My favorite food. Stone crabs!

The season opens 10/15 and runs through 5/16.

The red tide affected last year’s catch. I only had stone crabs 3 times. The taste was off. Fishermen blamed the red tide which had devastated the stone crab population.

This year the red tide is dramatically diminished. It is not expected to affect the stone crabs.

One fisherman described last season’s stone crab catch as “bad, bad, bad.”

The recent spiny lobster season was not the best. Supposedly the spiny lobsters still feeling the affects of Irma. Irma killed most off, caused larva to wash away, and destroyed their habitats.

A big event tomorrow night. The Southernmost Slow Ride. Also known as the Full Moon Bike Ride. Begins at 7. Runs to 10. Gather at Truman Waterfront Park to participate.

All ages. Few costumes.

Fantasy Fest a week away. Mosquitos a problem. Key West and Monroe County concerned for Fantasy Fet visitors. The last thing desired is for some to come down with dengue fever or some other mosquito affliction.

The Mosquito Control Board has gotten ready. It has made 2,834 inspections to make sure Key West and the lower keys are safe for visitors and locals alike.

This is Poker Run Weekend. Wrote about it yesterday. A big event. Fun for participants. A money maker for merchants. Things have been dead the past several months.

I mentioned yesterday that 3 years ago there had been a problem. Bad bikers came to town. The Marlon Brando crew. They raised hell. Changed the flavor of the event.

I thought whatever the necessary steps were to make sure such did not occur again had been taken.

I was wrong. The bad bikers expected to make problems this year also.

The Key West City Manager and Monroe County Sheriff advised they have concern.

Prohibition affected all of the U.S. Even back then, Key West had big time drinkers living here.

On this day in 1933, Key West voted 1,299-85 for the repeal of the 18th Amendment which prohibited the sale of alcohol beverages.

Drinkers then and drinkers now.

The Key West Lighthouse is a popular visitors’ venue today. Located at the corner of Truman and Whitehead, always a crowd.

No long used as a lighthouse. Deactivated and removed from operation in 1969.

The lighthouse was constructed in 1825. The Great Havana Hurricane of 1846 destroyed it. Another was built in its place in 1848 and operated till its official closing in 1969.

Cuba has known many revolutions. The first of significance was in 1868. Cubans and Spaniards never got along.

Carlos M. De Cespedes declared Cuba a free state and led the revolution. The war that began in 1868 became a ten year war ending in 1878.

The Spaniards crushed the Cubans. The defeat led to a massive Cuban migration to Key West. With the migration came the Cuban cigar.

Factories were opened to make hand rolled Cuban cigars. The experienced work force was in Key West because of the migration. Clear leaf Cuban tobacco was used.

There were once stilt houses in the waters west of Key West. Out a number of miles. Seventeen at their height. In various places. Three off Ballast Key.

All privately owned and constructed.

There came a time when the 17 were down to 11. I could not determine the precise reason why. I assume because of abandonment and non-use.

No one actually lived in the stilt houses. They were weekend places, party places. Sometimes a place from which to fish for spiny lobsters and stone crabs.

The area where the stilt houses were located at some point became part of the 2,000 square mile Everglades National Park. Whether before or after, I could not ascertain.

The federal government said the stilt houses had to come down. I cannot tell you why. Little is written about the stilt houses.

The federal government took the stilt houses under eminent domain. A major federal case ensued. Long decision. The primary issue just compensation. A federal judge by the name of William O. Mehrtens heard the case.

I write about the stilt houses for 2 reasons.

First, I would not expect stilt houses to be built or survive in ocean waters adjoining Key West. Recall, a number of miles out.

Second, my Chart Room friend of days gone by Marty Leshaw owns a stilt house somewhere in the Atlantic off Fort Lauderdale. His home is in Fort Lauderdale.

I have seen pictures of his stilt house. It is large compared to those in photos of Key West area stilt homes.

Marty has invited me several times to join him in Fort Lauderdale for a few days. I never seem to make it. Some day.

Quote for the day. Attributed to Aldous Huxley: “Men do not learn much from the lessons of history, and that is the most important of all lessons.”

Jane Fonda a woman whose life has been full of multi-faceted experiences. A major movie star in her own right, daughter of Henry Fonda, Barbella, protestor for causes, former wife of Ted Turner, etc.

She has done it all. Still doing.

Jane is soon to be 80. She was arrested friday by Washington police for taking part in a climate change protest on the steps of the U.S. Capital Building. The charge unlawful demonstrating.

She was one of 16 arrested. A photo indicated those demonstrating were small in number. I would not be surprised if only 16 in total.

The story of her arrest stated, “She was protesting mostly with people not yet old enough to vote.”

Jane stated she will be on the Capital steps for the next 16 fridays continuing the protest. Sort of throwing the gauntlet down: Arrest me, if you dare! They probably will.

We live in an era today where people have little trust in their government. Is was the same during the Vietnam War. The U.S. was in turmoil. Most disagreed with the war, no reason to be there, I do not want my children killed in a stupid war, etc.

Jane protested against the Vietnam War, also. She took a bad hit because of it.

Many thought the Vietnamese were correct and the U.S. wrong. Jane went to Vietnam to see for herself. While in Hanoi, she was photographed sitting on an enemy aircraft gun surrounded by Vietnamese soldiers. Everyone smiling.

It was 1972. By that time, almost 60,000 Americans had died in the war. The photo hit newspapers world wide. Millions of Americans were incensed by her conduct. They took it to mean she was pro-Vietnamese.

Such was not the case. A trip encased in good intent became her downfall. She became known as Hanoi Jane.

She was 34 at the time. Her reputation and career took a beating for some time thereafter. Her conduct considered by many to be treasonous.

She recognized her visit was the result of a lapse of judgment. She also believed she had been used by the Vietnamese.

She never really defended herself. Took her beating quietly. Eventually time overcame wounds inflicted.

You have to respect Jane Fonda today. A woman almost 80 demonstrating with teenagers and college students for a worthy cause. Arrested therefore and knowing she will be arrested again and again as she protests in subsequent weeks.

There are not many like her.

I don’t think I have been out an evening since last friday or saturday. Not drinking one reason. Key West a bar/drinking town. Difficult to sit and chat with folks when they are drinking and you are not.

Another reason I have become a recluse this week is that I fell. Again. In the house this time. Climbing the stairs.

Don’t ask me how. I don’t know. I fell against the bannister. My shoulder still hurts. No fracture. My arm bled from the force of the fall. A bit of a mess.

Tonight, I am out! Definitely!

I have a manicure with Tammy at 5:30. Then to the Chart Room for a diet Coke or two. A bit of a walk on Duval to look at the bikes. Finally, dinner at La Trattoria. I crave pasta with garlic sauce. Not a problem. I will be without a woman.

Enjoy your day!





  1. I guess that a lot of people just don’t like motorcycles. One way to punish bikers and take away their happy is to force them to wear helmets, especially the ones who don’t want to, by claiming some trumped up excuse about citizens having to pay for all that brain damage that is happening all over the place.

  2. I don’t think it’s motorcycles most people object to, it’s bikers. Bikers being those irresponsible louts who flout perfectly reasonable laws meant for everyone, especially the loud and unruly monster bikes that roar into Key West every year and the generally pig like behavior of the bikers. Don’t agree with me? Fine, bring your teenage daughters to Key West while they’re here and see how uncomfortable you feel about them then. Why should decent people have to put up with that? Fantasy Fest is a far safer and tamer weekend than any Biker weekend.

  3. It great that Jane is protesting and is committed to being arrested every week. Glad she is making sure the police resources of Washington DC are being used so effectively.

  4. Jane Fonda is 81. Have you ever thought about having someone do a quick read of your blog before you hit publish? Or maybe read it over yourself? You might find some of the typos that way. And how about a little research before announcing someone’s age? Just some thoughts.

    • Thanks for that correction about Jane Fonda’s age, along with your other attempt at pithy humor. Sure helped make Lou’s blog today more understandable and so much easier to grasp. Nothing better than some fat guy named Wanda with an iPhone sitting on the edge of his bed, correcting a woman’s age upward, now is there.

  5. How did Jane Fonda get from California to Washington DC? Turns out she flew on a private jet.The whole point of climate change protests is to encourage the reduction or elimination of carbon emissions. You know, like the emissions produced by a private jet.

    • Wish you would feel that way about Rudy Giuliani’s flights to the Ukraine and maybe Jared’s flights to Saudi Arabia. No reason either of them shouldn’t fly commercial, is there?

  6. So Bill Barr, the United States Attorney General, has a private meeting with Rupert Murdoch at Murdock’s home last Wednesday evening and the following day Murdock owned FOX News fires Shep Smith, who has recently been critical of Trump on his nightly FOX news show. Who needs to make up phony conspiracy theories when there is this kind of stuff going on.

    • Shepard Smith has said in his own words that he asked Fox management to release him from his contract. They asked him to stay, but finally reluctantly agreed to his request. Also, Smith’s time slot was mid-afternoon, not at night. A little more accuracy and less conspiracy please.

      • Anyone who believes Shep Smith simply resigned of his own choosing and that they actually asked him to stay on, is either delusional or is spinning the truth on this issue too.

        • Ok, maybe we should just go with what Shep Smith said on-air…that he was resigning of his own choosing and Fox asked him to stay on, before accepting his resignation.

          Are you saying it’s delusional to believe what Shep Smith actually said? Or is Shep spinning the truth?

      • Guess I would have expected a reply that maybe wondered why William Barr, the Attorney General of the United States, was in a private meeting with Rupert Murdoch (who owns FOX News) at night in his private home, rather than a correction about Smiths FOX News time slot.

        • These public figures are still entitled to have private lives. It’s just as likely that they were talking about football, drinking bourbon and smoking cigars.

          • It is naive to think you have a private life if you are the Attorney General of the United States, particularly under this president.

            Remember when Bill Clinten, as a Private Citizen, met with Obama’s AG Loretta Lynch, for a VERY brief encounter when their planes were parked next to each other on the tarmac? That encounter was not considered appropriate, even though there were others present. Quite the uproar, if you’ll recall. Why not this time.

  7. Most of the!@#$ here, including the OP’s drivel, is as inaccurate as the dither about JF’s age. It’s astounding how, with a few facts skewed, a nincompoop from privelege can become a poor misguided innocent.

    Please try to find something worthwhile to spout about.


  8. Hanoi Jane earned the name. She went to the enemy’s capital, Hanoi, and sat in an anti-aircraft gun emplacement. She participated in a mock shoot-down of an American aircraft… and laughed about it.

    Her visit gave aid and comfort to the enemy. The same enemy that broke every cease fire, treaty, and peace agreement they ever made.

    Her treasonous act came at a time when that enemy was killing and maiming US servicemen who were doing their duty… going where their government sent them.

    If Trump wants to lock somebody up, it should be Hanoi Jane for treason.

    Do I sound bitter? You’re damned right I am. Me and about 5,000,000 other servicemen who were there. Most of us have forgiven much, but few of us will ever forgive her.

    Kokomo Man

    • Jane Fonda wasn’t the problem in Viet Nam, don’t be looking for blame in all the wrong places. Try start looking Robert McNamara or William Westmoreland. Say what you will, but Jane Fonda wasn’t the one who was doing all the lying.

      • There is plenty of fault to go around. You may have been against the war and those that died there (and other wars) were standing up for your right to speak out. But only one of the names you mentioned in your post was treasonous… Hanoi Jane.

        • If Jane Fonda had done ANYTHING treasonous she would have been charge appropriately and prosecuted. Please try and keep your smears truthful.

      • Politics had nothing to do with it. I was trying not to get shot down, and she was posing for the cameras while sitting on a North Vietnamese anti-aircraft gun. I’m not able to forgive her for that.

        • The odd part, so hard for me to understand, is how you would have no problem with Westmoreland and the others who were putting you in harms way every day, when we now know that by then they knew it was unwinnable, yet you are not able to forgive her when what she was trying to do was end the madness and get you home. That sure sounds like politics to me.

          • Okay, this is hard to explain to someone who wasn’t there. When you are a combatant in a war zone your world gets very small. Your first priorities are to stay alive and not get captured. Your next priority is to get back home to family. Everything else is not a priority. We barely knew who Westmoreland was. As pilots we knew about Fonda’s visit to Hanoi. We knew quite a lot about the Americans imprisoned in the Hanoi Hilton, and that she had toured the prison. We knew there were war protests at home, but had no expectations that they would amount to anything. Our news source was mostly the Armed Forces Radio Network. Remember that we had no cell phones, Twitter, FaceBook, Skype, etc. Political debates in the U.S. had no immediate impact on us. Jane Fonda’s sudden appearance in support of North Vietnam did have an impact. We were shocked and angered that she would allow herself to become a propaganda tool for the North. War memories tend to fade away over time. But not the memory of laughing Jane Fonda sitting on that anti-aircraft gun just a few feet away from the Hanoi Hilton prison where our guys were being beaten and tortured. So no forgiveness. For me, it’s personal.

            • That is a touching and poignant description of your experience and understanding of the Jane Fonda incident in Viet Nam. And with context considerably different from your previous posts.

              I too was there, but I wasn’t indiscriminately bombing civilians in cities. I was aimlessly running up and down stupid little hills shooting at mostly phantom opposing soldiers, for no really good reason that I could see, nor could my buddies either. I was glad to hear that someone important was trying to do SOMETHING to shed some light on the stupidity that was happening and had been going on for over a decade, by that time.

              I would think that by now, you could set back and review how you too had bee tricked, or at least manipulated with false and misleading information about this incident and see it for what it was. A publicity stunt that contributed significantly to the American public turning against the war and ending it sooner than if it had not happened.

              Your hatred for this person is with misplaced justification and you need to reevaulate the circumstances and the real facts and then forgive her and yourself. After all the Viet Nam people have been able to do that about you and about me.

  9. Sorry, no matter how you feel about the war, Jane Fonda’s conduct was slap in the face to every POW/MIA in that conflict. She is the exemplar of the Anti-American Hollywood celebrity liberal left.

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