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2008 Sour Poi Awards

Celebrating the best of the worst of 2008—the strange, the stupid and the scandalous.


(page 1 of 5)

Illustration: Matt Mignanelli

Complimentary blanket, sir?

Air traffic controllers spent a tense 18 minutes in February, when a Go! interisland flight carrying 40 passengers and bound for Hilo stopped responding. By the time controllers managed to get hold of the pilots, the plane had overshot Hilo Airport by 15 miles, and had to circle back to land. A National Transportation Safety Board investigation later concluded that the two pilots “unintentionally fell asleep.”


In a May City Council committee meeting, Councilman Rod Tam used the word “wetbacks” to describe undocumented laborers. He later apologized, claiming ignorance of the term’s derogatory nature. “I have always naively thought it was just a slang term used to describe illegal workers.”

Kalua pig, pupu size

Windward Oahu residents were jittery this past year over reports of coqui frogs turning up in Kailua. In Nuuanu, though, there was an invasive species outbreak of a much cuter kind: feral guinea pigs, running rampant in the residential neigborhood mauka of Puiwa Road. State agricultural officials captured more than 45 of the little creatures before declaring the problem solved.

Photo: iStock



Let he who is without sin cast the first one

Three Kaneohe men were fined after attempting to take 934 river rocks from Maui back to Oahu on the Superferry. The men were collecting the rocks on behalf of their church, whose bishop had suggested that the Superferry’s $5 fares were a great opportunity to replace the stones used in the church’s imu.

Quit your wining

In April, a woman hit her husband on the left side of his head with a wine bottle. Not wanting to report her to the police, the long-suffering husband went to the hospital and got treatment, saying that he had slipped and fallen on some broken glass. When he got home, though, the couple’s argument flared up again and the wife hit him again with the wine bottle, this time on the right side of his head. This time, the man called the police.

Photo: iStock


Wasn’t there something about a burning bush? Wait, that was Moses

Seen on the neck of former fireman Kenton Leong, who was convicted on three counts of arson for setting brush fires at Makapuu: a tattoo reading “What Would Jesus Do.”


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Honolulu Magazine April 2018
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