Paradise Tarnished

Reward! for scumbag crackhead who stole our moped!

Reward for any information and prosecution of the crackhead who stole one of our mopeds on Christmas night.  Yes, Christmas night, you scumbag!  I hope you had a grand time cutting off the industrial strength chain around the rear tire.  The man we bought the bike from tried to cut it with a torch for 45 minutes before giving up.

I hope this was a snatch and grab and you don’t come back for the other moped.  We’re paranoid now and keep moving it to a “safer” location, but I guess if you want it bad enough, you and you buddy will return and lift it into the back of your pickup.

I’m offering a  reward, the amount of which is random.  I’ll be posting it on Craigslist for your friends to see.  If they’re crackheads like you, the price will be more attractive than that of your friendship.  If they’re half-way decent people, their curiosity about where you got a new bike will be amply rewarded.   And if someone was stupid enough to buy it from you without paperwork, then God help the Empire.

Have a wonderful 2013, you worthless, filthy animal.  May you get what you deserve.

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It’s Sad That We Need a Tragedy to Remind Us of What Is Important

Tragedy after tragedy reminds us of what is important

The tragic news from Sandy Hook Elementary has galvanized the nation in support of dozens of grieving families. Blame will be cast and speeches made, urging reforms on gun ownership and mental health treatments. We can only speculate on whether our government takes action on any promises.  It’s easy to talk when tragedy overcomes our nation.

I’m at an age that I can look back at several tragedies in American history.

November 22, 1963 

A Friday. School officials let us out early. Only after we arrived home did we learn an assassin had taken the life of our president, JFK. Before the birth of CNN and FoxNew and a hundred other cable stations, we had three local stations. All weekend, our family was glued to the television, watching NBC’s coverage of the death of John Fitzgerald Kennedy. I was eight years old.

January 28, 1986

I watched in horror and a sick fascination as the Challenger exploded over and over and over again, as we tried to make sense of a senseless act. I watched the launch because of the novelty of having a teacher on board. If not for this anomaly, coverage wouldn’t have taken place.

I was home on maternity leave. My daughter was six days old.

October 14-16, 1987 

The nation was glued to the developing story of Jessica McClure, an eighteen-month old girl who fell down a well. It took rescuers fifty-eight hours to pull her out alive. I was six-months pregnant with my son.

September 11, 2001

A man I worked with received a call from his wife, and he informed us of the hit on the first tower. We listened in horror on the radio as the plane flew into the second tower. I heard Jim Miklaszewski report live from the Pentagon as the third plane slammed into it. Someone turned on the television in the cafeteria, and we watched as both towers collapsed. Numb, the events too surreal to comprehend, we tried to stay focused on work. I was to attend a five-year anniversary dinner for my investment club that night. Instead, I spent the afternoon scrambling for emails and phone numbers (this was before yahoo groups) to tell the members the easiest decision I’d ever had to make: Go home to your families.

The World Trade Centers before the tragedy of their destruction.

Columbine, Waco, Oklahoma City and now Newtown, CT. The names run together in a sea of senselessness and grief.

It’s sad that we need a tragedy to remind of us of what is important – our families. Your character’s angst isn’t important. Deadlines can wait. Forget the little things that keep you apart from the ones you love. Pick up the phone, email a note, Skype, do whatever it takes to breach that gulf. Hug them, hold them, show them how much you love them. Do you want to go to bed tomorrow with their names on a list circulating the globe?

Hug your family today. Never forget what is truly important.





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Kukaniloko Birth Stones – “To Anchor the Cry From Within”

Kukaniloko Birth Stones

Last week, Luke and I visited another “spot on the map”, Kukaniloko, the sacred birth stones of Oahu.  We’ve since found out many locals have not visited this spot although it is one of the most sacred places in Hawaii.

For over 800 years, the ancient royals gave birth on the stones, ensuring high regard for the newborns. The chiefs witnessed the birth and ceremonially cut the umbilical cord then pledged their support to the newborn.

No one else was at the spot when we arrived at the small parking area just off Route 80, directly opposite Whitmore Avenue.  If we hadn’t seen the marker on our map, we would have thought we were driving into a pineapple field.  We drove past the drive and had to double back.  A very worn, small King Kamehameha marker on the north side of the drive directed us in.

The parking lot was dirt, the iron-rich red soil common in the area.  It had rained earlier, so we stepped carefully.

The path to the grove of eucalyptus trees that house the birthing stones is about 300 yards long.  It may have been my imagination, but I swear I cold feel the echoes of labor pains as I walked it.  How many royal mothers were carried over this same path, their bodies twisted in labor as their child struggled to be born?

Trade winds shook tree leaves as we walked among the stones.  Small puddles of rainwater lay in the indentations carved by the feet of the birth retainers, who stood on the stones as they braced the mother.

Kukaniloko Birth Stones

A perimeter of stones circled the main area, a warning to keep out strangers.  We hardly spoke, the history of Kukaniloko pressed down on us.

Kukaniloko Birth Stones left me in awe

Few places I’ve visited that have left me with a profound sense of awe and history.  Monument Rocks, Kansas; South Point on Big Island; and Kukaniloko on Oahu.  They’ve left an indelible impression.

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