Put outrigger canoes, surfboards in Games
Why is there no outrigger canoe racing or surfing in the Olympic Games? Both are cultural sports as well as "Xtreme" sports and should be in the Olympics.
Since the fall of Troy there has been a notable Western civilization bias that has gradually led to the inclusion of games, stunts and beach volleyball. So where is the aloha. Let's all who live in Hawaii call for 12 canoe racing events in the London Olympics in 2012. The best surfers in the world, supported by Quicksilver, Roxy, Billabong and Surf magazine, could throw in some marketing muscle to a campaign for the "sport of kings" to be finally recognized for the high-level athletic sport it has always been. It is more a sport than curling, you must agree.
It is time for Hawaii to look beyond our shores and assert our culture globally, a culture of peace and aloha, rooted in a oneness with nature, and maybe one day a Hawaiian will be on the medal stand at the second-best sporting event in the world.
Spend on students, not teacher 'conferences'
I agree with Mary Esther Correa in Ewa Beach (Letters, Aug. 20)
regarding the need to demand more from our teachers. During my stint as a behavioral specialist at Kailua High School, I saw several teachers and administrators travel off island and out of state for "conferences" and such with funds that seemed to simply materialize out of thin air. As the adult adviser for the school's drama club, I couldn't get a penny from the school's administration to buy copies of scripts or anything. When I tried to organize fundraisers, I was buried in red tape and blocked at every turn while others who were apparently on the principal's "favorite" list were able to access funds with ease.
After almost four years, I couldn't take it anymore and transferred to another state agency. I don't know who is supposed to be performing the checks and balances on the spending by the Department of Education and Board of Education, but they have been obviously sleeping on the job!
Bulky item pickup leaves Oahu a mess
This letter is to address a major problem we have with all the toilets, mattresses, refrigerators, building materials and other junk cluttering our streets here on Oahu. It is an eyesore and a hazard that has gotten out of control. No neighborhood is excluded from this. What started out by the city to assist residents with the discarding of unwanted bulky items has turned into a situation of complete irresponsibility and disregard for our neighbors and our island.
Why is it the city's responsibility to haul away everybody's junk? What about personal responsibility? And now that the city has implemented this program, why are the rules not enforced? Why are residents allowed to set their junk on the streets any time of the month without consequence?
The city needs to implement new rules, fines and consequences for not abiding by the rules. Something must be done. What do our tourists think when they see all this trash littering our streets? Our economy is very dependent on tourism dollars. Everyone, please speak up ... this is an unacceptable way to live and it is not getting any better.
Gas station attendant helped save the day
I'd like to thank the young woman who helped me get home Monday afternoon. I had a short string of bad luck that started with losing my bank card. A new one is a week away, and I needed gas. I got to the bank just a minute after they closed and so I couldn't use a counter check.
My pockets turned up just a buck and a half in loose change and I stopped at the nearest gas station. I counted out my money on the counter while telling my tale. Out at my car, I got gas from the pump, and even made sure there wasn't a drop left in the hose. I made it home. I save all my receipts, and as I started to file the gasoline receipt, I noticed she had rung me up for $2.50.
You know who you are and I thank you for the aloha.
Maglev trains don't live up to expectations
Lately we have heard magnetic levitation bounced around as a possible alternative consideration to light rail. A letter to the editor on Aug. 3
referred to maglev as "cheaper and better." For me that was the last straw.
There are only three working maglev systems in the world -- one each in China, Japan and Germany. Both Japan and Germany's maglevs are still only research projects, with China's being the only one providing limited public service, as it is often broken. With so little service history, how can anyone say maglev is cheap? To the contrary, it cannot be anything but wildly expensive and frivolous.
I installed, certified and serviced molecular beam epitaxy instruments in the 1980s at just about every major research laboratory in the United States. These were used for superconductive materials research. Maglev and superconductivity went hand in hand. Had we been able to develop high-temperature superconductors, maglevs would have become easily affordable. Electronics as we know it would be transformed. Unfortunately, we have not been able to create high-temperature superconductive materials.
I find it strange to hear maglev bandied about as a cheap transportation alternative. It is more like a Ferrari, a dream ride with high-maintenance costs.