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What’s For Lunch?

I was hungry.  It was one o’clock, an hour past lunch time.  I was at a stopping point — finally — in my one-crisis-after-another day, and I decided to grab my wallet and go for food.

On the way down in the elevator, I was trying to decide where to lunch.  Subway?  Church’s Chicken? Pizza Hut? Or maybe I’d just grab a hot dog from the ABC Convenience Store.  I only had a couple of hours yet to work and I could go home.

I made it to curbside and was still undecided.  To my immediate right was the ABC.  Across the street and downstairs was the Waikiki Shopping Plaza Food Court.  Because it is in the basement, we call it the dungeon.  It is pretty much a typical Mall food court; lots of bad food choices surrounding rickety aluminum chairs with matching tables.

I decided on a meatball sandwich from Subway, and stepped off the curb.  A police car lurched around the corner and screached to a halt a few yards from me.  No siren.  No lights.  But the doors flew open and two cops boiled out.  They charged across the street and disappeared down the stairs to the food court.  They ran with their hands poised just over their guns.

You know, that ABC Store heat lamp hot dog I had for lunch was a bit dry and shriveled, but it came without threat of lead poisoning.


Thom, a Hawaii public transit driver, consented to be interviewed by me.


Read his questions and answers here.


  1. Yiiiikes! I’m glad you weren’t in the dungeon.
    Loved your comment tonight, I won’t build the pantry…although I’d love it. I’ll have to scale the concept down a bit, I’m excited to finally have an idea 😉

  2. ABC stores here in Honolulu may or may not contribute to lead poisoning – luck of the draw (sorry) there. But they will certainly cure you of any symptoms of gold poisoning you may have. Dry and shriveled products notwithstanding.

    I’m not allergic to cats, Gattina. The lease is.

  3. Good choice! But here lies the difference ‘tween us! I’da been followin’ the cops! I’m nosey like that! (I think Krysti’s gotten to me!)

  4. My mother-in-law was walking into a Cici’s Pizza one time with my nephew. They got to the door and heard, “PUT YOUR HANDS IN THE AIR!” several times. She wasn’t exactly sure what was going on, and looked at my nephew. He slowly slid his hands up, so she decided she’d better do the same. But that’s where it ended. They didn’t put her or my nephew in cuffs, or shove them to the ground. They wanted the guy who was walking out the door as they were walking in. But the manager saw what happened and she ate free that night.

  5. Bill — there’s always the threat of being mugged by the teller in an ABC Store — they are HIGH priced convenience joints. Whatever the price is in your average store, one can expect to pay AT LEAST twice as much at ABC — except for the hot dog which is only a dollar.

    Gattina — as OC said in his comment, it is the lease that is allergic to animals. Besides, we aren’t home a lot and it just isn’t fair to the pet to be locked i a house alone all day, and often all weekend, too!

    Shelly — I am looking forward to photos of ypur completed project!

    Amoeba — :*

    SN — some decisions are made more easily than others.

    Melli — time past I would have followed the cops, too. In fact, I had the urge to do just that. Then I thought about getting in the way and getting a cop or an innocent bystander (like me) hurt, and chose differently — though not necessarily more safely. Those ABC Stores are treacherous places!

    Lisa — I was greeted to “Put your hands in the air” just once, and I did so instantly. However, it wasn’t me they wanted, either. It was the guy in front of me. When I stopped a cop grabbed my arm, drug me into the alley, shoved me toward a dumpster and told me to get behind it and stay there until they came back — which I did. I was in my 20’s and the guy they arrested was wanted for skipping bond on a civil matter — no shouting or shooting.

    Juliana — I guess I’m just lucky that way. :p

  6. That would make me want to start bringing my lunch. It also made me think of when I worked at a medical school years ago during some racial stormy times. There had been some rioting and the National Guard had been called in to protect the area. When I went out of the hospital to go to the student center for lunch I had to be escorted by a young guy in battle uniform carrying a rifle. Creepy.

  7. It might be time to work from home. There’s lots of drama one can watch from the safety of TV. Good thing you were late; any earlier and you might have been there for the fracas in the food court.

  8. That was an exciting lunch hour.
    My mother many years ago was visiting a friend in chicago they were going down the steps of a building and mother began a conversation with a man and suddenly the police came and took him away.

  9. I once was very very ill with food poisoning, hospitalized for a week in isolation. It was very terrible. However, even that would surely be better than a dose of Lead Poisoning, lol. Isn’t it amazing how our plans suddenly change without any notice at all.

  10. Jill — I usually DO take my lunch!

    Ian — the time wasn’t. The food was.

    Capsun — I thought I left that kind of drama behind when I left Vegas!

    Dr. John — tsk! tsk! tsk! How can you go down a set of stairs from bright sunlight to dark basement and know what is or isn’t a safe distance? I was certain that my desk, across the street and up 8 floors, was a safe distance!

    Betty — WHAT!? Your momma didn’t know not to talk to strangers! See what happens?

    Alice — yes, that particular kind of lead poisoning tends to be very fast working and often fatal!

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