Aloha is Me!

Since there is such a lack in the gene pool of Hawaiians in Hollywood, I thought that I would start with myself, as far as, an interview is concerned.

So last night while my keiki (children in Hawaiian) slept, I came up with a list of questions that I would potentially ask anyone.

As the day becomes brighter, so do I and I sit down, look over the content of my page and ask the first question.

Q.  Why and when did you come to Los Angeles?

Me:  The when is easy,  I left Hawaii in January of 1988.  The why, however, isn’t.  I left Hawaii to follow a little girl crush.  I say little girl because that is how I behaved, childish.  It was impulsive and not well planned.  I had no job, no place to live in case the gig I had didn’t work out and most of all I was afraid.

Q.  Why were you afraid?

Me:  Because I thought I was going to be destitute.  My parents were so far away, I really didn’t have a back up plan and I had no friends to speak of.  Just the person I was living with.

Q.  You’ve been here for almost 25 years, obviously you like it here.  Why didn’t you go back?

Me:  That is the million dollar question isn’t it.  I thought that if I went back to Hawaii, I would be a failure, that wouldn’t have measured up to expectations.  This was all an illusion in my head, however.

Q.  Will you ever move back?

Me:  It’s a dream.  But I’m not sure if it’s reasonable.  Who knows?

Q.  Why is Aloha, you?

Me:  You know, maybe that’s not the correct word.  Maybe the real word here is pono, meaning righteous.  Ho’oponopono, meaning to make right, would be a better word.  Making right, isn’t that what we all want?  When things are pono or right in our lives, all is right with the world.  Maybe that is what Aloha really is, to love and live rightly.

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I am Hawaiian

In has been brought to my attention as of late that I am, of all things, Hawaiian.

Yep.  I am.  If you’ve been reading my blog, you may know that I am.  However, there is a side to me that I often take for granted.  I am an American.

Now, you may think, ‘Yeah, so what?’  Well, here so what…I am of 4000 remaining pure Hawaiians left in the world.  After me, and those who are of the same blood culture die, we will no longer be a pure race.  Sad isn’t it?

I am an endangered species.

One day, my race will no longer exist and will become a part of history.  As a remaining few, I feel I should carry something forward to my children.  However, it is difficult.  I wasn’t raised to be a good Hawaiian, I was raised to be a proud American.  A very difficult dichotomy.

When there is a constant conflict it’s hard to stand in one corner and remain sane.  On one hand I can claim my Hawaiian heritage, proud, strong, and noble.  The other American with all the same strengths.  But when you’re trying to identify with something or someone, that may not always be the case.

The only one thing that I can hold true to at this very moment is this:

“Aloha, I am Hawaiian,”

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Hula, huh?

Hula

Have you ever said the word “Hula?”  Go ahead, say it.  The word itself is relaxing and great!  But it’s more than great, it’s refreshing.  In a world filled with party, hip-hop and pop music, hula and Hawaiian music still gives you a vision.

When someone mentions the word, the first thing anyone envisions is a vacation, next beaches and warm breezes, lastly lounging around and feeling the sand between your toes. No other music or dance can invoke that sort of vision.

When, “My Little Grass Shack,” plays in the background of some cheesy bar in Santa Monica, you don’t think “cheesy song” you think…VACATION! SAND! And RELAXATION!  And never-the-less you still think lovely girls in grass skirts dancing on the beach.

That really isn’t the essence of Hula but you can understand the concept.  Even as a child I knew that being able to dance Hula well, was a wonderfully beautiful thing.  The best of the best usually compete for titles and more  but that was never my thing.,

Dancing or performing Hula is a lifetime achievement, it is like any professional dance, with time and practice it can look like Swan Lake and if you are me, it’s better.  These days Halau’s (sch00l) are springing up faster than the economy.  In Japan alone they have over one hundred thousand haumana (students) learning Hula.  Who knew?  Even the Japanese have figured out the benefits of Hula.

The hula is not only about how well you can move your hand, hips, and feet, but it’s about knowing the song that you are dancing, feeling the song as you move through it.  Unlike ballet, when Hula is performed in a literal way, each movement is specific to the words in a song.

When the gestures are put together, not only does the dancer invoke the feeling of a song, but the meaning.  And if you pay attention you can almost see the story of the song unfold before your very eyes.  It is truly amazing.

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Barefoot Hawaiian

Why do I like going barefoot?  Because, it’s better than wearing shoes.

Hawaiians are famous for taking off their shoes before entering a house.   It’s a Pacific Islander/Asian tradition, where it is considered rude to bring the outdoors in.

Think about it.  If most people everywhere took off their shoes before they entered their homes, not only would you eliminate the dirt that tracks in a home but it possibly makes everyone feel better.

Take off your shoes, your feet feel better, no longer in the confines of leather, vinyl, or whatever material your shoes might be made of.  They’re breathing for the first time since 8am in the morning, wiggling your toes never felt so wonderful and you begin to relax.  How wonderful would that be?  Seriously!

We need more relaxed people in this world, friendlier even.  And all it would take is the simple act of taking off your shoes when you get home.

Am I over generalizing? Sure.  But hey, in a world where everyone is so uptight, I think…why not?  We could all use barefoot moments in our lives, each day letting out that deep breath and smiling even if it is for 5 minutes.

So, when stress begins to creep into your life or you need a change of pace, remove da shoes!  And relax Hawaiian style.

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Writing for Righting Sake

I am writing this article on behalf of my weighed down brain.  It just so happens that my gray matter is well, gray.  It hasn’t seen color for a few weeks now and I am beginning to think it may become permanent.  And if you knew anything at all about me, gray is not really my color.  I am more of a self-proclaimed Magenta or Fuchsia, perhaps even a lovely shade of violet, but never gray.

In order to fight this looming change of weather (in my brain); I decided to take action,”A Write for Righting Sake.”  All this means (to me) is that I am not wallowing in self-inflicted pity and sarcasm.  Usually the dialogue is much worse on the interior.

Whenever I feel like this writing usually makes everything “as right as rain.”(The Matrix).

Here’s a few thoughts I’d like to share.

1.  Being Hawaiian can be the most fascinating conversation that lasts for 5 minutes.

2.  You finally realize, when you get married and have children, they will have absolutely no clue what you’re talking about, ever.  Because the word Hawaii is synonymous with the word beach.

3.  My husband thinks long hair and hula are one of my best attributes physically.

4.  All of your closest friends are Hawaiian too and they become extended family.

5.  Every Hawaiian Festival is the same and you will bump into someone you knew from Hawaii.

6.  Hawaiian is when you’re born in Hawaii.  Native Hawaiian is when you’re born indigenous and can trace your family to original Hawaiians.  Filipino, Japanese, Chinese, German, (or anything in combination unless it’s mixed w/Hawaiian blood) do not equate Native Hawaiian.

7.  Yes, both my parents are Native Hawaiian too.  So were my grandparents, great grandparents, etc.  You get the picture (Yes, grass huts and hula skirts).

8.  Yes, I love Spam but don’t eat it half as much as I want to (really bad for you).

9. Yes, we are all normally really friendly.  But being friendly and nice, doesn’t make us stupid.

10. And last but not least I am a Kau Inoa card toting Native Hawaiian!

So there you have it, I am Hawaiian and I love it!  And now that I’ve let that all come out to a page on the internet, I can go back to my daily life.

Aloha no Kakou!  A Hui Hou!

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When you get lost, USE A MAP!

I may have gotten ahead of myself.  I think before I find anyone or anything remotely like a Hawaiian in Hollywood, I may need a map.  A turn by turn,  moment to moment, GPS, without the annoying voice, of course.

Being a lost Hawaiian in Hollywood can be a very lonely thing, so lonely in fact I had to start a blog to talk about it.  I have Hawaiian friends, no one of notoriety but Hawaiian none-the-less.  So like any good scout, boy or girl, you start from the beginning;always the beginning and then you connect the dots to get to end.

 

What is the beginning? Well, like any good Hawaiian would know, it’s Hawaii.  Hawaii is the connective tissue, the binding between all of us who move out and off the ‘Aina(island in Hawaiian).

So, each time I come here it’ll be a little history, a little bit autobiography, and hopefully, a lot of humor.

Google map here I come!

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Okay there’s a really small gene pool!

First things first.

(Keanu Reeves)

I think I got ahead of myself.  I thought that being a lost Hawaiian trying to find other Hawaiians would be a small task, not so small.  I am not an agent, non-Hollywood, not-even-in-the-business type person.  So getting an interview with any type of celebrity is going to be near or probably close to impossible.  Oh! And did I mention there are about a handful of Hawaiian blooded anyone in Hollywood.  The gene pool is thin.

(Michelle Scherzinger)

I am not doing a celebrity piece, that’s not really what I want to accomplish here.  I want to know what it feels like(to others)to be disconnected from Hawaii, being away and the affect and effect of being a distant islander.

(Jason Mamoa – Baywatch)

Being Hawaiian is a very special and very rare thing.  I should know, I’ve been Hawaiian all my life!  In order to get the ball rolling here, I will be conducting my own interview.  Hopefully, it will give some perspective of what I am trying to say and accomplish.

Here’s keeping my fingers crossed!

A hui hou!

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