2014 January

Sunday, January 19, 2015

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[Review] We went to Springers for pizza with 4 people the other night. The band was packing up and they had just closed the dining room. The server said we could sit at the bar and eat, but the gang I was with just wasn’t into that. The guy says, don’t go, let me check with the manager and he came back with the bar idea again. We told him we understood and would just move on when the owner came out and said, folks you don’t have to go anywhere else, Ill go back and make you the best pizzas you can get and you don’t have to go anywhere. He did. We ate. It was great. We had fun. And everything was wonderful.

Thanks to him and his staff for a great end to a great night. We’ll be back. We’ve had gangs of 6,8 10, and so forth in there before and it’s always been good, fair and haven’t ever left there hungry or disappointed.

isaksen-flood-roof 4.23.13
It was 47° this morning in the middle of Big Pine. Burrrr!
keylimepie20pt-arch-logo00Does anyone know what is happening at the Key Lime Pie store in the Winn Dixie shopping center? I saw film crews there earlier in the week. On Friday a film crew showed up at 11AM and scratched off the stores logo from the front door and covered the windows with brown paper. They filmed it all including a walk around the parking lot with TV type video cameras in hand. Also observed some arguing and removal of the banners in front of the store. The store is closed. Seems like a lot of the stores in this shopping center are closing down. Is it the new owners, the economy or do they charge too much for rent? I shop mostly in Key West but I feel sorry for those who do not own cars or tourist that have to drive 25 miles to buy something.

[HOB records fiasco could have been avoided by school board] The issue at the heart of the financial records fiasco associated with the HOB construction project is rather simple.The school district did not have a firm, fixed price contract with Coastal Construction. Rather, the contract was a cost reimbursement one. In layman’s terms, the agreement was for time and materials not to exceed a guaranteed maximum price.

As the project evolved, Coastal submit­ted bills to the district. These invoices were to be accompanied by supporting documentation to substantiate the costs for which Coastal was in effect seeking reimbursement.

Unfortunately for taxpayers, the dis­trict invariably paid the bills, but did not always ask for receipts and other evidence to verify the invoices. That is why the district does not have what the auditors need today, and why they are turning now to Coastal.

Had the district proceeded in a busi­nesslike manner all along, the records would be in its possession.

The Audit and Finance Committee, particularly Stuart Kessler, warned the superintendent about this situation and urged him to correct it, get the documents, before the final payment was made. The superintendent chose to ignore that advice and did not demand the records, thus leading to the current mess, which may only be resolved through costly liti­gation.

It is as simple as that.  ~Larry Murray

Blue volcano. Spectacular neon blue lava pours from Indonesia’s Kawah Ijen Volcano at night. Link 

editor flash

[Federal Appeals Court Ruling] A blogger is entitled to the same free speech protections as a traditional journalist and cannot be held liable for defamation unless they acted negligently, a federal appeals court ruled on Friday. Take note Editor! Link

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[90 Mile Bridge] … and you think the 7 Mile Bridge is scary! 




[Marathon] Does anyone remember what the name of this defunct restaurant was called. It’s on the channel going to Boot Key.

I sent you a notice this morning about our lost cat. Well, the cat turned up, so you can cancel that. Thanks very much.


Don’t miss Sunday, the last day of the 10th Annual Big Pine & Lower Keys Nautical Flea Market hosted by the Lower Keys Chamber of Commerce.  Located on the Chamber grounds at MM 31, many vendors are offering great deals on everything nautical.  8 am – 2 pm


[“Dan from Quicken loans”] Did you happen to fill out or use some online loan calculator? I suspect that’s the “loophole” that allows you to call them (you may have inadvertently consented). It’s pretty annoying when it happens, but sometimes if you ask “Dan” to please remove your name from their CRM system (or whatever they have) that may stop the calls.

lawyer youre being sued

Now that Dump the Pumps has filed its lawsuit demanding that DEP revoke the permits for construction of the LPS grinder pump sewer system due to false statements and improper design, if it turns out that DEP does not do its job and enforce its regulations, it seems to me that we should be able to class action sue the State for damages. Damages would occur when the system does not work and all that construction money was wasted, or when it crashes causing loss of normal sewer service and the release of almost a million gallons a day of raw sewage into the environment. Of course, there will also be some damages possibly including loss of life if the illegal non-explosion-proof grinder motors ignite fumes and blow up grinder pits or lift stations and the piping connected to them. Sign on in support of a sane sewer system with the petition at http://dumpthe

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[Private Shooting Range] Does anyone know if the gun range law applies to owned lots in the Keys or only behind an existing home. I own several canal front lots in the county and would like to make one on Bay Point a firing range until I am ready to build a house on it. Does anyone know if this is ok under the current laws? 



Look southwest before dawn Wednesday and Thursday for the Moon grouping up with Mars and Spica. (These scenes are drawn for the middle of North America. European observers: move each Moon a quarter of the way toward the one for the previous date. The Moon is shown three times actual size.)

[Old Tech] I wouldn’t buy anything Apple or Mac because you have to buy into the whole Apple world and Apple is just about passe. Their time has come and gone. They haven’t come out with anything new since Steve Jobs died. Their latest attempt was to add colors to the iPhone –whoopie. When you download anything Apple they load at least 7 programs in your computer, similar to what AOL did before it’s fall. These programs default just about everything to Apple’s software, making real computing difficult.

The hot tech company right now and the leader in smartphones is Samsung with over 80% of smartphones today being from them.

[Fire] Marathon restaurant, marina and boats destroyed. Salty’s and the 7 Mile Marina, on the bayside at mile marker 47 just by the Seven Mile Bridge, erupted in flames about 3 a.m. Friday night, hours after closing. Two charter boats, the Finn’s Up and the Wanted, were also destroyed. No negligence or arson suspected. Link


[Gun Nuts] How did it come to be that local officials can’t do anything about local Bozos shooting off live ammo in residential neighborhoods?  Are we living under some shadow NRA dictatorship without even knowing it?  I think that a background check on that State law and whomever sponsored it is in order, to be closely followed by a recall election.

[“Big Pine Key beautiful women”] What happened? When I left there 14 1/2 years ago the joke was “What do you call three women Piners in a bar? ans: A full set of teeth!” And the times they are a changin’ I met a lot of “professional job seekers” also!
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[Your TV may be compromised] Researchers report a botnet of more than 100,000 compromised smart TVs, home networking routers, and other Internet-connected consumer devices, including a smart refrigerator, recently took part in sending 750,000 malicious e-mails over a two-week period during the recent holidays. Link

[“Quicken loans calling”] 2 to 3 times a day is crazy.  Tell ‘Dan’ to put you on their do not call list in the meantime. 
Thanks to the FTR Guy for keeping us informed about international politics and important stuff besides the local gossip and other useless information on this blog. 
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telescope lady

[Looking at the stars] A 3 evening program that’s free and open to the public. Link 

[Gun Nuts] I read the gun stories in the citizen and keynoter. If you are shooting a gun, the policeman only has the right to make sure that you are not shooting over a road or at an occupied dwelling. If they criticize or tell you your target isn’t good enough the policeman can get a $5,000 fine. They are still working on the law that gives you a right to fire a warning shot at any intruder if they have a gun or not.

So I am getting 50 rubber ducks to put on top of my white picket fences so if I shoot a warning shot, I can say that I was only target shooting since next to my home there are 7 wooded lots.

Monroe county’s old laws from 20 years ago said no discharge of any weapon in the county.

We liked to target practice. We built a floating target and had to call the Coast Guard to let them know we were going to shoot from our boat a few miles off shore. It was like calling to say, hey we are taking a lot of guns into international waters. Red flag, it was crazy. That was so much hassle we just gave up.

Our son learned gun safety once a month up at the Tamiami Gun Range. For you anti gun folks, we taught our kids gun safety at young ages and both were in the military with sharp shooter badges. Thank a vet for your freedom and let all of us shoot our guns safely.

Noticed on the Keysso arrest records that we have a ‘crap’ trap puller in the upper Keys. Perhaps he could be relocated to help here with the grinder pumps.
chopsticks in actionI hate giving bad reviews on businesses, but I need to do so now. We have been patrons of China Garden in BPK for many many years and have always had great service and food. Well not tonight. The service was terrible, a new waitress who speaks only Chinese, how can she wait on tables if so does not understand what you are ordering. When the food arrived, I ordered roast pork and veggies, it arrived ice cold. My husband ordered sweet and sour chicken, and I can’t even explain what that looked like, lets just say, you needed a magnifying glass to see the chicken. He also had to wait until I complained about my meal for the sweet and sour sauce that comes in a bowl. The owner, Erik, was nowhere to be found, guess he realizes that this business is going down hill and none of the original employees were around. We will never eat at this establishment again and its a shame since they used to have great service and food.
Can you give me a list of the bands that played at Wet Stock (picnic island) this past Labor Day.

wedding rings


Jewelry making class on BPK.  Link

Who else is worried about the Grinder Pumps and the future costs of all this crapping? Somehow I think we have been had and this is only part of the master plan of redoing the Florida Keys into a grand amusement park like gateway to Cuba or for some very large religious organization to set up their Churches For Humanity bull shit. Something is going down and no one seems to know what, but they sure are spending our tax money for lots of fancy useless crap here in the Keys.
[“Beautiful women on Big Pine”] It is all in the eye of the horney beholder.


Check out the government section. Vote would allow U.S. Congress & President Obama to hit on a bong legally. Link 

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[“Router security”] It’s still worthwhile even if you have no money to steal. They could hijack your identity and buy a bunch of things to make your situation a lot worse. Good material for a movie – wait, they already did that in ‘Identity Thief’.

donald duck tip hat

When I was a kid an energy drink was Nestle Quik, and a party drug was when you inhaled a helium balloon and talked like Donald Duck.

[“Those upset with snowbirds were one themselves”] Afraid not. A snowbird is one who resides in warmer climates a brief period of the year when it’s cold and wintery where they normally live during the majority of the year. A local lives in the area year round. A Florida resident is one who spends the majority of their year in Florida, no matter what their id or property tax form says. One who was born in the Keys is called a Conch and a 10+ year local in the Keys is called a Fresh Water Conch. And no, not all locals were previously snowbirds, many came here the first time or from other warm climates (like from California, Hawaii or the Caribbean) and stayed or was born and raised here. Don’t get us wrong, many locals are glad the snowbirds are here spending their money. However snowbirds can’t expect locals or Conchs to consider them residents, they are not here long enough to blend in. Many do try to pretend, like they have a guilty conscious, are feeling homesick or something. Snowbirds are sort of like tourists that missed their flights back home, they are itching to get back to what they know, but they have to wait for that darn white stuff to disappear first. Of the two, the tourists are a lot braver than snowbirds, they actually get off a nice warm plane right into that freezing cold, some still with their loud Bermuda shorts and t-shirts on.
[Are you calling my old lady a hooker?] Is she is charging you? Oh wait, forget I asked that. (wink).
[Gun Nuts Are Real Men] This is a come-on to get people to start thinking against firearms and the 2nd Amendment because there is a new documentary coming out that is designed to get rid of our rights to have firearms. Do not kid yourself, these anti-gun nuts are the second most dangerous power mongers aside from religious nuts and gun nuts. Protect your rights or lose everything! Save America, bring back manhood! 

china flag


China doesn’t own the U.S. because of our debt to them. They only hold 7.6% of our debt. The vast majority of Americas debt is to U.S. holdings. No one can be “owned” for less than 8%. Now you know the rest of the story. 

Thanks for the post on battery safety. I too have the bag of batteries for recycling, and before the video was done I had all the 9V batteries taped. Does anyone know where to take old batteries (AA, 9V type) for recycling or safe disposal? 
For those who do not believe in God. “He who says he does not believe, does believe. He believes in something. The simple statement,”I do not believe in God”, presupposes another faith. In oneself, perhaps,or in one’s proud mind. But, one always believes. It is like thinking, if you say,” I do not want to think,” or “I do not believe in God”, by those two simple sentences you prove that you are thinking that you do not want to believe in Him Whom you know to exist and that you do not want to think. Man, like all animals,is born though a union of male and female.But the Soul, that thing which distinguishes the animal-man from the animal-brute comes from God. He creates it and infuses it into the body, which otherwise would be only animal” I wish I could claim this reasoning, but it comes from another more eloquent than I. 

Justice peeks


[Justice?] When his kiddie molesters got major exposure, I think it was in 2005, Pope Benedict had to defrock 400 priests in two years. Why didn’t he just fire them? What greater cause than having sex with our children? These defrocked priests are merely sent to our communities without telling the community that there is a pediphile about. In America pediphiles have to register and most cities place their photo in the newspaper to warn parents that there is a pediphile about. These defrocked priests will get a nice place to live, free food and medical care for the rest of their lives in exchange for anonymity and doing a little paper work. That is not justice.

Deer Catholics, please don’t get all sensitive on the public for trying to protect our children. The Church has been hiding the truth as long as it has existed. 

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[Let the Buyer Beware] Ever wonder why a company gives you a deal for TV, phone, internet, wi-fi for a price of say $250 per month, then you find out a year or more later, your friends are getting a deal from the same company for exactly the same services for $200 or less per month, but the company will not reduce your $250 per month bill because they say you have a contract to pay that amount. You then ask why they are not lowering your charges like your friend’s and they hang up on you? So what to do? Change companies or drop your account and get a new one? Or say there is nothing worth watching on TV or on the Internet or on my cell phone, so the hell with them and just cancel the whole thing and get a life. It is something to think about.
nira tocco realtor 9.12
[“Kiki’s overpriced”] “One dinner, one appetizer, 2 salads costs 60 bucks.” Assuming you left a 20% tip and had two classes of house wine, that’s 50-(2 x 5)-(2 x 5)-15 = $15 for the meal. Seems about par for the course. Like I said yesterday, costs have risen and the dollar has been intentionally devalued to pay for the economic bailout mess caused by a bad session of Congress experimenting with socialized sub-prime housing loans. Restaurants know people tend to look at the main course price first and decide if they are sold or not. Once they are comfortable paying that, the other items are less cost and tend to have less impact until the final bill arrives all totaled up. Some are upset they have spent so much that they take it out on the service and don’t leave a tip. Don’t go to Little Palm Island if Kiki’s is too high for you. The appetizers there can cost upwards of $360 each, the main meals portions are $60-$200 or so and small as to cover more courses. You’ll also get your own private waitress, thus need to compensate them for the whole evening. If you want a meal deal, there is the new Hitachi Restaurant just as you get into Homestead past Card Sound Road on the left. All you can eat stir fry shrimp, chicken, beef, veggies and sushi, hot and cold bars of various goodies for about $12 a head. Drinks are not included, they do give free water. But don’t use the bathrooms, they are not air vented to the outside correctly. 



[Captain Doom and Gloom] DEF: Gun Nut n, A person thinking that any weapon is evil if it harms a living creature, but OK to kill humanity in war or hunt for food. SEE: ‘The Insanity of the Last Population of Earth’, by William Orwell II. ‘The false ego of the Uniform only is surpassed by the insanity its wearer!’ “The Badge is a license to kill only if the target does not have one!”

DEF: Tribute n, That which the inept pay by demand to their Elected Useless Eaters, who do nothing of importance except distribute that wealth among themselves. SEE; TAXES – A gratuity to the dominate warlords.

I haven’t seen any anoles around, but I’ve seen a huge number of aholes. In fact, if they could fly this place would be an airport.
from the right

bridge shakesDeer Friends, we are a conflicted nation. The chasm between the left and right has never been deeper and the bridges across that chasm have never been shakier. With the midterms just around the corner it is interesting to examine the mood and belief structures of the voters.

We have had effective Democrat control of our governance since January 2007.  After 7 years of Democrat governance, today only 29% of likely U.S. voters think the country is heading in the right direction. A year ago, 36% said the country was heading in the right direction.

We are told that the Democrats intend to make economic “fairness” a cornerstone of their political pitch in the midterms. Yet, 53% of voters consider economic growth to be more important than economic fairness. 38% rate economic fairness as the more important of the two.

Today, only 39% of voters now give the president good or excellent marks for his handling of economic issues, while slightly more (41%) rate his performance in this area as poor. 41% of likely voters believe that our economy will be weaker in a year while only 33% say stronger.

It’s no surprise that Democrat legislators facing midterm election are avoiding Mr. Obama as if he had hugged a skunk, Gallup now tells us that his favorability rating has plummeted to 39% while 53% disapprove. It’s true that Obama is not a candidate, but we must remember that it was Obama hand in hand with  a Democrat controlled Congress that  has delivered us to where we are now. Mr. Obama and Democrat governance have hurt our nation. It’s time for a change.

Part 2) Just a few days ago, Mr. Obama puffed out his chest and declared that he has a pen and he has a phone. He declared that he will go forward with his agenda with or with Congressional support.  So be it. We know that Mr. Obama has routinely elected to ignore or contravene legislation that he has signed. His contraventions of the Affordable Care Act are legion.

The Affordable Care Act has sucked much of the oxygen out of the news shows talking heads and has licked much of the ink from the newspapers.

How many of us knew that Obama signed the Biggert-Waters act into law on July 6th 2012? Only recently have we learned that this law will literally explode the cost of your flood insurance. It may well make it impossible for vast numbers of Monroe residents to be able to afford to continue to live here.

Our Governor, Rick Scott has been urging Obama to exercise the same zeal he exercised in setting aside sections of the ACA, so as to provide relief for Monroe homeowners. Scott says that Obama used executive authority to delay parts of the Affordable Care Act. Scott and many Monroe homeowners ask “Why is keeping Floridians in their homes less important?”

Scott wrote the following letter to Mr. Obama

Dear Mr. President
Last week, I wrote to inform you of the devastating consequences of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act, which you signed into law on July 6, 2012. I have yet to receive your response.

You already used your executive authority to delay the implementation of the Affordable Care Act and undo health insurance laws that were costing Floridians the health care plans they liked and wanted to keep.  Why is keeping Floridians in their homes less important?

Floridians are suffering.  I would like to meet with you as soon as possible to discuss how we can resolve this unfair insurance rate hike on Florida families.

We need you to take immediate action to undo the harmful effects of this law before it cripples Florida’s real-estate market and threatens our state’s economic momentum.  I am making myself available to meet with you on this critical issue at your earliest convenience. Our state cannot wait. I look forward to sitting down with you soon to fix this problem.

Signed: Governor Rick Scott  Link

You should know that Republican Senator Marco Rubio voted against the bill, but Democrat Senator Bill Nelson voted for the bill which may make it impossible for you stay in your home.

I urge those who have contrary opinions to send them to me at

Respectfully submitted  FTR