Must … Hold … On

‘Tis the season for shiny graduation balloons, which makes the Hawaiian Electric Co. feel skittish. That’s because the Mylar balloons conduct electricity, so if they float up into a power line, zap—power outages.

photo: Kristin Gonzales

Last year, fugitive balloons caused 22 power interruptions in Hawai’i, more than twice the previous year. To avoid blacking out your whole neighborhood, never release balloons and, when you’re done with them, cut them by the knot to release the air, then throw them out. (Many retailers now sell this type of balloon with a small counter-weight, so leave it on.)

If a balloon does tangle in a power line, don’t try to remove it. Call HECO for help; 548-7961. Tossing the tassled mortarboard hat is, as far as we know, still safe.


Sick of your day job? Maybe it’s time you struck out on your own. You don’t even have to come up with a hot new product, because at any given moment, a surprising variety of businesses are up for sale in Hawai’i. Consider these recent listings, which we found on the Web site of Richard Daggett Realty. Of course, running a business has been described as working 80 hours a week so you don’t have to work 40 hours a week for someone else—but just think of the wacky staff meetings you can have at some of these places!

-A. Kam Napier

Candle Factory: Includes inventory, great warehouse, accounts, $35,000 or offer.

Executive fleet taxi business: 23 cars, huge net income, $560,000. Take over now, owner will train, auto mechanic is ideal buyer.

Famous Grandfather clock store: Includes merchandise inventory, owner will train, asking $250,000 … long-experienced professional clock expert will stay on.

Strip club: Queen Street, 5-year lease, great opportunity to own a successful strip club, near downtown, very busy, lucrative business, $419,000.

Liquor store: With adult magazines, 28 years in business, owner wants to retire, excellent income, Kaimuki, asking $80,000. Inventory optional.

Cozy, little restaurant in Waikiki: No open-flame cooking, but perfect for health or fast food, salad, sandwich, etc. Asking only $65,000 with $15,000 down, hurry!