The-Coconut-Telegraph-w-CoconutsSince 2002. Published Tuesdays and Fridays
Letters to the Editor with pictures

enterpriseI reserved a small rental truck at Enterprise in Marathon for a road trip up the east coast. I intended to go all the way into Canada and had called the Marathon number to be certain that was okay, and was told “no problem to Canada but not Mexico.” It was $576 for 2 weeks with unlimited miles. When I got there, they only had a full size Dodge pickup (half the gas mileage) or a more expensive car and I was told an extra $700 charge if I wanted to go out of state, but it could not go to Canada at all. I was told that although I called the Marathon phone, I had been transferred to national Enterprise and they are different than Florida Enterprise. Marathon’s Avis was out of cars. Budget was out but had a car available for $811 the next day. I went back to Big Pine disgusted. I called Budget in KW. They had a smallish car for $800 right away. I checked on line and found one there for $476. Oddly, it was about $800 on line out of Marathon’s Budget (but they didn’t have one anyway, remember?). I drove to KW fully expecting another run-around, but was actually supplied with a car at $476. As I transferred my luggage from a few parking spaces away, somebody snatched a bag with my clothes and a laptop in it. Lots of dishonesty out there in the jungle, folks
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[“The Old Wooden Bridge Fish Camp’s new owner, Jim Figuerado, also owns Hurricane Hole Marina on Stock Island, The Wharf Bar and Grill on Summerland Key, Looe Key Resort”] And everything he’s touched has gone to hell food-wise. The Hole is now just that, a hole serving fried crap. The Wharf’s menu is an overpriced smaller version of what the former owner did much better. The hogfish and yellow rice lunch special at the Wharf was “Mexican hogfish” according to the bartender a few weeks back. Looe Key Tiki is all but lost, more bar food under a hot tiki. These are my personal Bum Farto observations.

The quality of food in the Keys has dwindled with the insurgency of northerners coming down and buying the Keys up. The food prepared in the above mentioned places also tells me a lot about the palates these supposed foodies moving down here have. Sports bar food, booze and sunshine.

Just to keep things fair, Mangrove’s and Boondocks are no better, they’re serving Sysco and Philly style bar food, too.

And now Mr. Figuerado is going to ruin the backside of paradise at the OWBFC with another tiki and crap kitchen. I say we make them post where the fish comes from on the menus and let’s see who keeps coming to the Keys for Sysco shrimp

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The County is spending our sewer money to fix the boat ramp on Little Torch Key. I don’t like it, but I’m glad they are fixing something I use a lot although I wish they’d use that money to put the grinder pumps in the street.

I read that the Sheriff’s department wants to buy two replacements for the TraumaStar helicopter, to be paid out of infrastructure tax funds. Without considering the merits of such a purchase, I do have to question the source of funds. I attached the ballot referendum that authorized the extra sales tax. Do you see “medical aircraft” listed?

referendum ballot 1 cent taxBy the way, did you know that your “free” emergency chopper ride is only free in that your insurance co-pay is waived? Your insurance is still billed for the $14,000 flight to Miami (on top of the $800 ambulance call that is not “free” at all). To even get the TraumaStar co-pay waived, you have to supply papers to prove again that you are a Monroe County resident in spite of your homesteaded residence, drivers license, and voter registration being on file with the County. Have you ever added up all the police, fire, and emergency services line items on your property tax bill? Do you feel any safer? Do you think they should need infrastructure sales tax supplementation?

[Crooks] Two top executives for the Rural Health Network of Monroe County were arrested Thursday amid allegations they each stole tens of thousands of dollars from the nonprofit, according to the Monroe County State Attorney’s Office. Chief Executive Officer Daniel Eugene Smith, 61, and Chief Operating Officer Susana Lilian Carrick, 55, both of Big Pine Key, each face one second-degree felony count of larceny of more than $20,000 and less than $100,000.
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[Just call me Shorty!] Man healing happily after prying penis from python’s jaws. A Thai man is recovering from a bloody encounter with a 10-foot python that slithered through the plumbing of his home and latched its jaws onto his penis as he was using a squat toilet. Link
tourist car[Venison Viewers] I don’t have a problem with the Key deer, even though I remember when they were a lot smaller and kept to themselves on No Name Key.  However, I do have a problem with those my wife calls “Venison Viewers.”  Now that Key deer overpopulated, we have an overpopulation of crazies from the mainland lined up in our front yard, feeding them and taking pictures.  Other idiots from the wild North chase them through our back yard!  And then we get to pick up beer cans from our driveway.

These Venison Viewers don’t spend the night here at our local Hilton, Hyatt, or Holiday Inn Express, nor do they eat fancy meals at one of the dozens of high class restaurants on our island.  What they do do is trash the place, then  hurry on down to Key West.

I’m working on appraising/market study for tax credit apartments in Big Pine Key off Overseas Highway. I was looking to obtain any information into other multifamily development, if any, planned or under construction in Big Pine Key. If someone could give me a call or email me, that’d be greatly appreciated. 614-934-1064
deer-food-impaction[“Johnnes Disease Key Deer comment”] You stated the Dying Deer photo animal likely has Johnnes Disease “bottle jaw”. Johnnes edema is more of a soft swelling intermandibular edema. The Dying Deer photo and discussion from last Tuesday appears to have a unilateral firm sublingual food impaction most likely caused by facial paralysis from carotid nematodes (transmitted by deer or horse fly bite). Attached is a photo of a buck with a similar issue seen in our yard. Perhaps this nematode is easily treated with a dose of a cheap anti-parasitic medication?

I agree with the PhD “Dying Deer” comment that there seems to be an alarming lack of support for injured or ill deer as opposed to having a hospital and ambulance for the turtles, (which of course is excellent for the turtles). Does the Key Deer management program include a biologist to address the prevalence of Johnnes, nematodes, mange and other important animal suffering issues? What’s the plan

[Taxation] Thanks to screwy district lines, we currently have two commissioners residing at and most concerned with Key West issues, and two residing in and most concerned with Marathon issues. Murphy cares only about Key Largo & Ocean Reef, but will support Marathon or Key West interests in exchange for Key Largo support. The rest of the Keys has minimal representation. Neugent boasted in writing that he didn’t need the support of his lower Keys constituents because he had the Marathon and Key Largo vote. He reminds me of South Park’s Cartman saying “Screw you guys!” to the other 4th graders. His Big Pine office would be always empty if he did not have an assistant there to keep the lights on. Carruthers and Kohlhage have been far more supportive of the lower Keys than Neugent. Thanks to both of them and a little to Marathon’s Rice, but it is Neugent’s blatant and vocal disrespect of his constituents that has garnered support for single-member districts. Single-member districts still will not solve the lower Keys’ lack of representation until the district line does not include Marathon, but right now, most of the Keys have no significant influence due to a comparative lack of voting population. “No taxation without representation” was the battle cry that begat the United States from a collection of colonies, but that is still the situation. What is needed is a sense of unity in the Keys instead of separatist visions
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You can only say, “WTF” so many times a day until you just decide to start drinking.
lyrica[Lyrica] HSI reports “In a report just published in Neurology — and supported by the American Academy of Neurology — researchers analyzed data from seven different countries on pregnant women taking Lyrica.

And they found that birth defects were three times higher in those on the drug. And even worse, if that’s possible, babies born to moms who used Lyrica were at six times the risk of having a major defect of the central nervous system (CNS).

I’m talking about spinal bifida, anencephaly (where part of the skull and brain is missing at birth), and encephalocele, in which large parts of brain tissue bulge out from a gap in the skull.

And, unfortunately, it’s not just pregnant women with fibromyalgia or seizures who are at risk. Lyrica is prescribed for plenty of other reasons. In fact, almost a quarter of the women in this study were taking it for anxiety, depression or bipolar disorder.” Link

The lead singer of a Christian metal band just came out as an atheist! Link
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[Ducks] The three ducks are gone. Last year, for months, we kept seeing the 3 ducks on the way home from Winn Dixie. Then there were 2 ducks for a while. Then the last one patrolling his stretch by the baseball field. Anyone know of their whereabouts?

The Bagel Shop seems to be closed for remodeling for the last couple of weeks, although there’s no sign of it going on. Rumor has it that he went on vacation to Thailand, got laid, and is now trying to bring her back (and eventually her whole family, at which point she’ll divorce him, get half his property, and we’ll be eating Thai bagels).
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Who is going to build a Cuban restaurant where the Sea Green Nursery was at MM21 on Cudjoe Key? and why? Won’t that destroy that area? How can the residents protest such a thing?
fresh fishAgain I’ve had tourists ask where they can get fresh seafood. Unfortunately, I told them no restaurant except in Key West serves fresh fish. I’ve asked restaurant owners about this and the excuses all vary. They just don’t get it. The only place for fresh local seafood is at Fanci Seafood on Cudjoe Key and it’s raw!
South African surfer Brett Archibald went overboard in the Indian Ocean at night. He then had to survive 28 hours, braving poisonous creatures. Audio
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[Large And Deadly Nile Crocodiles, Now in Florida] Good news. Pythons and anacondas are no longer the biggest invasive species threat. Link
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[Crash Test] A vehicle doing 120 at impact is the same a two vehicles in a head on crash if both were doing 60 MPH. On a typical Miami turnpike they are doing 75+. Video

Tim Cook tweets a photo showing that Mac production line uses Windows for manufacturing. Link
turn signal left[Turn Signals] If you say please and thank you, you can’t be all that bad.  If you use your directionals, you’re definitely not terrible.  When we moved here years ago I thought I’d have to check Florida laws to see if directionals were optional on cars!  It’s amazing how inconsiderate and oblivious the drivers are in Florida, I just which people would get cited for not using directionals.  Same thing for the ‘left lane mongers’. When it says ‘slower traffic keep right’, if everyone is passing you on the right, you are that ‘slower traffic’ (maybe more than just your car speed).

But it is nice now to be able to travel freely without the traffic of this past season. I hope we never see that again. Can you believe the Ragnar Race people didn’t think they’d be a traffic problem?

[“Can’t find a good restaurant for lunch from US1 to KW”] There are a number of good restaurants along the way.  Coco’s Kitchen on Big Pine has good Cuban style food in their new spot at Winn-Dixie.  Also the Bagel Shop.  Springer’s is also good.  Boondocks has a great menu selection and excellent service.  The Square Grouper is great.  Babaloos has very good food at friendly prices.  Chico’s Cantina on Stock Island has the best Mexican food and I’ve never had a bad meal at the Hogfish.  Geiger Key is very good.  And if Italian is your craving du jour, don’t miss Roostica.  There are of course the not so good places that I won’t mention serving crappy, frozen fish they call fresh (I once noticed on a “Daily Special” board that they had “Fresh Local Salmon”) Ya just gotta try a few of the above mentioned eateries and you’ll be fat as tick on an old hound in no time
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[“Do they make a toilet seat that won’t stick to my ass when I get up”] Try some WD-40 or Vaseline on the seat. Trust me
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The E.R doctor in Stock Island gave me a prescription. I took it to CVS and ask the pharmacist how much to fill the prescription as I had no insurance. She looked it up and told me $330.00. I took the same prescription to Walgreens (right next door on Big Pine Key) 5 minutes later and their price was $32.00. Why the big difference? I will never get my prescription filled at CVS again.

Vietnam vets honored in ceremony marking 50th anniversary of war. Ralph Riecker, formerly from Cudjoe Key, is one of them. Video
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[Free Magazine] The June issue of Computer Power User is here. Link

Why is it that my meds make my wife’s cooking taste like s**t?
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[“Found drone”] We were coming back from dinner and found this thing sitting right smack dab in the middle of our driveway.  It hadn’t crashed, it was sitting upright on its landing gear, no damage.  It had flashing LED’s on its underside.  It’s not one of the expensive ones, just a relatively cheap toy.  The odd thing is that there are no kids that we’re aware of who live anywhere near us.  But you’re right, if I had seen it in flight hovering over our house, I’d have shot it down with my pellet rifle. Why?  Just to see if I could!

It sure has gotten quite about the sewer game. What is going on behind our wallets?
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Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a way to really help the Key Deer, like maybe hiring County, Federal and State employees to take care of them?  have a multi-million dollar facility at the end of Watson Road? and a Key Deer Refuge Visitor’s Center?

Once the government spends all this money, maybe there will be something left over for the children and disabled that live on this island.

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[Turtle] Officer Plussa responded to a report of a possibly dead sea turtle in Big Pine Key Community Park. Officer Plussa arrived on scene and observed a lifeless sea turtle approximately 40 yards offshore in thick weeds. He downloaded his duty gear and secured it into his patrol truck, and changed into footwear for entering the water. He proceeded through the weeds and sunk down thigh-high deep into the uncompressed mud and sand. He reached the turtle and observed (based on his training and experience) it to be a juvenile Green Sea Turtle, approximately 1-2 years old, grossly underweight and appearing malnourished for its physical size. It was also unnaturally very hot to the touch. Officer Plussa attempted to revive the turtle but saw minimal movement. He proceeded to transport it to the Marathon Turtle Hospital. Once inside his cool, air-conditioned patrol truck, the turtle rapidly came to and began moving around the truck with great energy. The Turtle Hospital staff who were enroute met Officer Plussa and took possession of the turtle, transporting it back to the Turtle Hospital. It was later determined that the turtle had dangerously low glucose levels that were life-threatening if he had remained trapped in the weeds and sun. Officer Plussa later visited the Turtle Hospital and the healthy, revived juvenile sea turtle that he rescued, now named “Pistachio.”
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[Rebellion] WE WANT THE POLITICAL PAGE BACK ON THE CT!
WE WANT THE POLITICAL PAGE BACK ON THE CT!
WE WANT THE POLITICAL PAGE BACK ON THE CT!
WE WANT THE POLITICAL PAGE BACK ON THE CT!

All you have to do to have a blog fail is to censor it and only post the junk that supports your interests. It is propagandizing the media. Say whatever you want, but if it is not posted or printed the way you stated it, what good is your effort? Then, again, whoever reads that blog is suspect
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[Free Money] United Way of the Florida Keys has announced that it will distribute a total of $155,000 in grants to 15 nonprofit agencies in 2016-17.The 15 programs were among 18 that applied for funding in one of three United Way focus areas: access to nutritious food for people in critical need; early childhood or after-school care with an educational or positive behavioral component. Link
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The next meeting of our Big Pine Computer Club is coming up this Saturday, May 28, 10 am at the senior center.  Hope to see you there. Full Menu > Ongoing Events

[“Junk mail”] Opt out of pre-screened credit card offers. I was at a friend’s last year and she had a week’s worth of mail on the counter from when she was on vacation. I was surprised she had that much in a week. She said no, that’s just credit card offers. She noticed a difference in a week, but it can take up to a month. Opt out here if you don’t want them. Plus remember it’s another identity theft opportunity if they sit in your mailbox. Link
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[“Name that grill”] It looks like it could be from a Vega or Nova (or ‘Car Noba’ as we called them when Fantasy Island was popular on TV).

Watching the news on my home page really tells me we are not going to make it. Nothing important matters anymore, only the junk news, sports, movie stars and advertising. After trying six different home pages on my browser I realized all are turning into super market tabloids with junk news and baby s**t or stupid sports crap. The internet is falling apart into a trash dump!
disney-dollarsI wonder if Chamber Bucks will eventually go the way of Disney Dollars?  The Disney Dollars are now collector items and the investors did far better buying Disney Dollars instead of Disney stock. Link
TV is the media that controls the people so much it has changed a whole generation into dumbed down plastic sheep in only 10 years.
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Baby boomers used to be frustrated fat chicks that hatched kids for meal tickets, now it’s those babies that people call a baby boomer. I call them welfare factories.
ftr from the right 75h[FTR] Go ahead, ask my wife…she’ll tell you, (if I’m in earshot) that I’m rarely wrong, being wrong really pisses me off. Even more rare is my admission that I was wrong. But this time I was wrong, really wrong, and I’m happy as a clam to admit it.

One of my deepest objections to Trump was my full and complete belief that he could not defeat Hillary. I based that belief on my gut and on all the evidence that was at hand at the time that I made that decision.

Now however, every day it become more and more evident that the Trump train will devastate Hillary. All the latest polling that I’ve seen, and that I respect, shows Hillary to be an also ran.  (continued on the National Politics page …)

When the bent people are proud to “come out” and flaunt their sickness, it’s time to cull the coral. Real history shows this is the way empires fell and we are next!
rooster crowing loud[Birds] I awoke at 4:30 this morning in Maryland suburbia to the sound of my mother’s dog barking with a full bladder. I took the little mutt outside, and although it was still quite dark, there were countless different birds singing different songs continuously. Surrounded by wildlife sanctuary, why do I hear only roosters in Big Pine in the morning? Mosquito spray? All day, there are not many bird songs- osprey, gulls, mocking birds, doves, blackbirds, and roosters is about all, any time of year.
[“Chi-Raq the movie”] All that is going to do is make them more violent. What is needed is self-respect, self-discipline, and the will to take responsibility for one’s own actions. Then shoot the MoFo’s!
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