Monday, August 30, 2010

Monday Shmonday

& Thank You

ViSiting ToDay!

"The worst sorrows in life

are not in it's losses

and misfortunes,

but in it's fears."

Christoper Benson

"All that makes earlier times seem simpler

is our ignorance

of their complexities."

Thomas Sowell

"It's awfully important to know

what is

and what isn't

your business."

Gertrude Stein

“Don't Keep reaching for the stars

because you'll just look like an idiot

stretching that way for no reason”

Jimmy Fallon

I like the way the crane and yellow leaf converse visually.

"Follow the yellow brick road."

E. Y. Harburg


Hope you had a great weekend!

I'm still recovering, and can't wait to share

as soon as I know which end is

up. . .

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Guest Post


Welcome :)

View of urban Honolulu's Makiki neighborhood.

That "hill" at top is Punchbowl,
home of the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific
where President Obama's Grandfather
(in whose home the boy lived for years)
a WWII veteran, lies among generations of warriors.

The Hawaiians call it Puowaina, "the place of sacrifice,"
which it was once - the human kind.

That's MY view!

I'm Priscilla;
I'm happy that many of you asked about me.
No, Cloudia is just a friend of a friend
(my human Mykal).

That view above is MINE.
You see:
I'm an aristocrat.

My hay is always kept fresh,
here in my Makiki penthouse.

Wanna see Mykal's room?

Look at the rare Seattle Sea-Hawks headgear.
I like when he wears his wing helmet though.
We look like gods together then!

But I haven't forgotten my roots. . .
At my direction
Cloudia has posted a slide show she made
of some country bumpkins


Thursday, August 26, 2010


Aloha Friend!

“The three great elemental sounds in nature

are the sound of rain,

the sound of wind in a primeval wood,

and the sound of outer ocean on a beach.”

-Henry Beston

Random look.

“Look deep into nature,

and then you will understand everything better.”

Albert Einstein

I'm Priscilla.
I sleep on hay in a penthouse apartment overlooking the mountains.

“Well-being and happiness

never appeared to me as an absolute aim.

I am even inclined to compare such moral aims

to the ambitions of a pig.”

Albert Einstein


“I like pigs.

Dogs look up to us.

Cats look down on us.

Pigs treat us as equals.”

Winston Churchill


Some days you have a great insight;

Some days you have a great sandwich.

Isn't life


thanks for visiting

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Rabbi's Story

Aloha Welcome to You

Mountain, Water, Fire & Air
at Haiku Gardens

"Imagination is the highest kite one can fly."

Lauren Bacall

The "Big Store" is humbled by these epic skies,

by their tales & memories

"Throw your dreams into space like a kite,

and you do not know what it will bring back,

a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country"

Anais Nin

Meanwhile, back in Honolulu Town, life goes on.



What was it he said that stuck in my mind all these years,

these decades,

these ages of life?

About enjoying his child times, playing with his friends;

'This must be the best time of life?' He thought.

Playing basketball in college, his yarmulke bobby-pinned to his


about winning with the team;

'This has to be the best time of life.'

Of courting & marriage,

'The best moments of life' He thought

until his first child was born.

Turning to his own father as they looked at the newborn,

an ancient Rabbi with an ancient beard,

'Pop,' he said 'This is the greatest moment of my life!'

His father only smiled wider and said

'Wait till your first grand child is born;

THAT is life's sweetest moment!'

L'Chaim! To Life!

It sure beats the alternative!

Just for today,

let's not get angry,

let's not be afraid.

A wonderful post is HERE at Writing in Faith.

And thanks to Pagan Sphinx
for the smashing shot of fire on the beach that
inspired me to post my top shot today.

Hers is better. HERE

toodles, cloudia

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Morning in Chinatown


Let's stroll through Honolulu's Chinatown -

the oldest Chinatown in what is now the USA-

Hawaiian Skies Above-

"The air up there in the clouds is very pure and fine,

bracing and delicious.

And why shouldn't it be? -

it is the same the angels breathe."

Mark Twain

Urban street scenes below-

"With true friends . . .

even water drunk together is sweet enough."

- Chinese proverb

See those Manapua in the basket?


Campaign season must pass through Chinatown!

"To be uncertain is to be uncomfortable,

but to be certain is to be ridiculous."

- Chinese proverb

"Happiness is not a horse, you cannot harness it."

- Chinese proverb

A Shinto priest prepares for the service.

"Think not that dreams appear to the dreamer only at night:

the dream of this world of pain appears to us even by day."


The Temple stands ready.

"Wafted into my room, the scent of the flowers of the plum-tree

Changes my broken window into a source of delight."

Japanese Poem

Lion Dancers are ready.

"A man's fortune must first be changed from within."
- Chinese proverb

Monday, August 23, 2010

The 200



All the visitors
seemed to be enjoying Waikiki this weekend. . .

"I want to express my feelings,

not illustrate them."

Jackson Pollock

If you like more solitude,
you can learn how to
Windsurf. . .

"Our lives

teach us who we are."

Salman Rushdie

But as I ALWAYS say,

we are so much more than a beach. . .

It's BON Season.

Time to dance with the ancestors again. . .

Looks like the Soto Mission is going off this weekend.

Had to go back Saturday night and enjoy it!


What a burst of happiness this morning
when I saw that the 200th person,
heck! that Two Hundred and TWO
have joined this blog!



When I was little,
my brother and I had a cheap little reel-to-reel tape recorder.

We used to record a play "radio show" on it.

My little brother didn't like the fact that it was MY show
and that he was my side kick.

But I was older and had a bigger mouth.

The idea of actually having a real audience
was a kids pipe dream back then.

Back then, even parents didn't pretend to be interested
in their kids' activities
beyond saying stuff like:
"Turn that off!"

When I was a little older
a neighbor boy had a tiny pirate radio station in his basement
and we used to broadcast in a one block radius
that the FCC trucks would roll up on us
and take us to federal prison.

Later, I got to play around in college and public radio.

Then THIS, this blog thing!

Warhol said that everyone will be famous for 15 minutes.

And today I really do "broadcast" to the world!

I'm no Arianna Huffington

but 2o2 of you have joined!

A bunch more look in daily!

And just as exciting,

I have met YOU,

lots of other FAMOUS people

in far flung places.

You share your world

better than any mass media could

and together we are building the future,

you, me, and all those cool folks in my blog roll

(please visit them).

Thank you.

Thank you for letting me in your club,

our club.

You are more appreciated

than you probably realize.



"Happiness itself does not stay -

only moments of happiness do."

- Spanish Proverb

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Wash Plce, Liliuo Kupuna, Kapu

August 21, 1959
Hawaii Becomes the 50th US State.

historical background HERE

Queen Liliuokalani,
AKA Mrs. Dominis

The Palace

KAPU (taboo) means 'set apart'
'special' 'holy'


Friday, August 20, 2010

Waikiki Weekend


These are the hot & hazy days here in Honolulu.

Temperatures politely approach 90f
but the even more considerate Trade Winds
our impossibly blue skies,
cinematic clouds,
and the resort atmosphere,
make it all
O K.

our blogging pal Friko
posted a brilliant meditation
that really spoke to my heart.


This isle is so full
of a number of things
that I'm sure we all should be
as kings!

This weekend:
Dukes Ocean Fest will honor the 120th anniversary of the birth of our
Olympic champ, Father of Surfing, Ambassador of Aloha:
Duke Kahanamoku.

Festival Site

There is to be a day long block party in my dear Chinatown;

The much anticipated book launch of

The Value of Hawaii
is scheduled for Sunday, August 22nd, 3-5 pm
@ Native Books, Ward Warehouse

Free and open to the public

more here.

Of course I need some quality time buzzing around
on my motorbike!

A COSPLAY (costume play) gathering
in the full daylight of Sand Island Beach
is imposing an irresistible pull on my camera.

And all of YOUR tasty blog posts entice!

Ah! August Weekend!

Such a lovely phrase. . .

Duke Kahanamoku, second from left.


"In Hawaii we greet friends, loved ones,
or strangers
with Aloha,
which means with love...
try meeting or leaving people with
and you will be surprised by their reactions.
I believe it,
and it is my creed.
Aloha to You."

Excerpt from the calling card of
Duke Kahanamoku

Aloha to YOU! cloudia

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Tread Lightly

Aloha Weary Web Traveler!

Rest here in legendary Waikiki for a spell. . .

People simply love this giant banyan right on Kuhio Beach

"Basic research is what I'm doing

when I don't know what I'm doing."

Wernher von Braun

Spires used to be high places in the old days.
Now the residential & commercial towers are higher.
But all remains grounded in flowers... Aloha.

“An instinctive taste teaches men to build

their churches with spire steeples

which point as with a silent finger to the sky and stars.”

Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Light's the WHOLE thing,
in nature,
and in US.


"Our job

is to tend to our own growth as people,

our grace and integrity and humility.

We need no other goal.

The core of our being

then grows into a substantial


externally as well as internally.

Our ministry becomes

a direct line of creation,

from God

through us

to all mankind."

Marianne Williamson

Well, we are influencing others all the time...

what "mood" what "attitude"

are YOU contributing?

I'm a recovering nervous wreck,

so really living these truths

is what makes my life


It feels a lot better,
and people respond better.

And the last US combat brigade has left Iraqi soil.

Good luck to the Iraqi people.

Little by little. . .

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Walk & Talk Waikiki

Aloha Sweetie!

you can click on these shots if you like :)

"Certain kinds of truths

are convincing

only in narrative."

Adam Gropnik

so let me tell you a story as we walk...

"Be passers-by."

in the Gospel of Thomas

We walk aimlessly through Waikiki. . .

Everywhere the story unfolds. . .

superceding. . . so that i forget what was wanting to be said. . .

"We think that by naming

we can understand,

as if the tongue

were more than muscle."

Gary Whitehead


We are all purveyors

or our own opinions;

Behaving as evangelists,

shouting on street corners,

assuming each passer-by

is a heathen.

If only they would listen



Sharing stolen zingers

no one's listening to deeply held beliefs;

is it any wonder


finds no place

to grow?

So glad YOU stopped by! cloudia

Monday, August 16, 2010

Salute to TV


"Beauty triumphs over the suffering inherent in life."


"It is an interesting question

how far men would retain their

relative rank

if they were divested of their clothes."

~Henry David Thoreau

"No one can earn a million dollars honestly."

- William Jennings Bryan



Salute to TV

Vicarious adventure

on my screen

this is really much deeper

than it seems.

Procedure and science

mixed with screams

exposing (inviting?)

dark, dark dreams.


that rules the night

washing us in the flickers

of your light

I wish I may

I wish I might

awake from the dream

where you've wrapped me so tight.


Sunday, August 15, 2010

Carl Chopin

Aloha, Friend

Today I re-post a tribute (from LAST August)
to a great friend that I lost a long time ago.

I never fail to think of him during his birth month, and smile at his "issues" about sharing it with National Clown Month!

You were no clown Carl.
I'll never forget you.

"Keep true to the dreams of your youth. "
Friedrich von Schiller

"The youth, intoxicated with his admiration of a hero, fails to see, that it is only a projection of his own soul, which he admires "
Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Forty is the old age of youth; fifty is the youth of old age."
Victor Hugo

"What though youth gave love and roses, Age still leaves us friends and wine."
Thomas More

"The love we have in our youth is superficial compared to the love that an old man has for his old wife."
Will Durant


I was 15 in a new neighborhood.

The High School I attended was a big, modern red brick factory, a "good" school. But I found it rather dehumanizing.

While the Beatles sang, and I attended the first Earth Day in Philadelphia's Fairmount Park, my school was run by crew-cutted, career educators who believed in instilling certain values in the boys and girls in order to stem the tide of psychedelic social rebellion that they abhorred.

School was all about proving them right, and the independent, inquiring student WRONG! Criticism had not yet been supplanted by "self esteem." Athletes were idolized, artists had better focus on some REAL career and choose a college before they threw their lives away. . .

North East High School
seemed like a strange anachronism to be stuck in.

Famed doumentarian Fredrick Weisman thought the same and used it as the setting for his cinema verite` documentary
"High School."

Audiences laughed, but I had to take off my love beads and low slung bell bottoms and go to school there!

Then I met a boy who lived a couple of miles away and attended another school, a "worse" school where he was the butt of abuse for being dark and quiet with amazingly expressive brown eyes.

The bullys loved to see pain register in those eyes
and called him The Mexican.

He was actually Jewish, with a grandfather who had escaped poverty, sanctioned abuse, and a forced 20 year stretch in the Russian Army, by leaving Russia on horse back; and who had a picture of himself smoking a hookah with some sepia Turkoman traders. "Fuck the Czar" he always began when asked about those days. I cannot hear anything about the Czar on the History Channel or anywhere else without muttering "Fuck the Czar" under my breath in tribute to the old man.

One time, Carl (my friend) tried to shock grandpa by inviting him to smoke some hash with us.

"Hashish?! He asked incredulously.

"You want to smoke hashish!? - Hashish you EAT!!!!!"

We laughed about that for years.
Heck, I still do!

Carl's family was blue collar too, and we soon became inseparable.

We were both carrying some baggage, OK, full baggage cars FULL of baggage.

We hid out together in his bedroom and he taught me everything about classic films, though people called them "old movies" then, and they papered late night TV clotted with commercials.

He showed me the classic movie goddesses and heroes.
We learned about history, sociology, and culture.
Together we gasped at Busby Berkley's choreography,
and Cagney's style.

We especially loved the film noir of the 50's which spoke well to the lingering, sooty Philadelphia that we lived in.

Our lives entwined.

I had a chance (as a thoughtful troublemaker) to get into a new alternative high school that was a progressive experiment of the times, Parkway.

Carl, moored in high school torment applied among thousands and got in fairly! A bonifide miracle!

But Parkway's head master, a charming Englishman called John Bremer (sp?) would not accede to my Principal's request to de-acquisition me.

I had to cut school and show up at his desk to articulate my absolute need to be in MY new school-reality, he took a liking to me and I was the only part-time student in the 150 student school. Mornings in prison regulated by bells, afternoons in the modern world of education. (Kevin Bacon was one of our stairwell card players, a fellow student that I was kinda scared of.)

Perhaps this is daily bifurcation of my High School days explains why I am such a hybrid bridge builder. (freak?)
Ultimately I became full time and ultimately graduated from Parkway.

Carl and I went to school together every day, & spent all our time together. We schooled ourselves in mind expansion and film culture at night as the adults slept.

Sometimes we'd drive to Chinatown in his mom's Mercury at 3 am for Wor Shu Op (Pressed Duck) at the old South China on 10th street. One night, Jerry Stiller walked in to get take out; he was performing in town with his wife: Stiller & Meara. Their kid, Ben, was in footsie pajamas - not comedy movies back then.

One year, after a full night of ritual drinking, Carl went to South Philly to join the Clown Brigades of the New Year's MUMMER's PARADE. If you are at all interested in folk life, you MUST see the Mummers Parade in Philly! Carl, drunk as regulations and custom demand, lurched up the street with a mob of other civic-minded inebriates doing the "Mummers Strut."

Man, I wish I had film of THAT!

It was a men-only parade (it's a whole culture: pipe fitters in sequins playing banjos in the snow).
Man, I want a Tastykake!
(Spell Check offered: "Testicle" as in: "Man, I want a testicle!" LOL!!!!

Carl and I learned about life together. We grew up a bit. We sold pot for bus fair (allegedly) . "Your boyfriend's gay" my helpful parents pointed out. Guess I'll hang out with a football player; thanks.

Once, he accompanied me on a driving trip with another friend of ours to Vermont so I could interview at Goddard College. Carl interviewed on a whim. Two weeks later we heard: they wanted to give him a scholarship. They sent me a regrets letter. Just like Parkway!
It changed his life.

He "came out" and became a campus star. Faculty member (and famed lesbian author) Rita Mae Brown told him: "Carl, if you were a woman I'd marry you." He started interpreting Joni Mitchell songs in American Sign Language, bringing the lyrics alive to hearing and deaf alike.

Then he got an internship working with warehoused autistic kids. No one cared what Carl did, as long as no one got hurt or loud. He taught them sign language!

The loved his deep eyes that looked into their souls and showed his pain and beauty to them. Several of the kids were "mainstreamed" after that. Unheard of!
But that was Carl.

I went to college at Franconia in New Hampshire (for a year, long story) and we saw each other when we could, but by then we knew that we'd always be close. Before Facebook and Tweeting, we drove around northern New England in old Volkswagen's and Volvos.

30 Miles through a crystal cold night to St. Johnsberry for all- night Duncan Donuts sounds very good when you are lonely and young and free and eager to meet.
And talk.

Eventually, Carl graduated and moved to New York City as he had always dreamed. He was a professional sign language interpreter in the courts - learning everything about a fascinating reality.

Superior Court Judges mothered him. He was free of his abusers, had respect, and had learned to respect himself.
It was the best time ever to be a gay man:
The 1970's in Manhattan!

He was so excited when they asked him to be one of the first sign language interpreters to perform on the front of the Broadway Stage.

There he was in the playbill!

Chopinsky had been shortened to Chopin.

He was beautiful, sought after, and sharing the stage with Tommy Tune, Honey Coles and Twiggy in "My One and Only."
Just one of many productions that featured him.

During intermission, the hearing audience was buzzing about how they couldn't take their eyes off the guy signing.

And Tommy Tune was dancing at his peak then!

When I went back stage, Twiggy was swigging booze straight from the bottle. . . . Sure wish I could find that Play Bill.

Carl had had a lot of emotional and physical wear and tear in his life. We talked about being elderly together and reminiscing about the "good old days."

Bette Middler and Barry Manilow were performing to gay audiences at the "baths" before she was discovered. Bruce Springsteen was playing a bar in Philly every weekend;
Disco all night, and liberation, and a lot of hope for the future.

Then lots of guys started to get sick.

Carl's kidneys failed and he went on relief and on dialysis.
His outer beauty (so important to us then) dimmed - but his soulful eyes grew only richer and deeper.
I can close my eyes and look into them still.

I visited him before moving to Hawaii.

But we would always stay close.

In an instant, a pause, a look, a note, a phone call, we were instantly closer than any two people could be.

So much of each other, so many memories and landmarks shared. . . .

My mom heard from someone in Philly that he had died when she tried to find him for me.

I guess all of the reminiscing of the past weekend (Woodstock) and all the looking at old performances on video, has brought Carl closer than he usually is.

A famed psychic once told me that two friends who have passed accompany me through life.

Perhaps I'll tell you about the other friend on another occasion.

We used to say: "If I close my eyes, you are still there.

There is more to our friendship than what can be touched or heard."

So true.

I often wonder how middle-aged me looks to forever young and handsome Carl. Some day we'll laugh about it.

If your friend(s) of adolescence are still in this world, call them today. Tell them Carl and I say