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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted on: Saturday, September 6, 2003

Take on your next oil change

 •  Take in Sunset with romantic, political comedies
 •  Alt bands booked in Kaimuki; WCC fest goes for Hawaiian
 •  Hollywood paints the planet red, from 'Total Recall' to 'Mars Needs Women'
 •  Animal lovers' events this weekend: Dog show, bunny-care workshop
 •  Stargazers head to Kahala park
 •  Students invited to free billiards party
 •  Young actors sought for Theatrefest

Advertiser Staff and News Services

Americans say all the right things about the power of prevention but we don't always put what we know to good practice. Eating well, working out — it's not as easy as it sounds.

But what if you could maintain your health — and save time and money doing it — on just a half-hour of minimal effort every three months?

 •  Supplies

• Oil, oil filter, oil filter wrench, box or allen wrench, funnel, rags, oil change box
Whoa, calm down. If we knew that hot little secret we wouldn't be sharing it for free, now would we? But what about your car? What if there were an easy way to extend the life of your car, rid yourself of the hassle of taking it in for unnecessary servicing, and save a hundred bucks a year?

There is, and anyone who knows a dipstick from a pair of fuzzy dice knows it: Change your own oil.

In the time it takes to watch one of those infernal Sunday morning infomercials, you can perform this most basic and cost-effective car servicing procedure with minimal muss 'n' fuss.

Ryan Mimura, manager of NAPA Auto Parts in 'Ewa Beach, says he can change the oil in his car in 10 to 15 minutes, "depending on my mood." For those without the benefit of a rack (used to raise the car), the process might take a bit longer, but usually no more than a half-hour.

First, gather the supplies you'll need: oil (check your car's manual for weight and amount), oil filter, oil filter wrench, box wrench or allen wrench, funnel, rags and a disposable oil change box.

With your car parked on a level surface, run your engine for at least five minutes, until it is warm but not hot. Turn the engine off, then place the oil change box beneath the oil drain plug, a single bolt head at the bottom of the oil pan.

Next, loosen the oil drain plug with a wrench ("Make sure you don't strip the bolt," Mimura says) then remove the plug by hand.

Be sure to remove your hand quickly after the last turn to avoid getting oil on yourself. It may take old oil several minutes to drain completely. Once the oil has stopped draining, replace the cap. Be sure to turn the cap to the correct tightness, as specified in your manual.

Using your oil filter wrench, remove your oil filter, making sure the gasket is attached. Allow the oil to drain into the oil change box. Wipe the filter mounting plate then screw in the new filter. Mimura suggests lightly coating the new gasket with oil to ensure a clean, snug fit.

Next, open the hood, remove the oil cap and pour in the new oil. Make sure you do not exceed the amount specified by your manual. Run your engine for about one minute, then check the dipstick to make sure the oil is at the proper level.

If you use an oil change box designed to fully absorb used oil, all you have to do is seal the box and dispose of it with your regular trash. Oil change boxes run about $3 at most automotive supply stores.

Changing your oil every three months or 3,000 to 5,000 miles should keep your car's engine running efficiently.

Of course, as cars vary from make to make and model to model, so, too, may their specific oil change requirements. Be sure to consult your manual before starting your project.

Reach Michael Tsai at mtsai@honolulu advertiser.com or 535-2461.

Take in Sunset with romantic, political comedies

What's on the 30-foot screen at Sunset on the Beach this weekend? Glad you asked: The comedy "Head of State," starring Chris Rock, is tonight's feature; tomorrow's is the romantic comedy "America's Sweethearts," with John Cusack, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Julia Roberts.

The Sunset event begins at 4 p.m. each day with food booths and entertainment at Queen's Surf Beach. The movie begins after sunset, about 7:30 p.m. There's a craft fair 9 a.m.-9 p.m. each day. Free admission.

Alt bands booked in Kaimuki; WCC fest goes for Hawaiian

Live music, here we come. And in an unusual setting: Coffee Talk in Kaimuki, at the corner of Wai'alae and 12th avenues, hosts modern alternative bands the 86 List, TV Hairdo and teradactyl. It's happening from 8 p.m. today. Admission: $5; for all ages.

But if alt-rock isn't really your thing, and Island music really is, consider heading over to Kane'ohe, where the Windward Ho'olaule'a is in full swing 10 a.m.-10 p.m. today at Windward Community College. Besides food, crafts, and other stuff, there's entertainment, including Amy Hanaiali'i Gilliom (9 p.m.) and Kapena (9:45 p.m.). Admission is free.

Hollywood paints the planet red, from 'Total Recall' to 'Mars Needs Women'

With humans getting a closer view of Mars in the sky this summer, we thought you might enjoy a look at some of the best — and worst — movies about the red planet. (Hey, if you're really struck with Mars Madness, throw a Mars viewing party in your living room: A recent check at amazon.com finds that all of these films are available on DVD.)

The good

• "Total Recall" (1990): Long before Arnold Schwarzenegger was involved in the California recall election, he made this sci-fi flick about a construction worker obsessed by the colonization of Mars.

• "Capricorn One" (1978): In this entertaining 1970s romp, James Brolin, Sam Waterston and O.J. Simpson play astronauts who fake a Mars landing.

• "War of the Worlds" (1953): Martians invade Earth in this big-screen adaptation of the H.G. Wells novel, starring Gene Barry.

The bad

• "Santa Claus Conquers the Martians" (1964): When Martians kidnap Santa Claus and two Earth children, things look grim.

• "Mars Needs Women" (1967): Martian singles make a booty call on Earth.

• "Mars Attacks!" (1996), pictured at right: Director Tim Burton visualized alien medical experimentation by placing the head of Sarah Jessica Parker on a dog. The star-packed cast also includes Pierce Brosnan, Jack Nicholson, Annette Bening, Glenn Close, Danny DeVito, Michael J. Fox and Natalie Portman.

The recent

• "Red Planet" (2000), pictured at left: Val Kilmer, Carrie-Anne Moss, Benjamin Bratt, Tom Sizemore and Terence Stamp star as astronauts hoping to colonize Mars.

• "Mission to Mars" (2000): This one follows the exploits of astronauts hoping to rescue a colleague stranded on the red planet.

• "John Carpenter's Ghosts of Mars" (2001): Natasha Henstridge stars as a space cop charged with picking up a murderer

(Ice Cube) in a desolate Martian mining town of the future.

— Forrest Hartman, Reno Gazette-Journal

Animal lovers' events this weekend: Dog show, bunny-care workshop

A couple of events are happening this weekend for you animal lovers:

• The Hawaiian Kennel Club presents its 137th and 138th all-breed dog shows this weekend at Blaisdell Exhibition Hall. This is your chance to survey the beauties of the canine world as 77 breeds — 436 dogs — will be judged in categories, including sporting, hound, working, herding, terrier, toy and nonsporting. Judging begins at 9:30 a.m. today and at 8:30 a.m. tomorrow.

Admission is $5 general, free for kids 12 and younger. Bring your admiration, but leave your pooch at home, please. 262-5236.

• Back in April you got an adorable bunny for Easter. Need a refresher on how to care for him or her? There's a BunnyCares workshop with Cinde Fisher, 1-3 p.m. tomorrow at the Hawaii Kai Retirement Community, 446 Kawaihae St. (phase two, Hale Mauka).

Bring your healthy bunny: Topics will include keeping your furry pal cool and bonding with more than one bunny. Tom Chlebecek is the guest veterinarian.

Cost is $5. Call 381-5545 for reservations.

Stargazers head to Kahala park

If you'd rather watch heavenly stars than movie stars, cross your fingers for clear skies and head for Kahala. The monthly Star Party, with the Star Gazers of Hawaii, begins after sundown at Kahala Community Park. It's free; just show up and enjoy. 524-2450.

Students invited to free billiards party

Billiards, anyone?

Hawaiian Brian's is again having a free pool party for all students, 6 a.m.-6 p.m. today, before those back-in-school blues really settle in. Brian's — full of arcade games and 39 pool tables — is at 1680 Kapi'olani Blvd., second level, behind 24 Hour Fitness. 946-1343.

Young actors sought for Theatrefest

You're 13 to 20 years old and always wondered what it would be like to be part of a stage production.

Here's your chance: The Honolulu Theatre for Youth is holding auditions

today for its Theatrefest, which tours schools and plays to the public in November.

This year's Theatrefest theme is friendship; as in years past, the plays are written by HTY's Pacific Young Playwrights. The public shows are scheduled for Nov. 21-22 at Tenney Theatre.

Auditions are at 1-6 p.m. at Unity Church, 3608 Diamond Head Circle, at the corner of Monsarrat and Diamond Head Circle. No preparation is necessary, but be there by 3 p.m.