PUCKER UP…..KEY WEST LOVES LOVE

Today, St. Valentine’s Day. Lovers’ day.

The most personal expression of that love is the kiss.

There will be a mass kiss-in tonight at 6 in front of the Custom House. The second year for the event. A success last year in its first attempt. More than 250 couples participated. More than 500 expected this year.

The purpose of the event is to spread a message to the world. One of peace and love.

The Custom House invites everyone to pucker up at 6 tonight! No charge. Kissing free.

Last night was podcast time for me. I had to rework the program at the last minute. To accommodate the revelations that came out of the Senate Committee hearing involving the heads of U.S. intelligence agencies.

Everything disturbed me. The one the most was the fact that all those testifying agreed that Russia had hacked into the 2016 election, that they were prepared to do it again in 2018 and 2020, and that our government was doing nothing to prevent the anticipated 2018 and 2020 hackings.

Makes sense. Trump denies Russia did anything. God forbid he say anything negative about Putin. There is no leadership concerning the issue.

The 2018 elections around the corner. Looks like Russia will get away with meddling in the mid term elections. And no one seems to care enough to do something about it.

Hard to  understand.

Pads And Tampons And the Problem With Periods. The title of a bill before the Arizona Legislature. Up for a vote. One legislator sent it to committee. The legislative committee an all male one. Just the make up to deal with a female issue.

The problem arose because female prisoners were receiving only 12 thin pads a month to deal with menstruation. Apparently not enough. Especially for heavy flowers. Thicker pads and the addition of tampons required.

The cost measured at $80,000 a year. The bill introduced by a female legislator.

Women knocked the doors down to testify. Former inmates and not.

Their testimony fell on deaf ears. The bill died in committee.

The legislator who sent it to committee is receiving pads and tampons mailed to him at his home and office.

Interestingly, the Federal Bureau of Prisons was faced with the same problem last year. They dealt with it. A memo was issued compelling wardens to issue tampons, pads and panty liners at no cost to inmates.

Trump a deceptive person. Those around him become deceptive after a while. An example being Trump’s personal attorney Michael Cohen of many years and his handling of stripper Stormy Daniels claim of sexual harassment by Trump.

They allegedly had an affair of sorts several years before Trump’s election. She was going to go public with the information just before the election.

Daniels was paid $130,000 in settlement of any claims she might have had.

The question arises as to who paid Daniel’s the $130,000. Whose pocket did it come out of?

Cohen says he personally paid the money, not Trump. Daniels is silent. She is bound by a non-disclosure clause in the agreement evidencing the payment. If she speaks in any way, she has to return the $130,000.

It appears Cohen is covering Trump’s ass. In the meantime, he may have gotten his ass in a jam. One involving a violation of Campaign Finance Laws. Cohen’s payment could be considered an excess-in kind contribution.

Theodore Roosevelt is recognized as having been a tough guy. No wonder. Life molded him that way.

One of the formative events involved his wife and mother. Both died the same day. This day in 1884. His wife of a kidney ailment. His mother, typhoid fever.

Netanyahu and Trump are birds of a feather. Both thugs and bullies.

I have reported re Netanyahu’s possible arrest the past several months. Police recently advised they are recommending a corruption indictment against Netanyahu, including bribery. The claim is Israeli’s government has turned into a culture of corruption.

Not the Israel of yesteryear. Nor is Trump’s United States the same as before his election.

Enjoy your day! Kiss your wife, woman, partner!

 

A COOK I AM NOT

No question about it. I am not a cook. Last night proved my ineptness at culinary effort.

I enjoy stuffing. The kind you cook in a turkey or on stove top. I grabbed a bag of stuffing last week off the shelf at Publix. Figured I would cook myself up a meal of stuffing.

Thought it was all in the bag. Soon learned it was not. On the next trip to Publix, I bought the other items. Swanson soup, a big onion, diced celery, and butter. This was going to be a production!

Last night was the time! Poured myself a gin and proceeded.

Placed the ingredients on the cupboard. Took out a 5 quart pan. Directions said use a 3 quart one. I did not have a 3 quarter. Should not make a difference, I thought.

Diced the onion. With a paring knife. I did not tear. Thought I would. Melted 5 tablespoons of butter in the pan. Medium heat. Threw in the celery and onion. Let it cook till tender crisp, whatever that is. I waited till everything was turning brown. Then 2 cups of Swanson soup. Waited for it to boil. Threw in the bag of cubed bread. Then off the heat. Covered the pan for 5 minutes.

Followed all instructions precisely, except for size of the pan.

Time came to eat the concoction!

It was terrible!

The bread stuffing still half hard. Taste on the dry side.

I ate two small helpings. Could not handle any more. Threw the rest away. I was stuffed and uncomfortable.

It was an early bed night. My stomach full. There was a smell. It was me. Onions. This morning I went downstairs to the kitchen for a cup of coffee. My kitchen reeks of onion.

There has to me a lady out there to save me. I need one! For cooking and sex. Or, sex and cooking. The order immaterial.

Yesterday was Sloan first. I am trying to put together another show. One where I can sit at my computer at any time to talk and be seen. Could be 2 minutes or 20 minutes. Whatever moves me at the moment. The show archived, of course.

That is what we are working on. Any suggestions? If so, let me know.

Then Syracuse basketball. A disaster. I fear it may be that way all season. St. John’s beat us 84-72.

The zone is not working. Penetration through the middle easy. Forget rebounding. The team does not. Need a big man. Not this season, unfortunately. Too late.

The game was played at Madison Square Garden. St. John’s a former Big East foe.

Several great Syracuse players from the early years of the Big Eat were at the game. Sitting behind the Syracuse bench. Pearl Washington, Billy Owens, John Wallace, and Rafael Addison. I saw them all play back when.

Washington has brain cancer. Yesterday was one of his good days. He could be at the game and meet up again with other Syracuse greats.

Then this week’s KONK Life column. Used my research from last week which I shelved to do the Helen Sperling/Holocaust story. This week’s column titled The President Could Not Spell. About Teddy Roosevelt. He had a problem. No spell check back then. An interesting story re the way he tried to correct his problem and the flack that followed.

A fire yesterday in Key Largo. Someone gassing up his boat at a Tom Thumb. Mistakenly put the gasoline into the bilge opening rather than where it belonged. About 100 gallons came out the back end of the boat.

Firemen arrived. Tom Thumb and homes evacuated. Fire only consumed the boat and parts of Tom Thumb.

Mistakes happen. Sounds like a new boat owner involved.

The Crime Report section of today’s Key West Citizen carries a sad story. Concerns a 33 year old homeless man who stole a tent, shoes, fishing pole and some other items from K-Mart. He was caught.

He said the items were needed to make a home, etc.  for his pregnant girl friend who was getting out of jail today.

Keys History noted that on this day in 1888 construction began on the Custom House. Completed late in 1891. Cost $108,000.

Key West is fortunate to have such a fine building. The Custom House has a long list of famous events that took place there. It is an outstanding tourist attraction today. Well run.

Enjoy your day!

A SPRING BREAK BEACH

It was a bit overcast early yesterday afternoon. I decided to walk Smathers Beach. I forgot it was spring break time.

I must share an impression. I felt old. Even better, antiquated. They are all young! Very Young! I almost felt pedophilic looking at the young ladies.

Twenty five years ago when I first visited Key West, it was spring break time. The young ladies looked young, but still woman like. I was not ashamed to look.

Yesterday was different. They were too young looking. It was because I had become too old. At 79, a 20 year old looked like a high school teenager.

Bocce last night! We won all three games. We were not overjoyed, however. We killed the opposition in the first game. The next two were close and we could have lost either or both.

Why were we unhappy? The team we played had only won one game till last night. They still have won only one game, but made a fight of it against us.

With one exception, none of us was up to our usual ability. We sucked! Clare was the only shining light.

Captain David has been saying for three years that we play to our competitor’s level. A valid observation last night.

I was happily surprised at one point. Robert and Jake showed up. Robert was walking Jake. I was happy to see him. A hug and kiss are always good.

Jake surprised me. I had never seen him before with a number of other dogs around. Everyone brings their dog to bocce. Jake handled it well. Sniffing away, the dogs were friendly with each other.

A loyal blog reader is Marty from the Blue Ridge. He comments frequently. Engages with others in arguing some point raised in the blog.

Yesterday, I wrote about the Great Blizzard of 1888. Marty brought to my attention the Great Northeast Heat Wave of 1896. Extended from Chicago through New York and Boston. Lasted 10 days. The temperature above 90 degrees, day and night. There was no breeze. Some 1,500 died.

Living conditions in New York were deplorable for poor immigrant families. They lived 5-6 to a room, no air circulation and no running water.

The  heat wave was Theodore Roosevelt’s introduction to prominence. He was a little known Police Commissioner. He had ice distributed free from the police stations.

Tonight, dinner with June Hudson. I have been looking forward to it all week. We have known each other for over 20 years. However since her husband Bill died two years ago, we have seen little of each other.

Enjoy your day!

 

THEODORE ROOSEVELT: THE PHRASE MAKER

A walk back in history…..

 

Theodore Roosevelt. Unquestionably a great President! He also had a way with words. Gems. Some that he uttered have stayed with us over the years. A phrase maker he was!

 

Roosevelt was the first to call the White House a “bully pulpit.” Roosevelt recognized the great stage that was the White House. How it could be used to make a President’s views known worldwide.

 

Roosevelt was confronted with an uncontrolled corporate America. Perhaps as we face today. He went after corporate America and forced it to get in line. He referred to his way of going after the corporations as “…speak softly and carry a big stick.” He did!

 

Political lunacy existed in Roosevelt’s day, also. The extremists in each political party. He referred to them as the “…lunatic fringe.”

 

Roosevelt was asked in 1912 if he was going to run for the Presidency again. He said, “My hat is in the ring.”

 

The phrase actually originated in the Old West. Roosevelt was familiar with it and made it popular. In the West of old if a boxer was ready to take on all challengers, he would toss his hat into the boxing ring.

 

Last but not least is a Roosevelt gem that was born in 1907. Roosevelt was at the Hermitage visiting the Tennessee home of Andrew Johnson. He was served coffee.  He drank it down and exclaimed, “Good to the last drop!” The coffee was a local brew. It came from one of Nashville, Tennessee’s leading hotels. The Maxwell House. Within a decade of Roosevelt’s exclamation, the Maxwell House used his words to turn its coffee into a national brand. To this day. “Good to the last drop!”

 

I hope you have enjoyed this walk down history lane.

 

FRIDAY NIGHT WITH JENNA

A very pleasant evening with Jenna last night. Dinner and the movies.

Dinner at Outback. It was a stretch to stay on my diet. However, I made it.

The movie was American Sniper starring Bradley Cooper. Excellent! Received six Academy Award nominations. I can understand why.

The movie was first shown for a full weekend last week. Grossed over $100 million. This being the second week, I assumed the theater would not be crowded. I was wrong. Not a seat left in the house. Jenna and I had to sit in the fourth row. The spread of the screen was wider than my eyes could encompass.

Jenna has a new Audi. Big and sleek. Black. With Jenna behind the wheel, it looks like the car was made for her.

The history portion of the Key West Citizen mentions Sally Rand. A fan dancer in days of old. Made 26 movies from 1925-1938. Danced at the World’s Fair in 1933. Danced for the astronauts and their wives at a Right Stuff party in the late 1960s.

More importantly, she was a part time resident of Key West.

I met Sally Rand. Enjoyed 10 private minutes with her. It was 1964. I was at a Police Conference PBA convention at Grossinger’s in the Catskills. I was counsel to the organization at the time. Rand did her famous fan dance for the conventioneers.

Afterwards, there was a private cocktail party. I was there. She was there. I got roughly 10 minutes alone with her. Which meant we were so engrossed in whatever we were talking about that no one interrupted.

She was on in her years. Still the perfect body. The face showing a bit of aging. The aging was not apparent while she was performing. Whether the distance of the stage or make up, I do not know.

I was 29 years old at the time. I found her exciting. I wish I could remember what we talked about.

The Key West Craft Show this weekend. On Whitehead in the area of Caroline. One of Key West’s top events. About 150 white tents with various hand made items for sale. I bought my first Jack Baron years ago at the Show. A black Madonna and Child.

Syracuse/Miami at 4. Syracuse a 3 1/2 point favorite. I don’t know. I have no opinion. I will be watching the game. I am not sure from where.

About six weeks ago, I wrote a column for KONK Life concerning Theodore Roosevelt. Somehow, I lost it in the computer’s never never land. Somehow, it reappeared this week. The article is Theodore Roosevelt the Phrase Maker. It publishes next Wednesday in KONK Life. It has already been posted on Facebook.

I have concluded that the battle against GMOs has been lost. The only fight left is labeling. While the world slept, the international food corporations snuck genetically modified seed grown foods into our diets.

Seventy countries presently grow, import and/or use genetically modified foods. All of north and central America. Only two countries in south America forbid it. France, Germany, Russia, Hungary, Greece and Poland oppose. The tide is obvious however.

Certain central American and south American countries have fought and continue to fight the use of GMOs legislatively and in the courtrooms. With a degree of success. However, giants such as Monsanto fight back in appellate courts. In the meantime, GMOs move ahead in those countries.

We were not vigilant. Some may have been. Others did not pay attention.

My concern and opposition was based on the fact that no one knows the long term consequences of eating such foods. In the next 10-20 years, we will find out.

Enjoy your Sunday!