After much hemming, hawing, debating, researching, and daydreaming it has been decided that we shall be going to HAWAII for vacation this year. The kids are stoked, as am I; I have been to Hawaii only once before, and that was in May of 1983. I went with a Wisconsin school pal on some package deal which was a flight from Chicago and 2 weeks hotel for like $530. I pulled some of the photos out today from that trip.

Here is my friend in front of our rather skanky Waikiki hotel. Who cares if it's skanky? I'm 21 and in HAWAII! I learned to disregard the scrambling huge cockroaches in the bathroom, even.

Here's the view from the Punchbowl. I have kind of a feeling it's a bit more built-up now.

Waikiki Beach. What I recall: super-crowded, windy, lots of giant GIANT fat ladies in straining swimsuits, and that my eyes stung like hell from the salt water. None of this impeded my good time.

Is Don Ho dead? He must be dead now. I had to salute him properly there.

What do you do when you are 21, in a skanky hotel, and feeling like being all GANGSTA? Well, if you were me, you just hang the hotel art work upside-down and bet (correctly) that the housekeepers never notice.

We spent more time at Skank Pool rather than the beach. Isn't it lovely? It didn't matter. I was thrilled to be in the sun by a pool, anywhere.

In the "What Was I Thinking??" Department, I wore a shirt. Just a shirt. It was only about 5 inches longer than the bottom of my cool belt there. This won't be occurring again, and yes, I hear your collective and massive sigh of relief there.

Meet Troy and Chad, the toy dolphins. Troy came home with me, and I believe he survived another 15 or so years until one of my DAMN KIDS broke him. Let us now bow our heads for a moment in his honor.

At the beginning of the trip, I was the thinnest and tannest and fittest I had ever been in my life. I do regret the bandanna here.

However...after two weeks of sloth in the sun, drinking fruity drinks and eating copious amounts of delicious ice cream and tuna sushi, I put on like 10 pounds and was relegated to posing next to Elvis' old Mercedes in a futile attempt to look smaller.

So this time, in 2011, I am definitely not 21 years old, but that don't bother me none, nope, no way. I'm gonna wear shorts with my shirt. I'm gonna try to find Troy II. I'm gonna have fruity drinks and ice cream and tuna sushi, in moderation. I'm gonna have the huge pleasure of watching my kids have a blast. I'm gonna sit at a really damn nice pool at a really damn nice resort far from crowded Waikiki -- for nine days, not fourteen -- and soak up the sun gratefully. I'm gonna call my mother and thank her again for giving us the 100K Delta air miles so we could do this, and wish that she were there with us.

I'm going to try to hang some artwork upside-down, but I bet you anything MissEight won't stand for it.

The Kinks, "Holiday In Waikiki"

I won a competition in a little column in my local paper.
So I packed my bags and flew across the sea all on my local paper.
I sailed to Hawaii in the U.S.A.
I'm just an English boy who won a holiday in Waikiki.

I didn't realize it was commercialized when I unpacked my cases,
Because a genuine Hawaii ukulele cost me 30 guineas,
And even when I'm swimming I have to pay.
I'm just an English boy who won a holiday in Waikiki.
Oh yeah, yeah.

Across the coral sands I saw a hula hula dancer, looking pretty.
I asked her where she came from and she said to me,
"I come from New York City,
And my mother is Italian,
And my dad's a Greek."
I'm just an English boy who won a holiday in Waikiki.

It's a hooka hooka on the shiny briny on the way to Kona
And in a little shack they had a little sign that said Coca Cola,
And even all the grass skirts were PVC.
I'm just an English boy who won a holiday in Waikiki.
Oh yeah, yeah.

In Waikiki
In Waikiki