2016 February

Tuesday, February 2, 2016


Since 2002. Published Tuesdays and Fridays

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deer head chewing



Punxsutawney Bambi didn’t see her shadow today which means six more weeks of rain.

[Old Money Whispers, New Money Shouts] There is nothing worse than a rich show off who makes many people feel bad about themselves. Ostentatious shows of wealth are not classy nor is abandoning the family after one has struck it rich. The backstory is a sad story with families left in the dust while the new ones parade around clearly enjoying showing off. Having money is splendid provided there are no displays of vulgarity. Additionally, they make themselves targets. I’m not jealous as I have several millions and you would never even know it. That’s half the fun of it. We blend in and pay the regular prices while Richie Rich and his plastic surgery-cokehead-wife pay the premium prices. Did you eat that gigantic shark you hauled in behind your yacht or was it just a kill to make up for your small male parts?
coffee beans


The science behind a good cup of coffee. Link

Springer’s Bar & Grill
Wednesday: The Cornhole League meets in the evening
Thursday: Myles Mancuso – Blues at its finest. Noted by True Fire as one of the Top 10 guitar prodigies in the world. Myles has been preforming professionally for audiences since the age of 10.
Saturday: The Megan Ellis Band – As if I’d walked in on Patsy Cline or Loretta Lynn back during their early years of singing on those same stages in the clubs of downtown. 6:30 pm

Sunday: Can you say SUPER BOWL! Join the party at Springer’s Bar & Grill. Free Jell-o shots, Lots of giveaways along with drink specials and great home cookin’.

Y’all come down & see us!

[Port & Starboard] Many nautical terms have historical significance that’s developed over centuries. For instance, “starboard” (the right side of the boat when you’re facing the bow) is derived from the term “steerboard”. This reference goes back to very early ships that were steered by a steering oar on the right-hand side of the ship -in the days before ships had rudders on their centerlines. When these ships came into a port, they needed to dock keeping the steering oar safe on the outside, away from the dock. So the “port” side referred to the left-hand side of the ship when facing forward, the side tied to the dock once the ship pulled into the dock. However, another term that you may have heard is “larboard,” which was in common use until the middle of the 19th century; like port, it, too, referred to the left side of the ship as determined by the point of view of someone facing the bow.

Bonus: “Gunwale” Is the edge of a boat where the hull meets the deck. The name is derived from the lip at the edge of the deck that at one time prevented cannons from sliding into the sea as the ship rolled.

fish-sticks5[I Hate Frozen Fish] I had lunch at the Square Grouper this week. I asked if the fish was fresh and local and the waitress very skillfully side-stepped the question and went on to described the delicious specials of the day. I didn’t order one of the specials. Instead I ordered the yellowtail snapper fish sandwich for $15. It was awful! If that wasn’t frozen fish from some other country, I’ll eat my flip-flops. Basically I had a $15 fish stick sandwich on a Winn Dixie hamburger bun.

Of the three of us who had various fish dishes, not one of us commented on the food so as not to put a damper on a pleasant visit with friends. Why doesn’t a busy place like that serve fresh fish anymore? I know they don’t have to change because most tourists have never had fresh fish, but everything else at that place is so good they should. The place was packed by noon on a weekday! If I’m paying the fresh fish price I demand fresh fish. The odd thing is that Fanci Seafood is just down the street and the restaurant wouldn’t even have to buy more than they needed each day.

The 35th annual 7 Mile Bridge Run is scheduled April 9.
help wanted sm

[Help Wanted] Coconuts has an opening for morning bartender/package store sales. 7am to noon. Great place to work for the right person. Must be drug free and pass a background check. Stop by and fill out an application at the “NUT”.

[Look At The Bright Side] The story is told of a woman who during the war went to live with her husband in a camp on the Mojave Desert. She simply hated the place; the heat was almost unbearable, 125 degrees in the shade, the wind blew incessantly, and there was sand – sand everywhere. Finally, in desperation she wrote her parents in Ohio that she couldn’t stand it another minute and was coming home. Quickly came the reply by airmail from her father – just the two familiar lines: “Two men looked out from prison bars… one saw the mud, the other saw stars.” The daughter did some real thinking, not only with the intellect but also with her heart. She decided to stick to her post. She made friends with the natives, learned to love the country, and eventually wrote a book about it. The desert hadn’t changed, but her attitude had. Because she listened with her heart to the words her father sent, a whole new world opened up to her.   ~Coconuts Bar & Liquor Store


Does anyone on Big Pine Key play pickle ball or give lessons? Call me 785 567 6408.

[“Difference between .380 and .38 pistol”] There is a big difference between a .380 and a .38.  The only similarity that these two rounds have is that they fire the same diameter bullet.  There have been dozens of bullets made on the .38-inch diameter bullet.  The .380 is the smallest of the popular rounds it survive in popular use.  The .380 happens to be the exact same round as the 9mm Kurtz round.  Kurtz is German for short. These rounds are specifically designed to function best out of an automatic pistol.  Stepping up in size is the standard 9mm Parabelum.  Parabelum means “prepare for war” in Latin. This round was also designed to be fired from an Automatic. There have been several 38 rounds no longer in popular use like the .38 short and other antiquated rounds.  The standard .38 special is a more powerful cartridge designed for a revolver.  and finally the .357 magnum round which is the most powerful common round used in handguns. You should note that the .38 Special can be safely fired from a .357 Magnum, however the .357 Magnum cannot be fired from a .38 Special.

Please note that this is only a brief summery in the discussion of .38 caliber ammunition. There are other variables such as bullet length and weight as well as the amount of power charge in the case.

ikea7A Swedish woman found IKEA bags filled with several human skeletons. And of course they come in a million pieces with vague instructions that you have to put together.
[Florida Keys Journal] Marathon City Councilman John Bartus:

  1. How are you, your family, and your businesses?

Music is his day job. He can be busy as he wants to be. It is good to be busy. He has a Marathon Magazine started six years ago. It is a quarterly publication. His other businesses are the Marooned in Marathon store and the Key Colony Beach store.

His named his family as Marlene, cats, and Dad. With Seafood Festival coming up mid-March, he is looking forward to the event. Friends and families make the event fun. His band will be there just like everyone.

If John has a cats in his family, then he is my kind of guy.

  1. The community swimming pool might make it to the upcoming ballots this year.

The councilmembers have all kinds of input. John and I believe the first thing to do is the referendum on whether we want a swimming pool or we do not. If it passes, then the details can be worked out.

If the Marathon High School property next to the school is available, then the School Board needs to get some skin in the overall project. Residents and businesses will have to help too. We discussed many different ways to fund the project and build and operate the swimming pool.

  1. What’s happening to middle income workforce housing?

John recognizes that we have a huge problem. As always it is the funding, the building, and management. Middle Keys Community Land Trust and Habitat for Humanity are resident experts.

Some have asked why is middle income housing is an emergency. Wasn’t low income the priority? Low income housing is no longer critical, but middle income is under attack from all sides. Some resorts are building barracks type of workforce housing. If you want to keep your work force here, then they need housing not barracks.

  1. John and I discussed council meetings schedule.

At the last council meeting, there was again discussion on council meeting ever three or four weeks. People expect the council to meet twice a month if not sooner. If a certain council has a short agenda with no important action schedules, then cancel that meeting.

  1. What are the consequences of build out, which is when no more properties left to develop?

“I’m not sure what’s going to happen when it hits. There is a lot of redevelopment work still out there, as well as (hopefully) some affordable housing development that will help sustain the construction industry. And as long as tourism and commercial fishing stay strong, we should weather economic downturns better than others.”

Planning is key to monitor when build out occurs. John talked about the Stewardship Bill getting passed up in Tallahassee.

  1. What happens when build out hits us?

The economy and jobs will suffer in the downturn that is coming.

  1. How is the sewer and stormwater progressing regarding upkeep and regular maintenance?

City Manager attended when a problem occurred, all at 1 AM. Dan Sauce is the department head of sewer and stormwater systems. He is doing a good job, as problems decrease due to good maintenance.

  1. What are your council projects that you are working on? Of course, workforce housing. Another is reuse water that we are all still waiting for. The golf course, Community Park, and other possible high water users. Infrastructure like homes, sewer and stormwater systems.

The beaches need upgrades and work to make a great city place the best beaches in the Keys. And most importantly, build up reserves that will be needed after a hurricane has hit us. It was not a question about the lack of preparation. It is not question of when, the next disaster is coming. Be ready.

dumping5dumping7[Dumping] Whoever is building the house at the end of Heck Avenue on Little Torch Key should be ashamed. I was wondering why we were suddenly having so much garbage coming into our canal. Then I took a look at their construction site. It is a dump! Water bottles, beer cans, plastic sheeting. With the winds of late, they are all blowing into the canals that run on two sides. Unfortunately, they start late and leave early so I haven’t been able to confront them. I hope whoever is in charge of this mess sees this post and cleans it up fast.
Impact of construction in the U.K. The changing numbers are just since you’ve been on this page! Link
I have no sympathy for the Oregon ranchers who took to violence in order to try to keep using our land to graze their cattle for free. This is a country of laws not of guns as they’d like to imagine.
Uss_Dwight_D._Eisenhower_(CVN_69)Multiple squadrons of smaller Navy training jets are at Boca Chica Field for a week of training that also lured the $4.5 billion, 1,092- foot USS Dwight D. Eisenhower to the Florida Straits.
I quickly put something together for Peary Court.  Still have lots of questions.  But thought it would be interesting to compare Peary Court to an affordable housing project that was recently completed in Key Largo. Link
Cornhole-tossersSpringer’s Bar & Grill

Tuesday: Alan Graf’s Bluegrass Jam Circle at 6:30pm. Bring your fiddle, guitar or just tap your feet or dance along. No experience necessary.

Wednesday: The Cornhole League meets at 7 pm. Even if you didn’t sign up it’s still a blast watching with a cold beer served in a chilled 16 oz. glass.

Happy Hour every day from 3pm – 7 pm. We serve our draft beer in 16 oz. chilled glasses, Great Burgers, Fries and Pizza Pies. Home made Specials.

Come join the fun and see your friends and make some new ones.

[Computer Power User Magazine] The free February digital edition is now available at Link
logo-seal-monroe-county[“New seal wastes money”] Politicians are a reckless bunch.  There’s never enough of our money for them. They’re always thinking of creative ways to spend it.  Taxes, fees, permits, inspections, surcharges, and on and on.  Whenever they want more money they just come up with another “term” for grabbing more cash from the taxpayers.  They must lay awake nights thinking up more and more ways to grab and squander OUR money.  Now our esteemed county Commission wants to blow who knows how much cash on a new County Seal.  I guess they couldn’t find another defunct restaurant or marina to buy so they came up with new seal deal.  And, once again, WE, the already beleaguered and overburdened taxpayers, are the ones who will be paying for it.  You can bet your last dollar (if you have one left) that as soon as they ram this latest Bubba boondoggle up our collective backsides that will come up with another “badly needed” project that needs funding.
[American Youth] 24% of teens are online almost constantly. Through multitasking, teens spend about seven and a half hours a day consuming about ten and three-quarter hours’ worth of media.
revolution red coats marching[Redcoats] I’ve often wondered why the British army wore red coats. I finally found the answer. In the years before smokeless powder, black powder was the only explosive available. When a soldier fired a gun he was engulfed in smoke. When a regiment fired their guns they were completely engulfed in smoke.  When the enemy fired his guns the whole battlefield was obscured in that smoke. Their commanders needed to see their troops through the fog of war and red jackets were the way. When smokeless cordite replaced black powder the red jackets became targets instead of identifiers and were changed to camouflage.
Iran flew a surveillance drone over a U.S. aircraft carrier and took “precise” photographs of it as part of an ongoing naval drill, state media reported Friday. Ooooh.


Don’t they have any weight regulations in the Sheriff’s Department? Do they hire by the pound? Can you imagine one of these tubs of lard chasing or fighting a bad guy?

“Congratulations to Curt-A-Sea Aquatic Adventures for their commitment to marine conservation,” said Sanctuary Superintendent Sean Morton. “We are happy to recognize the work they do to advance conservation through low-impact education and research trips.”

Curt-A-Sea Aquatic Adventures specializes in live-aboard excursions, including diving, fishing, spearfishing and marine research and education expeditions on coral bleaching, reef awareness, coral farming, shark tagging, fish identification, and lionfish eradication. They have taken federal, state, university and non-profit researchers from NOAA, U.S. Geological Survey, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the University of Miami, and the Hawsepiper Foundation on research expeditions.

The Blue Star program, which recognizes charter companies that commit to training snorkelers and divers in low impact practices, has grown to 20 operators since its inception in 2009. Research has shown that education can lessen the impact that snorkelers and divers have on marine ecosystems, because they are more careful to avoid damaging contact with corals and other marine life.



It’s getting to be that time of the year. It is important to bear in mind that political campaigns are designed by the same people who sell toothpaste and cars. ~Coconuts Bar & Liquor Store.

[“Parking lot trees”] Yes the electric bill will get higher. They put up more lights so that idiots won’t trip over themselves and sue the owner. More lights, more electricity, higher costs, and fewer chicken specials at WD.
frozen fish4[“Tilapia Alert”] I recently ordered one of my favorite sandwiches at Schooner Wharf — grilled dolphin. To my dismay the fillet was about 3/8-inch thick and about 6 inches square! I fish a lot and have never seen a dolphin fillet look like this. It did not flake like dolphin either. If you get a fillet shaped liked this in a restaurant down here, it is most likely Tilapia or some other Asian frozen fish.
[Crosswalk] Let me get this straight, Big Pine Key spent something like 6 million dollars for tunnels for the Key deer to cross the highway and Islamorada can’t figure out how to get people across US1 safely? What the hell?
easter-cantata[Easter Cantata] The Lower Keys Community Choir and the Keys Chamber Orchestra will be performing their annual Easter Cantata Monday, March 14 at 7:30 p.m. at the Big Pine Key Methodist Church, 280 Key Deer Blvd and on Wednesday March 16th at 7:30 p.m. at the community center in Venture Out on Cudjoe Key (ask for directions at the gate). These concerts are free and a free-will offering will be taken.

We are looking for choir members and musicians to join us. Rehearsals began January 31st, but there are plenty of weeks left. Even part time residents are invited to participate as long as they can make half of the rehearsals and will be here for the concerts. All ages and instruments are welcome (anyone out there play the harp?). The chamber orchestra rehearses at the Big Pine Key Senior Center, behind the fire station, at 1:30 on Sundays and the choir rehearses at the Methodist Church at 5:00. Show up a few minutes early to meet folk and get situated.

[“Difference between .380 and .38 gun”] In a word, no. Those numbers are usually referred to cartridges/bullets. Of the .380 there are historically four changes/upgrades and 9.4 MM Danish which was their version of the.380. Historically there were 39 +/-different varieties of the .38 which includes the .357Mag & .357 Remington Maximum. I’m not aware of any .380 being fired from rifles, but revolvers and auto loading pistols are used with the .38 family of revolvers, auto loaders and a variety of rifles.
sim cardWhen you take your smartphone swimming, are you able to transfer the SIM card and SD card to your new phone?  Yes, I do know that there are different sizes, but sizes being equal, would it be possible or are the cards also ruined?
Please help me, I’m looking for contact info for the Long Hair Ranch. I have friends who stayed there for 10 years in a row and I would like to meet this guy. Please get back to me at your earliest convenience.


So tell me again how the minimum wage is keeping up with inflation?

I always enjoy reading about Big Pine Key. There are some folks who write about their dislikes in a way that scares me; kind of like the going postal type and I wonder if they are about to snap.
Walther-PK380-Pistol[“Is a .380 handgun exactly the same as a .38 handgun”] Nope! The vast majority of .38 caliber handguns are revolvers.  There are a few, very few semi auto pistols and long guns chambered for the cartridge.  The .38 caliber round has been around since the early 1900’s.  The military used .38 special revolvers as a side arm until they learned that it lacked sufficient “knock down” power and it was replaced with the .45 caliber Colt 1911 semi auto pistol.  The .38 special is still a very popular round, it is relatively hard hitting yet with manageable recoil.

The .380 also called the 9mm “short”, or the .380 acp, is specifically designed for use in semi auto pistols.  Most .380 loads lack the knock down power of the .38 special, but it has become wildly popular in very small frame semi auto pistols.  The Walther PPK carried by James, shaken, not stirred, Bond was chambered in .380.  In WW2 some German pilots and German officers carried pistols chambered for .380. Many manufactures are now making +P .380 ammo.  This round has markedly more “knockdown” than the standard load.  Some of the +P loads are as powerful as the .38 special. ~FTR

The CT is doing it right, keeping the local gossip and unimportant stuff and sticking the rambling radicals in the political section where the life and death struggles of America are irreverent to our Keys moronic life styles! Good job, Comrade Ed!


A celebration of life is being held for Stanley Becher, long time resident of the lower Keys at Coconuts on Big Pine Key on Tuesday, February 2 from 4:00p.m. to whenever. Anyone that knew Stan is welcome to participate.

People my age are so much older than me.
zombie eating


Kill the brain and you kill the ghoul.” ~Night of the Living Dead 1968

People with sewage grinder pumps in their yard will eventually have to repair and maintain them. Of course they will!  Read the Lease Agreement between the County and FKAA and you will discover that the County owns all of the sewer infrastructure on public property and FKAA has no authority whatsoever to make promises or agreements on behalf of the County. The FKAA is allowed to operate and maintain the system and collect the revenue. The Lease can be terminated just because the County feels like it with 60 days notice, or with 7 days notice if there is a breach of terms.
Read the FKAA Rules and you will discover that any wastewater infrastructure built on private property is deemed to belong to the property owner, but is subject to FKAA being able to inspect and/or repair it, at the owner’s expense. The Rules further declare that the property owner has the duty to maintain any wastewater infrastructure on their property, and can be billed for repairs made by FKAA.
Now you understand why FKAA has always refused to guarantee in writing that they will own and maintain the grinder pumps in perpetuity. They not only have no legal authority to make such a promise, they also never intended that they would be responsible for the grinder pumps. If you signed over an easement and allowed a grinder pump on your property, you were had. Yes, I know that darned few people signed willingly. Dump the Pumps, Inc. is still very actively working to rectify that injustice and crime. They are not showing all their cards, but there is a real good reason why they are asking for possibly refundable donations again. Three attorneys have been working pro bono on this issue in the background and now two skilled litigators are on board at very reduced rate. See? Not all lawyers are evil money grubbers after all!
snake in tree

[Python Hunt] The tally is up to 66 in a state-sanctioned hunt for invasive Burmese pythons. With two weeks left in the monthlong hunt, that’s just two shy of the 2013 total. The snakes are euthanized and turned over to researchers who are looking for ways to curb the python population in Florida’s Everglades.

Only bid to finance possible purchase of Peary Court subdivision might be flawed, finance chief shows concern. Link


Peter Max visits the Key West Gallery 601 Duval St. 2/13 & 14 Exhibition  & Reception. He’s painting more like Renoir these days. He must have stopped taking LSD.

[Carpetbaggers] What happened to the Keys is the same thing that happened in South Florida. In general, the term “carpetbagger” refers to a traveler who arrives in a new region with only a satchel (or carpetbag) of possessions, and who attempts to profit from or gain control over his new surroundings, often against the will or consent of the original inhabitants. After 1865, a number of northerners moved to the South to purchase land, lease plantations or partner with down-and-out planters in the hopes of making money from cotton. At first they were welcomed, as southerners saw the need for northern capital and investment to get the devastated region back on its feet. They later became an object of much scorn, as many southerners saw them as low-class and opportunistic newcomers.
croc-giant[The Blue Hole] We Piners had to bring in heavy equipment to relocate “Big Boy”. Over the many years of eating everything from Key Deer to snacks from the tourist, Big Boy got bigger & bigger. He did nothing but eat. Everyone that came by to see the monster, came with treats. No Name Pizza was a big hit, Dion’s chicken was also a favorite. He ate himself out of his home. The Blue Hole was no longer big enough for this guy. He was relocated to Metro Zoo, Miami. If you would like to see him there show a Photo ID with you home address of Big Pine Key and you get in for free the rest of this year. Enjoy your new home “Big Boy” you will be missed
[President’s Day Sale and Flea Market] Monday, February 15th at St. Pete Church Pavilion, MM 31.3 at 8AM. This is the largest yard sale on Big Pine Key. We’ll have just about anything you can imagine: fishing, tools, parts, appliances, furniture, books, toys, linens, clothes, shoes, purses, and the list goes on and on. There will also be a silent and live auction. Preview and registration at 9:30. Auction at 10:30. Vendor spots available – $25 each.
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If the whole world smoked a joint at the same time, there would be World peace for at least two hours; followed by a global food shortage.

[“Trees removed”] Thanks to the Jersey jogger, prices for chicken are at an all-time low at Winn Dixie.


Why Germans don’t play Scrabble. (FYI: “floor sanding machine rentals”)

[“Is a .380 handgun exactly the same as a .38 handgun”] Not exactly. They are not the same size. They are not fired from the same style of handgun. They are not interchangeable like .38/.357. The .380 is the new, popular, small carry caliber that for years was thought of as a nuisance round by many–9mm being the round of choice. The .380 is sometime called 9mm kurz or 9mm short but again, not the same. Hope this helps.

If you have questions, go to any of the local guns hops. Gun folks are usually pretty nice and like to educate future gun owners. I am at the Big Coppitt Gun Club regularly and have always met friendly folks who are willing to let you try a lot of what they sell before you buy.

forklift paletts



How to choose a good pallet? (I know you’ve all been breathlessly waiting for this) Link

I wish “friends with benefits” meant your friends paid all of your bills.
toilet_tissue_adsThe damn TV has 10 minutes of programming and 10 minutes of commercials. Now the stinking web is doing the same thing. What’s next? ads on our cellphones and toilet paper?
The AARP calendar for February is here. Full Menu > Ongoing Events
[FKAA Emails] You saw in the Citizen and you heard on US1 radio that FKAA never intended to permanently delete all emails over a year old. They meant to say “archive”, not “delete” was the official story from FKAA. They were misunderstood innocents. Really? Just archiving? FKAA’s Microsoft Outlook has automatically archived older emails for many years. Do you believe that the manager of FKAA’s computer department does not know the difference between “delete” and “archive?”
Well, the official FKAA story duped the US Attorney’s office, the State Attorney’s office, and the Citizen’s editor. Below is the original email to all FKAA employees warning of the pending destruction of emails over a year old: Notice the stated implication that Florida document retention law allows the deletion of emails over a year old. Notice that any email you ever want to see again must be stored as a document.“On Friday, January 29 all emails older than 1 year will be deleted from the email system in accordance with State of Florida document retention statutes. In preparation for this change, all users should review their stored email. Should you have any policy or business document that should be kept, it should be stored as a document and notify Juliette so she can store it in our document storage system, Laserfiche.
Going forward, emails will be deleted using a rolling 12 month window on the first of each month. As a part of this exercise, we will also be deleting files from the P: drive older than a year.”
wimpy burger


[Eat S**t] Consumer Reports in January said every sample of hamburg from around the country they tested had fecal matter in it.

France called on the U.S. to lift the economic embargo against Cuba during a historic state visit Monday by the Caribbean island’s president aimed at boosting economic relations between Havana and Paris.
groundhog day looks out door
[“Sewer easements”] A simple fix for the poop grinders that will fail is to go to your local politicians house, knock on the door and hand him the repair bill. If he gives you any crap rearrange his knees until he understands, then explain to him how this will be allowed to spread among his fellow politicos so they too, understand it is not right to screw the public.


[KW Orchid Society] The Feb. 21 meeting features speakers Dan & Margie Christensen of Ft. Lauderdale talking on Vanda Class orchids, at W Martello Gardens, Higgs Beach, KW 1:30 pm; After a long absence we welcome them back with great orchids for sale and raffle; The public is always invited, free of charge with plenty of parking; for information see Link or call Marie, 305 509-7744.

[Captain Doom and Gloom] Ever wonder how the world’s richest people get that way? Simply they over charge you or over tax you or inherit it from those that did this years ago.

It’s cold in these here Keys and it might get colder. We need more fat chicks from NJ, now!
Muslims should have a dot on their forehead like Hindus do, but 3 to 5 inches deep!
If you cannot invest a welfare check in the stock market, how can you gamble in the lottery?
If I give all my gross income to my synagogue and they invest it for me tax free will they give me Holy Welfare?
Who does the job sanity testing on priests, rabbis, generals and police?
Do rabbis ever get rabies?

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