Another lovely Key West Sunday! The morning is beautiful! As the rest of the day will be! We are blessed.
I spent yesterday sitting around writing. Primarily under the tiki hut overlooking the water. A peaceful place.
Last night was basketball! What else at this time of year? I watched at Don’s Place. With a multitude of others. Don, David, Michelle, Nickey, Boomer, Nate, Mikey, Dougie, Russ, Erica, Herschel and many others.
Butler/Florida was an excellent game. Butler goes to the Final Four for the second year in a row.
I was really into the Connecticut /Arizona game. Connecticut is the only Big East team left in the tournament. Ergo, I was rooting for UConn. I sat with Dougie and Russ watching the game. Dougie is from Hartford and Russ is a St. John graduate. We cheered UConn on. A good game. Connecticut luckly won 65-63. Great basketball!
A recent Gallup poll listed the 10 unhappiest areas in the United States. My home town was listed as #10. The Utica/Rome area.
Bob Marks is an old friend. I was best man at his wedding to the lovely Helen. Bob grew up in Utica, also. He no longer lives there nor has he for many many years. Bob made mention of the Gallup poll on Facebook this morning. That is how it came to my attention.
I always thought Utica was a great place to raise a family. It was family. My whole family was there. But that was it! Outside of family, most people were cold and distant. My friends were basically family and other Italian-Americans.
During the time I was growing up, Utica was a very waspy community. They looked down on my ethnic family. I believe that contributed greatly to a sense of not being quite happy then and remnants of the past remain to this day. The wasps are gone but the negativity they generated remains.
I often think of the contrast between Utica and Key West. People are so much different in Key West. No one cares where you came from, how much money you have or anything else. The only concern is you. Are you real. Key West is real.
Which brings me to Geraldine Ferraro. She died yesterday. Geraldine was the first female to run for Vice-President.
It was 1984 and she was asked to be Walter Mondale’s running mate. A break through for women! The glass ceiling cracked! She and Mondale got trounced by the Reagan/Bush ticket. The Republicans won 49 out of 50 States.
The campaign was a battleground. Especially for Ferraro. From day one of the campaign she was hit with ethics charges, campaign finance problems and tax problems.
Her Husband John Zaccaro’s business dealings came into play. I thought at the time that everything and everyone came down on Ferraro with more intensity than normal. I felt it was because she was Italian-American. So did Ferraro and many in the national media.
The 1960s through the 1980s was a time when to be Italian-American was considered to be Mafia. A stigma improperly attached. You could feel it however in your dealings with those of other backgrounds. It was the same feeling generated by the wasp commity as I grew up in Utica.
That was yesterday. All a long time ago. Today is what is important.
Enjoy your day!