Friday, December 30, 2022

Friday 5 for December 30: Out with the old

This is the last Friday 5 for 2022. Questions are from its usual source.

1. Among people with whom you are not personally acquainted, who most made you laugh in 2022?

The people who made me laugh in a cynical way were local government officials who were busted for various crimes.

I had to laugh at former State Senator Kalani English, once the Senate Majority Floor Leader, who tried to hide a $6000 check of illegal bribe money. It was found under the rug of a vehicle he was riding in when busted by law enforcement. It was part of a federal wire fraud investigation.

Today English is serving a 40 month sentence in the federal slammer for taking bribes from a lobbyist to manipulate sewer legislation. It was so criminal that this became funny in a sick, warped way. Shit happens.

English was not the only one. Former State Representative Ty Cullen was busted on similar charges.

We have the former Honolulu Police Chief serving time in the federal slammer for numerous crimes. His wife, a former deputy prosecutor is also doing time in federal prison for a number of crimes including stealing from a trust fund, her grandmother and framing another relative. There was also a cover up involved between the two and other officers in the police department at the time of her husband's tenure.

Three former City and County of Honolulu officials were arrested by the FBI for misuse of city funds to pay for a severance to the convicted police chief mentioned above. Their trials are upcoming.

This past election year saw two state legislators arrested for D.U.I. Their charges were dropped by the court for various reasons. The voters were not as forgiving. Both lost their re-election bids.

Hawaii is full of corruption that go back many years and decades. I am sure the comedy of corruption will continue in Hawaii for years to come. We're just like a banana republic.

2. Among people with whom you are not personally acquainted, who most inspired you in 2022?

Nobody I can think of.

3. What were your food discoveries in 2022?

I tend to eat the same things day in and out. This is due to the high cost of living in Hawaii. Because fuel, energy and shipping prices have spiked up since 2020, I don't have the income to eat at fancy places or buy exotic grocery foods. The price of groceries and dining out have increased.

That said, probably the only new foods I tried is when my seasonal employer took us out for lunch one day at a high end restaurant I never been to before. I had some fancy burger and exotic dessert. Can't remember what they're called. See pictures below.

4.What were your music discoveries in 2022?

The top ten artists that I discovered and played for the first time this year are the following:

Rank & ArtistMost Played TrackCount
1. CannonsHurricane331
2. CucoSitting at the Corner84
3. Stephen SanchezUntil I Found You48
4. Duke & JonesJiggle Jiggle (It Folds)38
5. RammsteinZick Zack33
6. Envy of NoneNever Said I Love You28
7. Cazzi OpeiaI Can't Get Enough21
8. LiamooBluffin21
9. Jay PhungStep By Step19
10. BrimCalifornia Gold16

Data pulled from my Last.FM profile as of December 30, 2022.

5. Where will you be when the clock strikes midnight on January 1?

I am 99.999% sure I will be at home with Lisa listening to the crazy and reckless people setting off legal and illegal fireworks.

Friday, December 23, 2022

Friday 5 for December 23: On the dotted line

The following questions are from Scrivener's weekly Friday 5 blog.

1. What did you last put your signature on?

Hand drawn e-signature on a prescription pick up this week.

2. How legible is your signature?

With cursive handwriting, it is fairly easy to read and make out my first and last name. Sometimes I rush through it, other times I take my time. More and more I am doing less signatures on paper and more with electronic media which means funky block letters or just typing it in... or cut and paste a scanned handwritten copy. Whatever.

3. How has your signature changed over time?

Went from mostly signed on paper to electronic signature in recent years.

4. When did you last initial something?

Right now: MAC

5. Is there a story behind your given name, or is it just a name?

My first name is from my Dad. My sir name is a result of a screw up by the territorial government of Hawaii from when my paternal grandfather arrived off a boat from China. That bureaucratic mistake has carried down to 4 generations. I was screwed by the government before I was born!

The song link below has just about nothing to do with this blog entry.

Friday, December 16, 2022

Friday 5 for December 16: Gimme some sugar

Aha... another Friday 5,,, this one on sugar sweet... which can be detrimental to our health. But let's go... Questions courtesy of Scrivener....

1. How much of a sweet tooth do you have?

A big one. I like chocolate and most sweet tasting dessert type foods. The good thing is that all the good ones are expensive, which means I rarely indulge and that is good for my health. No one wants to get diabetes. 

2. What sweet dishes do you prefer at breakfast?

  • Waffles with maple syrup, butter whipped cream and a cherry on top.
  • French toast with maple syrup, butter and whipped cream. Ditto for pancakes.

3. What have you recently gotten a sweet deal on?

Last year during Black Friday I got not one, but two Amazon Echo balls... In the year that I have owned them, they've been a mixed bag of information, entertainment, music and stupidity. Honestly, Alexa is not as smart as Amazon makes it out to be unless you want to dish out more cash to make purchases. 

Amazon wrongly thought that people would use Echo devices to make more purchases at Amazon and through other services that they could get a revenue stream from. In the end they were wrong, and the Alexa service will probably lose up to $10 billion this year. Most people use their devices just to get the news, weather, ask trivial questions, play a few free games or listen to music. 

And then there are still those privacy issues that you have to take care of once you get a device.

4. What are some good songs with the word “sweet” in the title or lyrics?

  • Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) - Eurythmics
  • Sweet Home Alabama - Lynyrd Skynyrd
  • Sweet Talkin' Woman - Electric Light Orchestra
  • Sweet Nothins' - Brenda Lee
  • Ain't She Sweet - The Beatles
  • My Sweet Lord - George Harrison (the lawyers for The Chiffons loved this song)
  • Sweet Emotion - Aerosmith
  • Sweet City Woman - The Stampeders
  • Sweet and Innocent -  Donny Osmond
  • Sweet Child O' Mine - Guns N Roses
  • How Sweet It Is - Marvin Gaye or James Taylor
There's probably more from the 1980s, 90s, 21st century... 

5. What evidence might someone present to prove you are a sweet person?

Since I became a whole lot older, I am generally more grumpy and pessimistic. Sweetness is not me unless it is chocolate, free money or a good pop-rock song.

Sunday, December 11, 2022

When the Friday 5 is the Friday 10

It's catch-up time for at least two cycles... Friday 5....

Friday 5 for December 9: Trivial Pursuit

1. What’s something you’re into that others don’t get?

2. What’s something you’ve wanted to get into?

Getting back into developing my own black and white film and making prints from that. Haven't done it since college. Cost and lack of space is too prohibitive.

3. What are you less into than you once were?

I stopped buying vinyl records. I ran out of space and in the last 3 years the price of vinyl records have significantly increased making purchases out of my budget range. I have to be satisfied with the 600+ record albums I already own and a couple hundred 45s. I had to severely cut back my music collection of records, CDs and tapes back in 2016. 😐

4. What difficult-to-find item would you really like to get your hands on?

A copy of "Beach Rock" 45 rpm record on SeaWest Records by the rock group Blue Finn. I think that was their only record and it has never been issued to a digital format as far as I know. I have a copy but someone in my family severely played it too many times and made a scratchy mess out of the recording. Ugh!

5. What is the standard attire for people into whatever you’re into? If there is none, what would be the appropriate dress?

Casual. I am not a dress up type of person and I get along best with people who are casually dressed.

Friday 5 for December 2: Seconds

1. When did someone last offer you a second chance?

God. I got a second chance on life in late 2015.

2. For how many seconds can you hold your breath?

I like breathing. I don't hold my breath for anything.

3. What movie was better on second viewing?

Generally when I don't like a movie on first viewing, I never bother to give it a second chance. I can't think of anything recent or from the past that I gave a second chance to watch again.

4. What’s your second-favorite song by your second-favorite musician?

Currently, "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" by Elton John.

5. When did you most recently have to redo something because you were careless or sloppy?

I hate redoing anything. It is like one step forward and three steps back! Ugh.... most recently some elements of the Assistance League of Hawaii Newsletter.