Stephen Spalding Email Picture

Stephen Milbank Spalding                        11/12/1955 – 8/31/2015

This blog reported earlier on Stephen’s death and provided his obituary. His family has now set a Hawaii memorial service for friends and family. You are encouraged to attend.

Continue Reading »

Did you see the recent annual giving report for Punahou?

Punahou74 40th Reunion Logo

The magic of our 40th reunion keeps on going.

Punahou74 did itself proud. Of the 82 classes represented, we were the 11th most generous and tied for 19th with regard to the percentage of classmates participating–and that’s with 16 reunion classes in the mix.

Punahou74 Class Giving – $113,820

Punahou74 Class Participation – 24%

Can’t wait to see how we do in 2019! Class pride for sure. Now you can see why I write, Continue Reading »

For those of you living outside of Hawaii, the search for Alec Cooke was called off. Both the Coast Guard and Honolulu Fire Department helicopter crews unsuccessfully searched 8,930-square ocean miles for him. A friend found Alec’s surfboard but Alec himself is now considered lost to the sea.

Alec Cooke 1983

Alec Cooke c. 1983

A memorial paddle out service–“Keep The Ocean Blue”–is planned for January 30, 2016 at Waimea Bay, the spot at which he was last seen on October 27. Final details are pending but funds for the service are currently being solicited here. I see that some classmates have already donated. I encourage your generosity if you feel so moved.

Since his loss much has been written about Alec a.k.a. “Ace Cool” and his adventuresome spirit. Most articles detail his Continue Reading »

I heard this on the radio as I was packing up to leave work tonight. I was speechless. My reaction was not unique. By the time I arrived home the news was on 73 sites around the Internet.

Alec Cooke facebook

BACK IN THE DAY OF THE BIGGEST WAVE. This picture had been posted on Alec’s facebook page.

Continue Reading »

Remembering David Parrish

While looking through my blog files I found this story that was never posted. So so sorry for the delay but I hope you will still take the time to read.

David Parrish, Punahou74 member since first grade, died on October 16, 2013. He was a retired city of Honolulu lifeguard.

David Parrish Boat

David Parrish off Waikiki and on board “Pirate,” his father’s boat c. 1976.

I first became aware of David’s passing upon seeing a facebook post from Jeff Sia. He wrote: “To Dave Parrish – For the joy, laughter, reflection, and humility you gave to me. It was my good fortune to not only know you and be a friend, but to have had an opportunity to Continue Reading »

Do you know that Punahou is celebrating the 175th anniversary of its founding this school year?

Flaming P Panorama

LOOKING OVER THE FLAMING “P” set up from the Dole Hall balcony.

If you haven’t been on campus I would forgive you this oversight. If you have been, I would have to ask, “Where have you been?”

The signs of the anniversary are everywhere. And, with this Friday marking Continue Reading »

For those of you who don’t know, I am on campus most Fridays volunteering in the Punahou archives. I have a lot of fun there and the work is interesting. It also gives me the opportunity to stay involved in the school. It’s not the intimacy that I knew as a student or a parent but I still get the vibe. 

KaPunahou 2015 Masthead Nov91973

September 2015 Edition of Ka Punahou

On some Fridays I scan the school newspaper, Ka Punahou. The periodical is a far cry from what it was in our days. First, it’s a monthly publication. Second, it conveys little information about daily campus life.

Over the years it’s devolved into musings about getting into college (“Learning to Love the Liberal Arts), politics (“Political Parties Explained”), and sports coverage that doesn’t cover sports (“Club Soccer’s Costly Focus on Fundraising”). The fact that it is primarily a community/general interest rather than a school report makes me think, “Why not read the Star-Advertiser which is so much better with broad-based coverage?” Little wonder that that Ka Punahou, which once won annual recognition as one of Hawaii’s best high school papers, has failed to win a Hawaii High School Journalism Award for years.

A Lost Perspective

KaPunahou Nov91973

THE NEWS OF THE DAY: Ka Punahou on November 9, 1973. (Click the photo for a larger view.)

For someone who regularly researches the school’s history it makes me wonder, how will my counterpart conduct this research in fifty years? Where will she find stories about the students and how they learned, played, and celebrated life?

Sadly, this information will be hard to find. Today’s stories are crafted by communications professionals writing information for the general public. In this process the student perspective is sorely lost.

I recently wrote a piece about the history of Senior Skip Day. Integral to that story was Ka Punahou‘s coverage of the incident. Do you think you would find coverage like this on Punahou’s online news feed?

Then their whole attitude changed. There was a mad dash for cars and a hurried change of clothes. Some of the boys didn’t even take time to remove their bathing suits. They put their pants on over them and took off for town. On the way in to town the boys began to contemplate what school they wanted to go to next. They even went so far as to learn the alma maters of several of the other schools. The whole bunch stopped at the Blue Bird for a hurried bite of lunch and then returned to school. (Ka Punahou. 12 Nov. 1940.)

Stopping for a bit of lunch at the Blue Bird before you meet with Principal Slade. What a laugh! Such is the value system of the ravenous teen age boy.

But maybe I am idealistic. While amusing at times, are there times when the teenage perspective is better left unsaid and unseen?

See no evil. Hear no evil. DRAW no evil.

Jeff Sia discovered that, sometimes, the adults would rather you kept your student perspective to yourself. At least that’s what then Punahou School President, Dr. Roderick “Rod” F. McPhee had to say:

McPhee KaPunahou Sia

ROD MCPHEE NOVEMBER 14, 1972 MEMORANDUM to Jeff Sia. Source: Personal collection of Jeff Sia.

“Objectionable”? “No place in a school newspaper”? What in the world was he writing about? Take a look. Continue Reading »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 302 other followers