Letters to the editor with pictures since 2002. Published on Big Pine Key’s garbage days, Tuesdays and Fridays.
|[Sanctuary] If you are not paying attention to what the Sanctuary people are trying to do you better be prepared to sell your boat because you won’t have anywhere to go. They want to close just about any place we like to go. If you thought that, at first, when they closed the offshore beaches and islands that would have been the end of it. We were wrong, it was just the beginning of their closures. In the twenty years they’ve been here the Sanctuary hasn’t done one thing that has showed results that made the water and coral any better. Not one thing. As a matter of fact, it has gotten worse under their guidance. The waters are murky and the reef is almost dead. For twenty years the Sanctuary has only held meetings where the charter boat industry members make the rules. The charter boat captains run the Sanctuary and pass rules that only favor them. Their latest round of rules will exclude regular boaters and only charter boats will be able to fish and dive with their customers. This includes the backcountry flats fisherman who don’t want us using “their” precious resource.
|Steven Fulton Haddaway, age 68, passed away on October 17, 2019 surrounded by his family. Steve was a proud Air Force Veteran and avid fisherman. He retired from BellSouth after 30 years of employment. Steve loved living in the Florida Keys and was happiest when surrounded by friends with a cold beer in his hand. Steve is survived by his daughter – Johnice, son-in-law – James, granddaughters – Amber and Rori, his brother – Ron, his niece – Dawn, his great nieces and nephew – Josh, Alyssa and Collin, and his extended family Maureen and Lenny. Steve will be remembered by his family and friends on Saturday, November 16, 2019 at 4:30pm at KiKi’ Sandbar and Grill, 183 Barry Ave, Little Torch Key at 4:30pm. Refreshments and food will follow. Please bring your favorite ‘Steve memories’ to share and wear your favorite fishing or ‘fish’ shirt.
My dad loved living in the keys and missed it greatly the last 3 years. ~email@example.com
|[“Winn Dixie DJ”] I thought the DJ Saturday morning a bit unorthodox but isn’t that what they were trying to do? Shake things up? I liked it and couldn’t help shaking it a bit when no one was looking until a cashier came booging down the aisle; I had to shake it a little with her. One thing could have been better. He should have stuck to disco. That’s the stuff that got everyone moving. That other stuff stunk. Weather you like disco or not you can’t help moving to it. After all, the disco beat is the beat of your heart—literally.
Monday is Veterans Day. Give a veteran a little lovin’.
|[Barbarians in Mexico] Relatives say at least nine U.S. citizens, including six children, who live in a Mormon community in northern Mexico were killed Monday in a hail of gunfire. The family has said they suspect it may have been a case of mistaken identity by drug cartel gunmen.
Family members told “CBS This Morning” that the FBI has opened an investigation into the killings. It happened Monday near the town of Bavispe, about 100 miles south of the Arizona border. The victims all left their community at the same time in three separate cars, some were traveling back to the U.S., some to a neighboring town for a wedding. Video
|[Working with Bureaucrats] That is a very interesting article on aerial thermal imaging of the Key Deer. I am shocked it was denied. That is cutting edge technology and hopefully given a similar situation in the future it will be not only allowed but welcomed
|The USFWS will be closing Boca Grande Key, Woman Key, and the Marquesas Keys in Key West National Wildlife Refuge from November 8-10, 2020. All beach access will be closed to the public to protect wildlife and critical habitat from disturbance. These islands are all part of the Federal Wilderness System. Historically there has been extreme disturbance from boaters at this time of year in these areas and these closures aim to eliminate such impacts. This is the same closure we enforced last year for this event.
|[Bicycle Riding 101] What the heck is wrong with adults on bikes not knowing the basic rules? So many of the cyclists traveling from US 1 through No Name Key ride on the wrong side of the road, and a lot of times in the road and not the bike lane at all. When passing while maintaining your driving lane, they look at you like, “I’m the only person on the road, the only one who is important, so move over whether I’m breaking the law or not.” Sometimes they even swear at you and/or flip you the bird! Did these riders just learn to ride a bike, did the rules change, or are they just ignorant? I’m going with the latter. These non-rule abiders are putting themselves and motorists in danger of being involved in an accident.
Bicyclists need to follow the same rules of the road as drivers! All drivers are to yield to pedestrians when following rules and laws. However, bicyclists not following proper road rules are at fault just like drivers. Example, driver pulling out of complex making a righthand turn. Drivers look left to make sure oncoming traffic is clear and go. Now you have a family bicycling coming on your right (because they are riding against traffic and not with traffic) and the driver does not see them and bam! Driver is following traffic laws and bicyclist is not, now driver has to live rest of life with hurting, possibly crippling or killing someone. So straight to point….anyone driving or riding need to follow all traffic rules and laws period—even if they’re on vacation
[The Computer Monster] After 15 years of data capturing and writing, I clicked on the wrong button and poof, all gone in a nano second. Sure, I backed up the files, but that too vanished. Computers suck!
|[Friday Joke] Did you know on the Canary Islands there is not one canary? And on the Virgin Isles? Same thing – not one canary there either!
Happy Veteran’s Day. My father always wanted his story to be told. Remembering all who gave, and some who gave all. Thank you for my freedom. Link
|[Sewers A Farce] The somewhat hidden agenda has been and still is to remove the Keys from the Area of Critical Sate Concern designation. In 1998, the EPA found that all Keys waters were impaired by excess nutrients, and all Keys waters were placed on the EPA’s mandated 303(d) list. The blame was conveniently placed by local and Florida governments as being septic tanks, in spite of EPA sponsored research that showed that septic tank nutrients that may escape your lot cannot possibly affect the reefs. So we got central sewers forced upon us.
But even before central sewers were actually installed, the FL DEP accepted the plan to go to central sewers as reasonable assurance that water quality would improve. So they declared that except for canals, nearly all Keys waters were suddenly not impaired. EPA bought that bizarre reasoning and consequently the Keys waters were de-listed from the 303(d) impaired waters list. Retroactively, at that! This is akin to telling Mr. Clean, “You are not really bald now because you plan to use a lotion that is purported to grow hair.” Those of us that have been here since 1998 know all too well that water quality has dramatically deteriorated since then. And that includes canals that used to be quite clear and full of algae-munching parrotfish and other tropicals.Now we have treatment plants that mostly use shallow injection wells that are intended to deliver their injectate directly to the reefs. This is too crazy to just make up. But just as bizarre is that expert witnesses actually testify to the above in defense of shallow wells and slick lawyers manage to convince a judge that it is an improvement and will not harm water quality anywhere. Anybody with eyes that look into the water that has looked over years have seen the truth.
Post proscribed burn report. November post fire press release
|The next meeting of the Big Pine Computer Club is coming up this Saturday, November 9, 10 am at the senior center. Hope to see you there. Open to all. Full Menu > Ongoing Events
|The Big Pine Flea Market opens November 23. New management and it’s been cleaned up from Irma. Fish fry will be back opened too.
|[Television] The youth of today grew up with smartphones. I grew up with television. I was about five when a television appeared in our living room, called a parlor back then. It was an Admiral nine incher and the screen was round and it came in a wooden cabinet that went all the way to the floor. There was this big cabinet to hold this little round window along with a couple of knobs. I only remember watching Howdy Doody at five o’clock. “What time is it kids?” “Howdy Doody time!”. And I remember the stylized bullseye test pattern that was on at all other times, telling us that the TV was working even if there wasn’t any programming to watch. The test pattern looked like a dart board with an Indian chief’s head up in one corner. I don’t know when there was programming, but it seemed to a five-year-old that the test pattern was on more than Howdy Doody.
|[Both Sides Now] Joni Mitchell celebrates her 76th birthday. Both sides of Joni Mitchell’s art: The visual and the musical. Video
|What’s this Key Deer doing? Thermal image challenge from Save Our Key Deer, Inc.: On Tuesday we let everyone guess what our specialized thermal imaging camera captured one of our Key Deer test subjects doing. Here’s the background and final answer:
As part of our tests whether a post-Irma aerial thermal imaging survey could accurately detect Key Deer, we used an area frequented by the deer during the day, especially in the morning and afternoon. By evening, though, they tend to leave to forage and spend the night elsewhere. On this day, however, a doe lying there let everyone else leave, and stayed into the evening on her own. This unusual behavior, coupled with the fact that the previous year we found a still-borne deer fetus at that site, made us believe this doe was about to give birth! Our scientist got super excited about possibly being the first to document a deer birth (certainly a first Key Deer birth) with infrared imaging.
Finally, at 11 pm the doe got up and took a pee and left. So we definitely have the only thermal imaging record of a Key Deer peeing (see how she even peed on her legs, which is common) but that’s not quite worthy of a scientific publication.
|[Roger Daltrey] The lead singer of The Who talks to Tom Morton about a musical career and rock legacy spanning five decades. From August 2011. Audio
[Veterans Day] What if I told you Memorial Day remembers people who died in wars, and Veterans Day honors those who survived.
|[“Winn Dixie DJ”] I woke from my siesta and went to W/D and really woke up! I’ll say that for the DJ. The old disco hits were fun.
[“Name that activity”] I suspect it’s a Buck urinating on his scrape marking his territory for the rut. or it’s a buck just urinating. The right hind leg lifted is giving him away
|[The Oops Files] Medical device used during labour falls out of patient 10 weeks later. Link
|The Great Hurricane of 1846 struck Key West and by noon full hurricane winds were blowing with a storm surge of over seven feet. All buildings on the island were damaged or destroyed and the lighthouses at Sand Key and in Key West were destroyed. This was probably the most severe hurricane to hit but no barometer reading from Key West survived, a reading of 27.06 inches was recorded in Cuba before the storm moved north.
Exercise makes you look better naked. So does wine—your choice!
|[Chinese Robocall] Oh great, now I’m getting robocalls from the Chinese Embassy, probably looking for the money we owe them. +1 (202) 588-9760 Washington D.C.
|What happened to the flea market? Sob…where am I going to get my tools, hats, clothes, boat stuff and junk I need. Boo hoo! (Ed: Oh, Joy, oh, joy! I just got notice from Hareen’s Suncare & Hats that the flea market will be reopening on November 23 and she will be there with a whole lot of new hats and beach towels and she said the fish fry will be going too.)
[Then & Now] Remember when you got your windshield cleaned by a man in uniform, oil checked, and gas pumped, without asking, all for free, every time? And you didn’t pay for air? And you got trading stamps to boot and free road maps?
|[Be A Tax Volunteer] United Way of the Florida Keys. Is your schedule flexible? Would you enjoy helping make our community more affordable for everyone? Do you want to be a superhero to some of your hard-working friends and neighbors? Become a volunteer during our upcoming VITA tax preparation season. Link
Veterans Day is November 11, remember it–they do!
|[Faith] Why are so many people cracking up and wasting their lives being so religious? Seems to me it’s all a con for power and money by preying on the weak.