Monday, August 13, 2012


...on second thought, I need a more upbeat ending than that:


Saturday, August 11, 2012

With Apologies to T.S. Eliot

This is the way the blog ends
This is the way the blog ends
This is the way the blog ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.


Maybe I'm being overly dramatic -- perhaps it's not "the end," and this blog will have some sort of after-life. I'm going to leave it up here, and who knows, I might post here again from time to time.

But after more than five years, I just don't seem to want to do this anymore. And I seem to have just...stopped. Just like that. Without any thought.

I will try to comment more on all the blogs upon which I lurk, and you can always find me on Facebook and Twitter.

Just know I'm still out here, and still homesick, wherever I happen to be.

'Til we meet again!

(or if you prefer, "Till human voices wake us, and we drown.")

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Actual Conversation

ME: "Oh, am I embarrassing you again?"

TEENAGE OFFSPRING (rolling eyes): "No, you're embarrassing YOURSELF."

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Wait. It's Thursday.

And I just used words.

Crap! Ruined it.

That's all.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Found Object

LOST: One pale orange rose, near Shiba Pool.
FOUND: The same.

Who dropped it, I wonder? 

Anyway, it looks (and smells) nice, in the hanging bud vase in my kitchen. 
Someone's loss was my gain.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Sign of the Times?

Today, for the first time EVER, a guy approached me in Azabu Juban and said he was homeless and hungry.

He was reasonably well-dressed and spoke to me in very polite Japanese.

I offered him the cheese-filled imagawa-yaki I had just bought to bring home for the kids, but he said, "No, I'd rather have a bento. Do you have any money?"

Nice try. I wished him luck, and walked away.

I wonder why he approached a foreigner? I noticed over the years that there is something about me that makes homeless people approach me -- maybe they can somehow sense (correctly) that I never ignore them, and always speak to them? I don't know.

Maybe he was less shy about begging for money for food (or liquor, or who knows what else) from someone clearly from outside his society? Maybe he thought that many white people in Japan are Christians and are therefore more likely to do an act of charity?

I also noticed something else, walking through Shiba Park at night recently.

In addition to the usual homeless people -- the ones dressed in rags, muttering to themselves, with their belongings in dozens of shopping bags around them -- there are people sleeping on the benches wearing construction-worker clothing. Sometimes pairs of their washed underwear and socks are drying on the back of the bench.

Ah, Japan, where the Lost Decade never ended.

So how does one explain the yield on the benchmark 10-year Japanese government bond falling to a nine-year low?

I guess right now, the rest of the world is just as lost.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

The Thrill of the Case

I feel like writing another menstruation-inspired navel-gazing post, just for the anonymous commenter who thinks my last one showed that I've got "some serious hostility issues."

I can't think of anything hostile to say, though, so I'd thought instead I'd show everyone the pretty case I use to store my tampons.

I recently found it in a "recycle shop," a store that sells used stuff. I immediately recognized it to be  from Indenya, meaning that it is a design printed with lacquer on deerskin. It was in brand-new condition, at a fraction of what these products usually sell for.

And look, it's a perfect size and shape for tampons:

The only catch is, I wish I had found something like this thirty years ago. I will probably only need to store tampons for another few years, and then I'll have to figure out something else to use it for.

But better late than never, you know?