Friday, March 21, 2008

I'm such a sucker

Anybody need a newspaper?

So there I was, working with the saw out in the front yard, cutting out the design on ES's pinewood derby car. [Aside: Yes, ES is participating in making his car, but I was doing the cutting with the saw.] I see this pretty middle-school-aged girl in a red and black dress start at the end of our street with a clipboard in her hand, going door to door.

When she walks up to my house, she's very perky and smiling and asks if I'd like a free copy of the Honolulu Advertiser. I said, "No, thanks!" She said, okay, thank you, and proceeded on to the next house.
Tangent: I haven't picked up a paper newspaper in I don't know how long. Am I the only one who thinks paper newspapers are totally useless? At least in a neighborhood where every house has at least one if not two or three computers with high-speed access to the internet and all the news they want - tailored to their interests no less. Why would I pick up a hard-copy newspaper? I do pick up the Navy Times in hard-copy, but that's mostly so I have something to read in the bathroom. For day-to-day current events and news, I read it all on the internet. Anyway, back to the story...
Fast forward ten minutes or so later. I see the once-perky, previously-smiling little girl slowly walking back up the street, hugging her clipboard to her chest, with a look of sadness on her face like she was about to cry. My heart sank. As she walked by on the other side of the street in front of my house, I stopped sawing and called across the street to her, "Any luck?" (already knowing the answer from her body language). She continued shuffling her feet walking on up the street, but slowly turned her head toward me and shook her head no. So, in spite of the fact that I have absolutely NO need for a free copy of the Honolulu Advertiser, I asked her what I had to give her in return for my "free" copy of the newspaper.

Her face lit up. "Really???" she said as her sad face spread into a smile from ear to ear. She proceeded to give me her schpeal about what a great deal she could offer me on the newspaper and that some percentage of what she sold went into her college fund. She asked if she could interest me in the $5 option for 4 weeks of Friday, Saturday, and Sunday papers.

I gave in and gave her the five bucks. I have no idea what I'll do with the newspapers other than toss them in the trash (sad, I know - they don't recycle here). It was worth it though from the expression of joy on her face. I think it really made her day.

I'm such a sucker. I've often wondered if I have the word "gullible" tatooed on my forehead because I have a tendency to be too trusting of human nature and allow strangers to take advantage of me.

LW is going to laugh at me when she gets home. (She's off getting that pedicure she's been wanting for weeks).

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Family Movie Night

Friday for family movie night, we went waaaaay back and watched Space Camp (1986!!). OMG! That was SO bizarre seeing Lea Thompson and Kelly Preston as teenagers (17 and 16 years old respectively). Man, I had such a crush on Lea Thompson back when Back to the Future came out (1985). There's another classic movie we need to add to our family movie night list - Back to the Future.

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Ford Island Bike Ride

Saturday morning, I took ES on a 10-mile bike ride around Ford Island and back. It was about 2 miles over to Ford Island, about 6 miles going around Ford Island (roughly following the path of the Ford Island 10K I ran last fall), then 2 miles back home. ES did great. It was a decent workout for me, and I think ES had fun, too. I got to point out several things that I saw and learned on the Remembrance Tour that ES couldn't go on (no kids under 8 allowed), like the spot where USS NEVADA ran aground to make sure they wouldn't block the channel for other ship's that were able to get underway.

Self-portrait on a stop during our bike ride around Ford Island.

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Pinata Observations

We went to a friend's birthday party and they had a pinata for the kids. I cringed when I saw it because I had recently read the A Team's post about the dangers of pinatas and blindfolded, aluminum-bat-swinging, sugar-hyped small children.

I don't know if this is some sort of universal truth, but I made an interesting observation. Somehow when the kids got in line, all the little boys were first and all the little girls came second. When the boys swung the stick, they all swung it like it was a bat, and they kept hitting and hitting and hitting that pinata from the side, but didn't break it open. When the little girls swung the stick, they swung it over their head like an axe or sledge hammer. They kept beating DOWN onto it, and the rope holding it up couldn't take it. It wasn't long after the girls got up to bat that the pinata was ripped off the hoist rope - still structurally entact mind you, but not attached to the hoist anymore.

Why is it the boys swing it sideways like a bat and the girls swing it over their head like an axe? Has anyone else noticed this phenomenon?

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Discovery Channel

ES has figured out that the Discovery Channel is pretty darn cool. There are all sorts of shows about military equipment, nasty, muddy, yucky, disgusting jobs, and smashing stuff up. It's very fitting for that destructive little-boy obsession with things that go bang. It seems like the TV has been on in the background continuously on the Discovery Channel all day.

I'm glad though, because I just saw this really cool show on secure internet commerce,, eBay, and stuff. They showed a really cool, simple analogy that explained how Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) works, and it makes SO much more sense to me now! I understood the basic concepts of it before, but they did a much better job of explaining it in simpler terms that just about anybody could understand.


Jud said...

Sunday. Coffee. Stephanopoulos. The NY Times. And my kids are too busy playing video games to interrupt. That's worth $5.

Otherwise, I'm with you, I read it all on-line. I do tend to look at the pictures, however. And I work in the business for a paper in the same chain at the Advertiser.

So thanks for your support Kev!

Nereus said...

You might grow to enjoy having the Paper in hand. I fell for the same sad story when I was on island, Took the paper and for the most part enjoyed the comfort of reading it in the "Executive Board Room" (Head). There are several things you can do to make good use of the print after a once over.
1. Great window cleaning material. Windex and Newspaper will make the glass in you abode shiney and new.
2. Seeing that you have 2 sons, I am sure that there is no end to the need for cheap "Drop Cloths" to minimize the mess and stains.
3. WHAT?? Hawaii isn't recycling Newsprint?? When I was there I gladly dumped the unused and unneeded Newspaper in the Recycle dumpster and away it went.

IF it is any help, The HI garbage is used to make power, (Burned for to make steam and 'trons) before the ashes are dumped on the west side. So, in it's own way; even if you put it in the regular dumpster, it will do some good.