Brief asides


POSTED: Friday, December 18, 2009


Savor sweet smell of the season

O Christmas tree, o Christmas tree …

Yes, it's a mere week before Christmas and the day is fast approaching — but for some, it's just not the holidays without a real tree smack dab in the living room. And darn it if the tree shortage didn't catch many off guard.

For such souls, good news: Some 1,050 fresh noble and Douglas firs arrived yesterday at Richard Tajiri's Christmas Hawaii site at Ala Moana Center near Sears. But low supply-high demand economics being what it is, potential buyers from across town might first want to check on availability before setting out; call 591-8733.

And for the truly last-minute buyers, take note: Many stores have lights and decorations on sale, 50 percent off. Just don't be surprised if it's slim pickings on the trimmings.



Too heavy for the stocking, but statistically still a fine gift

Still shopping for last-minute Christmas gifts? Somebody you know might like a copy of the U.S. Census Bureau's Statistical Abstract of the United States. Really. Popularly known as “;Uncle Sam's Almanac,”; it's perennially the federal government's best-selling reference book and has been published since 1878.

The 2010 edition contains more than 1,400 tables of social, political and economic facts that collectively describe the state of our nation and the world.

To access the data online, or to order a hard-cover edition, check www.census.gov and click on Statistical Abstract.