Wood Craft

By Ben Wood

Diesel picture really goes
to the extreme

Being an Eastwood fan I went to the Ward theater complex Sunday afternoon to see Clint's latest, "Blood Work," but it was sold out. Vin Diesel's "XXX" was playing on three screens so I joined the young crowd and went to see if Diesel and his extreme action pic deserve all the hype. After 15 minutes of the extremely loud noise and extreme violence, I was ready to walk out. But I'm glad I didn't. His character is no James Bond but after getting into the film, I began to warm to the muscular, grungy Diesel in his secret agent role, despite the ear-busting soundtrack. The special effects and stunts performed by Diesel and an army of stunt men are incredible. But in comparison with Bond films, which I'll always savor, I'm not sure if I can take a steady Diesel diet ...

Wedding bells

Malia Simonds, Punahou '92 and daughter of John and Kitty Simonds, married "60 Minutes II" associate producer Elliot Kirschner at the Maui Prince last Saturday. Retired Judge Boyd Mossman officiated. Hau'ula -- Tarvin  Makia and Wayne Kamakeeaina -- played music. The newlyweds met six years ago when she was attending Holy Cross and he was at Harvard. Malia is administrative director of the Public Art Fund, which installs art in public spaces throughout New York City. Her brother, Max, Punahou '90, was a groomsman and hospitality room specialist. Her dad was the executive editor of the Star-Bulletin. Her mom is the exec director of the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council. Kirschner's dad, Dr. Marc Kirschner, chairs Harvard Medical School's Cell Biology Dept. His mother, Dr. Phyllis Kirschner, is a university educator. Dutchy Saffery gave a hula class during the reception and about 50 guests, mostly happy visitors, danced ...

Former Star-Bulletin intern John Titchen married Barbara Alfano June 22 in an island-style ceremony at the Alfano home in San Diego. The San Diego Island Boys played Hawaiian music. John's parents, Jack and Kathy Titchen, both worked for the Bulletin, Jack as a photographer and Kathy as a reporter. John was a former Kaiser High and U. of California San Diego athlete. He is a Coast Guard officer and will attend Naval Flight School in Pensacola, Fla. ...

The Honolulu Symphony will perform in "Musica de Italia at Villa La Pietra," a benefit for Hawaii School for Girls, at 6:30 p.m. on Sept. 8. tickets are $45, $25 tax deductible, and include dessert and coffee. Guests may bring picnic baskets for the evening under the stars. Reserved tables for 10 or more will be available ...

Ellises honored

The Academy of Arts Board will name a new gallery for Philippine art after Academy Director George Ellis and wife, Nancy. George retires in late January. Tickets, $75, for the Academy's Showcase fund-raiser tomorrow, 6 to 8:30 p.m., will be sold at the door .... Child's Play, the children's educational toys and learning materials store in Ward Warehouse, is celebrating its 20th anniversary this weekend with activities for youngsters ... Howard Yoshina's name was spelled Yoshino here recently. Sorry ...

Ben Wood, who sold the Star-Bulletin in the streets
of downtown Honolulu during World War II, writes of
people, places and things every Saturday.
E-mail him at

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