Just asking …

If Hollywood filmmakers are seeking hefty discounts and insider tax incentives to shoot projects  in Hawaii – vs. other tropical sites such as Mexico or the Caribbean – shouldn’t state regulators  consider new mandatory requirements to ensure mutually beneficial perks?

One consideration might be to require, when possible, at least a secondary role for union actors from Hawaii to gain an edge to audition for a part on camera. Instead of a Maori from New Zealand to play someone local, why not a genuine local?

So often, shows are cast before setting shop on our shores, while we have a stable of eager performers hungry for work. Local behind-the-scenes techies are regularly hired; why not on camera participants, too? Then, it might be a win-win situation. The attitude that we don’t have talent here is so untrue.

The last and only TV show to hire fresh island faces for secondary leads was the original “Hawaii Five-0,” giving Al Harrington and Zulu a huge opportunity to strut their stuff. The only current islander (though now a Los Angeles resident) is Anthony Ruivivar, who plays the husband of lead agent Vanessa Lachery in “NCIS: Hawaii.” His role is recurring, but limited.  Technically,  Amy Hill of the rebooted “Magnum P.I.” (she plays Tutui) is not a local, but now sorta is, since she has bought a condo, which makes her a part-time resident but she lives and talks like  one us anyway.

The query: Don’t you think Hawaii-based shows, notably TV, should hire more resident actors? …


Where do you go for your apple fritter these days?

Treated myself to McCafe’s @ McDonald’s apple fritter. At $2.99, it’s worth the cost — it’s huge, laden with flicks of apples inside the doughnut, and it’s all properly cinnamon-flavored … and the outside texture, with sugary coat and apple bits, make it a winner.

The best apple fritter — oughtta call it the McFritter — is at McDonald’s McCafe.

I think it’s the best in its field. Napoleon Bakery at Zippy’s has had its version, which is no competition. Safeway bakeries used to have a contender; now, its fritter is a critter not worth buying, if you can even find one since the inventory is lean.

So If you’re a fritter fan, where do you go for your sugar fix?


Just asking…

What was the prevailing board game while you were growing up?

The one I  mostly played was Monopoly…have had several board sets over the years, including the Hawaiian edition.

If you played Monopoly, you needed family and friends to make the competish fun.

What was your favorite token, or charm, or kini, as locals called ‘em. I liked the thimble and the top hat, for no particular reason.

What’s your take on your fave game board?


Just asking…

Wondering if today’s kids play the string-based game called Cat’s Cradle anymore?

When I was growing up time – back when dinosaurs ruled the Earth – everyone engaged in this simple but complex game, where a long, knotted string – we used to use those slightly thicker cords, in lieu of weaker thread-like strings for crocheting – is placed on both bands, and different motifs are formed.

More girls than boys played this string game.

The task can involve four hands, and even six, at a higher level of complication.

The string can be placed from one hand to another, with fingers taking over, leading up to somewhat tricky configurations.

Online books and video – not a visual tool, back in the day – now demonstrate what and how the cradle can stimulate fun and competition, without actual toys or action figures or iPads.

The string’s the thing.



Just asking…

Remember stand-alone movie theaters?

Before the arrival of mega-plex movie theaters, there used to be your community go-to-place for film-watching. One screen only.

Palama Theatre

And it worked: screens in Kaimuki, Liliha, Kapahulu, Kailua, Kewalo, Kuhio (in Waikiki), Waikiki, Palama, Aala, etc. Titles rotated – though the Kuhio and Waikiki were deemed first-run spaces, becoming road show sites with extended showings of hit titles.

Kewalo Theatre

Other theaters had names like Royal, King, Queen, Princess, Liberty, Cinerama, Roosevelt, Golden Wall instead of place-oriented names.

Multi-plexes – sites with anywhere from six to 10 screens – are the norm now, offering choices of films and even luxe seats. And higher prices, for everything, from admission to snack bar items.