards, Mary and I had dinner at the bar at La Trattoria. Where I really put my body to the test.

I had limited myself to 2 drinks at Aqua. Enjoyed a third at La Trattoria. And a plate of lasagna. Oh, what a night it was!

Sat next to Dink Bruce. Dink a Key West legend. Everyone likes Dink. That kind of guy.

Dink and some of Hemingway’s artifacts, writings, etc. related.

Dink’s father Toby Bruce. He and Hemingway tight. Together every day.

When Hemingway died, he left behind a pile of boxes in Sloppy Joe’s back room. Hemingway’s fourth wife Mary Welsh Hemingway visited to go through the boxes. She took with her what she thought valuable. Gave the rest to Toby and his wife Betty.

No one bothered to categorize the contents of the boxes till 15 years ago. Most importantly, Hemingway’s first writing. One he did at the age of 10. Other items included additional writings, photos, notes, pieces of his hair, and prints.

Bruce and Betty long gone. Contents now the property of their son Dink.

Dink told me last night Penn State is interested in the contents. He is in negotiations at the present time with Penn State.

Love tuesday nights! My podcast show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Join me at 9 for a fast moving half hour of me venting and raving about things. Fun to do! Guaranteed you will enjoy. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

I slammed Trump hard yesterday for the use of tear gas at the border. Wrong place, wrong time for such an horrendous act.

Blame has to be spread. Obama’s use of tear gas at the border makes Trump look like an angel.

I was not aware of Obama’s use yesterday when I wrote.

Obama used the same type tear gas frequently. Twenty six times in 2012, 27 times in 2013. Then its usage dropped off. In 2016, only 3 times.

Obama authorized pepper spray on occasion, also.

The Trump administration has come up with another bright idea. Credit scores to be used to determine who may become a citizen. Anyone with poor scores would be ineligible.

The purpose is to prevent immigrants from becoming a burden on the welfare system.

Makes me wonder how my family would have fared under such a rule.

My people came from Italy between 1900 and 1915. Peasants. Third class steerage. Not a pot to piss in, as the saying goes.

This first group worked hard. Most succeeded in living a step above the poverty level.

My mother a most interesting story. She came over as a child. Lived in New York City. Her father had a stroke. She had to leave school while in the third grade to work 14 hours a day in a shoe factory.

They all became citizens. Their children became the stars. Only because of the stringent upbringing which pushed them to do better.

None would have become citizens if the credit score rule were in effect. What would have happened to me and my many cousins?Would we have been able to become the successful professional and business people we did?

Trump campaigned big time on the representation he would bring jobs back. He has done a poor job so far.

It was announced yesterday that General Motors would be getting rid of 14,000 jobs and closing 5 plants. A winner, Mr. President!

Recall he also promised that coal plants would return. Where?

Aluminum companies, also. Good luck!

And then there is the farming industry. Totally mucked up because of the tariff wars. Soybeans, wheat and corn hit especially hard. Soybean sales down 94 percent this year.

Then there is the stock market. Down 2,500 points since early October. Erratic. Up and down hundreds of points each week. If it drops another 2,500 point, we will be in a recession big time.

I believe a recession possible. Between now and late spring. The world is too turbulent.

And so on.

Enjoy your day!

 

CONGRATULATIONS MR. PRESIDENT, YOU DID IT AGAIN…..CHILDREN BAREFOOT, IN DIAPERS, CHOKING ON TEAR GAS

First, it was ripping babies from their mothers’ arms. Now, tear gassing children barefooted and diapered.

You are a big man Mr. President. A bully.

Next bullets fired and immigrant parents and children killed and wounded?

What could be expected of a people who have walked 2,000 miles in hope of gaining admission to the U.S. The beaming light at the top of the hill is growing dim.

If I had walked 2,000 miles, I would have run up the hill trying to get into the U.S. as were the asylum seekers. Persons having every right to enter the U.S., be interviewed by a Judge to determine if they might be eligible for asylum status, and then given a date to return.

In the meantime, you are trying to “buy” Mexico to help with “our” problem. The money being offered will have to be gigantic to bribe the new Mexican officials to go along with any arrangement.

The backlog of asylum cases is estimated at 1 million with a projected time of 2 years to be heard. You and your predecessors should have appointed more Judges years ago to work the problem.

One more thing my President, you are solely responsible for the critical situation now existing at the border. You have created it with your thrusting fear into the hearts of some Americans about the bad immigrants on their way to hurt us. A falsehood you well knew and continue to know.

You did the same thing with Kim Jung Un. Got into a pissing match with him. Names exchanged. War possible. Suppose Kim decided to drop a nuclear device on South Korea or the U.S. instead of meeting with you? It was possible. Hundreds of thousands dead because of your ill equipped mind.

People are going to continue trying to cross the border till you come up with a better solution. One to help, not hurt them.

Barbra Strunk reads this blog. Has so for some time. Never met her.

She is a stalwart Trump supporter. We are on opposite ends of the spectrum. Adamant in her feelings. I can sense it when she responds to something negative I might have said about him. She hits hard!

There are times when Barbra will write a pleasant  friendly e-mail re my health or some other thing. Such messages are sweet. Gives one the sense Barbra is a nice person.

Barbra lives somewhere in north Florida. Spoke with her for the first time sunday morning. She is visiting Key West. Stopped at Hard Rock to hear Terri sing. She and Donna began talking. All of a sudden, Donna had Barbra on the phone with me.

What a nice person!

Barbra is here till friday. Hope we get together before she leaves.

Beard or no beard? Should have run a contest as to whether I would shave. Received about 20 comments. Equally divided. Male and female. Leave it on, take it off.

I took it off. Decided I looked homeless with it on. That and the weight loss. Decided I did not want to go another week developing it.

Out last night for the first time in a week. Planned on hitting all my favorite spots. It was the Chart Room first. John bartending.

John put a Beefeater on the rocks in front of me. I lit up a cigarette. The first for both in a week. Could not handle either. Two sips of the gin and 2 drags on the cigarette. Neither tasted right. Instead a diet Coke.

Left soon after. I was having no fun. Did not feel right. Probably because I have not physically moved my body for a week. I have to walk a bit today.

The Key West Cemetery is an interesting place. A lot of odd ball tombstones. Perhaps ghosts. I am not sure.

Two tombstones of particular interest.

One is the world famous headstone which reads” “I Told You I Was Sick.” Sits on the grave of B. P. “Pearl” Roberts.

The other is referred to as the Bound Woman. This one cool!

It is located as part of the grave of Archibald John Sheldon Yates. A statue of a nude woman with her hands bound behind her back. It sits at/on the head of Yates’ grave. On top of a long flat stone under which is Yates’ body.

Who is the lady and why? Part of a perverted joke by the deceased? Key West had its funky moments in his day also.

Two reasons as to who and why. Not sure which is correct.

One is that the naked bound woman represents Yates’ wife Magdalena. It is said he expressly told his son before he died that he wanted her to sit upon him for all eternity.

A problem. Uncertainty as to whether it represents his wife.

Another theory is that it represents Andromeda from Greek mythology. She was bound naked hands tied to a rock as a sacrifice to the sea monster Cetus. She was saved before the terrible event occurred.

There are a number of paintings of Andromeda as she was awaiting death. Some naked, some clothe from the waist down. Most standing tied to a rock. None similar to the supposed Andromeda sitting on Yates’ face.

My dear friend of many years Cheryl Keast sent me a FB message yesterday with an attachment. The attachment read: “Unpacked our Nativity scene yesterday. Removed all the Jews, Arabs, and foreigners. Ended up with a jackass and a handful of sheep.”

Enjoy your day!