Someone reported in this morning’s Citizen’s Voice: The Key West chicken saw its shadow yesterday, which means six more weeks of tourists.

Skipped the anti-gravity treadmill yesterday. It competed with a doctor visit. Followed by Walgreens and Publix.

Did my blog talk radio show last night Tuesday Talk with Key West Lou. Cost of a college education a winner!

Mentioned the attack on college loans was misplaced. The universities themselves should be attacked. High administrative and professorial salaries, new buildings. Chastised the federal government also. The U.S. is averaging $40 billion a year as their piece of the action re college loans. A finder’s fee, a commission. I do not know what it should be called.

I thought I could watch the first half of the Syracuse/Virginia Tech game on TV last night. It was not to be. Not available in Key West at all. Dan Reardon called me a few minutes after 8 asking where the hell was the game! I told him the sad news.

An exciting game missed. Syracuse won 68-60 in overtime. Syracuse loosing by 7 points with 1 1/2 minutes to go. Tied the game and blew Virginia Tech out in the overtime.

A case of legionnaires disease discovered in Key West. A resident. He is now hospitalized in Miami. Health officials in a quandary where he got it. Investigation on going. No further cases reported.

Stepin Fetchit. Spelled correctly. Never heard of him. This morning’s Key West Citizen notes Fetchit was born this day in 1893 in Key West. His real name Stephen Theodore Monroe Andrew Perry.

Fetchit went on to become a comedian and movie star. Big in the 1930s. First African-American to achieve such a height. The first American black actor to become a millionaire.

Thirty five years ago, I was in Rome. With the family and my parents. A memorable one month trip.

My then wife and daughters were shopping on the Via Condotti. The Via Condotti is Rome’s most expensive commercial street. Especially for clothes and other female paraphernalia.

At the time, the dollar was strong. One American dollar was worth 2,200 lire. Legalized thievery whenever you bought something.

My wife said give me $3,000 and I promise you the girls and I will not bother you for clothes for a year. $3,000 turned into lires made a person a semi-millionaire!

While the ladies were shopping, I walked around. I hate shopping.

At one end of the Via Condotti are the Spanish Steps. Next door to the Spanish Steps was a two or three story building. Sign said Keats-Shelly House. I went in. An experience!

John Keats was a respected poet during his time. His time was not long. He died this day in 1821 at the age of 20 or 21. In the bedroom on the top floor. In a room next to his bedroom were a number of artifacts and writings that were his.

I came across a rumpled sheet of paper titled A Thing of Beauty Is A Joy Forever. The lengthy first stanza. Encased in glass.

The poem well known even today. Keats’ most famous work. I had studied the poem in college in a third year English class.

Viewing the hand written poem brought tears to my eyes. I was viewing a document for the ages.

Enjoy your day!


  1. Hi Lou

    I lost my head yesterday. Clearly, you were reserving judgment about the season for the vaulted, distinguished, revered and highly respected Key West chicken… Bone Island Red… or just Red to his fair feathered friends.

    Like many fresh water Conchs, Red is said to have come to Key West from Rhode Island so he could escape the harsh Northern winters. Others say his ancestors came to The Rock from Cuba. Whatever the case, there is no doubt that results from Bone Island Red overshadow a grubby ole woodchuck any day.

    Six more weeks of tourists it is.

    Your Friend,
    Kokomo Man

  2. Lawrence Perry was actually born on May 5 1902 and was funny as hell. He was also quite an accomplished writer. His parents came to Key West in 1893.
    John Keats died on Feb. 23, 1821 at the age of 25 from tuberculosis.

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