We subscribe to three newspapers at our house. One, of course, is The Rafu. The other two are The L. A. Times and The Daily Breeze.

The latter covers cities in the beach areas and also includes Torrance and Gardena.

I take The Daily Breeze mostly for the sports news in the area, a lot of high school news.

In this past Sunday’s edition on the front page, the top story had the heading “88-Day Race to 88 Cities.” Didn’t appear to be a story that might interest me, so I turned the pages over one after another. On Page 9, the continuation of  “88 Cities” was printed.

I probably would have passed it over again, but the story included a photo of Paul Tanaka, the mayor of Gardena and a candidate for the sheriff’s post in the next election.

I went back to the front page to read the story. The headline was about Tanaka’s campaign for sheriff. The second paragraph read:

“The Gardena mayor and former Los Angeles County undersheriff aims to campaign in 88 cities in 88 days in hopes that he can shake enough hands, attend enough community events and embrace enough civic leaders to defeat Sheriff (Lee) Baca, an incumbent with name recognition and a mountain of cash.

“‘The idea for the 88 cities tour came out of numerous conversations we have had with Paul,’ said Kelsey Eiben, Tanaka’s campaign manager. ‘He would often say that various residents from Los Angeles County’s 88 cities want different things from their public safety officials.’

“In addition, some residents do not realize how the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department affects their city even if they have their own police department.”

“Since launching the tour on Sept. 17, Tanaka has been to 17 cities. His tour doesn’t hit a city a day for 88 straight but it includes several stops in a single day.

“‘It certainly helps that I am retired from full-time work,’ said Tanaka about squeezing in so many events in such a short window of time.

“Tanaka is quite comfortable putting his smile on full display and shaking as many hands as possible.

“‘I  believe in face-to-face meetings. I believe in handshakes,’ Tanaka said.

“Face time is as important to Tanaka’s campaign as endorsements at this point in the race.

“The local chapter of the Hispanic American Police Command Officers Association doesn’t endorse candidates, but during Tanaka’s visit, retired Sheriff’s Department Lt. Gil Carrillo stumped for the former undersheriff in front of more than 100 Latino law enforcement agents.

“This could be very valuable to Tanaka since current Sheriff Baca is Hispanic.

“Financially speaking, being the incumbent, Sheriff Baca might have a big edge in funds. In his last campaign, Baca raised $500,000.

“With the primary election still eight months away, voters won’t pay much attention to the sheriff’s race until next spring.”

One of the things that the story on Tanaka did not include was his ethnicity. If he wins the election, he will be the first Japanese American to head the second-largest municipal law enforcement agency in the U.S.

So, while the number of JA voters may not have that much effect on the outcome, financial aid for Tanaka might make the difference between winning and losing.

What Tanaka is doing is focusing on people, which will lead to money and endorsements.

Campaign financial report in the sheriff’s race won’t be out until January.

Taking down Baca means overcoming his money and name recognition.


 It’s a pretty well-known fact that in Hawaii, understanding the language can be difficult at times.

It’s not only the language but how it is presented. I know when I first went to the Islands, I often found myself saying, “What did he say?”

Well, let’s hope those of you who go to Hawaii are never introduced to a young lady whose first name is Janice.

Her last name? Try Keihanaikukauakahihuliheekahaunaele. That’s 35 letters in her name.

She has persuaded state authorities to change their official ID card format because her name will not fit.

For years, she has carried two forms of identification: her driver’s license, which only has room for 34 characters, and her state ID card, which in the past had room for all 35 letters.

Then a traffic cop pulled her over. “The policeman looked at my license and saw I had no first name. I told him it is not my fault that my license and state ID are not correct and I am trying to get it corrected,” she said. “He then told me, ‘Well, you can always change your name back to your maiden name.’

“This hurt my heart,” said Keihanaikukauakahihuliheekahaunaele, who is originally from New York and worked on Wall Street until 1991.

“Over the past 22 years, I have seen Hawaii being bulldozed and the culture of Hawaii being trampled upon, and this policeman treated my name as if it is some mumbo jumbo,” she added. Her friends call her Lokelani.

She took her case to a local TV station, which publicized the problem. Within days, authorities — who had told her it would take two years to change and the character limit would remain at 35 — decided they could make room for 40-character names by the end of 2013.


When it comes to Vegas, the word most visitors use is “gaming.” Well, according to the latest report, this may all change.

A poll conducted this year by the national gambling lobby found that 26 percent of casino-goers now skip wagering and the city’s growing mega-clubs are threatening to become the most lucrative draw for a town built on betting.

“It’s an arms race,” said Flutter Fetti CFO John Stern.

Vegas now boasts 21 of the country’s 100 most profitable nightclubs, according to the trade publication Nightclub & Bar. The town also dominates the top 10 spots with seven clubs bringing in more than $25 million a year. The other three clubs with earnings in that range are LIV and Mango’s Tropical Café in Miami Beach and LAVO in New York City.

As clubs become increasingly important to casino’s bottom line, programmers are competing ever more fiercely to offer partiers novelties that they would never see at their local dance spot.

Surrender has distributed 3D glasses at the door so clubbers could take in the graphics popping out from behind the DJ. At Flutter Fetti, the new thing this year is cannons that sync automatically to a DJ’s music, so that dancers are covered in metallic strips just as the track reaches its climax.

Well, after reading the above, maybe I’ll end up in a nightclub rather than the casino.

Heh, heh. Who’s kidding whom?

If I drive all the way to Vegas, I don’t think I’ll be sitting around a nightclub. I can do that in Gardena at one of the card clubs.


The following, which was passed on to me by a reader, might be some useful information for frequent travelers.

Ever wonder what is on your magnetic key card?

a. Customer’s name

b. Customer’s partial home address

c. Hotel room number

d. Check-in and check-out dates

e. Customer’s credit card number and expiration date

When you turn them in to the front desk, your personal information is there for any employee to access by simply scanning the card in the hotel scanner. An employee can take a handful of cards home, access the information onto a laptop computer and go shopping at your expense.

Simply put, hotels do not erase the information on these cards until an employee reissues the card to the next hotel guest. At that time, the new guest’s information is electronically overwritten on the card and previous guest’s information is erased in the process.

But until the card is rewritten for the next guest, it usually is kept in a drawer at the front desk with your information on it.

The bottom line is: Keep the cards, take them home with you or destroy them. Never leave them behind in the room (even in the wastebasket) and never turn them in to the front desk when you check out. They will not charge you for the card (it’s illegal) and you’ll be sure you are not leaving a lot of valuable personal information on it that could be easily lifted off with any simple card reader.

For the same reason, if you arrive at the airport and discover you still have the card key in your pocket, do not toss it in an airport trash basket. Take it home and destroy it by cutting it up, especially through the electronic information strip.

If you have a small magnet, pass it across the magnetic strip several times. It erases everything on the card.


This laugher is titled “Secrets to a long, happy marriage”:

An old woman was sipping on a glass of wine while sitting on the patio with her husband.

She says, “I love you so much, I don’t know how I could ever live without you.”

Her husband asks, “Is that you or the wine talking?”

She replies, “It’s me talking to the wine.”

George Yoshinaga writes from Gardena and may be reached at horsesmouth2000@hotmail.com. Opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of The Rafu Shimpo.

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