Cap’n we’ve got a problem…


 In previous editions of this blog I have mentioned my proclivity towards Aloha shirts. There’s almost always been at least one in my closet since the Hedges brought us back matching shirts from Hawaii in the early ‘60s.


My first Hawaiian shirt

I had a few when I first moved to Chicago. In New Jersey it became my way of saying “Yo, I ain’t frum ‘round heres”. Upon our return to San Diego we saw a bunch of cool shirts at street fairs. This winter in New England I discovered there is a huge number of people trading shirts on Ebay.

This became my “winter sport” of choice.

Just a couple of weeks ago the lovely Miss Amy looked at me and asked, “Just how many Hawaiian shirts do you think you have?”

Thinking it was 20, I said, “Oh, maybe 16”

Amy then marched down to my closet and came back grinning…

“You have 39 Hawaiian shirts. Thirty-nine!”

Even I will admit that this is a serious problem.

I’ll also admit that the only reality show that will stop my channel surfing is “Hoarders”. I’d like to point out that this is one of the few actual “Reality” shows on TV. These people are genuinely whack-a-doodle as opposed to the totally scripted, fake-o Ridiculous Housewives of Who Friggin’ Cares.

In our last episode Bianca threw her wooden leg at Clarisse when she accused her of using a ghost writer for her submission to the “Housewives Who’ve Never Even Seen a Damn Kitchen Cookbook”.

OK…so getting back to the subject –  here is the issue


Alright, now I know you’re thinking that’s a nice shot of the Hilo Hattie store in Maui…but, uh…no…that’s my closet. I can now wear a different colorful shirt every day of the month. Amy has taken to saying “Oh, that old shirt, again?” when I repeat a shirt. I’m starting to feel like the Imelda Marcos.

Women don’t understand Hawaiian shirts so decided to go to the worldwide expert on Hawaiian shirts…The Dude.

I found him in a dark bowling alley bar in Encinitas. I slid onto the cracked naugahyde stool next to him. An out of balance fan slowly circled overhead, stirring the dusky air. The bright sunshine outside couldn’t cut the atmosphere of 60 years of sweat, alcohol and lies. It stopped at the door like an underage kid with a fake ID.

“I hope you didn’t come for advice, man. They always come for advice, and I’m just out, man. I useta know.  I breathed the waves. I useta just…feel. I knew what was right. The wave…the hit…the chick. Well, not so much the chick.  Now I get a check every month that buys 107 beers. I don’t have the answers…”

“It’s about the shirts, they keep calling”. I whispered. “I don’t know what to tell my wife.”

He slowly turned, bathed in the warm light from the Hamm’s Beer sign, “Dude, it’s all about nuance…”.

I flew back to Boston contemplating. So what is the solution here? I could:

  1. Join a Hawaiian band and play at Luaus and Parrothead meetings
  2. Go back to working on cruise ships
  3. Grow a ponytail, buy an old Vette and complete the total second adolescence look

Or maybe I’ll pitch a new reality show 

Also, I might just point out that John Lasseter – the head of Pixar – is in deep waaaay over me.


Well…at least I don’t collect yard gnomes.



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