Honolulu Lite
Charles Memminger

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Ice age hits islands,
or so it seems

Hawaii residents are such spoiled weenies when temperatures dip a bit, like during this current cold snap.

I was thinking that as I sit here in my long underwear, blizzard survival vest, Alpine wool hat and, wait, my hands are freezing. Let me put on my Arctic mittens.

Lksjo jdksu jdisld skdgj.

That's not going to work. Ah, these Patagonia glacier gloves will do much better. Now, where were we? Oh, yeah, baby it's cold outside.

The weather dude says it only got down to 62 degrees last night, but obviously that's out by the airport and not in Kaneohe where there was frost on the plumerias when I woke up. At least there was frost on the plumeria branches. It's been so cold lately the plumeria trees across the island have shed their leaves and blossoms. I expect mistletoe to erupt on them soon.

You hear all the warnings about global warming but where is it when you need it? I was out on my deck spraying various aerosol cans to see if I could speed up the process. I want global warming now, before the mynah birds start migrating to Costa Rica. I saw this poor mynah bird in my neighbor's tree. His little beak was chattering like Barcelona castanets.

OK. WE ARE kind of spoiled when it comes to cold weather in Hawaii. The record coldest temperature for Oahu occurred, I believe, in my bed last night at about 3 a.m. That's when I dreamed I was huddled in a snowbank hugging a (slobbering) grizzly bear, only to wake up and discover my dog Boomer had climbed into bed with my wife and me.

Actually, the coldest it's been on Oahu is in the 40s in places like Wahiawa.

The record low for Honolulu was 58 degrees in 1996. But you have to remember, that with the wind chill factor, that means it's actually 20 below zero. You know it's cold in Honolulu when a Sherpa guide meets you in the elevator to help you to your office.

On Mauna Kea it is 10 degrees below zero. But that's just because when you're "on" Mauna Kea, you're actually "in" the Earth's upper atmosphere. It isn't truly part of the "island" environment. That's more part of the "outer space" environment, which is why they put all those telescopes up there.

How long will this tropical Ice Age last? Apparently, a mongoose just came out of his garbage can and saw his shadow and a frozen gecko. That means, don't put your aloha-print long underwear away just yet.

Charles Memminger, the National Society of Newspaper Columnists' 2004 First Place Award winner for humor writing, appears Sundays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. E-mail cmemminger@starbulletin.com

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