IMR: 1998: June: 10 -- Wednesday, 1:59 p.m.
UH Press, Manoa, Hawai`i
On Sunday, Jen and I packed up Katie and a grocery bag full of snacks and towels and headed out to Waimanalo Beach.

It was supposed to have been a much-anticipated picnic of old-school Ka Leo survivors, an event previously scheduled for the week before but postponed (in part) because we couldn't make it.

William was the only one who showed up.

We had a wonderful afternoon anyway, sitting in the shade (Katie's too young for sunscreen), watching the waves and smelling the sea mist. The man-o-war warning signs were up, but since I spotted nary a one during a full-length search of the shore, William tore up the waves and Jen and I got in a few good wades.

Eventually, William headed off to do some homework and we headed up to Mililani. Mom, ever the saint, watched Katie for the evening so Jen and I could enjoy a movie.

Finding "Quest for Camelot" playing nowhere nearby, Jen agreed to see "The Truman Show." We took off in a huff 20 minutes before showtime, afraid it might be sold out, but still found the theater mostly empty.

We enjoyed it immensely, in spite of the hype. I couldn't help but wonder, however, if the film would have been even more thought-provoking if more time had been spent on the decision that came up at the very end... and if Truman had ultimately made the opposite choice.

I later caught up with Martha, who was -- perplexingly -- also miffed that no one had showed up at the beach. Both of us insist we were the only ones there. We still haven't figured out how we missed eachother. I might blend into the crowd, but Martha isn't all that hard to spot.

NPR's "All Things Considered" did a segment on the Taco Bell dog yesterday.

That pup already annoys me to no end, but apparently, we heathens in Hawai`i have been spared the worst of the "Yo Quero" blitz. Altogether, they played clips from at least half a dozen ads, but I only recognized a couple.

Then again, I don't watch all that much telivision.

Still, the report highlighted a few other reasons to dislike the dog. Like how chihuahua's are now going at a premium at pet stores, leaving many animal activists fearing a repeat of the fad-fed adopt-and-dump phenomenon that led thousands of dalmations to early ends following Disney's movie last year. Or that it can be taken as a thoroughly tasteless, stereotypical characterization of the Hispanic community.

I mean, they talked to a guy who was trying to organize a boycott of the Bell.

Most entertaining were the parodies, including the Jack in the Box "it's not like dogs are picky" jab. Another parody had the dog saying, "To be honest, the stuff tastes like dog food."

"Yo quero civil rights! Yo quero civil rights!"

I appreciate clever advertising as much as the next guy, but to me, nothing beats a good spoof. Seen Sprite's "Yablo" ad? Or better yet, the Twix takeoff on Wrigley's Doublemint? That's funny stuff.

Hey. I just realized. I'm scanning the cover of a book by the judge who presided at our wedding.

Coming soon from University of Hawai`i Press, "Fables from the Garden," by Leslie Ann Hayashi and illustrated by Kathleen Wong Bishop. A collection of children's stories set in a Hawaiian garden.

Small world.

Thanks to my big mouth, I'm now responsible for running a seventh mailing list through UH.

It happened at UH Press the same way it did at AIB. My boss wondered aloud how to improve communication between x, y, and z. I said, "How about a mailing list?" They said, "Sounds great. You handle it."

Fortunately, this one is mildly interesting. Mildly.

CSPEC-L is our answer to frantic posts in obscure newsgroups, endless searches through cryptic tech support libraries and (in one recent case) desperate phone calls to random names in the campus phone book.

All the computer specialists in the UH system -- from Novell-certified gurus at Manoa to entry-level webmasters on Kaua`i -- can now put their heads together to solve problems (and, apparently, bitch about the university's convoluted bid-list system).

It'll save everyone some time, especially in preventing the duplication of troubleshooting efforts. Why go crazy over trying to get MacOS 8.1 to work with RTM servers if someone else already figured it out?

And maybe I'll learn a thing or two. Not that I plan to work in computer science or anything.

So in case anyone's lost track (I nearly did), here are the monsters I'm currently charged with wrangling.

And those do not include the five mailing lists (or is it six?) that I'm merely subscribed to. Frankly, my daily mailstat report looks like a NASA coredump.

Procmail: if you install it, they will come.

The only other thing that's been eating up my time lately is a "little side project" that's turning out to be a pretty big deal: "The Diary Registry." Setting up the database was no easy task, but at least I had a little fun doing the dinky graphics.


© Ryan Kawailani Ozawa · E-Mail: · Created: 10 June 1998 · Last Modified: 12 June 1998