A Hawaiian Look at Things

So… I just spent the last week in Hawaii and man, is that place different. The first thing you’ll notice is that nobody is really in a hurry. Anywhere. The speed limit on the O’ahu freeways occasionally extends to 60, though very few people maximize the opportunity, but most of the time hovers in the 45 to 55 range. It’s not uncommon at all to be driving on a “highway” at about the same rate of speed that you navigate a school zone in California. Or, about with the same rate of urgency that the Lakers defended Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Or, if you’re looking for an antonym, opposite of the rate that Kobe Bryant threw his teammates (specifically Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum) under the bus. Can you really blame Bynum for saying he doesn’t care where he plays next season?

Another thing that’s odd about Hawaii, specifically O’ahu, is how their streetsigns are erected. Here in California, as in most places in the continental US, a street sign about an approaching freeway will be posted a decent distance before it arrives, as if to say hey, this freeway is coming up in case you wanted to get on it and needed to make a decision about which direction to travel on it. Why thank you, Mr. Streetsign. How kind of you to warn me! In Hawaii, it’s more like hey, back there is where you should have turned if you wanted to get on that freeway. But worry not, I’m sure you’ll find a great place to turn around in about 14 miles. Kind of like how the Lakers were defending Oklahoma City in those last couple of games. In case you were wondering who to guard, it was the guy who just scored an uncontested dunk and is now showboating in front of the scorer’s table.  Wait, did I already use that joke?

Had enough? Tough. A couple more observations from the islands that hit me like a Dustin Brown to Michal Roszival borderline hit.

Yeah, that hibiscus pineapple lemonade DID INDEED have alcohol in it… something I expected and paid for, but doubted until my ill fated attempt to nimbly hop off the barstool and find a mens room.

I don’t care how well behaved your children are, they need to be kept away from the waterslide during prime lunch and dinner hours. Seriously. They can be little angels 21 hours out of the day, but for the 1.5 hours each that cover lunch and dinner, they are screaming banshees. Kind of like no matter how impressive Ted Lilly’s ERA and record are, he’s merely lobbing grapefruits at the plate and it’s a matter of time before he gets raked for double digit runs in two and a third to bring his numbers up closer to his career standard of an ERA around 4… which still seems way better than a guy with questionable stuff and a complete inability to hold baserunners should have.

Enough with the pineapples already. Just… enough.

Additionally, much like Stephen A. Smith, Tony Kornheiser, Michael Wilbon, and a host of others should not take the fact that someone handed them a microphone as license to yell uninformed blither at the masses, people shouldn’t take being a tourist as license to act like a buffoon. A visit to the at-sea memorial for the USS Arizona at Pearl Harbor should be and is sombering to most… though I’d swear I was surrounded by half a dozen Fran Drescher clones… seriously, ladies, there are people at rest here. Shut up and show some respect. 

Lastly, O’ahu must be quite fond of their ABC stores. There’s one on every stinkin’ corner in Waikiki. Seriously. If you don’t know, ABC stores are like a 7-11 and Target smushed into one, and then thrown in a dryer to shrink… or copied and pasted into Microsoft Word and shrunk to 25%. Everything from Hawaiian shirts to souveniers to breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks for in between can be bought there. Why does there need to be one on every corner? I don’t know, but I’m sure it’s for the same reason that every golf tournament that’s broadcast feels the need to show every single one of Tiger Woods’ shots regardless of how far off the pace he is, and ESPN feels the need to show every Yankees game no matter that 9/10 of the country hates them.

Aloha.

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