This is the time of year that we at WLRN like to think back and remember the stories that we found especially entertaining – the kinds of stories that put Florida on the map through such twitter accounts as @_FloridaMan, @_Flor1daWoman and, of course, Seth Meyers’ Late Night Show Game “Fake or Florida?”
Who knew gambling would be a required part of a political election? In Bradenton Beach, “drawing lots” is part of the city’s charter in deciding some elections. Having spent a few years in the Sin City, this story was Morning Edition host Luis Hernandez’s top pick.
A story that could easily be from Miami’s Cocaine Cowboy era, WLRN’s America’s Editor Tim Padgett picked this story from Venezuela. Just so you know, 800 kilos is roughly 1,760 pounds; they pled not guilty.
Revenge killing smoked shark dip anyone? It’s on the menu in Allen Engelman’s house. After the 28-year-old got bit in the hand, he took his son out for a little bit of payback. WLRN digital editor Maria Murriel wants to know how Engleman knew it was the same shark.
It existed 80 years ago, but the Monroe County Commission is hoping to bring it back: a train to the Keys. It may not such a crazy idea, but Nan Klingener in our Southernmost Bureau points out some clear practical concerns. Either way, it got some people in the Keys feeling like Bart Simpson’s neighbors in Springfield.
In South Florida ethics fines are like thong bikinis on South Beach - a weak attempt at propriety. But anchor Christine DiMattei picked this story about the Hialeah mayor attempting to pay his fine with 28 buckets of coins. The Ethics and and Public Trust Commission doubled the fine – apparently they’re the only organization that still requires checks.
Would you ever commit your greatest drinking story to the record? Apparently the Key West Art & Historical Society is hoping you will for their exhibit Bars, Brews & Blues: A History of Carousing in Key West.
“My best Key West drinking story involves a bunch of French exchange students, the imagined angry ghost of Ernest Hemingway and one police officer. And I’m not sure that I am ready to commit that to record,” said Sammy Mack of her pick.
The Republican and Democratic presidential nomination races have been providing copious amounts of entertainment over the past few months, but WLRN producer Julia Duba points out a lesser known race that might become the stuff of Florida lore. Agustus Sol Invictus is running for Marco Rubio’s seat in the U.S Senate. And admitted this to the Orlando Sentinel:
"I did sacrifice a goat. I know that's probably a quibble in the mind of most Americans," he said. "I sacrificed an animal to the god of the wilderness ... Yes, I drank the goat's blood."
And finally, on the heels of Art Basel where everything becomes art for the week – even, to some, a stabling - hundreds of Cafe Bustelo coffee cans washed up on the beach. But WLRN’s editorial director, who can’t drink a lot of caffeine pointed out the only thing missing from the pallet of the beach was the green of descafeinado.
A photo posted by Brook C ✂️ (@brookamanda) on
Dec 8, 2015 at 7:53am PST