Only in Samoa? ...hmmm...maybe.

This is a "funny", sad, tragic and sick story. Yes, sick!

If you’re someone who reads the Samoa Observer online, then you would have read about a “short-finned pilot whale” stranded on a beach at one of the villages in the “Navigator Islands.”

According to the report the whale was stranded because “it was sick.” Now, today, in most countries - not all - the animal would have been rescued/saved, nursed back to health, cared for and then released. But not in these islands where by the time marine conservationists arrived, “portions of the whale had already been cut and parts of it were used for oil, while some eaten.”  Wow, sick!

But how would anyone explain or justify the actions of these villagers on the poor thing? Well actually there are several or maybe a few reasons. Let me count:

1. Is it religion? These are church-going, Bible believing people and they would say, subconsciously at least, that man was given “dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowls of the air, ....”  Haha ..dominion or duh-minion?  now that's sick!

2. Is it culture? Samoans believe in luck and/or serendipity at best. They recite the native expression “Ua faiva ese lo Pepe” which welcomes any good fortune, no matter how it’s obtained....Another common expression that encourages the same attitude is “Ae’ae ia lea manu ua ulu,” (Let’s avail ourselves to unexpected fortunes.) especially when the villagers - according to the report - tried to push the whale back to sea while on the reef and yet it still drifted back to shore ...Regardless, it's still sick!

3. Is it appetite? These islanders love to eat and feast ...Oh yeah? ...still a sick excuse, and I hope they don’t get sick or become sickly! By the way, have you heard of some victims of the 2009 tsunami who died because they were busy collecting the fishes left by the receding tide? ...  sickos!

4. Is it conquest? What? ... Huh? ...How?

Ok, can we really blame these natives for their impetuous satiety? Put on your thinking taumata (fisherman’s visor/cap).

These islanders are descendants of seafaring ancestors and warriors. They survived from their conquests of the biggest ocean on the planet and the sometimes forbidding environment. The sea is their main source of livelihood and survival. But the sea also is a colosseum for their young adventurous marine gladiators.

As a little boy, I have seen days when the fisherman sat atop the heroes’ pedestal. In these navigator islands, a fisherman who catches a shark makes a victory and honor “lap” before mooring. As soon as he crosses the reef channel into the lagoon area, he raises his paddle straight up and spins it while doing an impression of the Michael Jackson high pitched scream. The natives call the utterance a faaumu or onomatopoeically, a “choosoosoo”. This is to announce to the villagers that he has returned with a sizeable catch; he’s won a trophy. The fish (almost always a shark) will then be cut up and distributed among the families, including the pastor/minister.

In other words, even a stranded sea animal may and can still be considered a catch, hence a victory and conquest for the natives, albeit over a helpless and sick - but still edible - sea creature.  LOL!

So, there.

Well, again, I hope these islanders do not get sick from eating meat from a sick sea monster. Either they’ll get really sick or - based on some modern slangy scrumptious context of the buzzword - they’ll just say, while munching on a big pilot whale fillet “Mmmmmm, this is sick!”

Oh, and speaking of getting sick from eating certain foods, I was surprised at the muli (oops, I mean si’usi’u) pipi (turkey tail) ban by the government. Only in Samoa too? Hey, Stui, and HRPP, how about banning alcohol and cigarettes - or at least a huge quantity of them? I hear that they are planning a second brewery in the country. Is there not enough beer in Samoa? And don’t tell me that Vailima is generating a lot of revenue from overseas sales. Yeah right! Drink On, I mean Dream On! Even an average Samoan knows that there are many more people getting sick and dying (physically and morally) from effects of tobacco and alcohol than from a tail of a bird.

Also, please let the  doctor, not a government, tell the people what food is good and not good for them!  Or are most of the doctors in Samoa also employed by a government hospital?  Ok, then to that I say, "That's sick!"

Sushi, Valentine and Cheating

There's this great sushi place not far from where we live. Once in a while (ok, more often than that) we would go to this place to eat if not to just certify the expression "variety is the spice of life" - literally. For me, personally, it's an ultimate dining indulgence - and a buffet does not even come close. Of course it's mostly just sushi they serve but there's a whole variety of the treat! I never used to like sushi especially because of its rice content. Yes, they say rice is not healthy, it's starchy and carby and therefore it easily piles on the pounds. But then I think about Shun Shi Miti, Chen Siama Ping and Hu Fung Slim and all their rice paddy field workers who are also big rice eaters in a remote Chinese village, and I'm confused and ...well, indignant. They defy the very myth that haunts me about alaisa. It reminds me of George Burns who huffs and puffs a cigar, as long as he's awake, and still lived to be a hundred. Ok, where's the sense in all this? Let me just say that sometimes it feels good, if not okay, to break some rules!  Lol.  I like to overindulge sometimes.

Enough digressing. So I called Dearie from work (she's still trying to recupe from her week-long bout with the cold and flu) to ask if she wanted to eat at Red Lobster or the sushi place. She said she did not care though sushi sounds appetizing. My band practice (for a post Valentine gig) was canceled and postponed and so we went a-sushiing! No it wasn't just dinner for her, she also got flowers/roses and a couple of gifts. (Happy Valentine!) ...and I got my sushi! Sometimes I think that most holidays are prejudiced and discriminatory. No details and no big deal. "Ish all gud," said one kamaloa, who also said "A fiafia mama, ua fiafia le oraga." (happy wife, happy life!). Ok, I buhleeave!!

But I also learned something important about food and life on the way to the sushi place. The radio was on a country station and a song was playing from which a particular line stuck with me, which I then used to justify and rationalize my occasional breaking of some rules - se o food rules! (Aren't some rules made to be broken anyway?..lol) The line from the song goes something like : "...sometimes I like my women just a little on the trashy side."  Hey, no it's not what you're thinking, you see, I'm a principled guy, yeeepp,  and so I look at, the principle! And the principle says to substitute the words "women" with ‘food", and "trashy" with "junkie" and I was immediately comforted by the fact that I can still occasionally cheat on my healthful diet, and still hope to live to be George Burns' age. And not that sushi aren't good and healthful, in fact these ones have salmon, avocado, tuna and other seafood ingredients. It can't get any healthier than that.

Speaking of wanting my food sometimes on the junkie side, I am one who defies, despises and avoids the "I'm loving it" slogan of the McPlace, but every once in a while (ok, twice, or thrice - ooops, there's that rice word again) I find myself at the drive through - at midnight - ordering two Big Macs. Why midnight? I don't know but it feels good to break some food rules at midnight. One day at church camp, I gulped a total of five or six diet cokes; the last one was imbibed at midnight.  :)

So this past Valentine, I reaffirmed the notion that I can break some food rules and still be at peace with my cheating appetite. And sushi being the main tempter! Was it Oscar Wilde who said that the way to overcome temptation is to yield to it?  Ok, with sushi, I'll do it.   Cheater! ...LOL!


The Occupy Spell

...just for laughs or a spell too, maybe ...lol

The Occupy movement has recently been revived.  I have said that I too am a "99er", but I feel that some fellow ninety-niners are not helping in making the cause a more serious, real and credible one.  When one of the main gripes in these demonstrations involves the lack of decent, meaningful and well-paid jobs, I believe that a protester needs decent spelling skills first to get such a job.  Doncha (hahaa) think?

proffffiiiffffiiiii ....whadever!

Hi!...and what do you read? ... the consifusion? ...hahaha

...or a fief  fo'i ...ia poo "fifi" loa.  O Obama o le sifi (commander) ma le fifi ...lol!

kalofa e, ia polishians ...and "vipers" would have worked better and easier to spell than "diapers," ochay? magaia le sign ae sipelo le sipela

Ia ga le ua Okapppppi! ...chususuuuu!

... and in case "we" thought "we" are the only spell checkers, think again ... the picketers too!  LOL!