July 1st, 2008
Sport Diver Magazine Article
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Quote from the article:
THE 1½ HP MARGARITA
I feel that way even more several hours later as some friends and I walk into Boondocks Bar and Grill. By day, this Ramrod Key landmark gets its share of vacationers trying their luck at the miniature golf course next door. But when the sun goes down, locals tend to predominate. We've only just walked in when we're greeted by the model diver who was playing Marilyn Monroe at the festival. As we're seated at our table, Dr. Dave Vaughan, a marine biologist we'd met a few days before at the Florida Keys Eco-Discovery Center, stops by with his wife and chats about diving. Right after that, a local dive operator swings by to say hello. It's old home week.
There's a reason for the standing-room-only crowd on this particular Saturday night: Howard Livingston and the Mile Marker 24 band — a group that plays just enough Jimmy Buffett cover tunes to keep the tourists happy, plus a large list of original music that has cinched their reputation as the best band in the Keys — is in the house. They're so good that they have their own international fan club (coconutcastawaysiowa.com). At Dr. Vaughan's urging, I head to the dance floor at the beginning of the second set and watch as the band wheels out its venerable traveling icon: a 1952 Johnson 1.5 horsepower outboard motor that has been lovingly restored — and converted to a blender. With much ceremony and a microphone held to the contraption to show that it is, indeed, an operating outboard motor, the proper ingredients are added with a bunch of ice. Several clouds of green froth later, and the band whips up margaritas for everyone within walking distance of the stage.