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Brief asides


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POSTED: Tuesday, May 26, 2009

HOLY ROLLER

'Golden Arm' remains legend in Las Vegas

His record may be broken, but the late Stanley Fujitake of Honolulu remains a legend in Las Vegas, where his three-hour, six-minute streak at a craps table earned him the nickname “;Golden Arm.”; He set the mark for the longest craps roll on May 28, 1989, at the California Hotel and Casino, where a plaque memorializes the feat. Fujitake was a regular at the California, which more than made up in publicity what it had to pay out for his 118 rolls of the dice. Fujitake's record fell Saturday night to a novice shooter in Atlantic City, N.J., who rolled 154 times over four hours and 18 minutes.

SHORELINE SWEEP

Scoring points for stand-up paddlers

Stand-up paddlers are helping the environment and their burgeoning sport by cleaning up marine debris as they exercise.

About 50 stand-up paddlers turned out for a Maunalua Bay cleanup on Sunday, sprucing up East Oahu's nearshore waters and creating good publicity for a sport not always beloved by other ocean enthusiasts—particularly swimmers—vying for space in sometimes crowded waters.

FROG FOLLIES

Coqui cacophony continues

They're little, but pack a huge audio wallop. And they apparently have won the war.

Armies of coqui frogs have spread quickly and far and wide, going from an isolated regional pest to statewide disturbance in a few short years. Anyone who has traveled regularly to Hilo, Puna or Kona in recent years has noticed the cacophony growing louder, and more pervasive, with time.

Noise isn't the only problem; the frogs are seen as real dangers to native insect species. Those were main reasons why officials were trying to contain the frogs' spread. But now, officials on the Big Island are ending their effort, due to tight budgetary times.

The frogs make raucous birdlike chirps or whistles, which come like clockwork when the sun starts setting and don't stop for hours into the night. The noise levels have been measured at up to 80-90 decibels, comparable to that from a lawnmower, says the state Agriculture Department.

Go on the Web and take a listen at http://www.hear.org/AlienSpeciesInHawaii/ species/frogs/index.html. The online audio can be turned off; not so, alas, in real life for those folks in afflicted areas.