04 November 2005

Foto Friday & Pro-Waikiki God Speech

Back on September 25, a serial letter writer named John L. Werrill wrote in to the Honolu Red Star Pravdatiser, complaining about the "concrete jungle of Waikiki." Your friendly local Hawaiian god liked neither the tone nor the style of the Pravdatiser sour amateur scribe. So I put on my slippahs and board shorts and walked around to take another look at the place. Then I wrote this:

Concrete Jungles of the Mind

Bottom line first: This letter writer has been in and around Waikiki since at least 1997 and is still complaining about it. Why he no leave?

Serial letter-to-the-editor writer John L. Werrill is certainly entitled to get as much published as he can in the Honolulu Red Star Pravdatiser. We're all for that 'cause it sure beats blogging for a living. Here's what he wrote back on 25 September about Waikiki. I'm gonna fisk it:

"On a recent visit to the concrete jungle of Waikiki, I have serious cause to wonder which department of authority never says 'no' to anything, but 'yes' to everything. Whether it's increased water demand, sewage, traffic, electricity, or gas and air circulation, the density is beyond comprehension now, let alone what is in the course of construction on Lewers Street and beyond."

That's concrete, palm tree, golf course, beaches, wide sidewalks, zoo, aquarium, park-laden jungle to you, fella. And if it's "beyond comprehension," how are you able to comprehend it enough later in your letter to make comparisons with other cities? (see below)

"Who is in charge? Who grants the permits? Who studies the effect? Who would want to live there? The mayor? Anyone on the City Council? Anyone on the Planning Commission? A developer? I don't think so. It's asphyxiating, overwhelming, a saturated mass of inconceivable lengths that defies common sense and logic, if not limits, again and again."

TikiPundit is in charge, grants permits and studies the effect of the moon on water. As for who wanna live Waikiki, about half the people who ever see it, including islanders. Too much to do Waikiki. What mean "saturated mass of inconceivable lengths?" Gotta consult on that phrase. By the way, TikiPundit also set limits--remember that next time you come visit jungle. Like, set limit on bagging whiners.

"Major cities on this planet -- Paris, London, Rome, Buenos Aires, Manchester, Monaco..."

Stop right there. Manchester? Excuse me while I go shut off the Kook-Meter. Noise drive friendly god crazy. Manchester is a festering blighted town torturing north England with its polluted presence and over-marketed soccer team, a city chock-a-block with Dickensian public housing for the stunted locals to grow up and die in.

You can see some pictures of Manchester here, but remember these are ones they're trying to sell, so they're the best-looking scenes of that stink-town available.

And, London's Victorian-era sewer system is decaying beneath its streets, to the extent that local councils advised their subjects to not put trash out until they saw a garbage truck coming up the street -- the millions of rats that come out of cracks in the sewers are a health hazard to the public. TikiPundit know: he live England one time. Flew like bird back home, first chance.

Rome and Monaco are neither more park-laden nor less crowded than Waikiki. Rome's notorious pollution and noise got so bad that the city had to limit driving on days the last number of your car's license plate didn't match the correct even or odd number. Pollution in Rome is so bad that the reason the city lives today -- tourism -- is at risk because all the old buildings are decaying on the spot from it.

If you haven't been to Monaco, imagine putting Waikiki x 2 up on top at Konahuanui. Right on top, skyscrapers and all running up and down the mountainside. Monaco cut the natural shoreline and built right up to it in geometrically-accurate lines and angles. Dah Royal Family dat place did a great job of paving over any vestige of greenery, to the extent that they hadda build a Cactus Garden on a cliffside and you gotta go up and down stairs to see all of it.

TikiPundit been bot' places, he know wat talk about.

Fortunately, your friendly local Hawaiian god has visited many of the established major cities on this planet: London, Paris, Rome, Tokyo, San Francisco, New York, Chicago, Sydney, Lisbon, Milan, Munich and of course Peterborough, England. Plus a whole lot more back when I was in the Age of the Night-Canoes. So now I know cities mo bettah. I know about crime, decay and pollution in England, know about blighted, overbuilt tax-dodge Monaco, know about tattered, overrated London, know about toxic, polluted Rome.

Only ting dis guy got right is Paris. 'Cept for right now. Leetle problem with Muslim slums.

"[Major cities]...are proportionately less dense, yet within a block or two there's a park to sit in, loaded with trees and benches. Waikiki, a supposed resort, is nothing more than a pile-driver heap of mismanagement at its worst. I was glad to get out."

I'm glad you got out, too! Lass t'ing anyone need, some gadfly roaming around the parks, scaring kids wit his angry looks.

One thing our John's not gonna get out of is the letter-writing biz. Here's his other penmanships.

In May 2004, in the paper, he advised us all to "try to keep your underwear clean, in case you have cardiac arrest." This was a clever and astute reference to the Abu Ghraib prison photo scandal.


chirp chirp

Riiiiiiight. I tink what he meant to say was, if you win a prize vacation to Manchester, don't take pictures.

Back in September 2003 John was complaining about June Jones' football salary, writing, "What do I care for a UH football season that always seems to be over before it's begun?" Well, he cared enough to write a letter -- tossing in references to English football salaries that tip his sentiments, if not nationality. The letter also tipped TikiPundit to Google for other letters.

In October 2000, John took up pen and outrage, writing that he's "not sure anybody walks in this town, but I do, daily, not just for exercise but to get a bird’s-eye view of how things progress or deteriorate in so-called Paradise." John's observations this month, possibly underpinned by his seemingly extensive experience with avoiding living in England (think Rome, Monaco, Buenos Aires) focused on Kapiolani Boulevard. He called it on a par with Bombay or Haiti, and was under "the impression I was in a Third World pigsty of sleazy clubs, littered vacant lots and sloppy, ill-kept sidewalks strewn with everything imaginable: used diapers at the bus stops, underwear, fast-food remnants, hub caps, not to mention 10 million cigarette butts buried in 12-inch-high weeds." Reminds me of every part of London save Kensington and Whitehall, except there you can also see syringes, homeless people, McDonald's wrappers, empty beer cans, junked cars, council estates with plywood for glass in the windows, soot, gang tags and hawkers selling stolen goods in the open from their car trunks.

Your friendly local Hawaiian god got a new contact for anybody don' like Waikiki. Name John. Anyone like dat outta hook up with Haole in Honolulu. You know, birds of a feather complain together.

'Cept, Haole done leff. She gone, prolly Colorado, based on her threats. Maybe John outta take clue from departed canoe. Why hang around, juss feeding your misery all day? Why hang around, juss penning letter after letter? What kine man juss pen letter all day, take no action?

One more lettah.

Way back in May 1997 John was skirting the issue of the Concrete Jungle for the moment, writing instead to the Red Star Bulletin, "Vijay Singh preferred Bombay curry and everybody's still perspiring," in support of one's right to jest.


chirp chirp

Enuff a dat clown.


Blogger RON said...

See, guys like that don't realize or don't want to admit that they are part of the density problem. A lot of mainlanders just got to move to Waikiki. Not Makiki or Kaulapapa for that matter. That's the same template, if that's the right word, that that person used for his old itinerary, repeated by today's cast of characters. A big reason that I, myself, remain in Waikiki, is that it's a nice neighborhood to walk around in....so Waikiki can't be that bad in that department. I'll take a wild guess that it was you who Waikiki Weekly was refering to in her finale post replying to someone's comment. Have you checked it out yourself whom got it her old URL....I can't tell whether you did that on purpose. Excellent "satire" BTW.

Blogger TikiPundit said...

Ron, whoah! Haole's web site now... not safe for work!
No, not my style -- not me that did that! I bet the got off the "Waikiki Beach and Hotels Bus" with a pre-determined attitude. Since I lived in England, I'm sensitized to sour, middle-aged Brits bitching about everything. And sensitized to them not doing anything about it. So it ticks me off more than some other stuff. Believe me, Letters to the Editor in England are a riot to read. This guy has been gone so long he's lost his touch.

Thanks for checking in.


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