Aloha ‘Oe

When I was a kid, my Dad would drag out the famous lines from Lewis Carroll’s poem The Walrus and the Carpenter anytime some matter of importance needed discussion.

“The time has come,” the Walrus said,
“To talk of many things:
Of shoes–and ships–and sealing-wax–
Of cabbages–and kings—”

Well, the time has come to speak of some things here on the silly dog blog, too. Not shoes or cabbages.

I am not one to sneak up on a topic or sugar coat news, so I’ll just blurt out that this is likely the final post in the series about Max’s adventures in Hawaii.

Our adventurer.

Our intrepid adventurer says aloha.

However, before I elaborate, let’s talk about Spike Jones.

Spike was born in 1911. He specialized in writing and performing novelty songs, often parodies of famous musical scores and popular tunes. He would take a tender ballad, a moving classical piece or a treasured song and add gunshots, cowbells, slide whistles and all manner of outlandish sound effects. He would also change lyrics with abandon.

Spike and his orchestra – The Musical Depreciation Revue – became quite famous touring post-World War 2 North America. Later, Spike formed a second orchestra which he named “My Other Orchestra.” Actually, over his short career – the booze and ciggies got him at 53 – Spike had lots of bands including “The City Slickers” and “The Band That Plays for Fun.”

But I digress even further than I intended.

I bring up Spike because he recorded a classic parody of the Hawaiian War Chant. After a tender opening verse of “Aloha ‘Oe”, Spike intones the timeless phrase:

“As the sun pulls away from the shore, and our boat sinks slowly in the west…”

OK, before we go much further you need to hear Spike’s version of the Hawaiian War Chant, a parody guaranteed to offend every resident of the 50th State. Give a listen…

By the way, if Spike is unfamiliar to you, do yourself a favor and Google his stuff. It’s old-timey, corny but ultimately very funny material and, trust me, you will waste many happy hours exploring all that he left behind.

In what may be the greatest sentence in all of Wikipedia is this explanation of the impact that Spike had on modern music:

There is a clear line of influence from the Hoosier Hot Shots, Freddie Fisher and his Schnickelfritzers and the Marx Brothers to Spike Jones — and to Stan Freberg, Gerard Hoffnung, Peter Schickele’s P.D.Q. Bach, The Goons, Mr. Bungle, Frank Zappa, The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band, The Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo, The Beatles and “Weird Al” Yankovic.

Is that great, or what? The Bonzo Dog Doo-Dah Band. Who knew?

Let’s get back to the point of this post.

The reason that I say this may be the finale of Max’s Hawaii explorations is that we are moving away from our beloved Hawaii a little later this month. By the time Thanksgiving raises its cholesterol-laden, turkey and stuffing head, we will be residing in…gasp!…California.

“Good heavens, man, are you daft?” they say. Well, maybe, but we prefer to look on our relocation as starting a new phase of our lives. The motivation for the move is simple, unimaginative and very common: as we evolve from elegant seniors into  Old Pharts with a Malt, we find that our family tree has become a pyramid.

Our family tree. It's all about the base.

Our family tree. It’s all about the base.

We sit at the top with no parents or elder relatives. Our siblings have passed and except for the odd cousin (and that adjective was judiciously chosen) there are no peer relationships.

All we have are the kids and grand kids and, as long as we stay in Hawaii, we will never see them with any frequency. Their interests, aspirations and careers have taken them away from the islands and, for them, Hawaii is now a holiday destination, not a place to make home.

Basically we are moving to be closer to, and more involved with, our kids and their kids’ lives. As many of you will appreciate, this face time stuff gets more important as mortality becomes a more immediate issue. So, the move is all for good, even if it comes with very mixed emotions.

I don’t know what to do with this silly dog blog. There over 150 stories here and most of them are about a gentle little white dog who explores his island home. It doesn’t feel quite right to take a turn and have him now explore California, but simply terminating the blog doesn’t seem right either. What to do…what to do?

If you, Dear Readers, have any thoughts on this subject let me know. The next few weeks will be busy ones but I’ll do my best to reply to comments.

Packing and prepping to move is at best a wee black bear of a task and at worst a ferocious Grizzly bear of a task. So we’ll just grin and bear it. Snorf, snorf.

We were fortunate with the sale of our condo: we listed it and had first showings on a Friday. A ton of people showed up. (No, really, they each weighed a ton. It looked like a plus-size sale at WalMart.) We were in escrow at 9:00 a.m. Monday morning.

The sheer number of details involved in a cross-Pacific move is intimidating. It can be stressful. I have found, for example, that all my possessions are really of inconsequential value and we should look to reduce the clutter. Meanwhile, the AJF’s stuff is sacred ground without which we will surely perish in the wilds of California.

My “junk” – her term – can be tossed into cardboard containers with vegetable pictures emblazoned on the side while her “possessions” – her word again – must be gently packed with organic, gluten-free floss plucked by virgin Nepalese monks from free-range hummingbirds’ armpits. Perhaps I overstate the case.

Despite the seemingly overwhelming list of “to-do’s” we know that soon we will be saying goodbye. We’ll be boarding United Airlines while the Poocharoni, after a visit to Miss Nanako at the Beauty Salon for Doggies, will be loaded on Aloha Air Cargo to meet us six hours later on the really big island of North America.

We are also making our final visits to our favorite spots and restaurants, spending time with dear friends of long standing and looking at our home land with a different set of eyes that want to take in, capture and preserve sights that we won’t see again, at least for awhile. I think the AJF’s eyes may have been a bit misty of late.

Paul Theroux said, “Hawaii is not a state of mind, but a state of grace.” Thus it shall always be for us. But it is time to once again swirl up our little Nutri-Bullet of a mixed nationality family and say “さよなら” (sayonara). See ya later. Farewell and godspeed. And in the immortal words of Spike Jones, “Wicki wacki woo.”

Or simply, aloha ‘oe.

Thanks for being with us on this silly dog blog and joining the Mighty Furball on his adventures in the 50th State. I count all you fellow dog-lovers as good friends and promise to be a faithful reader of your blogs in days to come.

Me ke aloha pumehana,
Tom, Machiko (the AJF) & Maxwell the Dog

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43 Responses to Aloha ‘Oe

  1. You close down this blog and I’ll have the poodle track you down in California to make you see the error of your ways….it has ways of making you write that the Gestapo could not imagine.

    And there are some of us who haven’t a clue about what California is like and would welcome a gentle little white dog as tour guide…I bet his views on moving would pack a punch for a start…not to speak of the photographs…Max has a range of expressions which are unequaled in their ability to express his views.
    And what are we to do for the occasional ‘snorf, snorf’ might I ask?

    And who else would awaken memories of Spike Jones?

    Best of luck with the move…we did it from France to Costa Rica so you have all my sympathy…and as to priorities, just tell the removal men that the boxes with pictures of veg on the side are the valuables, so packaged to deter sticky fingered customs officers….

    Liked by 2 people

    • I do fear the wrath of the poodle. It’s no comfort that the poodle breed probably originated in Germany rather than France as some would have one believe. Being beaten with a schnitzel can be every bit as painful as pounded with a baguette. Thanks for the good wishes on the move.

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      • It will be great for you both to have more time with your family…and if they didn’t have the taste to move to Hawaii then Mohamet just had to go to the mountain.
        I’ve always had the idea that there is something of Frederick the Great about that poodle…it triumphs over adversity and then rubs your nose in it…though thank goodness it doesn’t play the flute.
        Settle down, enjoy the new life..but do keep in touch.

        Like

  2. Kat says:

    Don’t worry, it’ll be a wonderful change for you & the AJF! Relocating later in life is intimidating but it’s invigorating too. I know, I did it 3 years ago (to be near the kids & grandkids). New environs and kids’ faces bring freshness to our existence. Please keep blogging cuz your writing is great. Maybe a new blog called Max Conquers Cali? Lol. Best of luck.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t think Max is much of a conqueror. With his mild disposition he’s likely a poster dog for the conquered. He considers abject surrender as a skill since it usually results in belly rubs.

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  3. Me and Nellie would be sad if you were to stop writing your blog. Just think of California as a different Hawaii and also needs to be explored.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m sure we will soon find out just how different our world will be. We’ve moved a lot over the years so we do not fear the unknown. It does add some spice to life. And I hear beer prices are quite affordable there.

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  4. loisajay says:

    No! No! No! I see a new blog: “Adventures of Moon-Doggie or The Malt Hangs Ten.” Take a break, but don’t stop the blog. I will miss you! As Helen says, I have no idea what’s out there on the other side of the USA so I need Max to tune me in on what’s happening on that coast. Think about this…

    Liked by 3 people

    • I looked at a map to see what’s on the other side and there was a note “Here there be dragons” which wasn’t encouraging at all. In fairness it was an old map. No matter the ultimate course, I’ll be taking at least a short break from blogoworld just to attend the myriad obligations inherent in the move. Well, that and getting my last beach time in. But fear not, I’ll be checking out your Pets and Prisoners blog regularly and inserting my usual rude and off-topic comments.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Kismet says:

    I don’t understand this fascination with being near grand-kids but then again my spring eggs haven’t hatched yet.

    As a former Kowlifornyn, to where are you heading? You’ll go crazy there unless you can vent on a blog. It’s a place that screams to have the insanity chronicled.

    What would Spike Jones do, give up?

    Liked by 2 people

    • The way we look at it, Kismet, the kids and g-kids may be the ones committing us to old age homes so we’d better be nice to them. We have the herd scattered from northern to southern Cali but we’ll start in the south with the mild-mannered daughter and see if she can tolerate our presence nearby. She’s out by the Claremont Colleges if you know the area. As for Spike, he’d never give up. He’d just add a slide whistle and a gunshot or two.

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  6. Verna, Dini and Kiku the (former) Hale Kaheka Yorkshire Terrorists sob their good-byes to big brother Max through whom they lived vicarious adventures. Please continue the blog in California because this is a new chapter for Max to share life on the really big island.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey you and the Yorkshire Terrorists abandoned us first! OK, it was only a few miles down the street but still…But we look forward to following the exploits of the three pretty ones through emails and updates from you, Daisy.

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  7. Don’t you dare stop sharing that gorgeous little guy with us! I think we will all want to hear about Max’s new adventure as he settles into his new home and find new lady dogs hearts to break!
    I wish you all the very best with the move and your new life. It is an exciting time for you all.
    Extra hugs to my little furry pal x

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Lesley says:

    Come back after a short break and tell us how things are hanging from 6 inches up in California.
    Please, can’t bear to think of not getting a fix of The Furface.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I look at the weather maps on morning TV and according to them, Hawaii is located just south of Texas next to Alaska in the Gulf of Mexico. So why does the airplane flight take so long? Huh? Huh? The Furface is resilient and we predict a successful relocation where he can seduce even more people into providing food treats.

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  9. tynecastle says:

    Spike Jones is great! His music deserves a revival!

    The move sounds a good idea to me, seems sensible and the best way forward, but it is California!
    The poor dog will spend his time looking down on the crazed diet fads of the dogs around him, the dog exercises ion the beach and the constant fear of earthquakes.
    It will be fine otherwise I guess…

    Keep the blog going, it will develop in the big land.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ah yes, the Hollywood Dog Syndrome. Max hanging out at Muscle Beach, getting all up in our faces about free range, gluten-free dog treats with a kale shot. He might just take to celebrity given how spoiled he already is. Get the limo, fuel the G-6 and bring on the premium vodka and those hot little shih tzus. Oh lordy, lordy, now I’m getting concerned.

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  10. kerbey says:

    I thought that was a very surprised Red Skelton by the cover artwork, but I did listen to it, while I read the rest of the post, and that made your sad words somehow seem less potent. Of course, grandkids are the priority. You’ve been blessed to live in paradise, that most of us wish to visit, and many never do. I couldn’t afford to even travel there, much less live there–or California. So that begs the question. Will you be able to support your quality of life in California? Maybe even upgrade?

    In any event, you have to keep your blog–or A blog. I always like your comments when you visit mine, and I like to know what Max is up to, even if he’s not within the K streets.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The funny thing, Kerbey, is that photo of Spike look the spitting image of the current mayor of Honolulu. No kidding, brothers from a different mother. Cali is expensive, true, but it is a bargain in most respects compared to Hawaii the exceptions being property and sales taxes. We’re renting for a few months while we get the lay of the land and determine if our kids really do like us or if they were just joking all this time. If things work out we hope to buy a small home with a little yard for His Highness. Of course I will persist in coming over to your funny blog and dropping off kilter remarks.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. roweeee says:

    No!!!! Don’t leave me this way! Lady is howling to the moon, except it is now daylight and the sun is concealed behind an overcast sky. I always said the mutt wasn’t very bright. Please keep blogging. We would miss you both very much Max with his cute poochy face and you with your great sense of humour. You don’t always really how you impact on people you’ve never met but I hope you appreciate that your followers have taken you both into our hearts. Besides, you might need a few mates when you up sticks and move. It might not be an easy transition. Have you asked Max how he feels about losing his celebrity status? While he might not have been keen on the pinata look, I’m sure he enjoyed his adventures as well as the online dating. Take care and best wishes,
    Ro, Bilbo and Lady.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks for the kind words, Ro. At leastour new home doesn’t have the Joys of Straya: the rabid wombats, deadly drop bears, feral ‘roos and spiders the size of chihuahuas. I’ll be a regular on your site to keep up with the adventures of your lovely family and the doggies and enjoy your tales as the kidlets grow.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Kim Archer says:

    There are new things and people to sniff in California, so hope Max will keep us informed through his (and your!) Blog! I really enjoy the adventures, keep them coming if Max is up to the challenge of a new location!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think Max looks forward to the sniffing part of the relocation. He loves all human beings; other dogs not so much. He thinks there is nothing better than running up to complete strangers (including street punks, drunks, homeless and axe murderers) to make new friends. He should have a field day in California.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Wow!! How exciting. And scary. And wonderful! Congratulations this new chapter of your life!

    Please don’t stop sharing your stories! I truly enjoy reading about your adventures and learning about different cultures, cities, and places. (Your post about the insanely expensive toilet seat is stuck in my mind. I was telling s friend about it just two weeks ago!)

    Jacques and I wish you a bon voyage and hope that California (and being with your family) is a wonderful experience for you. We look forward to reading about your new adventures! (hint, hint)😉

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Oh-no!!!!! As you know the reason for my online darkness of late, this comes as a sad punctuation mark to life in general of late. Color me even sadder. I hope you will reconsider Max’s travels and travails as no doubt he will see California in a light that the rest of us will appreciate and savor. The very best to you and yours and safe journey to the new family HQ. Please keep in touch; Sam and I will do the same and hope to get back to sharing tails and tales soon. Hugs and ear scratches.❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Monika, you and Sammy always have a special place in our hearts and we hope everything turns out well for you. Of course we are going to stay in touch, we need to know all about the Pood’s next exciting episodes. Take your time…we’ll be here when you are back in the blogosphere! Insert heart emoji which I don’t know how to do.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Joanne Corey says:

    Best wishes on your move! I do hope that you decide to continue the blog once you get settled in CA. I’m sure there will be plenty more adventures to be had! I would suggest leaving your word press address the same to keep your readers together, but you can change the blog title a bit to reflect the move, perhaps with an update on your new street(s) so it is still recognizable. You can also make a menu change so that Max’s HI stories stay together with a new tab for Max’s CA stories. (For the record, I don’t think shutting down the blog is a good option, at all!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • You must be reading my mind, Joanne (if so I apologize for what you are reading) because I’ve been thinking that segmenting the blog, renaming it and starting a California section may be fun and will preserve Max’s adventures. Given my minuscule skills with WordPress it would be a challenging undertaking for me although any red headed 13 year old could make the changes in a heartbeat.

      As it turns out there is still at least one more Hawaii story coming up. This Sunday there is a dog gathering planned at the condo where the neighborhood pooches will say aloha to Max. I plan to take some photos and report on the affair. I’ll probably document Max’s final departure preparations too. Once this blogging stuff infects you it’s hard to get out of your blood, eh?

      Thanks for the good ideas and wisdom…

      Like

  16. roweeee says:

    Hi Max,
    I don’t know if you’re still checking mail but we know how you and Tom like dog stories and we could really use some help at the moment. Mum has written us these crazy new year’s resolutions and because we couldn’t read her letters, she’s now decided to teach us how to read. Boring! You can’t eat it and you can’t chase it!! Anyway, here’s a linkn to the overview. https://beyondtheflow.wordpress.com/2016/01/06/mummy-dogs-cant-read-but/
    Hope you guys keep blogging. We’ve missed you. I tried sending an email but I don’t think it worked. My email address is rowenanewton at outlook.com
    Best wishes,
    Bilbo and Lady but please don’t let Mum know we’ve been in touch. We like to keep it quiet that we can read and write AND are quite tech savvy!

    Like

  17. Clowie says:

    I hope the move has gone smoothly. I hope you reconsider and tell us about your advenures in California!

    Like

    • Hi Kerbey! Hope all the Texas rains didn’t wash you away. There’s a pretty good chance Mr. Malt will make an appearance soon – he’s doing fine, feeling sassy and settled into his new home.

      Liked by 1 person

      • kerbey says:

        Oh, good! We didn’t get washed away, but it’s made me mow the yard a lot more–and the mold pollen in the air is debilitating. Glad Max is settled.

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