Key West remembers Captain Tony and celebrates his 103rd birthday party tomorrow night. In memory only. Tony long gone. The party will be at Tony Tarracino’s formerly owned bar Captain Tony’s Saloon on Greene. Still there. Operating under the name Captain Tony’s. The celebration begins at 8.

A legend, an icon. Even before death. His life unique. Four wives, 13 children. Significant in itself. He was  everything from a bootlegger to Mayor of Key West. Jimmy Buffett was his campaign manager when Captain Tony ran and won.

Of his 13 children, I only know one. His daughter Toni. Love her dearly. Her father her hero. The stories she tells of her time with him!

Over the years, I wrote about Captain Tony 3 times. Rather than write pages about the Captain’s exploits, I refer you to the blogs. You will have a good understanding of the man after you have read the 3 blogs.

My blogs are archived. Easy to find from my web page. Even easier if you merely google the article’s date and title.

A History of What Is Now Captain Tony’s 5/29/2019, Toni Tarracino Shares Her Legacy 11/15/2018, and Captain Tony…..I Beat The Mafia 8/9/2018.

Join me at the party. Key West fun time!

Mangrove Mama’s is up the road about 20 miles. Means on Route 1 in Sugarloaf. Can’t miss it. Just south of the Bow Channel Bridge.

A typical Keys bar surrounded by woods. Funky. Most of the place an actual shack. Live music on the weekend.

It has been a while since I had been to Mangrove Mama’s. Twenty miles a long way to drive if you have been drinking. Though not for me any more. For heath reasons, I drink no more. It has been close to 3 months.

I eat the same thing each time I am there. A lobster reuben. Tastes as good as it sounds.

Hurricane people screwing me up. Last week, I reported based on their reports that it was going to be an easy hurricane season. Yesterday, the experts decided otherwise.

It has something to do with El Nino over the Pacific. El Nino winds would push hurricanes heading our way over the Atlantic to turn north when yet far off shore or break up a storm even before it reached hurricane status.

El Nino decided not to cooperate. There has been an unexpected decline in its force.

Prior to El Nino’s change, the experts thought the chance of hitting the Keys with a hurricane was less than 30 percent. The number has increased. Now projected at 45 percent. No less than.

Forty five percent suggests a probable hit. The questions are where and how strong.

One thing we have learned in Key West about hurricanes is that reports are less than reliable till a few days before the hurricane comes ashore. Hurricanes are fickle. Their paths can change dramatically.

Fat Albert. The big white government blimp on Cudjoe Key. Fat Albert got a companion in 2013. A smaller blimp.

Till today, I rarely gave any thought to Fat Albert. Occasionally would see it as I drove up U.S. 1. For 30 years have thought it to be a weather balloon.

I was wrong.

Fat Albert and Jr. belong to Homeland Security’s Custom and Border Patrol. In interdiction. The U.S.’s sky view running south into the Caribbean and north to Tampa. The “eagle eyes” looking for drug smugglers.

Fat Albert began operation in 1980. Last reported to have 21 employees.

My problem is whether Fat Albert and Jr. still exist. Every few years Homeland Security says it is going to close the facility down and then does not. I could not find any information as to whether it is still operative.

I could have looked yesterday when I was driving up to Mangrove Mama’s. The route took me through Cudjoe. All I had t do was look to my left. Fat Albert sat generally at teh end of Blimp Road.

I did not look. Next trip.

A Keys Weekly reporter interviewed Chip Lyons who is/was manager of the Cudjoe Key Aerostat Site. Homeland Security’s fancy name for Fat Albert. Lyons basically non-responsive. Said ninety nine percent of questions would have to be answered by the Custom and Border Agency. Questions like…..two blimps in the sky, why 2 blimps, same or different size, how high can the blimps go ( answered with “as high as they can go”), how long is the tether.

I will let you know if Fat Albert still there the next time I drive up U.S. 1 through Cudjoe.

The goodness of people. The consideration propel have for others. The Biblical do for others more than words.

Matt and Kelli recently married. Keli a school teacher.

They decided on a different type wedding gift. They asked the 70 guests to bring school supplies. Much needed today. Especially in the Roland Park Magnet School.

The guests came through. With more than requested, Besides school supplies, backpacks, uniforms, belts, underwear and socks.

The gifts plentiful. So much so that they were shared with other schools.

Cruelty Knows No Bounds. The title of a newspaper article yesterday. The article referred to Trump’s ordering the arrest of 680 illegal immigrants in Mississippi.

“Arrest” used before the raids. Watered down afterwards to “detained.”

Most Latinos.

Bernie Sanders stated the raids were “terror” and part of Trump’s “racist agenda.” Joe Biden claimed Trump was “morally unfit to lead the country.”

I agree with both.

I have consistently maintained ICE should be disbanded. Started doing so soon after Trump became President. I became uncomfortable as to how Trump was increasing the size and power of ICE.

I wrote and said then that ICE would be Trump’s private army in case of trouble. I compared ICE to Hitler’s Gestapo.

Nothing has changed. Things are worse as far as ICE is concerned.


Enjoy your day!



























  1. Glad to see you like eating east of the cow key bridge. And the parking fees are much, much, cheaper. More for the server to get a tip from. Go east young man!

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