Sunday, November 25, 2007

Mackin' Hanalei Bay

Reports started filterin' in of whompin' 12-15+ waves hitting the north shore starting friday. I had not had a chance to spend much time in Hanalei, so I loaded up the van with cameras and boards, grabbed a bag of sunflower seeds and and went on a surfin' seed spittin excursion to get wet and explore a little more of beautiful Kauai. After talkin' with a few friends down at the beach they mentioned a spot called Donkey Beach would be a little less intense. It seemed a better plan than trying to go from 2-3 Kalapaki Beach rollers to huge outer reef crushers. So I made my first destination which I later found out has a bit of a spicy past as nude beach but has since been cleaned up and policed.

I took the alternate route that goes around Kapa'a and ended up at where I had thought the walk to Donkey Beach began. The spot is called Kealia and I was at a bonfire there once before. I asked a lady who had just got out of the water and what looked to me like windy choppy conditions. She let me know that it was not this beach where the path started but actually the next turnout up the hill where the path begins. Back in the car and a few miles later. I had found the parking area which looked clean and freshly built. Some dude pickin' up litter pointed me in the direction of the path. He didn't know much about the surfin' there.

A ten minute walk down a paved path brought me down to a stretch of beach. With exception of two hikers (with clothes on) over on the far side of the trail there was nobody else there. Nobody was in the water which as I had feared was windy and blown out.

I cruised out to the end of the beach where I had spotted a flotsam structure that somebody had built out on the tip of a lava rock point on the far side of the beach. After I walked around for a bit and taking a few more pics I headed back up the hill and started for Hanalei.

Twenty minutes later and several miles of gorgeous tropical scenery I found myself in the town of Hanalei. I drove through town to the other side of the bay and could see the jumbo style waves breakin' way outside. I drove back into town to get a better look at the dudes surfin' I didn't really know where the breaks were so I just picked a road that went the direction of the beach. I followed the road past some really cool houses right on the beach until it ended in a very congested parking area. Yeah... the word was definitely out about the swell and the beach was buzzin' with surf rats, locals, tourist all makin' the scene. Although wind had died down , the surf was way more mellower on the inside and looked like a lot of fun it was way to crowded for me to get excited about getting into.

I walked out to the end of the pier where kids were jumpin' off and people were fishin' from and watched all the whole party take place.

I was able to see the waves better from the pier but I really could of used some binoculars to get a better veiw of the guys surfin' those bombers. I got a few pics but you can barely make out the surfers.

After watchin' the surf action for awhile and the guys on jet Skis pulling dudes out of the impact zone I headed back torward Kapa'a where I was house sittin' over the holidays. On my way out of Hanalei I pulled over and snapped a few shots of the Taro and the loi (taro patch).

Although I didn'tget wet it was a pretty nice way to spend the day. Next time I go up to Hanbalei I think I will be leaving much earlier in the morning and will plan do some campin'.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Searchers from the Tikis & Turtle Series

Here is another one of the characters from the turtle series I was doing for the
Tiki Magazine Bali Hai Art Show
which was a blast by the way. These guys were done using a acrylic wash for a background on a canvas that I had sitting around for awhile. After I had most of the background and shapes blocked in I sealed it with polyurethane and went at it with the trusty, yet temperamental at times, paint pens. The final had a sea grass frame around it which along with the painted canvas was mounted on a piece of masonite board to help give it some girth. I gave this one to my sister for her birthday. You may still see or better yet hear more about the Turtles and Tiki Travelers Once the
Coconut Wired Under Ground Testing
is complete.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Concaves, Pollo Del Mar and Davie Allen At Moe's Alley in Santa Cruz

I got a heads up from my ol buddy Big Tiki Dude the other day on my IM telling me Davie Allen and the Arrows were touring California and would be playing in Santa Cruz along with Pollo Del Mar and The Concaves on Saturday night at Moe's Alley. After a fun filled musical day of jammin' with friends from the Uke Club of Santa Cruz and a few drinks, I thought headin' in to town for some surf music would be a nice way to round out what had become a super killer trip to the mainland. Unfortunately, I missed most of the Concaves set, but did get a chance to say hello to JD and Bill. Pollo Del Mar was tight as ever and it was cool to catch up Ferenc and Jono again as well as meet their bass player Jeff. Davie Allen was amazing and had recruited Sam and Brian from Dick Dale's band to play with him for a scorching set of loud and fuzzy goodness. Dave told the audience that they had only a few days to practice the songs but they sounded like they had been playin' together for years. I also had the privilege of meetin', chirpin' and hangin' out with the MC of the evening Unsteady Freddie. Dang my ears are still smilin'.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Jammin' with the Sea Monkeys

We had a fun little jam at my Mom's house on Saturday. I invited some folks over and before I knew it there was a full on band jammin' away! Big Good fun with The Sea Monkeys!

Tiki Crawl San Francisco

Well, I charged out to the city of San Francisco on Saturday to hook up with the crawlers at the Bamboo Hut. I thought I was on a lucky streak and popped into a prime parking spot, but was informed by the local bums that my parkin' place, which was unmarked with no tow away warnings clearly visible, was a in fact in a tow zone and that I would not have a truck waitin' for me when I returned . So after 45 minutes of looking for another parkin' place and ranting to myself how much I hate driving in the city I finally found a legit place to park. Sadly, by this time I had missed everyone at the Bamboo Hut and didn't realize it until about and hour later. I finished my drink and decided to try to meet up with everyone at Trader Vic's S.F. As I was leaving I walked past a lady talkin' on her phone who was saying she was gonna catch a cab over to Trader Vic's. I was quick to say to her "You Navigate and i'll drive." The deal was sealed and Kat and I quickly found T.V and a parkin' spot right in front. NICE! So we joined the party inside and had ourselves a blast. The folks at T.V. were super friendly and helped to make it a heck of a good time. Several Mai Tais and smiles later, I was back in the truck and chooglin' back to Santa Cruz. Thinkin' to myself that it was worth the drive and parkin' difficulty to see all my friends again. Once again, I took pics and here they be:

Friday, November 09, 2007

Tiki Crawl VII (South Bay)

The kick off of Tiki Crawl 7 was good fun! Although I missed the action live at Smoke Tiki I was able to watch some of the shenanigans via the live stream
that Hanford had hooked up through the dudes at I had to remind myself that I was suppose to be enjoying it live so I packed up all my cameras and camcorders and headed toward San Jose to meet up with my ol buddy Bamzeno who runs We charged over to the San Jose Airport to visit the internationally known Martini Monkey. The bar was packed with friendly familiar faces who all looked to be havin' a good ol time. We were there for about the time it took me to finish my drink before we burned gears over to Trader Vic's Palo Alto. It was a bit more relaxed and quieter than over at the Martini Monkey, but it was much easier to talk with folks and move around. It seemed to me there was some drop off of people along the way but there was still a nice group of people hangin' about. I pulled out my camcorder and cameras while attempting to get some shots but I was plagued with tech gremlins the entire evening with all 3 cameras I had brought along. I am not sure what happened but very little of my video footage survived and what did was Crap! I did manage to get some pics taken by shuffling around batteries and memory cards between devices. So here is a slide show with what I did manage to not screw up.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Takin' it easy, crusin' the coast and hangin' out

After an evening of fun at Bali Hai, the next day was very low key. Big Tiki Dude managed to talk a few of us into getting breakfast at the Broken Yolk in Pacific Beach. Although loud, the food was good and we were seated instantly upon arriving despite the full house. Grog, Swampfire, Atomic Kitty, Kirby, Big Tiki Dude and I enjoyed a nice breakfast and interesting conversation. It was very interesting and cool listening to each other as we talked about art, our careers and the the highs and lows of trying to make a living in a creative field. I passed around a paper napkin and had everyone scribble a doodle on it.

After Breakfast we said so long to Big Tiki Dude and Swamp Fire and headed back to Humphrey's. The rest of us stopped by Trader Mort's Liquor store to take a look inside and get a few shots of the tikis that decorate the place. Grog, Suzy and Kirby dropped me off and hit the road. I tracked down Tiki Chris
and Tiki Racer by the poolside. We chatted a bit, I took a few more pics and then split back to Encinitas to drop off the van I had borrowed and too hang out with Sean, Erica and Kai one last time before headin' north. The next morning Chris and Steve picked me up and we started our trek north. We stopped at Tiki Farm too meet up with the always gracious Makedamug who gave us a nice tour of the warehouse and magoomba along with a short history of the Farm and a preview of upcoming projects. We picked up several mugs said our good byes and then charged down to Little Lost Tiki's art studio for an art jam/ Tiki Frat party. LLT hooked Tiki Racer and I up with art supplies and technique tips. We all got creative while Chris snapped some pics. A bit later Squid had stopped by and so did Big Tiki Dude and Jon Paul with some rum and snacks. It wasn't long before we were all laughin' and havin' a good ol time drinkin', creatin' art and makin' up names for Jon Paul to use as a handle on Tiki Central, most of which should not be repeated.

A few hours of mindless fun later we hit the road again. Tiki Racer kept a lid on his drinkin' and safely drove us another couple hours North to Ventura where we crashed my Mom's house. The following morning we fueled up at a local breakfast nook then pounded miles to Santa Cruz and made very good time. After we arrived at my Mom's other house up North we relaxed a bit with her and my Sis, then went out for some ono grinds at The Aloha Island Grille. As luck would have it a few of my friends from The Ukulele Club of Santa Cruz were having a small ukulele jambalamba. We ate our tasty hawaiian dinners, chatted a bit and listened to the uke players croon before poppin' over to Hula's in downtown Santa Cruz for a few Mai Tais, Zombies and more tiki vibes. A few drinks later we ended the evening.

We all woke up the next morning pretty early and said our goodbyes. Tiki Racer, who is now a good friend and all around groovy mate, is headin' back to jolly old England on Thursday and passed along to me some of his nifty Tiki London prints, a Mahiki menu that he designed and one of his crazy cool Zombie Mugs. Chris is stayin' in the states for a few more days so I will be hookin' back up with him during the 7th annual San Francisco Tiki Crawl. Which will be streamed live during the crawl for those of you who can't make it to the Bay area this weekend. Boy oh boy is this gonna be great!

Here are some of my pics and I am sure Tiki Chris will have some of his pics posted when he has some free time.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Tiki Magazine's Art Show at Bali Hai

After six days of non stop music, art, laughter and time spent with good friends and ohana I have finally gotten a chance to catch up with my blog. I left Kauai Thursday afternoon and flew over to Honolulu. Between island flights I had changed seats and left my ipod case along with my camera cables in the seat pocket in front of me. I remembered I had done so as we were taking off for Maui, but by the time I was able to get up out of my seat and go back to where I was sitting it was too late. Fortunately, a flight attendant had found it before anybody could nerp it. Unfortunately, he had given the case to the agent in Honolulu so I was without my tunes and worse yet my cables to get the pictures from my camera onto my laptop. I was hopin' this was not going to be the way my luck was going to go for the rest of my trip.

After what felt like a pretty quick flight, I landed in San Diego around 11:00 pm. My Friend Sean came out to pick me up and stay at his pad in Encinitas. The next day we got up early and caught some really fun (but kinda chilly) 3-4' surf out in front of his house at Cardiff reef.

Sean and his wife Erica lent me their van and hooked me up with a mattress inside so I wouldn't have to worry about driving buzzed back from the Tiki Magazine's Bali Hai Art Show which I was participating in later that night. I left early to get to the Bali Hai and give myself plenty of time to set up and chat before the show. However, I ended sitting in traffic for hours because some idiot was leaving pipe bombs along the highway thus shutting down huge sections of the freeways that lead into San Diego. Those damn Tiki Terrorist had struck again!

Eventually I made it to Shelter Island and was still early enough to get in some quality time with a few of the other artists and early birds as well as secure a nice spot to display my art thanks to Mean Gene at Falling Cocos. The quality of art was mind blowin' and my eyes were droolin'. Seeing so much fantastic art work in one place was making me dizzier than the Mai-Tai's I was slurpin' down. The Tiki Magazine and Bali Hai Staff did a fanatastic job of putting together a history making event that brought together an amazing amount of talent all under one roof. Adding to the ambiance was the smooth sounds of the Smokin' Menehunes and the swaying moves of gorgeous Hula dancers.

After the show a large gaggle of revelers found themselves partyin' with Ali'i in his room at Humphrey's By The Bay which is a hotel with a tropical theme and plenty of tikis near the Bali Hai. As usual, large crowds are hard to keep hushed so security was quickly there to say good night to us all. So we made our way to the club at Humphrey where we all got loose and shook our bones to a funky bunch of dudes singin' music I never thought I would ever ever listen to unless forced by gun point.

So after a few more drinks and the passing of time our troops began to thin. We all made our way to places to lie our heads and let the visions of tropical fantasy escort us into our dreams. Here is a slide show from the fun filled evening of art, music and friends: