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Jerry Weinstock, M.D., Psychiatry, retired, sent yesterday:
Sloan: Teri Johnston and Shirley Freeman truly heroic women:
the keys are sacred for me-!!!!!! Natural world of the Keys were one of the great places on the planet; I hear good things about your book —-phenomenal !!! [HEAVY WAIT: A Strange Tale]
I added 6 pages onto my book anti-gill netting —one of the most destructive devices ever conceived –they have done immeasurable damage—-their past history of demolition is a horror story………!!!!!!!! Jerry
In yesterday’s post at goodmorningkeywest.com, I wrote of the angels sending former Monroe County (Florida Keys) Mayor Shirley Freeman, of Key West,
to me in a dream to suggest City Commissioner Teri Johnston
as a dark horse superior candidate in next year’s Key West mayor race.
Jerry’s second calling is the sea and the reef, and his nearly finished book is about what sadly has happened to Mother Nature and the effect that has had on human beings. He told me there are stories in the book about real people and events. He has a publishing company and is working with its editors.
Mud Dawg Mike of Daddy Bones yummy BBQ sent yesterday:
Read this story. You could be on to something with your homeless for a day. this guy goes step further he prepares them for a carreer in homelessness. me personaly I never thought I was homeless if I had my van. Now they making the very act that makes our country great illegal in key west and other places. LIVING FREE!!
Homeless Man Charges $2000 For Course In ‘Applied Homelessness’
by JON DAVID KAHN 2 Dec 2013
Mike Momany worked as a contract programmer for years before falling on hard times. Now homeless in Seattle, he has been experimenting with innovative ways to make money ever since.
His main focus at the moment: a “private course in Applied Homelessness,” whereby he offers folks a chance to experience the homeless lifestyle during a three-day tour. Tuition is $2000 of which 25% will be donated back to shelters and pay for expenses, like the purchase of clothes for potential clients.
Although Momany looks at the venture as a business, he’s also hoping to raise awareness of the growing homeless population in Seattle which has increased by 15% since 2007. By offering a real life homeless experience, he’s hoping to inspire new approaches to solving the problem.
According to Momany, students will be dressed in appropriate homeless garb, given new names as well as “a simple life script.” The dense curriculum includes visits to popular homeless hangouts like the Seattle Public Library and students will be given opportunities to converse with other homeless people, pan handle and nap on benches. On one particular night, they will roam the streets at 3 a.m. Each night will be capped off with a stay in a $15-per-night hostel.
Momany’s venture is already stirring up controversy.
MJ Kiser, program director at Compass Housing Alliance in Seattle, said Momany’s tour would use up much-needed resources like housing and food, and that his $2,000 fee “could help a homeless family for two months or provide meals for all  of the folks in Compass shelters one night.”
Michael Stoops, director of community organizing at the National Coalition for the Homeless, said he thinks Momany’s intentions are in the right place, but he doesn’t think it’s right to charge $2,000 or for Momany to pay himself such a big fee. If the experience is really about giving people an inside look at homelessness, then it shouldn’t be about turning a profit, Stoops said.
Stoops says that his nonprofit coalition offers a similar program, called the Homeless Challenge where people can spend 48 hours living on the streets of Washington, D.C., with a guide who is either currently or formerly homeless. The coalition only asks for a $50 nightly donation to local shelters. “It’s not a moneymaker,” Stoops said. “We do it to give [people] the experience and to let them interact with other homeless folks.”
Nobody has signed up for Momany’s course as of yet.
Photo: Mike Momany
While I applaud Momany’s inventiveness and the effect such a course would have on mainstream people, he is dreaming (perhaps delusional is more accurate), if he thinks mainstream people will pay that much money for what he is offering. My ten years old theoretical, since I never implemented it, on the cheap outward/inward bound tour of Key West, which got this conversation started about a week ago, began with any person who wanted to tag along paying me $100 the first morning and that was my total fee regardless of how long someone stuck with me. All other costs that person would pay to other people – rental bicycle, incidentals, etc.
Yesterday, I overheard a conversation between two people where I live, which went something like…
One-third of all homeless people are mentally ill and would be in mental institutions today, if the mental institutions had not all been closed. They would be put on meds which would enable them to function okay in society, make their own way. It’s too bad we can’t put them away for their own good any more.
These two people know I once was homeless in Key West; they knew I was able to overhear their conversation as they went on about how terrible it was that homeless people could not be put away for these two people’s perceived own good.
I wanted to say, but did not, since I perceived them to bitching about something in which they were not involved and could do nothing, and I was not in the mood to endure their reaction, that most long-term homeless people I have known were homeless because mainstream living simply stopped working for them and they had no interest in returning to it. They felt being homeless, rough as it was, suited them better. They seemed to fit well into this:
This arrived yesterday from the Key West Poetry Guild:
Greetings Poets and Friends of the Guild,
Please see below for some information forwarded from Connie.
peace, love, and poetics,
Dear Poets and Friends:
There’s good news and good news and bad news.
First, a note from Sara Mathis, editor of The Weekly published in Marathon: “I thought I would contact the professionals first 🙂 The Weekly is doing a holiday poem contest for our Christmas paper. There are no rules other than the poems should be short-ish and reflect the tropical nature of our climate. There are prizes.” Entries are due by Friday, Dec. 13 to firstname.lastname@example.org. That should provide a bit of creative respite from holiday shopping! (Leonel and Deborah, can you be sure word gets out to Big Pine and Marathon poets? Thank you!)
The other good news is that, barring a family catastrophe, award-winning performance poet Sheri Lohr will be available to be our Featured Poet on Sunday, January 5. I’ll happily moderate.
The bad news: this is what comes from blank spots in the collective memory/history of a long-lived organization. We were all thrilled to name long-time moderator Allen Meece our Unsung Hero for this year. When I spoke to him last night, he brought up the question of our not being an official 501( c)3 organization. That raised a niggling doubt, but I felt the CFFK would make that decision, and they have. Dianna Sutton phoned this morning to report she could not find us so listed—because, of course, we aren’t. The question is, now, should KWPG be at least registered or/and incorporated as a non-profit and perhaps even seek charitable status? We’re certainly as charitable as, say, Impromptu Concerts. I have a call in for advice from my favorite lawyer/poet. Let’s take an e-straw poll. What do you think? Send your comments to me at email@example.com; I’ll collect them and if there’s disagreement call a meeting for all of us to talk about it.
Meanwhile, happy holidays.
All best wishes—
Vicki Grace Boguszewski, MPH, CHES
Corresponding Secretary of the Key West Poetry Guild
Board of Directors GLEE Community Garden of Key West
For my poem in the Marathon contest:
The Florida Keys –
Where people accused of being
weirdos some place else
can come mingle with real weirdos
If the Guild is not a 501(c)(3) and is receiving donations, the donatons are not tax deductible to the donors and are income to the Guild. I don’t know where the Guild gets is funds. I have never paid a penny in dues, nor for anything else the Guild did which I attended. I don’t think it pays for the space where it holds its first Sunday of the month poetry readings. Perhaps it incurs expenses and receives payments during the Key West Poetry Festival.
For me, last Sunday’s Poetry Guild lightning rounds of local poets was easily the most fun Guild event I ever attended. Connie was not there. Now, the Guild goes back to a featured local poet, whom most Guild members, including me, have heard recite read many poems over the years. It would not matter to me if the featured poet was any other Guild poet, or a poet from out of town, this format simply leaves me gasping for oxygen and not interested in being there. I love the lightning rounds, but what really would get my juices super flowing would be an evening of spontaneous poetry, which, in my past experience trying to get only one lightning round of spontaneous poetry, would be viewed as the work of the devil.
On another federal law question, probably a state law question, too,
yesterday brought an email from an old Vanderbilt college fraternity brother, who was president of the fraternity our senior year. He comes down to Key West each year for a marijuana conference, at which there is plenty of lighting up wherever they are in Key West, I suppose anything can be legal for a special occasion which drains heap wampum out of visitors wallets into local business cash registers. Not that I think there is anything particularly wrong with smoking weed; it’s a molecule compared to drinking booze, of which plenty also accompanies the weed-lovers’ annual visit in Key West. I’m allergic to both escape mechanisms, have to experience life’s ups and downs without anesthesia.
Holly and I are visiting again. We arrive tomorrow and stay through Saturday and would love to see you. Will you be around? We’ll be at the Pier House.
Hi Paul, Holly – Good hearing from you, welcome back to Key Weird.
I be around, moved back down here from Little Torch Key late August. How about late breakfast at Harpoon Harry’s Friday or Saturday? I’m snowed in, so to speak, tomorrow and Thursday, unless you want to join me at Daddy Bones BBQ’s Open Mike Thursday night. Dang good BBQ and fixings, even have collard greens and corn bread.
Please leave the real snow up there 🙂
Great! Let’s count on Friday. Look forward to seeing you and discussing the state of Alabama football. Or football in the State of Alabama.
Speaking thereof, I spoke on marijuana to the Anniston Rotary Club last month. Made it out alive!
Anniston, Alabama, about 50 miles east of Birmingham (my home town) on I-20 headed to Atlanta, Paul’s hometown is Nashville
Okay, say around 10:30 a.m. Friday at Harpoon Harry’s?
I imagine a lot of weed is grown around Anniston, sort of like Baptists toting a bottle of whiskey around in the trunk of their cars, they don’t talk much about it.
On Alabama football, see my post today (Tuesday) at www.goodmorningfloridakeys.com.
Clicking on its title over the clown should get you there at anytime. Scroll down to discussion with a Wisconsin Badger amgio. I pretty much guarantee nothing like that is being reported or batted around on blogs in Alabama, or anywhere on this planet.
“Snapped” – resign to run law, Key West 2014 mayor’s race with peculiar twists and turns; something was pulling the strings in the Iron Bowl, there are more important things than football; starving artist, poet, writer hoping for a moveable feast; shaman ramblings, Florida Keys sacred vortex threatened by invasive species; nice, sweet, safe-looking, the most famous woman in America, perhaps in the whole world
Posted on December 3, 2013 by Sloan
The novel promoted at the end of that post takes chivalry way above and beyond and below anything we ever dreamed or discussed openly or in mystic goodies fashion back in our day at Kappa Alpha Order, where our alma mater was going 0-10 on the gridiron, which had something to do with me going to law school at Alabama without even thinking of applying to Vanderbilt Law School. The legal wrangles in the novel weren’t taught to me at Alabama Law School, and I sort of doubt ever were taught at Vanderbilt Law School, or in any law school on this planet.
The www.amazon.com kindle version of Heavy Wait can be previewed gratis from the beginning of the book though the first page of the third chapter. That’s the tame part of the tale.
But then, my memory might be failing, maybe I gave you the trade paperback version some time ago?
From amazon.com, click on link to get there.
Heavy Wait: A Strange Tale by Sloan Bashinsky (Oct 28, 2013)
- $9.95 Kindle Edition
- Auto-delivered wirelessly
Meanwhile, I had intended to go to last night’s city commission meeting
and hear the Truman Waterfront miseries report from the City Manager early in the meeting, but by the time I woke up from a late nap and got my wits about me, I had spaced out the meeting. You can read the Key West Citizen’s report at www.keysnews.com. Someone told me just the other day that you can read the Miami Herald and New York Times online for free, but you pay to read the Citizen online.
I tooled around on my bicycle last night, wondering what amusing thing I might find.
The usual vicious van dweller criminals were not at Higgs Beach, which puzzled me, since they always are at Higgs Beach that time of evening. Maybe they were all in the pokey on Stock Island? Whatever, I pedaled expectantly into Old Town, down Duval Street, past Jack Flats, past Fleming Street where I once had slept nights in a doorway next to the bookstore, the only bookstore now in Key West, the doorway where I dreamed of writing Heavy Wait, but did not understand the dream until I was in Helen, Georgia two days later and a street performer their told me of a movie he had dreamed up, but first it had to be written as a novel, did I want to hear about it? Sure. He told me about it. I said, damn, I lived half of that novel the year before. I started living the other half as I wrote it. I’m still living the other half.
Reaching Eaton Street, I hung a left to see what was showing at Tropic Cinema. Robert Redford still totally lost at sea, and other films I had not seen, but they didn’t start for quite a while. So, I kept pedaling over to Whitehead Street and hung a right and eased down to Kelly’s Caribbean,
to see if something was going on at the MUSE upstairs. BINGO! Something was going on, something a lot of people already were there to see, and more people would come, about 100 people in all it later was estimated. Standing room only.
Key West Got Talent was putting on a talent show on the upstairs outside patio. I signed up last, 24th, after being told by one fellow I could not sign up, and then an older fellow said he would see what he could do about working me in. I took a seat and waited for the talent to proceed forth. I was not disappointed.
The event host, Bob Perlow,
is a kick-ass comedian himself, apparently with heap mainland comedy experience. I gave him a 9 1/2 out of 10.
One judge, Linda Frechette,
runs Waterfront Theater. Her reviews of each talent’s presentation were pretty good, I gave her a 7 out of 10.
Another judge, Peter King, a film director, not sure all what he does in theater,
told me after it was over last night, that COCK, by Mike Bartlett, opening tonight at Studios of Key West – sold out tonight, is a must see – Dec. 4-7 & 11-14, corner of White and Southard Streets
Peter said during the show that he never gives a 10. He was the designanted assassin. He said what he liked, he said what he did not like, the kind of feedback talents need. I gave him 9 out of 10. I bet his presentation of COCK will rate somewhere in that range, but not a 10, since Bob doesn’t give 10s.
The third judge, Bethany Flores,
I did not get her bio, brought down the house when she told the suave very last talent that his rendition of “Mac the Knife” had her humping the table leg where she sat. Later, I observed Bethany was walking crooked, smelled like a distillery, as she humped my leg playfully after I told her my heart would not take her humping my leg while I got her name written own correctly so I could write about the event today. I gave her 6 out of 10. Mac the Knife tied for second.
Via applause, gasps, hoots, cat calls, cheers, the audience rated the judges ratings of the talents. Sometimes the judges were the Louisville Slugger, sometimes the ball, sometimes the bug, sometimes the windshield.
Besides 11 adults, three young violinists each did a solo. One violinist came in tied for first. I felt another, the youngest, was the best, and she did not place.
As the first violinist was playing, the one who would come in tied for first, the fellow who had told me I could not sigh up was standing just behind me and talking loudly. I was having trouble hearing the young violinist. The loudmouth had been the accompanying guitarist for the first talent, who would come in tied for second.
A woman beside me asked the loudmouth to be quiet. He said, “Show respect?” She said, “Yes.” He kept talking loud. Finally, I asked him to be quiet. He kept talking. I told him to be quiet. He leaned down and told me, “I can do any fucking thing I want to do.” I said I knew when I talked with him about getting on the talent list that he was a total asshole. The older fellow who had let me sign was standing next to the total asshole. That was who the total asshole was wearing out with his loud mouth. I told the total asshole that I hoped I got a chance later to take him on. After that, he started going up front and placing the mike closer to the young violinists, so they could be heard better, and he quit talking so loud.
By and by, the host, Bob Perlow, said they were going to let one person from the audience come up and be a talent, if such a person was there. I didn’t see anyone raise a hand, so I raised mine. Bob invited me to come up. As I stood and the audience saw me, several uh ohs, groans, sighs, chuckles were heard. Bob never did get my name right, but then, lots of people never do.
Earlier, one of the talents, a comedian, had asked for topics on which to comment. After he fielded several comments, I said, “Biker Chick.” He said I would never get it on with a biker chick. He kept comng back to that. It kept getting lots of laughs. So, when Bob Perlow asked me what I was going to do, I said, “Tell a story and maybe do some poetry.” He said to go for it.
I took the mike out of its holder and asked where was the fellow who made fun of me never getting it on with a biker chick? He didn’t seme to be there. I said I’d long had a fantasy of riding on a bicker chick’s bitch seat behind her. And, yep, I told the story of me being picked up by a biker chick a few years ago, who had contacted me – I didn’t yet know she was a biker chick – because she needed legal advice. She said she’d gotten my name from the fellow who ran the Coconut Telegraph blog of bigpinekey.com. I drove down to her home, and this led to that, and we went to my place on her motorcycle, me on the bitch seat hanging onto you know whats, where we then died and went to heaven, and then the angels messed with her and that really upset her, and then she realized they had healed her and she wrote into the Coconut Telegraph about all of that.
After telling the biker chick story, I paused, asked,
“Okay, tell me, yes, please tell me who invented the rule that poetry must rhyme, have pentameter, be cast into verse, stay on the safe side of the fence, or be politically correct? Yes, please tell me who invented that really stupid … I can’t say what I want to say (fucking) because young children are here … stupid rule?”
The 90-plus-year old man who earlier had danced with a younger chick before the audience, was leaning almost out of his chair, wanting to know who, yes, who, invented that really stupid (fucking) rule?
“Surely it wasn’t the maker of the first stone – otherwise, there’d be no stones to break all dem stupid (fucking) slavin’ rules!”
I paused, said, “Thank you,” and handed the mike back to Bob Perlow, who again didn’t get my name right.
I went back to my seat, noticed the judges were not rating me, and I hollered out about that, but was not acknowledged. A woman sitting nearby turned and said she didn’t like what I’d put on. I said, well, I’d have been happy with 3 out of 10, or whatever. By the way, I didn’t know there were Southern Baptists in Key West. She look caught up by the short hairs. I repeated it. She looked like maybe she was looking at the devil, or at something. Some folks next to us were laughing.
I wondered why the judges didn’t rate me after I’d been invited to come up and be a talent? Maybe it was better that they didn’t; maybe that was poetry. Maybe there was a deeper message, yet another possibility I had not yet considered?
Such a possiblity occured to me just afer it was all over. It was that I was supposed to go up to the mike and tell the wacky mystical story of how Heavy Wait came to be written, which is the beginning of the novel, the introduction, just behind the kick-off poem:
Only fools rush in
where angels fear to tread,
But if where were no fools,
Who’d lead the angels?
I was thinking while I sat in the audience that I might do that poem if I got a chance to go to the mike. I had not thought once, though, about talking about Heavy Wait. I would not have had nearly as much fun talking about it, as I had telling the biker chick story again, and dropping the who invented the rule poem on the audience. Yet, that was the second packed house recently, the first was last month’s Poetry Guild meeting, when I could have dropped Heavy Wait on the audience. Last night just didn’t seem like the right time to do it, though. It was a fund-raiser, and it wasn’t a fund-raiser for me. However, if I had copies of Heavy Wait with me, I could have given copies to Bob Perlow, Peter King, Linda Frechette and Bethany Flores. I imagine parts of it might put Bethany to humping something handy.
The angels didn’t beat me up about not talking about Heavy Wait last night, like they did after that Poetry Guild meeting last month. Maybe they were okay with last night; maybe they gave me a 3 out of 10, or a 1, or a 0. Fuck if I know. The biker chick story seemed dead on organic at the time, I felt it, I delivered it, and it was a poem, and the who invented the rule poem that followed nailed it in, if people were awake. The 90-plus year old man on the front row was awake, he got it. The Southern Baptist missed the whole point. What was she even doing in Key West?
Peter King had told a 15-year old Key West High School singing talent that she had a beautiful voice, but she did not sell her song to him. He did not tell her she was pretty, and brave, and so on for being up there, He was the assassin, fawning, smooching the talents’ good looks, youth, clothing, courage, etc. was not his job. His job was to give them the feedback they really needed to progress at talents. I think the high school student tied for third. Bob gave her 8 1/2.
I went up to her after it was all over and said what I personally felt Bob meant was, when she sings a song, her emotions must be in it; she must be on the verge of tears; she must feel the love, grief, rage, the joy, and she must put it into the song so the audience can feel it; she must become the song, it is her, she is it; even put her body into it, and not worry what other people think about that either.
I said who knew where her voice and feelings might take her? Maybe to Nashville, maybe to Italy. Let her feelings lead her. Her father standing next to her by then said she had sung in Florience and Venice, Italy. I didn’t sense he got what I was telling her, but maybe she did.
I told Bob Perlow and the three judges, and Abbie who works for Kelly’s Caribbean, who coordinated and advertised the event and provided the lovely space in the trees, that it went over the top, a smash hit, and I really hoped it would become a regular event, maybe twice a month, at least once a month.
It was terrific, and it only cost $5, which went to the local ASPCA. The event was an ASPCA fundraiser. For the dogs at the local animal shelter. Bob Perlow kept saying it was for the dogs, as some people in the audience, including me, asked, “What about cats?” I think I heard Bob say the next event would be for cats.
Of the 24 talents who had signed up, 13 performed. I don’t know what happend to the other 10. I was the 14th, thanks to the invitation for one person in the audience to come to the mike. I gave Peter King and the three judges and the fellow who said he would try to work me in goodmorningkeywest.com business cards, and said I would splash the talent show there today.
For the future, the audience in the standing section behind the folding chairs was noisy until the next last talent went up and said it would be nice if they would all stop talking and listen to his performance. That had an amazing effect, they got quiet. Why, though, did that talent have to say it?
Starting at 5 p.m. this evening at Kelly’s MUSE will be another attempt at a Literature (novels, non-fiction, poetry, storytelling song) event. I will be there with copies of Heavy Wait. Peggy Butler, who used to live in Key West, will be there with copies of her newly released memoir book, AND THEN THERE WAS ONE, which seems from the cover and the beginning chapter, to be centered around tuberculosis and the south Florida TB hospital where Peggy fell in love with working with TB patients. She told me there are stories in the book from her life, as a nurse and her time growing up and becomng a nurse. An entirely different kind of talent.
Peggy drove a ways to get down here. Connie Gilbert did a press release for Peggy’s book release. I hope Connie was able to persuade a crowd of people to attend MUSE tonight. I have not had much success doing that. Maybe I would have better success if I work something out with the local animal shelter about raising money for homeless cats.
Daddy Bones BBQ has an open mike tomorrow night, and every Thursday.
right behind Checkers on North Roosevelt Blvd. Mike said it will be fine to bring copies of Heavy Wait, talk about it. One of his employees was just in a terrible auto accident, now in a Miami hospital, touch and go. Not a happy time at Daddy Bones. Say a prayer for the man and his kin and friends.