Driving Through December
We can all admit it: driving on Oahu is becoming more and more frustrating.
Every time I find myself on Ward avenue I’m like “WHY did I take Ward Avenue?” and even what could be considered off hours for traffic like weekends or middle of the day can find you in your car with white knuckles trying to figure out a way to tell who you are meeting you will be late without using your hands to pick up your cell phone.
Now that it’s the holidays there’s even more people, and it’s the people that may not usually like to go out and drive to those additional functions or do some extra shopping. Plus we have even more people home for the season to mingle with the visitors looking for a warm holiday get-away. This year we are really seeing the predicament so many people and so many cars on such a small surface area really can be.
Driving? Is a pain.
During this time I like to think about another kind of drive; the drive that brings joy. Toy drives!
Two came up on my radar this year that are directly connected to the Honolulu Nightlife. The first being Carl Richards, trombone player for the band Smokestack who has been doing grass roots drives and feeding the less fortunate for many years.
This year his “Our Hands to Theirs” organization connected with a Veteran’s organization that will need what just about all of us could do without: toiletries. I know personally I had to clean out all of my bathroom and hall closet after I got sick to reduce my chemical intake while I had a super fragile immune system.
In addition to new toys, Richards is collecting clothing for all ages, blankets, and sundries/toiletries. Anyone who wants to start a drive in their office this week can take the donations at one time to the Institute for Human Services all the way up until December 24th at 546 Kaaahi St, Honolulu, HI 96817. A community event is planned at the center for Christmas eve beginning at 12pm with live entertainment and a holiday meal. Volunteers are needed, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tonight if you just want to bring a toy to Chinatown and celebrate the holidays and many people back home for Christmas there is a drive at Manifest, Nextdoor and Bar35. Bring a new toy and get a raffle ticket. Every toy gets a ticket and you can also purchase additional tickets for great prizes. Come decked out in the Christmas Spirit for another free raffle ticket.
Presented by Defend Hawaii and BeckerBecker, the event is featuring an all-star lineup of local DJs donating their time so that all proceeds from the night can be donated to the Hawaii Children’s Cancer Foundation. Music by Debin, Tittahbyte, Compose, Anit, Yozilla, Godiva and Songbird, with many more being added.
BeckerBecker is the one responsible for the 12 Bars of Christmas crawl in years past with the Chinatown Merchants Association and even though he has a lot on his plate with a new job and family obligations he still managed to get a few bars involved and an event pulled together in three days.
“In this busy life, my mother always pushed me to help others. I want to make it easy for everyone to help others so I do this drive every year for that purpose and of course to see the smile on those kids faces, it changes things." Becker told me in an email.
There’s quite a bit of busy-ness happening in this generation but even more now during the last few weeks of the “holidays” it’s very important to appreciate the now. Look around, see where we are. Look at your family, tell them you love them. Help those less fortunate, bring joy to another person.
That’s what is so great about giving anyway.
SILENT NIGHT NOT TONIGHT
Presented by DEFEND HAWAII and BeckerBecker
Manifest, Nextdoor, Bar35 35 N Hotel St. Chinatown
Wednesday December 16th 2015 10pm-2am
Donations accepted, bring a new toy for raffle tickets, dress in Christmas spirit