Monday, June 19, 2006

Hawaii Diarii, Day 2, Part 2

Oh, my head... but I've popped the contacts, and I feel better already.

It's 8 p.m. Hawaii time. Let's see, what have I done since last we spoke...

• Dinner, or as we say back in Jersey, "midnight": L&L Hawaiian BBQ. Place looks like hell, but oh, the food! It looks like a cafeteria - and "for here" is differentiated from "to go" because you don't get a bag with your styrofoam tray and plastic fork. But damn, is that Hawaiian BBQ fine. Normally, my philosophy is a different restaurant every meal, but I'm pretty sure I'll be back for more of those short ribs. Hawaiian BBQ, from what I can tell, is distinguished by being slightly sweet or fruity, but the meat is also fatty, which adds to the flavor. Got some flank steak and not one, but two pieces of teriyaki chicken in the sampler. Yum. And a big ol' Dew to keep me awake.

• Bought my Monkey Casino T-shirt. Entered a drawing, so I have to go back at 9:30. That's OK, because...

• Maybe then I'll work up the nerve for the gun lessons. I went to the "safest" gun range in Honolulu, figuring I'd start with the "safest" over the "largest." Not bad, the basic fee is $35, and they gave me a 20 percent off coupon. But better not just to put a little distance between the Corona I had in the sports bar watching the last 1.9 seconds of the Miami/Dallas basketball game, but to get my glasses on so I can really see. I think sight is probably important when using firearms, though I could be wrong. Some of you may recall my various discussions on my list of things I'd like to do before I die. Firing a gun is one of them, and this seems much better than hunting.

• I also bought my Hawaiian shirt. I paid more than double the going rate for generics, and bought at the historic Avanti store. They're all silk and have been around since the '40s, but the clincher was the big picture of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson smiling and wearing one of their shirts. They say he's from Hawaii, when we all know he's really from Pennsylvania, but his ancestry's Pacific Islander, and if it's good enough for him, it's good enough for me. I can only hope the cool dragon/tiger pattern isn't the Hawaiian equivalent of the Chinese tattoo that the white kid thinks says "strength and honor" when it really means "poseur American."

• Finally, it's never a good sign when the fire truck with screaming siren is headed for YOUR hotel.

• And, post-finally, I got my Mom a birthday gift - always nice to buy something kind of unique to a vacation spot - and they had a coupon drawing thingy, where they spin the barrel and you pick out a piece of paper with a discount. I got the best discount! Gasps from the salewomen! Adoration! A bigger gift for Mom! (I hope it's not the only time I get lucky here, ba-dum-dum!)

• Oh, and a language thing: Aloha (uh-LO-hah!) means hello, goodbye, love and lots of other things. Mahalo (mah-HAH-lo) apparently means thank you. So do you think there's ever one of those moments where people go: "Mahalo!" "No, maha-LO!" (You know: "Thank you." "No, thank YOU!") Hmm...

OK, a bit of relaxation, then back to the T-shirt place and then it may be time, as my buddy George says, to get my gun off.

And then, perhaps, the nightclub. Or back to the sports bar when there's more people there than just five guys drinking and watching the local news.

On to the next part!