25 A Week In Sydney
26 Interview with the Widow - 1
27 Interview with the Widow - 2
28 Three Kings of Orient
29 1969 - Year of the Rooster
30 Summer in Europe
31 Bellybuttons & Maggots
32 Yes/No vs. Maybe
33 Blood, Beer and Warm Feet
34 Mine Universe
35 Hands off, Boots on
36 The Accidental Cure
37 It's the Only Thing
38 The Professor's Stable
39 Little House on the Highway
40 "9/11 is OK"
41 Suspected Child Abuse
42 Midlife Crisis
43 Where Am I Today - 1
44 Where Am I Today - 2
45 The Rosebud Period
46 Angular and Giddy
47 Sandin, N. A., Computer
48 Hot Trailers
“9/11 IS OK”
1933-09-11 – Pono was born
No, I don’t actually remember this, but it is well documented that on this auspicious date, Pono was born at Newport Hospital in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, and soon after he started writing Ponograms.
1945-04-12 – I was 11, 6th grade
We were listening to news on the radio and heard that President Franklin Delano Roosevelt had died! FDR was the only President I had ever known – I was pretty sure the world would come to an end. I jumped on my bike and raced over to my friend’s house and called him out. He couldn’t come out to play, but I told his folks about FDR and they were as shocked as my folks had been.
1945-08-06 and 09 – almost 12, 6th grade
The radio and newspapers were full of stories about Hiroshima and Nagasaki. To me, the numbers of dead and injured were astronomical – I couldn’t get my mind around them. A school assignment was to write a report on the atomic bombs. I think that was a great idea and I got into it, collecting news articles, listening to the radio, and trying to sort it all out. I finally found a copy of that report and it gives some insight into what I was thinking at the time.
Pono in the 1944-1945 timeframe
1963-11-22 – 30 yrs. old, at work
We were enjoying a mid-morning coffee break in the snack bar of our company in Santa Monica, CA when we heard people running in the hallway. The news spread like wildfire – President John F. Kennedy had been shot! I remember the day and the place very clearly, but I don’t remember the event shaking me or my life very much.
1969-07-21 – nearly 36 yrs. old, at apartment in Bangkok, Thailand
I was up and ready, but I decided to postpone going to work in order to see the planned TV coverage of activities on the moon. The TV quality was not very good, but it was good enough to let us know that the moon landing and the eventual step of the first man on the moon was indeed successful! Although I had no part in that activity (except for my tax dollars), when I got in to work I was forced to accept the congratulations of my Thai colleagues!
1986-01-28 – 53 yrs. old, at work
We were just nicely into the day in our offices in Van Nuys, CA. I finished a meeting and opened my office door. A friend and co-worker was standing there with a sick look on his face. He reported that the Shuttle Challenger launch had gone bad 73 seconds after liftoff and from all appearances it had disintegrated!
The accident was horrible to all Americans, but we had been working on Shuttle activities for many years and it was very personal to us. We were all devastated.
1994-01-17 – 60 yrs. old, asleep in a motel in Orange County, CA
I woke up to movement and noises. The wall-mounted TV threatened to drop and the creaking and shaking was fierce. I knew it was a big one, but had no idea where it was centered. I went back to sleep, knowing I’d be up soon enough to get the details.
By the time I got in to the office in Seal Beach I had learned that it was called the Northridge earthquake and it was a vigorous 6.7 on the Richter scale. I feared the worst since our home in Tarzana was dangerously close to Northridge. A call resulted in good and bad news. The family was fine, but the house was ravaged. Son JR happened to be at home that night and after tending to his mother and our house, he went around the neighborhood helping people turn off gas and water services.
I guess I was lucky not to experience that one first hand, but the effect on our house was enormous and I certainly remember exactly where I was.
Front porch, wall and fireplace damage
Accumulation of the destruction
2001-09-11 Hemet, CA
I had been in Bar Harbor, ME with my son JR and flew from Bangor, ME to Boston to connect with a 9/10 flight from Boston to Los Angeles (LAX). The trip was uneventful. After arrival in LAX I picked up a car and drove to Hemet, CA for a short visit with my brother Bud.
The next morning we got up, had a light breakfast, and tried to plan the day. I had to call my Credit Union and transfer some money, so I decided to get that done. The clerk and I completed the transaction and she noted that today, 9/11, was my birthday. She said it was a shame that all this should happen on my birthday. I asked her what she meant by “all this”. She explained that the USA was under attack and went on to tell about planes hitting buildings in the East and something going on at LAX. We concluded our call and I turned on the TV. Bud and I spent the rest of the day trying to make sense of what we were seeing.
At some point I was shocked to learn that two of the four hijacked planes were intended to be Boston to LAX flights, just like the one I took the day before!
Eventually we got around to wondering how the events would impact us. Bud didn’t have any travel plans, but I was scheduled to leave from LAX on 9/14 to return home to Maui. We continued to monitor developments and learned that airports were to reopen on 9/14. The plan was followed and on 9/14 my flight went out as scheduled. I was apprehensive, but happy to be headed home.
The flight was normal and arrived on time in Maui. I picked up my luggage and went to the phones to get transportation to my condo. In that process I was told that the airport was being shut down and evacuated. I followed the crowds into the parking lot. Soon, security came out and moved us out beyond the parking lot into the exit road. We all milled about, trying to figure out what was happening and what to do about it.
In a flash of lucidity it occurred to me that I was on the right island, I had everything I traveled with, I had no ongoing need for the airport, so why was I hanging around? Just to make sure, I checked with a security person and she agreed with my assessment, so I took off walking. I knew that if I could get to the Dairy Road area, I’d be able to find a taxi, so that was my goal.
Just a kilometer up the road (which was of course blocked to incoming traffic) I saw a taxi on the outgoing side ahead of me picking up a lady and a child and lots of luggage. She had taken a cart from the airport to move all her stuff. I hurried a little and got there before they left. I negotiated a shared ride and piled in. The lady only went about 2 miles into Kahului, so I told her I’d pick up the tab. The taxi got me home and I breathed a sigh of relief. Never did find out why the Maui airport was shut down.
A few days later I was filing away the travel documents and I ran across the note to Kathy the travel agent telling her what I needed. I had given her “desired” dates, but always indicated that I was flexible. Regarding the leg from Boston to LAX I specified 9/10, but in parentheses I wrote “9/11 is OK also”!