Dolphins Protect Their Snouts With Sponges

dolphin gang

The bottom of this story is the part that sort of made me pause…where it says young males gang together and chase sexually ready females and then refers to it as “herding females’ …does that strike anyone else as wrong? Maybe we should enact some laws to protect these poor dolphin gals….?

Dolphins Protect Their Snouts With Sponges – Yahoo! News

Hawaii Mind Body Spirit Expo…Kooks are Us


Massage therapy, multi level marketing, and spiritual coaching. It wasn’t exactly what I had in mind when I went to the Hawaii Convention Center today for the Body Mind Spirit Expo.

I should of expected what it was, a bunch of new age multi level marketing strategists, Japanese tarot card readers, and nutcase
guru types. Instead I had gone with the hope of attending some exciting lectures about alternative healing in a western context. I was hoping to encounter complimentary practitioners and modern perspectives on the viability of holistic methods. Not to be. Instead there was (and I’m not joking) Rosemary the Celtic Lady (international psychic medium) Linda Drake (Intuitive Past Life Healer) Limu, the new superfood, and Psycyic Aura Therapy.

While I didn’t attend all the presentationss, my first lecture of the day was the most memorable. I still can’t get rid of the smell. It was Siddhartha Malone, the self proclaimed graduate of the school of hard knocks explaining his success at passing lifes many tests. I was annoyed by his continued request to close our eyes…his words here “we have our eyes open all the time, now is a good time to let them rest” I do that at night when I sleep. Thanks. While he seemed like a very nice man, I wasn’t overly impressed by the following story as a motivational tool. “When I first became homeless, I refused to eat garbage, and then I found a bag full of quarters so that I wouldn’t have to.” Profound. while he never explained how a homeless New York kid got involved with a Cherokee Indian Shaman he did ask all of us to hold out our hands and that’s when he sprayed what smelled and looked like the substance barbers sanitize their combs in on all of us. He said it was his secret potion. I hope it wasn’t anthrax. Even after a huge bike ride and a shower the smell still won’t get off me.

My next lecture was from Laurie Grant, the Instant Kahuna. She explained that Hawaiian Legend says that a fair headed woman would take a leadership role in the Kahuna Tradition. Apparently, since she is a blond white woman, it must be her. She claimed to be able to heal instantly and that she rediscovered this ancient Hawaiian ability in 2000. I got lost in her rap about chakras. Apparently she has rediscovered some Ayurevedic terminology too. Maybe the Indians have a legend about a fair haired woman too.

Ann O’Brien’s lecture on manifesting your creative goals was the most enjoyable to me. Okay, I admit it, I fell asleep during the meditation and had a dream about the woman I love. When I woke up everyone was clapping. At first I thought they were clapping for me.

My final lecture of the day was the one I had the greatest hope for. During Fundamentals of Complimentary and Alternative Medicine , Dr. Hope Kellman ( I wonder if she is really a doctor), kept telling us about how her employers brand of soy product can ‘repair your DNA’. She said that whatever genetic problems you have inherited in your DNA can be repaired…and she saidthat if you eat too much chicken it can cause arthritis because it will make your hands look like Chicken Claws.I’m really not making this up. When she was asked a serious question she said that she had just written a ‘medical paper’ on that very thing and changed the subject without saying a word more.

The Expo continues tomorrow (Sunday) from 11 to 6. Admission for both days was $8. If you want to go…you can have my ticket, I won’t be going back. In all more than 50 lectures and 60 exhibitors on a wide variety of topics, including healing and rejuvenation, reincarnation, hands-on spiritual healers, massage therapists, chiropractors, astrologers, angelic counseling, guides and psychics, and looking and feeling great naturally using multi level marketed products that make amazing claims. ..

Small wonder that alternative practitioners and complimentary medicine proponents don’t get taken seriously. Although none of them were at this event that I saw, they tend to get thrown in with this crowd. Too bad.

Buying a Marine a Beer

marine beer

If anyone had told me when I got out of the Marines in 1994 that ten years later I would happily be living within a few miles of a Marine Base, I would have told them they were crazy.
When I got out, I wanted nothing to do with the government. This anarchist had served for four years, gotten promoted, done his time, and been honorably discharged as an E-5 or Seargent.
All that aside, I do live within about two miles of Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe. My neighbor across the street is a retired Marine. In fact, the place I went to get a beer and some dinner this evening is right outside the back gate of the base. I went there because Pinky’s is close, casual, reasonably priced, has a decent selection of beer, and pretty decent food. Basicly it’s a TGI Fridays but it’s called Pinky’s PuPu Grill and Cocktails. Nuff said on that.
I ponied up to the bar, ordered a big Longboard Lager, babyback ribs, and a baked potato and sat back staring at the big TV, just as the guy next to me was doing. He was a fresh faced young jarhead sitting in front of a big Newcastle Nut Brown Ale.
“How long you been in?” I asked.
“Is it that obvious?” he said, without a trace of humor despite his high and tight, clean shaved face, upright posture, and the base being about two blocks away.
“Nah, it’s just we’re sittin outside the back gate. Hell, I was in the Corps once…”
And that’s how I started talking to a damn nice fella named Justin that just wants to finish his enlistment, go back to Vegas, marry his sweetheart, and become a firefighter. Turns out he’s been in two and a half years and saw some of the fiercest fighting in Iraq and is scheduled to rotate to Afghanistan in January. He’s a grunt (o3-11) from Charlie Company. Charlie company led the frontal assault on Fallujah and is the same company that lost all those Marines in an H46.
It wasn’t a long conversation, but there were some choice tidbits. Like when I asked Justin about the Iraqis and he told me about giving his Oakley sunglasses to an Iraqi reservest he was working with. How the guy was overcome with the gift. “The Iraqis are some of the most generous and giving people in the world, ” he told me, “but that doesn’t mean I’m talking about them assholes we were fighting in Fallujah. ” Justin likes Iraqis. The guys he met in the Iraqi army were described variously by him as funny, grateful, and ‘on it.’ Not the usual thing we civilians get to hear about.
When I asked if he would stay in he laughed. “No way. I just got a whole boot platoon dropped to me and I have to teach them how to come back from Afghanastan alive. When I come back alive, I am getting out and becoming a fireman. I can’t wait to answer someones question of ‘what do you do?’ with ‘I’m a civilian.” Asked about the new guys coming in, this 21 year old guy says sagely “They’re good kids. They’ll never hear me say that, but they’re good kids. I’m like the Dad that nobody wants. I have to be tough on them so they can keep from getting killed.”
I asked him only a few questions about Iraq. He told me about being in the field without a shower for 45 days. His unit coming in with full beards and enough smell to mow down Mosul. He told me how being in the field was less complicated than being stuck in garrison where he has to shine his boots several times a day. He told me about ‘R and R’ that consisted of getting a shower and a chance to eat hot food for three days before going back in the field. He told me about the first beer he had in 10 months, when he got back and how it nearly knocked him on the floor. He was a nice guy. A good kid. A solid man. A guy doing the job he signed up for and glad to have the opportunity to be here in Hawaii.
So I bought him a beer. Semper Fidelis.

Biking Over The Pali

pali lookout

I biked 20 or so miles today. It was a beautiful day. There was a Mind, Body, and Spirit Expo at the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu. I’ll review that in another post. Probably the post above this one, meaning the next one I write.
Anyway, I’m feeling sort of proud of myself for biking. It’s not a huge distance, I know. It’s just that I have to cross the Koolau Mountains to get from where I live in Kailua to Honolulu and Waikiki. As I started out, I thought to myself…”Have I ever noticed anyone doing this?” I hadn’t. Tons of people have done it though. I mean. Why not? Well, actually, the Pali Highway is a busy road. There aren’t any shoulders over much of it. The grade is fairly moderate but doesn’t give you any breaks for five miles or so. Peaks out at 1200 ft which is just about where the above photo was taken. That’s looking down towards my little town of Kailua, by the way. The freakiest part of the ride is the tunnel where the shoulder is still narrow and on a raised “sidewalk” roughly two feet wide. Just enough room for the bike with heavy traffic speeding by on one side and a solid wall on the other. No room for error. Add to that the fist sized chunks of lava on the shoulder and the brush that completly obstructs the shoulder when you come out of the long tunnel and just before you go into the short tunnel. Super fukn dangerous. And that’s on the downgrade (Kailua Bound) the upgrade is almost worse.

Incidentally, that little gap between tunnels is where, in 1795, King Kamehameha forced the Oahu warriors to plunge to their deaths after a viscious series of skirmishes up the Nu’uanu Valley.

The Nu’uanu Valley itself is beautiful. Town bound from the tunnels you pass protected areas with wide mountain walls reaching heights of around 3200 feet. If it has been raining you see dozens of waterfalls. I missed the rain but still saw a few falls.

The rainforest portion of my ride was turning off of the Pali Highway and winding through the Old Pali Road. Bamboo forests, roadside waterfalls, ropeswings (careful of leptosprosis though), and grand old houses.

That’s enough for now…I’m going to go get a beer.