This isn’t St. Barth’s! It’s Key West, Florida, Home of Some Real Honky Tonky Fun
December 31, 2011

Taking the tourist train around Key West is fun… look at this old style Hemingway-era house.

Taking the tourist train around Key West is fun… look at this old style Hemingway-era house.

Here’s a pimpy ride I really dig.

Here’s a pimpy ride I really dig.

This is the END of Route 1, the end of the East Coast of the US, apparently this sign gets stolen every night.

This is the END of Route 1, the end of the East Coast of the US, apparently this sign gets stolen every night.

Xmas décor is kitschy.

Xmas décor is kitschy.

Beautiful sculpture on the road… note other faces in the train cars behind me.

Beautiful sculpture on the road… note other faces in the train cars behind me.

Lots of interesting garbage receptacles.

Lots of interesting garbage receptacles.

It’s always Halloween in Key West.

It’s always Halloween in Key West.

Weird inappropriate outdoor tourist sculpture, note the fish on the handlebars. Can you believe this is 2012?

Weird inappropriate outdoor tourist sculpture, note the fish on the handlebars. Can you believe this is 2012?

This kid gets it, he’s into the SpongeBob sculpture… and those are real sponges.

This kid gets it, he’s into the SpongeBob sculpture… and those are real sponges.

Kids screaming everywhere add to that family ambience we love.

Kids screaming everywhere add to that family ambience we love.

Cool bums populate the street, this skateboard dude makes palm-frond hats.

Cool bums populate the street, this skateboard dude makes palm-frond hats.

Another Key West hottie… you pay a buck to hold the snake for the photo.

Another Key West hottie… you pay a buck to hold the snake for the photo.

The Audubon museum is actually fun.

The Audubon museum is actually fun.

Audubon only visited Key West to do a few bird pictures, but I learned that he SHOT each and every bird before he painted them, so they were all DEAD subjects! That’s why his action portraits are so ballet-ish, he posed the birds from his imagination, not from observations in the wild, that’s why they all look so surreal – strange, huh?

Audubon only visited Key West to do a few bird pictures, but I learned that he SHOT each and every bird before he painted them, so they were all DEAD subjects! That’s why his action portraits are so ballet-ish, he posed the birds from his imagination, not from observations in the wild, that’s why they all look so surreal – strange, huh?

That cormorant never landed on a branch, it’s a swimming bird. This Audubon thing is stranger than I understood. For example, his mother was a “metisse” from the Dominican Republic and he went bankrupt before becoming an artist.

That cormorant never landed on a branch, it’s a swimming bird. This Audubon thing is stranger than I understood. For example, his mother was a “metisse” from the Dominican Republic and he went bankrupt before becoming an artist.

Cruise ships pull in, they’re worse than floating cities, just imagine the environmental impact of these floating sewage factories.

Cruise ships pull in, they’re worse than floating cities, just imagine the environmental impact of these floating sewage factories.

So let’s find some real art… I went in search of Monkey Tom, the local hobo artist who’s lived here since the 60s. I found this painting he did in a bar. It’s the long arm of the DEA shaking a local fishing boat down… see the bales of pot falling out of the fishing boat?

So let’s find some real art… I went in search of Monkey Tom, the local hobo artist who’s lived here since the 60s. I found this painting he did in a bar. It’s the long arm of the DEA shaking a local fishing boat down… see the bales of pot falling out of the fishing boat?

No one in town would sell me a Monkey Tom painting, the locals won’t give them up for any price, especially not to a tourist… WAIT… here he comes now! We’re in luck!!!!!!

No one in town would sell me a Monkey Tom painting, the locals won’t give them up for any price, especially not to a tourist… WAIT… here he comes now! We’re in luck!!!!!!

There’s a little chicken in his trike and a little mutt in the basket in back…

There’s a little chicken in his trike and a little mutt in the basket in back…

See the cute doggie? Probably has fleas.

See the cute doggie? Probably has fleas.

Monkey Tom’s strange but friendly, I think I see a little painting in his right hand, I hope he’ll sell it to me!!!

Monkey Tom’s strange but friendly, I think I see a little painting in his right hand, I hope he’ll sell it to me!!!

We made a deal, he wanted 30 bucks, no discount. I told him I’m used to getting big discounts, but I couldn’t risk it, so I paid in full, in cash.

We made a deal, he wanted 30 bucks, no discount. I told him I’m used to getting big discounts, but I couldn’t risk it, so I paid in full, in cash.

Here it is, a real Monkey Tom painting, I love it! It’s great! Don’t bother making me any offers on this baby…it’s 100% NFS.

Here it is, a real Monkey Tom painting, I love it! It’s great! Don’t bother making me any offers on this baby…it’s 100% NFS.

At night they all come out, wow! Look! There’s another Key West hottie!

At night they all come out, wow! Look! There’s another Key West hottie!

Time to party!!! These geezers at the Hog’s Breath Saloon can really jam New Orleans style.

Time to party!!! These geezers at the Hog’s Breath Saloon can really jam New Orleans style.

Adios, Key West… though I didn’t see Dasha or James Franco, you still rock – this place is honky tonk fun.

Adios, Key West… though I didn’t see Dasha or James Franco, you still rock – this place is honky tonk fun.