“Somehow it wasn’t stable enough and the firework tipped over into the street.”

Oh my God! I had told them, I was like, "Yeah, I don't know about the fireworks. They're pretty dangerous." And like last time I went downtown a few years ago, I was walking around downtown. And I was crossing the bridge by the community college where the park is, this bridge. And someone just beyond the bridge was lighting off fireworks kinda like on the curb. And they did it wrong. They did it wrong. Somehow it wasn't stable enough and the firework tipped over into the street, pointing at people. And it was shooting off at the people like an explosion. I was like, "No!" It was one of those ones that is supposed to go up really high and go "Pew, pew, pew, pew! Psh, psh, psh!" But this one was going into the street, so all you heard was screams. And I was running away.

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“We just didn’t expect New Mexico to be beautiful to look at.”

What was really surprising was how green New Mexico was. We've flown -- 'cause we're from Hawaii -- so we've flown from Hawaii over to Michigan. And the route, the flying route, the airline route, goes across the Southwest. When you're looking down from the airplane, it's all desert. That whole southwest region of the country is pure desert, it's just a beige, sand color. And you wonder, "How in the world did any life exist or survive out there?" Because it looks like -- how in -- how do you find water to stay alive? How do you endure the heat that's in the desert? So we're -- hour after hour after hour -- going through New Mexico. And it was so green. It was such a stark contrast to the deserts of Arizona and the desert of Texas. This one we didn't go through Texas, but we've been to Texas -- the room attendant on the first -- the first room attendant going to LA, he said, "Yes, don't bother with the Texas Eagle route because it's all desert. Nothing to see." But New Mexico had those big plateaus and the mesas, um, the -- it's not canyons but it's these water erosion formations. It had hills and mountains and forests and trees, shrubbery, grasslands for the cattle. And, you know, there was cattle and horses and bear. It was surprising. We just didn't expect New Mexico to, to be beautiful to look at. But the colors of the rocks, they were red and pink, besides the beige sand color. The formation of the mesas and the plateaus was, it was just really lovely to look at.

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“A day later, we were driving to New York City.”

Um, it actually probably truthfully started Spring Break 2014. I went home to visit my family and my two brothers were there. They were in high school at the time and we were all downstairs. I was watching NBA TV on my laptop just ready to lay low for the week. And one of my brothers is like "We should do something." And just really threw it out there like, I think he wanted to go somewhere. I was like "Go somewhere? Like go where?” And he's like, "I dunno, like New York." And you know, we had a good chuckle ‘cause you don't just go to New York, or at least I don't -- never had. And, um, somehow, someway, we just let ourselves think like, "But can we? Like can we really?" Or like, "What's actually stopping us? Like what's literally stopping us from doing it?" And before we knew it, we were entertaining this notion, and a day later, we were driving to New York City, driving to the heart of Manhattan, which was the craziest thing for me. And I know a lot of people go to New York. A lot of people go to big cities, but for me, I never stopped to think -- I never figured I'd go to New York ‘cause I could never think of a good reason to, and it's like, what, am I gonna pay for a plane ticket to New York, and for what? To see the Statue of Liberty? I don't have that kind of money. And then it was such a surreal experience because it seemed like I was locked out of New York City for 30 years of my life. I just didn't know how to even, what context would allow me to ever go there? It just seemed complicated and out of reach, and then because my younger brother's like "Why don't we just go?" And we did. We found ourselves in Times Square like 30 hours later, and I was -- I remember sitting being like "I can't, I can't believe I've done this, we're now in Central Park. I -- yesterday, I was watching NBA TV in my dad's basement and now I'm in a place I never thought I’d actually go."

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“There’s a little sign stuck in the yard that says deliveries and it’s pointing to the back and I’m like ‘Perfect, got the right place.’”

I was delivering to a house on the street where the directions were to park on the side of the house, go around back, and then set the delivery inside a door, like that, you know, there's like a door and then a little mud room or whatever and then another, another door. And so I follow my GPS and I get to the house and I get -- I park on the side and I see oh, there's a little sign stuck in the yard that says deliveries and it's pointing to the back and I'm like "Perfect, got the right place." So I go around the back, go to open the back door, and I'm greeted by two barking dogs, and I'm like, "Okay, that's weird." And then I look up and I'm like, “There's not a door, but there's a doorway, and there isn't this box that I was supposed to put this in.” I'm like, "Okay, this doesn't seem right." So I ended up having to call the customer and they're like, "Yeah, that happens all the time, that GPS sends people to that driveway." And I just thought it was so funny that, you know, I've had GPS send me to very obviously wrong places or things -- places that I'm like, “It does kinda look like it, but, eh, I better check,” and I never have ever gotten out and gone to the wrong house and gotten that far before realizing it was the wrong house. And it was just because the directions matched perfectly.

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“So just in keeping with who I am as a person, have absolutely no chill, whatsoever. Do not know how to turn it off.”

I was counseling at a camp -- I think I've told this story before here -- and I was leading a team. They did a tournament throughout the entire week of camp. So each day your team would play a different sport and then they would do a different activity. And depending on if they won or lost by how much they would get team points and the team with the most points at the end of the week would win a trip to get ice cream. It was very exciting. So one of the games that we played was soccer. And at the time, I think I was playing in college. So just in keeping with who I am as a person, have absolutely no chill, whatsoever. Do not know how to turn it off. I'm going -- and like you know, there is a piece of, “You're supposed to be competitive, like, as the counselors,” and the kids were always stoked if you were like a ringer for whatever the sport was. But most adult counselors kind of took it semi-easy, some of the time.  But anyway, so I'm playing soccer. I, obviously, have my soccer cleats in my car. So I'm like wearing cleats, literally no one else is, or like, maybe three people are. And as I'm walking onto the field the counselor from the other team just in passing mentions, "Hey, this kid is a little bit intimidated or scared of soccer so, you know, just welcome him with open arms." So he's on the other team. And this kid is a freshman or going i- -- maybe going into freshman year, and just so tiny like, he probably hasn't hit puberty, just a really little guy. And I'm sure, you know, give him a summer and he'll be six foot -- feet tall but he was not at that point. So I said "Oh, yeah, of course! Totally, no problem."  And we go onto the field and we're playing and it's fine. And I am playing defense, as I do, and I go to clear the ball, which means kick it very, very far. And I do that and he kind of steps and jumps at the right exact time to get just blasted in the face. I just completely blasted this child in the face. I -- he immediately starts to cry. I…

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“So me and my dad thought that it was just a stray cat.”

At this house they have four cats actually. And surprisingly enough, one of them's name is Pickle. And Pickle's a really nice cat. It's like a white and gray cat, very friendly. But I have a story about Pickle. And it started maybe a couple of months ago. I don't know, it was in 2023. So Pickle literally came to my house, a couple houses down. That hou- -- the cats at that house are kinda just allowed to wander wherever they wanna go. So that's pretty normal, but I think they come back for, like, their dinner or something. I don't know. So, the cat, Pickle, wandered over to our house and the weird thing is for a while, the -- this cat didn't have a collar. So me and my dad thought that it was just a stray cat. And so my dad -- we gave it some milk. And then, maybe like a month later, we actually learned that milk is not good for cats. Um, but yeah, at this time we just thought this cat was a stray because um, it was like, yeah, it just didn't have a collar. But in the present, it only got a col- -- Pickle only got a collar like, um, maybe a month ago. I don't know. Yeah, and Pickle really likes me and my friend. We like to pet him a lot.

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