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Sunday, February 1, 2015


Here were my title choices:

The first option was current and true.  We are now at such a distressing and disturbing nadir, that it can only get better.  Well, not true, but hopefully so.  But my whole life has been built on overcoming one in a million hurdles, and my greatest achievements have come when all looked hopeless.

So why not, too, the University of Hawaii, an organization I joined in 1972, and 43 years later still maintain a full office on the Manoa Campus?  When you are at these depths, the timing is optimal to make a miracle recovery.  All it will take is one spark, equivalent to the Big Bang.

But let's start with University of Hawaii basketball.  Yesterday they got hit with seven severe infractions.  Frankly, the media and everyone are making this announcement as the equivalent of Ebola.  It's not that bad and  we have already fired the coaches, lost our best senior who went European-pro and best freshman recruit transferred.  Even the athletic director resigned.  An incredible plus is that the temporary coach and ragtag team are doing okay.  Yes, there will be a sanction or two, like losing a couple more players, and recruiting will be impossible for the next few years.  But the whole effort to gain nationwide excellence will take a decade anyway, and today is when this should all begin.

Football?  Not unlike the Titanic.  Not the film, but the original ship itself.   Two years ago we almost went winless, losing the first eleven games, and, maybe because I actually went to the final game against Army, my first in a decade, we won, 49-42.  This coming fall, we start with away games at Ohio State (only the #1 team in the nation) and Wisconsin.  How scheduling dumb is that?
It was  a little more than 60 years ago when the University of Hawaii football team edged the Honolulu high school all stars.  Then, in came the University of Nebraska, as a tune up for its upcoming Orange Bowl game.  Score?  50-0. Ah, Hawaii lost.  The following year, 1955, Hawaii traveled to Nebraska.  Game time temperatures went up to 95 F, with a 26 MPH wind.  Twenty-two players suited up for the game, eight went both ways and played every minute.  Charley Araki (below photo, second from the left, with Walter Nozoe, also one of my golfing friends, third from the left, who graduated in 1954), someone I golf with, was one of them.  They lost both their quarterbacks from injuries.  Final score?  6-0, Hawaii won, and outgained Nebraska 318 yards to 219 yards.  Said Hawaii Coach Hank Vasconcellos

There’s no question that Nebraska is superior. We won through courage and sheer guts. 

Here are a few of them today:

So how do we begin this resurrection?  One way not to do it is begin a traditional search for another athletic director, which is exactly what they are now doing.  Again, how dumb can you get?  Here is the only strategy that should work:
  • Arrangements can surely be made for President David Lassner to spend a night on Lanai, and intermediates should be able to arrange a dinner with Larry Ellison, who owns the island and much on it.
  • At some ideal moment, Lassner asks Ellison:  You know a lot of people, can you recommend someone who we might recruit as our next athletic director?
  • Don't ask for a penny.  Pay for the dinner if possible.
  • Come home.
Pick that person as AD and who knows what could happen.  If not for Phil Knight, the University of Oregon would just be another university, same for T. Boone Pickens and Oklahoma State.  On the Forbes billionaire list:
  • T. Boone Pickens, dropped off the list and was last listed at a worth of $950,000.
  • #35  Phil Knight, $22 billion.
  • #3  Larry Ellison, $52 billion.
Speaking of non-smartness, there is the Professional Golfers Association.  They have been bought out by major economic forces.  At one time there was that wonderful Phoenix Open, with stands cheering and jeering just like at a football game.  Now it is known as the Waste Management Phoenix Open, which concludes today.  Secondly, these tournamenents are restricted.  Call it the Phoenix WM.  Love those talking trash cans, but the name has got to change.  Beginning this coming week, the Farmers Insurance Open.  Go back to San Diego Torrey Pines something, and they will double the view.

Remember the Bob Hope Classic?  That was last week:  The Humana Challenge, associated with the Clinton Foundation.  Okay, I appreciate that Hope is long dead and the five-day event is now four and long gone from Doral, plus Bill Clinton is famous.  But The Masters is still called The Masters.  The Open Championship at St. Andrews this year is still The Open Championship.  Incidentally, all golf courses should add cheering/jeering sections, with cheerleaders. Well, then, again, maybe not.

Good sunset last night, with an almost green flash:

I also have a fabulous and functional basil bowl, and you can't really appreciate how large the leaves are, but the second photo indicates 4 inches...and some are longer:

Over the past two weeks I've picked off at least 20 leaves, and you really can't tell if anything has been harvested.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Your basil plant...don't forget to pick off the flower branch below the first leaf under the flower branch. If you leave the flowers on, all the energy of the branch will go towards making seeds. eventually the branch will die off. when you cut off the flower branch, new shoots on that stem might start to flourish. KaraokeLuxe