It's time for the ol' lavahead to hele on yet again. Will he
find a new ISP? Will he fix the six-four? Will he ever get a job? Sheesh!
Life of a Humuhumunukunuku'apua'a
fish in a pretty big pond ... that's the ol' lavahead! I'm not alone, though.
There are other small wannabe fish around, like the Chimptm,
to make pond life more difficult than it needs to be. My return to Hawai'i
will only reveal the tip of a new iceberg of challenges and you, my virtual
homeys, will be with me in spirit. Come now ... let us swim around the
pond for a bit, shall we?
Friday February 29, 1997
My cold has not gotten any better. I felt sluggish
all day. Baby went down to the clubhouse alone last night to watch Star
Trek: DSN. The Chimptm never made an
appearance, which supports my idea that he has a problem with the ol' lavahead.
Baby and I had lunch at Burger King (Whoppers, our way!). After lunch,
she had to drive to work in Sandy again. I continued the final phases of
the LoserNet facelift. The rest of the project will remain incomplete,
at least until I have a better idea concerning the disposition of LoserNet.
Moms forwarded a whole mess of slam letters. Most notable was the manuscript
rejection from Simon & Schuster. Junk stuff. I can't say that
I was in better spirits after reading my slam letters.
Saturday March 1, 1997
I have been thinking and rethinking the ISP situation.
I had thought about letting LoserNet fade away. Readership is at an all
time low. However, LoserNet and the Web have been instrumental in all facets
of my life. I have left Convalescent City. I have met new people. I have
done new things. And, I have moved back to Hawai'i (sort of). Would I have
not done this anyway? I don't think so. I probably would have remained
in Convalescent City indefinitely and telling everyone that I am planning
to move back to Hawai'i ad nauseam. Be it as it may, I will sell
my six-four to support LoserNet, if necessary. I can always get another
six-four, but can I get another life? Sheesh!
I spent almost all day working on completely revamping
the LoserNet Supersite. I never made it down to the clubhouse for Fodgers
and doughnuts. Sheesh! Now you see how committed I am to LoserNet! I did
take a break and go to the gym with baby, but my mind was still on LoserNet.
Anyway, let me know what you think about the new look and the navigational aids.
Sunday March 2
I did not make it to Fodgers and doughnuts until
late. Baby was not feeling very well, having caught my cold. She worked
on her Web journal, but she got a little sidetracked with Windows Solitaire.
After that, we went to the Anzen market to buy some Lau Lau, but there
was none in stock. Sadly, we had to settle for Chinese take-out from the
Safeway deli. The highlight of the day was the reading of the competitor's
journal. The competitor's ISP has apparently gone kaput, and so the journal
was delivered by e-mail. It was most fortunate for us that baby was on
the competitor's mail list. I find it interesting that the competitor and
I have been living parallel lives. I look upon the ISP fiasco as an omen
of what is to come for me.
Monday March 3
I have a suspicion that there is a virus resident
on my computer. I'm not sure whether there is one or not because I am using
four-year-old anti-virus software. I can't afford to update it. I tried
to run the Eicar test file. My anti-virus program didn't even catch it.
Perhaps, all of this is unfounded. Fear, after all, is what sells so many
products or services (like insurance and anti-virus). I also put the finishing
touches on the jump page for these journals, and I inserted the image designed
by Adam (email@example.com) at the top. Thanks Adam!
I forgot to mention that The Bull wanted me to
apply for a position with the FBI along with him. Can you imagine The Bull
and I doing a comical rendition of The X-Files? Baby and I went to the
gym early. I did a mediocre workout. We made the usual shopping rounds
after that. I received more slam letters today. One was from Wendy's, so
you know I won't be eating there anytime soon. Big John also wrote. The
latest news from Convalescent City was that the city rejected a developer's
bid to put up a new shopping complex. The developer has now threatened
to put a large hog farm in its place. Sheesh! Baby and I had another disagreement
which finally made me realize that I possess less tolerance than I claim
to have. People seem to get on my nerves. I get on my own nerves, for that
matter. Sometimes it just amazes me to see how well I've even fooled myself
into believing that I have changed.
Tuesday March 4
I have been using Netscape Mail somewhat successfully
for a few days. However, I was not able to access my mail today. Apparently,
the IBM AIX cluster is being replaced by HP equipment. Hence, the mail
system is being migrated to a new server. I sent out a bunch of e-mail
last week to several virtual homeys, but I think all was lost in the process.
The e-mail may eventually get out of the loop, but who knows when.
I spent the day packing up my stuff and recycling
the non-essentials. Baby had to drive out to work in Sandy despite having
a bad cold. She returned late in the afternoon. She was not feeling much
better. I cooked some Curry Stew (a popular plate lunch entrée in
Hawai'i) for dinner. I have been cooking quite a bit lately, something
I haven't done in a long time. As you know, my specialty has been Bush's
baked beans (straight from the can) for many years. Sheesh!
Wednesday March 5
I finally configured Netscape Mail to run properly,
although there have been a lot of problems on the AIX cluster. Of course,
none of this does me any good. Next week, I'll be back in Hawai'i. Moms
does not even have touch-tone service. Life just can't get much better
than this. You know, life in Hawai'i is somewhat backwards. I'm not talking
little grass shacks, mind you. Somehow, being stuck out in the middle of
the Pacific makes a difference. My 14.4kbps modem would probably be considered
cutting-edge technology over there! Sheesh!
Baby had to visit a client today. She was supposed
to drive out to Sandy again, but she was not feeling very good. We sat
and drank hot tea for most of the afternoon. I made a cup of extremely hot
tea. Can you guess what happened next? Yep, I spilled it in my lap as I
rested the cup on my leg. I jumped up. Baby's daughter asked, "Are you
all right? I wouldn't like it if I spilled a ton of hot water on my crotch."
Baby's cold was getting worse, so she took a nap. Baby's daughter and I
walked to the 7-11 to buy some medication and some candy bars. When we
returned, I gave baby the medication and let her rest. Then, baby's daughter
and I went down to the clubhouse to watch yet another hilarious episode
of The Tick. Later, I cooked up some dinner. Baby felt better, so
I knew that the medication was helping.
Thursday March 6
Well, I have yet to do anything about the ISP situation.
Some days I feel as though LoserNet should be maintained at any cost because
it is a showcase for my mediocre talents. On other days, I wonder what
it is all worth. Finally, many thanks to Joe (firstname.lastname@example.org),
Jeff (email@example.com), and Greg (Gregory.W.Martino@widener.edu)
for writing in! Also, thanks to Annabelle (Annabelle.Parker@pjmi.knaw.nl)
for the virtual Hawai'ian postcard!
Whoppers, our way! That's what baby and I had
for lunch, although we were not feeling too well. Somehow a delicious Whopper
can magically change things! Baby had to drive out to work in Sandy. The
rains have started up again, and baby has been apprehensive about driving
anywhere. She has to get as much done this week because her mom is arriving
on Saturday, and will be staying for a week. After that, baby will have
about four days to prepare for her trip to Hawai'i. The Bull (EquityBull@aol.com)
e-mailed me with the latest news from Convalescent City. He is still with
his babe, Laura, although he has been plagued by a bevy of babes who want
to steal him away including Tam! The Bull also mentioned that he has electronically
corresponded with one of my virtual homeys. Former Dream Teamer, Eric,
has been in court testifying about what happened to him the night he was
brutally battered and his babe was kidnapped by two punks. The Bull may
fly to Hawai'i with Eric in May for a vacation. Could the Dream Team be
making a comeback? And, the Cardinal apparently will be flying to Las Vegas
this weekend. He wants the whole gang to join him, including the ol' lavahead.
Highly unfortunate as it may be, I won't be able to make it. At least the
competitor e-mailed baby to announce a new URL. Sheesh!
Friday March 7
My beloved cell phone has not rung since my homey
John called. Moms forwarded more mail, but I was spared any slam letters
this time around. I sent off a few résumés by e-mail today.
I will also be reading about the FAX capability in my computer. When I
get home, the first thing I'm going to do is ask moms to let me request
touch-tone service. Okay, it is time for today's Pidgin English
lesson. The word of the day is beef. We're not talking about all-beef
patties such as one finds in a Whopper. The definition is "an altercation."
Here's an example of its usage ... say that someone (like the Chimptm)
has attempted to humiliate you in front of your babe. Just yell out, "Eh,
you like beef?" Thanks to local boy, JonnyX (firstname.lastname@example.org),
for suggesting the word of the day!
I bought a new torque wench and the gasket set
for my six-four. I didn't realize that the box for the gasket set was larger
than my suitcase, so I will have to carry it on the plane. All this to
save two dollars! Sheesh! I also received e-mail (from a person who shall
remain nameless) which had an 800K Word file attached to it. Can you guess
what happened next? In true brain donor fashion, I tried to open the file.
It froze Word immediately, even with ScanProt. Well, I probably have a
virus on my computer now for sure. I should have seen it coming, especially
since I was just discussing computer viruses the other day. Baby was still
under the weather. She bought some generic NyQuil and took a dose before
dinner. That put her out of commission for the rest of the evening. I kept
myself occupied by playing with my virus-infested computer. The highlight
of the day was a call from GTE Mobilnet. My account will be credited for
that call from some GTE salesman back in December.
Saturday March 8
I haven't given much thought to my departure on
Monday. I have been too preoccupied with what I will do once I get to Hawai'i.
I had put everything on hold when I came back and now, as the old saying
goes, it's time to pay the piper. The job situation will be the most perturbing
aspect of my return home. I may put my résumé on-line and
see what the readership-at-large thinks. I am sure that once everyone peruses
the pathetic document, it will be fairly obvious why my beloved cell phone
hasn't rung. My bro may also be laid off this month, so both of us may
end up working at Pizza Hut. Sheesh!
Fodgers, but plenty of doughnuts! I decided to make a pot of Trader Joe's
Sumatra Lintong instead of choking down robusta juice. Baby's daughter
and I were at the clubhouse early for doughnuts. Unfortunately for me,
they were the ones with the crusty wax-like coconut coating. Baby's daughter,
however, chowed them down. The Chimptm
was in the office talking to the office babes. I noticed that he had his
arm in a sling, and I could hear him yapping about how his pain killers
weren't working. Could it be that someone broke his arm? Maybe he sampled
the bittersweet taste of justice, as The Tick would say. By the
way, did you happen to see the episode with the Deadly Bulb? Was that a
riot, or what? And, how about Speak (The Tick's dog/world's largest
rodent)? We all drove out to the airport to pick up baby's mom. We came
back here for a bit. Then, we went to Egghead Software. I bet baby's mom
really enjoyed that, eh? I checked out the anti-virus software, while baby
and her mom played Windows Solitaire. Baby's daughter played Monster
Truck Madness. Sheesh! Speaking of viruses, I found out that the Word
file that was e-mailed to me did not contain a virus. Rather, it had a
huge image file embedded in it.
Sunday March 9
We ate dinner at the Brasserie Montmartre in downtown
Portland. I had the delicious Oregon Snapper entrée. After dinner,
we stopped off at Trader Joe's to pick up some breakfast stuff. Well, I
have one full day left here before I return to Hawai'i. My apprehensions
are beginning to build. It's not that I don't want to return to Hawai'i.
I really like it there. I think a lot of it has to do with baby. We have
spent so much time together that I'm not sure whether we know how to spend
time apart. I know that we have traits that can grate on each other's nerves,
too. Which brings me to this ... I have observed that baby is very similar
to her mom. Many of their behavior patterns are similar. Even some of their
hand gestures are identical. That makes me wonder about how many behavior
patterns I have picked up from my own parents. I don't think that I have
but, perhaps when baby visits, she will observe otherwise.
My last full day in Oregon! Baby's daughter and
I went down to the clubhouse. I took a big cup of Sumatra. Naturally, we
consumed all of the doughnuts. The Chimptm
was in the office talking to one of the office babes. He was there all
morning, which made me suspect that he was putting the make on her. What
a maroon! We went to CompUSA after lunch. As a computer nerd, I just can't
get enough of that place. Kevin (email@example.com) called from
Seattle and both baby and I chatted with him. He could barely contain his
excitement about his Spring vacation plans. As you can probably guess,
he will be flying to the East Coast to meet another LoserNet reader. He
has exchanged several hundred e-mails with her and has probably helped
subsidize part of the fiber optic phone lines, too. He also wanted to bid
farewell to the ol' lavahead. Minutes later, Annie called to say good-bye
to the ol' lavahead. I was so surprised that I was speechless. She, too,
was excited about her Spring vacation plans. Ooops! Did I spill the beans?
Well, baby and I are very happy for the two of them and their new friendship.
We hope that their dreams become a reality. While Kevin and Annie are meeting
for the first time, baby will be visiting the ol' lavahead and his family
in Hawai'i. Kevin and baby will be exchanging pictures from their respective
vacations when they meet in SeaTac at the end of the month. Baby will be
making a stopover there on her way to Portland. I spent the rest of the
evening packing. We have to leave very early in the morning because my
flight leaves at 9am. And so, the adventure begins again!
Monday March 10
There is still much uncertainty about LoserNet's
future. I will try my best to keep it running. I will maintain the journal
on the prototype site, which resides on my beloved computer. When and if
I get a chance, I will upload the journal. Hopefully, it won't be too long.
I have come value all of my virtual and real homeys. Speaking of homeys,
many thanks to Dan (firstname.lastname@example.org) for suggesting an
on-line Pidgin-English Dictionary! Thanks to Paul (e-mail withheld)
who wrote, "I really enjoy reading LoserNet because you make the reader
care about what happens to the cast. I'm sure there are thousands of other
readers who feel the same way, and want to keep reading LoserNet. I wish
you good luck on your move back to Hawai'i. I hope you find an employer
who appreciates you skills, and that you and baby find happiness in Paradise."
Thanks to Greg (Gregory.W.Martino@widener.edu) who wrote, "Good
luck with your move. By the way, I am teaching my daughter a little pidgin,
you should hear her say, 'Eh, brah, you no try gimme stink eye, eh?'" Many
thanks to all of you who read LoserNet! Well, hey! Don't go anywhere! We're
not gone yet! Sheesh, Itlan!
Baby and I were up early. We were both very tired
because our colds were still lingering on. We had an early start to the
airport. I had plenty of time to check in, and baby had enough time to
park her car and meet me in the terminal. I bent the antenna on my beloved
cell phone while I was carrying my luggage. What a loser! We had coffee
at the Coffee People concession. As baby would say, it was an extremely
adult coffee. People seem to like their coffee very strong up here in the
Northwest. We walked at a leisurely pace to the gate. I was the last person
to board the plane. Baby and I said our good-byes. Fortunately, it wasn't
a tearful one. After all, baby will be meeting me in Hawai'i in just ten
days! I neglected to mention that I called home Saturday. I made arrangements
with my sister-in-law to pick me up at the airport. Moms broke more bad
news to me. The final manuscript submission was returned, so it appears
that I will remain an unpublished nobody. Oh well. The flight was enjoyable.
I had the whole row of seats to myself. There were a bunch of goofballs
sitting behind me. The drunker they got, the more they bumped into my seat.
Had I been on the edge, I would have opened up enrollment for Lou's School
Tuesday March 11
I got lost in the airport while looking for the
baggage claim area. The layout had changed. I finally asked for some help.
My sister-in-law called me on my cell phone while I was on the Wiki-Wiki
Shuttle to the terminal I should have been in. She, too, was lost. She
finally found me after I gave her approximate coordinates. I was finally
on my way home! As I looked around, I could see that Honolulu was far from
Paradise. It is an overcrowded city, with very few jobs. I was happy to
see moms. I opened my mail to confirm the rejection by Contemporary Books.
I also had some employment slam letters to further increase my fragile
mental state. I then assessed my six-four. Upon opening the hood, I realized
that I had forgotten that I needed to remove the power steering pump (and
everything else) in order to remove the manifolds. Further, the exhaust
manifold has no gasket. I then discovered that some of the bolts were loose.
Tomorrow, I will see if tightening them will solve the problem. If not,
I will be spending two days putting a new gasket in.
Baby gave me a nice photo of herself. I bought
a frame for it and put it on my dresser. I can't help but think back
and realize that LoserNet was the reason that I met baby. Lord knows what
would have happened if I had never lived below Loser, eh? Perhaps that
is another reason that I have a strong commitment to LoserNet. In my phone
conversation with Kevin last night, he expressed how much he thought that
baby and I made a good couple. Perhaps he was right. I found that I really
began to miss her during the flight home. I wished I planned my trip such
that we flew back to Hawai'i together. Of course, I don't think that baby
would enjoy watching me fix my six-four during her vacation. Sheesh! I
wonder what the future has in store for us. Right now, I feel as though
I live simultaneously in two different worlds. Although I am broke, I have
been fortunate to have had the ability to commute between the mainland
and Hawai'i. I have been blessed with a good life, in spite of myself.
Finally, thanks to Casey (email@example.com) who wrote, "I have been
visiting LoserNet for a few months now and find myself able to relate -
perhaps, a bit too closely - to your observations and predicaments ...
You have a loyal readership in Michigan!"
I can't say that baby will be too impressed with
Hawai'i. I made it out to be like the Blue Lagoon, but it is more
like Devil's Island. Of course, Paradise is anywhere you wish to make it
so. Yes, make it so, Number One. Okay, I know I'm not Jean-Luc Picard.
I called baby late yesterday afternoon. She didn't seem too thrilled to
hear from me so I made the call brief. The rains started late last night,
and it was still pouring this morning. Nonetheless, I worked on my six-four.
I decided to give Tom's suggestion a try and merely tighten down all the
bolts to the manifolds. I followed the tightening sequence and torqued
them down. My six-four seemed to run fine when I started it up. I reset
the mixture and idle adjustments on the carb. It took a total of three
hours. I took it for a short drive and everything seemed fine. It looks
like I bought the gaskets and the new torque wrench for nothing.
Wednesday March 12
I called GTE to find out about adding touch-tone
service (for a nominal fee, of course). I put forth the idea to the family
collective, but no one seemed too excited. I then tried to call around
to see if I could get a cable to connect my PCMCIA modem to my beloved
cell phone. No dice. I actually thought I was going to snap right then
and there. Fortunately, baby called a few minutes later, much to my surprise.
I was very happy to hear from her. We are both still suffering from the
same cold or flu that I got while I was in Cali. Baby seemed in better
spirits. I also broke out my broken French Press and made a pot of coffee.
Brings back old memories, doesn't it?
I have done nothing about the job situation since
arriving in Hawai'i. I continued working on my six-four. I fixed a variety
of small problems. I want to get it running real good because I am still
debating with myself on whether to sell it. I put the recycling and the
stuff for Goodwill in my six-four and dropped all of it off. I then drove
through town, Waikiki, and took the long way home past Sandy Beach. My
six-four ran almost perfectly. The carb still needs to be tweaked. Later,
I would like to do a reverse flush of the radiator, but that project is
a bit more involved. The pathetic part is that the transmission fluid also
runs through the radiator. So, I broke out the K-Mart all-in-one entertainment
center. Remember that I bought it just for Loser? I put Smooth-FM on while
I cleaned up my K-Mart since it has been sitting in its box now for a year.
I will be putting it up for sale. I may even unbox my six-five tomorrow.
I want to put it back together soon, and then I'll see if my bro will let
baby borrow his mountain bike. Baby and I can cruise around da 'hood. After
baby leaves, I will probably sell my six-five. What I really want to do
is sell everything so I can scrape up enough dough to visit baby again
Thursday March 13
put a few more things together to take to Goodwill. One of those items
was my broken French Press. I also put Mr. Potato Head in with the other
donations, but I thought I should show him to moms first. Moms talked me
out of giving him away, so Mr. Potato Head stays! Sheesh! I dropped the
rest of the stuff off at Goodwill, on my way to Aiea. I decided that I
would put everything (except my six-four) in the classified shopper. Mind
you, I had removed the cheesy plastic windows (held together by "duck"
tape) from my six-four on Monday. Just as I reached Pearl City, it started
pouring. It was raining so hard that the roads were flooding before my
eyes. Some clown next to me drove through what seemed like a large lake
in the middle of his lane. Water streamed in all directions. A huge wave
washed against the driver's side of my six-four. Needless to say, I was
drenched when I finally arrived at my destination. The babe who helped
me out asked, "Eh, da kine weather ugly outside, or what?" When
I returned home, I had lunch with moms. Moms helped me locate my automotive
diagnostic analyzer (actually, it is just a cheap dwell/tachometer) that
my bro had stored in one of his boxes. I hooked it up to my six-four and
attempted to make adjustments to the carb. My six-four was idling very
badly. I knew that it still had a vacuum leak. I decided to call it a day
on that project. I never got around to unboxing my six-five. Now that it
is up for sale, I may just leave it boxed up.
Friday March 14
When my bro returned, he asked if I wanted to go
with him to Kane'ohe. He wanted to go shopping for a few work supplies.
He also had to pick up a pizza he bought from his buddy for a charitable
donation. I was about to leave for the GTE Phone Mart to take care of the
touch-tone dilemma, but I decided to go with the bro. When we arrived at
his buddy's place, no one was home. We returned home in time for dinner.
After dinner, my bro wanted to drive back to Kane'ohe to pick up his pizza.
His buddy was home, and my bro got his pizza. That was a lot of trouble
for a pizza. Well, actually there were six pizzas ... very puny, frozen
pizzas. Baby called tonight. I was glad to hear from her. She said that
she took her mom to Multnomah Falls. Tomorrow, baby's daughter will be
not going to school so they can drive out to the coast. Baby's mom has
a big day planned for Saturday. That will be her last day in Oregon. She
will be flying back to NY later in the evening. Baby and I will have a
lot to discuss once she arrives, especially now that I am having second
thoughts about residing here. My patience with the Hawai'ian Style of doing
things is wearing very thin. I know that I need to chill, or I'm going
to lose my damned mind. I'm even beginning to miss the Chimptm.
Another day, and still no Net access. The worst
part of this whole ordeal is that I am out of touch with my virtual homeys.
Well, at least the sun was out. Actually, it does not matter. Rain or shine,
it's always hot here. I perused the classifieds while drinking my morning
coffee. I noticed that every single ad (including the peon jobs) stipulated
between two to six years of "professional" work experience. There's
my problem. I have no experience whatsoever. Then, it hit me like a ton
of bricks. Those positions are for people who will do the actual work and
cover for all the corporate layers of tenured duffers who do nothing except
steal office supplies and use the phone for personal calls. Sheesh! I worked
on my six-four again. I adjusted the carb and took a drive out to the GTE
Phone Mart. It was a chaotic place. When a customer service professional
finally assisted me, she said that she could not help with me with my cell
phone billing. I would have to call GTE Mobilnet. I then asked about touch-tone
service for moms. She said that she couldn't help me because I was not
the subscriber. I was given another number to call. That was the first
time in a long while that I could feel the rage welling up inside. I almost
did some yelling, but I refrained. It took me an hour to drive there in
traffic, and all I got were a couple of phone numbers. Ho, da buggah!
To top it all off, my six-four was still running a little rough and my
former favorite radio station, I-94, was playing da man's music! Whassup
Saturday March 15
I called GTE when I got back. Moms verified the
information. Touch-tone service will be activated on Monday. I also called
a few local Internet cafés as a possible contingency. The rates
were reasonable, but I was told that I could not upload any files from
my disk. Whassup wi' dat? Haven't we heard of anti-virus software? Sheesh!
I had a choice of going to one of those Net cafés and checking my
e-mail, or going to Safeway to look for granola. Exciting guy that I am,
I chose neither. I worked on my journal, and then I looked at my photo
album. Baby will be here in exactly a week.
Fodgers and doughnuts! Just kidding! Don't you
miss those days? I know I do. Everyone left early this morning, so I went
to Safeway and bought a couple of power bars for breakfast. I called GTE
Mobilnet and was connected with the offices on the mainland. Apparently,
customer service in Hawai'i is available only during banker's hours. The
whole situation is turning into a comedy of errors. I worked on my six-four
again. I tweaked the carb as best as I could, but my six-four still runs
a little rough. I have a few other cosmetic repairs that I need to attend
to before I put it up for sale. Moms bought a new dresser. My bro and I
spent the afternoon putting it together. The rains started up again in
the late afternoon. As much as I enjoyed driving in the rain the other
day, I decided that it was best to stay in. Baby called while I was playing
with my computer. I talked to baby's daughter, too. They had just gotten
back from the airport. It was nice to talk to baby, although I think I
sounded like a putz on the phone. I'm not big on phone conversations, and
I despise small talk. That's probably another reason no one will hire the
ol' lavahead. Maybe I should throw in a Pidgin English lesson. The
word for the day is pilau, which means "dirty." Actually, it's a
Hwai'ian word. Here's an example ... "Eh, Dirty Kimo, you one pilau
buggah!" Or, how about Pilau Kimo? Sheesh!
Sunday March 16
I got up early and spent all day working on my
six-four. The sun was out, and I managed to get a terrible sunburn. I had
to take a cold shower and I could not even put a shirt on because it hurt
so bad. Can you imagine the pain I will be in when I finally hit the sack?
At least I finished all the cosmetic work on my six-four. It's looking
so good that I am having second thoughts about selling it. You know, I
noticed that I am the only person driving around with out-of-state plates.
Why? I don't even know.
Monday March 17
Before I left Oregon, I told baby that the eleven
days prior to her arrival here will pass quickly. So far, that has not
been the case. I can't believe it, but there are still five more days left.
Sheesh! Of course, I have yet to do anything productive. I am basically
in bereavement because of my inability to access my beloved AIX account.
I am lost without LoserNet. Well, hey! I am the CEO! All I have
now is Home Alone. My nephew loves that movie, so we have to watch
it every single day. Is this my destiny, or what?
Tuesday March 18
|The rains started up again last night, and there
were flash flood warnings in effect. I did not sleep at all because of
my chronic sunburn. Every square inch of my back hurts. I had to use my
nephew's toy chair because it is the only piece of furniture that allowed
me to sit upright without touching the sunburned areas. I did a little
more work on my six-four. I happened to notice that some of the welds are
coming apart, which I suspect was the result of the accident a few years
ago. Moms made Lau Lau for dinner. After we ate, it was time for ... you
guessed it ... Home Alone. Sheesh! Baby called tonight and, as usual,
I sounded like a putz. She has arranged for Da Gish to give her a ride
to the airport, and a friend will pick her up when she returns to Portland.
Everything here is still in a state of disarray. I have a lot to do before
||After we ate, it
was time for... you guessed it... Home Alone.
I saw a job listing in the classifieds that stated,
"Entry-level position ... blah, blah ... 1-2 years experience required."
Say what? I'm beginning to think that I need to start up a computer consultation
firm. Rather than becoming a company peon, I can immediately cut out the
middle man. I would bid for contracts and be able to talk duffer-to-duffer.
It would all work out. Really? No, not really. The touch-tone service was
activated this morning. I waited until late in the evening to try to access
my beloved AIX account. Of course, all ten (free access) modem lines were
busy for hours. Oh, the things I do for LoserNet.
After two hours of seeing the word "Busy" flashed
multiple times upon the screen of my beloved computer, I was finally able
to access my beloved AIX account. It took just a couple of minutes to upload
my file and reset its attributes. However, downloading my e-mail took about
ten minutes (at long distance rates). Most of it was junk stuff.
One was an e-zine that featured the editor's favorite Web site ... the
competitor's journal! Sheesh! Why can't LoserNet get a publicity break
like that? I worked on my six-four yet again. I removed the seats. Then,
I cleaned and painted all the rusted parts. I also painted the floorboard.
Well, hey! I have no carpets! I ended up stripping the threads on three
bolts when I put everything back together. The six-four is gradually weaning
me of itself. I am ready to sell it.
Wednesday March 19
After dinner, it was time for Home Alone.
I decided to pass on that gala event and play with my beloved computer.
I am ready to load up Wolfenstein! Oddly, my computer has been overheating
since the ambient temperature is much warmer here than on the mainland.
I must be careful because I will not be able to replace it. Baby called
again tonight, and I was happy to hear from her. I also talked with her
daughter briefly. There are only two more days left before baby and I are
Upon completion of the last bit of the cosmetic
work on my six-four, I drove over to Long's Drugs to buy a "For Sale" sign.
When I walked back to my six-four, I noticed that some stud had parked
his black BMW 5-Series next to my six-four. I saw the same ugly, blue sticker
that the DMV issued to me (so I could keep my Cali plates) on the BMW.
I looked at his plates ... California! No wonder he parked next to me.
Well, at least I know that I'm not alone now. Sheesh! I put the "For Sale"
sign on the windshield of my six-four. The highlight of the day was a call
from the Bishop. He had some bad news. Big Don passed away this afternoon
at home. Apparently he had cancer, which I did not know about it. The
Bull had told me that Big Don was suffering from medical complications,
and I thought it was from his heart surgery last year. I was a little upset
since I didn't visit him while I was in Convalescent City last month. Well,
here's to you, Big Don. We will all miss you. The Bull has broken up with
his babe, Laura. The breakup has hit The Bull pretty hard and he has been
despondent. The Bishop has a new babe, Cynthia, whom he met in massage
school. She is currently in Monterey because her mom is ill. The Bishop
is still planning his world tour this Summer, so we may see him, that is,
if I am still here. I spent the rest of the evening reading (well, skimming
through) computer documentation about Visual Basic and SQL. I know nothing
about that stuff. No wonder I can't get a job!
Thursday March 20
I can't help but wonder what baby will think of
the kama'aina lifestyle. Hawai'i can be a strange place. My family
has some odd quirks. Moms, for example, has saved hundreds of those little
styrofoam trays that meat and poultry products are packed with at the supermarket.
She uses them as if they are plates. I tried to tell moms that the surface
of those trays are porous and germs could fester there. Aside from that,
moms has a lot of wisdom and I listen to what she has to say. My bro and
his wife have been living with moms for about seven years now since they
were married. They met when they both worked at Pizza Hut. Moms gave them
a great deal. They pay about $200 per month in rent. Try to find that anywhere
else in Hawai'i. Essentially, they have taken over moms' house. Every room
is either full of my nephew's toys or serves as storage for the junks
they have amassed over the years. My bro has assumed the role of head of
the household. I cannot help but wonder what is going on. I think that
they eventually want moms' house. I can do nothing about all of this. After
all, I cannot even contribute to the household. Although nothing has been
said, I know that there is very little respect for my presence. I am basically
a leach in the eyes of my family. My bro knows that the ol' lavahead is
a loser. Although he is ten years younger than I, my bro has taken it upon
himself to give me frequent advice. I can offer no rebuttal because my
words have no weight in this household. I must live in shame.
I neglected to mention that the Time Bomb (my
old wind-up clock) is now sitting on my dresser. My bro was actually using
it in the living room when I flew back to Oregon in December. Moms asked
her friend make a flower lei for me to give to baby. Her friend dropped
it off this morning. It was made of Puakinikini flowers and was in a plastic
bag inflated with air. Moms took the bag and let it float in a bucket of
water to keep it fresh. Then, moms and I left for Ala Moana so she could
buy a larger rice cooker. Of course, we took my six-four. I think moms
enjoys riding in my six-four, even though it has no windows. We ate lunch
at Shirokiya. When we returned home, we walked to Foodland. I always walk
down with moms to the supermarket and help her carry the groceries back.
She seems to know almost everyone in the store, most likely because she
is there almost every day. Moms likes to walk for exercise, and because
she does not drive. I received several calls about the junks I have
for sale. A babe came by and bought my six-five (mountain bike). I had
just put it back together, and I rode it for one last time. I was a little
sad. At least I now have some dough, just in case I want to visit baby
this Spring. Speaking of baby, I called her tonight to make final arrangements.
I also wanted to make sure that she bought a Fred Meyer disposable camera.
You know, that is the official camera of LoserNet. Ho boy! Baby will be
here at 6:40pm tomorrow.
Friday March 21
I attempted to access my beloved AIX account by
long distance dial-up. Well, I keep losing my connection because all ten
(free access) modems are in need of repair. Even worse, everything on the
system was running extremely slow. It was about as bad as when I remotely
accessed the system from Oregon. I suspect that the system migration is
at the root of the problem. Well, wait until moms see the phone bill. That
will prompt me to seek a new ISP ASAP. Sheesh! I downloaded my e-mail,
and found that one was from The Bull (EquityBull@aol.com). He mentioned
the passing of our dear friend, Big Don. He also mentioned his breakup
with Laura, and that he and the Cardinal went to Las Vegas.
Saturday March 22
I made final preparations for baby's arrival. I
drove to the airport and managed to end up on the wrong level (arrivals).
I circled around the airport and found the right level (departures). The
reason that I needed to be on the departures level was to access the gates.
I turned into the parking structure to park. With only a few minutes to
spare, I made my way to the gate. The plane arrived on time. I presented
the Puakinikini lei to baby when she emerged from the plane. Baby and I
took a stroll through the airport gardens before picking up her baggage.
We left the airport and drove toward home. I decided to give baby a brief
tour of Waikiki, so we got off the H-1 freeway. The drive took us through
part of town, the heart of Waikiki, and along the coastal perimeter of
Diamond Head. When we arrived at home, baby met moms and the rest of the
family. Baby was tired from the long trip, and so we decided to call it
an early evening.
We are now officially on Hawai'ian time. That
means we make it to wherever we're going whenever we feel like it. We walked
to Koko Marina and looked around. We stopped in at the gym there. Mind
you, this is the only gym between Hawai'i Kai and town. It was a very small
place with limited equipment, and it was overpriced. Later, I took baby
to Ala Moana Center, Hawai'i's largest open-air shopping mall. The AM/PM
Festival was this weekend's big event. There were free samples and demonstrations
at almost every store. A fashion show with special appearance by Hawai'i's
own, Tia Carrére, was the main attraction. The whole place was extremely
crowded. It took us a while to find parking. However, we managed to see
the entire mall. Baby bought a few gifts and postcards. We made it home
in time for dinner, and then we drove into Waikiki at night. Waikiki is
an exciting place. There are always thousands of people milling about along
Kalakaua Ave and Kuhio Ave. Of course, most of them are tourists. Waikiki
is a mess, though. It has turned into the Mecca of crappy, overpriced merchandise.
Does there seem to be a theme developing here? I took baby on a walking
tour and showed her the historic Royal Hawai'ian and Moana hotels. We also
perused world famous International Marketplace. We sat on a bench along
what remains of old Waikiki Beach, adjacent to Kapi'olani Park. Most of
that section still looked the same as it did when I was a kid. There was
a new statue of Duke Kahanamoku, one of Hawai'i's famous surfers. We stayed
in Waikiki pretty late, or at least until our feet were hurting so bad
that we couldn't walk anymore.
Sunday March 23
The weather took a turn for the worst. Heavy rains
with extremely gusty winds made it almost impossible to do anything. Frankly,
it looked about as dismal as a bad day in Oregon. Rather than stay in,
baby and I went to Kahala Mall to look around. It took forever for us to
find parking. We finally just parked out on the street and ran to the mall.
Fortunately, there was a Starbuck's Coffee joint so we got a couple of
hot cups of coffee. We looked around the mall, but there is only so much
window shopping a person can do. We spent the evening at home. The gusty
winds and torrential rain precluded any other activity.
Monday March 24
The bad weather continued, and I am beginning
to feel bad that baby came all the way to Hawai'i to see weather that she
is already too familiar with. Baby and I walked down to Koko Marina with
moms when the rain stopped. Moms wanted to do some shopping. It started
pouring again just as we made it there. Baby was able to check Hawai'i's
inflated prices. We helped moms carry her groceries home when the rain
finally stopped. Baby and I went to Ala Moana in the afternoon. She had
seen a Liberty House ad for a Clinique promotion, and she wanted to pick
up the free gift. It was not as crowded as Saturday, so we were able to
comfortably peruse more of the stores. Baby's search for the elusive Haw's
Flakes came to an end when she found them at the Crack Seed Center. Haw's
Flakes are small fruit-flavored wafers. Baby's friend Mel had given her
some in Oregon and baby has not been able to find them since. Once again,
the bad weather limited our options. We waited outside until the rain clouds
passed. We walked around the neighborhood several times, dodging the rain.
There really is no way to avoid the rain. In Hawai'i, rain is an everyday
event. Normally, though, it does not pour like it has been. Rather, there
are brief intermittent showers all day. And, the rain is usually accompanied
by the cool Trade Winds instead of the recent hurricane-velocity gusts.
Tuesday March 25
Baby tried to get a suntan for about an hour in
the backyard. The wind was blowing everything around and the rain came
down sporadically so she gave up. The bad weather got worse with heavier
showers and very gusty winds. Baby and I drove toward town anyway. We did
the walking tour of some of the historic sights including the State Capitol,
the Iolani Palace, and the Kawai'aha'o Church. Most of the sights are dwarfed
by tall buildings which have been constructed in more recent years, which
is pretty sad.
Wednesday March 26
baby and I left, I began cooking the large turkey moms had in the kamado.
A kamado is something like a large Weber BBQ only it is made out
of ceramic. When we returned home, the turkey was ready. We had quite a
feast because the turkey almost tasted like Kalua Pig. After dinner, baby
and I braved the bad weather and drove to Waikiki. We had to park my six-four
by Kapi'olani Park. That afforded us a nice walk along the beach. We did
the tourist thing and checked out just about every shop. My eyes were strained
from looking at all the T-shirts and da kine junks. Baby was having
a great time looking for bargains (a misnomer in Waikiki) and gifts to
bring back to Oregon. Of course, the main attraction of Waikiki at night
is the crowds of zany people milling about endlessly. That is about the
only side show available for free anymore, at least here in Hawai'i.
The weather cleared up a little, but it was still
very windy. I saw what appeared to be blue sky out toward Sandy Beach,
so I asked baby if she wanted me to drop her off there. When we got to
Sandy Beach, the weather was very nice. It was probably the sunniest place
on the whole island. I came back home for about an hour. Rain clouds filled
the sky, so I drove to the beach to pick up baby. The sky cleared up just
as we left the beach. That's Hawai'i for ya! Since there was a break in
the weather, we drove into Koko Crater. I had never been inside Koko Crater
before, even though it is almost right in moms' yard. The botanical gardens
within the crater appeared unkempt. However, it really is a treasure of
botanical delights. We spent over an hour walking the inner perimeter of
the crater and perusing the way Hawai'i looked long before anyone settled
Thursday March 27
After lunch, I decided that we could catch a few
other sights. I did not feel that it would be prudent to tour the island
when the clouds looked as ominous as they did. We drove toward Kane'ohe
and visited the Haiku Gardens. The rains did a moderate amount of damage
to the gardens, however. The rain clouds hovered closely to the Ko'olau
mountain range, but there were only infrequent showers. I decided to drive
to the Pali lookout. The Pali is close to the top of the mountain range.
These mountains are of particular interest because of their steep and jagged
rock formations. I managed to take the wrong turn and ended up on the Likelike
Highway instead of the Pali Highway. Both of these roads seem to predate
functional traffic planning as there are no exits until they reach their
destination in downtown Honolulu. Since we were inadvertently returning
to town, we drove to Punchbowl National Cemetery. The cemetery resides
in a medium-sized dormant volcanic crater. My favorite uncle, Uncle Mike,
was buried there. I told baby that I have never found him. Baby convinced
the ol' lavahead that we should find Uncle Mike. However, Mike was not
my uncle's real name. That frustrated the search because we had narrowed
the field down to two choices. We found the first marker easily, but the
second one eluded us and had us hiking around most of Punchbowl. As it
turned out, the first marker was the correct one. Uncle Mike is buried
just a stone's throw from the Memorial building. We then drove up to the
Pali lookout. Legend has it that King Kamehameha was thrown off the Pali
by his enemies, but the strong winds carried him to safety. The winds at
the Pali were extremely gusty, most likely because of the storm that has
lingered on for days. We had difficulty walking to the edge of the lookout.
Sheesh! Moms managed to procure some fresh papaya for baby. The locals
love to trade fruits that they grow in their backyards. Baby had her first
The weather this evening permitted us to only walk
down to Koko Marina and back. It turned out to be a nice walk, and we made
it back just in time before the rain started. As we walked up the driveway,
we could hear my nephew screaming and my bro yelling. Rain or not, we decided
that it was time to continue our walk. When we returned, I saw my sister-in-law
sitting in the hallway cradling my nephew in her arms. My bro had locked
her out of their room. Moms was still up, too. As it turned out, my bro
had lost it. He and my sister-in-law have a difference in opinion of how
they should raise my nephew. My sister-in-law has a very permissive style
of disciplining. For example, it takes her over a half-an-hour to get my
nephew "in the mood" to leave for daycare every morning. When I talked
with moms, I found out that the bro had assaulted her. I suspect that big
trouble is brewing, and I don't want to be around when that happens.
Hawaii Five-O officially started filming
again today here in Hawai'i. Book 'em, Danno! Speaking of Danno, he's now
the governor of Hawai'i in the pilot episode of the new series. While baby
absorbed a few photons in the backyard, I worked on my six-four. I did
minor surgery again on the carburetor. I calibrated everything. The carb
seemed to be running fine. Baby and I drove to Ala Moana. We walked across
the street to Ala Moana Beach Park and took a leisurely stroll. This beach
is more of a local hangout. We tried to find the banyan tree courtyard
that we saw on one of the Hawai'i Web pages. There was nothing remotely
close to it. We spent a little time at Ala Moana, just to kill some time.
The weather was still not cooperating, so we just walked down to Koko Marina
in the evening.
Friday March 28
I am not sure whether baby is having a great time.
I promised that she would, but I spoke prematurely given my non-existent
finances. One purpose of her trip here was to determine whether moving
here would be feasible. As we continue to talk, I find that we have been
living in a dream world. There will be many obstacles for both of us to
overcome, some of which may be insurmountable. I have been debating whether
I should visit Oregon this Spring. We may have to say good-bye for the
last time in three days. What would be the difference in saying good-bye
now or three months from now? That issue has been a thorn in my side now
for a while. We have spent so much time together since our initial meeting
exactly one year ago. Yes ... unbelievable, isn't it? One year ago, baby
drove to Convalescent City. Time is passing much too quickly.
Baby and I toured part of the island. We had a
late start, but we were able to complete the circuit, at least on the Eastern
half of the island. We made several stops, the first being the Byodo-In
in the Valley of the Temples. The Byodo-In is a replica of a Japanese Buddhist
temple. It is also home the largest cast bronze Buddha outside of Japan.
We brought along a small lunch and ate it there since the temple grounds
were so peaceful. We continued the tour along the windward side of the
island. We visited the Turtle Bay Hilton. Naturally, we had to pay to park.
Our next stop was the Pu'u O Mahuka Heiau near Waimea Bay. Pu'u O Mahuka
is an ancient Hawai'ian temple and burial ground. In Haleiwa, we had shave
ice at the world famous Matsumoto General Store. Baby had her shave ice
with azuki beans, and I had mine with ice cream. It was still early when
we reached downtown Honolulu, so we stopped in at the Aloha Tower. We took
the elevator up to the observation deck. The view of the city was magnificent.
Yet another shopping complex has been constructed adjacent to the tower.
Although it was tastefully done, it continues to reinforce the heavy tourist
influence. Moms made Lau Lau for dinner. Baby was able to savor the real
thing for the first time. We went to Waikiki again this evening. Baby has
become addicted to the Waikiki night life! When we returned home, moms
told me that my bro had another disagreement with my sister-in-law. He
threw all of her clothes out into the hall. I'm not sure what is going
on, but something is stressing out the bro. That made me appreciate my
relationship with baby. We have many differences, but we seem to get along
Saturday March 29
and I walked to Hanauma Bay, which is a short distance from moms' place.
There is now an admission charge to access the beach. Kama'ainas
get in free, but I do not have any Hawai'i identification as yet. The view
from the top of the ridge (actually Koko Head) was spectacular. The bay,
itself, was once an active volcano. Now, most of it is submerged in water.
We got a little sunburned from the walk because the weather finally cleared
up. We went back to Ala Moana again. Baby had to buy some last minute gifts,
and we spent some time just walking around. Moms warmed up the Lau Lau
for dinner. She also obtained two Plumeria leis for baby. We were off to
Waikiki again after dinner. We spent the evening walking amongst the tourists.
I can't say that Waikiki is a fun place to be. However, baby wanted to
savor as much of the tourist experience as she could.
Sunday March 30
kahuna has finally struck. My six-four ran bad all day. It was stalling
and there was a bad vibration at cruising speeds. The vibration seems to
be in the drivetrain. Woe is me! Then, I tried to upload my journal to
my beloved AIX site and received an error message that my disk space was
full. I checked my quota and found that my allowable disk space was zero!
I can delete files all I want, but I cannot add anything. It looks like
I have been given a clear message that it is time for me to move LoserNet.
However, what good will that do if I cannot put a redirection link in the
original pages? Sheesh!
Baby and I stayed up pretty late. We spent the
time talking about the road that lies ahead. I've observed baby during
her time here. She has some very typical mainland characteristics, but
I think that she will fit in very well here. It takes a little time to
shed the mainland quirks for the kama'aina lifestyle. The people
who never adjust usually end up leaving. Dealing with the locals can require
extreme patience. I have to admit that some of the locals get on my nerves
occasionally. I'm sure that baby's daughter will enjoy Hawai'i. Kids have
a good life here, although they speak a lot of Pidgin English. The
only way to find out is, of course, to try to live here for a while. Finances
may preclude an extended trial, but I don't think that the learning curve
in adjusting to the kama'aina life is too steep. I forgot to mention
that Kevin (firstname.lastname@example.org) called. He just returned from his
trip to the East Coast to meet Annie. They had called in the middle of
the week, but baby and I were out in Waikiki. Kevin had a great time, although
he and Annie have put the brakes on insofar as far as any romantic inclinations
are concerned. Perhaps that is a prudent move. Long distance relationships
are very difficult maintain. Sooner or later, one party has got to move.
I know that all too well.
Baby began packing when she got up this morning.
The weather today was beautiful. Too bad it waited until baby's last day
here to clear up. We had our morning coffee and walked to Koko Marina just
for something to do. Later, we drove to Waikiki yet again. I was surprised
that I found parking in the "jungle." We walked all through Kapi'olani Park
and back into Hotel Row along Kalakaua Ave. On the way home, we drove to
Diamond Head crater. We hiked up the trail that took us to the top of the
ridge. There were several old bunkers from the war that now served as observation
decks. The view of the city and Waikiki was nothing less than breathtaking.
The hike took about two hours. When we finally returned home, baby finished
packing. We had a nice dinner and left for the airport shortly afterward.
When we finally got through baggage check, it was already time for her
to board the plane. We walked to the Northwest Airlines gate, only to discover
that just the passengers could enter. We sat outside and talked until final
call. I put the two Plumeria leis on her. We bid each other farewell. She
walked in through the gate and came by where I was standing near the plate
glass window. We both put our hands up against the glass. Even with the
glass there, I could feel her touch. Tears were welling up in my eyes.
Every time we say good-bye, I feel devastated. Her stay here was too short.
In retrospect, I wished that I did more to make it exciting. I also wished
that baby didn't have to leave.
Monday March 31
Baby at Diamond Head Lookout
The weather has returned to normal ... sunny and
hot. The gusty winds have been replaced by the occasional Trade Winds.
Baby called this morning to tell me that she was safely back in Oregon.
Her trip home was a nightmare. Baby tried to sleep during the flight home,
but the passenger next to her, an elderly woman, was an insomniac and kept
talking until 3am. Later, the talkative passenger got sick and tossed her
cookies. Breakfast was served at 4am. Her connecting flight from Seattle
was delayed because of mechanical difficulties, so she was put on another
carrier. Baby said that the plane was very small. The person who she thought
was the flight attendant gave the usual safety introduction. Then, to baby's
surprise, the flight attendant disappeared into the cockpit. As the plane
taxied down the runway, baby realized that the flight attendant was actually
the pilot. Sheesh! I walked down to Koko Marina with moms. Along the way,
moms mentioned that she had to schedule a follow-up appointment with her
doctor. That didn't sound right to me, so I pried for details. Moms has
been experiencing some spotting recently. Apparently, this has happened
before and she went in for surgery 15 years ago. Now, she was worried that
she would have to go in for surgery again.
More To Come!
I called around about cheap round-trip airfare
to Oregon. It turned out that most of the deals were for 30-day excursions.
Only Hawai'ian Air allowed a longer period to return. The fare was the
same as I paid for my last trip. I made the reservations, although I will
need to confirm them by Wednesday. My beloved computer and I may be leaving
for Oregon on Sunday.
Continue the adventure now ... move on to April!
The Keeper of Lost Lives: To Tofu ... With Love, Julie Newmar
The Keeper of Lost Lives ... Tralfaz
Moms ... Herself
Baby ... Herself
And a cast of thousands!
© Copyright 1997 by The Keeper of Lost Lives
LoserNettm Love It, or Lose It.