Category Archives: History

Throwback Thursday: Construction c.1970?

I ran into this photo while digging in a coupe of boxes looking for potential Throwback photos.

I’m guessing this was taken around 1970.

Is that high-rise the Contessa condominium, near where the end of King Street hits Kapiolani?

Or perhaps one of those condos near Kapiolani and Date?

And what vantage point is the photo taken from?

But I’m sure I took the photo, and the 1970 time frame seems about right.

What’s your guess on the location and time frame?

By the way, just click on the photo to see a larger version.


Throwback Thursday: On Kauai in 1963

It was August 1963, a family trip to Kauai. I was ready to start my junior year at University High School in Honolulu, also known as the UH Lab School.

The photo was taken as we stopped at a lookout at Hanalei Valley.

It looks like I’m holding an old 8mm movie camera. If so, where are those films? Ah, I can see another round of digging through boxes of “stuff” in search of long lost films.

But that’s for another Thursday.

Click here if you’re interested in a few more photos from this trip.

Kauai 1963

It’s that time of year again

We were well along on our early morning walk this morning when we met two friends coming along the beach in the other direction.

“Say ‘happy anniversary’,” Meda said.

One of them, looking quizzically, responded. “Happy anniversary.”

Meda replied with a smile.

“Thank you.”

Yup. The earth has completed another circuit of the sun, trees have added another growth ring, sea level has risen another tenth of an inch somewhere, and we’ve both survived another year together.

Just for fun, I dug out the photo record of our adventurous anniversary back a decade ago in 2006, when we made the rounds of some of Meda’s favorite thrift stores. Just click on the photo below to see more of that day.


Today will be different.

The longtime secretary of the Women’s Studies Department at UH Manoa passed away over the weekend, and as department chair, Meda will be dealing with the bureaucracy that goes with the sad occasion. With just a week before classes start, getting at least a temporary secretary is a necessity, but I doubt it’s going to be easy. And then she will spend the afternoon in a different personnel committee meeting interviewing candidates for a top Manoa administrative position.

Meanwhile, my sister is hoping to return to her apartment later this week after six weeks in the hospital and a Liliha nursing home, and there are a lot of loose ends that I have to nail down to ease the transition.

Not exactly the stuff that celebrations are made of, but it will have to do. Maybe we’ll stop and pick up some takeout tonight from one of our local Thai restaurants. Then we’ll get home, feed the cats, give Duke his evening insulin shot, open a bottle of wine, and enjoy what’s left of the day.

“Let the good times roll,” he said, his voice rich with irony.

Oh, here’s a photo from that Big Day long ago.

Wedding Day

Throwback Thursday: Somewhere around 1966

Another oldie. That’s me and my girlfriend at the time, I think in 1966, a couple of years before I met Meda.

Loxey and I met in high school, and maintained a long distance relationship after I left to attend Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington.

We had obviously been spending a lot of time in the sun before this picture was taken, so it has to be at the end of the summer.

I could be wrong, but I pretty sure this wasn’t my first trip to Whitman as a freshman. So I’ll guess it was taken in late August or early September 1966, when I was returning for my sophomore year.

The belt…a real throwback, and probably the last pair of shoes that I ever owned that had to be shined.


A bridge named for Joan

the Long Beach Press-Telegram reported last night that a resolution calling for the Alamitos Bay Bridge in Long Beach to be renamed in honor of my cousin, rowing legend Joan Van Blom, had been passed by the California Legislature.

Final action on the resolution authorizing the the Joan Lind Van Blom Memorial Bridge, SCR 102, was taken yesterday, August 5, 2016.

Joan’s dad, Tom Lind, was my father’s younger brother.

Joan died in August 2015 of an aggressive brain cancer.

From the Press-Telegram story:

“From the Olympic stage to the classroom, Joan Lind Van Blom was a woman who displayed great courage and a commitment to uplift her country and community,” Sen. Janet Nguyen, who proposed the legislation, said in a statement Friday.

Nguyen, who represents a small part of Long Beach, introduced the legislation at the request of the Long Beach Century Club, a nonprofit dedicated to the promotion of amateur athletes in the city. Van Blom is a member of the club’s Hall of Fame.

Van Blom is a member of the Wilson High School Hall of Fame, the Long Beach State 49er Hall of Fame Century Club, the National Rowing Hall of Fame, and was declared a lifetime member of the Long Beach Rowing Association. A number of other memorials and tributes were announced in the months after her death.

She earned medals in the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal and in the quadruple sculls in 1984 in Los Angeles.

Beyond rowing, Van Blom spent 35 years as a physical education instructor for the Long Beach Unified School District.

Van Blom “is one of the most remarkable athletes to ever live and was even more impressive for her dedication to her Long Beach community,” Councilwoman Suzie Price said in a statement. “Having a bridge in east Long Beach named after her will serve as a daily reminder of the positive legacy she has left behind.”

The resolution in its final form can be found here.