Entries from September 2006

September 30, 2006

Hello, My Name is Humuhumu

Filed under: Tiki — Humuhumu @ 10:56 am
No relation to the fish.
No relation to the fish.

My name understandably gives folks a little trouble sometimes. Since I’ll be meeting so many new folks at Hukilau, here’s a wee attempt to answer a few questions:

  1. Humma humma? Hooma hooma? How do you pronounce it?
    Hu-mu-hu-mu, with the “u”s pronounced as in “ruby.” It rhymes with “voodoo.” If you can say voodoo (and what self-respecting tikiphile can’t?), you can say Humu, and if you can say Humu, you can say Humuhumu.
  2. You’re named after the fish, right?
    Sorry, I ain’t. No relation. I know it’s disappointing, because how often do you get a chance to drop the fish’s full name in conversation? But that’s not where my name comes from. Humuhumu is the Hawaiian word for sewing. My first home tiki bar was also my sewing room, so I named it The Humuhumu Room. When I signed up on Tiki Central, I chose Humuhumu as my name, and it has stuck rather nicely.
  3. But what’s your real name?
    It’s Michelle.
  4. Oh, I’ll just call you Michelle, then.
  5. What do people call you?
    All sorts of things, but mostly Humu or Humuhumu. My boyfriend Hanford calls me Humu. He doesn’t call me Michelle. My dad calls me Lelle, my mom calls me her little pumpkin, my old schoolchums call me Mush or Elf, my brother calls me any of a number of bizarre things, and a few people call me Michelle. Definitely, when I’m at a tiki shindig, I prefer to be called Humuhumu.
  6. It’s kind of ridiculous.
    I agree completely.

So, there you have it! If we meet and you still stumble over my name, I won’t mind one bit. And if you really can’t hack saying “Humuhumu” or even just “Humu,” I’ll understand that, too. But now you’re equipped with much more than you ever really wanted to know about my silly little name.

September 28, 2006

Arkiva Tropika: Vintage Ephemera Mother Lode

Filed under: Art,History,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 8:41 pm
Mimi Payne's Arkiva Tropika
Mimi Payne’s Arkiva Tropika

I’m very excited about my lastest website project — Mimi Payne hired me to create a website to showcase her extensive and beautiful collection of vintage ephemera and collectibles, mostly from Polynesian and other Exotic restaurants and hotels. The result launched today, and it is called Arkiva Tropika.

Mimi’s collection is massive — not even she quite knows exactly what she has at this point, which was one reason she wanted it catalogued. Another is that it makes a great resource for her to sit and look through her collection, without having to take the sometimes-delicate items in and out of their proper storage. Paper ephemera is notoriously difficult to display; I think this is a great solution. Tags allow her to find all of her hotel postcards from California quickly, or even all of her hotel postcards except those that are from California. But the best part, I think, is that she’s also chosen to share her collection with the world, with relatively large, high-quality images. She has just a small bit of her collection in Arkiva Tropika right now (but there are already more than 175 images of nearly 100 items); she’ll continue to add items on a very regular basis.

The phrase “eye candy” seems woefully insufficient — to me, looking through her collection is like stepping into Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory. I’m incredibly proud and honored that Mimi asked me to create Arkiva Tropika for her, and I look forward to much time spent in a dreamlike-state, looking over her collection.

Detail of 1955 brochure from Hawaiian Village in Waikiki, from Arkiva Tropika
Detail of 1955 brochure from Hawaiian Village in Waikiki, from Arkiva Tropika

Last Remnants of Don the Beachcomber in Waikiki Sent to Dumpster

Filed under: Hawaii,History,Las Vegas,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 3:29 pm
Last remnants of Don the Beachcomber at Waikiki's International Marketplace
Last remnants of Don the Beachcomber
at Waikiki’s International Market Place,
photo from Fil Slash

A tragic and shocking development in Waikiki: these two moai posts, which are the last reminders of Don the Beachcomber’s glorious presence at the International Market Place in Waikiki, have reportedly been sent to the dump.

These moai used to stand sentry at the Dagger Lounge and Bora Bora Bar part of Don the Beachcomber. The original Don the Beachcomber location in Hollywood kicked off the entire Polynesian Pop trend; he led the charge once again after he moved to Hawaii, and created the International Market Place with his Don the Beachcomber restaurant as the centerpiece. The International Market Place also held a Trader Vic’s, and became a major tourist hub in Waikiki.

This space is being renovated to accomodate a new Quicksilver store, and local tikiphiles have been keeping a close eye on the renovations. Despite assurances that there were no plans to remove the structural moai posts, they are now missing. Remarkably, the construction crew reportedly tossed them in to a dumpster that was taken to the dump.

It’s a terrible shame that a lovely piece of the International Market Place’s history has been treated so shabbily, and that the location of these tikis is now complately unknown. It seems hard to believe that anyone would actually throw them away; perhaps they went home with a member of the construction crew. There have been rumblings about Don the Beachcomber re-opening in Las Vegas; I’m not sure how that’s coming along, but surely that would have been a better home for these historic tikis than the dump.

UPDATE: Holden Westland, owner of Tiki Farm, passes along this news via Tiki Central:

I am happy to let you all know that I received a phone call with the whereabouts of these 2 special Moai and they are safe and will soon be revitalized in a place very befitting of their dignity not too far from their original location.

Verrrrry mysterious… but it sure sounds a lot better than the dump.

San Clemente: Tiki Farm’s Mugoomba Grand Opening Party

Filed under: Events,Los Angeles,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 2:47 pm
Mugoomba, Tiki Farm's new in-warehouse tiki bar
Mugoomba, Tiki Farm’s new in-warehouse tiki bar

Tiki Farm is throwing a party to celebrate the Grand Opening of their new tiki bar, dubbed Mugoomba. Mugoomba was “built to the standards of vintage tiki bars,” thanks to Bamboo Ben. The bar itself is a vintage 1930s rattan beauty, with three functional aquariums. This new tiki bar is inside the Tiki Farm warehouse in San Clemente, about an hour south of Los Angeles.

The party is happening on Sunday, October 15, from 4-9pm, and will feature hula dancers from the Tropical Paradise Dancers halau, and Lil’ Rev on ukulele. There will be Mai Tais (of course!), Hawaiian shave ice, and a full plate-lunch buffet. The first 100 guests will receive a special tiki mug commemorating the event, filled with a Mai Tai (or water, if that’s more to your taste) poured by Tiki Farm owner Holden Westland.

Tiki Farm is at 1305 Calle Avanzando in San Clemente, at the end of a culdesac. Click here to view the full invitation, including directions.

September 27, 2006

Hukilau Seeking Volunteers

Filed under: Events,Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 8:49 am

Visions of Mystery Girls dancing in your head? Me too. With Hukilau fast approaching, the volunteers are gearing up to make this event happen. Most of the volunteer spots have been filled, but there are a few smaller holes in the schedule that need filling. Volunteering at Hukilau is fun, easy, and it’s a great way to meet folks (and possibly get a first-look at all the merchandise in the vending area!). Volunteers will receive some limited edition schwag, and deeply discounted Aloha Passes. If you’d like to participate, send an email to Jason & Staci Smith (your very friendly volunteer coordinators) at volunteer@thehukilau.com.

September 26, 2006

Alameda: Bad Liver Mug Sale

Filed under: Events,San Francisco,Shopping,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 6:35 pm
The Bad Liver mug, by Munktiki
The Bad Liver mug, by Munktiki

On Sunday, October 1, at 3pm, a limited edition version of Munktiki’s new Bad Liver mug will go on sale at Forbidden Island. This unusual mug, designed by Stuckie, is shaped like a rotten liver. Some of the Bad Liver mugs will be sold on eBay, but this special batch of Forbidden Island Bad Liver mugs have an elaborate multi-color glaze, and won’t be available anywhere else. (The mug pictured does not have the exclusive Forbidden Island glaze.) Each Bad Liver mug sold at Forbidden Island on October 1 will come with a coupon good for one Bad Liver cocktail, an award-winning drink by Forbidden Island co-owner Martin Cate. Only 25 of these mugs will be available, at $60 each. There will be a strict one-per-person limit, and the sales will be in-person only, on a first-come, first-served basis.

Mmmm. Bile.

Picasso’s Collection of African & Oceanic Art

Filed under: Art,History,People,Shopping,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 11:12 am
Picasso with his Marquesan tiki
Picasso with his Marquesan tiki

At the end of October, Prestel Publishing is releasing a detailed book by Peter Stepan about Picasso’s love affair with African and Oceanic art. Here he is on the cover of the book, with a Marquesan tiki he was particularly fond of (can’t blame him!). The tikis and other items from his collection now reside in museums and also in the private collections of his family members, and many of them have been photographed and described in detail for this book. The list price for the book will be $85, but Amazon is offering pre-orders for $53.55. Tip of the hat to Aaron’s Akua for the heads-up. You can learn more about Picasso’s Marquesan tiki on this thread at Tiki Central.

Las Vegas: Mondo Lounge Atomic Frolic

Filed under: Events,Las Vegas,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 10:38 am
Mondo Lounge Atomic Frolic
Mondo Lounge Atomic Frolic

The Mondo Lounge Atomic Frolic is coming to Las Vegas, January 26-28, 2007. From the website:

Mondo Lounge is the Ultimate Retro Party and Conference. The event is themed around the lifestyle and culture of America from 1957 to 1963 & will bring together fans of Retro Fashion, Tiki, Exotica Music, Car Culture, Bachelor Pad Living, Pin-Ups, Swing Scene, Vintage Las Vegas Rat Pack era.

The event will be taking place at the Aruba Hotel, which lies between the Strip and historic downtown Las Vegas. Since it takes place in wintertime, it’s the perfect time to bust out your snappiest vintage glamour getups.

The event is presented by Lotta Living and Java’s Bachelor Pad. If you’re interested in being a vendor, performer, speaker or sponsor at the Mondo Lounge Atomic Frolic, check out the website for more information, and to contact the organizers.

September 25, 2006

Hukilau: When In Rum, Do as the Rummies Do

Filed under: Events,Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 9:07 pm
What Friday night might look like
What Friday night might look like

Hukilau is fast approaching, and I’m already mentally packing my bags (much easier, now that the War Against Shampoo has been reduced to a Firm Grudge Against Shampoo). I’m planning on bringing a webcam to some of the late-nite room parties, assuming I can get Internet access. I’ve set up a chat room on Userplane that supports streaming webcams, feel free to dive in and join me! If you have your own webcam that you’re bringing to Hukilau, you can use my Userplane chat room to stream it to the folks back home, too. Here’s how to use it:

- Go to this link: Humu Kon Tiki Webcam

- You’ll need to log in, but you don’t need to create an account if you don’t want to; you can log in as a guest.

- Once you’re logged in, Click “Chat!” to launch the chat window.

- You’ll see a list of users in the room in a list on the left side, under “The Molokai Bar.” If my webcam is currently broadcasting, you’ll see “Humuhumu” in the list; click my name, and you’ll get my webcam video in the lower left corner. There’s a “+” button you can click to enlarge the video window.

You can log in now, if you’d like, but there won’t be anything to see until I start broadcasting. When I find myself ready to start broadcasting, I’ll send up a flare at Tiki Central in this thread (and in Tiki Central’s Shout! chat window, too).

Oh, we’re going… to a Hukilau…

Tiki Scores and Nacho Bars at Forbidden Island

Filed under: Art,Events,My Travels,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 3:36 pm
Tiki bar by Nacho
Tiki bar by Nacho

Yesterday was Forbidden Island’s parking lot sale, and boy howdy was it crazy — in a good way. I spent the day working the booth of leftovers from the Forbidden Island build-out (all the FI employees were very busy doing what they do best — taking care of scores of guests). The weather couldn’t have been better (unusual, for Alameda), and I hear that there were about a hundred people lined up around the block to get in when the sale opened at 3pm. Everyone seemed to be having a very good day indeed — from the folks who snagged great tikis, art and vintage clothing, to the vendors who across the board seemed to be having a banner day.

Towering over the proceedings was this tiki bar, created by Nacho. Nacho had a similar massive Moai bar that he brought to Viva Las Vegas three years in a row until it was sold. He created this massive Ku bar to bring to Viva Las Vegas this past year, and it got use again yesterday, when Forbidden Island bartender Jim worked behind it making Mai Tais for the crowd. Pictures really don’t do it justice, it’s hard to get a sense of the scale of the thing — it’s about 18 feet tall, eight feet wide, and 10 feet deep. The inside is nicely decked out, too, thanks to Nacho’s friend Kahaka (the fellow who does those great lamps). There’s a thread on Tiki Central detailing the progress of the construction of this beauteous beast.

I was behind the booth all day, so I didn’t have an opportunity to chat much with folks (though I did a lot of waving and smiling). Hanford was free to roam, and he bought a snazzy lamp and an end table that perfectly matches my half-pretzel rattan living room set. I’ve put my pictures up on Humuhumu’s Life in Photos, and there are more from other folks in a thread on Tiki Central. It went so well, I’m betting there will be more sales like this one at Forbidden Island in the future.

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About Humuhumu
Humuhumu is the creator of several tiki websites. She is a designer and programmer based out of San Francisco.

- Website Design and Programming

- A Worldwide Guide to Tiki Bars & Polynesian Restaurants

- Tiki Mugs & More: Track & View Collections




Arkiva Tropika
Mimi Payne’s massive Polynesian Pop collection

Barefoot Bloggin’
A surfin’, ukein’, freewheelin’ monkey boy

Beachbum Berry
Author of Grog Log and Intoxica!, and one of my dearest drinkin’ buddies

Blog from the user interface designer extraordinaire

Worldwide Guide to Tiki Bars & Polynesian Restaurants

Dumb Angel
A look at the 1960s Los Angeles mod, pop, surf, and music scene

Eye of the Goof
Pop culture with a tiki tinge

Forbidden Island
My Wednesday hangout, the Bay Area’s best tiki bar

Humuhumu’s Life in Photos
Pictures of my adventures

I build websites

Junkyard Clubhouse
Random interesting things from Humuhumu & Hanford Lemoore

Kevin Kidney
Kevin loves tiki, I love Kevin, you will too

Tiki links galore

Mai Tai Online
Montreal-based tiki ‘zine

Tiki Mug Collection Organizer

The Jab
Follow the way of the jab

Tiki Bar TV
Public Access meets Modern Drunkard

Tiki Central
Community forums

Tiki Magazine
Periodical publication covering the wide world of Tiki

Tiki Talk
Hot Lava’s Tiki Blog