Presenting Sloan Bashinsky’s Novel, “Heavy Wait, A Strange Tale”



PublishAmerica (2006)

Also an ebook through Amazon and other online booksellers

(Spanish edition in progress)

Note From the Editor:  Key West’s Sloan Bashinsky shares reader’s thoughts on his gripping novel ‘Heavy Wait, A Strange Tale’:


Key West resident and former Monroe County (Florida Keys] Mayor Shirley Freeman recently told me that she thought she would read ‘Heavy Wait’ because I wrote it and gave her a copy, but after she started reading it, she couldn’t put it down; she loved it. When she said, it really was all made up, wasn’t it? I reminded her of the inscription: Continue reading

City Commissioner Teri Johnston Weighs In On Key West’s New Homeless Shelter

City Commissioner Teri Johnston

City Commissioner Teri Johnston

When I opened this past Wednesday’s Key West Citizen online (, I saw an article on the night before’s city commission meeting, which I either spaced out or did not know was happening. I probably had a lot more fun at Kelley’s Caribbean MUSE open mike, and then at The Bull listening to Wanda Wilder belting out one song after another.

A major agenda item reported in the Citizen was a city planner report on where might a new homeless shelter go. Heaps of suggestions, many ridiculous.

The last paragraph of the Citizen article really caught my eye:

“It’s not just a city of Key West problem,” said City Commissioner Billy Wardlow. “It’s everybody’s problem. It’s a city, county, state and federal problem. Everything is negotiable.” Continue reading

Homeless Shelter Referendum?

At the October 3rd City Commission Meeting I said, during citizen comments, that I had received an email inquiry from someone who has a home in the golf course community, asking if the new homeless shelter could be put out to referendum? I paused, taking in the somber looks on the dais, said, that was meant as comic relief, of course that was not a good idea. Some smiles. Continue reading

Polar-Axis Shift – Key West Homeless Miseries and Beyond

homeless-terroristI wish everyone I know had been with me when I bumped into two remarkable people the other day and got caught up with them, as their rich lives and deep experiences and senses of humor and wisdom flowed out of them like manna from heaven. The man is probably the most educated person I have ever known. You could sit him down in any conversation on just about anything, and in short order he would demonstrate just how educated he really is. Yet, he is content to be homeless, read all the books he still needs to read, mind his own business, and serve the homeless in his own way, every day, by helping others enable homeless people to eat and not starve.

When I asked them, facetiously, if they will stay in the new homeless rehab shelter, if it ever gets built?, they snorted, laughed. Continue reading

Facts and myths about dredging Key West’s channel wider to accommodate bigger cruise ships


Above, cruise ship leaving Key West’s outer mole pier this spring, spliced together by Matt Gardi from Will Benson’s video, “Silver Lining”. Below, cruise ship leaving the outer mole circa 1998. After I published it numerous times, the photo below was featured a few months ago in a front-page article in the Key West Citizen. The photo above, which I have published many times, has not been aired by the Citizen.

cruise-ship-leaves-Outer-Mole Continue reading

Conversations Between a Psychiatrist and a Mystic

The psychiatrist, Jerry Weinstock, M.D.,


told me … He has lived, fished, dived and swam in and around Key West for decades. For a long time, he was Key West’s only psychiatrist. He had a full practice, no blank spots on his calendar. He probably treated every writer in Key West, when he was still in private practice. As far as he knows, the only people who ever got mad at him were people he could not give appointments when they wanted to get in to see him. He consulted at May Sands School’s challenged kids program. He was the School District’s psychiatrist on call. As a second calling, he became an ardent student and advocate for protecting the sea and the reef. Continue reading

Homeless America – mainstream’s shadow, the Key West homeless laboratory might be different from the mainland laboratory

Some days, I wonder why I ever get out of bed in the morning?

 Sloan Bashinsky

Sloan Bashinsky

Father Steve Braddock of Florida Keys Outreach Coalition replied to yesterday’s post:



The gentleman whose photo leads your post today “Duval Street repeat offender”


exited the FKOC program clean and sober in October 2011 after 20+ years on the street. He is doing very well and in stable veteran’s housing on the mainland. He is a very kind and gentle man who I feel blessed to have crossed paths with. Continue reading

A Somewhat Different Perspective on the N Roosevelt Blvd SNAFU

 Sloan Bashinsky

Sloan Bashinsky

Maybe six weeks ago, I ran into former Key West city commissioner Barry Gibson, who told me his one regret as a city commissioner was he did not hold out for a faster work schedule on N Roosevelt Blvd. He said he would have been only one vote, but he wished he had held out.

When I later shared that conversation with other people in Key West, including an assistant city manager, they said that was the first they’d heard the city had any say in how fast the N Roosevelt Blvd work could have been done. Hold that thought. Continue reading

Show and Tell: Reef Relief, Cruise Ship Relief, Money Talks…

Cruise Ship Leaves Outer Mole

Cruise Ship Leaves Outer Mole

The photo above of a cruise ship leaving Key West’s outer mole pier which I have been posting a lot generated conversation with a naval officer, Jim Brooks, who was stationed at Naval Air Station Key West for many years.

Jim Brooks:  Sloan, that’s one old photo in your blog. It was taken before the harbor was dredged in 2004-2005. Do you know if cruise ships are still kicking up that much sand and dirt? Continue reading

North Roosevelt Boulevard SNAFU – Some Convoluted History and an Unpolitically Correct Suggestion to Stop the Bleeding

Sloan Bashinsky Weighs In On Roosevelt Blvd

Sloan Bashinsky Weighs In On Roosevelt Blvd

I drove down to Key West this past Tuesday afternoon (7 July 2013) to attend the North Roosevelt affected business owners meeting at the VFW, which itself is on North Roosevelt. Maybe fifteen people attended. Maybe half were affected business owners.  [Editor's Note:  We counted about twenty persons associated with business.]

I got there about 45 minutes into the meeting, so I don’t know what was said before I arrived. Rick Boettger seemed to be the host. He lives in Key West and, as far as I know, is not an affected business owner.  [Editor's Note: Boettger was the moderator, is the Secretary of the CNRAB and has worked on N. Roosevelt since 1996.]

An engineer spoke to the group for a while, then he introduced local attorney Robert Cintron whom I know pretty well. The long and the short of what Robert told the group was, as a general rule, landowners and businesses affected by road construction have no legal remedy unless their property is taken. Cintron said if there was a breach of contract by the prime contractor, DeMoya, which adversely affected the business owners, they might have a remedy as third party beneficiaries of the contract between the contractor and the Florida Department of Transportation, which hired the contractor. However, because of the third party beneficiary doctrine, FDOT’s contract with DeMoya had wording that they did not intend to create third party beneficiary rights by entering into the contract. After the meeting, Cintron and I wondered how that is legal, since third party beneficiaries did not sign the contract excluding them? Continue reading

More On Zimmerman Trial From Local Ex-Attorney: KARMA AND GEORGE ZIMMERMAN TRIAL

Goerge Zimmerman at His Trial

Goerge Zimmerman at His Trial

About a year and a half ago, a fellow living in Nashville, Tennessee, whom I call Nashville J, started corresponding with me about various goings on in the Florida Keys, which I was covering on and After I started writing about the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin case, mostly at  (I was born and raised in Birmingham, Alabama and practiced law there), Nashville J started writing to me about that terrible affair. I suppose there are around 25 separate posts on the Zimmerman/Martin case at the Birmingham website. A case for which I see no good outcome regardless of how it ends.

Yesterday, Nashville J wrote to me.

I don’t know how the Judge now keeps out Martin’s pictures and fights at school – suspension – etc.  but maybe she can.

See the Associated Press article STATE WINDING DOWN IN GEORGE ZIMMERMAN TRIAL by Mike Schneider and Kyle Hightower.

I wrote back to J:

The prosecution is fully entitled to use anything from Zimmerman’s past which seems inconsistent with what Zimmerman said in the prior recordings, videos, statements. Continue reading

Another Friendly Key West Swimming Buddy – Antibiotic Resistant E-Coli

E-Coli Bacteria

E-Coli Bacteria

This article is a sequel to last week’s Your Friendly Florida Keys Swimming Buddy – MRSA.

I don’t imagine most people people living in Key West know about red flags being posted from time to time on Higgs Beach and Smathers Beach, on the Atlantic side of the island. Red flags with warnings, unsafe bacteria in the water. Unsafe coliform bacteria. Poop bacteria.

As graphically shown in last week’s Your Friendly Florida Keys Swimming Buddy – MRSA article, MRSA in the Florida Keys tends to attack the skin and work inward. Resistant E-Coli attacks internally and works outward. Both are fatal, if not treated, and both are very difficult to treat medically. Continue reading

Your Friendly Florida Keys Swimming Buddy – MRSA


MRSA Abscesses


MRSA Before Erupting Through Skin








Editor’s Note:  Yeah, it’s truly gross, the photos get worse, and this is not the kind of stuff I enjoy seeing on the home page of The Blue Paper [Thanks Sloan! I was trying to make it attractive.]   But he does have an important message here.   Many of my friends and family members have been infected with MRSA and often its been after getting scraped or injured while playing around offshore.    Take it seriously, avoid swimming with open wounds.       –  Naja Girard

Continue on if you dare…


Continue reading

Hurricane Voodoo

Hurricane Wilma's High Tide Over N. Roosevelt Blvd.

Hurricane Wilma’s High Tide Over N. Roosevelt Blvd.

Assistant city manager John Jones told me Key West lost 10,000 vehicles during that high tide. I owned one of those vehicles, a car I had bought real cheap and had left in Key West that summer, because the front end was messed up and it vibrated something awful over 50 m.p.h.

Toss in on top of all of those vehicles no telling how many motorcycles, motor scooters and bicycles, washing machines, dishwashers, refrigerators, televisions, vacuum cleaners, lawnmowers. Toss in on top of that mountains of ruined furniture, rugs, sheet rock, plaster, wiring, in ground level homes. Toss in on top of that mountains of dead shrubs and trees. All of which took mainland contract haulers months to collect and haul away. That was just in Key West.

I received a hurricane voodoo party invitation the other day, Continue reading

Some Funny Things That Happened On The Way To The Hemingway House

issue 6 homeless w text reduced


Back in maybe September 2007, I was sitting in one of the smaller auditoriums at Tropic Cinema waiting on a movie to start. My cell phone started buzzing, so I opened it and walked out of the auditorium. I said hello. A man asked if I was Sloan Bashinsky? I said that probably depended on who wanted to know.

He said his name and that he was with a nationally syndicated talk show in New York City. He had read online my suggestion that the City of Key West offer its homeless people jobs as litter cops dressed like pirates,  Continue reading

Bon Apertif!

In its second Friday edition, The Blue Paper (Key West the Newspaper) knocked the lights out again. I feel like an amateur compared to Naja and Arnaud Girard’s investigative reporting, and Arnaud’s Technicolor editorial cartoons are a piercing howl. The second edition strips naked as jay birds Balfour-Beatty, State Legislator Holly Raschein and bribed state legislators determined to give Balfour-Beatty a free tax ride the US Government is not giving Balfour-Beatty. Then comes a really joyful praise report on the North Roosevelt Boulevard redo, which might cause great relief and jubilation in a parallel universe, but not in Key West. Then comes a deliciously ruthless expose of what really is going on in producing the “green living” water Keys people receive from the mainland, and what sure looks to me like a heap of not unexpected double talk from Florida Keys Aqueduct Authority and, not even reading between the lines, the development community. Bon aperitif! Bring lots of Rolaids.

Sloan Bashinsky

Little Torch Key