Tuesday, May 31, 2011


New York Yankees v. Seattle Mariners
Sunday, May 29, 2011
Safeco Field
Seattle, WA
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

While it may seem like old hat to some, I have for many years  considered attendance at a Major League baseball game to be an indication of success in one's life.

So, after posting a story about Seattle's memorial to fallen firefighters while enjoying a tall Americano with coconut syrup and munching a multi-grain breakfast roll at the Starbucks shop in Pioneer Square, I packed my laptop, pen, notebook, and other items into my backpack and took off on foot towards Safeco Stadium.  The energy of the burgeoning coffee shop crowd catalyzed  my ingested caffeine and gave my motor a jump start jolt.

Now, mind you, I knew that I was being impulsive, but this was definitely something I was going to do.

Besides, in less than a month, I would be leaving the Emerald City for good and returning to my home in College Place...the equivalent of Odysseus' Ithaca...and I may not have a chance to watch a Mariners' game again for a long, long time.  

More importantly, this was about ticking off one more item in my very own personal BUCKET LIST--you know, the stuff you just gotta do before the FINAL INNING.

The stadium was just a few blocks away, and though I was a little fatigued from having worked the graveyard shift and not sleeping much the day before, the thought of watching the M's possibly sweep the powerhouse Yankees rejuvenated me like a case of Red Bull.

There were several mobile vendors along the approach to Safeco Field.  I spent almost ten dollars for a bag of Cracker Jacks, a bag of peanuts, a huge hot dog, a can of Pepsi, and a bottle of water.  I made sure I hid my soda pop in a secret compartment in my backpack.  The stadium staff will reject beverages, all part of jacking up its commerce inside the stadium.  But part of being a true major league baseball fan is to know the tricks of the trade.  (I'm happy to report that both my can of pop and I got past the "baseball customs" without incident.)

Finding a ticket, even for this huge draw of a game, wasn't as problematic as I had thought.  Just minutes before finding a ticket counter, a woman on the sidewalk I'd asked about tickets told me the game was sold out.  

Imagine my surprise, then, when the ticket agent offered me a reserve seat in the lofty area adjacent to the third base line.  The cost?  $27!  Oh, well, an early Father's Day gift to myself, I thought.

After going through the checkpoint area, walking around a bit, and going on an elevator ride, I finally found section 337, row 12, seat 17.  At first, I was the only one in that particular section.  Gradually, though, the place filled up nicely.

The following are the pictures I took.  I want to interject here that I called my father and my youngest brother and had a very animated conversation with each of them.  WISH YOU WERE HERE was the common theme.

I sat back and took it all in, enjoying seeing some of the more popular major league athletes, three of whom are definite shoo-ins for this year's All Star game--Ichiro Suzuki of the Mariners, and Alex Rodgriguez and Derek Jeter of the Yankees.

The following are the photos I took, along with brief comments.   


 Derek Jeter, #2, addresses the batter's box.
Jason Vargas is on the mound for the Mariners.
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

 To the left, or towards the north, a view of Qwest Stadium--
home of the Seattle Seahawks and Seattle Sounders!
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

 At bat:  #51, Ichiro Suzuki!
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

 A view of right field and the overhead roof.  
If it rains, the roof rolls over the stadium like a giant canopy.
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

 Had to catch that thing Ichiro does with his sleeve at every at-bat.
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

 During a key at-bat, with only one out, Ichiro had the bases loaded.  What a key moment for him to have delivered his first homer of the year!  As it were, he hit into a 6-2-3 double play.  
The crowd raised a huge roar of disappointment.
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

 A view of the huge right centerfield billboard.
(Hawaiian Odysseus)

 Alex Rodgriguez, #13, has a very wide-legged batter's stance.
A former Mariner who abruptly left Seattle and accepted a mega-huge contract with the Texas Rangers, Alex was voluminously booed at each at-bat.
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

Ichiro, seen here doing pre-game stretching in right field, prepares harder and longer than any other athlete.  He truly brings a strong work ethic to the game of baseball.
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

Post-Game Epilogue

Okay, so the M's didn't get the sweep.  In fact, they got shellacked, 7-1, by the Bronx Bombers.  Jason Vargas didn't have his A stuff, and the Yankee bats made him pay dearly for it.  But the Mariners still showed great character in coming from behind and eking out close victories in the first two games, thus winning the three-game series.  At this writing, they are one game over .500, and they may be a game or so out of first place in the American West.  This, from a team that had one of the worst starts of the 2011 baseball season.  If my stats have any bearing, they have won about 10 of their last 13 games.

Go, M's!

And go, Hawaiian Odysseus!  Go to more of these in the near future!

Sunday, May 29, 2011


 The Four Bronze Firefighters
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

Tired and dazed from having worked an overnight shift, riding a bus from Redmond to Seattle for approximately 40 minutes, and then having to abruptly wake up from a catnap that ended up deeper than an untapped artesian well, I found myself aimlessly wandering, looking for a coffee shop where I could get a "Wake Me Up, PLEASE!!!" beverage and maybe draft a post for my blog.  

I came to a picturesque block called Occidental Park, a 0.6 acre of bricked walkway, a stand of trees that dared urban sprawl to cross the proverbial saber-drawn line in the sand,  and a scattering of outdoor art in the Pioneer Square District of Seattle.  In fact, the southern portion--an outdoor mall of sorts--is comprised of several art galleries.

What caught my eye were these four life-sized bronze statues of firemen.  At first, they looked so real because of the dynamic action pose assumed by each entity.  

(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

I was compelled to approach each figure for a closer look.  Now, I'm 5'-11" with a husky build.  The two firefighters that were standing were eye to eye with me and solidly built.  I tapped each of the four, partly in disbelief that they were inanimate objects and partly for a sense of connection to the heroic men they symbolized. 

(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

The artistic attention to detail was awesome.  Using the magic of Google, I learned the artist's name--Hai Ying Wu. Wu, an internationally acclaimed artist from the University of Washington School of Arts, worked with a team of firemen to research, design, and sculpt the bronze figures.  Slabs of granite along the perimeter of these statues depict pieces of a crumbled building.  Wu's words appear on one of the granite blocks:

"Represented realistically yet with exaggerated gestures to emphasize the intensity of the battle in which they are engaged."

(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

Although the memorial was inspired by the heroic passing of four firemen during a warehouse fire in the Chinatown/International District of Seattle in 1995, it is a lasting tribute to the thirty-one firefighters who have fallen in the line of duty since the Seattle Fire Department's genesis in 1889.

(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

So, while I may not have been able to make it to Arlington Cemetery (or any cemetery for that matter, civilian or military) on this date, I nevertheless had the privilege and opportunity to honor men of valor who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty.  

With great deference to and respect for the  patriots of 9/11, it is with great civil and humanitarian pride that I salute our local fallen firefighters. 

Saturday, May 28, 2011


Rose Hill Starbucks
Kirkland, WA
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

See that window to the left in the photo above?  

Follow the T in STARBUCKS straight down, and that's right where I sat  for several hours this afternoon and early evening producing two blog posts--the one just before this entry entitled, MY BIGGEST ROLE TO DATE, and a post for Hawaiian Odysseus 2 about my grand-nephew, Ryder Silas, being THE PERFECT SUCCESSOR (to the E*Trade baby model).

My knock on Starbucks, as compared to Tully's, is that the former doesn't place enough importance on having good, comfy furniture and ample table space for writing, doing homework, engaging in business activities with a plethora of electronic doodads, or holding hands with and gazing into the eyes of a sweetheart.

Well, I must say, I have had to eat my words today.  I really like the spaciousness of this Starbucks.  There is no physical partition between the bar area and the seating area, and yet there is a definitely implied separation between the two areas without giving anyone a claustrophobic or overly segregated feeling.  

There has been a steady flow of customers through this shop for the several hours that I have been here. Even so, no one has had to stand around looking for a place to sit.  There are four large, well-cushioned chairs in the center of the seating area.  Lots of tables border the three walls--the one you can see in the photo above and the two adjacent to that wall.

One of the first anomalies I noticed was that the entire day shift crew, except for the manager, were dudes. When the evening shift arrived, there were two females.  Either way, though, there was a pleasant ambience during the entirety of my stay here.

An outdoor patio was not used at all today, but as the weather gets warmer, I can imagine a host   of people in casual summer clothing will be utilizing that extension.

The majority of customers were Caucasian, with the next largest ethnic group being East Indian. There were a couple of Japanese women.  In the evening, I observed an Afro-American male at the bar.  I was the only Pacific Islander. (I found this interesting in that the area I live in--the Rainier Valley on the southeast side of Seattle--has the opposite makeup.  Of course, I am usually the sole Pacific Islander in that area as well. That's always a lot of fun.)

Kirkland, like the other two major eastside cities, Redmond and Bellevue, is considered to be an affluent entity.  This was reflected in the predominantly middle- to upper middle-class persona of the customers I saw in here today.
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

The parking lot has an abundant amount of well-marked spaces.  I took the above photo in the early afternoon.  As I write this, it is 7:10 PM (Hey, the red hot Mariners game just got under way!  Go, M's!), and the parking lot is more than half full.  

A couple of male students--one with a Russian accent--are sitting directly behind me.  The American is a loudmouth, pressing his point home with his companion about a homework assignment.  Even with his over-the-top volume, there continues to be a pleasant atmosphere in this coffee shop.

I've had a venti Vanilla Soy Latte, followed by a venti Americano (the latter being free because I got it as a substitute for a bold brew, which is normally free because I use a registered gold card).  There is enough caffeine in me to keep me going through the grueling 8-hour baking shift which starts at 10 PM for me.  

My stay here at this particular Starbucks has been an enjoyable one.  I was able to produce three posts, including this piece.  In a few minutes, I will use the restroom and then pack my stuff up in preparation for a light supper at Safeway and a bus ride from Kirkland to Redmond.

(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

All in all, it's been a good, productive day.  I really like this Starbucks shop, and if I were Yelping, I'd give it a five star rating.  In homage to the terminated Gubernator, 

I'll be back!


Dylan Imaikalani and Kalaunuiohua
(Photo courtesy of Erin and Pua)

I have been many things in my young life--

a cattleman...

a comedian...

a seafaring paddleboarder...

a thespian...

an affiliate marketer...

a fisherman...

a Hawaii 5-0 fan...

a trendsetter...

an anthropologist...

a hoopster...

a medical student...

an Olympic swimmer and diver...

a singer...

a dancer...

a personal trainer...

a visionary...

and even a superhero.

Currently, I am a full-time student.
This year, I will have participated in three sports--T-ball, basketball, and football.

I also have a ton of chores to do.

But, folks, my BIGGEST ROLE to date is--


Wednesday, May 25, 2011


(Photo courtesy of Jan M.)

Dedicated with all my love to my sister, Jan, in her time of grieving for an old friend.

There is no justice in this universe if there is any decency or truth to the phrase, dumb animals.

We honor and dignify and respect our human race best if and only if we acknowledge that there is a tremendous amount of mental, emotional, social, and--yes! A resounding YES!--spiritual intelligence inherent to all animals.

There is talk about domesticated animals.  Hmm, I daresay we have that backwards.  It is our animal friends who domesticate us, who tame our savagery as warring homo sapiens and inspire our docility.

Case in point:  NIELE.

Niele was my sister's best feline friend for eleven years.  Jan, in turn, was Niele's best human friend for seventy-seven cat years.  Truth be told, these two knew each other intimately and completely.

Recently, Niele passed into eternal slumber.  Niele is resting peacefully.  

It is those who are left behind, unconsciously yearning for that same kind of rest but daily raging, raging, raging against the dying light, as brother Dylan Thomas so eloquently described this process we call LIVING.

So, while Niele rests, Jan is struggling.  Jan is sleepless in Hilo, refusing with all her being to let go of her forever friend.  Jan is holding onto Niele for dear life, and the irony couldn't be more bittersweet.  

In Seattle, a big brother wrestles with his own angst about wanting to comfort his little sister and, ashamedly and with great frustration, not being able to.  

The metaphorical image of a giant named Sorrow straddling the Pacific--one foot on the Big Island and the other trying to avoid stepping onto the Space Needle--solicits both tears and smiles...not unlike the familiar habit of Hawaiian weather when the sun and the rain simultaneously share the same sky.

Loss.  Absence.  Grief.  Sorrow.  To each of these, there is a season...and every season has its purpose in the process of connecting the elusive dots.  

Jan will turn the corner someday, and the grieving will give way to the celebration of memories. The hurt will transform intself into yet another puka shell in her heart. There is an aching, a physiological void, and the best friend during this transitional pain is time.

Time...time of turning the corner and expecting Niele to be there, RIGHT THERE, in THE FAVORITE SPOT.  

Time...time of finding Niele's hair on one of the sweaters in the closet.

Time...time of viewing old photographs and marveling at how big Niele, the kitten, grew, seemingly overnight..

Time...time of watching the pain of children's and grandchildren's and, yes, I lovingly include him, too, because, just like me, he is a softie at heart in the autumn of our lives--husband Nelson's eyes...someday turn into the eyes of forgetfulness and moving on.

Time...time of looking into the mirror and someday finding, dear sister Jan, that your eyes have that same forgetful and moving on look.

And, for your and Niele's sake, it's okay.  It is perfectly okay.  It is as it should be.

The greatest blessing in all of this is that we who grieve know without a doubt that we love and respect our animal friends.  We realize that there is a cosmic connection between all living things and that we must not ever take that connection for granted.  

Sister Jan, I love you.  God bless you and all your loved ones.  I pray for your broken heart to heal and grow even stronger for having lived with and loved



Tully's at the Chinatown/International District
(Hawaiian Odysseus photo)

An overcast day in Seattle, an anomaly for this late in the calendar in past years but a common occurrence this year.  

I seek comfort from the ashen morning sky in the familiar and homey ambience of Tully's at 625 5th Avenue S. in the Chinatown/International District.  

Starbucks may be the reigning coffee champ, but Tully's--a very close second, in my opinion--appeals to me with its willingness to invest in very comfortable and utilitarian chairs and tables.  Forget the tiny circular tables that leave no room for the laptop to rest easily for fear of pushing the coffee cup off of the table...or, worse yet, spilling the java onto the electronic device, thus ensuring the early demise of both.  Tully's may very well replace the coffee, but the burial of the laptop is imminent at dusk.

After my graveyard shift at the bagel shop, I caught the Sound Transit 545 bus from Redmond at 6:26 AM across the street from my favorite all-stop grocery/department store, Fred Meyer, and--almost an hour later--arrived at a bus stop on the northeast corner of the block where this Tully's takes up residence on the southeast corner.  Across the street--due east--is the world-acclaimed Uwajimaya store where I shop for Asian/Pacific Islander items I can't find anywhere else in this city as well as enjoy an occasional local boy's meal.  After finishing this post, in fact, I plan to go over to Uwajimaya and purchase my favorite pastry as of late, SWEET RED BEAN BUN, only $1.35 per generous-sized piece, at the YUMMY HOUSE BAKERY.

For now, I am enjoying my window seat at Tully's, nursing a tall cup of their morning brew.  My earlier caffeinated drink had been the Americano with coconut syrup.  As long as a customer remains in the shop, subsequent drinks are free.  FREE is a decent four letter word.  I like FREE.

I AM free.  Free to make decisions like coming here this morning to work on my eBay marketing and accounting.  I thankfully recorded five more sales of fishing hooks.  

You've been with me long enough, dear reader, to know that the above link was coming as soon as I mentioned fishing hooks.

That's how I ride.

After all, at almost 59 years of age, and after working almost five years at the bagel shop in the Microsoft capital of the world, Redmond, Washington, I am transitioning back home to Walla Walla County next month.  A lot of changes and adjustments are in store for me, not the least of which is an earnest attempt to re-create myself.  Much of that will be critically riding on two things, each of which I passionately invest a great deal of time and energy in--my business on eBay and my writing.

Soon, very soon, so soon that I can taste the delicious liberation of it, I will no longer have to commute almost four hours each day and tear my body up in the process of baking 10,000 bagels each night and living/sleeping a vampire's hours.  

Soon, very soon, so soon that I can taste the delicious involvement of it, I will be able to pursue my self-imposed writing assignments and explore entrepreneurial interests for longer periods each day. This will be crucial to my goal of developing a viable source of income that approaches and, hopefully, gradually surpasses what I earned as a bagel baker.

Right here, at this very moment, I am thinking and declaring powerful affirmations for my Odyssean success.  

Indeed, while enjoying valuable alone time at one of my favorite coffee shops, Tully's, at the Chinatown/International District, I celebrate my upcoming return home to my Ithaca (College Place) and my Queen Penelope (Rita).

Monday, May 23, 2011


Kalaunuiohua, Kaua, and Ryder
(Photo courtesy of Ryan)

Kaua:  Cuzzes, you evah get da kine feeling like we bin heah befo?

Ryder:  Wat you talking about, Kalau?

Kalau:  Yeah, Cuz...what Cuz said!

Kaua:  No, fo real!

Ryder:  Did Unko Charlie geev you da kine funny mushroom fo lunch today?

Kalau:  Yeah, Cuz...what Cuz said!

Kaua:  No-no-no-no-no!  I serious, fellahs!  Come on! You guys musta had dat feeling...you know, da kine where you go WHOA, I BIN HEAH BEFO!

Kalau:  Yeah, I get dat feeling 4 times a day now...I one beeg boy dese days, and I eat mo' so I stay regulah!  On schedule like one Amtrak train! Plus, da poi ack like one laxative!

(Ryder and Kalau bust out laughing.  Kaua pretends he's annoyed but gets caught up in the moment and starts chuckling.  This only causes Ryder and Kalau to bellow uncontrollably in laughter, and the three cousins fall off the sofa, still laughing as they dogpile each other.  Suddenly, with a start, Kaua sits up on the living room floor.)

Kaua:  I'm serious as a haht attack.  Guys, we bin heah befo! And I tink I know wheah.  I just don't know when. It was a long time ago.

Ryder:  Wow, Cuz!  Da look in yo eyes...giving me chicken skin!

Kalau:  Yeah, Cuz...what Cuz said!

Kaua:  Okay, tell you what!  You guys game fo try someting new?

Ryder:  Sure, Cuz!  Count me in!

Kalau:  Yeah, me, too!

Kaua:  Okay, good.  Let's hold hands.  Good!  Now, let's close our eyes.  Both eyes, Kalau!  Good!  Now, make yo brain go empty.

Ryder:  Dats easy fo me!

Kalau:  Me, too! 

Kaua:  Okay, our minds stay empty.  We wait for a few minutes now...

(The parents, grandparents, and family matriarch--G-GMA, or great-grandmother--enter the living room and find the three infants fast asleep with big smiles on their faces.)

G-GMA:  Chee!  Look how cute, yeah?  I wondah what they dreaming about?

The Three Cousins--
Kalaunuiohua, Kaua, and Ryder
In the days of yore when the South Pacific region of Atlantis became Polynesia
(Photo courtesy of Ryan)

Ryder:  Yeeeeehaaaaaa!

Kalau:  Wow, Cuz, you were right!  

Kaua:  Yep!  I just knew it!  Da tree of us bin togetha for a long, long time!

HEY!  Who just nipped my tail!  KALAU!  RYDER!  Wait till I catch you guys!  

Saturday, May 21, 2011


Tako Drying in the Sun
(Photo courtesy of Silas Kaumakahia Aqui)

One of my most popular posts to date addresses the God-given penchant of my brother, Charlie, for capturing octopus (TAKO in Japanese; HE'E in Hawaiian).

(Click on this link or on the right margin reference to this particular post:  

Weather patterns all over the world have been helter skelter, and Hawaii has definitely been no exception.  But now that the glorious sun has shown its face more consistently over The Garden Isle, Charlie put his makeshift drying kit together and set it outside in the yard.  Tentacled legs and mantle pieces are evenly placed between two screens with boarded foundations.  The rest is up to the sun.

The dried octopus, like its beef or turkey counterparts, is an excellent snack or PUPU (Hawaiian for hors d'oeuvre).  It is an excellent source of protein and a catalyst for the saliva glands.  

If the weather is mellow and the ocean action off the southeast shore of Kauai remains calm tomorrow, Charlie will join my brother, Glenn, and Glenn's son, Jared, on a deep sea fishing expedition.  They will be fishing for AKU (bonito), PAPIO and ULUA (respectively, juvenile and mature trevally or jackfish), and other deep sea fish.

Next month, my brothers and I, along with our sister and her family and relatives will have a much  anticipated reunion with our father who lives on the east coast.

This will be a wonderful occasion for everyone, but it will be especially huge for my dad and me because we haven't seen each other for thirty-three years!

Hopefully, the brothers will be blessed with an abundant catch.  Dried aku is quite a delicacy. Together, with the dried tako and other Hawaiian delights, and always accompanied by poi, we'll have a grand time catching up on good times and sharing sweet memories.

Vintage Hawaiian--life at its best!

Friday, May 20, 2011


King Louis XCIII of Nottingham
Columbia City Link Light Rail Station

A pride of lions faithfully and diligently watches over Columbia City, a neighborhood of southeast Seattle.

Each leonine king is a statuesque representation of the specific artistic personality and influence of the continent it hails from--Africa, Asia, or Europe.  Apropos of the disparity in the lions' geographical points of origin, the human population of Columbia City, as is the case with most of Seattle's Rainier Valley, is also comprised of a wide spectrum of races, creeds, and cultures.  

Undoubtedly, the fact that the Royal Guard can live peaceably with each other and share the social and cultural benefits of a relatively small global village speaks volumes to their homo sapien neighbors.

Existing documents state that there are ten of these lions holding staunch vigil at the Sound Transit Link Light Rail Station.  This blogger unfortunately was so petrified with fear that there was only enough nerve to photograph eight of these royal bastions.  Either that, or as the story was later relayed to the crowd at the local Starbucks, two of the lions were on hiatus in the Serengeti.  Coffee shops--like barbershops and pubs--are the birthplaces of urban myths.

Without further ado, here are the other seven lions, each followed by a Columbia City fact of interest.

King Antoine "Tony Da Toes"  Mozarelli

King Tony's fact:  Columbia City was, of course, named after Christopher Columbus.  In addition, three of its neighborhood streets are named after famous explorers:  Hudson Street after Henry Hudson; Americus Street after Amerigo Vespucci; and Ferdinand Street after Ferdinand Magellan.
King "On the Ball" Pol Paksukcharem

King Pol's fact:  True to its mission of making new friends and welcoming new people into the neighborhood, Columbia City rolls out the red carpet with its Wednesday Farmer's Market in the months of May through October.

King Frederick "Freddy the Reddy" Jackson

King Freddy's fact:  Once a dense evergreen forest, the Rainier Valley experienced a major overhaul with the arrival of the Rainier Valley Electric Railway from Seattle in 1891.  Business tycoon C. D. Hillman used the railroad to promote the sale of Columbia City lots.  The building of a lumber mill expedited the early urban sprawl.  

 King Michael "Mickey" O'Rourke of Cork

King Mickey's fact:  Columbia City prospered from the railroad and logging industries.  Most of the prosperity took place during the early 1900's, and it was during this era that much of Columbia City's commercial district took shape.

King Percival "Percy, Have Mercy!" Fauntleroy

King Percy's fact:  There was actually a time when Columbia City aspired to be a seaport. These ambitions were put to rest with the completion of the Lake Washington Ship Canal in 1917.  This resulted in a lowering of Lake Washington by nine feet and a drying up of Wetmore Slough.  The former slough was used as a dump and is now known as Genesee Park.   

King Ichiro "Ichi Michi" Michioka

King Ichiro's fact:  The late 70's witnessed the emergence of boot-strap community activism in Columbia City.  The Columbia City Development Association (CCDA) led the effort for Landmark designation and left a legacy of streetscape improvements that the community still enjoys.  The Southeast Effective Development (SEED) was created by a group of business owners, residents, and community activists.  SEED, a non-profit corporation, had major investments in the Rainier Valley Cultural Center, the Columbia Hotel, and the Columbia City Gallery building.  

King Lee Park "I Smell Like Kim Chee!" Moon

King Lee's fact:  The Columbia City Revitalization Committee (CCRC) was founded in 1995 as a grassroots community organization whose goal was a strong neighborhood and business core. Generating an impetus for change through annual town meetings, the CCRC created two of Columbia City's defining institutions--BeatWalk and the Farmers Market.  

Thanks to the Columbia City lions, we've been able to learn a few facts about the history and development of this burgeoning community.  While Columbia City has its own unique challenges, it comes closest among Pacific Northwest communities to not only promoting but, more importantly, exemplifying the notion of a truly universal village--a place where divers cultures can coexist and interact peaceably for the long term.  Without a doubt, that kind of implicit grassroots cooperation would enhance the quality, growth, and development of any community.


Tuesday, May 17, 2011


KaiMalia Lin
(Photo courtesy of Glenn and Linda)

"The fish and I were both stunned and disbelieving to find ourselves connected by a line."    --William Humphrey in "The Armchair Angler"

I am blessed with family members who are extraordinary in their humble origins and simple lifestyles. Readers of my two blogs are familiar with Braddah Charlie, the local boy octopus hunter (http://hawaiianodysseus.blogspot.com/2010/11/my-brother-charlie-excellent-octopus.html), fisherman (http://hawaiianodysseus.blogspot.com/2011/04/kanaka-salute-to-real-heroes-of-kauai.html), and master craftsman (http://hawaiianodysseus.blogspot.com/2011/05/braddah-charlies-portable-fish-cleaning.html).

Now I'd like you to meet my Braddah Glenn Kuhina.  

Recently, Glenn, his lovely wife, Linda, and their son, Jared, purchased a fishing boat.  Naming it KaiMalia Lin (see Linda's Facebook comment below regarding the origin of the name), the family looked forward to great adventures with deep sea fishing and ocean cruising someday.  They did some work on it, the last project involving intense challenges with the engine.  The family project--always a great vehicle for supergluing those precious familial ties.  One of the greatest compliments I could ever pay each of my three younger brothers--in spite of my neglect in telling them enough--is a mention of just how very much they've taught and mentored me, the oldest brother, over the years.

I've been metaphorically hurdling the Pacific Ocean with the passionate posting on this blog and hawaiianodysseus2.blogspot.com for the past five months--one figurative foot on Kauai and the other here in Seattle.  The experience has enriched my awareness of and immense gratitude for my family of origin.

So when I was able to view the latest images that Linda had posted to Facebook, I was really jazzed and happy for my brother, Glenn, and his family.

Glenn had been on his own personal odyssey of self-discovery, and so--just as he and all of my family have done for me over the past four decades--I was a staunch and faithful prayer warrior, supportive friend, and always, always, always a nostalgic big brother.  The split screen in my Fall Season mind found me "watching movies"  in both the present reality AND the small kid times of yesteryear.

This latest chapter--DAS BOOT, Hawaiian style--instigated primal stirrings within me.  Our father had been a very good fisherman--adept in spearfishing, fish and lobster net setting, Hawaiian throw net, surf fishing, fish trap setting, and reef torching.  But our family of origin never had the resources with which to obtain a fishing boat.

So it is very good as well as motivating to see Braddah Glenn and his family collaborate on the purchase, usage of, and dedication to this recreational as well as pragmatic pastime.  If it is the natural inclination of each generation to transcend its predecessor, then the involvement with this gorgeous seafaring boat is a quantum leap for my brother and his loved ones.

At this juncture, I want to share with you a Facebook exchange I had with Glenn's wife regarding the name of the boat.

My nephew, Jared, in the Captain's Seat
(Photo courtesy of Glenn and Linda)
Me:  Glenn and Linda, what's the story behind the name of the boat?  It's a beauty, by the way! Congratulations!  I know you guys are gonna put it to good use--both fishing and sailing!

Linda:  Hi, Joe - when Glenn was thinking of what to name the boat, he had already thought of naming it EmmaAmme (in honor of the twins)...I reminded him that our river boat is already named after the grandchildren; so he gave me the task of naming the boat...there are actually three names - Kai, (for Jared's girlfriend, Kainoa, and because Jared is a part owner); Malia (Jennifer's middle name); and Lin (after me, and since I'M the REAL captain! haha)

KaiMalia Lin, side view
(Photo courtesy of Glenn and Linda)

So, you may be wondering, did they ever take the boat out to go fishing?

I'm going to let each of the following pictures speak a thousand words plus for you.

Cast of KaiMalia Lin--Jared, Glenn, and Riley
With Great Supporting Actors--30-lb Mahimahi,  Ulua, and 10 Aku

God blessed these men on the maiden voyage with an abundant catch.  I am very happy for their success on this, the very first fishing trip aboard the KaiMalia Lin!

The Proud Skipper with His Prize Catch
(Photo courtesy of Glenn and Linda)

Naturally, each crew member gets to pose with the monster fish of the day...first up, Jared!

Like Father, Like Son
(Photo courtesy of Glenn and Linda)

Brother Riley, below, is a good family friend.  You know he'll want a slab of this magnificent and delicious fish!

  Calabash Cousin and Mahimahi Wrangler, Riley
(Photo courtesy of Glenn and Linda)

Congratulations to Braddah Glenn and his beautiful family for their successful maiden fishing trip!  May God bless you with many more abundant catches and--in the process--keep your family safe, happy, and forever intact!  It has been an  honor for me to have chronicled in word and shared images this memorable family venture!