Friday 5: Not Shaken

It’s been a difficult week, and I am not comfortable sharing the worst of it in a public space like this, but although I was enormously inconvenienced and somewhat stressed, nobody got hurt and nothing important was lost, so I consider myself pretty blessed.  Even in my worst weeks, my life is pretty great.

Saturday when I was out for a long walk, something flew into my eye and stayed there.  It was miserable.  I took myself home and after several attempts to wash it out, just went to bed hoping my eye would discharge the foreign matter while I slept.  It didn’t.

So Sunday morning I took myself to the ER, something I never do.  The last time was more than fifteen years ago when I snapped a ligament in my calf at work and really had no choice.  The doctor said he couldn’t see anything in my eye but I did have an abrasion.  He speculated that something flew into my eye, abraded it, and bounced out, and said it should be fine in a day or two, which turned out to be true.

Until then, I was constantly aware of this discomfort in my eye, and found myself tearing up uncontrollably at times.  It was miserable.

Came home from work early Tuesday because I was feeling physically crappy in the midst of dealing with the other ickiness (the stuff I’m not detailing).  Then my planned vacation day Wednesday (to deal with practical fixes for this ickiness) turned into a stay-in-bed-all-day day because I was still ill.  Finally felt mostly better Wednesday night and never got to finish the business I meant to take care of, so I took a half day of vacation Thursday and still didn’t get it done.

It’s been like that.

I did have a fairly productive half-day at work Thursday, though, so the trend is upward.  I’m hoping to settle matters Friday evening so I can enjoy the weekend, which will include a Halloween party at a HS classmate’s house and hanging out with the folks.

Also have to start preparing for my trip, which is exciting.  I’ve decided not to share details about it until I get back, but I promise I will.

From here.

  1. When are you the straw that stirs the drink?
    I am not nearly the drink-stirrer I once was, especially since I work in a new place and am a low person on the totem pole.  However, I have used my voice to speak up on behalf of our nursing moms.  I’ve been with the foundation for nearly two years, and the space we use for a nursing room could be a lot more hospitable.  I really think we aren’t making this high-enough a priority.
  2. Who has delivered the most stirring rendition of your country’s national anthem?
    There’s a video going around this week of Willie K singing a completely rearranged “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the UH Manoa vs. Nevada football game last weekend, and it’s quite terrific, but my favorite all time is still Huey Lewis and the News, who’ve been singing it at baseball games since the mid-Eighties.  I first saw it to open the All-Star game in San Francisco and couldn’t believe what I was hearing.  It sounded the way I think it should sound at a ballgame.  The one I’m embedding here is from a few years later, 1987, and while it’s not the best of their performances of this song, this video’s got the best audio.
  3. Who or what is stirring in your vicinity?
    The occasional car passing on the street outside.  Nothing else I’m aware of.  My neighbors on both sides and across the street all retire early.  So it’s just me, just the way I like it!
  4. What do you like and dislike in a stir-fry?
    Bean sprouts, broccoli, and tofu are my favorite ingredients, but I also like snow peas and baby bok choi if I can get them.  Celery and carrots are big turn-offs in a stir-fry.  I also prefer a light hoisin sauce over a thick teriyaki sauce, but probably the best is just some olive oil and butter, or maybe some chile oil.
  5. How do you deal with feeling stir-crazy?
    I used to go for long walks, but now I get in Jessica and go for a drive, sometimes just around the neighborhood or all the way to the office and back.  A few times, I’ve driven somewhere, parked the car, and gone for long walks in more interesting places.  I have always loved driving, but now in my second month of car ownership after four years of car non-ownership, I love it even more.  Plus the car is air-conditioned and the crib is not, a huge plus in what has been a very humid season.

Friday 5: Social Capital

Awkwafina hosted SNL and honestly, it feels more like a blip than a trend.  Sure, for those of us who were already fans and paying attention, it has certainly been the Summer of Awkwafina.  She released a new album (reviewed by me here) then showed up in Ocean’s 8 and (of course) Crazy Rich Asians, in which some people say she was a scene-stealer.

I was going to say she’s probably too edgy (musically) for SNL but it had Childish Gambino last season in a highly touted musical guest appearance, so maybe not.

If they’re serious about getting Asian actors, musicians, and comedians, they really don’t have to look too far.  I mean, why not George Takei, John Cho, or Randall Park for male actors?  Or Ming-Na Wen, Ally Maki, or Sandra Oh for female actors?  I think Kimiko Glenn would be great for SNL but she’s probably not mainstream enough yet.  Oh!  What about Jameela Jamil from The Good Place?  I bet she’d be great and she’s on a successful, highly lauded show on network TV.

Obvious musical choices are Kina Grannis (whose audience is right in SNL’s target demo) and M.I.A.

Asian musical guests (after a very quick look):

  • Black Eyed Peas (Filipino; 2004, 2009, 2011)
  • Smashing Pumpkins (Japanese; 1993, 1995, 1998)
  • Metallica (Filipino; 1997)
  • Norah Jones (Indian; 2002, 2004)
  • the Shins (Japanese, 2007, 2012)
  • the Yeah Yeah Yeas (Korean; 2009)
  • Bruno Mars (Filipino; 2010, 2014)
  • Nicki Minaj (Indian; 2007, 2014, 2018)

That’s better but come on.

From here.  Certain words highlighted in case Philosophy Mom drops in.  🙂

  1. Who or what keeps hanging around?
    This incredibly annoying sore knee.  I’m pretty certain now that I have to have it looked at, and if they have to immobilize it or do surgery and THEN immobilize it, I’m going to be sad because my new car is a stick.  Argh!
  2. When was something most recently injected into you?
    The flu shot last year.  It was my first in several years but I was at the clinic anyway for something else so I figured I might as well.
  3. What were you most memorably the chair person of?
    You know, it feels great not to have been in charge of anything for a long time.  I was on the planning committee for our HS class reunion last summer and was put in charge of our Family Feud game, but that’s hardly being the chair.  I think I have to go back to my first teaching gig when I was kind of in charge of the technology committee but not really.
  4. When did you last gamble on a decision, and what was at stake?
    I make risky decisions all the time.  I guess for serious, big decisions the most recent was accepting a layoff in place of someone in my department who was going to be laid off.  I didn’t have anything lined up, so I lived on my freelancing gigs, which meant I lost a lot of weight that year.  The stakes were not especially high, since I don’t have a family or a mortgage; yet we were talking about a livelihood with insurance.  That decision led to my being where I am now, which I am enormously happy with, and my team member is still at the firm I left, so it paid off.
  5. Where will you be heading this weekend?
    Def Leppard Friday night.  Out for a long walk Saturday.  Dinner with the folks Sunday.  Pretty mellow weekend in store, except for that concert.

 

Friday 5: Again or Not Again

Plans are set for my November writers conference.  Oh crap!  It’s in November!  That’s NaNoWriMo!  Fridge.  Now I’m going to have to work at double the pace early in the month so I don’t have to stress about it during my trip.

I’ve really been focusing on getting enough sleep on work days.  I often fail miserably, but I’m succeeding more than I used to, and it’s made a huge difference.  Yes, it means sometimes rolling in an hour or two after I usually intend to be there, but my boss has been very understanding, and I always stay late if I roll in late.

I feel like I’ve been a child about putting myself to bed responsibly.  I’m annoyed with myself.  I know a lot of this isn’t my fault: I’ve had sleep issues my entire life, and the issues I have now are searious and a threat to my health, but I’m not doing enough to resolve the issues.  There are things beyond my control, and there are things within my control.  I need to take care of the things within my control.

A coworker this afternoon introduced me to the strangely satisfying concept of soap cutting.  There are people on Instagram who just make short videos of them cutting into bars of soap with a knife.  Mesmerizing, and I’m saying this in a completely non-facetious way.  I don’t understand it but I think I’m hooked.  I mention this now because I suspect these things might make it easier for me to relax into sleephood at night.  That’s my intention anyway.

I’ve seen three films this year so far that I’ve rated in the 90s.  Eighth GradeThe Bookshop.  Puzzle.  I call that a good year.

Friday 5 from here.

  1. What is the story behind one of your scars?
    I have a scar on my right wrist.  I sliced it open with my own ice skate one day in tenth or eleventh grade, when I was still dating Lisa.  We were playing tag on the ice, and I had this killer move where I would let someone get really close to me in pursuit, and then I’d duck down, stopping almost completely while the pursuant skated right past me.  In this game, I put my right hand down on the ice to help me with braking, and my skate slid backward and right over the wrist.  Ouch.  To this day the feeling in my skin right around there is not what it was.  I think I severed things that never reattached.
  2. What’s an example of your being pretty much like everyone else?
    I really hate getting-to-know-you games.  If we all hate them so much, why do organizers of certain things still plan them?  I was chatting with a coworker who went to a conference late this past summer and she said they made them do a spaghetti-noodle-marshmallow game.  Nobody likes these!
  3. What’s an example of your being pretty much unlike everyone else?
    I prefer cold macaroni and cheese to hot macaroni and cheese.  With ketchup.
  4. Of websites you look at daily (or almost daily), which have you been paying attention to longest?
    This has to be Hawaii Threads, a local forum run by a good friend.  It’s pretty dead nowadays, but I still check it once or twice a day.
  5. What’s something you wish a smartphone was capable of?
    Underwater photography.  I think of this every time I’m in the water at the beach.  I can think of few things prettier in my near-daily life than the ocean as the sun peeks over the Waikiki condos.  I’m thinking of finding a waterproof Funsaver just to try and capture some semblance of the prettiness.  We also haven’t really reached the digital-audio-file-to-text transcription technology everyone really wants.

Friday 5: A Garbage Heap of Questions

Gearing up for another NaNoWriMo, I purchased a very short book on writing the cozy mystery.  I used kind of a how-to book for my 15 flash fictions in 31 days project in July and it went really, really well, so I’m looking for similar guidance for NaNoWriMo.

I’m thinking of revisiting a failed concept for a few NaNos ago, a cozy mystery set in an elementary school with a tweener as the sleuth.  It gives me something of a new concept in a new (to me) genre, and it has the bonus of being a good audience for a complete novel at 50,000 words.

I’m wolfing down a quarter-pounder with cheese (deluxe) meal at the McD’s on the corner, coming down off the post-concert high from New Order.  It was a most excellent show, and Kathy and I had a great time from rather good seats.

I just saw a Domino’s delivery car go through the McD’s drive-through.

I’m 59% of the way through The Bookshop, the Penelope Fitzgerald novel from which the film is adapted.  It’s rather good.  Such a completely different voice and style from Kevin Kwan’s in Crazy Rich Asians and China Rich Girlfriend, both of which I enjoyed.

I want to be a writer whose fans enjoy his voice.  I enjoy my voice, although I have to admit I’m getting tired of it, and I’ve been playing around with some variations to see if they fit.

In John Steinbeck’s Sweet Thursday, the sequel to Cannery Row, the author refers to himself in the prologue, describing a conversation between him and one of the characters.  I might be remembering some of this incorrectly, but the gist is that the writer agrees to keep his flowery prose limited to a few chapters, and agrees further to title the chapters “Hooptedoodle” so the reader who avoids flowery prose can just skip ahead.

When Steinbeck wants to be showy, he can really be showy.  It’s some lovely writing.  But it’s all Steinbeck’s voice, the regular chapters, the intercalary chapters, and the hooptedoodle chapters.  I want to be this consistent.

No problem, right?  I mean Steinbeck did it.

Sweet Thursday is not one of his stronger novels, but it’s one of my favorite.  I think it’s my third favorite behind The Grapes of Wrath and Of Mice and Men.  For some reason I like it better than Cannery Row, ‘though it’s not nearly as good.

Friday 5 from here.

  1. What should be the collective name for accountants?
    A reconciliation of accountants.
  2. What should be the collective name for cafe baristas?
    How about a misspelling of baristas?
  3. What should be the collective name for tattoo artists?
    Two other respondents suggested a sleeve of tattoo artists, which I totally love, but since I refuse to copy, how about a permanence of tattoo artists?
  4. What should be the collective name for people who vape?
    A cumulonimbus of vapers.
  5. What should be the collective name for people in your profession or hobby?
    A futility of writers.  A paragraph of writers.  An epitaph of writers.  Ooh yeah, let’s go with that one.

Friday 5: Over Under Sideways Down

Jessica being towed six days after I bought her.

From here.

  1. What are you so over?
    Besides the hill, which I don’t think answers the intended question, I’m so over being a bus commuter, and thanks to Jessica (the name of my new car), I don’t have to think about it anymore.  I’ve gone though periods in my adult life when I’ve been a bus rider, and for the most part I don’t mind it much, but this last time it was four years, and I just couldn’t do it anymore.  I’ve been trying to ramp up my side work, and the three hours of commuting were hampering my hustle ability.
  2. What’s something you’ve got under wraps?
    Not totally under wraps, but it looks like my company is sending me on a trip to a writers conference.  Details later, I promise, but it’s almost as far away from home as you can go and still be in this country, and I’m pretty excited.  I was always mildly annoyed that when I was teaching, other teachers were asked to travel to conferences on the schools’ dimes, and I got sent to stuff on weekends at local schools.  Those were pretty great, but man did that seem somewhat unjust.  So yeah, this will be my first trip for work on which I wasn’t accompanying a hundred seventeen-year-olds.
  3. What does it take to get you sideways, and what’s your preferred method?
    I’ve never been sloshed, mostly because alcohol makes me morose.  After a couple of beers I decide I’m sad enough and don’t need any more.  As a result, I’m a horrible lightweight.  At my goodbye get-together when I left my last school, I had a beer and then a mind eraser, and I had to walk around the park a few times before driving home.  I wasn’t drunk but I was pretty woozy.  I’d say my preferred method is frozen strawberry margaritas, but usually I just have a couple of brews.
  4. What’s coming down the pike?
    New Order concert this Friday, and Def Leppard concert two weeks later!  I’m seeing Def Leppard alone (I go to most of my concerts alone), but I’m seeing New Order with one of my HS classmates, a friend for a million years whose BF doesn’t want to see New Order.  I think of all my female classmates, nobody makes me laugh as much as this one, so it’s going to be fun.
  5. What’s the last thing you read directions for?
    Is a recipe directions?  If so, I read directions a couple of hours ago when I wondered how difficult it is to make cabbage tsukemono.  If not, I had to read directions Friday for filling out some paperwork for this work trip.

Friday 5: “Nine times?” “Nine times!”

you shoot a lot of photos before lucking into this.

From here.

  1. If you were to play hooky on your next regular work day with no negative consequences, and if you could only spend the day by yourself, what out-of-the-house fun activities would you pursue?
    Well it happens that I took a vacation day today.  My brain’s been a little fried at work lately, and I had a big deadline to take care of recently so I couldn’t take a day off when I really needed it.  Then I got these wheels, but the weather’s been terrible.  Even when the weather cleared up a bit, it was too soon after some serious rain, which means the near-shore waters were teeming with nasty little things that get washed out of the watersheds and down the streams into the Pacific.  It’s part of living on a small island.  Thursday was the day.  Long enough from the big rain that the water was probably okay, and forecasted to be clear and sunny.  So first I slept in (that’s not an out-of-the-house activity, but I needed it!) then went to Ala Moana for a swim.  It was wonderful and exhausting.  Then I drove counter-clockwise around the island to try out the new wheels.  Stopped at Waimanalo, my favorite beach, and sat in the sand for a little while, playing with the camera on my phone.  I had a feeling I wouldn’t get to go in, and I was right.  Portuguese man o’ war flags were up.  Then I stopped for brunch in Kailua at Boots & Kimo’s.  Their famous macadamia nut pancakes never really did it for me, but this time I had the blueberry macadamia nut pancakes and *ding* we had a winner.  Delicious.  I was in need of a nap, so I found a shady spot in a park and slept about twenty minutes in my car.  It was warm.  The nap was partly to help me decide whether I wanted to continue around the island or call it a nice, fun day already.  I would have been fine going home, but I really wanted to get to the north shore and didn’t see myself taking another day off in the near future.  The car handled wonderfully on the twisty road to the north shore.  It’s pretty fun to drive.  Dinner at Romy’s (I was the last customer before closing) was wonderful as always.  I continued through Kahuku and Waimea, then stopped at the beach in Haleiwa just to watch the ocean.  There were three young European women mimicking model poses in bikinis near a sand castle.  That was amusing for a while.  I stopped at a boba cafe (after filling the tank and getting a car wash) to get some work done and do this meme.  I’m really tired, in one of those good ways.  I keep looking at the time because I’m used to having to get the bus home.  It’s preventing me from fully relaxing, but I imagine it won’t be long before I get over that.
  2. In the same situation, what stay-home fun activities would you pursue?
    Definitely reading and watching some of the movies that have been piling up.  I’m midway through Penelope Fitzgerald’s The Bookshop, on which a recent film is based.  The movie is rather wonderful (with one of my favorites, Bill Nighy the Acting Guy) and the book may be slightly better.  I still haven’t watched any of those earlier A Star Is Born films, so I would work at least one of those in as well.  And napping!  Napping is fun when it’s not escapist behavior, which for me it often is but wouldn’t be this week.   I mean not totally.
  3. If you played hooky specifically because someone else needed the time off, who in your life would be your accomplice and what would be first on the agenda?
    I’m going to say Grace needs it the most, even though she’s been only working part time.  She’s working a new(ish) IT help desk job and she’s been too tired to do anything fun.  Too tired to sit in a dark, air-conditioned movie theater, even.  Now that she has a co-worker I think she’s not quite as tired, but she’s still a good candidate.  So we’d see a movie and drive to a library and get lunch somewhere.  Grace collects visits to public libraries, and I know there are a few remote libraries she hasn’t seen yet.  Waimanalo, maybe.  My friend Julie has a baby less than a year old.  If Grace begged out, Julie would probably be game.  I don’t think I’ve ever been out with just Julie, though, so I might have to steal Suzanne or Cindy to come along.
  4. When did you last visit a museum, and what item on exhibit impressed you?
    I took the day off from work on my birthday in January and spent some time at the Hawaii State Art museum.  There was an interesting piece by a guy who graduated from my high school about ten years before me.
  5. What’s something you’ve recently gotten away with?
    This is kind of a small thing, but between the evening when I purchased the new car and the time I registered it the next afternoon, I was driving an unregistered vehicle.  It would have been an uninsured vehicle too, but the guy I bought it from offered to keep it on his policy until mine kicked in at midnight the next day.
I think this is the painting.

Friday 5: Stay and Let Me Look at You

I’ve been crazy busy but things are calming down.  Sometime this weekend I’ll write about my new wheels, and what led to my being a bus commuter lo these past four years.

I hope to get an early start Friday morning, and it’s getting late Thursday night, so a quick Friday 5 from here.

  1. (Earth, Wind & Fire) Why are you dancing in September?
    I want to be more interesting than this, but honestly it’s really the beginning of the NFL season.  Despite my team sucking this year, I embrace the non-political conversations football brings with my friends and with my father.
  2. (Neil Diamond) September morning still can make you feel what way?
    It still fills me with tension about new school years even though I’ve been out of the classroom for some time.  I wake up Saturday mornings asking myself what I need to get done before Monday, a feeling I don’t need to have anymore but was a constant, eternal concern every Saturday morning for sixteen years teaching.
  3. (Green Day) What are some things you have to endure until September ends?
    The lunch spots on campus become noticeably less busy even during the lunch hour sometime in October.  Parking (woo!  I get to be concerned about parking again!) is also somewhat less competitive.  So, longer lines in the food court and longer lines into the parking structure.
  4. (Kool & the Gang) What place or thing is your September love?
    There was a time when Starbucks pumpkin spice lattes were a two-a-day habit.  I’m way, way down now, and almost never drink coffee, but I’m allowing myself a PSL here and there, and have had two so far since they showed up at the beginning of the month.  My September love this year is pumpkin spice lattes.
  5. (Willie Nelson) What is your September song for the rest of the month?
    So far, songs in the heaviest rotation have been Katherine Ho’s “Yellow” cover from the Crazy Rich Asians soundtrack, “Mama Africa” by Peter Tosh (really, the whole Mama Africa album, which I only recently discovered and am in love with), Elvis Costello’s “Pump It Up” (autumn always has me grooving on Elvis for some reason), and a bunch of John Mellencamp.  I recently picked up a bunch of his recent albums but I couldn’t spin them because I was doing this silly BTS experiment I’ll explain later.  I expect the second half of September to be tons of Mellencamp.

 

Friday 5: Lyrical Gangsta

I’m not as prepared for this hurricane as I normally am for impending potential disaster.  For some idiotic reason, I’m just fairly convinced it’s going to veer west and just give us some bad wind and rain without being catastrophic.  Famous last words, I know.

Local governments have moved quickly to keep us informed and prepared.  The information flow has been steady and clear, and the local daily has lowered its paywall until this hurricane is no longer news.  It’s updated the hurricane story about once an hour.

After January’s false missile alarm, everyone, including our emergency response agencies and our governor, is making sure to present as transparently and clearly as possible.  Not a bad response to something that turned Hawaii into a punchline seven months ago.

The state shut down all schools and non-essential government offices on Hawaii Island Wednesday.  Then did the same for Maui and Oahu Thursday and Friday.  I work on the campus of a public university, so when they shut down school, my employer followed suit so we could all prepare ourselves and our homes, and to keep as many of us as possible off the streets.

I’m writing this in the wee hours of Friday morning, and it’s blustery but clear with no rain.  If the projections are accurate, the storm will get closest to me between 8 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. Saturday as it veers west.  Hurricanes are more predictable than they were thirty years ago, but they’re still not super predictable, so it could continue north instead without veering west, in which case this island is in for it.

My Kindle is charged up and loaded with new material (the second and third Kevin Kwan books), so I think I’m ready.

From here.

  1. What’s a stupid lyric from a song you like?
    I like a lot of songs with stupid lyrics, but how about “Wild Thing?”  “Wild thing I think you move me / but I wanna know for sure / come on and hold me tight / you move me.”
  2. What’s a pretty good lyric from a song you dislike?
    This is a pretty difficult question to answer.  If I’m familiar enough with it to remember its lyrics, I probably don’t dislike it, and if I dislike it, its lyrics are probably one of the reasons.  But okay, I just thought of one.  James Blunt’s “You’re Beautiful,” a song I really hate, actually has a decent premise, and I like “She smiled at me on the subway / She was with another man / But I won’t lose no sleep on that / ‘Cause I got a plan.”
  3. What’s a good non-Weird-Al-Yankovic lyric about food and drink?
    Talk about songs with stupid lyrics: Ehukai’s “Molokai Slide” should have come first to mind.  I looooove this song and once recorded myself singing and playing it for my grandmother as a birthday present, but boy are the lyrics terrible.  Still, one reason I like it is the way it waxes (not really) poetic about some of the food we love here.  “I like the fishes swimming around in the sea / I like to hop ’em on the grill and cook ’em up for me / with a big pan of butter / man it can’t get better than this.”  Thinking of my beloved islands on this really strange weekend as we wait for nature (most days a blessing around here) to have her way with us.
  4. What’s a good song lyric to describe your week?
    AC/DC’s “I’m a rolling thunder, a pouring rain / I’m comin’ on like a hurricane / My lightning’s flashing across the sky / You’re only young but you’re gonna die!” (“Hell’s Bells”)
  5. What’s a good song lyric about inclement weather?
    “Stormy Weather,” recorded by a million artists, always makes me think of my favorite TV show of all time, M*A*S*H, because the song pops up in a couple of episodes.  “Don’t know why there’s no sun up in the sky: stormy weather…”

Take me back, back to da kine
Take me back, back to da kine
All ova’ mo’ bettah, Molokai
I will return…

 

 

Friday 5 for August 17: Regionalism

From here.

  1. What regional colloquialism in your area would baffle people from elsewhere?
    It’s fading from usage, but everyone still knows what broke da mout means.  You use it to describe a meal that’s so good it actually breaks your mouth.
  2. What’s something you call by a name that differs from what most people in your region call it?
    There a lot of examples, but one that leaps to mind is ice cream, which many (if not most) people around here for some reason pronounce “aish cream.”  There’s also a huge segment of our population who calls milk “melk.”
  3. What’s a normal food in your region that people in other regions might be weirded out by?
    It would be easy to pick on Filipino food but I’ll stick closer to home and say natto.  It’s a rather polarizing food, even among my friends of Japanese ancestry.  It’s nasty, nasty stuff with an unappealing stickiness and a strongly petroleum flavor, but I’ve been told by people who love it that there’s a difference between good natto and run-of-the-mill natto.  Also Spam musubi, which almost all of us adore.  It might sound gross but it’s really really good!
  4. What’s something in your area with an official name almost nobody refers to it by?
    The flagship campus of our state university system is officially the University of Hawaii at Manoa, but everyone around here calls it UH.  This offends me, since I graduated from the University of Hawaii at Hilo, the real UH.  In collegiate athletics, people refer to UH Manoa as “Hawaii,” as in “Next week the Cougars are expected to lose to Hawaii.”  With four four-year universities in the system, UH Manoa has no rightful claim to “Hawaii.”
  5. What are the names of some convenience stores in your area?
    7-Eleven of course, but there are also Aloha Mini Mart, Nom Nom, Fastop, Whalers, ABC Stores, and Nanay Dela’s Lutong Bahai, where you can get a Spam musubi made with jasmine rice.

Friday 5: Great and Small

From here.

  1. What’s your favorite large, furry animal?
    I think polar bears.  I perceive them as being mostly solitary creatures, and what a rough existence they seem to have.  Plus they’re so cute while being so fascinatingly ferocious.
  2. What’s your favorite large sea creature?
    I like walruses and giant squids, although I get the feeling walruses aren’t as charming up close as they are from afar.
  3. What’s your favorite insect?
    I’m fascinated by praying mantises.  They’re so mysterious-looking and so scary, but they’re mostly human-friendly, right?  I mean, there’s no reason not to want them around, I think, and do they eat other bugs?  I used to know a thing or two about mantises but it’s been a long time.  Plus Mantis in Guardians of the Galaxy is such a great character.  A being whose super power is compassion.
  4. What are your favorite names for pets you’ve known?
    A friend’s neighbor had a dog named Budweiser.  That was pretty cute.  One night at Honolulu City Lights, some friends and I met a cat whose name was Manapua, which is only super funny if you’re from Hawaii.  It’s our word for char siu bao, or steamed pork-filled dumplings, and urban legend has it that the manapua wagons, which are like neighborhood food trucks crusing the neighborhoods, make their manapua out of feral cats.  It’s a disgusting legend, but we all grew up hearing it.  I never believed it, of course, and I had many, many manapuas in my day.  Plus the parents of one of my good friends owned a manapua wagon.
  5. Besides unicorns, what are some mythical beasts you wish were real?
    Griffins for sure.  Manticores.