What's happened to Kalakaua Avenue?

December 28th, 2010
By

After going through a $115-million renovation, the Royal Hawaiian Center is ready for it's grand open house celebration, with it's new look, a new focus.

The main feature is the royal grove, 30-thousand square feet of trees and some native plants, designed with cultural elements. The idea is to promote the center as much more than a place to shop. Even the name changed from royal hawaiian shopping center to Royal Hawaiian Center.

http://www.royalhawaiiancenter.com/

It might not seem like it when you're in Waikiki. There are lots of people walking on the streets, hanging out on the beach. But state numbers show visitors arrivals are down. A 17.3% drop in visitors this past August compared to last. Arrivals from the west coast plunged 24.2%, the largest drop on record. Statewide, tourism revenue is down $206.9 million for the month of August.

http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/20081020/GETPUBLISHED/810200314/1266/NEIGHBORHOODS01

awai'i's visitor arrivals plunged last month — again — with a 17.3 percent drop from last August, not counting cruise passengers.
The double-digit plummet and continuing decline in the state's No. 1 industry could fuel more worries about the economy.

The worst news came from a traditionally strong source of visitors — the U.S. West — which posted its biggest decline on record, down 24.2 percent, according to the August report by the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism.

The end, the beginning

August 20th, 2010
By

I have mixed feelings about this.

This is my final blog post here — but I'll be blogging for a new Web site called Nonstop Honolulu, which was created by a group of ex-Advertiser staffers who put together the now defunct Hawai'i brand of Metromix. (Read more about the new site here.)

While I'm excited to start a new chapter in my blogging career — if you could call it that — I'm sad to leave the place where I've been posting for more than four years.

Sure, it's not quite the same site after the merger between the Honolulu Star-Bulletin and The Honolulu Advertiser. But it's basically the same place with the same people.

It's been a great four years, full of interesting people, places and, of course, food. I've had the pleasure of meeting so many different readers (and lurkers), both online and IRL. I hope you continue to read my ramblings at the new site. Not much will change — but I'll likely be posting more videos and food photo galleries.

So thanks to everyone who's stopped by, posted comments, sent me e-mails or just casually glanced at my fuud photos. This isn't the end, rather a new beginning — or a continuation of sorts. And I'm excited for what's to come.

I hope you continue with me on my adventures — in relationships, at work, with food. I may have to buy pants with elastic waistbands.

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Starting Monday, Aug. 23, Cat will move her blog to a new site. Look for her there at www.nonstophonolulu.com/thedailydish.

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Follow Cat on Twitter @thedailydish or send her an e-mail at cat@thecatdish.com.

$#*! your dad says

August 19th, 2010
By

The other night I saw a commercial for a new sitcom on CBS called "$#*! My Dad Says."

It's based on the popular Twitter of the same name — more than 1.5 million people follow it — where a 29-year-old posts the rants and ramblings of his 74-year-old dad.


Watch a preview of the new show

It made me think about the $#*! my dad has said to me over the years.

It's funny how much our parents influence us. I hear a lot of my dad — and my mom — in me when I'm talking, especially to my students. I think they're tired of hearing me say the same things my parents used to tell me growing up, like "You can't reason with unreasonable people" and "Nothing good happens after midnight."

Here are some of my favorites from "$#*! My Dad Says" (that could be printed here):

• "Don’t focus on the one guy who hates you. You don’t go to the park and set your picnic down next to the only pile of dog s**t."
• "No. Humans will die out. We're weak. Dinosaurs survived on rotten flesh. You got diarrhea last week from a Wendy's."
• "Stop trying so hard. He doesn't like you. Jesus, don't kiss an ass if it's in the process of s**tting on you."
• "I didn't say you were ugly. I said your girlfriend is better looking than you, and standing next to her, you look ugly."

Got any great $#*! your dad has said to you?

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Starting Monday, Aug. 23, Cat will move her blog to a new site. Look for her there at www.nonstophonolulu.com/thedailydish.

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Follow Cat on Twitter @thedailydish or send her an e-mail at cat@thecatdish.com.

ASK DR. DISH: Bad service

August 18th, 2010
By

Question: I took my husband's watch to a jeweler who promised he could change the battery of any waterproof watch and not damage it. When we went to pick it up, he said he tested the watch to some ridiculously depth that the watch actually was not made for. After a couple of days of use in the water, my husband discovered that water was leaking into the water and now it's broken. I would not be so upset about the watch since it's not that expensive. But it was my dad's watch and he passed away several years ago. It is very sentimental to me. I told the jeweler what happened and he said the watch must have been cracked before. But it wasn't. What can I do? I'm so pissed!

Answer: At the very least, you should get your money back for the work he did. He obviously didn't fix your watch if it's now broken. But it's really a case of his word against yours — and you don't have any proof that he damaged your watch. So you're probably out of luck on this one. But I would explain to the jeweler what happened and how sentimental this watch is and see what he says. He could be a jerk and say, "Too bad, so sad." In which case, write back and we'll expose him! (Kidding) But he might be empathetic. You can't replace the watch — but the watch wasn't going to last forever, either. Make peace with your dad's passing and remember him, not his watch. That's the best advice I can offer up.

Anyone had a similar experience? Or anyone got advice to dish?

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Starting Monday, Aug. 23, Cat will move her blog to a new site. Look for her there at www.nonstophonolulu.com/thedailydish.

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Follow Cat on Twitter @thedailydish or send her an e-mail at cat@thecatdish.com.

'Good grief'

August 17th, 2010
By

Yesterday I was at the dog park and witnessed something the dogs were doing that prompted me to say, "Good grief."

My friends all know that this isn't an uncommon phrase to come out of my mouth (especially at the dog park). But one of the dog owners there jerked her head back, smiled and said, "I haven't heard that since Charlie Brown!"

That started a conversation about words, phrases and other slang we don't use anymore, like "wicked," "scram," "phat" and "def."

I've discovered, through self-reflection and feedback from people who have to stand there and listen to me talk, that I tend to use outdated words. Some faves include "heavy," "nifty," "keen" and frolic."

I'm fascinated with words and how we use them. On the New York Times' site, there was a little story about the paper's use of the word "hipster," which was published more than 250 times in the past year.

Turns out it's an old word, dating back to the '40s and means the same thing as "hepcat": One who is exceptionally aware of or interested in the latest trends and tastes, especially a devotee of modern jazz.

(Even the term "daddy" to mean a young woman's boyfriend or lover — particularly a rich one — dates back to the '20s.)

So I came up with a list of old words and phrases we don't use much anymore:

• Heebie jeebies
• Applesauce or horsefeathers (means the same thing)
• Bee's knees or cat's meow (means the same thing)
• Bird (in reference to a woman)
• Jiggy
• Fresh or fly (cool)
• Hoochie
• Ice (diamonds)
• Dunzo (made popular by MTV's "Laguna Beach" but never caught on)
• Hammajang (messed up)
• Tantaran (to show off)
• Broke da mouth (taste good)

Got any more to share?

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Starting Monday, Aug. 23, Cat will move her blog to a new site. Look for her there at www.nonstophonolulu.com/thedailydish.

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Follow Cat on Twitter @thedailydish or send her an e-mail at cat@thecatdish.com.