Monday, February 11, 2013

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[Too Pooped to Pope] In an unprecedented move 85 year old Pope Benedict says he doesn’t have the energy to continue and is giving his two weeks notice to his employer (God).

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[“Avocado seed”] Over the years I have grown many Avocado plants from the pit of Avocados bought at the grocery store. Here is my method-when you examine the pit look carefully for signs of sprouting. Not all pits are viable but some are. Forget about picking fruit from a tree grown from a grocery store obtained pit. My go to reference is The Artful Avocado by John Canaday published in 1973. My biggest success was the tree planted in my yard in Texas. It grew taller than the roof and started from an Avocado bought at the grocery store, no fruit alas.

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Once again the Ladies of the Moose Lodge served the most delicious meal to be had in the Keys: Salad, prime rib, stuffed baked potatoes with cheese cake for dessert. The room was beautifully decorated. The music was still going on at 11pm with dancers on the floor. No smokers in the lower room. Help us keep this great place going, as you’ll miss it if it isn’t here.

[2d Amendment] “Battle of Athens” Little known American Historical Fact. I was completely unaware of this event that took place in Athens, TN in 1946. I did not know an armed revolt on American soil by WWII veterans ever took place during our lifetime. A very sobering video to say the least. 

Now the second amendment should be a little clearer to everyone. This movie lasts less than fifteen minutes and is well worth the time. Video

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There may be more predators in the Keys than meets the eye. I lived on Ramrod for several years and only at night, something quite swift, would bolt when you got too close. My dogs would sense its presence and my younger pooch who could run like a sled dog and had lightening reflexes could never even get close to it. I am thinking it had to be feline because of its speed and lightening reflexes. Although I never got to actually see it, I did catch the blur a few times and it was bigger than any domestic cat I’ve ever met and I knew a few big ones. Has anybody ever seen a Bobcat in these parts or experienced this phenomenon?

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Semaphore Cactus

Sometimes the best revenge is to ignore them and be super happy instead.

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Last pay phones might leave Key West. Link

Finally, cohesiveness to Keys fishing rules. Link

[Zaza’s] Perhaps expectations were too high and perhaps the fare was too steep or inadequate for the local clientele. Be that as it may, Zaza fell into the same trap as many other restaurateurs who lost their shirt in the Keys. Too much attention is given to glitzy eyewash and too little on running an all embracing ambiance and fare. Successful (especially Italian genre) restaurants share a few basic attributes:

The owner or his time proven maitre d’hôtel are always at the door greeting local customers with a smile and remember their names. Pretty face hostesses do little to provide that kind of ambiance.  They only contribute to the surrounding glitz and do little to bring back clients.

Customers are always asked by the maitre d’ if all is to their liking and immediately rectify whatever needs to be adjusted. The food is the easy part: fresh ingredients and masterful culinary skill that can be repeated over and over again by whomever is the chef of the day.

Nightly specials that can be anticipated in advance also go a long way to attracting regular patrons.

Entertainment does not have to be elaborate but needs to blend with the ambiance of the establishment.

A menu that is too crowded and uses a small font, delays ordering and begs for more explanation by the staff.

Finally, the person behind the bar is, by extension, the owner’s lieutenant.  I say HE, because a straight male is more likely to bring return clientele.  Why?  Because women are the ones who bring back their counterparts to a place they enjoy.   They also do not like competition behind the bar and are also leery of their mates going there on their own.

Yes, drinking is the favorite pastime in the Keys, but an atmosphere of enjoyment makes that sport a great deal more enjoyable and less toxic to the liver. Special pricing for ladies at the bar and discounts to specials of the day to locals may also help that equation.

In summary, Zaza could have the attributes as it already enjoys a good location and beautiful surroundings.  Why is it that Square Grouper packs them in night after night and does all that without the view or off the street curb appeal? Quality and service are the legacy Zaza will need to sell the business.  Not many investors would be interested in buying the business if it doesn’t already have a proven record that can be expected to run on automatic pilot. 

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Polk’s Key West Directory of 1917-18 listed 19 barber shops in the city.

[Wasted in Margaretville] Thought this may just start your week out right. Lady: Do you drink? Man: Yes. Lady: How much a day? Man: Three 6-packs. Lady: How much per 6-pack? Man: About $10.00. Lady: And how long have you been drinking? Man: 15 years. Lady: So a 6 pack cost $10.00 and you have three 6-packs a day which puts your spending each month at $900. In one year, it would be $10,950 correct? Man: Correct. Lady: If in 1 year you spend $10,950 not accounting for inflation, the past 15 years puts your spending at $204,250 correct? Man: Correct.

Lady: Do you know that if you hadn’t drank, that money could have been put in an interest paying savings account and after accounting for compound interest for the past 15 years, you could have now bought a Ferrari? Man: Do you drink? Lady: No. Man: Where’s your Ferrari then? 

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[Can’t Lie On The Internet] This poor young lady seems to be drinking the same kool aid as FTR guy. Link

an_carolers2The Vienna Boys’ Choir, one of the best-known boys’ choral ensembles in the world, is scheduled to perform Feb. 17 at the Tennessee Williams Theater on Stock Island.

The program, sponsored by the South Florida Symphony, is set to begin at 6 p.m. and will feature 24 trebles and altos from Austria and other countries singing inspirational classical music.

History traces the origins of the Vienna Boys’ Choir to 1498 at the court of Emperor Maximilian I of Austria. Today it consists of approximately 100 singers, ages 10 to 14, divided into four touring choirs that perform throughout Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas.

Their musical repertoire ranges from medieval to contemporary and experimental selections.

Tickets for the Keys concert range from $50 to $250 per person, depending on seat location. Visit: www.keystix.com.

[Yalta  Conference] In 1945, U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and Soviet Premier Joseph Stalin to divide up the world. 

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More than 1,500 people registered to hunt the invasive species on South Florida public lands and only killed 50 snakes in the python challenge. Happy Chinese New Year—the year of the snake.

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[ZaZa etc] My experience with restaurant start-ups is that everything inside for the operation is leased. The lease for the building would be separate. The only trucks required are from the leasing company. No sweat. I wouldn’t fret too much for the family. They know what they are doing.

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[“Avocado seed wont grow”] I think that method is mainly for the entertainment of the observer.  I just push them about 2″ down into a pot of dirt and keep it dampish.  Every time I eat an avocado I push another pit into a different spot in the same big pot.  I usually have a constant small forest in that pot, not just one spindly tree.

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[National Cheney Day] “Shoot a Friend” In celebration of Vice President Dick Cheney accidentally shooting and wounding a friend while hunting quail on a Texas ranch in 2006.

I’m tired of winter. I want to fast forward to complaining about how hot it is.

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I still think Philippine Jeepneys would be one awesomely colorful addition to public transport around the islands.  If someone could import just the frame and bodies, use some eco-friendlier power plant, they’d be like a rolling art project attracting tourists and locals alike.

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[Dry Cleaning] Seeing as there are so few people wearing suits in the Keys, are there any dry cleaners still in business?

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[No Name Electric] The 3rd District Court has ruled, only the Public Service Commission has jurisdiction over the regulation of utilities. The County has no authority in the matter. Only a desperate delusion fool would think the PSC would do anything other than order that the people on No Name Key be permitted connections to public utilities. Obviously this is over, and it’s time to stop wasting taxpayer dollars going down the road to Stupid Street

Florida Public Service Commission: “The Commission must balance the needs of a utility and its shareholders with the needs of consumers. Traditionally, the Commission achieved this goal by establishing exclusive utility service territories, regulating the rates and profits of a utility, and placing an affirmative obligation on the utility to provide service to all who requested it.”

“The Florida Public Service Commission is committed to making sure that Florida’s consumers receive some of their most essential services — electric, natural gas, telephone, water, and wastewater — in a safe, affordable, and reliable manner. In doing so, the PSC exercises regulatory authority over utilities” Link

Springers-Prime-Rib00     Doerfels-at-Springers

Prime Rib Dinner    Live Music

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[Boat Names]  Visiting Kemah Boardwalk we watched various yachts coming and going.  The one that got the biggest laugh was “42-Double-DD”, complete with exhibit A lounging on the forward deck area.

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Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow …

[“Cats will kill baby raccoons”]  Technically possible, practically unlikely.  Cats nesting on the ground are much easier prey than coons, who always nest in trees.  Unless a very, very young coon fell out of the nest a cat would not likely come in contact with one.  By the time the young coons are on the ground, following their mom around, no cat would come near. 

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Loggerhead who ate hook leaves Turtle Hospital for Keys waters. Link 

[“Do not eat iPod Shuffle”] Other funny product warnings:
“Do not dangle the mouse by its cable or throw the mouse at co-workers.” 
“If this product exhibits errors, the manufacturer will replace it for a $2-shipping and a $3-handling charge, for a total of $4.97.”
Outdoor antenna: “Do not attempt to install if drunk, pregnant, or both.”
“Pregnant women, the elderly, sufferers of serious medical conditions, those who are sleep deprived or under the influence of alcohol should avoid utilizing the unit’s 3D TV functionality.” 
Software package: “Optional modem required.” 
Microscope: “Objects are smaller and less alarming than they appear.”
Toner cartridge: “Do not eat toner.”
Iron: “Do not iron clothes on body.”
Washing machine: “DO nOT put any person in this washer.”
Microwave oven: “Do not use for drying pets.”
TV manual: “Do not pour liquids into your television set.”
CD player: “Do not use the disc as a projectile in a catapult.”
Laser pointer: “Do not look into laser with remaining eye.” 
Chainsaw: “Do not attempt to stop chain with your hands or genitals.”
Thermometer: “Do not use orally after using rectally.”
“Do not use if you cannot see clearly to read the information in this information booklet.” 

County apparently ready to give up No Name power fight. Once they put up the poles it was all over but the sparking. Link

an_sun_fireWhile solar is a far less polluting energy source than coal or natural gas, many panel makers are nevertheless grappling with a hazardous waste problem. Fueled partly by billions in government incentives, the industry is creating millions of solar panels each year and, in the process, millions of pounds of polluted sludge and contaminated water. To dispose of the material, the companies must transport it by truck or rail far from their own plants to waste facilities hundreds and, in some cases, thousands of miles away.

The fossil fuels used to transport that waste, experts say, is not typically considered in calculating solar’s carbon footprint, giving scientists and consumers who use the measurement to gauge a product’s impact on global warming the impression that solar is cleaner than it is.

State records show the 17 companies, which had 44 manufacturing facilities in California, produced 46.5 million pounds of sludge and contaminated water from 2007 through the first half of 2011. Roughly 97 percent of it was taken to hazardous waste facilities throughout the state, but more than 1.4 million pounds were transported to nine other states: Arkansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, Rhode Island, Nevada, Washington, Utah, New Mexico and Arizona.

Several solar energy experts said they have not calculated the industry’s total waste and were surprised at what the records showed. While much of the waste produced is considered toxic, there was no evidence it has harmed human health. Link

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[“Little Palm Island. $940. Sold youngest child to pay”] Sell your whole family. Cafe Marquesa’s fine dinner and wine for five, $4950 and I was the only one to return home!

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It’ raining spiders in Brazil. Scratch this off places I might want to see. Video

Use your imagination. It is the concept of Spirit within you. It’s the God within you. It’s the invisible connecting link to manifesting your own destiny.

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I like the idea of “The Real Housewives of the Florida Keys” – The concept is rife with entertaining possibilities!

[Raccoons prey on box turtle eggs and baby turtles] The number of raccoons is exploding beyond what is healthy for the ecosystems in which they live. There are so many raccoons that they are affecting the population of other species which they prey on. An example of which is the box turtle. Raccoons find the turtle nests, dig them up and devour the eggs. I recall a conversation with a wildlife officer who was doing a presentation on local flora and fauna. He had just spoken of the severe drop in several species of reptiles due to predation by raccoons.  He stated that raccoons serve a niche in the ecosystems they inhabit but overpopulation has allowed them to become destroyers.

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The music during the Super Bowl show has always sucked. It’s further evidenced by this picture. 

Rube Goldberg music video. Don’t try this at home. These are professional frolickers. Video

an attack manHere on Big Pine I’ve witnessed raccoons attacking and killing a chicken, tearing its body apart between them as they dragged portions off to be consumed.

It occurred at night and the free roaming chicken was unfortunately trapped inside a dog kennel and the door partially closed, likely due to the wind. The raccoons were smarter and opened the door which they then feasted on the trapped sleeping animal is what I figured occurred.

I came out during the night with a flashlight to witness the scene when all the squawking occurred, only wished I brought my video camera with me as it was glorious sight to see.

I now always dump my chicken bones and leftovers in the yard to keep my new friends happy and the annoying chickens out of my trees, eyesight and earshot.

Long live the raccoons!

TV needs to show “Wounded Warrior” ads every day during prime time on every channel so that the cost of frivolous wars is made unavoidably clear to even the most unconcerned citizen.

If you don’t like drone strikes just watch one of those “Wounded Warrior” ads on TV. 

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In Beijing, they are not called feral cats, they are called breakfast!

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[“Little Palm Deer for Dinner”] Can’t say I’ve ever even imagined dinner there, although I’ve done the brunch a bunch in the years I’ve lived here. When I take my boat over, they make me park in the back. Brunchers aren’t allowed on the beach either. I do hope the food was as memorable as the experience was as many people dream of dining on an island in the tropics.

How do you know that deer wasn’t trying to save his cousin from your plate? How many cows did you see on that island? None! But you saw deer didn’t you. 

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Why do we maintain our massive defense spending beyond the rest of the World combined?  Why isn’t the rest of the World as worried (paranoid) about each other as we are?  Do we live in our own little bubble?   I know that defense spending means jobs,  just like all Government spending.  But with our infrastructure falling apart, as evidenced by our roads down here, couldn’t we divert some of the tax moolah to fixing our fundamental necessities?

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We paid off the cost of WW2 by raising the taxes on the wealthy until they squealed like stuck pigs.  We are now in a similar situation due to the financial crap that went on during the bubble where they made most of their money anyway.   We must now commandeer a bunch of money from the “haves” via taxes to redistribute among the rest of us to get things going again.   In spite of how unfair it seems, we will all be better in the long run.

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“The most perfidious way of harming a cause consists of defending it deliberately with faulty arguments.” Nietzsche

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[Restaurant Review] I went to try Mangrove Mama’s last night with our folks. What a giant disappointment on every level; food, service, price point, presentation, etc. That is my unfortunate opinion. I was hoping for a different outcome. Do the Lower Keys ever need more places for good affordable food.  ~info@hudsondesign.us

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The only way to handle a terrorist-hostage situation is to kill everyone involved as quickly as possible and restore the scene to normalcy, almost as if it never happened.

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everything11[Captain doom and Gloom] A close mind is a difficult thing to open, I know Ed very well!

If they allow all the illegals to have citizenship how much will that cut down Welfare and Medicare to us?

Ever wonder about pocketbooks which have been on the ground or set down in some unknown place then put onto a food counter or table top? How about elbows from bar top to bar top and counter to counter? What was under that barstool when you moved it? People open can goods without washing the can, pop a soda without washing the bottle. If we feared all the germs we would encounter in a day, we would never leave the house.

“get to Happy Hour 15 minutes early, eat and drink until HH ends, leave a crappy tip, and go home” At the retail prices, we peasants could not afford any other way.

3 days is all it takes for the public to be brainwashed clean of any given subject in the media, TV or online. That cycle is now a standard for advertising in case you have not noticed. When is the last time you tried to think for yourself?  

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You do realize that after 8 years of Obama rule and a new Democrat emerges, George Bush will still be the blame for the mess our Country will be in 2016. 

1. Sometimes even the tiny amount of 1/4 truth doesnt even fit the bill. Weve been reading on here how our President is the one responsible for the possible sequestration. Truth is there were 174 Republicans that not only approved of the Sequestration but actually casted their votes for it. Heres just a few of the top ranking Republicans that were all for it before they were against it that now are acting like they have been against it all along.

 Gus Bilirakis (Florida)

John Boehner (Ohio) talk about political flip flops.

Gus Bilirakis (Florida)

Eric Cantor (Virginia) yes its true even Tea Party folks voted for it.

Mario Diaz-Balart (Florida)

Darrell Issa (California)

These are just a few of  the 174 Republicans voting for it. Somehow this information never seems to make it to the postings.

2. Did you hear the one about how the Muslim world has exploded in the last 4 years? Think back folks of the date 9-11, the continuous wars between Israel and the Palestinians (since well before we were all born) in fact think  back to the times when Jesus was born and the the entire history of the world. I dont think the world has only seen the Muslim world explode in the last 4 years folks. Yep, at times even a 1/4 truth is far beyond the reaches of ones grasp.

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More people trust Obama on every issue then they trust Congress on the same issues. 
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President Dumbshit – Bush Bloopers  Music Video

Obama’s drone strikes are efficiently working and making him look good so, of course, the repubs are going to screw with that.

FROM THE RIGHT

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scott11Yesterday a poster took a shot at Governor Scott, especially about his endeavor to save you and I tax dollars wasted on welfare.  One of the many programs that Governor Scott set out to reform was TANF. TANF is a special type of welfare that gives the recipient cold hard cash money. The recipient must know the script, those who can say the right words get cash in hand. Scott did some research and determined that the program was a money pit for fraud.  He pushed legislation that called for drug testing of new applicants.  Let me repeat for our leftist friends.  New applicants were the only ones who were subjected to drug testing under Scott’s legislation. The legislation passed and went into effect in July of 2011. The legislation had been subjected to left wing propaganda for months prior to its enactment. It’s a safe bet that most of the prospective applicants knew of the drug testing requirement long before it went into effect on July 1, ’11.  Because they knew, they didn’t even try to apply.

 Let’s take a look at the number of new applicants for the months PRIOR to the implementation of the drug testing requirement. In May ’11, prior to drug testing, there were 3615 new applicants, in June, 3741. Please note the increase. Then in July ’11, the very first month of drug testing, there were 2972 new applicants (a nice drop). In August there were 2129 (another nice drop), by September there were only 1927 NEW applicants. Deer Friends, the threat of drug testing alone cut the number of new applicants by about half. That is success, huge success by any measure.

Scott’s program would have resulted in estimated savings of about $1.84 million in the first year. Those are not my numbers, I didn’t make them up. The numbers are from Florida’s Department of Children and Families.  You can check it out for yourself at: Link

The left and its media camp followers attacked the program and cleverly convinced nearly everyone that Scott had imposed drug testing on all welfare users. Once again, listen up: Scott’s program only affected NEW applicants to one small component of welfare, the cash in hand program called TANF.  I challenge any and all in the CT community to find a single media report that makes it clear that Scott was only testing NEW applicants. I’ll repeat the offer of two Rob Roy’s at Springer’s to the first poster who can find any such news report.

an_StocksAnd so Scott was pilloried for no good reason.  The lawsuit filed against the State was sponsored and funded by the ACLU.  It certainly is revealing that yesterday’s knocker of Governor Rick Scott thinks that Scott being precluded from saving Florida tax payers an estimated $1.8 million dollars in only one year is amusing. It figures.

Part 2) Governor Scott is a favorite target for our friends from far left field.  One of the reasons is that he refuses to kowtow to the public service unions and special interests. Please consider this:  Prior to Scott becoming governor, nearly all FloridaState employees received, among many others bennies, a massive benefit from the state.  That bene was membership in the Florida Retirement System.

Deer Friends, what you are about to read is hard to believe, but it is absolutely true. For my entire career as an employee of the State of Florida, I paid not one cent into or for my FloridaState pension. Not a penny. I was a state employee for over 30 years. My pension, (because I was law enforcement, is more generous then most) rewarded me with about 60% of the average of the top five years’ salary.  The average non law enforcement employee will receive about 40% +/-.

The pension rules provide that each Florida Retirement System pension recipient receives a 3% annual increase in their pension benefit. Pretty cool, huh? I’ve been retired for 14+ years. You do the math.  And remember I paid not a cent into it. Does that make you, Sir or Madam Tax Payer feel all warm and cuddly. 

Governor Scott recognized the FRS as being a huge rip off of tax payers.  Scott sought and passed legislation that required all state employees to actually contribute a percentage of their salary to their pension plan. How shocking, the public employee unions were apoplectic. Deer Friends who are in the private sector, those facts must be disturbing. Thanks to Governor Scott, his FRS reform has saved taxpayers millions, and has thoroughly pissed off a lot of state employees. As for this old fart, I didn’t even start to think about retirement until I had about 20 years on the job.  I know to an absolute certainty that I would have continued to serve even had I been required to contribute to my pension.  It would have been fair and I loved my job. Just for the record, I keep in contact with my old office, not a single employee there has left state employment because they had to contribute to their pension. And there is no shortage of new applicants.

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A tip of the FTR Fedora to Governor Scott and his zeal to save you and I big tax dollars.

Part 3) It is mind boggling, but Christopher Dorner, proud murderer and cop killer, has a growing following of supporters from left field.  Some call him a “Dark Knight” Read it and weep. Link

Respectfully submitted:  FTR@bellsouth.net