Total Pageviews

Monday, February 28, 2011


My three SIMPLE SOLUTION books provide a million of these factoids, but to bring you up to date:

1.  We all know this, but here is an article suggesting that you reduce your salt intake and, in general, eat less.  In fact, just about a month ago in this blog I said "Sleep More and Eat Less for Breakfast."  Read "How to Fix the Obesity Crisis."

Check it out to see if you are obese.  Simply, find your height and see which box crosses your weight. If you are in the orange, you are too fat, and if in the red, than morbidly so.  What then to do?  See your doctor.

2.  According to China experts, Hu Jintao (a civil engineer) was almost a decade ago selected to head the country to build up their undeveloped sectors, primarily in the West.  Well, the latest announcement is that China will build 45 new airports within the next five years at a cost of $230 billion.  It is reported that 130 of their 175 existing airports are already losing money, but the prime motivation for the new ones appears to be so that farmers can air freight their products to major cities and gain some needed revenue to balance the economy.  The next leader, Xi Zinping, apparently has a PhD in chemical engineering from Tsinghua University, but perhaps under somewhat dubious circumstances.  Yet, he has assumed crucial roles, including taking over Shanghai, and has yet to be implicated in any scandal.   So what will be his task?

3.  Barack, Hillary...say it isn't so.  I read where America is doing exactly what Colonel Gaddafi idiotically ranted about last week, that we were going to attack Libya.  Apparently, the USA is, indeed, getting ready to send arms for sure, but even, perhaps advisors (call them troops) into that country.  Incidentally, someone mentioned that I had misspelled Gaddafi's name.  Well, here is the current list of how his name is spelled

Moammar Gadhafi: CNN, MSNBC, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, AP:
Muammar Gaddafi:CNBC, BBC, Financial Times, Time Magazine, Reuters:
Muammar Gadaffi: London Times (usually):
Moammar Khadafy: NY Post, NY Daily News:
Muammar Qaddafi: Christian Science Monitor, FOX News:
Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi: New York Times

And you thought there were too many ways to write Al-Qaeda.

Add Oman to your list of countries now in jeopardy.

4.  Oh, oh...our country is beginning to get somewhat serious about geoengineering solutions to global climate change.  That's Stephen Salter's cloud maker to reflect sunlight.  Can the Blue Revolution be the ideal solution?  Actually, nearly three years ago I wrote a Huffington Post article entitled:

Geoengineering of Climate Change

Don't get too excited, as these scientists and I only advocate doing some exploratory research to develop strategies just in case something like The Venus Syndrome brings the potential for imminent doom.

5.  Have our college students shifted attitudes over the past 40 years?  Yes, and alarmingly so.  In 1969 only 42% of freshmen wanted to be very well-off financially, while today, 78% do.  In 1969, 85% of these students wanted to develop a meaningful philosophy of life, while only 48% do now.

Well, tomorow I begin my Spring adventure for Planet Earth and Humanity, plus possibly finalizing my tribute to Pearl.  Countries to be visited include Thailand, Singapore, Japan, China and South Korea.

The Dow Jones Industrials jumped up 96 to 12,226, with world markets also mostly increased.  Gold added a buck to $1411/toz and Brent crude is at $112/barrel, with NYMEX petroleum at $97/barrel.


Sunday, February 27, 2011


First, my Academy Award dinner, with Ann Hathaway:

While this is just a representative photo, I had a bit of St. Agnes cheese, bunch of boiled peanuts, small bag of Kettle Sea Salt & Vinegar Potato Chips and ten sprigs of watercress, with a truly outstanding 2004 Pahlmeyer Chardonnay, rated 93 by Parker and Wine Spectator, and, at a cost of $75, which means you would pay $200 in a typical restaurant.  The guilt I feel is that someone who participated in the recent Gourmet Philosophers discussion last week brought it to be drunk by the group, and we never got around to it.  My apologies, for I finished the whole bottle.  Some individual in the following photo should be credited:

Someday I'll provide some details about the Gourmet Philosophers, but not today.

And the primary 2011 Academy Award winners were  (my predictions in parentheses)...

Film:                             The King's Speech (The Social Network)
Director:                       Tom Hooper (David Fincher)
Actor:                           Colin Firth (Colin Firth)
Actress:                        Natalie Portman (Natalie Portman)
Supporting Actor:        Christian Bale (Christian Bale)
Supporting Actress:     Melissa Leo (Hailee Stenfield)

Okay, my divinations were not perfect, but the odds were 31,250 to one if you just guessed and got all six top awards correct.  People think Ted Williams had the best batting average with his .404 average in 1941, but, no, that was Hugh Duffy in 1894 at .440.  My score for the Academy Awards was .500.

Some final thoughts.   Kirk Douglas will be a hundred in about five years.  Considering the terrible stroke he suffered, he performed miraculously.  Warren Beatty looked really old, but he is just about 74, and Annette Benning is not quite 53.  Tony Curtis, who passed away last year, was 85.  Who is Melissa Leo?



Since Pearl passed away, I've been to many movies.  I probably went to 35 movies this year, and double that when you count the ones I watched on TV.  It could have been a lot more were it not for the four months I travelled the world last year.   For example, I was mostly away when The Social Network, True Grit and The Fighter played.

On January 2 I went to two movies, The King's Speech and Black Swan.  It was clear to me than that Colin Firth would win the Oscar for Best Actor and, similarly, though not as conclusively, for Natalie Portman.

The first Academy Awards were held a few months before the Great Depression of 1929.  The 15 winners already knew who they were (this was changed the following year) and the charge was $5/ticket.

The same statuette copy was given that night, and depicts a nude knight with a crusader's sword standing on a reel of film with the five spokes representing actors, writers, directors producers and technicians.  Mexican director/actor Emilio Fernandez posed naked for the cause.

So here are my predictions for:

Best Actor:  Colin Firth

Best Actress:  Natalie Portman

Best Supporting Actor:  Christian Bale

Best Supporting Actress:  Hailee Steinfield

Best Director:  David Fincher

Best Film
#1:  The Social Network
  #2:  The Fighter
    #4:  Black Swan
     #5:  True Grit
      #6:  Inception
       #7:  Winter's Bone
        #8:  127 Hours
         #9:  The Kids Are Allright
                        #10:  Toy Story 3  (and anyone clicking on this deserves the 38 seconds)

Interestingly enough, Toy Story 3 was the highest grossing movie of the year with revenues of a bit more than a billion dollars.  Right behind, and also clearing more than a billion, was Alice in Wonderland, nowhere on the list above.  I actually have a 3D DVD of this movie, and enjoyed the effects.

The #2 grossing film of 2010 was Inception ($293 million), #13 True Grit ($167 million), #23 King's Speech ($115 million), #26 Black Swan ($104 million), and my pick for best film, Social Network, was #32 with $97 million.  Incredible that the worst film of the year, The Last Airbender, made $132 million at #18.  This was well deserved, for since fooling me in the Sixth Sense, which was a good one, M.  Night Shyamalan's subsequent efforts have ranged from pathetic to embarrassing.  But, I guess he keeps making money.  Sex and the City 2 earned #2 on Razzies, but I liked this film because it showed just before I visited Qatar, where the girls went.

Here is something interesting.  The top two worldwide grossing films of all time are Avatar ($2.8 billion, 2009) and Titanic ($1.8 billion, 1997), but adjusted for inflation, Avatar is #14 and Titanic is #6.  Want to guess the top five?  Here they are:

#1  Gone with the Wind ($3 billion, 1939, 9 Oscars):  click to get a new video version.
#2  Star Wars:  Episode IV--A New Hope ($1.63 billion, 1977, 7 Oscars)
#3  The Sound of Music ($1 billion, 1965, 5 Oscars):  want to see what they looked like in 2005?
#4  E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial ($0.97 billion, 1982, 4 Oscars)
#5  The Ten Commandments ($0.52 billion, 1956, only one Oscar for special effects):  Charlton Heston, yes, but Yul Brynner (who actually won the academy award that year for his role in The King and I)?

Not sure what they (two reports referenced above) used in the above list, but the numbers in the parentheses are mine, using the consumer price index, which shows that #2 is Avatar and Titanic #3.  Anyway,  these are the highest grossing films of all time.

Finally, the best original song is always a recent disappointment, but here they are:

Winner?  Who cares.  Who cared much for the Oscar last year, "Weary Kind," from Crazy Heart.  The last one I can even identify was "My Heart Will Go On" in Titanic, and that was in 1997.

So watch:

The 83rd Annual Academy Awards®
Sunday, February 27, 2011 @ 8et/5pt on ABC
Total visitors to this blog site:  73,930
Visitors this week:                    1,190
Number of countries:                   166


Saturday, February 26, 2011


On February 10, my posting was entitled 99 Holes of Golf at Ala Wai.  Well, yesterday, I completed another 99 holes of at the Ala Wai Golf Course.  Thus, for the month of February I am up to 198 holes.  It is not particularly easy to get starting times at this golf course, for it is, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, the busiest golf course in the World.  This as close as I'll get to doing any kind of marathon, and next month I don't plan to golf at all, partly because I will start another travel adventure, with the Eastern Oriental Express (train) from Bangkok to Singapore and sakura watching throughout Japan as two highlights.

Speaking of marathons, I almost ran one.  At the age of 48, so that I could properly train to run the Honolulu Marathon at the age of 50, I asked my doctor about my plans.  He asked why?  I said, "you're right," and never thought about it again.

Going back to golf, you would have expected me to get better and better as the month progressed.  Yes, my final round yesterday was an 83, the lowest of any 18 holes during this stretch.  However, on Thursday, my handicap in Ken Watanabe's compilation was a 20, the highest I have been in years.  In May will come Kenji's Nevada/Utah ordeal, probably 165 holes in one week.

So, to "99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall," you can sing "99 Holes  of Golf at the Ala Wai Golf Course":

Lyrics for 99 Holes of Golf at the Ala Wai Golf Course

99 holes of golf at the Ala Wai Golf Course, 99 holes left to play.
Finish a hole and go on to the next tee, 98 holes left to play.
98 holes of golf at the Ala Wai Golf Course, 98 holes left to play.
Finish a hole and go on to the next tee, 97 holes left to play.
One hole of golf at the Ala Wai Golf Course, one hole left to play.
Finish this hole and go in to the clubhouse, zero holes left to play.
No more holes of golf at the Ala Wai Golf Course, no more left to play.
Start the next series at the Ala Wai Golf Course, 99 holes left to play.

Well, on to my next odyssey, but if you have any interest in golf, then you must read my posting of 30August2010 about the hallowed St. Andrews Golf Courses.

This being an absolutely gorgeous day in Hawaii, I leave with two shots of Honolulu 

and my rooftop:


Friday, February 25, 2011


These are the SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Humanity, as of last year. ( I have inserted a few thoughts from today):


ONE: Ending Crime and War Forever

Ø    War:  convert all nations to democracies, starting with the establishment of a World Peace Center, where diplomats can obtain a universal degree to promote peace, and find a way to give the United Nations enforcement powers on world solutions. In parallel, strive towards total world disarmament.  (While it is true that there has not been a major war between two democracies for 200 years, as I observe the state of governments around the world, I have noticed the more stable ones in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula are those headed by, essentially, benevolent dictators:  Qatar, Tanzania and Botswana.  Perhaps many of these countries in various stages of rebellion can someday mature into democracies, but could well progress more efficiently under a more rigid form of government.)

Ø    The looming world economic cataclysm caused by Peak Oil and Global Heating can serve as the stimulus for the United States to work with the other G8 Nations to immediately (2009) shift military funds towards remediation of this dual hammer.

TWO: Eternal Life

Ø    Develop the necessary computer technology to store knowledge from a brain and perfect human cloning.

Ø    Find the aging gene and disable it.

THREE: Teaching Rainbows

Ø    Incorporate Rigor, Respect, Relevance and Relationship as equals with Reading, Riting and Rithmetic to convert the one marshmallow students to become productive citizens, and further enhance the capabilities of the two marshmallow group. There will further be the bonuses of a lower crime rate and a more peaceful society.

Ø    Anytime there is a budget surplus, local, statewide or nationally, give at least 50% of those funds towards education, preferably to deliver on the new R’s.

Ø    For the U.S. to maintain #1 status, continue to refine the greatness of our universities, from where will come the leaders, thinkers and producers to maintain our pre-eminence.

FOUR: Seeking the SETI Light

Ø    Provide $10 million/year for coherent optical techniques to confirm the presence of Earth-sized exoplanets.

Ø    Establish a Chinese connection by seeding the prospects of a SETI program in China, and nourish it so that it becomes a threat to American egos.

Ø    Re-start an official NASA SETI program at $100 million/year to coordinate the world effort. Alas, we might need to wait a while for that galvanizing spark, whatever form it might take.

FIVE: The Golden Evolution

Ø    Grow up and accept the notion of a Supreme Being as, while once necessary for the survival of our species, now obsolete.

Ø    Acknowledge miracles as impossible.  

Ø    As our society has a fatal flaw in anticipating and subverting future economic calamities, should something like the looming giant asteroid of Peak Oil and Global Warming become a monumental threat to our survival, first, overcome the unparalleled crisis, but more so, learn a lesson in societal maturity by transferring now archaic religious beliefs towards the sustainability of humanity itself.

SIX: The Best Place in the World

Ø    Dream about living in Hawaii.

Ø    Come to Hawaii…if you can afford it!  (On the other hand, Hawaii is like the canary in a coal mine, for when the Peak Oil / Global Warming crunch comes, we will be the first to go into a lengthy economic depression.)

So, the point, I guess, is, come to Hawaii to support our economy and enjoy yourself, but be careful about actually moving here with permanence in mind.  But we are popular, as an article in the Honolulu Star Advertiser showed this morning (read the entire article to understand what these numbers mean):

The Maldives, 1200 islands in the Indian Ocean, is also in dire jeopardy, for sea level rise is expected to wipe them out in the coming years.  Waikiki could be affected, but Hawaii should be okay.

View the Dow Jones Industrials on the right.  Same for the price of oil/barrel and gasoline/gallon.


Thursday, February 24, 2011


When I appeared for my 1PM appointment with my tax accountant, I noticed that he and his crew were unexpectedly inundated with clients, so I volunteered to return in an hour.  Fortunately, in the next door building was Padovani Grill, and, as I already had lunch, decided to test a flight of three red wines

2005 Chateau Mont-Redon Chateauneuf-du-Pape. (France)14% $7
Great bouquet.
2007 Chateau Lagarosse (France) 14% $4
Medicinal aroma, but pleasant tasting.
Lighest body of the three.
2008 Stump Jump Shiraz (Australia) 14.5%. $3
Smelled a bit fishy with a vegetable essence.
Best tasting. Full bodied. Fruity.  My favorite.

For the equivalent volume (six ounces), a two buck Chuck's wine would have cost a total of $0.46. Thus, these three Padovani wines (total of six ounces) cost thirty times more than Chuck's, and I thought the prices at this restaurant were quite reasonable.
Kathy was most gracious and helpful.  The experience was a lot more enjoyable than my previous lunch here, which I reviewed in my 28January2011 blog.
The best part is that I ended up positive, with the Federal and State governments owing me some money.
The Dow Jones Industrials dropped 37 to 12,069, with a mixed world market.  Gold fell $14/toz to $1404, while oil prices actually dropped, the NYMEX at $98/barrel and the Brent Spot at $112/barrel.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011


All the signs are there.  Former President Ben Ali of Tunisia was dictator for 24 years, past Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak was in power for 30 years, and now, Colonel Muamar al-Gaddafi (right), who has been running Libya for 42 years, on the brink of going.  Libya, however, is different:  anti-American, oil supplier and what military there is is loyal to the Colonel, because if he goes, so will they, and brutally.  There will thus be many more deaths before this is over.

The commonality of the three is that each leader tried to become good guys.  An amazing figure below:

shows that the three countries making the greatest leap in the UN Human Development Index over the past thirty years were Tunisia, China and Egypt.  Colonel Gaddafi similarly reached out to the free world, dismantled his weapons of mass destruction, denounced terrorism and made significant concessions regarding Pan Am 103 over Scotland.  The result of these humanitarian gestures must show a sign of weakness to the masses.  WATCH OUT CHINA!  Also, note that Morocco, India and Pakistan are #4-#6 in the chart above.

Another triple digit loss on Wall Street, as the Dow Jones Industrials fell 107 to 12,106, with world markets also almost all declining.  Gold surged up $15/toz to $1413, while the same is happening to oil, as the NYMEX is at $99/barrel and Brent Spot at $112/barrel.

The two tropical cyclone in the general vicinity of Australia, still at 65 MPH, appear to be heading into the open ocean.



It should come as no surprise that the #1 place to live on Planet Earth is Hawaii.  However, if I were to write this book today, Hawaii would not be at the top.  I do worry about Peak Oil, in particular, decimating our tourist industry.  In any case, here is the end of the final chapter from SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Humanity:


…HAWAII has more people (approaching 1.3 million) than 8 states and a larger land area than 7. Actually, counting the Exclusive Economic Zone (the 200 nautical mile region surrounding our country), we are twice as large as Texas.

This is the most isolated island chain in the world, but because of volcanoes as high as 13,796 feet (4,205 meters), the islands enjoy the full range of micro-climates and environments. While Mt. Waialeale on the island of Kauai is either second or first as the wettest spot (about 460 inches/year), just ten miles away are beaches that sometimes experience only 5 inches/year.

We have tended to be ahead of the curve on matters sociological. There have been a lot of ethnic political firsts:

      Chinese U.S. Senator, Hiram Fong.
      Japanese Congressman and U.S. Senator, Daniel Inouye.
      Female Japanese Congresswoman, Patsy Mink (and second in Pat Saiki)
      Hawaiian in Congress and Senate, Daniel Akaka
      Japanese, Hawaiian and Filipino state governors, George Ariyoshi, John Waihee and Ben Cayetano.
      Korean Mayor, Harry Kim.

Hawaii is the most multi-racial state, that is, percentage of citizens of combined races.

We have the only unified statewide educational system, partly explaining why state taxes are the highest in the Nation. Our diverse ethnic mix and interface location between East and West provide a model for universal peace. 

Our agriculture industry is changing. At one time, sugar and pineapple were king.  Today, freshwater sold from the reverse osmosis of deep sea water is our largest export commodity. However, unofficially, marijuana production is our leading agriculture crop, said to be worth in the range of $4 billion/year.

How did Hawaii become Hawaii? It is not absolutely clear if “Hawaiians” first arrived in 200AD or 1000AD, but they came from the Marqueses and Society Islands, followed by Tahiti in 1300AD. Then, in sailed British explorer Captain James Cook in 1778, followed by assorted missionaries, mostly from the New England states. In 1810, King Kamehameha the Great united Hawaii.

The sugar industry started in 1835 in Koloa, Kauai, largely by the sons of these religious families, who were instrumental in having Hawaii annexed to the United States in 1898, to stabilize higher sugar prices and obtain other legal expediencies. Koloa is where my father resettled in 1903 after his father passed away.

Largely beginning in the mid-1800’s, the industry brought in nearly 400,000 laborers from China, Japan, Puerto Rico, Korea and the Philippines, and supervisors from Portugal, Norway, Germany and Scotland. Considering that the total population of Hawaii was only 154,000 in 1900 and less than 500,000 in 1950, when much of this practice stopped, it is clear that the sociological mixing pot and resultant society today were due to sugar, which happened to be my first job in 1962. Statehood was attained three years earlier when Hawaii became the 50th and last state to enter the Union, and in 2009 will celebrate half a century of being an equal member of the U.S.

Hawaii has passed monumental land and water use legislation. We tried the gas cap, but a year later, our gasoline prices were still the highest in the Nation. So we gave up on that one. We kicked homeless people out of parks before the community could react, and, guess what? Solutions appeared. Churches, it turns out, do have purpose and value. Some offered a place to sleep at night (for there is a lot of space not used at night) with a start-off breakfast in the morning. Members sometimes interacted with the “guests” and part-time jobs resulted. Trusting relationship began to form, and some of the homeless problem was ameliorated, for a while. And Hawaii did not even have to resort to using public schools, which also aren’t used at night, or the military, which offers another dimension of cooperation. This is still a work in progress, for parks are again beginning to be settled.

But all is not perfect, as, while we don’t have malaria or chikumgunya mosquitoes, we do have large cockroaches. In fact, they are referred to as B-52s, because they fly and can frighten you. However, they are not as large as those from Ecuador (try 6 inches long with a one foot wingspan), which are also poisonous, nor Le Reunion Island, where I encountered a monster. Honolulu is #5 on the list of most roach-infested cities in the U.S., according to Vernard Lewis of the University of California at Berkeley.   

More seriously, today, as I am continuing to write, The Honolulu Advertiser reported that Hawaii ranks (in addition to those entries cited earlier):

o      #47 (out of 50, edging out San Francisco, Oakland, New Orleans and Miami, from as the worst place to live based on potential natural disasters. In case you want to be safe, Mesa (Arizona), Milwaukee (Wisconsin) and Cleveland (Ohio) are the top three. Yes, we do have earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, hurricanes…name it, we probably are the most exciting place on Earth. Keep in mind, though, that at my advanced age, I have not yet felt a strong earthquake, seen a tsunami, or had to deal with a hurricane. And I’ve lived here most of my life.
o      #3 by the United Health Foundation as the healthiest state in 2007, next to Vermont and Minnesota. We were #9 in 1990. Thus, terrific, and getting better.
o      #2 from the bottom (this is really good) with respect to the prevalence and severity of depression, next to South Dakota.319  Yes, South Dakota.  Utah was #51 and West Virginia #50. Mormon Church? Lack of alcohol? Coal? South Dakota is the least depressed state?
o      #41 (good) by Mental Health America on suicides. Utah was #1 (bad, very bad). Heart disease and cancer kill more people, but suicide is next, so there must be something about Honolulu that makes it just of opposite of Las Vegas and Salt Lake City.
o      #5 (of medium sized metropolises, from the Bailey’s Irish Cream and Sperling Best Places ranking) for most “Chilled Out” city. For those who are not in the know, being chilled out is good, with no relationship to getting frozen. It relates to a neat place to hang out. The best cities are Phoenix (Arizona, mega), Portland (Oregon, large) and Colorado Springs (Colorado, medium). Honolulu was hurt by being rated the lowest for cool coffee houses. I guess the swarm of Starbucks doesn’t count, for there must be one every few blocks.
o      #4 (with Essex County in Massachusetts and San Francisco and San Jose, California being even worse, from in the top 10 of most overpriced places to live in the U.S. The average price of a home in Honolulu is $625,000, with San Jose at $746,800, even higher than San Francisco at $720,400. When I was matriculating at Stanford, my freshman roommate, Jim Seger, came from San Jose, and he would have agreed with me that San Jose was then a hick town. What a difference half a century can make. Similarly, I spent my summers in Oxnard, 60 miles north of Los Angeles, in those days known as the lima bean capital of the world. Today, home prices are higher than Hawaii’s.
o      #4 (with New Jersey, Maryland and Connecticut #1 to #3) in millionaires per household in 2007. We were #1 in 2005 and 2006. We’ll be back if you move here.

The point, too, of course, is that Honolulu and Hawaii, as isolated and small as they are, always are included in national and world rankings. I can further add that Hawaii, at 52%, has the highest rate of people killed in alcohol-related traffic accidents. Utah is lowest at 24%. Do you want to live in Utah? Soon in Hawaii will come a mandatory DUI preventative device to reduce this partying downside.

Where will Hawaii be by the turn of century? Sea level rise could impact our famous beaches and resorts. But the sea itself will be alive with floating cities, tending next generation fisheries and marine biomass plantations, while helping to remediate global climate warming. The Blue Revolution could by then serve to prevent the formation of these giant storms, and, also, reduce the impact of the Greenhouse Effect.

We should someday be totally powered by sustainable energy (Book 1 of SIMPLE SOLUTIONS).  Solar energy, windpower, ocean energy and biofuels (also from the sea) will prevail. Perhaps a renewable hydrogen economy will be in place. No coal, no nuclear.

Our ethnic diversity already has made us the world melting pot. Today, 20% of our citizens are multi-racial. Crime will be in check and there will be peace on Earth, of course, partly due to Chapter 1. Some of you will be contemplating eternal life (Chapter 2) and education will become a rainbow experience (Chapter 3). We might have begun communicating with other worlds (Chapter 4) and there will be the Golden Evolution of religion (Chapter 5). The Hawaii 2050 Sustainability Task Force, which is reporting to the public as I write this sentence, will set the tone for a progressive Hawaii, and so will Fred Riggs’ sustainability group through his web page at:

(Sorry, Fred passed away a couple of years ago, and the link does not work)

Early in 2008 there was a best place contest to pick Hawaii’s top 25 sites to visit. Maui’s Haleakala Crater at sunrise? Kauai’s Waimea Canyon at sunset? The volcanoes, green sand beach and macadamia nut plantations of the Big Island?  The Green Flash from my penthouse? That secret fishing ground off Molokai? The Manoa Valley rainbow? You can contact  with the secret password, Na Wahi Heke, and gain access to the poll results.

You, too, can become a part of this future. Can you imagine a better place on Planet Earth? This is not heaven, but is the closest thing to paradise. If you can’t afford it, certainly don’t come, but if this is to be your last life, you might as well make it exciting, memorable, enjoyable and lengthy.

The Dow Jones sunk 178 to 12,213, while world markets also mostly dropped.  Unrest in Libya is being blamed, for NYMEX crude jumped $6/barrel to $95 and the Brent Spot is now at $107/barrel. Gold increased $9/toz to $1397.


Monday, February 21, 2011


This is my 1000th posting, with it all beginning on 29April2008.  I initially had 6 a week, resting one weekend day, and was stymied by my trip to China, which has a feud with Google, which operates this site.  This now a true daily.

I initially focused on energy and environment matters, for after all, my first book was entitled SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Planet Earth.  The daily visitor count was in the range of 20 to 50, with a few days in single digits.

Mostly after book two was published, SIMPLE SOLUTIONS for Humanity, I began to step into subect areas such as travel, space, food, lifestyles, etc.  Certain subjects doubled the readership (the numbers are visitors that day):

  -    115  Country #1 Afghanistan
  -    232 HuffPo Thoughts
  -    145  I Made it to Vietnam
  -    159  The King and I
  -    213  Fascinating Barcelona
  -  3912  The Chile Earthquake
  -    197  Sunset at Hualalai
  -    527  The Magic of Truffles
  -    286  162 Holes of Golf

So what do the above indicate:

1.  There is not one posting that refers to energy and the environment.
2.  People like to indulge in my travels and gourmet meals, and generally enjoy my review of movies and clips on nostalgia.
3.  Natural disasters are a magnet.
4.  There is a link between my Huffington Post articles and my daily blog.

For example, a year ago I was in Amsterdam when the Great Chile Earthquake struck.  I was contacted by the Huffington Post to write about the incoming tsunami to Hawaii.  So, watching CNN, which showed live what was happening at Waikiki Beach and Hilo Harbor, I submitted my posting a few minutes before the disaster was potentially to strike the Big Island.  However, I could adjust my article with every turn, and two hours later, completed the entry.  I don't know how many read this reportage in HuffPo, but 3912 visited this blog site that day, about ten times more than the best I can get.  So I'm awaiting the next disaster.

But, more seriously, I wondered why was I wasting my time writing about things I knew--energy and the environment--when my readership was instead more interested in topics like food, music, movies, travel, life experiences and so on.  I thus posted in this blog on 27November 2010:

There were six comments, which averages out to about six more than normal.  I'm mystified because no one comments on my daily blog, whereas quite a number do to my HuffPos.  However, readership has doubled each year and now rarely drops below triple digits, but this could be because I try to make my postings more entertaining rather then scientifically rigid.

So, while I am not totally giving up on saving Planet Earth and Humanity, and will regularly include matters regarding Peak Oil, Global Warming, renewable energy, sustainable resources, doomsday and the like, I will expand on items of greater interest to you.  Aloha, and Happy Presidents' Day.

There are three storms in the Southern Hemisphere, where Tropical Cyclone Atu is at 110 miles per hour, but generally traveling over the ocean and is scheduled to miss New Caledonia and New Zealand:

Tropical Cyclone Carlos, now at 65 MPH, will soon attain hurricane strength and skirt some cities along the Western Australian coastline.


Sunday, February 20, 2011


The two box office hits this weekend were #1, Unknown, and #2, I Am Number 4.  I found both to be entertaining and ideal for escapism.  Unknown is the better film (56% rating on Rotten Tomatoes) over IM#4 (RT=27%).

Unknown is based on a French novel about biotechnology, minor amnesia and assassination, with an intriguing and suspenseful, but difficult to believe, story line.  I'm not giving anything away by saying there is an unexpected, but happy, ending.  Liam Neeson puts on a good performance and is now the reigning action star.

I Am Number Four is mostly about aliens, but weakly managed.  The main alien is supposed to be a 15 year high school student, but looks like a senior in college.  To make a long story short, nine young aliens are somehow transported to Earth to grow up and develop special physical powers.  However, they are being pursued by other aliens looking like white Mike Tysons.  Don't understand why, but each hunted wears a sequential charm.  Three are killed, and #4 is that high school student.  I suspect this film will ultimately make more money than Unknown because it is tailored to draw teenagers with chases, fights, morphing monster animals, super guns, love and more.  Can't imagine why a vampire wasn't tossed into the mix.  How's this for ambition, but this is to be a six-part series, and the next film, entitled the The Power of Six, is expected to be released in August.