IMR: People: Nate

[ Nate ]  
Osborne, Nathaniel Earl
Aliases: Captain Gonzo, Lusus
Web: None

Nate is, in part due to the sheer length of tenure, my very best friend.

I've known him since 1986, when we were both awkward geeks at Washington Intermediate School. (Sure, we're still awkward geeks, but we get paid for it now.)

I met him in Mr. Oshiro's math class. We sat in the same row, him in front, me in back. I had a daily ritual of going to the front of the glass to sharpen my pencils, and one day, Nate decided he'd try and trip me.

He failed. But that didn't stop him from trying. The trip-dodge quickly became a ritual, although we still had barely said a word to eachother.

Finally, at the end of the year, there was a school-sponsored, circle-island bus trip. We boarded the same bus, and -- simply because neither of us wanted to sit next to a distinctly unpopular girl -- sat together.

Thus began our friendship.

We spent every recess and lunch break together, walking circles around the cafeteria and deconstructing the universe. He introduced me to the underground secrets of the UH-Manoa campus, where his father worked, and we spent many an afternoon doing things we shouldn't have been doing.

We also skulked around Waikiki, nosing around the basements and rooftops of assorted hotels. We were very rarely caught.

Although we went to different high schools -- him Roosevelt, me Mililani -- we kept in touch.

We became mountain biking enthusiasts. At one point, we would regularly ride from my house in Mililani all the way to Hawai`i Kai and back. Quite a trip, including a remote military road through Kipapa gulch and several perilous crossings.

Our crowning achievement was completing the 100-mile Century Ride, which started and ended at Kapi`olani Park.

We were literally the last to cross the finish line, but then again, we made the trip on heavy mountain bikes stacked with supplies instead of on the ultra-light, thousand-dollar racing machines the other pros were riding. There were quite a few wide eyes at the 100-mile turnaround point.

Once, Nate bought a rusted out '77 Camaro. Although he valiantly tried to reconstruct it out of Bondo, it finally gave up the ghost after miraculously surviving a drive up to Mililani. Since then, Nate pretty much stuck to pedal-powered transportation.

Through and after high school Nate held assorted jobs, including working as The Bike Shop in `Aiea. He also went on a solo soul-searching, hitchhiking trip up the West Coast. Eventually, he was doing phone tech support for Hawai`i OnLine.

While I was otherwise occupied at UH, we still hung out now and then. Most notably, he introduced Jen and I to the joys of camping, including our all-time favorite overnighter at Malaekahana.

Jen and I, meanwhile, introduced Nate to Jaimee, a friend from Hilo. He was smitten the moment he first saw her one night at "The Groove."

In 1996, he had to move to Portland, Ore., when HOL was bought by GST. A year later, Jaimee followed him there. The two of them (and their two cats) now attend Portland Community College at Sylvania. Nate, having left GST, now works on campus as a computer tech and writing tutor.

In November 2001, Nate and Jaimee finally got engaged.


Don't ask Nate about Amelia Airhart. Or play the theme from A Summer's Place.


Born 4 March 1974. Graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1992. Moved to Oregon in 1996. Presently attending and working at Portland Community College.

© Ryan Kawailani Ozawa · E-Mail: · Created: 10 January 1998 · Last Modified: 21 December 2001