Super Bowl Sunday Afterglow
Monday, February 4, 2002
Suburbia, California 


Call it a clan, call it a network,
call it a tribe, call it a family.
Whatever you call it, 
whoever you are, 
you need one.
~ Jane Howard

The Super Bowl is a great excuse for a potluck pa`ina (Hawaiian party), and six couples from our Hawaiian club 'ohana (family) gathered together to watch the game over at BJ's and Joseph's home.

Joseph & BJ

BJ and Joseph outdid themselves, serving us bowlfuls of cioppino -- one of my all-time favorites, accompanied by a fresh, green salad and slices of French bread.  Joseph, we learned, once aspired to be a professional chef.  After serving in the Air Force, he stopped in Chicago with the intention of enrolling in chef school.  But, he found Chicago way too cold, and he said, "Pass!" 

And then, via a mutual friend in California, he met this cute girl from Lana`i, BJ, who had been to college in the Pacific Northwest.  They clicked, and the rest is history.

Teeming with chunks of seafood, Joseph's steaming hot cioppino was simply delicious and a testament to Joseph's natural chef talents.  Tom and newly-retired teacher Paddy joined us on the lanai, and together, we thoroughly enjoyed every spoonful.

The potluck dishes were also wonderful and plentiful: roast pork, ogo (Hawaiian seaweed), kau yuk, salmon, macaroni-potato salad, sushi, won ton, shrimp and lots of desserts, including an apple cake, Chinese almond float, and custard pie.  

BJ was the ever gracious hostess, and I had a chance to sit down and enjoy her company.  She is all Hawaiian heart.  We met her independent, energetic  82 year old mother, originally from Hilo; son Joey; her witty brother, who cracked us up, and his wife, Sherry; as well as grandson, Kepa, who will be auditioning for entrance into the regional Performing Arts School.  We've known Kepa since he was 8, and we join the rest in rooting for him. At 13, he is a sweet and adorable young man with an engaging personality. He doesn't know it, but he already has all of us "aunties and uncles" in his fan club.

After the game, I was "talking story" with Thomas, who is our club's chief wa`a (Hawaiian outrigger canoe) steward.  He reminisced about his hanabata (kid) days, growing up on the island of O`ahu.  He said he never went hungry.  At the beach, he'd scamper up the coconut trees for a snack of fresh coconut.  When he and his buddies went hiking in the mountains in the Tantalus area, they'd feast on bananas, mountain apples, and guavas.  Once, he came home with armfuls of sweet-smelling gardenias.  (Too bad, he didn't know his lovely Ellie back then) 

Ahh, those were the days.

Janice and George and Scott and Denny came later, as they'd been to a hâlau (hula school) fundraiser with Big Island entertainer-kumu hula-keeper of the culture Kekuhi Kanahele performing.  

We'll be looking for Scott and Denny in the opening ceremonies of the Winter OIympics, coming up soon.  They will be the sweetheart couple in that vast sea of humanity.  Lucky buggahs.

Oh yes, the New England Patriots beat the St. Louis Rams in New Orleans in one of the best games ever.  I learned that Joseph and Thomas are still die-hard Rams fans, even if Rams owner, Georgia Frontieri, ditched faithful LA-Orange County fans by pulling up stakes and moving the Rams to St. Louis. 

In typical Hawaiian fashion, BJ and Joseph gifted their guests with makana hele (parting gifts).  A box of Chinese candy.  That's right, it's Chinese New Year coming up on February 12, 2002. It is the Chinese Year 4699, the Year of the Horse.

Mahalo nui, BJ & Joseph, for your Hawaiian hospitality!


"Life is a Gift."

Me ke Aloha pumehana, 
Author Unknown

P.S.  If you would like to share a portion of yourself with words, in response to this journal entry, you may do it here.  

 "The only gift is a portion of thyself..."
Ralph Waldo Emerson


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This web journal was created on a September Morn, 
September 29, 2001
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