treatment of ed

Hawaiian Hours

 It’s not just because I have Hawaiian blood coursing through my veins, or even that I live in Southern California (which I do), but the new “workplace” and flexible work time concept suits me just fine. Additionally, the no suit required, suits me just fine too!  The laid back lifestyle of Hawaiians or even Californians does not mean we are not productive or slackers, but actually it means that we maximize our production time to enjoy both work and play with relatively little stress. This is not a terrible or even lackadaisical attitude, but one of balance, structure and ultimately success.

We have all probably worked sixty-hour weeks at the office and neglected ourselves or loved ones in the process.  Doing the daily grind and chasing the almighty buck. Of course this used to be the only way to get ahead in life, but it would often lead to burn out for many, including myself.  The popularity of flexible schedules and the rapid growth of technology to support this schedule, make the “office” look a lot different than it used to, thank goodness!

Virtual Office Space has been very attractive to me for its unique offering in the Corporate Real Estate Market. Not only does this model directly address the need for office space in specific “hot spot” locations, but addresses the unique and varied needs of so many Entrepreneurs. The virtual office or dedicated office to use on an ‘as needed’ basis simply makes sense, for expansion, satellite offices, and meetings, all accessible with the client avoiding the often exorbitant costs and liabilities incurred with an office front or traditional leased (rented) space. Let’s not even mention the equipment, utilities, security, cleaning, etc.  Temporary use or consistent monthly occupancy, at whatever hours, it is the ultimate in flexibility. That is where the concept of ROC (Real Office Centers) began for me. Being from a successful background in Commercial Real Estate and Management I think groomed me to conceptualize the ideal environment and jump back into the business.

The concept of course is not new, but it was really important to me to blend some other unique and critical elements into Corporate Offices, to not offer just plain office space. Putting the right people in the right place is key; even in my personal business experience it has been critical. By adding networking opportunities and key note speakers, seminars and angel investing events, we are able to bring opportunities directly to our tenants.  Their success is an integral part of our identity, as we at ROC create and support their best image possible.

If we have to go to the office (which is often the only way many can focus and be efficient), it’s got to be nani (enjoyable) right, braddah?  All of the corporate office centers are unique to their location (all in Southern California) but we have paid special attention to the overall vibe and atmosphere of each. All of our locations have abundant natural lighting, ample open space, even dedicated collaboration space, and there has to be perks, right? We have; Massage Chair Tuesdays, Tenant Breakfasts, Raffles, Evening Mixers, car wash services and a host of different special events every month.

The Green concept is not new to my Hawaiian heritage.  Growing up I was taught that the earth is our responsibility so there was no difficulty in incorporating this philosophy into our buildings. We have energy star compliant equipment, recycling programs, water and energy saving technology, alternate transportation options and of course avidly support local businesses to each location.

All of these visions of the new workplace have become reality for me and the invaluable crew at ROC (Real Office Centers) only enhances what we have to offer. Working together is like tending a garden, love, time, location and sunlight are all important for growth. Seeds are planted; ideas traded, and out of collaboration and networking, something bigger grows. In life I have learned where there is passion, there is purpose.  It is my passion to blend that kick back attitude with the kick butt attitude of our tenants and staff.

Radio Interview with Kathleen Milliken, Project Empowerment Show

Listen to my interview with Kathleen Milliken on the Project Empowerment radio show:

Listen to internet radio with KathleenMMilliken on Blog Talk Radio

Interview: Overcoming Obstacles

Listen to internet radio with The Cocoa Express on Blog Talk Radio

Video: How to Write a Memoir

Wrong Side of the Tracks: How to Write a Memoir

Author Ron McElroy discusses how he wrote Wrong Side of the Tracks, his recently published memoir. McElroy reports having spent a lengthy amount of time without any sense of focus or purpose for the book, producing hundreds of pages that were ultimately discarded. Then, he says, he began to seek feedback and worked with professional developmental editors to produce a highly polished story with great meaning and inspiration to a broad popular audience. He says the secret to creating a great memoir is writing about universal problems, obstacles to overcome, relationships, successes and failures in professional and family life, the real stuff of life that everyone can identify with and be inspired by.

For more videos about Ron’s personal journey to overcome trauma, discrimination, protect indigenous Hawaiian people and their native land, visit YouTube or www.wrongsideofthetracksbook.com

To order the book Wrong Side of the Tracks, through this website or by visiting Amazon.

Interview on Blog Talk Radio

Listen to my interview with Dr. Karen Kan on Blog Talk Radio!

Whatever Happened to My Beautiful Sister Susan

Sister Susan

My sister Susan, nineteen years old in 1978, just before leaving for the cult.

People who’ve read my memoir Wrong Side of the Tracks know that my sister left home when she was about 20 years old to

join what we realized gradually was a cult. So I’ve been asked, what happened to her, how is she, what’s the latest news about this beautiful and beloved young woman who, to her family’s dismay, took such a weird turn in her life.

Well here’s an update: Susan is still living her life out and away from what she termed so many years ago “The World”, the term was used back when she became brain-washed in the ways of the Susie and Tony Alamo Christian Foundation. This so-called Christian foundation was without a doubt a total cult. If it walks, quacks, and waddles like a duck, it must be a duck, right? What a travesty and waste of one of the sweetest personalities I had ever known growing up. Susan, dear innocent sister swept away by the forces of deceit and disgust. Dark forces parading as evangelical saviors for wayward kids lost in life’s early confusing path to maturity. Yes, thoroughly brainwashed and dedicated to carry on the forced integration of morbid social greed of its leaders. I guess Susan’s brain is incapable of pulling itself away from years of constant pounding rhetoric, Our only consoltation is that she is so thoroughly and completely drowned in her belief that her life is comfortable and without confusion… Someday maybe she’ll want to hang out with her old family….hopefully one day….

Real Office Centers in Santa Monica, California

Here is a look at our cooperative workspace: Real Office Centers (ROC) in Santa Monica, California.

ROC Santa Monica Events from Brett McElroy on Vimeo.

Go See George Clooney’s The Descendants and Why We Need to Preserve Hawaii

Kalapapa Kapu

Hope everyone knows by now that my memoir Wrong Side of the Tracks is about a Hawaiian kid (me) who survives poverty and discrimination to fulfill the real American dream. Now I want to give back and help my family and other indigenous Hawaiians get jobs and control over their part of the islands. I love to write but appreciate that good movies can also be really powerful and even help change the world.

That’s why I want to recommend a movie: The Descendants with George Clooney. It came out a while back and was a big hit, so now you can get it on Netflicks or however you like to do that. It’s one of the first movies on Hawaii that grapples with that question of exploitation versus preservation. Even though it wasn’t from a native Hawaiian perspective it still demonstrates the meaning of what it’s like to hold on to something dear and genuine. While not always the popular decision, taking a stand in front of ridicule and outright threats from family and friends is sometimes very hard to maintain even with the most ardent conviction. My family and friends on Molokai’s effort to preserve their Island as just that…something you can’t get back once you let it go, and their efforts are nothing short of heroic.

I’ve met with officials in the local government throughout the islands recently, some who get it and some who clearly have no clue as to why it’s so important to preserve this national treasure. My hope is that the voices are many and loud enough to make the ones who don’t get it to finally understand.  You can never get it back once it’s gone!

Molokai, fined for surfing at home.

Molokai Surf

Molokai: My son Brett

Molokai: Dicky boi!

Molokai: Secred Grave Site

Molokai: Unridden Gifts

 

Dear folks,

Here’s a kind of free-association creative caption my son Brett wrote to go with the photographs he took when he and his cousin Dicky snuck into one of the greatest places in Molokai to surf. They had to climb down highest and steepest vertical incline in the world in the middle of the night with their surf boards strapped to their backs so the federal officers wouldn’t see them. Can you believe it? Your tax dollars at work.

Nothing could keep them from this super surf spot, though, and as soon as the sun came up, they had the greatest time and I wish I’d been with them.

Here’s how Brett tells it.

Dicky and I woke up at 12am at his uncle Kama’s house. made some coffee, ate some leftovers and got ready. parked the truck near all the other vehicles that belonged to the kalaupapa workers.  We saw some headlights so we put our heads down and hid out till they passed. Then we got our boards and bags and lamps and started down the trail. After about an hour an a half, we hit flat ground and turned off our lights– we had to use moonlight to make our way through town and shadows to hide in.

Must be no hunting allowed either because there are deer everywhere. Walking through a couple of small cemeteries to avoid streetlights, it was hard not to think about ghosts, since this whole area had once been a famous leprosy colony.  we get to a small cluster of pine trees along the beach and put our stuff down, exhausted but too fired up to sleep, staring up at the stars through the pine trees.  I drift off. Dicky has a hard time sleeping because he’s freezing. Kama said it would be cold down here. I wake up and we eat our army rations that Dicky brought — strangest tasting cardboard food, but good enough.

The sun is coming up and waves are starting to shape up. At first its perfectly glassy and we’re seeing spitting barrels. Its time to surf. But all of a sudden Dicky ducks down and freezes, his eyes locked on something. I look and see some dude down on the beach staring at us. Dicky walks up to him while maintaining pine tree cover. It’s all good– visitor from Oahu, wildlife researcher of some sort. Dicky assures him he didn’t see us. We hide our stuff under some branches, walk up the beach through the trees and then cross the sand—don’t need our footprints giving away our camp.

Finally, we start paddling and the real mission begins– we are clearly here and surfing– 2 strange laws being broken, but as we get closer to the lineup, those thoughts fade immediately. The waves are big, fast, hollow and shallow. I go deep because that’s where the better ones seem to be. Dicky is hangin out wide. I get a few good ones and notice how quick you have to get in them. They scoop quick and almost double up. Inside paddling back out, I see a real set. luckily I’m inside, far from the impact zone. I get back out and sit a little wider to get a big one.  its nice having Dicky on a stand up paddle, he spots everything before I do.

“HO!” Dicky yells. “this one’s for you Brett!”

I start paddling out and deep and then turn around. Kind of gnarly looking, but Dicky said go, so I go, paddling as hard as a I can to get in front. I can see the reef right under me and the water sucking out. I stand up, and see I’ve only made it down the first face. I airdrop down the second, but eat it hard. Pushed off the bottom and came up a much cleaner person.

Dicky gets a good one. When we’re both paddling back out, he says to me,” Good,  now you got those butterflies out”  He was right, I felt more comfortable after that. went for another big one, same thing– scooped up faster then I could paddle, made the airdrop, but got axed trying to bottom turn with too little speed.

Damn! never been so clean!  Then a massive wall comes in. I see Dicky paddling his ass off. He’s half way up the face and it starts breaking. He bails, but some how everything made it over. The next one is bigger and starting to break farther out. Dicky is paddling faster, a little to late, he bails. I come up and see him swimming. His leash must have busted, so I turn around to go find his board. I paddle back out on his and he says he’s just gonna hang out on the shoulder to watch me. The tide is going out and the swell is building.  Here comes a set, this one looks more makeable.  I paddle as hard as I can, make the drop and bottom turn right into the tube and ride till it pinches, get thrown around and feel my leash snap. That declared the end of our session. probably good timing because watching it from the beach, it just got bigger and bigger. Walking back, Dicky was pretty casual. Sneaking through town in the middle of the night made sense… but how do we get back to the trail without being seen? Dicky never answered me. We just start walking.  Some lady stops us.

“Who’s your sponsor family? You can’t surf here.”

“Its okay, aunty, we’re on our way home, goin back up, thanks aunty” Dicky says, as we keep walking. almost to the bridge and some red truck pulls up next to us, some old white guy driving “Hey, who’s your sponsor? It’s against the law to surf here!”

“Well we’re an exception to the rule,” Dickey shoots right back.

So the guy turns around and starts honking to get the park ranger’s attention.

“Run!”

We head for the shoreline which is a 30 foot ledge and hike down about 5 feet and hide out. we see the red truck and park ranger driving around looking for us. We have a good view of the wave and the harbor. After about 45 min of watching rifling barrel after barrel, we see the ranger and the harbor. its about a half mile away but it looks like they’re looking right at us. Then they get in the truck, back up and go, quickly.

“They saw us.”

We run for awhile, but Dicky is lagging because he’s lugging an SUP board. We get to an abandoned house and decide to hide there for a moment.  Seems pretty quiet… then some lady pulls up with a camera around her neck and starts walking towards the house we’re in. I’m looking out the window as she gets closer. Dicky’s in the back room lookin out that window.  I can see her shadow as she looks in and sees Dicky’s giant board in plain site.

“DAMN! Dicky they’ve found us.”  I look out again and the lady is waving someone over I cant see. Dicky grips his stuff “we go”, thinking we’re gonna make another break for the trail, but we see the ranger with one hand hovering over his tazer and the other over his gun.

“Aww Dicky c’mon!!”, he shouts at us. “I thought we’ve been through this already.!”

He knew Dicky from many times before and must have sensed we still might make a run for it.

“Just drop your stuff and sit down,” he said. “I have to cite you because the whole town saw and the pissed off dude in the red truck was the state administrator, the one who signs my paycheck.

Dicky took it like a man, even though he was well aware the whole situation is backwards. Meanwhile, I was mad. Who is violating who? A haole guy threatening to forever ban Dicky, a Hawaiian born and raised in Molokai, indigenous Hawaiian, from stepping foot here, from practicing his cultural right to surf.  But Dicky is too in love with that wave for any of this to stop him.

“Anyone else come down here to surf?” he asks the Ranger  “No Dicky,” he says writing out the required citation, “you the only one who come down here.”

Dicky smiled. On the way up, looking down at the peninsula, I told him we should go around the town coming back next time so no one would spot us like they did.

“Deya go!” he said.

Apart from the 3 miles straight up the cliff, the walk back was pretty casual and relaxed now that we were no longer on the run.  At the top, our bodies and our minds were done.  Some kind of natural opiates were pumping through our veins and our brains. drove back down to Dicky’s on the water with stony perma-grins on our face. We built a fire right on the beach and sat like zombies, drinking some victory beers.
 

Los Angeles Book Examiner Features Author Ron McElroy

Los Angeles Book Examiner, Frank Mundo, is now featuring the first chapter of Wrong Side of the Tracks over on Examiner.com. Check out the Examiner article here.

Kalua Pig Ho’olehua Style – A Film About Molokai By My Son Brett

Here’s some news I’m proud of. My son Brett is currently documenting the old school ways of Molokai. He’s making a film about the life that Molokai locals value above all else….above money, above power, above acclaim, above self. This isn’t about any one individual, but the whole way of life. In this fast paced churn and burn world, places like Molokai are becoming more valued and cherished for their natural mystique and beauty.

If you ever have a chance to venture past the typical tourist trip throughout the more populated areas of Hawaii and step into the real Hawaii of Molokai please come to see us. But don’t expect phony smiles, leis, and surfboards with rental signs on them. This is a deeper Hawaii, proud Hawaiians happy to greet you with mutual respect. You also won’t get away with littering in the street, talking annoyingly loud or being annoying, rude or otherwise obnoxious. No, you will get “stink eye” and more for your naive behavior….brah!

So Brett is making this documentary film. The early rushes are great, so stay tuned for how to get the final version. Here’s a preview: