Saturday, October 22, 2005

Early Morning Ramblings

Friday the 21st was a rare day when I couldn't even blog a wee bit. The demands of work were such that I couldn't sneak off and throw a few thoughts down just to scratch the blotch (I just coined that version, blog + itch = blotch). I guess it sounds dirty, but it's not. Anyway, the amazing vomiting wondercat Goblin was apparently so distraught over my lack of a post for Friday, he decided to regurgitate me awake. Hmm. Again, sounds icky, but don't take it literally.
So, faced with the prospect of cleaning up catspew, hear I am, blogged in.

First of all...hello loyal readers. Thanks for your e-mails and your posted comments. I encourage those of you who have not posted comments to do so, if anything, just to say hi. For example, later in this post, when I start talking about strippers, please feel free to post a comment about how that offends you. Or not.

Second of all, I have started a new book: House of Thieves. It is a book of short stories by Hawai'i-raised author Kaui Hart Hemmings. You can read the New York Times book review here. I have only read the first story, "The Minor Wars," and am in the middle of the second. So far, I like very much. First of all, they are stories set in Hawai'i. Secondly, they're dark, containing what the Times' reviewer calls "a New England winter's worth of dysfunction and gloom." I had just read the review last month in the paper when I heard from my rabbi that he had just read the book and was extremely impressed by its depth. For me, there is an extra bonus, as the subjects originate in Hawai'i. A little online research reveals that Ms. Hemmings attended Punahou School (bitter rival to my Iolani). That gives Punahou a 2-0 edge in the established literary writer race, with co-alumna Allegra Goodman in the Buff-N-Blue's corner. Am I the Red Raiders only hope? Hardly, I would guess, but two fiction writers trump a poet, and I am not on pace to win a Nobel in Literature, at any rate.

I digress. Check out the book. Dem Punahou girls know fo write. As long as I'm plugging Hawai'i lit. Iolani's prestigious Keables chair was held this past year by journalist-fiction writer-playwright Lee Cataluna. Ms. Cataluna wrote a marvelous book of short story/anecdotes called Folks You Meet in Longs and other stories. It is written mostly in Pidgin and is published by Bamboo Ridge Press.

Ok, I realize I cannot put off the catspew much longer. SO high-brow, eh, this blog? Sheesh, too much talk about Hawaii books and da Pidgin wen start creeping in, eh?

Yesterday I wanted to post the front cover headline for Gotham's Daily News. I missed the opportunity so you'll all have to close your eyes and use your imagination. Well, don't close them yet. Read the headline and then close your eyes. It was: LAP DUNCE.
The story, which still leads today's edition of the paper, but under the less-inspiring headline "OH, WHAT A NIGHT!", has to deal with American Express suing a business man who ran up a $241,000 bill at Scores, a popular and exclusive "gentleman's club." That's two hundred and forty-one thousand dollars. At a strip club. Supposedly in one night. Here's a priceless quote:

Scores spokesman Lonnie Hanover said "We can't go to a customer and say, 'Are you sure you want to spend another $50,000?' He would be insulted. If they are millionaires and they are sober, they are free to spend."

There have been many disputes over this, at least three separate lawsuits against Scores for their priceyness, including this gem of a case:

"Insurance executive Mitchell Blaser filed suit against the club in May 2004 after being handed a bill for $28,000.

Scores said he charged five magnums of fancy champagne at $3,200 a pop and paid for 350 lap dances by as many as 12 strippers.

Blaser, the 53-year-old chief financial officer of Swiss Re's Americas division, claimed he was intimidated into signing a fraudulent bill."

Obviously, I think this hilarious. And worthy of being a front-page news item too. And the perfect anecdote to any literary highbrow-ness this post started off with.

Damn cat.

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