It's JLPT season again and the 500 yen application forms are being sold at bookstores across Japan. Sean kindly brought home two this week - one for him and one for me. He sent his off the other day but mine is still on the table; unopened, untouched. When I passed the Level 4 exam
I find that the definition of a bad day varies depending on where you live. For example, I grew up in Bumblefork, Florida, where a bad day involved: Getting sideswiped by a senior citizen whose drivers' license should have been revoked ten years ago Getting heckled by a Joe Dirt-type individual Discovering that no less
The truth of the matter is that even the Japanese can't live on Japanese food alone. Witness the multitudes of ethnic restaurants and the hordes of Japanese people who hungrily flood McDonald's every day for a nice triple-beef patty Mega Makku. Cooking Japanese style is fun, easier on the pocketbook and simpler on the shopping
Vending machines. Everywhere you look. Almost literally. Drinks. Batteries. Sake. Toys. Snacks. Ties. Disposable cameras. Cigarettes. And my personal favorite: Beer. It's on the go. And it's legal to take it with you.
The vacation is over and, just as in my own school days, a bitter pall hangs over the classrooms. As a student, it would never have occurred to me that teachers could feel depressed about the end of summer vacation and yet we mope, picking solemnly at the piles of candy brought to school by
Because it's summer vacation and there is no school the next day, the nights are for fun. Movies. Drinks. Long ambling walks. Dinners at previously unexplored places. I, personally, favor uphill bike rides to meet friends at an izakaya for some midnight socializing. Because it's 35 degrees, an ice cream cone from the conbini sounds
I saw Kung Fu Panda last night - perhaps the first movie I've seen in Japan that actually felt worth the 1800 yen ticket. I left the theater energized, hungry for dumplings and, as always, in awe of Jack Black's awesomeness. I fear that a desire for dumplings will grip me as did the desire
There is never, ever, ever any sort of mess whatsoever on a public toilet's seat.
I realize that, when I blog, I start weaving narrative threads and allow them to simply dangle. It's not that I lack commitment, interest or creative vision: it's more that my threads become variegated. Regardless, I could stand to pick up the fallen stitches once in a while. Here, a handful of updates on stories
Stickers are a joy. I'd long forgotten their simple charm but upon accepting a job working with children, stickers have once again permeated my world. I absolutely love buying stickers. The stationery and gift store near my apartment has racks and racks of them marching along the walls, offering a bewildering variety of shapes and