Entries Tagged as 'Making Headlines'

STRIKE! Perhaps this will send a message…

… if enough people participate.  You might be surprised at how many people/sites that will be participating.  Here is the scoop:

January 18th is going to be amazing. Sites are striking in all different ways, but they are united by this: do the biggest thing you possibly can, and drive contacts to Congress. Put this on your site or automate it by putting this JS into your header, which will start the blackout at 8AM EST and end at 8PM EST.

Websites: How to Strike

  1. Black out your website for 12 hours with this page’s HTML, or by putting this Javascript into your site’s theme. Tucows is doing this and so is BoingBoing.
  2. Other people have made tools to strike. Some other ways to strike:
  3. Don’t be silent that day. Tweet all day from your official company account (#SOPASTRIKE) and share news on sites like reddit. You will get much love in return from your users, and the bigger the action you do, the more love you will be feeling 🙂 – You can follow us on twitter for news as the strike gets closer. If you are really feeling shy, you can blackout your site logo / add STOP SOPA messages wherever you can.

Everyone: Prepare to Strike

  1. If you have a Twitter account, tweet about the #SOPASTRIKE and ask your followers to get ready. You can follow us on twitter for news as the strike gets closer. Go to Blackout SOPA to add ‘STOP SOPA’ to your Twitter image.
  2. Post this SOPA Strike page to your Facebook account by clicking here.
  3. Get ready for January 18th! Email and tweet at your friends, tell them to tell everyone about the strike. When the day comes, call Congress, tweet like crazy (#SOPASTRIKE), and help the strike appear everywhere!

On Jan 24th, Congress will vote to pass internet censorship in the Senate, even though the vast majority of Americans are opposed. We need to kill the bill – PIPA in the Senate and SOPA in the House – to protect our rights to free speech, privacy, and prosperity. We need internet companies to follow Reddit’s lead and stand up for the web, as we internet users are doing every day.

Um, that’s tomorrow gang.  So, if your favorite site is down, now you know why!  Follow the links and send your protests!  Tell Congress NOT to mess with OUR Internet!   

*~* Happy Birthday to Twitter.com! *~*

Twitter BirdThis is just a short little note to say, “Happy 5th Birthday!” to Twitter. My goodness time goes by quickly, especially when you’re having fun! You’ve got to love the little bird that has connected so many of us across so many countries, in so many ways, and for so many reasons! A huge “Mahalo!” from Homespun Honolulu and @HonoluluSprite!

If you’re on the fly (no pun intended, or maybe it is intended), drop a Tweet for others to know what’s got you going.  Others can look it up in more detail if they want or need to. Drop a quick line to complain or rave about happenings, or your favorite business or restaurant. Provide other tweeters with a link, if you so choose. Share a quick announcement. Set your blog up to map over to Twitter. Then set Twitter up to map over to Facebook. I did! Saves me time, lets me share, makes me happy!

Happy Birthday little bluebird and thanks for singing my songs!

Get to Blaisdell before 5 PM today!

There’s still time to sign up for the Great Aloha Run!

Geoffrey Sewell, MD, President & Executive Medical Director and a Kaiser Vice President whose name I have forgotten.

Get down to the Sports, Health, & Fitness Expo!  It’s a lot of fun and a great community event!

The lead sponsor once again this year is Kaiser Permanente Hawaii.  If you’re a Kaiser patient, make your medical provider proud and come share in the fun and the ongoing efforts to support our community.

Carol Kai was there and she continues to make this a huge part of her life.  There are many corporate sponsors of this event and there are a lot of people who can’t wait to take part in the annual event that the combined effort of all these corporate sponsors has helped to make possible!

Zumba fans can’t wait ’til the doors open to get started on sharing their fitness!

Trying to contain the community’s excitement as GAR approaches is difficult.  The Expo couldn’t even get started without a Zumba crew entertaining onlookers before the doors even opened on Friday afternoon.

Walk, run, skip, just get down there and join in the fun!   According to Carol Kai, there were over 26,000 people signed up for the run before the Expo started.  Be sure to watch the news on Monday evening to hear the total participant count!

After the run, which was wonderful, as always, but way too hot!!! One of the commenters asked if I had any more pics of the Zumba activities going on at the Expo so I am posting what I do have, just for fun.  It was all over way too fast.Zumba goes on  until the blessing and the opening of the doors.Then it moved from outside to inside!

Zumba in full swing at the Expo!

Unfortunately, that’s all I have in the way of Zumba pics. Sorry, Shannon, I thought I had more than this.  Now we have to wait another whole year!  Shucks!

Presidential Proclamation!

King Kamehameha statue draped with leisI have to admit to being stunned.  I shouldn’t have been since Barack’s roots are here, but I have to admit it — I was speechless (for all of about 3 seconds).

Just in case you missed it, I am more than happy to share it with everyone here!  I missed it when it first came out.  I heard about it through word-of-mouth from about three or four different sources, including the morning news, and then I had no problem spreading it around! This is kind of how the conversations went:

“Did you hear about the President’s proclamation?”

“What proclamation?” was the usual, wide-eyed response.  I think the expectation was that there was something new about the economic drama or some new find or fix for the oil spill — since those have been the buzz topics taking over the news recently.

“He said the country should recognize King Kamehameha Day!”

“No way!?!”

“Isn’t that something?” was my usual reply with a big grin.

Still don’t believe me?  Here it is, verbatim, from the White House website:

The White House, Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release

June 10, 2010

Presidential Proclamation–King Kamehameha Day

Two hundred years ago, King Kamehameha the Great brought the Hawaiian Islands together under a unified government.  His courage and leadership earned him a legacy as the “Napoleon of the Pacific,” and today his humanity is preserved in Ke Kanawai Mamalahoe, or “the Law of the Splintered Paddle.”  This law protects civilians in times of war and remains enshrined in Hawaii’s constitution as “a unique and living symbol of the State’s concern for public safety.”

On this bicentennial King Kamehameha Day, we celebrate the history and heritage of the Aloha State, which has immeasurably enriched our national life and culture.  The Hawaiian narrative is one of both profound triumph and, sadly, deep injustice.  It is the story of Native Hawaiians oppressed by crippling disease, aborted treaties, and the eventual conquest of their sovereign kingdom.  These grim milestones remind us of an unjust time in our history, as well as the many pitfalls in our Nation’s long and difficult journey to perfect itself.  Yet, through the peaks and valleys of our American story, Hawaii’s steadfast sense of community and mutual support shows the progress that results when we are united in a spirit of limitless possibility.

In the decades since their persecution, Native Hawaiians have remained resilient.  They are part of the diverse people of Hawaii who, as children of pioneers and immigrants from around the world, carry on the unique cultures and traditions of their forebears.  As Americans, we can all admire these traits, as well as the raw natural beauty of the islands themselves.  Truly, the Aloha Spirit of Hawaii echoes the American Spirit, representing the opportunities we all have to grow and learn from one another as we carry our Nation toward a brighter day.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 11, 2010, as King Kamehameha Day.  I call upon all Americans to celebrate the rich heritage of Hawaii with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this tenth day of June, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.


I don’t need to say anything; it speaks for itself.  The only thing that comes to mind is to say to the President, “Mahalo, bruddah!”

Historic Events Repeating Themselves

King Lunalilo’s Tomb

King Lunalilo’s tomb was blessed with new kahili a few weeks ago as part of the King’s 175th birthday.  These kahili were beautiful new additions to replace the old ones that were not in the greatest of shape after all of these years.

Kamehameha Maertens

Apparently the making of the new kahili was orchestrated by Paulette Nohealani Kahalepuna which says to me that these kahili were not only crafted of feathers but that they were done correctly, carefully, and beautifully.

The gentleman pictured here on the left is Kamehameha Maertens.  He is quite familiar with the kahili in King Lunalilo’s tomb.  Back in 1938 an article in the Honolulu Star-Bulletin listed him as one of the kahili bearers back then. Mr. Maertens’ grandson took him to the new kahili event to celebrate Lunalilo’s 175th birthday on January 31st at the King’s tomb on the grounds of Kawaiaha’o Church.

That, in my opinion, is certainly something worth talking about — a man revisits a part of history that he himself was a part of.  I’m not sure how many of us will be around long enough to see history repeat itself or to say we actually had a hand in it!

In the Star-Bulletin article, Kamehameha Maertens was listed incorrectly as a member of the Royal Order of Kamehameha.  His first name may have been the reason for the reporter’s confusion but he was certainly an important part of the royal procession paying tribute to the memory of a man who was once a very popular monarch.

After all of those years gone by, I can’t help but wonder if he ever dreamed that his own grandchild would push for the preservation of the Hawaiian culture through the protection, perpetuation, and restoration of its treasured language.  In case you can’t get into Facebook, here’s the meat of what’s on the other end of this link:

“After the unlawful overthrow of the Hawaiian government by white supremacists, four generations of Hawaiian people endured cultural genocide beginning in 1896 when the Hawaiian language was banned as a medium of public instruction. 30+ years have passed since the 1978 Hawai’i State Constitution nominally restored Hawaiian as an official language along with English, yet speakers of Hawaiian cannot vote using their language. Without public information readily available in Hawaiian, the current policy of English-only community services is indeed tantamount to ethnic cleansing! Will you please join with us to implement Hawai’i’s Official Languages Act to put this unfortunate era of cultural genocide against Hawaiian speaking people behind us for good?”

I’ve talked about this before and, while it is a touchy subject, most people will agree that it is a terrible thing to cut off a people from their own language.  It is a wretched behavior for a country claiming to be “civilized.”  Make no mistake about it, I’m an American and proud of it, but there are times when I just don’t know what we were thinking!  But I digress.

There are quite a few of us who missed the Hawaiian-language boat in school and are now trying to learn.  This is where Mr. Maertens’ grandson comes in.  Michael Malulani Odegaard is trying to help us do just that.  Some students are doing better than others.  I have to admit that life, as usual, gets in the way of that too.  Mahalo, Kumu, for all you do and for your infinite patience!

For those of you looking to learn ‘olelo Hawai’i or looking to brush up on your skills a little, there are small classes available on Wednesday evenings from 6:00 to 8:00 PM and Thursday evenings from 5:30 to 7:00 PM.  Follow this link for more information about the Wednesday evening class and for contact information in case you have questions.

For those who try to call it a dead language, I’m very happy to let you know that you are sadly mistaken!  It’s alive and well and getting stronger every day!

Comments left on Facebook will be copied and shared here on Homespun Honolulu so everyone will be able to listen to your thoughts and input.

Staying Far from the Shoreline

While listening to the tsunami warnings this morning and the boat harbors asking boat owners to move their vessels out into deeper water, I couldn’t help but think about “my boat.”  What happens to the Falls of Clyde when a threat like this one comes over the Civil Defense and other warning systems?

Relatively recently I received an email message about the Falls of Clyde with this YouTube video.  I cried.  Of course.  I almost started again while making sure this link worked.  The video kind of shows what many people wanted to have happen to the Falls before the Friends of the Falls of Clyde stepped up to stop it.

I’ve been thinking about sharing this here but there is nothing like the threat of a tidal wave to get someone to their keyboard.  Still listening to the news and all of the closed City parks, shopping malls, and golf courses, etc., I’m more worried about the sea vessels getting bashed.

Hmmm… a tsunami moves at the speed of a jet.  It’s scheduled to hit the Big Island of Hawai’i at about 11:05 this morning, February 27, 2010, and the rest of the islands in succession after that.  Hilo Bay is going to be the lucky recipient of this “event.”

Standing by and worrying about how it will all pan out.

Updated 03/01/2010 – No impact.  Civil Defense did a good job.  Local media stayed on top of the crisis and kept us informed from start to finish.  No panic.  There was just a lot of people doing what they felt needed to be done.

Now that Hawai’i is in the clear, I can’t help but think about poor Chile.  Google offers some ways to help if you can.

Politics and Vog are Equally Cloudy

I can’t help but be confused when I listen to and watch some of the strange things that our Country’s administrators, or potential administrators, are doing and saying.  Forgive me but I just have to shake my head at some of this stuff.

Who Makes These Rules? 

My indignation all started just before New Years when a potential walking disaster boarded an airplane on one of our airlines.  It’s safe to say that many of us were left wondering how that happened.

Howard Dicus has always seemed to have a great amount of aloha for airplanes and the airlines.  I love his ability to always put an intelligent yet un-lofty spin on things.  This article about Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab (the aforementioned walking disaster) was no exception.

I wrote this post a couple of years ago and at the end of it you can see that I really do have a great respect and admiration for our Department of Homeland Security but, who is this woman?!? Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano, said,

“…putting him on the list required specific derogatory information that was not available.”

What the *BLEEP*?!?  Hello?!?  Woman, information like you received has got to be enough to issue at least a warning and put this person on the watch list, or something!  Were you on vacation in September, 2001?  One would like to think that it is a better thing to er on the side of security overkill!  Don’t ya think? We can stop Joan Rivers from boarding a plane, but not a potential loose cannon?  Oh, wait, that was a Costa Rican airport.  Sigh.

Oh well, I guess that the Department of Homeland Security will not be hiring me anytime soon — scratch that Federal job!

This next news story made me wonder.  Sarah Palin must like the camera.  Instead of running for office, she is moving from politics to the media.  I’m sure she’ll be very good at this job with Fox and I’m actually looking forward to seeing what she does with it!  I guess that takes her out of the Presidential pool.  Doesn’t it?

It was not my intention to give so much link love to Yahoo! but they just happened to have some good write-ups that helped me make my points. Thanks, Yahoo!, for the good content.

Things are equally foggy voggy here at home.  On Sunday we couldn’t really tell if we had rain clouds, vog, or a little bit of both.  It has been that way for quite a while as you will see below.

Last, and probably the least of my cloudy curiosity, I have to share this picture and warn readers that what follows is purely speculation on my part.  Hey, I’m a blogger who must have pictures and this one was worth a thousand words!  (Okay, so maybe it only gets about a hundred words.)

Low flying helicopter obviously looking for… something.

Keep in mind that my paranoid brain was working overtime.  Taken on the west side of O’ahu, this picture shows some rather strange behavior going on several days before the First Family even arrived in Honolulu (yes, that thought did cross my mind).  It just seemed odd to me that a helicopter would hover so low to the ground (I was sitting in my car when I took this).  Looking for hit men?  Snipers?  Escapees?  Drug dealers?  The area was curiously void of homeless people so it got me thinking that maybe they cleared the area.  I don’t even know if that was a military ‘copter, there was too much vog as you can see.  It was just weird.

Maybe I need Sudafed to uncloud my brain.

The Great Aloha Run! February 15, 2010!

Great Aloha Run 2010The anticipation is greater than Heinz ketchup!  This is yet another event that I wait for every year.  Perhaps the greatest community event in Honolulu!  Okay, so I’m biased.

Yes, I know the Honolulu Marathon really is “all that,” in many ways, but the Great Aloha Run seems to be more about community involvement and sharing the aloha that we all hold so dear.

Come to think of it, there seems to be a lot more visitors for the Honolulu Marathon than there are for the Great Aloha Run.  Does the Great Aloha Run have visitors from elsewhere?  Oh yeah!  Last year we had participants join us from various places around the continental U.S. and even some from Canada.

Every year there are 20,000+ participants in this event and they are walking, running, and just plain having a good time with their families and friends.

POG (Passion Orange Guava)Meadow Gold’s Lani Moo

Even the events that kick off the event are full of fun.  Meadow Gold saw to that this year.  On Fort Street in downtown Honolulu both Lani Moo and POG (Passion Orange Guava) were there to add a little to the festivities.

Kaiser tent for kick off of Great Aloha Run events.

There are a lot of sponsors but this year, the Title Sponsor is Kaiser Permanente.  I suppose that’s a bit more fitting than Hawaiian Telcom, being that the Great Aloha Run does give a heck of a strong push for health and fitness.

If you haven’t signed up yet, don’t worry, there’s still time!  You can get the registration form, fill it out and mail it in.  You can even wait for the Sports, Health & Fitness Expo (February 12, 13 & 14), the three days before the event, and register then!

Toys 4 Tots: an Event Like No Other!

There is no event quite like this one to light a fire under me to start “talking” again.  I miss writing, I miss talking, and I so miss sharing!  We’ll talk about the New Year and early resolutions in a bit.  Right now, let’s talk about Christmas and one of the landmark events that signal that it is upon us.

US Marines truck with Street Bikers United banner.

Street Bikers United Hawaii joined forces with the United States Marine Corps Reserve, just as they do every year.  The fun part is that there are always new surprises and fun things to see.

A big bear attached to the front of a big truck.

Every year I wait for this event, just because.

Phenomenons like this one happen across the country.  Hawai’i is not the only State to see this happen.  Yes, I call it a phenomenon because our bikers just show up with little provocation.  I’m obviously not the only one who looks forward to this!

There is just something so delightful about a bunch of toy-carting bikers that is enough to make people’s hearts all warm and fuzzy.  Of course that’s after they’re done scratching their heads.

It’s an awesome sight; let me show you!

Since I need to get rid of my wheels (since I have four instead of only 2) before I venture out with my camera, I find a safe spot to get rid of them and go the rest of the way on foot to Magic Island where the event begins.

Santa's a biker too!

Many bikers get close to Magic Island but some stop for breakfast before continuing — including Santa and some of his elves.

Bikes and participants begin to arrive.

When I first got there the parking lot was already starting to fill up.

Park continues to fill up.

It was amazing to watch the lot fill up and get more and more crowded.  Who would have thought that there were even that many bikes on Oahu?

Still getting more and more bikes.

The lot was filling with more bikes, more Santas, more toys, and more enthusiasm.  When all was said and done, there were over 6,500 bikes!

Still getting fuller.

As they continued to file in, I kept thinking about just how perfect the weather was for a day like this.  It wasn’t too hot but the sun was out and being its usual bright self.   🙂

Directing the incoming flow of bikers.

It was a good thing that it wasn’t too hot because the volunteers directing the influx of bikers were being kept very busy!  The bikers dressed in Santa suits must have been baking up pretty nicely as well.

Bikes lined up waiting for the start of the parade through Waikiki. /></p> <p>Of course there were more bodies than bikes.  A lot of bikers had their ladies with them.</p> <p><img mce_tsrc=

There were more people than bikes because a lot of the bikers had their ladies with them.

Ralph and Wanda join the event!

Here is Ralph and Wanda — these two go everywhere together!  I was looking for them because I really don’t know anybody else personally.  I found them!  These two are inseparable and theirs is a heartwarming relationship to watch.

Biker tot with toys.

Here’s a dad with his little lady.  This cutie got a lot of attention from those of us with cameras — you can tell by the shadows off to the right.  You can also tell that she was a little embarrassed by all of the attention.

Biker with human-size bear passenger.

There were a variety of other kinds of passengers too!

Stuffed toys make great biker passengers. A penguin for a passenger.

All of these characters riding with these ferocious bikers. Terrible, terrible! 🙂

GEICO staff at the start of the run visit with bikers and pass out bandannas.

Here is a favorite group of characters!  GEICO was there walking around and handing out bandannas.  In a feeble attempt to score a gecko scarf I said, “I don’t have a bike but my car is GEICO-insured!”

“It’s all good!” was the response.  Hmmm, that was not so feeble after all.  I ended up with a couple of crisply-folded bandannas tucked in at my waist — I was a walking advertisement!  Trust me, they didn’t mind.

The run/parade was supposed to start at 10:00 am but at 10:30 bikers were still filing into the park.

Marines loading boxes with toys from bikers.

At the ultimate destination, Kapiolani Community College, the Marines collected the cargo from the bikers and still the smiles of participants and spectators continued to appear on faces old and young.

Santa's sleigh with the Grinch with his hands tied.

Here, Santa had the Grinch all tied up!

Biker taking toy to drop location. The Grinch.

This Grinch was on the loose.

Lions, tigers, and bears, oh my!

The crowd gathered at Kapiolani Community College.

At the end of the line the bikes are more spread out so you can see all of the polishing that went on before this event.

Reindeer motorcycle.

You can also see a few more oddities that we missed at the beginning of all this.  I’m guessing those are moose antlers but they do quite nicely as reindeer antlers.  It’s Christmas time and these “reindeer” can fly!  As always, they should fly safely.

Sea of bikes at Kapiolani Community College.

Now that I’ve shared all of that, I have to say how happy I am to be sharing this fun event with everyone and I’m sorry that I have not been writing and sharing more recently.  The fire has been lit — thanks to Street Bikers United and our Marines!  I’m starting early with my resolutions.  I hereby resolve to post more often and try not to let a down time like this happen again!

I’ve got two weeks to whip this baby into shape!  

Kawaiaha’o Church Finds Treasure

Kawaiahao Church at the end of the rainbow

That’s Kawaiaha’o Church at the end of the rainbow in this photo.  It’s all about the angle. It might be Queen’s hospital or Honolulu Hale  at the end of that rainbow, if you were coming from a different direction, but this worked for me! It worked even better when this story about finding the iwi (bones) hit the news.  This happens so very often when new construction happens.  My initial comment when I heard about this  was, “tell me a better place to have something like this happen?!?”  This is on the Church grounds.  They have indeed found treasure at the end of that rainbow! (Just for recognition’s sake, I have included a photo of Kawaiaha’o Church below that was taken from the angle that people are most accustomed to seeing.)

Most common view of Kawaiaha’o Church

Hawaiians have always believed that the power or mana of a person, their spiritual essence as it were, is in their bones (iwi).  Many Hawaiians still hold fast to this belief and many others, whether they believe it or not, recognize and respect it as a valuable part of our culture.  We will revisit this topic in a future post because I want to learn and share more about it.  I think it will help to explain some things that have puzzled me, and probably some things that have puzzled others.

Even if the traditional Hawaiian view of the significance of the iwi (bones) is not their view, most local people will take a step back, respect the significance of findings such as this, and send everything to a screeching halt!  I applaud the deference shown by our government offices and the businesses that honor this tradition.

Then I saw this and was aghast!  It was okay when they were widening Queen Street and relocated the remains of many.  Nobody complained then.  If they did, I never heard about it, or it escaped me completely.

Memorial stone commemorating unmarked graves at Kawaiaha’o ChurchI only know this grave stone that sits on the corner of the church property, at the intersection of Punchbowl and Queen Streets, that carries an inscription that reads:

“In memory of our beloved unknown friends of yesteryears found in unmarked graves during the excavation of Queen Street.  These 102 beloved souls are committed unto Almighty God, our Heavenly Father, and their remains tenderly laid to rest in peace in this place.”  November 20, 1988

A little church trying to enhance its ability to help and educate the community is now the target of this ugly publicity?  An article I read said that the remains of the family in question were not touched.  I’m not a party to any of this and I do not know all the details but, if this is the case and there was no damage done, all I can say is,Auwe!

For all of the times that something like this has happened, I can’t think of a better situation.  The families can rest assured that this matter will be handled with the greatest of care.  My heart goes out to this little church and its parishioners.  This is quite a quandary but I know that the iwi will be given the full focus and attention of the leaders and members of this historic institution.

Sending heartfelt wishes for a peaceful resolution and for God’s blessings for Kawaiaha’o Church and the treasured iwi entrusted to their loving care!