Onsite Schedule (and somewhere in all this, work gets done)

Image4am: Roll eyes at the glass of wine on the nightstand (I waste about a ¼ of the box in this fashion).

4:30am: Drag myself out to the pool for laps.  In this oblivious state, get yelled at by hotel staff to navigate around the floor buffing. Think, “Christ, the maintenance at Disney is never-ending. Why can’t they ever put away my ironing board?”

4:35am:  Get in pool and have irrational fears that an alligator is in the water waiting for me.

5:30am: Traipse thru hotel in towel soaking wet hoping I don’t see anyone I know.

5:35am: Co-worker gets off elevator and says “Hi Sharon!” while my wet haggardness gets on.

7am call time: Bitch about not sufficiently “visiting Kathy’s parents” then smart-assedly ask what everyone’s plans are for their day at Disney.

12noon: Point out how tight the morning’s lose-fitting clothes have become and how my doughboy capabilities are uncanny. (While this has remained a source of – mostly my – amusement over the years, I should probably see a doctor.)

3pm – 6pm: Make various inappropriate comments about everyone and everything (role plays, incompetent tech guys, hooker load-ins, etc.) as it is my way.

4pm: Realize we all have LMFAO’s “Party Rock” hatefully stuck in our heads.

4:05pm: Sing techno break to “Party Rock” with co-workers against our will for 5th time.

5pm: Mention again (because that horse is not quite pulp), that I am such a bloatation device, they could fly me in the Macy’s parade… and just in time for the dinner troughs.

6:30pm: Whisk out of our meal buffet with a covered plate to smuggle up to hotel room to enjoy with boxed red wine while lounging in my underwear. (Glamorous!)

8:00pm: Fall asleep in front of TV with glass of wine at my side.

12:30am: Awake in a panic thinking it is morning.

4am: Repeat cycle (until I have no idea what day it is).

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Aloha Hawaii?

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I’ve spent two months working in NYC and when I was preparing to leave Hawaii to come to the city, you’d think I was heading to death row. I was teary at the thought of leaving every time I looked out the window at that heavenly sprawling Hawaiian view. I felt like flying from HI to Newark was literally like going from heaven to hell. (And every time I am in the security line at Newark, it really does feel like I am as far from paradise as one gets.)

After completing two freelance gigs based in Manhattan full of laughs and frustrations, I am torn about returning to Hawaii. I have not lost all sense of reality. I do know which one brings me birdsong and plumeria-scented breezes as opposed to homicide-inducing car horns and 51 nasty flavors of subway stank. But, after 4 years, I have yet to establish a lucrative source of income or any sort of social life in paradise. Whereas, in NYC, I can convince someone to hire me on occasion to their satisfaction and my door has revolved many nights for very enjoyable dinners at Chez Inieberator (I cannot really afford to go out, so having friends in is my remedy).

I am hyper-aware of my motives (yet act helpless to change them). I probably moved to Hawaii to escape something in me. You can run where ever you want, but you cannot shake your inherent traveling companion.  Until something is settled inside, outside (no matter how beautiful) will never satisfy for long.

When I arrived in NYC at the start of this visit, I was easily able to greet the frowning rudeness with a “that’s your problem, you uptight city haole” smile. It is becoming harder to maintain that “I’m fresh off the mountains of paradise so you can’t squash me with your steamrolling city ways” attitude.  I’m starting to fantasize about ruining people that cut me off on the bike or lay on their horn at 3am in front of my window.

I am an unemployed NY Shitty beast again, so it is time to leave and hit restart. I can’t be in NYC without work. I can easily start Howard Hughes-ing — sunlight makes me squint with blindness, my shoes can no longer contain my toenails and I’m speaking in clicks and grunts in no time after the last paycheck has rolled in.

I guess I cannot really say what I feel about Hawaii until I look into my lover’s sunrise again and fully know if I can bear to leave it. What I do know is that it is inspiring, expensive, lonely, gorgeous, passive-aggressive and wondrous.

What I don’t know is if my passion for it is realistic. I have aging parents I am VERY far from and cannot afford to see, there is no reliable work that pays enough to support my HI rent, I talk too fast, blonde and loud not to get stink eye on a daily basis, I really should pretend I’m something I’m clearly not (a sweet-natured, unopinionated island girl) in order to assimilate and sometimes it feels like I am on a deserted island. I haven’t figure out how to make who I am work for me there. 

Aloha ‘oe?

 

 

Blow hard, Gasbag.

I tell the cautionary tale of the too many over-told tales…
When I was younger (okay, and sometimes now when I lose all sense of self-awareness and what’s interesting), I thought it was appropriate to tell everyone the full tedious story of my personal life (now I do it in a limited number of characters for what I hope is the entertainment and/or horror of others on FB). I know of a person that needs a personality intervention where an assembly of his family and friends tell him to cease the long-winded, ego-driven stories in hopes that he finally realizes to everyone’s relief that being a narcissistic douche can be overcome. After knowing this ultimate candidate for a “painful character traits” intervention for over a year, I have realized how incredibly unflattering it is to insert yourself into every situation. Ah, thank you to life lessons learned in the least expected places.

The only reason this person asks where someone is from is so he can somehow relate it to the time he’s been there, no matter how insignificant… “Where you from?” he asks. The unsuspecting waiter, bartender or receptionist replies, “Milwaukee.” (I wish for once someone said Uranus, but then his colonoscopy story would undoubtedly ensue.) Him: “I was stuck in a long layover in the Milwaukee airport once.” I’m sarcastically thinking: how exciting, what a unique experience, tell us more… did you peruse a Hudson News, belly up to the bar at a Chili’s Express, wait in line on a badly timed trip to the bathroom near a gate that just de-planed, or meet someone as equally self-absorbed as your insufferable, clueless self while waiting to board and have them suffocate you with their gasbagging? Instead, I furtively roll my eyes to no one and count down the minutes until I can go swab the blood from my ears.

No one asks, but unsolicited one hears him tell how he’s lost 26 lbs – “with 10 more to go”. If he weren’t such a bulldozer and let someone somehow notice it and inquire, this would not annoy me as it does. If you look closely, you can see that he looks like he is now in his second trimester instead of his third. Then you hear for the 20th time in a day how he’s done it with cross fit and kettlebell training. Sadly, there is always one in the crowd that doesn’t know what kettlebells are, and this sadist encourages him by asking. All I can think in his presence is life would be more fully lived with “less kettlebell”. What should be shouted is, “how about kudos for the rest of us that didn’t allow ourselves to gain 36 lbs in the first place?”

I work out a lot but I don’t go on and on about it. I don’t really want people to know that I strive to look this mediocre, but regardless, I am very aware that this topic along with your diet and ailments are interesting only to the teller. It’s deadly boring for someone to tell you about every twist, turn and fart they made during their workout. Are you really going to stand before us with a digital map displayed on your cell and recount the complete path of the 9,000 tedious steps you took to run 6 miles this morning? Actually, thank you for sharing this, because I’ll know where to run you over with my car on your next jaunt.

One hears the same stories each time they see him. My problem is that I have no memory so I say, “no, I don’t think I heard that one.” Two words in, I realize I’ve heard it more times than the pledge of allegiance, which I try to tell him, but once a rampant blowhard has started, they think they are so entertaining that they can regale you again (unaware that they’ve actually never “regaled” anyone).

The unnecessary details in these stories abound. This is standard procedure for someone that incorrectly perceives themselves as an enchanting weaver of tales. Example: “So I pick up the phone on Monday afternoon about 3pm — no wait, it was Tuesday. I dial the phone and I say hi”. I have already fallen asleep with my eyes open at this point which means I’ll be subject to the re-telling of this story because I’m mentally no longer in the room. When it comes up next, I’ll again think I haven’t heard it — because I tried so hard no to, and thus, the cycle of inane repetition perpetuates.

The worst part is being regularly subjected to this mind-numbing tedium can have you checking out when the information is actually pertinent. “Sharon, look out for that car!” gets blocked out just like “Sharon, look at that tricked out car. Why does anyone drive that here (in HI)? They can only do 60 mph on one freeway.” This would come up every time he’d see a Jag, Lamborghini or the like, as though it was a new revelation. Sometimes for my own entertainment, I’d point it out to provoke the predictable Pavlovian response and like any person with their head so thoroughly lodged in their own butt, he’d never realize he was taking the bait.

Each time we’d drive by Ala Wai golf course, he’d say again how it was the most boring course ever played. How appropriate for the most boring sport ever talked about. His going on about golf would be like my going on at length about make-up to construction workers. When talking about pars, greens and birdies to me, I always thought I should rally with primers, mascaras and concealers to give him a taste of such pure disinterest and unrelatability.

I was also periodically treated to name drops falling on my head. I don’t know how anyone of fame or infamy would actually befriend this person. I imagine an equally self-important person talking at him while at the same time, he talks back and thus, the love of their own voices echoing off deaf ears seals the perceived friendship.

There was also no awareness during business meetings of the telltale signs that someone has had enough of this bombast either. Pens and notebooks are put away, watches are checked, pending engagements are mentioned, climbing out of skin at epic heights is achieved and somehow he is still telling the story of his St. Andrews golf game to a client that will surely never bring up their Scottish origins in his presence again.

I am unsure how his wife was not a deaf, burned-out shell of a woman from the daily bombardments of hot air blasted in her direction.

Ultimately, being astounded by this person’s behavior proved valuable because a mirror was held up and I realized I needed to stamp out any semblance of myself in it. Please always tell me when I am boring you homicidal or repeating myself, I promise to heed the warning.

May all our long stories be short — or at least interesting.

Giving Thanks for White Lies & Falling Skies

Pictured: Polynesian Petunias

Thanksgiving Day found me with a full day of obligations – more so than my average unemployed day. I delivered Meals on Wheels in the morning. I am by no means a wonderful, valiant person for doing this. I did it last year because a friend asked if I was interested, then MOW contacted me to do it again this year. To reiterate, I didn’t do anything deserving, they came to me.

I had 4 deliveries, all to women, so I decided to get them each a petunia plant. My roommate has a ton of flowers — and has repeatedly consoled herself with how they only cost a dollar when I am left to attend them and my gangrene thumb sends them into the abyss. So, what’s $4 to bring some semi-lasting beauty to the day?

The recipient of my third delivery’s name is Yuriko. When I hand Yuriko the petunia plant and say, “this is just from me” before giving her the bag with the meal, she urgently says, “hold on” and off she goes while the screen door slams in my face. I hear her slippered feet quickly padding through her house and back. She reappears with a frosty bottle of water and says, “ice cold for you, you look so hot” (thank you ever-present under boob sweat for the give away). I think she had to give me something for giving her something. The sweetness of this gesture warms my heart (and my tit sweat shadow expands).

She asks if I am having turkey dinner today. To avoid this question, I tell her I am running a wine tasting at the local grocery store for a few hours. We briefly discuss the merits of getting paid. She then says “so you have turkey after”? I finally lie and say, “yes, I meet family later for turkey” (I’m suddenly talking in Hawaiian pidgin because it is being spoken to me – mongoose hear, mongoose do.)

She tells me her son is coming over with his family later bringing turkey, but she likes this meal better. As much as she wants to believe I am having turkey with family later, I need to believe that she is spending the afternoon basking in the happy glow of her caring ohana while eating a second-rate turkey dinner. I cannot bear the thought of her sitting alone all day and she couldn’t abide my lone afternoon lounging in a movie theater with James Bond, a bag of popcorn and a smuggled-in vodka then heading home to a solo night of grilling salmon and in-demanding the Mindy Projects I’ve missed. I’m thankful we can successfully white lie to each other today.

I get to the wine tasting which I figure will be a bust, but I’m in public with contacts in, make up on and hair blown dry, so it’s a holiday miracle all ready. I’m thinking, who is going to want to taste wine from 11:30am-2:30pm on Thanksgiving in a store where a piece of cheese is $27? As it turned out, many people, so what do I know.

A few people feel compelled to mention how I am working on Thanksgiving Day. They ask what time I get off and seem relieved that it’s early enough for me to still go spend it with family (ah, the white lies continue… I’m almost starting to believe my long-suffering husband, our 2 grown gay children and 3 dogs – a Lab, a pit and an English bulldog actually exist and lovingly await my hard-working shirt stains arriving home to them). One guy says, “how they’d get you to work today?” I say, “well, I don’t work any of the other days, so what the hell!” He thinks I’m kidding – but believes me about the imaginary family. Hmmm, the magic of the holidays.

Somehow I sell 11 bottles of over-priced wine and many wedges of $19.99 /lb cheese whose samples festoon my table. It took me a while to try the cheese (not so long to try the wine), but after I did, I insisted everyone try it. It was a parmesan-gouda-crack blend that a lab rat would uncontrollably eat until it died. I could’ve easily set up (fat) camp at that table and swilled the whole bottle of Cotes Du Rhone while wedging that wedge into my cheese hole until it was no more — like performance art of Thanksgiving gluttony (or my average Saturday night).

I ran out of wine early and had to close up shop — which was fine as I’d already bought the ticket to Skyfall (an old habit from NYC where the theaters are sold-out on T-giving). In Hawaii, it really is all about the ohana on the holidays, so the turn out at the theater is minimal.  I settle into the movie with my contraband cocktail and small popcorn (what restraint! Even on this one day where I could justify stuffing more buttery maize in my maw like a piggish pilgrim).

Chase scenes, Daniel Craig’s pursed lips, Judi Dench’s eyelid hoods and Javier Bardem’s skilled flouncing flash before my eyes repeatedly while popcorn and vodka are inhaled. I opt to hit the ladies when they drive the Aston Martin to Skyfall. I arrive back as they are preparing to defend Skyfall. Apparently, James Bond’s whole, never-before-told back story is relayed in that bit — perfect timing on the releasing of the vodka. Oh well, what I don’t know, can’t bore me. I was just thrilled I didn’t miss the homoerotic scene with the amazing Javier and rigor mortis lips. Overall, I thought the movie was mediocre (just like Daniel Craig – would the sky fall if he brought a smidgen of humor to the role?!), but Javier Bardem swished me entertained.

I headed home to grill salmon and share it with my orange-striped ingrate while playing the role of Demanda with the TV and watching missed primetime shows.  My roommate had invited me to the neighbors for turkey, but she didn’t tell me their address (does that count as an invite then?). Instead, I gave thanks for cheap petunias, a bottle of water, sympathetic white lies, cheese crack, imaginary families, movie snacks, main stream homoerotica and salmon-induced purring. I am sincerely thankful… but still hungry.

Pukey and the Gimp

Dog sat for Murphy (the cocker spaniel) and his sister, Maddy (the boxer), and sent a version of this email to their parents:

Pukey and the Gimp…  Not sure what is up with Maddy’s leg/foot. When we went to Maunawili this morning she acted like she couldn’t get in or out of the car on her own (doesn’t she always do this?). Plus, she didn’t really run (might have been hot altho the sun wasn’t out) or hop once we were there. She is hobbling on it periodically but I can’t see anything wrong. I’ve tried feeling up her whole leg and foot to tell the difference, but am getting no where like I’m on a date with a Mormon.

I think she’s faking to get attention because I play unbridled favorites when it comes to Murphy. Murphy is the baby Jesus in my delusional eyes. Murph is the second coming while Maddy is just second rate.  My faultless Christ child does not try to hog the whole manger each night at bedtime like Lady Mad Dog does either.

She also seems to have a little underarm rash (don’t we all) that she’ll lick at until the end of time (won’t we all) if you let her. She was cement glued to my side both nights in the bed.
I washed the sheets and blanket. The blanket, because someone (all I can vouch for is that it wasn’t me) licked or chewed themselves enough to bleed on the blanket (and sheets). The sheets are folded (or what resembles folding, Murph could do a better job at this than me) on the bed and the blanket and any towels used should be done in the dryer.
I really like Maunawili, closer than the beach and not a sandy mess. Plus, don’t have to worry about Cujo going apeshit on every dog in a yard in the hood. She was rabidly biting at her leash when we went by the pitbull-toad a couple doors up (did that pitbull eat the little dog and the deaf one she used to share the yard with? Where are they?) yesterday morning so I chose Maunawili over that frothing at the mouth mess this morning.
Think that’s about it. Did I say how much I love Murphy? Even when he vomits on his BFF, the sock? I have done my best to also give her Madness love, but I think she senses who I originally worship.
Thanks for allowing me this deeper appreciation for my cat. We are thinking of renewing our vows.

Chlamydian Angels

Last weekend brought the Blue Angels (accomplished Marine and Navy pilots that helm fast, loud planes in Top Gun-style maneuvers) to Kaneohe Bay for some rousing air shows. My roommate is in a sailing club so she invited me out on her friend’s 34 ft sailboat with a group of other sailing buddies to watch the festivities from an excellent vantage point in the center of K-Bay.

Like my early bird father, the captain wants to get a jump on a good spot. My father will have us in the car on our way to the Outback for dinner at 4pm siting traffic and a “no reservations” policy for this ridiculous head start – at most this is a 30 minute drive.  I’m always in the car thinking, “Are we about to have dinner at 4:30? I just finished throwing up lunch.” In the same vein, Captain (Time) Crunch has us meeting at the boat at 9am for a show that starts at 3:30pm.

I unsuspectingly get up at 8am unsure what time we need to be at the boat but knowing they usually meet about 11am. I am immediately in fire drill mode foraging for worthy contributions to the ice chest, hunting up and de-molding my snorkel gear, rifling through my beach bag to ensure all sunscreen needs and back-up garments with a dry crotch are provided for while trying to get some iced coffee down my neck at hearing we have to be there by 9am.

We get onboard, out in the bay and start getting to know our fellow sailors. I latch on to the couple, Aaron and Steve (of course I do). Steve I had met before but didn’t realize he was gay until he brought steamed edamame in a pot complete with matching dishtowel to our post-sailing BBQ. That dishtowel might as well have been a perfumed and sequined rainbow flag the way it immediately amped up the sonar on my gaydar. I happily aside to my roommate, “Oh yay, he rocks the Eve in Steve!”

On settling in, Aaron says to Steve, “Oh, I forgot the earplugs.” Ah, thank you, we got the gayest phrase we will hear today out of the way. Not only that, think on your pedicured feet for ear-stopping options, Mary, you brought brie didn’t you?

Aaron is a flight attendant and former New Orleans bartender so he laughs at everything I say plus his cooler is filled with thoughtful items… pewter bottle opener, extensive cheese selection, N’awlins beer huggies, tasteful bamboo cutting board, gallon of water and carafe to pour it from, etc. I categorically crush hard on him. I want us to be life long girlfriends and have Real Houseswives-themed slumber parties.

My day 2 buddy (I went out Sat and Sun — all the crew changed except Capt CK, my roommate and her houseguest) is the young cousin of my roommate’s friend. I love her because she says I am one of the only people she’s seen in Hawaii that doesn’t have toe nails that look like snail shells, we belt out Rihanna to the radio together, we both suffer mild hypothermia during snorkeling and curse our MIA dingy driver through chattering purple lips and she brings one of those Bud Light Micheladas as her drink of choice. Ole.

Capt TC has not seen a can of Michelada before. I inform him they are like a beer with a splash of bloody mary. He starts to read the ingredients aloud and false starts on the word “Clamato” enough that I chime in with “chlamydia”. I then spout that chlamydia is actually the secret ingredient in a Michelada  (although now that I think about it, it may very well be a key element in Clamato too). Oh, what merriment to pretend we can mix drinks with STDs!

Throughout the day the Red Baron gets the crowd going by doing climbs and free falls. The first few times you see this, you glance, possibly discuss airsickness and keep chatting with your neighbor. By the 5th time (and once you are well into the wine), you stop mid-sentence and gape in awe at this amazing daredevil. Like magic, you can mix alcohol with mildly impressive feats and transform them into show stopping shit bombs. (This same idea supports the “beer goggles” theory of late night, barstool beauty.)

As we approach show time, the bay has filled with all types of boats. You can plainly see the dichotomy that gender and age bestow on us when comparing these various vessels and their inhabitants. Next to us are the young crowd crammed into small tethered-together motorboats, baring as much nubile skin as is legal, blasting Kanye, passing bags of chips and swilling from red Solo cups while periodically back flipping overboard to pee (the few girls on these boats hold onto the sides and dangle their butts into the water while I helpfully point out to everyone on our boat, “look, that girl is peeing!”) We, the ancient mariners (or the half dead), are lounging on various ends of the boat, tapping feet to the Doobie Bros, sipping from wine glasses and nibbling at a fruit and cheese plate whilst wearing conservative bathing suit cover-ups and occasionally disappearing below deck for a discreet hit of the head.

Finally, it is show time. Once one hears a Blue Angel roar by, it’s almost too late to see it, they are that speedy (and exciting). They fly at each other mimicking a game of chicken, veering away at the last minute or each flipping on their side to avoid the other. There is no way to watch this and not imagine the pure, adrenaline-filled joy this must give the pilots. Their job is to Evil Knievel over some of the most incredible panoramas in this country. Those lucky hot dogs… if someone paid me to be reckless, I could have retired at 29 (back in the day when a Michelada wasn’t the only one with the secret ingredient).

When the planes fly over, the beasts in the motorboats next to us unleash and go into a monkey-assed frenzy. They beat chests, high five and grunt-scream “do me!” to the jets overhead. I wish I was exaggerating. They are behaving like these aircrafts have tits (or are throwing footballs). I swear each time the planes pass, the motorboat boys (I’m sure I just made a valid double entendre) get a collective hard on.

I’m trying to think what could possibly get me this excited… being mobbed by kittens and puppies, the pilot episode of the Mindy Project (I totally raised my fist and said “yes” at the end of that show like it had somehow validated my existence) or a pill that erases wrinkles and fat? But seriously, none of these examples could have me in Michael Phelps post-gold stance flexing my arms like a Neanderthal complete with veins bulging from my neck while bellow-demanding “do me”. I’d be more likely to quietly leak uncontrollable fluids from various orifices while giggling hysterically at the pure pleasure caused by the baby animal mob. Oh Christ, let me just re-read that…  a puppy orgy and a fat–free body? What an embarrassingly sexless fantasy life I have. I really am half dead.

On day 2, my roommate, Michelada, her cousin and I snorkeled all around Coconut Island (aka, the island they used as Gilligan’s in the opening shot of that show). It harbors a beautiful abundance of colorful fish and coral. Who needs “Finding Nemo” in 3D? I saw Dory no less than 10 times. (Yes, I have the marine biology knowledge of a Pixar-educated 4 yr old.) Fortunately, no one reminded me of the large hammerhead population in the bay until later that week.

We were pulled over by the jet ski police twice as they misguidedly thought we were spear fishing along the reef. They‘ve got to be better profilers than that, we are middle-aged, animal-loving (by the above puppy/kitten paragraph, pathetically so) haole women. I volunteer, “we’re not looking to harm anything, just see some pretty colors and pee out some wine”.  I’m not really sure that helped our case with the maritime Popo.

Michelada’s cousin has the curse of limitless jabber. One of those people where it’s so excessive that it becomes white noise. We better hope she is not the first to see an ocean predator because her warnings will get lost in the interminable mix — which is ironic because the blood leaking from our ears will undoubtedly draw them to us.

Now, we can all succumb to the mouthy muse at times. I can be a ruthless offender after my morning swim and coffee. Also, with each drink I get more verbose (up until I can’t form words, but rumor is, I have forged ahead in that inarticulate state regardless) and when I used to smoke weed, forget it, the first bong hit would have me motor mouthing like an auctioneer. But, as we swim, every time I pop my melon up to ensure we are still floating along together and no one’s being nailed by a hammerhead, I hear her non-stop yammer head. We are Darth Vadering thru the water with snorkels in our yaps, how in Neptune’s salty balls is she still talking?

After about an hour in the water, Michelada and I are shivering from a string of cold water pockets, slight dehydration and her cousin’s voice hammering in our knuckleheads, but our dingy driver chose this time to go back to the boat for a beer. I no longer need to look at the brain coral below the water’s surface because it is blossoming from each of my waterlogged fingertips. My own dehydrated brain coral starts to obsess about the movie “Open Water” — although we are right off an island in a bay full of boats. I suggest we get a stick and pretend to stab at the sea life so the police will come back and pick us up. Finally, we hear the telltale fart of the dingy motor and are soon whisked to the grilled sausage and dry crotched haven of the boat.

By the time the jets roar in for a landing, my roommate is searching up Capt. TC’s emergency stash jug of Yellow Tail Chardonnay that he made the mistake of telling us is hidden in his toolbox. When we pull into the dock close to sunset, we have drained every drop of wine on board and made several yellow-tailed trips to the head. We unload belongings and the diehards collect on deck to eat cookies washed down with silver bullets of Coors Light.

We look to the sky for the final air show of the day and watch the Polynesian full moon rise over the glittering ocean while etching out palm tree silhouettes in its brilliance. Every day I’m still in Hawaii is a good day, and this is a heavenly finish to a (blue) angelic day.

Wing Babe and the Miracle Skirt

I mentioned to a prospective wing girl the other night about a singles’ event I had no intention of attending. Unfortunately she took the bait (that I didn’t even mean to dangle) so we delved into a night of mating mayhem (again) courtesy of match.com.

On getting ready, I acknowledge my acute aversion to being over dressed or looking like I’ve tried too hard by wearing what could be a nice skirt if paired correctly, but I opt to wear it with a faded tank top. (Granted, overdressed in Hawaii is “shirts and shoes”.) The skirt has some special effects qualities though, as it somehow gives me a plum-shaped behind. My butt usually resides only on the front of my person so this is an unexpected coup.

I almost step into my $2 flip flops (aka, “slippahs” in HI pidgin) until my sidekick advises sandals. I inquire of the wing girl which pair of earrings I should don — the big honking orange disks or the dainty nuanced blue crystals. I lean toward the nuanced ones (because they are the opposite of my personality) but my fly girl promptly says to rock the orange donuts. I have apparently become an advice-needing “fashion don’t” that moves through these humid, unemployed island days in a style that could be referred to as street urchin laundry day and considers wearing earrings and mascara application a black tie undertaking. At this rate, my personal aesthetic is about a month away from cave woman.

The venue for this psychological challenge is the restaurant at the top of the Ilikai hotel in Waikiki. This hotel’s claim to fame is that it is featured in the opening of the original Hawaii Five-0. I believe McGarrett is standing atop the hotel in the opening montage — probably considering jumping if he’d just seen the ghastly dating options within that we witnessed.

This function has been listed online for almost a month but you’d think it was an impromptu gathering with the sore lack of planning at every turn. On arriving at the Ilikai, parking is a grid locked cluster. On getting off the elevator to the restaurant, there is a log jam at the host stand/registration desk. In residual NY’er “fuck that” form, I breeze past the desk with my girl in tow and hear, “they just walked in” which I later realize referred to us.  We get to the bar and the woman next to me says she followed us in, because she heard them turning people away saying they were over capacity. I exclaim that I did not go to the trouble of making myself look human and beating the parking odds to be refused access to this pool of mediocrity. Yes, it is already boring. But, I drove all the way over here for this unexceptional time and as Jack Lord as my witness, I’m going to not enjoy the shit out of it.

When you sign up for this circus online, it tells you how many men have rsvp’d (and as a male, you can see how many women have), so they must have a count and could shut registration down to prevent going over capacity. The event area is also populated with a couple high tops and a majority of sit down tables. Even this dimwit knows you set up the room with high tops and no chairs to encourage mingling. It seems the event coordination is being done by TSA.

Now that we are at the bar with drink in hand, we assess the considerably older crowd. In addition, there are about 5 women to every man (ha, Hawaii Five-1). This is further illustrated by the various 4-tops comprised of:  3 women exuding stank face while texting, 1-2 women emoting frozen-smiled interest and one guy in full-on show mode.

The men in attendance make the waiters and bartenders stand out like rock stars by comparison. We saw: a Hawaiian Elvis (seriously, Elvis’s 70’s hair and sideburns didn’t even look good on him), myriad examples of “trying too hard” and “matronly” plus we found ourselves feeling pity rather than attraction for anyone.

The older women alone in their semi-beauty pageant finery seemed like an alarming vision of my ghost of Christmas future. I start singing, “God bless you please, Ms.’s Havishams… Jesus loves you more than you will know… woe, woe, woe.” Sigh. Sniff. Super size my order of pills, please.

Wing babe and I start to play “If you had to” as in “If you had to pick one guy in the room”. It is not an easy call and takes most of our time in the establishment to finally discern. She picks a waiter and I pick a guy (at a table with 3 women – all sporting facades of rigid-smiled interest) who appears to be in his early 30’s which is all it takes to look exceptional in this crowd. For the love of bulbous butt cheeks, I wore my ass maker for this?

I tell the woman that followed us in to leave, because she is too hot (and young, at 33) to waste her time in this crowd. She has been in Hawaii for something like 7 weeks from Texas but since she is a mix of Native American and Mexican, she says she is already getting Kama’aina (local) discounts where ever she goes. My flat, blonde butt could live here for the next 50 years and still never be offered Kama’aina rates or acceptance.  (Oh well… everyone should have a taste of being the shunned minority in their lifetime.) The 3 of us decide to take a lap around the sideshows, or tables, and we lose her to a guy that was totally poised to run interception about 5 steps out.

Wing nut and I repair to a table and attempt to console ourselves with a slew of “at leasts” — like, “at least there is a great view although there is nothing to look at in here”, “at least we came out”, “at least we’re not wearing that”, “at least someone invented alcohol”, etc. On that latter point, I am contemplating licking the table where a couple drops of my wine spilled while waiting for the delivery of my next red, when two guys come up and ask if they can join us.

Now, I do not have a type but I do have some preferences. I can go as low as 5’7” if the guy is muscular but the actual cut off is about 5’ 8.5”. I just don’t want to physically be the “bigger one”. I have friends that are 5’ 2” and talk about how they aren’t attracted to guys under 6’. To me, that’s just short girl greed — 5’ 8” would still tower over them. Anyhow, Hawaii is not the place to have a height requirement… few men here are tall enough to ride this ride. Wing gal is the same height as me, but she can go considerably shorter without issue, buddha bless her.

So, when the diminutive Japanese and Korean guys sit down with us, she sees this as more of an opportunity than I do (I’m thinking, “mother of god, the little hands!”) and prior to our departure, gives one of the guys her number. I casually work my height requirement into the conversation so we know how we (literally) stand on my side of the table.

Part of our tableside chat involves the cultural differences in Hawaii and how brash NYer’s are not looked on fondly in the land of aloha. I am told that while I am funny, I should take it down a notch for the sake of assimilation. Not surprisingly, my mother has been giving me the same advice for years in order to assimilate into my own gender.

Finally, my wine and attention span are gone and my eyes have become blinking blue vacancy signs. It is go time (but not in the about to sky dive exciting way).

On the way to the car, “Thelma” reveals that her guy said they approached us because they liked her hair and thought I was pretty. I’ll take that over cougar-ish any day – yet, while happy to know her follicles still “got it”, that backhanded compliment had my gal on a brief self-deprecating jag (as opposed to my lifelong one).

In the car home, we hatch a plan to hit some bars for a once-a-month foray into “getting out there”. We decide to do this because that contrived singles’ mess was too depressing and it’s not like a guy is going to just walk through our living rooms as we sit home each night – unless they’re firemen or paramedics. (I am not advising lighting your bathroom on fire and using 911 as a dating hotline — yet.)