2019 January

Friday, January 25, 2019

Letters to the editor with pictures since 0202. Published on Big Pine Key’s garbage days, Tuesdays and Fridays.


[Christmas Giving] Coconuts Bar and Package store staff, customers and friends on Big Pine Key have once again raised money collected on the annual Christmas Tree (and matched by Coconuts) for the locals in need. Shown here is owner, Meri-Lynn Britz, presenting a check for $1000 to Marty Mara, the coordinator for St. Peter Community Food Bank, along with volunteers Debbie Martins, Vickie Zemaitis, and Virginia Gaster. They were celebrating the 1st Anniversary of the Food Bank, which has been a huge help to those in need, especially those impacted by Hurricane Irma.

[Friday Joke] At a wedding ceremony the pastor said, “If anyone has anything to say concerning the union of the bride and groom It is their time to stand up and speak or forever hold their peace.” The moment of utter silence was broken by a young beautiful woman carrying a baby. She stood up and started walking slowly towards the pastor. Everything quickly turned to chaos. The bride dropped the bouquet and burst out crying. Then slowly the groom’s mother fainted. The best men started giving each other looks and wondering how best to help save the situation. The pastor asked the woman, “Can you tell us why you came forward. What do you have to say?”

There was absolute silence in the church. The woman replied, “We can’t hear at the back.”




[Georgia Cracker] When traveling through the low lands of southern Georgia we stopped at a roadside table with a bunch of peaches on it for sale. I asked the cracker how much for a peach and he said 3 for a dollar. I asked how much for one and he said twenty-five cents. What was even odder is that his big dog was lying next to the table–dead. I told him his dog was looking mighty poorly and he said, “yeah, he’s dead.” That was it. He walked away and we drove away.

[Sarcasm] Sometimes it physically hurts to hold in my sarcastic comments.


[Speed Limit] I saw in the paper that several tickets were given to speeders in Big Pine. Depending on the time of the ticket, it may not stand up in court. The sign states 45 mph and 35 at night. If someone was going 45 at 6 in the morning they aren’t breaking the law as the posted limit says 35 at night–not morning. The signs should be replaced and say 35 DARK then there will be no room for argument as to when night is.

Woods Electric LLC 305-395-1071 Business Directory > Electricians
[Divided Country] Like it or not, he’s the man in charge. And I have to say, so far I agree with almost every decision he has made. Some of those decisions have been very controversial, and I know a lot of people don’t like him, but he has surrounded himself with some of the greatest and most talented people in the world. There is absolutely no denying his amazing leadership qualities and I’m confident that history will judge him as one of the best, if not the very best this country has ever seen. I know not everyone is going to agree with me, but these are just a few of the reasons I support Bill Belichick. Go Pats!



[“Name that skull”] It is a deer skull. A doe. Note the lack of bony knobs where antlers would emerge.

[Draft Women] Should women be required to register for the draft? Commission likely to recommend big changes. A congressional commission is considering a range of proposals, from eliminating the draft to making women eligible to requiring public service of all. Ladies, time to put your big girl panties on. Video
The next meeting of our Big Pine Computer Club is coming up this Saturday, January 26, 10 am at the Senior Center.  Our tables will be set up at the east end of the building that morning, as we will be sharing the room with the annual health fair pre-registration group. See, you can get healthy and learn how to work your smartphone at the same time. Full Menu > Ongoing Events

[The Captain Conch Splatter Shield] Every time I whip boiled potatoes, they splatter all over me, the wall, the bottom of the mixer, and the counter. I used a taller pan, but it wasn’t tall enough. Last night I cut a hole in a plastic cutting mat and put the beaters through it. It’s easy to clean and I can store it with my cookie sheets. Next I’m going to cut a clear mat in a circle and poke two holes in the center for less splatter and more visibility. Shark Tank, watch out, I’m on my way!

[“Lose dogs”] I was in Walgreens last week. A man had a dog on a leash, but he let the dog wander all over the store dragging the leash. People should show a little respect for others. Just because you love your dog doesn’t automatically mean others do.
[“Loose dogs”] If dogs run free, why not we? Please lighten up on the dogs, man. It is the Keys! Link
[“Who was responsible for hiring C & R Milling & Paving”] This response came today, regarding my post sent to the CT.   I did not send the message to Paulette Summers. There might be hope yet! I’m glad to now have her e-mail address:
Thank you for your inquiry expressing safety concerns regarding this on-going FDOT construction project.  Please note that this project is divided into two distinct sections, with limits along Overseas Highway that run from east of Cudjoe Key (MM 23.101) to east of Summerland Key (MM 26.265) and west of North Johnson Rd. (Upper Sugarloaf Key) (MM 19.805) to east of Bow Channel Bridge (Cudjoe Key) (MM 20.686). The project’s Prime Contractor is General Asphalt, who hired C&R Milling, an FDOT approved subcontractor.The project is expected to be completed during March of this year, as paving activities progress. The safety of commuters and general users of the roadway is paramount to the Department and all Contractors are required to follow stringent rideability and testing requirements and/or guidelines when restriping travel lanes.As the project is being conducted in phases, the installation of the initial layer is completed, is followed by a second layer and so on.  After each layer, the roadway is restriped for safety reasons and to alert drivers of the lane configuration.  My project team has advised that the final pavement layer (known as the friction course) has not yet been placed on this project.  There are two asphalt applications remaining in this section, which upon completion, will result in a smoother roadway and include final pavement markings and stripes.

Thank you for your patience as the Contractor continues the construction activities required to keep traffic moving as smoothly as possible. I hope I have addressed your concerns.  However, please don’t hesitate to call me if you have additional questions or concerns, as I would be happy to be of assistance.
Thank you and best regards,

Paulette Ridgard Summers
Community Outreach Specialist/Business Development Manager
Media Relations Group, LLC
14707 South Dixie Highway, Suite 404 Miami, FL 33176
Office: 305-254-8598, Direct: 786-607-3003, Cell: 786-510-3921,


[River of Trash] Thinking of going to Haiti on vacation? Video

[Student vs Indian] The boys from the Catholic school in town for a pro life rally were in no way the aggressors in the confrontation in my opinion.  The Black Israelite’s were the initial aggressors and our hero, Nathan, stepped in to also taunt the boys because they were wearing MAGA (Make America Great Again) hats.



Potassium iodide is also used for the iodization of salt, a public health measure to prevent iodine deficiency in populations that get little seafood.

[Wisdom] Do not save what is left after spending; instead spend what is left after saving.  ~Warren Buffett
[FTR: Monroe is a Republican County] Deer Friends, these are troubling times.  It doesn’t matter if you’re a Democrat or Republican or No Party Affiliation, our society is in more turmoil than it has been in in my entire life.  Hate and rancor is the new political currency of the day.  It has to be tamped down.  The consequences of it ramping up are horrible to contemplate.

It’s been said that all politics are local, and that is a solid truth.  It is no secret that I’m a staunch conservative and longtime member of the Republican party.  My wife and I have been proud members of the Marathon Republican Club for years.  Sadly, we are preparing to depart the Keys for Tennessee to be closer to family, and so have stepped aside from that great organization.

Now, the Marathon Republican Club, through it’s new President, Phil Goodman, is anxious to expand its membership.  Phil and the club members are calm friendly people, not firebrands, not haters.  They are anxious to calm the boiling waters of political controversy, to return respect to political dialogue.  The meetings are held once a month at a Marathon restaurant during the early evening hours, they are informal and pleasant.  The members are cordial and hospitable.  We’ll miss every one of them very much, we’ve made great friends.

Phil is especially interested in seeking new members that reside in District 2, the areas of Big Pine, The Torches, all the way to Cudjoe.   If you really want to make a difference in how our District is governed, I suggest that you join the Marathon Republican Club.  Our County Commissioner, Michelle Coldiron, is a member, and there is no better way to communicate with her than face to face at a club meeting.   Plus, several other elected County officials are members, generally, each elected official will give us a briefing as to what is going on in their sphere of influence.  If you want to actually make change in how our District is governed, here is your chance.  Please give Phil Goodman a call at 305-600-8441 or email him at   middlekeysrepublicanclub@

Deer Friends here in the Keys being a Conservative or a Republican is really the norm, not an anomaly here in paradise.  Check out the Monroe County Supervisor of Elections Office.  As of this writing, there are 53,339 registered voters in Monroe County.   Of those,  21,002 are registered Republicans.   17,393 are Democrats, and 14,994 are “others.” ~FTR

[Movie “Dive the Keys”] Wednesday, January 30 / Thursday, January 31. This is a story of 4 people who got dive certified in Marathon. Two are local residents, and two who came down to Marathon specifically to get certified. Follow this dramatic movie showing what happens when locals get dive certified in the Keys. Advance tickets at




Apparently some things just need to come with instructions.

[Fake News] There is lots of fake news out there. You can expose it all you want but remember what the great sage Paul Simon said in the Boxer: “A man hears what he wants to hear and disregards the rest.”



[Gay Adoption] Gay male penguins get a baby penguin in Australian aquarium. Link

[Friday Joke] The Wall. A journalist went to the Western Wall and watched an old man pray and after about 45 minutes, when he turned to leave, using a cane and moving very slowly, she approached him for an interview.
“Sir, how long have you been coming to the Western Wall and praying?”
“For about 60 years.”
“60 years! That’s amazing! What do you pray for?”
“I pray for peace between the Christians, Jews, and the Muslims. I pray for all the wars and all the hatred to stop. I pray for all our children to grow up safely as responsible adults and to love their fellow man. I pray that politicians tell us the truth and put the interests of the people ahead of their own interests, and I pray that everyone will be happy”.
“How do you feel after doing this for 60 years?”
“Like I’m talking to a brick wall.”
Lose dogs sink shopping carts and so do stinking brats in diapers who leave skid marks where I have to put my food! Next time I am going to call a cop and press charges for skid marks. People don’t give a damn any more, so why should I?


Where does United Way gets its money to do all the good they do? United Way may receive endowments, grants, government funding, direct donations and service fees. In addition, locally raised money often provides match money from other state and federal sources and other funding partners.

[Redux] Come to the USA  ~Ray Stevens Video


[Divided We Fall] People have let their political ideologies get in the way of truth. I got read a complaint listing a major newspaper as a purveyor of fake news. That paper has received 22 Pulitzer Awards for it’s ‘fake news’. The political direction we’re taking is not making America great. I thought America was more than the economy.

[Government Shutdown cost to Our Waters] The partial government shutdown hits close to home for us, as our key partner, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is one of the impacted agencies. The hard-working public servants who we work with at NOAA are responsible for protecting endangered and threatened species and the marine sanctuaries and monuments that are their homes, managing fisheries important to our coastal communities, and exploring our ocean to learn more about its unique ecosystems and species. The impacts of the shutdown on our ocean and Great Lakes appear invisible to many because they happen under the water’s surface and are not immediate, but they are growing every day and with long-term impacts Link
[“I want Arby’s”] Are you kidding? That salt laden, processed garbage is only fit for the dumpster. Go to Bucktooth Rooster if you want quality food, cooked right, and with the largest portions I’ve ever seen. They don’t have plates, they have platters! Arby’s serves lunch meat that they tell you is roast beef. That ‘roast beef’ hasn’t seen a cow in years.


Last Monday was Martin Luther King Day…yawn.

Toby Keith explains how Clint Eastwood inspired ‘Don’t Let the Old Man In’ for ‘The Mule’. Link


[Free Local Tax Preparation] United Way of the Florida Keys is offering 2 free tax preparation options for Monroe County residents with limited incomes. The VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program assists qualified taxpayers with completion of their annual tax return, to ensure that families receive every available benefit, and offers online, easy to complete tax returns. Press Release UWFK VITA Dates Scheduled 1-2019

[“Fluoride is poison”] Somebody posted that it was a myth that Nazis fluoridated concentration camp water to help pacify inmates. Selling industrial waste instead of proper disposal is highly profitable, and you can find plenty of websites declaring fluoride safe and healthy. But follow the money. There is plenty of money in promoting fluoride but none in exposing it for what it is–poison. The Nuremburg Trials of Nazi war criminals exposed the fluoridation plot, along with other Nazi medical experiments on prisoners. TruthWiki is one website that declares fluoridation pacification is not a myth. They also cite sources in this very informative article. Link
[Friday Joke] A man and woman were married for many years. Whenever there was a confrontation, yelling could be heard deep into the night. The old man would shout, “When I die, l will dig my way up and out of the grave and come back and haunt you for the rest of your life! Neighbors feared him. The old man liked the fact that he was feared. Then he died. After the burial, her neighbors, concerned for her safety, asked, “Aren’t you afraid that he may indeed he able to dig his way out of the grave and haunt you for the rest of your life? The wife said, “Let him dig. I had him buried upside down and I know he wont ask for directions.”




Angel Falls, Venezuela. Link

[“Lose dogs”] Dogs with their owners was a Keys thing before the northern changers came. I remember when dogs were allowed in Turtle Kraals until a drunk tourist tripped over one. She came, she fell, she made lives hell. I remember the owner of Billy’s on Summerland complaining about the dogs at his outdoor bar (remember Billy’s?). Now we’re hearing whining about dog allergies. Stay home. The Keys have changed and not for the good. The people are mean, the water turned green. It’s a lot quieter up here in America the woods.


One man and a helper taking down a concrete silo with sledge hammers. Skip to 11:45 for the final fall and dance. Up to then it’s just chip, chip, chip with a sledge or two. That was one seriously undercut silo before it fell. Good solid construction. Video

[“Indian standoff”] The Indian group started the whole thing. Watch the the entire 22 min. tape. It’s a whole different story than the 45 second clip that CNN aired. The kids were the heroes. And the Indian Vietnam vet never served in Nam. He was in service at the time of the war but not in Vietnam.
[“Price gouging gas’s negative effect”] I never though of the money lost to Big Pine business by those of us who buy gas in Marathon and all the shopping we do while we’re there. I know of others who shop in Marathon while buying their cheaper gas. That’s got to be a lot of money leaving this island’s economy. The Chamber of Commerce should try to get the BPK gas stations to lower their prices to match Marathon; or does the Chamber of Commerce just have business socials.




[Winn Dixie] Weekly ad. Link

[New Street Signs] I think it is about time that public works for Monroe County replace the street signs. There are enough County workers in the Public Works Department that can handle this.  These workers are not out cutting our grass or cleaning the public restrooms so much that they cannot find time to replace the street signs. It is no wonder that the tourists/snowbirds get lost constantly when there are no street signs telling them what street they are on.

If a County department head reads this post they ought to tell the department head of Public Works to get on the stick!




A day without tacos won’t kill you, but why take the chance!

Gee, think the country is divided?


[“Who was responsible for hiring the paver on MM 20-23”] As the project is being conducted in phases, the installation of the initial layer is completed, is followed by a second layer and so on.  After each layer, the roadway is restriped for safety reasons and to alert drivers of the lane configuration.  My project team has advised that the final pavement layer (known as the friction course) has not yet been placed on this project.  There are two asphalt applications remaining in this section, which upon completion, will result in a smoother roadway and include final pavement markings and stripes.

[Propaganda] The receptivity of the masses is very limited and their intelligence is small. All effective propaganda must be limited to a few points and must harp on these in slogans until the last member of the public understands what you want him to understand.  ~Adolf Hitler (Mein Kampf)