Apr 12, 2012

The Most Interesting Man in the World Died Two Years Ago

His name was Knisley Dreher. “K” for short.  Not Agent K in Men in Black.  Not Special K the cereal.  He was The Most Interesting Man in the World.

All of those claims by Dos Equis are false … in case you do not recognize that by their implausibility.  Even so, it is important to know that there really was a Most Interesting Man in the World, and he walked among us (to borrow a phrase).

K Dreher was born in Illinois.  He went to the University of Illinois.  He married Nancy  Sprague and had three great sons.  They raised them in Connecticut, and K plied the last car bars on the commuter trains from New York.   He wasn’t drinking Dos Equis. No.  K was a vodka lover.

He was a man’s man.  He was also woman’s man.  He later married again (twice) and had two more children.  And his children had children.  And his children’s children had children.  He loved them all.

K, The Most Interesting Man in the World, spent much of his professional life working for the engineering/construction/development giant, Parsons Corporation, whose website tells us that they have been “Delivering Innovative Solutions Since 1944.”    No doubt K’s arrival contributed most interestingly to those solutions.

With his work at Parsons, K traveled and worked all over the world, living in faraway places including Saudi Arabia where he built an entire city (Yanbu), Saigon, Manila, London, Jakarta, Singapore, Jeddah,  Hong Kong and Taipei.  Living in these places would make anyone interesting, but since K started out interesting, his travels just underscored his position as The Most Interesting Man in The World.

I first met The Most Interesting Man in the World here in Hawai`i in the seventies, along with my best Hawai`i friend, Liz Howard.  It was a wild time in Hawai`i, in the seventies, and we never knew where we’d end up once we started our day.  We met K through his son Nick.  Unlike most of our fathers, K was handsome beyond belief, funny and brilliant.  Remember:  he was The Most Interesting Man in the World.  We all wanted him, but we could not have him.

For a time, we lost track of The Most Interesting Man in the World, but he reappeared in Hawai`i about 20 years later.  While living in Vietnam, he developed lung cancer and came back to Hawai`i, where his son Nick nursed him back to health.  About a year later, Nick set up a date for K with  Liz.  My husband, Mark, and I were invited and had the great pleasure of seeing the first blinks of a wonderful relationship that would last for 17 years.  K died at home with Liz at his bedside.    He greeted death wearing a t-shirt that said “I am going to come back and haunt you fuckers,” and he donated his body to the John Burns School of Medicine.

Why was he The Most Interesting Man in the World?  First of all, he was born that way.  Then, he lived a life that could fill ten thousand lives.  He gave generously of himself where ever he was.  He grew into his amazing kindness as he aged.  He was a great raconteur.  He had more friends than anyone could count.  He scuba dived, boated and golfed among other sports … and was good at all of them.  He read voraciously, devouring huge, important books in a day. He had well formed, articulate and interesting opinions.   The world never outpaced him.  He loved music.  He had an eye for beautiful things.  He had a beautiful twinkle in his eye and he suffered the slings of outrageous aging with humor and grace.

No one will ever replace K.  There will never be a man as interesting as The Most Interesting Man in The World.  Those of us who knew him are far more interesting than we would have been otherwise.  Please K, come back and haunt us fuckers.  We miss you so.

Apr 11, 2012

Joe McCarthy of Another Hue, Another Era

Tell A Big Enough Lie…

Enough already.  We have spent the last year hearing about how Obama is a European Socialist.

Now comes professional idiot Allen West to tell that he has heard that “about 80 Democrats are communists.”

We are really in the 1950s now.  Thank you, MAD MEN, for getting the ball rolling.    I hope that you didn’t know what you had started?  White men rejoiced.  Now a black man is talking communism.

WTF?  I mean. really.  What parallel universe have we found ourselves in?

Apr 11, 2012


Sensational Smile!

I arrived in Hawai`i 41 years ago, an East Coast refugee, a new bride and a haole.  I was 21 years old, married to a man who was a fourth generation kama`aina (haole nonetheless, but a different kind of haole than I was  — FOJ for Fresh Off the Jet).  He was enrolled in the John Burns School of Medicine, and I was enrolled in nothing,  My husband’s family was also fourth generation at Punahou.  Armed with his pull and the teaching certificate that accompanied my BA from Smith College I was able to land a job as a permanent substitute in a fifth grade class at Hawai`i`s most influential school.

Although I had a reasonably good pedigree from the mainland, I soon found that it counted for nothing in Hawai`i.  No one wanted to know where you went to college, they were interested in your high school:  to see if you went to Punahou.  As glad as I was to have a job there, I was unnerved.

It turned out the teacher of the class I was to sub for had been to Africa the previous year, and needed a daily substitute for the time she taught a seminar about Africa at the high school.  She had asked for the lone African American in the fifth grade to be in her class, knowing that his father was from Kenya.  I felt badly for him because there was no one there who looked like him.  Come to think of it, there were few that looked like me.  It was the first time I had really seen Asian faces.

I was a terrible teacher.  For reasons still unknown to me, I was assigned to teach Hawaiian History – about which I knew nothing.  I could barely pronounce any of the “K” words that make up the Hawaiian language.  .

One day, I discovered that the African American kid (whose beautiful, confident smile lit up the class) was the child of a black African and a white American.  He wasn’t black.  He wasn’t white.  He belonged here more than I did.  He was Hapa.  Hawai`i is the only place I know of that has an acceptable definition of someone of mixed race:  they are Hapa (or half).

I left Punahou after that year, and he went on to sit next to my sister-in-law in biology class and ask her huge Hawaiian boyfriend Francis if he could dance with her at the prom.  I didn’t know any of this until I was working with Punahou 25 years later and the place was abuzz with the news that Punahou graduate Barry Obama was going to run for the U.S. Senate in Illinois.

Having railed that Punahou was a feeder for the banks and the businesses on Bishop Street, I was dumbstruck that a graduate of Punahou was a public servant.  And I knew him.  In fact, everything he knew about fifth grade Hawaiian History, he learned from me.

Thrilled beyond belief, I immediately sent a check to his Chicago campaign office.  I was suddenly crazy about a fifth grader (frozen in my mind as he was) I had known briefly more than 25 years ago.   I couldn’t get enough of Barry Obama.  When my business partner and I were in Chicago, we walked for many, many blocks to his campaign office, where we discovered only a couple of people with nothing to sell us.  I gave them a check and they gave me a bumper sticker:  Obama.  Democrat.  U.S. Senate Continue reading »

Apr 11, 2012

The Season of The White White Man

Super Smirker

Time to stop listening to the political hoorah.    Republic Rag is over, and now Christie’s fellow fatso Karl Rove and the rest of their ilk will set about trying to destroy President Obama.

No point in listening because they are all professional liars and fact fiddlers and they will do anything to “defeat Obama.”  Romney’s little trick about the War on Women being about jobs is just his latest shape shift.

And now transvaginal ultrasound promoter and Vice Presidential hopeful, smarmy smiler Bob McDonnell  is back on the stump.

Tune out, I say, tune out.  We know  what Obama has done, and what they have failed to do.

Apr 11, 2012

Fat Boy Fudges Figures

Help Me Find My Neck!

Chris Christie’s “I am fatter than you are,” in-your-face attitude is catching up with him.

Turns out the mega-transportation project he canceled because of his “principles” had none of the problems he decried.  He over-estimated the project’s max cost by several billion dollars and lied about the percentage of the cost that his State would have to bear:  he said New Jersey would have to pay 70%.  In fact, it’s share would have been 14.4 percent.

New Jersey Senator Frank Lautenberg is making the left wing media rounds today letting the world know that Governor Fatty-Fatty-Two-By-Four, at a minimum, “misrepresented” the facts to his constituency.   He cost New Jersey a big opportunity  — maybe not as big as he is, but BIG.

This may top his radio show I-don’t-give-a-shit about New Jersey’s public schools comments…

He won’t get the VEEP spot.  Maybe he will leave his family for Ann Coulter.  Or some fudge.








Gloria. Circa 1955.

Gloria. Circa 2012.

Other than working for the American Red Cross in Korea for two years, Gloria Garvey has lived in Hawai`i since 1971. Her opinion and other writing has appeared in: The American Philatelist. Honolulu Weekly, The Honolulu Advertiser, The Honolulu Star Bulletin, The Star Advertiser, Hawai`i Reporter, Pacific Business News, Island Scene, The Design Management Journal.

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