FATHER, I CANNOT TELL A LIE…..I CUT DOWN THE CHERRY TREE

 

Our President lies.

Yesterday, I set forth Proverb 17:7 to show from a religious perspective it was wrong for a leader to lie. Today, reference is made to American history.

All of us learned about George Washington and cutting down the cherry tree. Children still learn from it.

It never happened. The story is a myth. However one that has taught most of us that people should speak the truth, not lie.

The verbiage has variations. “Father, I cannot tell a lie…..I cut down the cherry tree.” “Father, I cannot tell a lie…..I barked the cherry tree.” “Father, I cannot tell a lie…..I damaged the cherry tree.”

Mason Locke Weems was a writer. Not very successful. In 1800, he wrote a book which was followed by multiple editions. He made things up. To make his works interesting and sell.

The 1806 edition contained the cherry tree story. Weems had Washington 6 years old at the time.

Though Weems’ tale is a fabrication, it continues to teach that everyone should speak the truth. Even Trump.

Stephen Miller is an aide to Trump. His office near the President’s in the White House.

I have spoken poorly of Miller in the past. Deservedly so. He is a propagandist. I have likened him to Joseph Goebbels.

Miller took questions today at the White House before the press corps. He was pitching Trump’s new proposed immigration law. It would cut immigration in half from its present level. It would also require immigrants to speak English before they could be admitted.

CNN’s Jim Acosta asked several piercing questions about the English requirement. His father immigrated from Cuba in the 1960’s unable to speak English.Things got heated. At Miller’s end. He apparently did not like Acosta’s questions. Raised his voice. Implied Acosta was ignorant.

My grandfather came from Italy at the age of 12 in the very early 1900’s. He could not speak English. My grandmother came over later as a teenager. Sixteen. She did not speak English.

My grandparents had eight children. One died. They raised them to be good honest citizens. My grandfather worked his way up in a knitting mill to a supervisory position. His English in due course beautiful. Smooth. Articulate.

My grandmother never learned to speak English. She did not care. Her responsibility was to take care of her husband, children and home. Later, to help care for her grandchildren.

My grandmother raised me in my early years. I spoke Italian before English.

She was a loving woman. Exuded warmth. To be hugged by her was everything.

Lived every day the same way. Her husband, the young ones and her home.

She was up at 5 each morning. Made her husband’s breakfast and got him off to work. Still early. The kids not yet up.

She cleaned her whole house every morning. The kitchen always amused me. She would wrap a clothe around a broom and do the ceilings first. When she was done washing the floor and it had dried, she covered the floor with newspapers.

Neither of my grandparents would be allowed into the United States under the proposed law. I might have ended up a lawyer in Italy instead of here.

My point. They were good people, good citizens. Made their contribution. Their children and grandchildren, also.

I spent a quiet day reading. Waiting for my ankles to go down. Nothing yet.

I will be out of here early this morning. I have to take Terri to chemotherapy.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

ROOFTOP BIRTHDAY DINNER

A wonderful evening! Birthday dinner at the Rooftop as the guest of Joseph Lyles.

Joseph, the host extraordinaire. My John the Baptist friend still walking with his seven foot pole.

Joseph has had an extensive career in the food industry. Managed fine dining at places like the Hot Tin Roof and Little Palm Island.

A man held in high esteem by his restaurant cohorts. Clearly evident last night. The owner and chef stopped by the table. The table itself special. Special appetizers selected by Joseph before I arrived.

The chef recommended the snapper special. Joseph and I followed his advice. Did not go wrong.

Courtesy even to a double locals discount. I was impressed.

Joseph is a person of deep intelligence. A thinker. I enjoy his company. We have decided to do it again. Next time at Martin’s for Happy Hour.

A passing comment. I had not been to the Rooftop in at least 10 years. You hear me say this often. Ten years. Key West has many fine restaurants. Plus, I am a creature of habit. Enjoy going to the same places.

I am adding Rooftop to my list of places to frequent. I forgot how good it was.

Thank you, thank you, thank you! So many Happy Birthday greetings. I am a lucky man.

Barbara enjoyed dinner with Joseph and I last night. She left early this morning to return to New York. She was a tremendous help in getting me unpacked, etc.

We lunched together at Harpoon Harry’s yesterday. One of those sudden heavy summer rains occurred. Kept us at Harry’s an extra half hour.

Spent most of the day unpacking. More to go, though not much.

I have been in Key West many years. I feel like I am a part of Key West. The feeling is accompanied with an attitude that I know everything about my island.

I do not. As I frequently learn.

The wall behind the bar at the Chart Room is loaded with photos. Some covering each other.

The other evening, I discovered one of Mel Fisher and Johnny Carson.

Fisher found the Atocha and gold in July 1985. Like $400 million worth. Within days, he was on the Johnny Carson show. July 30, 1985 to be exact.

Soon thereafter, Carson traveled to Key West. He wanted to dive the Atocha. Fisher took him.

Fisher also took him to the Chart Room where the photograph was taken.

In depth knowledge of William Hackley is a bit at a time. On this date in 1856, Hackley wrote in his diary that he received a letter from his mother. Enclosed in the letter was his “quarterly salary.”

Leads me to believe Hackley might have been a trust fund baby.

Hoover Dam…..One of the wonders of the world! Definitely so at the time of its completion in 1935.

Time and other construction has diminished its number one position as the largest of dams. Today, Hoover Dam is the 2nd highest in the United States and 18th largest in the world.

I write about Hoover Dam for several reasons today.

One is that construction began this day in 1930.

Others include the dam being finished two years ahead of schedule and millions of dollars under budget. A feat impossible in today’s world.

Interesting to note is 21,000 men worked on the dam during its 5 year construction period. Jobs for many during the great depression.

Enjoy your day!

THIS DAY IN HISTORY

This day in history…..I was born! July 6, 1935.

I am 82 years old today. Wow! My father made it to 98. His father 94. My father’s sister Mary 102.

I of course have no recollection of the day of my birth. All I know is what my mother told me. It was hot and humid. No air conditioning in 1935. She was in labor 23 hours.

She was not a happy camper about the 23 hours. Her comments always concluded with…..You were worth it!

A mother’s love.

Stopped by my former home yesterday. Wanted to get the garbage containers off the street. Found a note on the front door: Pipe broke. Boil water from 6/29-7/2.

I left 6/29. Apparently before the pipe broke. A tragedy avoided.

Still unpacking boxes. Hope to finish today. My back is killing me.

Jimmy and Johnny stopped over in the afternoon. Not to welcome me to the neighborhood. I am having the inside of the house painted. They will start in about three weeks.

Chart Room last night.

A touchy evening.

Political chatter.

Met a 60ish gentleman from Indiana. Lives in Mike Pence’s district. Knows Mike Pence. Unhappy with the way the Dems are treating Trump. Thought the Republicans gave Obama a free ride and Trump was entitled to the same.

He was getting excited. I was calm. John said, no politics.

I was at the other end of the bar. He came over about 10 minutes later and we talked about non-political things for about 15 minutes. Nice of him.

Another fellow was seated next to me. His first time in Key West. Been here a few days. Staying till sunday. His goal is to have a beer in as many bars as possible. The Chart Room was #23.

Old movie houses. Key West has one. To this day. Though not a movie theater today. A Walgreens. The movie theater outside facade remains.

The movie house was called the Strand Theater. Opened in mid Duval in the early 1920’s. Seated over 800. Initially showed silent films. Then talkies.

The Strand was destroyed by fire on this date in 1934. Rebuilt and reopened as the Strand. Closed in the 1980’s. Theater attendance was falling.

Various businesses operated out of the Strand. For several years, it was a big time gay bar. Went only once. When I was relatively new to Key West and unaccustomed to certain of its nuances. A midnight show: A  Black Mass. My deviate mind compelled my attendance.

I was sitting on a ledge waiting for the show to begin. The place packed. All genders, all sexual preferences. Two men dressed as nuns came by. One said he/she would like to hold my nuts. His palm opened. He held two peanuts.

I was out the door.

Ripley’s is now in the 100 block of Duval. From 1993-2002, it operated in the Strand. Ripley’s Believe It or Not Odditorium.

Today, the majestic theater of old a small crowded Walgreens.

I consider Forrest Gump an outstanding movie. Forrest Gump opened this day in 1994. Starred Tom Hanks.

My day will consist of  more box openings and then dinner tonight at Rooftop. Friend Joseph is taking me out to dinner for my birthday.

Enjoy your day!

 

ELENA…..YOU’RE HAVING A BAD HAIR DAY

The Count Carl von Cosel / Elena Milagro Hoyos tale is a story following Elena’s death in the 1930s. The Count was a Key West U.S. Marine  Hospital staff member. Elena a patient.

The Count loved Elena.

Elena died. Tuberculosis.

Two years later, the Count removed her body from its tomb and relocated it to his home. There she remained for several years in his bed. He cared for her. Did his best to keep her decomposing body attractive.

The title of today’s blog a tongue in cheek one: ELENA, YOU’RE HAVING A BAD HAIR DAY.

The Studios of Key West is presenting a musical based on the love story. March 2 and 3.

Should be interesting.

Spent my yesterday in the hospital. Liz had hip replacement surgery in the morning. The day spent helping her through the anesthesia withdrawal. Seemed to take forever. Not easy for her.

I was exhausted when I returned home in the evening. To bed and sleep immediately.

Syracuse/Miami at noon on ESPN. Miami a 2.5 point favorite.

I spent some time this morning talking to various hospital personnel. I want to watch the game and be with Liz at the same time. The hospital personnel probably thought I was nuts. I wanted to know if the TV sets in the rooms carried ESPN.

No one knew.

Sons and Daughters of Italy meeting tonight. Should be interesting and fun. I am in the mood to imbibe a bit.

Walgreens. Today a Walgreens in Key West. Part of one of the largest drug chains in the U.S. In the year 2017.

Charles R. Walgreen was the owner of the drug chain bearing his name in 1938. He visited Key West on this date on his 98 foot yacht Virago.

Drug stores obviously big business even back in the depression days of 1938!

An important day in Russian history! An important day in world history! The Russian Revolution began this date in 1917. People hungry. Wanted bread.

Ninety thousand demonstrators hit the streets in Petrograd. One week later, Czar Nicholas II abdicated.

A communist nation around the corner.

Many books written. Movies, also. Two of the best War and Peace and Dr. Zhivago.

The Wall St. Journal made comment in a Monday story which made me feel we sometime live in a banana republic. The column stated: “The conservative media outlet Breitbart published an article Friday based on the allegations of a right-wing radio host that intelligence agencies were conducting a ‘silent coup’ against Mr. Trump.”

Crazies in and out of the Trump White House.

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

 

WORLD AIDS DAY

Today is World AIDS Day. Especially important in Key West. Too many lost over the years.

This morning’s Key West Citizen has an excellent front page article re this day.

At 4:30 this afternoon, the Candlelight Walk. Then at 6, the annual recollection ceremony. At the Edward B. Knight Pier. To remember loved ones lost to the disease.

The article notes an increase in HIV and AIDS cases in the past nine months. From 4 to 21. Sounds alarming. I doubt it is.

A new State law comes into play. This year the first for its imposition. The new law mandates HIV and AIDS testing as part of all annual physicals. Except where the patient opts out.

Increased testing means more positive results. Inevitable.

I completed my Key West Rotary history yesterday. Twenty six separate installments. Interesting to do. Onerous on occasion. Some days added as much as two hours additional work. A pleasure, never the less.

Martin’s for Happy Hour yesterday. With friend Joseph.

Joseph down to one cane. Big progress! He anticipates that soon there will be no need for a cane.

Conversation excellent. Joseph wants to do a blog. Needs to fill in his time now that he is retired. I told him I would have Sloan help him set up. I sense Joseph’s blog will be an intellectual one. Philosophical.

Martin’s food continues to be outstanding. I enjoyed small lamb chops and baked brie. Joseph, snails and schnitzle strips.

Magic bartending. From Poland. Many Poles have immigrated and settled in Key West. My Italian ancestors in the cold northeast many years ago. Weatherwise, the Poles selected better. Warm weather year round as opposed to biting cold winters.

Next stop, Don’s Place.

Chatted with Don and David.

Joanie is back. For the winter. Good to see her!

Quick stops on the way home at Walgreens and Publix.

Tonight, a manicure with Tammy at 7. Followed by dinner at 8 at Outback.

William Hackley writes that on this date in 1855, he paid William C. Dennis “for the hire of a negro woman.”

This Hackley has done in the past. Diana Millikan an historian of sorts. She believes one of the negro woman’s duties was washing Hackley during his morning baths. She believes it was a slave’s customary duty to be performed for her master. I told her to find authority for it somewhere. She is still looking.

The hurricane season ended yesterday. Hope hurricanes are aware that Key West should experience no further ones this year as November 30 has come and gone.

You can never be sure. I recall several years ago when October 31 was the end of hurricane season. We got hit by one the first week of November.

A big saturday awaits! The Christmas Parade. At 7 on Truman. Always fun. Especially for the kids. Tons of candy thrown from parade floats.

Enjoy your day!

 

KEY WEST HOSPITAL EXPERIENCE

I experienced a hospital day yesterday. At the Lower Keys Medical Center. Because of recent furor, I paid attention to everything.

Staff polite. Courteous. Apologetic when required. Exhibited concern.

The problem was service.

It took 25 minutes for me to get through Admissions. I was taken on time. To process me, took too much time. The computer would not print. Improper numbered form used by doctor.

The admissions person had a cold. Sneezing and spreading germs. I did not use the pen she handed me. Used my own. I was germ conscious.

I was supposed to have a CAT scan. Never happened. I have an intravenous dye allergy. Hospital and doctor’s records reflect same. No one was aware of it till the last minute. I needed a special pill to be taken over a 13 hour period prior to the scan. Which meant, no Cat scan yesterday.

Almost two hours my time AND the hospital’s wasted.

Scan rescheduled for tomorrow morning.

The three pills turned out to be a problem. Neither doctor nor hospital responsible. Walgreens the culprit.

I received a Walgreens recorded telephone message. Insurance company says no insurance…..check with my new company. Crazy. I have no new insurance company. The same one for ten years. I pay for the drug coverage a year at a time. Not due till January.

Called my doctor’s office to work the problem out.

A Walgreen screw up. They processed the prescription twice. The second apparently cancelled the first. The second however befuddled the insurance company’s computer causing the no insurance response.

There is humor to this. The pills cost $ .94. The screw up resulting in wasted time for the insurance company, my doctor’s office and Walgreens. For me, aggravation.

I am scheduled later this morning for a leg blood clot test and something else at the doctor’s office.

Terri in the hospital with all kinds of problems. Kidneys the worse. Stopped in to see her. Donna was there. As expected. Spent the night sleeping on a chair next to Terri’s bed.

Terri looked better than Donna. Terri is on the mend. A couple more days.

Aqua last night for Dueling Bartenders. I was looking forward to a couple of drinks.

Beatrix Dixie only performer dressed. Looked good, sang better. Tom and Rick not dressed. Sang well also.

Met Buzz at the bar. Another senior citizen. Originally from Oregon. Been a Key Wester for years. Lives in Truman Annex.

A new friend.

Dan and Betty, where were you? I thought you would be stopping in.

Since saturday, three different locals have mentioned a concern. A serious one from their perspective. A fear of something bad occurring during Fantasy Fest. They have a feeling.

Jenna has a model’s body. Not even a size 1. A zero.

She runs 5-7 miles most days. Works out at a gym 3 days a week.

She recently became a marathon runner. Short ones. Three-five miles. She has run two in the past three weeks. Came in first in each in the women’s division. Third overall in the first.

One of today’s Fantasy Fest events is this afternoon. The Beach Bash. At South Beach. A band. Persons attending have been asked to dress for the beach as people did when the Twist was popular. Except for bikinis, attire would be the same as today. No thong bottoms back then.

I remember when the Twist came out. An immediate hit. I recall the first time I danced it. At a Xmas office party. It was easy to do. The instructions simple. Do as you would do if you were drying your butt with a towel.

I could be wrong. I believe the Twist was the first modern day dance where people did not dance close to each other, touch.

My podcast tonight. Nine this evening. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Have about three hours more prep to do. Show will be interesting and in some instances revealing. Join me for a fast paced half hour. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Several years ago, I wrote a KONK Life column titled The Charge of the Light Brigade. Alfred Lord Tennyson’s exciting poem re the fight between the Brits and Russians during the Crimean War at the Battle of Balaclava.

It comes to mind today. On this day in 1854, the battle giving rise to the poem was fought.

Certain lines memorable. Excite me whenever I hear or read them.

“Theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do and die. Into the valley of Death rode the six hundred.”

Enjoy your day!

 

 

 

 

THE DEBATE

Key Westers are politically conscious. They have opinions re Trump and Hillary. Key Westers do not just lie on a  beach drinking margaritas and hitting the bars at night. The election is a much discussed event every day in the Chart Room, Don’s Place, La Te Da, and everywhere else.

Last night’s debate will not change many minds. People are fixed rigidly in this election. The two sides are like Congress. Adamant. The election will be decided by the five percent undecided and/or who have decided to vote for Johnson. In the end, a number of Johnson intended votes will go over to Hillary.

Hillary bested Trump last night. I give her a B and Trump a D-. The D- a gift. Except for trade, Trump made no impact. He evidenced no understanding of government or world problems. His incompetence for the position of President was obvious. He was a mega flop.

Hillary was prepared and sounded Presidential.

Yesterday was a run around day. The bank. Then Walgreens. Followed by the Cuban Coffee Queen for lunch.

Then a 100 foot walk to what is to be Cuzza Bubbaz. A Key West flavored sandwich shop. Opening scheduled for October 10. Jay O’Neill owner and chef.

Cuzza Bubbaz is on Southard next to Bank of America. At the entrance to the Key Lime corridor.

Jay has been a bocce friend for years. He was chef at Sq. 1 and Solo American Bistro. A chef who takes pride in his product. His sandwiches will be a step above and better than others.

Met with Guy de Boer last night for a couple of drinks at Tavern ‘n Town. Even on a monday night, the bar is packed. Ran into my neighbors Ed and Nancy Swift. Also, original Square One friends. This goes back 20 plus years. Then owner Michael and his sometimes hostess Jean. Two great people.

Stay with me on this one. America is not named after Amerigo Vespucci. He never even landed in North America. His stops were in Brazil and islands offshore.

Vespucci is claimed to have made four trips. Historians doubt the first ever happened.

America is named after Richard Ameryk. Ameryk was the patron/financier for John Cabot’s trips. Cabot’s chief investor. Cabot reached Labrador in May 1497, two years before Vespucci landed in South America for the first time.

Correct historical fact tells us two things.

First, Vespucci never reached North America, nor any America before Cabot. Second, back in the 1400’s newly discovered countries and continents were named after the financier/patron of the exploration. The last name was used. Never the first. Ergo, most historians believe America was named after Richard Ameryk.

This is the second time in a month I have come across a mistaken historical fact. I was taught America was named after Amerigo Vespucci in grammar school. How do these things happen?

Tonight my blog talk radio show. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. If you have never heard the show, join me. A fast moving half hour packed with my opinions re the events discussed. Nine my time. www.blogtalkradio.com/key-west-lou.

Topics that will be discussed include the debate of course, John Boehner cashing out, why environmental damage caused by war is never discussed, the bumble bee in trouble, and guns sell out after Charlotte shooting.

Also, Pentagon admits black U.S. soldiers were used for scientific/medical test purposes during World War II, the fear self-driving trucks will result in the layoff of many from good paying jobs, FBI Director James Coomey’s percieved involvement with the Clinton Foundation, and more.

Enjoy your day!

 

SOME KEY WEST HISTORY

Big trees from little acorns grow…..

The Pier House Motel opened this date in 1968. Fifty units. From that modest beginning, the Pier House of today grew. Key West’s premier hotel.

My friend from physiotherapy David Wolkowsky responsible. The 50 unit motel was his brain child. The hotel’s growth guided by his hand.

David is 96. God bless him!

David has been responsible for more than merely the growth of the Pier House. Key West is his baby! He made it what it is today.

Mom’s Tea Room was once a popular place. Always busy. A man’s place. A whore house, house of ill repute, bordello. It is no more.

On this date in 1941, Mom’s Tea Room was raided. Three prostitutes arrested.

Not Mom’s first raid/arrest. The U.S. Navy a thorn in her side. Weighed on local government to close down the place. The Navy believed the place was not healthy for its men.

This is not the first time this blog has reported on Mom’s Tea Room. Twice before. April 9, 2015 and February 8, 2016. More detail in each writing. The blogs are archived on www.keywestlou.com. Right hand side of page, scroll down. Find month and year. Click on. Find date.

The owner of Mom’s Tea Room was Rose Rabin. She ran three places over the years. One off and on Stock Island through 1953. Another on Truman Avenue before World war II. The third a post World War II place known as the Imperial Club. The Navy was on her ass re all her clubs.

Whore houses are a thing of the past. Today are primarily escort services and gentlemen’s clubs (strip clubs). Services the same. Merely obtained via a different method.

Walked Home Depot yesterday. Only 15 minutes and at a slow pace. Exhausted afterwards. Concerns me.

While walking, I heard from Dee. She was calling from somewhere in Michigan.

Dee worked 30 years for AIDS-Help here in Key West. Her boss during those years died this week. She was in Michigan to attend his services. She is scheduled as one of the speakers.

Dee was a wreck. Crying. Understandable.

Stopped at Walgreens. To pick up Nexium generic for my acid reflux.

I am pissed at pharmaceutical houses and insurance companies. I have a drug policy through AARP. Does not pay everything. Always a co-pay. Then there is the donut.

I have been taking two Nexiums a day for years. My co-pay $40 a month. A couple of months ago, the price out of pocket for me became $174. No way! I switched to the generic. The generic costs me $41.50 a month. Slightly more than the for real pill.

Generics are supposed to be cheap.

I talked to Walgreens, the insurance company and the pharmaceutical house at the time. The insurance and pharmacy houses not nice at all. Actually impolite. Basically, the prices can be raised at any time. The judgment that of the pharmaceutical house. Take it or leave it!

F–k ’em!

Excuse my exasperation.

Back Door last night with Mark Watson. David there. Met Tim and Todd. John, who I had met before.

Tim and I talked quite a while. He manages Joe’s Chicken Shack on Duval. Another place for me to try.

Then to Outback’s for dinner. Ran into Doc. I only know him as Doc. Never have known his real name. We played golf weekly 20 years ago. I rarely see him now.

I was thrilled when he told me how much he loved my KONK Life column, reads it every week, etc. Thought I spent all week researching.

Doc made my night. It thrills me whenever someone compliments the column. I take pride in it.

The local hospital problem a real one. Will be ongoing quite a while. There will be some resolution. How much, difficult to determine.

This morning’s Key West Citizen reported the City Commission was having a meeting tonight re the issue. The Citizens’ Committee, hospital representatives and public invited.

Key West’s City Commission is inept. Typical politicians. Want the public to know they are doing something. Generally not the right thing.

Certain Commission members are prepared to sue the company that owns the hospital. I believe it not the time, if ever. A lawsuit is only going to screw things up, delay resolution, etc.

Whatever, the Commission blowhards seem committed to a lawsuit. Then the problem is off their shoulders. Let the City Attorney worry about it. Blame delays and lack of resolution on the lawsuit.

In the mean time, what about patients? Any lawsuit will delay resolution of patient problems for years.

Enjoy your day!

FRUSTRATION SELF INDUCED

I was 95 percent finished with the rough draft of this week’s KONK Life column yesterday afternoon. Mommy, I’m Hungry. About Venezuela’s starving children. All of a sudden, the screen was blank.

I must have hit a wrong key. Went to retrieve the column. Good luck!
Nowhere to be found.

Called Sloan and had her search. No luck.

Frustrated I was. No question.

It took 3 hours to draft the material lost. It would take me another 3 hours to rewrite. Then edit. Another 1.5 hours. I already had 3 hours in. No way. I did not have it in me to do. I was already tired.

So…..There will be no KONK Life column this week. Mommy, I’m Hungry will appear the following week. My apologies.

I watched the Olympics off and on yesterday. Not long. I could not get into it.

Early evening drove to Walgreens. Out of my acid reflux pills. It was 6:10. Pharmacy closed. Now closes at 6 on saturdays and sundays.

Then to Hogfish. Sat at bar. Watched some Olympic basketball. Enjoyed fish and chips. Hogfish fish and chips.

The Hackley saga for today. Mrs. Hews can no longer breast feed the baby. She is drying up. Matilda cannot. The Havana goat was dry. What to do next? Starch. Hackley reported the baby was taking to it.

Starch mixed with water is what mothers are feeding their babies in Venezuela. Makes for a full stomach. Not healthy, however.

Think how lucky we are. How far we have come. If a mother cannot breast feed, there are all kinds of baby formulas on store shelves.

This weekend’s newspapers uniformly mentioned that the FDA had approved testing for Zika in the Florida keys. The whole world may be thrilled. I am not. My message: Stay out of my back yard!

I forgot all about Battle of the Bars.

Somewhere this weekend, I came across mention of John Keats. Poet supreme! He died at the age of 25 in 1821. In Rome.

Thirty five years ago, I accidentally came across his home/the place where he died. I was walking around Rome. In the area as the Spanish Steps. The first building on one side of the Steps had a small dated bronze sign. Home of John Keats. A two or three story building.

I went inside. Walked to the top floor. Saw Keats’ bedroom. The place where he died. The rest of the floor was a museum of sorts.

Among the observable items were a number of original Keats’ works. His poems handwritten on crumbled paper. Under glass, of course.

I found the experience exciting and moving.

Big talk on TV this morning re a third party candidate with Republican dissident backing. Morning Jo said it’s for real. He received two telephone calls. The announcement supposedly will be made at noon.

During these days in 1975, Vice President Spiro Agnew came under attack. It was claimed that he accepted kick backs from contractors while Maryland governor.

He subsequently resigned.

Agnew was a hard ass. I think that is why Nixon selected him to run as Vice President. These were the days of campus unrest. Agnew frequently spoke out against the demonstrations. In tough guy fashion.

I never liked Agnew. For two reasons.

He constantly used big words. His vocabulary excellent. Much better than mine. It was as if he was trying to impress people all the time.

The other reason is that out of law school he became an Allstate Insurance adjuster. Allstate was a rotten company back then. Despicable the manner in which they ran their claims department. No respect for anything or anyone.

To this day, I think of Agnew as an Allstate adjuster rather than Vice President or crook.

New York Times columnist Frank Bruni had an interesting comment re Trump in a recent column. The thrust of the column was that the GOP was indulging Trump.

Bruni stated in his last paragraph that America “…..needs a grown-up who honors our values, not a brat who shreds them.”

Peggy Noonan wrote a column in this weekend’s Wall Street Journal re whether Trump was crazy. Her last paragraph introduced me to the word kakistocracy. Never had heard it before. From the Greek. Noonan said, “It means government by the worst persons, by the least qualified or most unprincipled.” Suggesting we might be on our way there if Trump were to be elected.

Enjoy your day!

TERRI WHITE…..ILL

Terri White experienced a heart attack tuesday while at home here in Key West. She was helicoptered to Miami’s Mount Sinai Hospital.

A catheterization. Ninety percent blockage in one artery. A stent put in.

She was sitting up in bed last night eating a hospital roast beef dinner. Complaining about the beef and the rest of the food.

Terri will be home soon. If all ok, today.

Someone was looking over her shoulder. In addition to Donna. God.

My day yesterday began withe the anti-gravity treadmill. Whereas I took it easy monday and ended up tired, yesterday I went at it. I pushed hard. It is my way. I had to test myself. Went to a high speed fast and stayed there. I was not tired afterwards. You figure.

Then to Walgreens. Always going to Walgreens. Getting old means pills. Tons of them. Not complaining. Keeps me healthy. No question about it. My heart doctor says it is the pills for me.

Even for generics, prescriptions can be expensive. I pay $40 for one and $36 for another. Both reached those dramatic levels this year.

Stopped at Verizon. Still learning my cell phone. Nana my teacher not there. Had to cover the Marathon store. Will stop by again tomorrow.

I am becoming a regular at Aqua. Twice a week.

Last night, the Back Door. Expected to see Mark Watson. Not there. On Fire Island for a few days. Tom Luna covering for him.

Chatted quite a while with Tom. First time so long. Interesting background. An interesting person. He spent much time in New York. We compared notes.

Jeremy came in. Tom introduced us. Jeremy is Aqua’s general manager. Thirty seven. Enjoyed his company. He is knowledgeable. His ability obvious.

Start of mini-lobster season busy yesterday. Much busier than I thought. Guess I was outside watching for the boats too early.

A picture in this morning’s Key West Citizen shows the boats. Bumper to bumper, so to speak.

A 60 year old man became ill while diving off Cudjoe Key yesterday. Fortunately, a Navy helicopter was nearby. Within 15 minutes, he had been airlifted to the Lower Keys Medical Center. Unfortunately, he did not survive.

A boat with four persons went out tuesday. Not diving for lobsters yet. One day early. Merely diving. Intended to go out 7-8 miles. Boat became disabled. The Coast Guard was out looking for them. They were found yesterday 33 miles out. Everyone fine.

There were a number of boats that passed by my home this morning. All heading out to dive for lobsters. Some of the boats overloaded with people. Reminded me of the scene in Jaws when everyone was going out to catch the shark.

Then it rained. At 7:45 it poured. Typical tropical storm. Heavy for 10 minutes. Big time thunder. Water picking up. Then it stopped and everything returned to normal.

I would not have wanted to be out on a boat during those 10 minutes.

William Hackley reports today that Matilda’s milk is still not good. Baby not tolerating it. Baby has been sick for three days. Coughing up green stuff.

I am beginning to worry about Baby.

My Republican, conservative, far right friends, how can you support Trump? A man who invites Russia/Putin to admit and share e-mails hacked from our private files. Trump is crazy. Putin is crazy.

Trump said he would accept Putin’s word on anything he says. Trump forgets that Putin denied for months that it was Russian troops in disguise who invaded Crimea.

Trump makes himself sound like the patriot of patriots. He is going to save America!

The 18th century writer Samuel Johnson said: “Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel.”

I have followed and been concerned with Venezuela President Nicolos Maduro for three years. Another President is added. He is President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines.

Drugs are a major problem in the Philippines. Duterte has authorized police and citizens to kill anyone on the spot who they discover using or selling drugs. He advises he will pardon anyone involved in the killings.

No due process involved. Kill them and throw them into the sea. Dtterte said the fish will get fat off their bodies.

Duterte is a nut. Like Maduro. And, Trump.  Duterte wants to retire with a reputation comparable to Idi Amin. So he says.

Ugh!

Enjoy your day!