Good Morning Florida Keys – the Keys Disease
Click this – Today’s FlaKey Drivel – for today’s ranting on just about any and every thing, and what I dreamed, meanwhile . . .
This is not me next below, but it might be a reasonable facimile of how some or even many people view me.
For people not yet familiar with the Florida Keys, depending on your outlook, they are insanity’s or sanity’s last stand in America, maybe in the world — maybe even in the Universe! You’ll have to come here, though, to understand that and maybe start feeling better about yourself. But perhaps reading some of the daily FlaKey Drivels on who knows what will help get your feet a little wet with my Muse here just below. Might help to keep ever in mind, though, that not everything in the Keys is necessarily what it appears to be.
When I started up this website in the fall 2007, with the indispensable help of the notorious “Capt. Conch” of bigpinekey.com, I perhaps didn’t realize why. But life zigged and zagged along, and, well, you can get a glimpse of that in my grumblings and horsings around in the Archives in the menu to the right. Take plenty of food and water; it will take you while to read it all. Or, to get a sneak preview, open and read some or all of the other pages pages in the menu. Then call the folks with the funny looking coats and butterfly nets to come get you for reading it!
Some of my other alleged alter egos
You may now be starting to see what folks around these parts have come to appreciate, some more kindly than others, that there’s just no telling what might up and jump out of my pen, er, laptop. Or out of my mouth. Just no telling. Meaning, I do not view life, running for public office, or whatever else heaven gives me to do as a beauty or popularity contest. I sometimes go way out of my way to piss people off. I sometimes don’t get invited out much for social events. I sometimes write about people who invite me out. I often write about elected officials, politicians, developers, lawyers, journalists and who and whatever else crosses my path. I claim angels tell me in dreams what to write about, or else. Most people don’t seem to believe me. They would if they lived in my skin, but since they don’t, I suppose they should be darn glad.
Meanwhile, anyone gawking at the pretty nature pictures just above might still wish to keep ever in mind that nothing in the Keys is entirely what it appears to be. Our coastal waters often are contaminated with human fecal matter. The only living reef in the continental United States is dying as a result of that and probably other factors. The cost of living here is beyond belief. Good for you if you hanker to live down here, not good for us who do live here, our real estate market is still plummeting like a stone following Hurricane Wilma’s waltz through the Keys in the fall of 2005.
Wilma pays Key West a brief but memorable visit
Wilma’s fast-creeping high tide flooded the lower level of thousands of Keys homes and killed probably 30,000, maybe even more, motorized vehicles and no telling how many bicycles, baby strollers, skate boards, lawn mowers, weed whackers, TV sets, stoves, refrigerators, dishwashers and air conditioning units, not to mention providing a landfill of ruined sheet rock, plaster, wiring, plumbing and furniture, and dead trees and shrubs that took contract haulers months to pick up and take out of the Keys to wherever they dispose of such things out of our sight and mind.
Our county and city governments are candidates for bankruptcy court and/or the Saturday morning cartoons. We have, not necessarily totally unrelated, if you are into symbolism, a staphylococcus pandemic, MRSA it’s generally called. (See “MRSA cure” page in the menu for treatment method. Not a joke, this a survival kit.) We have more booze and narcotic consumption, and maybe more churches, and almost certainly more homeless people per capita, again not necessarily unrelated, than any place you are ever likely to find in America. Despite mucho spraying, we usually have a healthy population of starving mosquitoes during the warmer months, and now some of them critters carry dengue fever, which you never hear about either in Tourist Development Council advertisements. The TDC doesn’t tell you about our MRSA pandemic, either. The warmer months (think May into early November, to be historically comprehensive) are when hurricanes sometimes come calling. Yet we call it Paradise and view it as a nation unto itself.
Old Seven Mile Bridge (left) and the remains of old Bahia Honda Bridge (right), where the trestle was added onto the railway bed for motorized vehicle traffic. A beautiful state park, Bahia Honda, lies a few miles below Seven Mile Bridge, just above Big Pine Key. The left-hand photo at the very top of this page is a later version of Seven Mile Bride, and the right-hand photo at the top is another view of the old Bahia Honda Bridge. God’s country, if ever it was.
In late 2000, on the last leg of my move from Maui to Key West on a Greyhound bus (don’t get me started on that wacko story), I personally relocated the Mason-Dixon line to the center of the modern Seven Mile Bridge. The original bridge built by Henry Flagler for his Overseas Railroad a generation before I was born (I’m 68, I think), was one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World. Or should have been, if it wasn’t so classified. After the Category 5 Labor Day Hurricane of ’35 wrecked some of the bridges again, the railroad was discontinued. Then, the only way into the Keys was by swimming alligator, crocodile and shark-infested waters, boats and airplanes, until new bridges were built and the Florida Keys entered the modern era, so to speak. In one of my prior lives, I drove a few times over those narrow two-lane bridges, with traffic whizzing 60 m.p.h. both ways — real exciting moment, meeting an 18-wheeler coming the other way at a mile a minute. Today, parts of the remaining, amazing, picturesque old bridges are used for walking, bicycling and fishing. Other parts are closed off and sometimes get used or blown up in movies. And sometimes, it’s said, people get hanged off the old bridges, maybe politicians sometimes.
Which all brings me to yet another reason for this hugely uncommercial website. No, not the lovely pirate wench somewhere up above, who, along with her siren friends, already picked your pockets cleaner than a whistle with you all the unwiser. This howling at the moon and stars has turned out to be some sort of off-beat rag newspaper or book, or, as some say, rumor mill or daily news from the state mental, none of which is copyrighted, all of which is freely usable by anyone who reads it – but it is asked that it be used in context, which I realize may or may not happen. As should anyone who uses it out of context have realized by now, if I learn of it, they just might find themselves howling keel-hauled through the next Today’s FlaKey Drivel missive.
If, after gandering this webtoon, er, page you still feel adventuresome, you might wish to check out the horny soap opera not necessarily related to bigpinekey.com, in the Big Pine Key: Heart of the Resistance file in the menu on the right-hand side of this here homepage. It contains posts selected from the Today’s FlaKey Drivel file that are particularly related to Big Pine Key and its nearby environs. That’s why I keep providing the indigenous weblink: bigpinekey.com. I sometimes live on Little Torch Key, the next Key down US 1 from Big Pine. If ever there was a redneck section of the Keys, this are it.
Big Pine Key natives watching the invasive species come ashore
Even lawyers pretending to be humans are tolerated in the Keys – professional curtesy.
Sloan Bashinsky, ex-lawyer, local runaway and otherwise dubious character
past-life photo (2006)
later incarnation, 2011, due to clean living (no sex, no loving, no boozing) for far too long to suit me, so I regrew the beard hoping for a different outcome, LOL so far…
After some months of goodmorningbirmingham.com (my home town) being up and running, this comment came in, which was caught by my spam filter:
“It’s a good shame you don’t contain a give money press button! I’d definitely give money for this fantastic web page! That i think in the meantime i’ll be satisfied with bookmarking together with putting an individual’s Feed that will my best Msn balance. That i appearance ahead that will recent messages and definitely will promote the web site utilizing my best Facebook or twitter team.”
To which I replied:
“Well, if you feel overwhelmed to give me money, my snail mail address is Sloan Bashinsky, 1031 Grand Street, Little Torch Key, Florida 33042. I would be pleased to accept cash (US preferred, but probably can make do with Canadian and Euros through local banker buddy), personal or corporate check, money orders (US Postal work best), Western Union wire transfer, and, if you are so inclined, I can provide bank wire transfer info. If you still are holding Confederate currency and want to get rid of it, I have some friends from one of my prior lives who’d love to have it, maybe even pay me something for it.”
Now that my mind’s on this topic, gold and silver, platinum, pearls, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, saphires, and kindred precious might work pretty good, too.
Suddenly converted back to piracy, I was compelled to add that lusty news to the two Keys websites.
You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
For something just as or maybe more weird, click on this link: goodmorningkeywest.com