Alo-Ha! Friday

Charles Memminger

Traffic study stuck
in the wrong lane

A new study says the "average" Honolulu driver spends 18 hours a year in traffic. That's supposed to be pretty good, considering the national average is 46 hours a year.

That study, out of Texas, has got to be wrong. Anytime you are going to or from work in Honolulu, you are in traffic. And if you are coming in from the Windward side or Kapolei, that means you spend AT LEAST 30 minutes in traffic each way. If I'm figuring the math correctly, that means Honoluluans spend 140,000 hours a year in traffic. Wait. No. That's not right. It means they spend about 293 hours in traffic each year. Unless the Texas researchers consider "traffic" as gridlock, when you aren't moving at all. In that case, island drivers spend 287 hours in traffic.

Now the news ...

Speaking of traffic jams

OSLO, Norway (AP) » Renathe Opedal was hopelessly stuck in traffic during rush hour when an overeager traffic attendant slapped her with a $95 parking ticket.

The 32-year-old driver took the case to court, where she not only beat the ticket but was awarded $765 for costs.

According to the Kristiansand District Court, the city parking attendant misunderstood the situation and thought Opedal had caused the traffic jam by parking illegally.

(The attendant was unable to explain how Opedal had managed to stop not only the cars behind her but also the 328 cars stalled ahead of her.)

Gun safety demo a blast

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) » A gun safety demonstration went awry when Monroe County Coroner David Toumey shot himself in the leg.

Toumey said his gun discharged as he was checking to make sure it was unloaded during a demonstration to a group of people at Lake Monroe.

"It's an unfortunate accident," he said after being released from the hospital for treatment of the wound. "I've always been very, very safe."

(Except for that other time when he was giving an autopsy demonstration and accidentally removed his own gall bladder.)

Oil and interns don't mix

STEYR, Austria (AP) » A medical intern at a western Austria hospital mistakenly injected an elderly patient with olive oil instead of antibiotics after mixing up bedside vials.

The mix-up happened when the intern reached for the wrong vial and injected the patient with olive oil that had been prepared by the hospital physiotherapist for a massage.

The patient, a 79-year-old woman in the hospital for an appendectomy, was not in a life threatening condition, according to doctors.

(But she confessed to have a strong craving for vinegar, spinach leaves and croutons.)

Honolulu Lite on Sunday:
How will we ever establish a really good police state if our basic street surveillance equipment keeps breaking?

Quote Me On This (Rod & Gun Club Edition):
"I have hunted deer on occasion, but they were not aware of it." -- Felix Gear

"A fishing rod is a stick with a worm at one end and a fool at the other." -- Samuel Johnson

"A sportsman is a man who, every now and then, simply has to go out and kill something." -- Stephen Leacock

See the Columnists section for some past articles.

Charles Memminger, winner of National Society
of Newspaper Columnists awards, appears
Tuesdays, Thursdays , Fridays and Sundays.
E-mail cmemminger@starbulletin.com



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