2020 January

Friday, January 3, 2020

Letters to the editor with pictures since 2002. Published on Big Pine Key’s garbage days, Tuesdays and Fridays.

[Dying Reef] Problem solving is a 3 step process. 1. Identify the problem, 2. Identify the solution, 3. Implement the solution.
Tuesday’s Coconut Telegraph had several posts lamenting the death of our coral reefs and in particular Looe Key. Thanks very much for sharing the information provided, and in particular, the dive videos from the 1980’s vs. 2008. Also the link to Dr. Brian Lapointe’s summary report showing degrading water quality over 30 years, and linking it to the death of Looe Key coral.When discussing dying coral reefs with experts, and there are many, it always comes down to degrading water quality. More specifically it is excess nutrients, and most specifically excess nitrogen in the water.

So it appears we know what the problem is. There are undoubtedly other things that are unhealthy for coral reefs, but excess nitrogen in the water is the big problem. Among experts it has been known for some time. So the number 1 problem has been identified.

Centralized waste water treatment in the lower Keys was identified as a solution and recently implemented. Has this helped reduce nitrogen levels in the water at Looe Key? Don’t know. Are discharges of nitrogen from Miami or the Everglades overwhelming any benefits from the new lower Keys sewage treatment? Don’t know.

Will the $1.6 billon Everglades project scheduled to be implemented over the next 8 years help? It is designed to reduce the damaging discharges from Lake Okeechobee to the east and west coasts of Florida. But it will also send 120 billion gallons of water south to the Everglades and Florida Bay every year. 120,000,000,000 more gallons of clean water a year to Florida Bay sounds great. But how clean? How much nitrogen will be in it? How many other nutrients? Will it help or hurt the Keys water quality. Don’t know.

Where else might the excess nitrogen at Looe Key be coming from? Don’t know. Are there any other solutions identified and/or being implemented to reduce nitrogen levels at Looe Key? Don’t know. This inquiring mind would like to know.

[Pythons Are On Big Torch!] I’m a biologist living on Little Torch Key and have been presented with pictures taken this week of two different snakes. I’ve identified both as Burmese Pythons. These are swimmers, and the sightings occurred on Big Torch Key and Little Torch Keys respectively. No creature is safe from these killers, including Key Deer! If you see a large snake on land or sea, they must be run over and killed. In Miami, a recently trapped 150-pound Burmese Python was bearing 74 eggs!

Our former Keys biologist has reportedly moved from the Keys. Please alert mainland hunters immediately of this serious threat to the Florida Keys.

[Resolution] This 2020 I will stop apologizing for being me.
[Shun Marine Sanctuary] “We urge FKNMS to address shoreline-based fish feeding that attracts tarpon.” Really? No, I mean really, really? Fangman and her crew need to go! It’s bad enough the locals have been run off, treasure hunting limited, heck even a harmless toke and a ride down US1 has become a thing of the past. Now the government wants to stop interaction from the shoreline. Force these 20 year-and-outers from the Keys. Don’t associate with them. Don’t let your kids play with their kids. Don’t fix their cars, boats or planes – just let them sit broken until they are forced to bring a stooge down from the mainland. It’s time to shun them at every turn.
Harsh you say? What have they done? The last two losers who ran FKNMS were hauled out and reassigned, the reasoning redacted from public knowledge. We don’t need FKNMS to fix the water – they’ve proven they can’t. Same with the reef, it’s 100% worse since 2013, much less when Billy Causey and the rest formed the pile of government grifters allowing them to take and take and take. All the taking has saved s**t. Now they’re preaching they have a $97 million dollar idea. That idea is to fund their jobs is what it is. It’s time to resist the government stiffs and give the project to Mote Marine and the locals who work on restoration, not closing areas. I really miss the old Florida Keys bcause the new version sucks all the way around. Imported people, imported fish, fake fun stuff to do, it’s become a carnival ride instead of the old fishing, boating, fun place it was. Get out of here FKNMS. Go save the crap elsewhere. Quit taking what’s not yours! Defund FKNMS and its employees today!The Keys already have too much of two things: tourists and government intervention. The proposed fish-feeding ban is foolish. Link




Happy 20th. Anniversary to my lovely bride. It’s amazing what can happen when someone sits down next to you in a crowded bar.

[“Bottled Water ingests microplastic particles”] Drinking tap water (except Flint MI’s) is a lot better for you than drinking it out of a plastic bottle. Our tap water is safe. I put a filter on the cold water side of our kitchen faucet, but that is just to improve the taste. Miami has some of the best tasting water in the US. I know some of you don’t like to see that kind of writing because it goes against your pre-conceived notions, but a fact is a fact.



[The Last Bargain] I bought this Thomasville chest at the Big Pine flea market for only $50. In less than an hour I washed it, stained the chips and scratches, and shined it with furniture polish.

[Friday Jokes] “Wyoming Is Boring” – Karen Rontowski. This lady is really funny. Video
[Friday Joke] I did a little mechanic work today. I put a rear end in a recliner.
[Guns] I was very surprised to read the Associated Press article printed in the Citizen on Tuesday which put a whole different spin on the usual “guns must be banned” theme. To quote the AP, “A gunman who killed two people during a Texas church service was fatally shot within seconds by armed congregants, said Texas officials, who hailed the state’s gun laws that allow weapons in places of worship.”
Finally we are shown what happens when a would-be mass shooting event occurs when the bad guy picks a place where the intended victims are not defenseless. I also like that the murder’s name was not printed. No notoriety for this sicko with a shotgun–just instant hot lead holes from multiple defending citizens who carried guns to church. Forget “turning the other cheek” in this Texas church. It’s “What you sow, so shall you reap” and his harvest of karma was instant. Sweet! And no costly trial and long incarceration at public expense. If more stories like this were in the daily news, maybe it would discourage attempts at mass shootings. Predators of all species like defenseless victims.
[Don’t ‘Water’ The Manatees] Manatees are protected, so watering, feeding, petting, riding upon are all illegal. Just like with dolphins. While I appreciate your love for Florida’s wildlife, they are not here for you, they were here before you and hopefully here after you. Do you feed Key deer, too? (Deer Ed, track the ISP of this genius and send the hit squad).
For the record, locals should shoot iguanas. They are not protected and make great tacos and the leftover carcass is great crab bait. Video
[Marine Sanctuary] Now they want to stop us from feeding fish! Are they crazy? Do they stay awake at night thinking of what else they can prohibit? They won’t be happy until they stop all humans from using any part of the ocean or mangrove islands. They don’t do anything besides having endless meetings in order to close more of the marine areas and they like to place big expensive advertisements in the newspapers. The do-nothing Sanctuary is a joke. What have they done to improve the reef and water quality? Nada. How much have they spent? A lot.



[Brain Damaged] I’ve come to the conclusion that the Keys are now inhabited by folks who were raised on Wonder Bread, boiled ham, American cheese and mayo sandwiches, instead of dolphin, tuna, wahoo and Key West pinks.

[“Dying Reef Video”] Wow! Thanks for sharing. Having been a diver from 1973 until Irma, I’d seen the slow decay, but the video really drives the point home. My only question is if fertilizer and runoff from the mainland is killing the Keys reefs, what’s killing the reefs of the Bahamas? There’s not as many tropical fish around either. No more angels, banded coral shrimp, barracuda ya da ya da ya da . Thanks again for the video. It was nice to hear breathing [SCUBA] underwater again.
[Abusing Taxpayers] No candidate’s re-election material or time should be subsidized by our taxes.
Hells Angel confronts Hunter S Thompson on stage. Video


[Marine Sanctuary] Mote Marine, The Nature Conservancy, Reef Relief and other grass roots environmental organizations have done far more to save the environment that the Marine Sanctuary has. I would like someone from the Sanctuary to tell us on the CT in a few words (not some bureaucratic volume) how they have saved anything in the 20 years of their existence. I would like them to write in and say “We have saved the reef and cleaned up the water.” That’s not going to happen because they haven’t done anything of consequence.

[Fear] When even one American—who has done nothing wrong —is forced by fear to shut his mind and close his mouth—then all Americans are in peril.  ~Harry S. Truman
Hareen’s Suncare & Hats is on line at Facebook. Say hey!
[Notice Of My Intention To Leave The Coconut Telegraph] It may or may not be disappointing to some people to know that I have decided to leave this page, I am sick and tired of the constant criticisms and purile remarks about things that have nothing to do with anyone else but me.
Okay, so I like dressing-up in rubber clothes. So what? And my culinary tastes might seem strange to some people, but I have particular penchant for cucumbers. Which brings me to the matter of my sexual preferences, which I know might seem strange to some people, but group sex with dwarfs, midgets, and pygmies is only a ‘small’ perversion compared to the other matter. And the judge was particularly understanding when I explained that running naked through our local park wearing crotchless fluffy underwear on my head and brandishing a rubber toy in each hand is an ancient pagan custom and…Oh shit! Wrong Page!
Please ignore all of the above. Happy New Year. Stay inappropriate.
[Fatal Delivery] UPS Airlines Flight 6 crashes. Video


[Seven Mile Christmas Tree] This is the only picture I was able to take of the Seven Mile Christmas tree. I don’t think anyone has a picture of it all lit up. There’s just no way to take it. I’m surely not going to stop on the bridge.

[Friday Joke] I was having trouble with my computer and  called my 13 year-old son to help me. He clicked a couple of buttons and fixed it. As he was walking back to his room I asked him what the problem was. He said, “It was an ID ten T issue”. Not wanting to sound stupid, but curious in case I had the same problem again, I asked him what an ID ten T was. “Write it down” he said. So I did: IDI0T. He never was my favorite child anyway.



[Friday joke] This morning I rear ended a car at a stop light.  The owner got out and he was a dwarf. He looked at me and said, “I am not happy.” I said, “Well, which one are you then?” That’s when the fight started.

[Food Delivery] Ever heard of GoldBelly? “Gourmet food, food gifts & mail order foods shipped nationwide.” Link



The Feast of something is coming up on January 9, I think, That’s when the 3 wise men came from Miami, following the star, to Big Pine Key where the baby Jesus was laying in a manger or something. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Imagine how strong our country would be if our elected officials spent their day working for the people who elected them instead of the people who buy them.


[Tax Prep Volunteers Wanted] United Way of the Florida Keys is seeking volunteers to assist with a free tax preparation program for households with limited incomes in Monroe County. Volunteers are needed to work as IRS-certified tax prep assistants or greeters. Bilingual volunteers are especially needed as tax prep assistants, greeters or translators.  Volunteer training takes place on January 10 in Key West or January 11 in Marathon. Please contact or 305-735-1929

[Streaming and the Environment] How streaming and other data demands take a toll on the environment. Link