Monday, December 26, 2005

Hawaii 2005

Home from Hawaii where even bad news is delivered by newscasters in Aloha shirts. It was a fabulous trip with the usual Levine family foibles.

NEVER take Hawaiian Airlines. In a world a lackadaisical don’t-give-a-shit airline employees Hawaiian is the gold standard. It’s bad enough our luggage didn’t arrive with the flight. Neither did the bags for half the passengers. And this was true of EVERY Hawaiian flight. Seems they sort of put on the bags they want and hold back others. Or put bags on earlier flights and just leave them in the terminal as sort of a fun scavenger hunt. Their motto should be: “Striving to be America West”.

We went back to the Grand Wailea on Maui – picture a combination of the Bellagio and Disney’s Blizzard Beach Water Slide Park.

We have a “Mountain view” room and by “Mountain” they mean the Four Seasons next door. I can now tell you which Endeavor agents sleep late.

Quickly unpacked, leaving a drawer empty for all the coffee packets, soap, conditioners, shampoos, and pens we planned to steal. No sewing kits this year. Those bastards!!

Went to sleep after a long travel day only to discover our room is only two floors right above the Tsunami night club. Is it just me or should they consider a name change? I’d change rooms but where else am I going to hear pidgin hip hop…as it was meant to be heard -- through the floor?

Annie’s was very excited about the GAP Winter Sale. Needless to say there wasn’t a single heavy coat, ski sweater, or scarf they were out of at the Wailea GAP.

Second day there I saw a schmuck wearing a CAA T-shirt. It flashed me back to years ago at the Kahala Hilton when I saw someone else wearing one of those. Remember as a kid you would put a comic book inside a real book so the teacher thought you were reading something worthwhile? In this case, sitting around the pool, this CAA tool was reading a book hidden inside a SCRIPT.

Went to make massage reservations at the spa. Was told they were having a “big promotion”. If you use this brand of massage oil they were hawking that smells like cinnamon and vanilla you get a whole $5.00 off their $155 massage. You’d be an IDIOT not to take advantage of that deal!

I don’t think the University of Nevada (Reno) will be asked back to the Hawaiian Bowl anytime soon. This annual football classic held Christmas Eve at Aloha Stadium (capacity: 50,000) and televised nationally on ESPN is a great source of pride to the islands. Three days before the game here’s how many tickets the University of Nevada (Reno) has purchased: 75.

We wanted to drive around the island but knew that LOST star Michelle Rodriquez was still on the road. 108 is not just the sum total of the “numbers”, it’s her average speed.

How do they make dippindots?

Annie received a fortune that said seek professional help.

One thing I miss: dogs. There is a long quarantine for pets coming over to Hawaii. Concern for the citizens. I say let Fluffy in and keep Michelle Rodriguez locked up for six months.

My neighbor from across the street is here. It’s the only time I’ve seen her in two years.

Went to Spago’s at the Four Season with writer friends Howard & Karen. We let the kids fend for themselves. A half hour into dinner I get a call from Annie. “Hey, Dad, turn around. Look to your left.” My first thought was “what the fuck are they doing at Spago? This is going to cost me a fortune!” My second thought was “where are they?” I told Annie I didn’t see them. She said, “more to your left. We’re waving.” I still couldn’t see them. Now I’m panicking. Jesus, am I going blind? This went on for two more minutes. Finally she said, “We’re at Longhi’s, have a nice dinner”, they laughed and hung up. I love my children but they’re evil.

Saw KING KONG at the Kihei Cineplex. A sign on the door said “shirts and footwear required”. Bad enough the movie was three hours, it started fifteen minutes late. The projectionist was busy manning the concession counter. The “Aloha Spirit” is a nice way of saying “We wish you would go home”.

Went to a new restaurant called “The Place”. It was a twenty-five minute drive (four for Michelle Rodriguez). The bartender and chef are from the Four Seasons’ Spago. So are the pizza recipes. And it’s right next to the Aquarium so you know the fresh fish is FRESH.

Cabana prices have gone up to $200 a day. The most expensive shade in Hawaii. And you can make reservations a year in advance. For only $100 you can reserve cloud cover.

My wife and daughter decided to skip the bike ride to the bottom of the volcano. Instead they went to Costco.

Hard to swim laps in the “adult pool” when there are people standing in the middle of it reading paperbacks. At least they weren’t reading scripts.

Preferred reading material this year: Debby’s shirt. She has a T-shirt filled with stupid quotes our buffoon of a President actually said. Some favorites:

“People say: ‘How can I help on this war against terror? How can I fight evil?’ You can do so by mentoring a child; by going into a shut-in’s house and say – ‘I love you’.

“Natural gas is hemispheric. I like to call it hemispheric because it is a product that we can find in our neighborhoods.”

“We ought to make the pie higher”.

“History?…we don’t know. We’ll all be dead.”

“One of the great things about books is that sometimes there are some fantastic pictures.”

“I’m the master of low expectations”.

And finally….”They misunderestimated me”.

A tourist was bitten by a shark 200 yards from our beach. So all beaches along the immediate coast were closed for a day…except the one that fronts the Four Seasons. Guess they figured with all the Hollywood agents there no shark would ever attack – professional courtesy.

Got in an elevator as a woman was pushing the button. She wore a baseball cap with an “L” on it. I asked what the L stood for and she said “lobby”. Do I really look THAT stupid??

The Aloha Spirit continues: at every Hawaiian airport in addition to the usual TSA inspections (take off your shoes, belt, pull out your computer, remove your pacemaker) they also feature two additional agriculture inspections (one for check-in luggage and one more at the gate for carry on). God forbid a papaya gets into the United States. The terrorists win.

And yes, we saw Santa Claus this year. This time in a golf cart tooling around the Maui airport tarmac. So that’s where he gets all his toys and goodies – from all the Hawaiian Airlines luggage that never arrives to you.


Christina said...

Their motto should be: Striving to be America West.

Lol! I HATE America West. And now, I'll never fly Hawaiian....

By Ken Levine said...

Then I've done my job.

Anonymous said...

I wish you many more bad vacations in Hawaii because it is great fun reading your comments! Did Woody say "comedy is tragedy plus time"? Or something like that... Anyway, you are a GREAT writer!

writergurl said...

Got in an elevator as a woman was pushing the button. She wore a baseball cap with an “L” on it. I asked what the L stood for and she said “lobby”.

I gather there were a lot of industry people staying at your hotel and hogging the cabanas. IF the woman was wearing a ballcap with a pink "L" then it probably stood for "L Word". That's their logo. It's usually a hot pink "L" on a black (occasionally white) background. (That kind of snarky remark would be de rigueur coming from someone associated with "the L word" since they maintain that the "L" could stand for anything.)

IF it was an "L" within a circle, and multicolored then it's probably the logo for the newest "all gay, all da time" network called "Logo". Don't ask ME why they called a gay tv channel "Logo" it makes no sense to me. But, there's two possible explainations for the "L" on the woman's ball cap.

Both logos are easy to google... if you care.

Thanks for being so entertaining and informative, I enjoy your blog immensely!

Piers said...

You may also care to check out poetry, composed purely from the sayings of the President.,12271,807587,00.html

Marc Mielke said...

You really need to go into Kahului for a moviegoing experience. I'm about three blocks from the Kihei Cineplex and never go there.

The Maui Mall theaters are actually THX-rated.