A quick Russian item.

Putin invades Ukraine. Obama and the western powers try to get him to back off peacefully by the use of sanctions. The sanctions are severe. Russia is hurting. Especially when it comes to Russian gas sales which make up 75 percent of Russia’s revenues.

Putin six months ago said up yours, in effect. He announced a 30 year deal with China that involved the construction of a Russia to China gas line. China agreed to buy a certain amount of Russian gas.

This past week Putin announced another gas deal with China. A 30 year one, also. Another new gas line and delivery of more gas to China.

Putin is a tough guy. Perhaps a bully, also. He does not bend in the wind.

Russia is nowhere near the power it was as the Soviet Union. The break up of the Soviet Union in 1991 downgraded the new and smaller Russia. Russia was no longer the feared power it had been.

Putin is playing like Russia is the power of old. Russia still has a large number of nuclear weapons. Putin is also making friends big time with China.

Former Russian premier Gorbachev said yesterday that a new cold war could occur. It might already have started, he said.

I spent most of yesterday morning working on the second book in the series The World Upside Down. I have been lacking in diligence and have not been writing as much as I should. My publisher is unhappy. He had hoped to publish the book before Christmas. Looks like February now.

My afternoon was spent watching Syracuse and Duke play. I watched at home. The game was carried locally. The game went as anticipated. Syracuse got druubbed. Duke beat Syracuse 27-10. The Syracuse record now 3-7.

The Syracuse players have to feel lousy. I understand only too well. I captained my eighth grade grammar school team in basketball. An 18 game schedule. We lost all 18 games. Talk of despondency!

Dinner was at the other end of Duval. The new outside  bar at La Te Da. The bar top is new. Not sure whether it was marble or granite. Whatever, nice.

Power boat races end today. I hope to watch the races this afternoon.

Enjoy your Sunday!


There is nothing more important today than the Syracuse / Duke basketball game. Big time! Syracuse undefeated. Duke has lost 4. However, Duke has played strong in its last six games.

The morning line is Syracuse by 4 1/2 points.

I have no prediction. My heart will be in my throat the entire game.

Change of venue! I will not be at the Sports Pub watching the game. I will be at the outside bar at Don’s Place.

I enjoyed an early afternoon manicure at Tammy’s. Love that girl! Yesterday was the Asian New Year. We exchanged Happy New Years. She explained to me the celebration (7 days), what people do, etc. A big party! Male oriented, however. The men do much of the partying, eating, and drinking. The women stay home. She and her husband are Vietnamese. Sounds like the husbands are southern Republicans!

Researched a bit for my next book Growing Up Italian. You will love it!

I am doing some minor house repairs. Things I have let go too long. Jimmy and John were over yesterday painting. Keith and Jennifer working, also. I have the house up for sale. No, I am not leaving Key West. Would like to move into town, however. Tomorrow there is an open house. I have some further things to clean up on my own today. Getting ready for the open house is a pain in the ass!

Stopped at Don’s Place first last night. I was late. Usually I am out around 5. It was after 7. I had a good time. Enjoyed the company of Don, David, Jimmy, Hershel, Erika, Tom, Nancy, Tony, and Rob. Don convinced me to watch the Syracuse game tonight at his place.

The Chart Room was next. Emily noted it was not my usual arrival time. Lots of tourists. They came in and out in droves. Met Mike and Kathy. Never met them before. They live in Key West. Mike is one of John Lukas’ partners in the Big Ten Sports Pub. A couple came in. Only to buy drinks and run off with them in hand. In plastic, of course. They were all excited. Properly so. They were having dinner at L’Attitudes.

On the way home, I stopped at Publix to pick up a few things. Met a very nice lady. At the cold cut counter. She was working behind it.

Her name is Ann. She kept looking at me. Do I know you, she asked. What is your name? We finally figured it out. She reads KONK Life and my columns. Not religiously, but frequently. She was also aware of my book The World Upside Down.

I liked Ann. Not because she read my column, though it probably contributed. I may be buying cold cuts more frequently just so I can talk with her.

I have to move my ass. Sloan will be here soon. We are having audio problems with the blog talk radio show and are speaking directly with blog talk and doing test runs this morning.

Enjoy your day!