I finally made an ML fundraiser. ML is running for Fantasy Queen. The winner is determined by who raises the most money for AIDS Help. There are several candidates and big money involved.

ML’s party was at the Galleon outside bar. The place was packed!

I got to see JJ. My old friend from the Chart Room. He is now bartending at the Galleon.

Howard Livingston and wife Cindy were in attendance. Howard was performing. Howard and I have been friends for 16 years since first we met at the bar at Mangoes when we both were involved with house remodeling and construction. A nicer person does not exist!

Relatively new found friend Susie was busy working. She is one of ML’s co-chairs. Susie bought and brought a number of my books. The World Upside Down was an auction item. I did some book signing before they were put out.

Met Fiona and her brother Johnny. Fiona was a law office administrator for 20 plus years somewhere on the Jersey Shore. She has retired to Key West. Has an apartment somewhere off Duval behind the Grand. Her brother Johnny is from Chicago. Spends some of his Key West days working at Home Depot.

Key West publisher Guy deBoer and I chatted a while. I like Guy. He works hard. It is the only way.

Guy publishes KONK Life where my weekly newspaper column appears. More importantly, Guy and ML are a couple. For several years.

Met a lot of nice people. Unfortunately and apologetically, I cannot remember all their names.

Though it is obvious, I want everyone to be aware. ML is my choice for Fantasy Fest Queen.

My day started with the x-ray I was supposed to have had wednesday. Purpose to determine if I have any disk impingement which is causing my sciatica type pain.

Then to Don’s Place. I had a meeting. Great atmosphere in which to conduct business. My desk is the Truman corner of the bar. Hemingway had his Sloppy Joe’s. I have Don’s Place.

I spent the afternoon working on tuesday evening’s blog talk radio show. Preparation is everything. I came across an interesting item involving bigotry. The New York Times’ David Brooks commented on the topic recently.

First, Louis’s recollection. There was a time in the 1950s and 1960s, and probably before, when Jews and Gentiles rarely married. A religious thing. Primarily from the Jewish side. A parental no no. I had a law school Catholic friend who married a Jewish lady. They were head over heels in love. The marriage lasted three years. The family pressures were too much.

Now comes Brooks’ item. It involves political bigotry. He wrote that in 1960,  5 percent of Republicans and 4 percent of Democrats said they would be “…..displeased if their children married someone of the opposite party…..By 2010…..numbers had jumped to 49 percent and 33 percent.” No wonder the two parties cannot get along! The dislike/hatred runs deep!  So much for the enlightened era we live in.

I had some time to kill before the ML party. I stopped into the Island Dogs Bar for a drink. First time in several years. A cute place on Front Street. The building sits next to the Pier House parking lot. The Bar is primarily frequented by tourists.

Colorful! Pleasant! I sat and watched happy tourists come and go. The Islands Dog Bar provides them with a a perfect space.

Island Dogs Bar is owned by world famous Jim Croce and Dave Thibault. Dave is Michael and Nancy’s son in law. He has made a huge success of the Island Dogs Bar. They are very proud of him.

I like Michael. In another time, we played golf together He bartends for Don. Nancy was Don’s business manager for years. She is now involved in the Fausto operation.

I like Michael. Love Nancy.

Tonight, Syracuse/Notre Dame at the Meadowlands. Syracuse will lose. Unfortunately. However, that is the way it is. I plan on watching the game at Don’s Place.

I am into my last two days of steroids. What happens when I go off?

Enjoy your day!



There was a time…..Yes, the Beatles came to Key West…..By accident…..Not planned.

The year 1964. The Beatles were flying to Jacksonville to do a show. Hurricane Dora was on its way to Jacksonville, also. The Beatles plane was diverted to Key West.

The exact day, I am not certain. Today’s Key West Citizen suggests 9/9. I searched the internet a bit. I came up with 9/10 and 9/11 also. Some articles suggest the Beatles were here a couple of days. Others, merely overnight. One of the articles has them arriving around 3 in the morning.

I suspect the Beatles were in Key West more than 24 hours. They broke loose!

They were staying at was then the Key Wester Motel. Gone now, replaced by a Hyatt facility. The Beatles at some point found the Key Wester bar. They took their instruments and played and sang for hours. Word spread they were in town. Other musicians showed up after their work day ended and played with them.

The articles are consistent that the Beatles did a bit of drinking. They became inebriated. One of them is described as having made love to the toilet bowl. Something most of us have experienced on one occasion or another.

Whatever, the Beatles enjoyed Key West. The locals enjoyed the Beatles.

It was fortunate their plane bypassed Jacksonville. Dora hit Jacksonville hard. Five dead and over $2 million in damage.

I have not mentioned JJ in ages. A friend. Formerly a bartender at the Chart Room. JJ now bartends at the Galleon. JJ’s wife’s picture is in the Key West Citizen today. Ann Jonas. She is Citizen of the Day. The brief article mentions that she and JJ will be celebrating their fifth wedding anniversary this week. Congratulations! I only met Ann once. JJ obviously many times. He always spoke of Ann as if he were deeply in love. Obviously he was and is.

Turtles in the news again. Sharks, also. Our friends and foes in the sea.

There was a recent newspaper article concerning the two. A world wide study was completed. Apparently man has been killing off too many sharks. Sharks kill turtles. With fewer sharks, the turtle population has over grown.

Turtles eat seagrass. Sharks do not. Little fish live and eat in and off the seagrass. In some areas such as Bermuda, the seagrass is down to nothing. The turtles responsible. Scientists are trying to figure out a way to diminish the turtle population.

It does not appear there is a similar problem in Key West. Our seagrass is in full bloom. Our ocean conservation people are interested in protecting both sharks and turtles. We even have a Turtle Hospital in Marathon.

Since the study was world wide, does it have any validity as regards Key West and the rest of the Keys? I don’t know. Perhaps. I am sure some of our ocean people will be playing close attention to the situation over the next several years. In the meantime, there is no plan to kill a portion of the turtle population. I hope there never is.

Scotland votes soon re independence. The people will vote. They want to disconnect from the United Kingdom/England.

The southern states wanted to and did the same thing in the U.S. back in 1860-1. State legislatures voted to secede. Lincoln stood up to them. The Civil War occurred. You know the rest.

Re Scotland, the people are voting as opposed to their elected representatives. Does it make a difference? Will the Queen and Parliament stand by and permit the secession? It seems like everyone is waiting for the vote to take place before taking a public position on the issue.

My back problem has returned, though not as bad.

Because of my back, I have been late with certain of my writings. I did not do my KONK Life column which publishes tomorrow till Sunday. The article is titled Income Inequality.

My blog talk radio show is this evening. I did not get to preparation till yesterday. Spent all day working on tonight’s show. A significant portion will concern income inequality. The reason is there are so many interesting sidelights to the issue. Some pieces of information most of us might not have known.

Join me this evening. I guarantee you will enjoy the show. Nine my time. Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou.

Enjoy your day!


Don and Chris hail from the Syracuse area. They visit Key West a half dozen times a year. They have returned! Came in last night. Friend Ed is with them.

Their favorite haunt is the Chart Room. I am sure they drank with Emily last night. We are meeting tonight at 7 at The Sports Pub to watch the Syracuse/North Carolina State game. Ed, also.

I am sure Don and Chris were shocked to hear JJ was no longer at the Chart Room. When I diet, I do not drink. I try to stay away from bars.  I fear succumbing to the near occasion of sin!

I do not know why JJ is no longer at one of my favorite drinking holes. He is now at the Tiki Galleon. I have never in all my Key West years drunk there. I will now, however.

Syracuse and North Carolina State met once during the season. Syracuse won by one point 56-55. A different time, however. Yersterday’s success does not guarantee today’s. What has gone before does not count. It is the post season and some teams have improved vastly. Some just get pure lucky. Tonight’s game will be interesting.

An example of getting lucky, etc. was last night’s game between Villanova and Seton Hall. Seton Hall won. Over a Villanova team ranked #3 nationally and considered a #1 seed in the Big Dance.

Enjoyed lunch wednesday with June Hudson at Geiger Key. Fun! Two old friends chatting away!

June leaves tomorrow for her home in Delaware. She is driving back alone. Does not seem to concern her.

June is going to Italy for 10 days in June. With her 14 year old granddaughter. The two alone. June is excited. She said her granddaughter is, also.

Bocce last night. I did not go. I would have passed out bending over to pick up the balls! My cell phone is on the blink this morning so I do not know if we won or lost.

Got a tweet from a voice from the past. Kurt Lubs. One of Key’s Wests most famous bartenders, he left more than a year ago to return home to Indiana. He will be in next week. Terrific! A friend!

Strange weather the past 24 hours. Temperature dropped to 64 last night. I could have used a body next to me. Presently, 68. Will reach mid 70s in the afternoon. Tonight, high 60s.

After the Syracuse game, I will be heading over to Don’s Place. Grant from Bad Boy Burritto will be on national TV at 10. The cooking channel.

My book, my book, my book! Buy it! People are. I should not complain. However, it would be nice if more did. Trust me, you will enjoy it. The World Upside Down is available as an e book or soft back cover on and My picture on the cover alone is worth the price of the book!

Enjoy your day!



Key West and Harry Truman have a special relationship. Truman made Key West his vacation spot. His place for rest and relaxation.

Yesterday was March 12. Two significant things occurred on that date involving the former beloved President.

By the way, the title of today’s blog is running through my head to the opening tune of the Howdy Doody Show…..It’s Howdy Doody time!

Truman made  eleven visits to Key West totaling 175 days. He arrived in Key West on March 12, 1964 for a 2 week vacation. Nineteen sixty four was well after Truman had left office. In between were eight years of Eisenhower and then three years of Kennedy. If I am correct, Johnson would have been President when Truman made the 1964 visit. If I am off by a year or so re one of the Presidents, I apologize.

The other March 12 was of historical significance. On March 12, 1947, the President introduced what became known as the Truman Doctrine. World War II was over. The Soviet Union was a menace. The free world was looking to the United States for help. The thrust of the Truman Doctrine that day was to give economic and military aid to Greece and Turkey. Truman was of the opinion, and properly so from my way of thinking, that to not help Greece and Turkey would cause them to fall under Communist domination.

I would have made a lousy junkie. The doctor put me on codeine and steroids for a week to get rid of a six week cough in my upper chest. The cure worked. I no longer cough. However, I feel like the patient about whom the doctor told the family the operation was a success, but the patient died.

I have been off the meds for three days. I am totally absolutely without question exhausted. All the time. No exaggeration involved. Not the slightest.

I talked with the Doctor this morning. I was advised I would be ok. It is the steroids, or the lack thereof at the moment, which are making me tired. Some sort of withdrawal. It will be a couple of days more before my body readjusts.

The only thing I can think of is how did athletes like Barry Bonds handle the situation. He had to be on steroids days at a time. When he went off, how long was he screwed up as I am? Was he screwed up? Perhaps there was another pill or shot to enable the body to escape what I am experiencing.

I am so tired at the moment that my arms have become heavy as I type.

I am in no mood to beat myself up. Good bye for today.

Enjoy your Thursday!



I had lunch yesterday at Azur with an extremely interesting man. Shirrel Rhoades.

After an exciting life in that other world, Shirrel retired to Key West. Busy his whole life, he needed to fill in his time a bit doing something productive. Sitting around and contemplating his navel was not an option.

Shirrel delved into his bag of experiences. One was publishing. Shirrel started a publishing business in Key West. Actually two. One is Absolutely Amazing e Books. The other The New Atlantian Library.

Shirrel’s publishing concept is simple. He publishes via e mail. As more and more people leave hard copy and go to the internet to read, he may be at the forefront of the transition’s publishing phase.

His background varied and professional. Shirrel has been a writer, publisher, professor, film maker, and movie critic. He has held high level executive positions with the Reader’s Digest, Marvel Comics, The Ladies Home Journal, and Harper’s Magazine.

He was the man who brought us the Captain Marvel comic book for many years.

I enjoyed Shirrel’s company.

I enjoyed Azur, also. I do not eat there enough. The food is outstanding. I am still on my Italian trip kick. I enjoyed a dish of rigatonis.

Stephanie Manaher was having lunch with some lady friends. Stephanie is a school teacher and wife to the infamous Don of Don’s Place. A lady.

Last night was the Chart Room. I was there for several hours. JJ bartending. Peter and I talked most of the time.

Peter can be found every morning at Fort Zachary Taylor Beach. He has a special spot near the tree line on one side of the Beach.

Female turtles have been coming onto the beach, digging large holes, and depositing their eggs. Then covering the eggs with sand. The mother is then gone, never to see her young ones.

It takes 60 days for the eggs to hatch. Each female drops about 100 eggs. Three or four will survive the hatching, trekking and swim out into the ocean.

There was a hole nearby Peter. It had been there for more than 60 days. The Park Rangers carefully removed the sand from the turtle nest in order to determine what was going on. Turns out nothing. No eggs. Whatever the mother may have done, it was a dry run.

Met an interesting couple. Cory and Brieanna. Vacationing at the Pier House. They hail from somewhere on the Florida mainland. Nice people.

Cory is an insurance broker with Allied Solutions in Boca Raton. His company deals with insurance programs for financial institutions such as banks and credit unions. Brieanna is a doctor. She specializes in end of life problems. She does much work with Hospice.

Tonight, I return to the air! After nine weeks! Blog talk radio. Nine this evening. One half hour. The entire half hour will be devoted to the rising Nazi power in Greece. You will be amazed by what I learned on my trip!

Join me.

Enjoy your day!



There are two constants in life. Change and death.

I am concerned today with change. Change to Key West’s beloved Pier House.

The Pier House has  been sold. $90 million. Big money for a special place. Official takeover by the new owner is scheduled for monday. Based on some strange faces at the Chart Room and Wine Galley last night, I suspect some of the new people have already arrived and are evaluating the operation from both a staffing and continuation aspect.

There is a concern among many that the Chart Room may be closed. Gossip is it will become a tee shirt/sun tan lotion shop. If there is any validity to the rumor, it is sad. I doubt that is the case, however. Hotel operators have to know a good thing when they see it. That is their business. The Chart Room works.

Then there is the Wine Galley. Bobby Nesbitt put it on the map many years ago. Larry Smith took it to a new level.

No one knows what is going to happen to the Wine Galley.

I was at the Chart Room and Wine Galley last night. Everyone appeared happy. I question the outward appearance, however. There was a sadness intermingled with the laughs. The unanswered question in everyone’s mind at both places. Is this the end of the Chart Room? Of the Wine Galley? Regarding staff, who will be retained and who will be let go.

An awkward feeling.

I love the Chart Room! I am there at least five evenings a week at cocktail time. My seat at the bar has become a note taking place for me. I write about the people I meet on the back of coasters.

I meet new people from everywhere. World wide. I mention some in my blog. The Chart Room is mentioned almost daily.

As a result, a number of people stop in to meet Key West Lou. They know it is my hangout. JJ, Emily and Mary will sometimes telephone me to make me aware that someone from Idaho or where ever is in and looking for Key West Lou. Tourists come up and ask if I am Key West Lou.  All read this blog religiously and know that the Chart Room is the place to find me.

I have thought on occasion I might be responsible for 5-10 per cent of the business that goes through the Chart Room. Could be.

Ghosts from the past can be felt. The Chart Room has been open and basically never remodeled for 45 years. Jimmy Buffett new to town playing his guitar in the corner for coins. The group who first made the Chart Room their special place each day. Most are now gone. However, a bit of their ashes rest in the bar rail.

Last night, Chart Room regulars such as Peter, Jean and Joe Thornton, Sean and Virginia, Dave, and Stephanie were there getting a last fix of their favorite spot.

I consider the Chart Room the cross roads of America. At one time or another, most people stop in.

The Wine Galley. Great music every evening. Larry Smith responsible. He entertains. He brings in guests to join him in entertaining. Customers walk up to the mike and sing along with Larry. Everyone has a good time.

The boss of the Chart Room is Kathleen Peace. The Food and Beverage Director of the Pier House. A lady. Lovely. Personable. Tough in doing her job. Does it well.

Kathleen also sings. A magnificent voice! Booming! I sometimes think the walls of the Wine Galley are going to blow out when she hits the high notes.

Kathleen was at the Wine Galley last night. I was the happy recipient of a hug and kiss.

The Wine Galley had a good number of people last night. I had the feeling some were there to taste one last time the flavor of Larry and the room. Fearful that it might not be there next week.

John and Ali were in from England. They used to visit for a month once a year. Now it is two times a year. Good for them! John and Ali can be found most evenings when in Key West at the Wine Galley.

Larry’s mother Helen was in attendance. Eighty six. Her husband/Larry’s father passed on several weeks ago. Helen has come to Key West to live with Larry and Christine.

Speaking of Christine, she too is entitled to credit for the success of the Wine Galley. She and Larry have been married for years. Christine is a school teacher by day. An entertainer by night. Paints professionally on weekends. A full plate! Many evenings she joins Larry in singing.  A special voice belonging to a special person!

Steve and Midge are regulars. Love them both! Last night Midge brought Vic over to me. Vic Kim. I finally found some one older than me that enjoys being out on the town.

The reason Midge brought us together is that we both graduated from Manhattan College. Vic was one year ahead of me. I enjoyed meeting him.

We reminisced a bit. We both knew my class mates John Martin and Otto Obermier. Both served as U.S. Attorneys for Manhattan. Martin went on to become a federal judge. Otto one of New York City’s outstanding attorneys.

It was a nice trip back in time with Vic.

Mary Deasy was in attendance also. Mary sings. Sang a few years back also. She was not that good back when. Larry took her under his wing, as he  has so many others, and developed Mary into the great voice she is today.

Ray was sitting with John, Ali, Christine, and others. I have not seen Ray in a while. He has become an excellent entertainer also. Plays the electric guitar. Has all the moves.

Steve was bartending and waiting tables, as usual. A nice guy. A good guy. A terrific worker. Most evenings, he handles the bar and tables all alone. He does the job of two people. Always on his game, he is the best!

This is sort of a good bye to what will now be referred to as the old Pier House. A new owner means now staff. Changers will be made. Again, I hope the the Chart Room and  Wine Galley are left alone. Together with the fine people staffing both rooms.

That which is perfect cannot be made better.

Enjoy your Sunday!



A terrific lunch yesterday!

Anna has been my housekeeper for 8 years. A Polish immigrant, now a proud citizen. Her daughter Julia was making her First Communion. Anna invited me to the celebration following Church.

The luncheon was at Sole’s. Anna’s husband is a chef there.

What a meal!

Perogies, lobster tails, lamb chops, egg plant in oil, and on and on. Fantastic! I made a pig of myself on the lamb chops.

Little Julia was lovely. Anna was lovely. First time I have seen Anna dress dressed.

Anna’s mother and sister flew in from Poland for the event. The mother I knew from the times she has visited in the past. The sister was new to me. Very attractive. Unfortunately, English not spoken by either.

Then to Lisa’s. As soon as I walked in the front door, I knew something was wrong. Robert and Ally were seated on small chairs at the coffee table. Busily doing home work. Never raised their heads to acknowledge me.

They had been bad. They were being punished.

Lisa said they were behind in their homework and had not helped to clean up the house mess they had made. Whatever Lisa said must have been forceful. I have never seen Robert and Ally so cowed.

There was a benefit to me. Jake had no one to play with. He was stuck with me. Yesterday, we were friends. I hope he remembers the next time I visit.

I watched the Kentucky Derby at Don’s Place. A great race. Orb looked terrific in coming from behind in the mud to win.

Joanie was sitting next to me at the bar. We had all bought into a pool. There was a $10 one and a $5 one. Joanie bought one of each. You pulled your horse blind out of a glass. Joanie got Orb each time. She was moaning and groaning……How can I win?

She won $300! God bless!

I was down for some reason last night. Intended to go directly home from Don’s Place. At the last minute, I changed my mind and headed over to the Chart Room.The race crowd was still there.

Spent some time chatting with Sheila.

Then Mike and Tina came in. Two of the grandest people! Worldly. They are frequent travelers. All over the globe!

I had not seen them in well over a year.

Good people! I am especially enamoured with Tina.

Mike and Tina own a home in Key West. On the street across from the cemetery. Should be dead at night. Not recently, Mike told me. Too many tourists partying till late in the morning.

Tina and I talked quite a while. About everything.

By the time I left the Chart Room, I felt good. Actually, terrific! My spirits were up. I give Tina the credit.

Mike and Tina were with some neighbors from the cemetery street. Don and Sue. Wisconsin people. Snowbirds. Don was or still is in the food business. Sue in marketing research. I spoke with Don a while. Sue got lost in the crowd.

JJ was bartending. JJ was a celebrity yesterday. His picture and a brief bio were in the Key West Citizen. JJ was Person of the Day.

The Audubon House was pictured in the Key West Citizen also yesterday. Obviously named after John James Audubon. I have always wondered why the Audubon house is named after Audubon.

Audubon lived the home roughly one month back in 1832. That’s all! He painted birds and plants from the house’s backyard. He also painted them from other areas in Key West and the Tortugas. Some ended up in his famous compilation The Birds of America.

Someone must have decided to name the house after Audubon to make it a tourist attraction. It is. However, a local’s also. The grounds are lovely. Many the party I have attended on those grounds. The interior is a bit spartan. Many antiques. Not enough. Worthy of a visit.

May 5 is Cinco de Mayo. I never heard the term till this past week. There are reminders all over Key West that Cinco de Mayo is to be celebrated today.

Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for fifth of May) is a holiday held on May 5 that commemorates the Mexican army’s victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 12, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguin.

So what!

I am confused. Not only have I never heard of the holiday in the 25 years I have been frequenting Key West, there is not a sizable Mexican community living here. There are many of Spanish origin and descent. Few of Mexican.

If the city fathers came up with Cinco de Mayo as another Key West holiday to be celebrated, they are crazy! We have so many holidays now that they are overlap each other.

The last item I want to talk about this morning is peanut butter.

I love peanut butter! Not on bread, not with jelly. Directly out of the jar on a tablespoon 2-3 times a day. I am a creature of habit. I have enjoyed Peter Pan creamy peanut butter for years. Yesterday, I discovered a new and better peanut butter! Sorry, Peter Pan.

Jif creamy! Smoother in texture and better taste. The only reason I bought it was Publix was having a sale.

The best parts of my day yesterday were chatting with Tina and discovering Jif peanut butter!

Enjoy your Sunday!




I cannot diet and visit my usual haunts. The near occasions of sin are food and drink. So, I remain home evenings. My recollection is that last night was the second time in the 35 days I have been dieting that I went out.

I was excited. It was exciting.

The Chart Room was the venue selected. It had not changed. JJ bartending. Dave, Sheila, and Captain Peter in attendance.

I was good. Did not drink nor eat pop corn. Two diet Pepsi’s instead.

Captain Peter never ceases to amaze me. I learned last night he was a bird watcher.

The Captain spoke specifically of two birds. I did not know them. I know nothing about birds. He had sighted one species here in Key West. Another flying in mass over Miami recently. Both totally foreign to Florida.

The birds’ habitat is Labrador. They were far from home. Captain Peter attributes their Florida presence to Hurricane Sandy. Interesting.

Duval Street was packed. Jam packed. Traditionally, the week between Christmas and New Year’s is the busiest for Key West. Come Wednesday morning, there will be no one. You can throw a bowling ball down Duval from one end to the other without hitting any one.

Tomorrow my blog talk radio show! Seven in the morning my time. You can listen and/or call in. The show is quick moving.

This will be show #3. Help me! Not only listen, telephone me from anywhere with a comment or thought. I am going to lead with the fiscal cliff, France trying a 75 per cent tax on its millionaires, and Silvio Burlosconi having to pay his wife $3 million a month. We are not limited. Can talk about any topic you wish.

Those living outside the United States can listen in/participate via Skype.

It may be radio, but a computer is required to join me. It is a radio internet show. Found easily at Click on the second box that appears. The one with the date of the show. Voila, you will be in business!

I plan on going out again tonight. I will cheat, however. Plan on drinking. The game plan is to walk Duval a bit and at midnight watch Sushi come down on the red shoe at the Bourbon Street Pub. If I change my mind and stay in, I will still watch Sushi. CNN carries the drop live each year.

Hillary Clinton. How sad! How terrible! Hope her condition clears up swiftly.

Many were critical of Hillary when she announced she could not testify before the Congressional committee looking into Benghazi because  she had fallen and suffered a concussion. Many thought it was a convenient made up excuse. One of this blog’s loyal readers wrote and referred her malady as an “immaculate concussion.” I must concede, I thought ill of the situation as well. A lesson to be learned. Never jump the gun…..give a person the benefit of the doubt. Not all political figures are the same. Some tell the truth.

Enjoy your New Year’s Eve day! Better yet, enjoy this evening!