Saturday, December 31, 2005

Michael Fantasy マイケル・ファンタシー

If you want to see Michael Jackson fight everyone from every NES game and then save the earth, click here.
Thanks to Madmartigan for the link.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Christmas in Japan 日本でクリスマス

I came back to Ichinoseki in the early morning of the 24th, and after dicking on the internet for a while, showered and took a nap. I also got a phone call from home, which was great. On Sunday I was bored. Everyone was either in their hometowns or home countries. I went down to Paper Moon, and stayed at the bar until around 11, and since I was working the next morning and had to bike home in the sleet, I didn't order any alcohol. Not that it mattered. I got free German red wine (sweet!), free cake and fried chicken (which I hate eating but I did it anyway for politeness' sake).
24日の早い朝に一関に戻った、そしてネットで遊んでからシャワーを浴びて寝た。 あ、カナダに居る家族から電話を掛けたからちょっと嬉しかった。日曜日は 退屈。皆が故郷か自国へ戻ってしまった・・・ペーパームーンというバーに行って11時ぐらい店員に話し込んだ。もっと遅く居たかったけど半分雨半分雪が 降っていたし次の朝は働いていた。酒を頼まなかったけど関係なかったね・・・無料で美味しいドイツの赤ワインとケーキと揚げ鶏肉(食べるのが嫌いけどしな いと失礼だから食べた)。

Then something weird happened. The bartender showed me a picture of her wearing a jinbei. I said she looked cute and suggested we have a day in the summer where we all wear yukata/jinbei/whatever. She laughed and said she hates wearing traditional Japanese stuff because only old people do that.

Think carefully about this. What kind of culture throws away its own clothing as 'outdated'? Not Western, that's for sure. There's no difference between a suit and a kimono. The suit is the traditional Western dress. Yeah, it's changed over time, but it's still a a suit. But Japan has thrown away its traditional dress, yet another unique aspect of Japanese culture tossed in the rubbish heap ... I hear that younger people are starting to buy kimonos and Japanese stuff again, with innovative new designs that appeal to young buyers. I hope so.
よく考えてく ださい。どんな文化が自分の服は「もう廃れる」と思っているの?確かに西洋の文化じゃないよ。別に着物とスーツと違いはない。スーツは西洋国 の伝統的な服だ。もちろん時代的に変わったけど基本的にまだスーツだ。但し日本が伝統的な和服を捨てた。ゴミ箱に落とされたもう一つの日本の文化の特殊な 物の例だね。でも、最近若者が着物や和風な物を買っていると聞いた。新しい模様は若者に気に入れたかな。そうならいいね。

On the 26th I went to the office and drank as much tea as possible to stay awake. At six PM there was a staff party for someone who is getting married, and since the food was going to be 'traditional Japanese', I went to McDonalds beforehand. Good thing too, because except for all the yellowtail sashimi there was nothing there I could eat. Dad would have gone nuts with the crab and lobster and oysters and whatnot.
26日 は事務所に行って寝ないようにお茶を一杯一杯飲んだ。6時に結婚する職員の為に忘年会が有ったし、料理は「伝統な日本料理」だったから先にマックに 行った。よかった・・・はまち刺身以外は朕が食べられる物は全然なかった。カニや大海老やカキは盛り合わせだったのでお父さんが発狂して食べるけどさ。

As we spilled out into the street, the girls wanted to go to karaoke for the after party, while the men wanted to go to a hostess bar, which they ended up doing, obviously. I didn't go because I was already dead tired, and didn't feel like spending a hundred dollars to chat up a girl in a short dress. I did, however, notice that there was a 'salon' across the road, with an entry fee of 12 0000 yen. Probably an hourly fee. A salon is a place where you get a (usually) unclothed girl pour drinks for you while you chat her up, followed by a Hunnicutt. I didn't think Ichinoseki was big enough to have one.
行 きたかった。もちろん皆が結局スナックに入った。もう疲れたし短いスカートの女性と話す為に一万円を払いたくなかったので帰った。でも、路の向う側に一 万二千円入金のサロンが在ると見た。多分一時間だけかな。知らなかったら、サロンは(大体)会話をしながら自分の酒は裸婦に注がれる、そしてそれから尺八 をもらう。サロンが在る為に一関は十分大きくないと思っていた。

The next day at work most of the staff looked like hell. And then, the opportunity arose for me to use my Perfect Comeback. The one I had been waiting for ...
Staff A: S, are you going back to America (for New Year's)?
Staff B (in embarrassed whisper): S is from England.
Staff A: Huh?
Me (to Staff A): Are you heading home to China for New Year's?
Staff A: Whaaa!?! You think I'm Chinese? (pointing to self incredulously).
Me: You're Asian, aren't you? So you're probably heading home to China.
And so another point is rammed home. namely that all white people are not from the U.S. of A.

On a completely different topic, I completely cleaned my apartment. Furniture has been rearranged and and tatami has been duly vacuumed. I've also gotten a hankering recently for mapo doufu. Canadian beef may be for sale again but it's yet to reach Iwate ...

Oh yeah, and I cancelled NHK. I was paying 2500 a month in regular fees and then another 2500 for satellite. Now, I hardly ever watched TV, but I didn't mind paying the viewer fee because it really wasn't that much. But then NHK sent a man to inform me that I was not paying the satellite fee. I think NHK is boring as hell, as it seems to consist of shows about mushrooms, old men, old men and mushrooms, what happens to mushrooms without the care of old men, etc etc. But NHK's BS-1 satellite service is utter crap. Yes, compared to regular NHK. I shoved my TV in my closet (it's not really mine, it belongs to the apartment) to see if I could do without it. It's been about two months and I haven't missed TV one bit. So I checked to see if I could cancel online. Turns out I can't (I had to call and a very nice woman helped me cancel it), but here's an interesting blurb on their English site.
あ、 そしてNHKを無効した。普通の受信料で一ヶ月ずつ2500円ぐらい払っていて衛星放送でまた2500円ぐらいを払っていた。朕があまりテレビを見な いけど、そんなに高くなかったから別に受信料は払っていいと思っていた。しかし、衛星受信料を払ってないって教える為にNHKが朕のアパートまで職員を行 かせた。NHKは全くつまらないと思う。番組の全部はきのこ、おじいさん、きのことおじいさん、おじいさんが居ないときのこはどうになるについてばかり見 たい。でもBS-1衛星放送は百割糞だと思う。はい、それは普通のNHKと比べると。見なくて生きられると確認する為にテレビを戸棚に入れた(売りたいけ ど自分よりアパートのテレビだ・・・)。もう二ヶ月ぐらい掛かったし全然テレビの事に寂しくない。ネット上で無効するかどうかと調べた。実は出来ない(電 話しなくちゃ;優しいお姉さんのお陰で無効した)けど、受信料の説明頁で面白い事を読んだ。

"The receiving fees allow NHK to secure financial independence and extend fair and impartial news coverage and present high-quality programs that are socially significant, without being influenced by ratings or government or private organizations."
公平・公正な立場で放送の自主性を保ちながら、テレビやラジオの放送を通じて国民の生命・財産を守り、公共の福祉、文化の向上に貢献することが、NHKの 基本的使命です。NHKがその使命を果たすためには、政府や企業などの特定のスポンサーに頼ることのない「財政の自立」が必要です。」

Yeah f*cking right. Author Alex Kerr quoted a Far Eastern Economic Review article in his book Dogs and Demons: The Fall of Modern Japan, which I shall reproduce for you here: "[in 1992] an NHK documentary on harsh living conditions in the Tibetan Himalayas featured a sand avalanche, footage of a monk praying for an end to a three-month dry spell, and an explanation that his horse had died of thirst. NHK later admitted that a crew member had deliberately caused the avalanche; it had rained twice during the filming; and the monk, whom it paid, did not own the dead horse." ("An NHK Documentary": Sebastian Moffett, "Slipping Standards, FEER, 25 April 1996.
全く嘘じゃない?アレックス・カーという作家が「犬と鬼―知られざる日本の肖像」 で「遠亜経済検討雑誌」でいい引用を使った。「(1992年に)チベットのヒマラヤ山の厳しい生活についての記録番組(ドキュメンタリ)が砂の滑落、3ヶ 月ぐらい雨が降らななかったので坊さんが祈っている、そして水がなかったから坊さんの馬が死んだのを見せた。後で、NHKが職員達がわざと滑落をした、記 録中で雨が二回降った、そしてNHKが金で援助した坊さんは死んでいる馬の持ち主じゃなかった。」(”NHKの記録番組”:セバスチャン・モフェット、” 落ちる基準”、遠亜経済検討雑誌、1996年4月25日)

I'm not going to miss it.

Censorship Again 又検閲をしてみているの?

My post on the evil museum at Yasukuni Shrine has been erased from the front page again. Yet it still exists. Read the truth here.

Whoa. あれ?

Is it just me, or did my post on the Yasukuni Museum on the 27th just disappear?

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Back to Iidabashi 飯田橋へ戻り

By now I had the whole afternoon to kill, so by using the GPS on my phone I decided to go try and see a movie. The nearest station was Iidabashi on the JR Central Line, so I walked there. The landscape became more familiar, and I remembered schools and shops. Finally I emerged out of the jumble of streets and saw the building which encompasses the Tokyo International Youth Hostel where Chris and Mark and I stayed at in May. The bath is great. A little expensive but I recommend it to all. I wanted to get to Ikebukuro, partly because that's where my night bus would depart from and also because there seemed to be a few movie theatres there. For those that don't know me very well, I can get lost by walking in a straight line. That's why I wanted to go near a place that was near my departing bus station. Anyway, I was staring at the map above the ticket machine and trying to find the price for the station I was supposed to go to, according to my phone. I imagine my face resembled some kind of wrinkled angry white man. I wasn't angry, just wondering why I couldn't find the damn station on the map. A Japanese girl standing next to me asked me in English if I needed any help, and I showed her my phone and the route I wanted to take. The conversation quickly switched into Japanese, and she told me I needed to take the subway, not the JR line. I thanked her profusely, got the usual 'Your Japanese is so wonderful' comment, and happily received an incredulous look from her white boyfriend who had been standing there silent the whole time. Take that, whitey.
午後は全く暇 だったのでなんか映画を見ようと決めて携帯の 電航(ナヴィ)で探した。一番近い駅は中央線の飯田橋だったのでそこに歩いていった。あの学校を 見た事あるかその店を知っていると思うとかを考えて風景を段々覚えていた。結局道の森から出て朕とクリスとマークが泊まった若者低価旅館(ユースホステ ル)建物を見た。お風呂は素晴らしいよ。ちょっと高いけど皆に好評するよ。映画館が在るし朕が乗るバスがそこから出発するので池袋に行きたかったけど、理 由は僕は迷子だからバスが出発する駅に早く行きたかった。とにかく、どうやって行くって駅の地図を見ながら携帯の電航も見ていた。朕の顔は多分「起こって いる白人の男」だったかな。起こってなかったけどなんで地図で行きたい駅が見つかれないと理解できなかっただけ。隣に立っている日本人の女性が英語で「私 はなにか手伝えますか」と聞いて朕が携帯の画面を見せた。中央線じゃなくて地下鉄に乗ればすぐ到着するって教えてくれた。何回も「ありがとうございます」 と言って感謝した。普通「貴方の日本語は凄いですね」と解説した。そして朕が喜んで彼女の静かでそのまま立っていた白人の彼氏に疑い深い顔をしてもらっ た。それが好きでしょうね、白鬼。

So I excused myself and ducked into the adjacent building to take the subway. While reading that map, I was asked by a Malaysian guy on how to get to Tokyo Station. Since going there by subway would take two transfers, I suggested that we take the train, which we did and I brought him safely to Tokyo. Since that was done, I said goodbye and took the Central Line express to Shinjuku, transfer to Yamanote Line, get to Ikebukuro. Which was on the other side of Tokyo. Meh, so what, it was a nice thing to do. When we were transferring and waiting for another train, the guy without the flag in this picture had been on the rails doing something to the tracks. The look on his face was great as he was wondering when a high-speed train of death would approach and how much time he'd have to move out of the way.
「失礼します」と言ってから隣の建物に行って階段を下げるから地下鉄の販売機に進んだ。地下鉄の地図を 読みながらどうやって東京駅に行くと傍人のマレーシ ア人に尋ねられた。地下鉄で行けば2回乗り換えしなくちゃならなかったので電車で行こうと提議した。そうして安全的に彼を東京駅に連れて行った。それが終 わってからさよならと言って中央線の新宿行きの快速に乗って山手線で乗り換えして池袋に行った。東京の向こう側だったけど・・・まいや、優しかったから十 分でしょう。乗り換え中に写真で立っている旗を持っていない男の人は鉄道の修理とかをやっていた。快速轢死電車がいつ来るかなの顔をやっていたので本当に 面白かった。

Arriving in Ikebukuro, I walked around trying to find the damn movie theatre. I found the bus stop I would be departing from, but try as I might I kept on going in the wrong direction to get to the theatre. According to my phone I was getting close, so I went up another block, and then found I had gone too far. All right. Backtrack, take side street, come out on correct side of street. And there it was, and it had only taken like 45 minutes to walk 200m from the station! I approached the theatre eagerly - it looked small, but maybe good enough for the Yamato movie I wanted to see. I was only a few metres away, and looked up to see what was playing.
池袋に着いてその糞な映画館を探し歩いた。一関へ帰る為のバス停留所を見 つけたけど、幾らやってみても映画館が見つからなかった。携帯の電航によって段々 近くなってきていたので、もう少し進んで、また確認するとやっぱり行き過ぎた・・・ちょっと戻って、小さな路に入ってから正しい側に着いた。よーし、見つ けた!駅から約200メートルぐらい歩くのはただ45分掛かったな~ちょっと興奮して映画館の近くに着いた。ちょっと小さそうだってけど、見たかった「男 たちの大和」の映画は上映していたかな。もう前に立っていたので、上を見て看板でどんな映画が上映していたと認めた。

Right. Not only did I spend 45 minutes searching for what turned out to be a porn theatre, because of the holiday it was closed! Double unfair!

All right, fine. According to my phone there was another theatre across the railroad tracks. I went there, and failed to find it. I did see a guy with wild hair scouting two high school girls, though. Scouts hang around the busy stations and if they see a likely target, approach and attempt to get the girls to act in porn movies. It's a good way for high school girls to earn extra money.
はいはい、でもまだ諦めてないよ!携帯の情報によって鉄道の向う に他の映画館はありそうだった。そっちに行って又見つけられなかった。でも、狂っている髪 の毛の男が女子高生二人をスカウトしていた。込んでいる駅でスカウトさんが待って、いい的を見たらすぐ話し込んでエロ映画を作ると誘う。バイトより女子高 生によってお金がすぐ得られる。

Feeling a bit defeated, I charged my phone and laptop at a pillar outside of a Parco and hoped that there was a wireless network around that I could use. Of course, there wasn't.

I ended up packing my stuff and spent about four hours at this net cafe near the bus stop. Ah well, the girl at the front was nice. I met some crazy peopleon the elevator which was fun, but the ride home was pretty uneventful. And that was my trip to Tokyo, in three posts.
荷物を全部準備して四 時間ぐらいこちらのバス停留所の近くにあるネットカフェで過ごした。まいや、女性な店員さんは優しかった。上下機(じょうかき、エレ ベーター)で発狂している人達に会って楽しかったけど、バスで一関に帰るのはまあまあ書くことはないね。そして、三つの記事でそれは朕の東京旅だった。

Monday, December 26, 2005

The Right-Wingers are Nuts 右派の奴等は痴人だ

After leaving the Imperial Palace, there were various groups outside in the street carring banners like 'Japan is an Imperial Country' and 'The Emperor Must Be Revered'. Fine. I can live with that. However, they were passing out flyers at the street corner - and some were being passed out by women! - that detailed why Japan should NOT have a female emperor. The general argument presented in the leaflet was that historically it has been a male line, and even the past Empresses had inherited the throne because of their fathers, not mothers, and if a woman became Empress then her children would inherit the male blood of the non-imperial-family member and thus cease to be royal, and other countries allow the first born child to succeed to the throne but dammit, Prussia didn't, so Japan doesn't have to either. And other bullsh*t.
皇居を出てから「日本は皇国だ」とか「天皇尊 敬」のような旗を持っている団体を一杯見た。別にいい。但し、どうして日本は女帝が許せないの理由は載ってい る広報を道角で出していたし、女性も出していたのは信じられない!一般な論じは歴史的に男系だった、昔の女性天皇もお母さんじゃなくてお父さんから天皇に なったので本当は男系、現代の女性が天皇になったら配偶者とするの子供が「彼」の子供になると血統が彼のになってもう皇族な子供じゃないし、他国の王族で 一番年上の子供が次の王か女王になれるけど、プロシアはその制度がなかったので日本はそうする訳ない、等等等の糞ばかり。

And so I created this little button. I mean really, I can just read the headline now: "Imperial Line Extinguished; Imperialists Rejoice, "At least a woman didn't ascend the throne" as millennia-old tradition dies."
そのせいでこの小さな釦を作っ た。何か新聞が想像できる・・・「皇位継承が消え;皇帝主義者が喜び。二千年間以上な伝統が亡くなり「女が天皇に成らなくてよかったね!」と宣言し」。

Then the menacing right-wing trucks and vans started to appear, screaming 'Tennou-Heika Banzai ... BANZAI!!!!' over and over again.

Whatever semblance of tolerance I had disappeared when I saw this big black truck. It's designed to bully people into following the doctrine of Emperor-reverence.

What do most people think of it? Not much, judging by the graffitti on this sign.

I went back to Tokyo Station at this point. Here we see the dome from the inside of the station.

This is the old part of the station and actually looks good compared to the concrete crap that makes up the rest of it.

I then planned to visit the Yasukuni Museum. On the way there I found another propaganda van!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Tennou-Heika Banzai! 天皇陛下万歳!

My day trip to Tokyo to see the Emperor started off, appropriately, with a fight while waiting for the bus in Sendai. Drunken groups were pouring out of restaurants, and one group came near me. They were laughing and jostling, and suddenly one guy - in the photo the tall one on the left - just wailed into another, younger man with a kick to the stomach. Amazingly, the guy just laughed it off, until the assailant gave him a right hook to the face that sent him sprawling into the road. The guy in white held the fighter back and calmed him down. Wow.
天皇を見に行く日は適当に仙台でバスに待っている間に喧嘩で始めた。酔っている団体が居酒屋から出て 一つのが朕の近くに来た。笑いながら押し合っていた が、突然に一人の男の人(写真で左の背が高い人)が他の若い男の人の腹をぶっ蹴った。驚いた事は打たれた人がただ笑ったが、起こっている男性がすぐ彼の顔 を打って道に押した。白いコートを着ている男性が彼を抱きとめた。うわ。

Arriving in Tokyo after an uncomfortable night on the bus, I went in search of electricty so I could power my laptop and watch Simpsons until it was time to go to the palace. Look, I arrived at 5 am, and the palace didn't open until 9:30, so I needed something to do. I found an underground mall near Tokyo Station and an unguarded outlet. Unlike Canada, it is almost impossible to find an outlet on the outside of a building or a public place. I wonder why, for both countries, really. I also found it hilarious that in the heart of Tokyo, the city that a lot of Westerners consider the world capital of technology and fashion and whatever, the first sign I saw was "I Love New York".
バスの小さすぎる席で半分ぐらい寝られた夜が過ごしてから東京に到着した。皇居に行くまでに膝電(新作語!ラップ(膝)トップ(上)のコンピューター(電脳)=膝上電脳=膝電(ひざでん)!どう思う?)でシンプソンズを 見る為にコンセント(なんでコンセントという?和製の「concentric+plug」だが電器接続具とあまり関係ないでしょう?電接か接電はどう思 う?)を地下商店街で探しに言った。皇居は九時半まで開いてなかったので時間を過ごす為に膝電を持って来た。東京駅の近くの商店街で誰も近くに居なかった 電説を見つけて8時ぐらいまで番組を見た。カナダなら建物の外壁でよく電接が見つかれるけど日本はあまりないね。両国にとってどうしてかな。あ、そして西 洋人が世界の技術と流行の首都だと思っている東京の中心で「ニューヨークを愛している」の看板を見ると皮肉的に面白いと思う。

Homeless ... uh, long hair, so maybe woman? In the front foyer of Tokyo Station.

I finally got up and went outside the station to try and find my way to the Emperor's palace. The flags were out in full force, sort of.

A lot of people were lined up. This was at around 7:30 AM. Good thing I came early! On my way to the lineup a weird old guy came up beside me and asked me (in English) where I was from. I replied 'Canada' to which he said 'may Canada be blessed with peace'. Surprised, I said 'May Japan also be blessed with peace'. Strange. Was he sincere? I wonder what would have happened if I had said 'China' or 'Korea'.
大 勢が並んでいた。これは七時半ぐらいだった。早く来ると良かった!行きながら変なおじいさんが傍に来て英語で「どちらから来ましたか」と尋ねた。「カナ ダ」と返事した。それで彼が「カナダが平和に恵まれるように」と言った。ちょっとびっくりしたが、「日本も平和に恵まれるように」と言った。変だな。彼は 真剣だったかな?「カナダ」の代わりに「中国」か「韓国」と答えたらどのように起こるかな?

There were lots of uniformed police and secret police in the crowd too. Here a staff member hands out Japanese flags to all of us so we can wave and go nuts.

By chance I met two Korean university students majoring in Chinese who had come from Inchon to see Tokyo and the Emperor. They weren't especially happy about waving the Hinomaru, but I told them hey, it could be worse, it could be the Rising Sun with Rays, the one on my sidebar.

I then suggested that maybe the flag would look better with a sakura leaf in the middle.

Or maybe this one.

After passing through police, metal detectors, a long wait in line and many jokes about what kind of cake the Emperor eats on his birthday, the gates to the Imperial Palace opened and we began to file in. In front of us was a man with long hair, a trench coat that just covered his ass, and pantyhose. In my conversation with the Korean girls which consisted of simple English and Mandarin, we dubbed him to be 'unique' or 'qiguai', which just means 'weird'. One of the girls then said that her friend loved qiguai people.
金属探知機を持っている警察に検査されて、並 びながら天皇が誕生日でどんなケーキを食べるのが好きな冗談を言ってから、皇居の門が開いた、そして朕等が段々進んだ。朕等の前に長くて黒い髪の毛、お尻 を少し隠すコート、そしてパンティ・ストッキングを履いている男性が居た。朕と韓国人の女性の会話は簡単な英語と中国語だったので、彼の事について英語の 「ユニーク」と中国語の「チグヮイ」(奇怪)を使った。それから一人の女性が友達は奇怪な人が好きって言った。

A nice view of the bridge.

Getting closer ...

Ooo! Nice lamp!

The Imperial Guard stands ready.

My first view of the Inner Castle.

Looking back to public Tokyo, I see a LOT of people have turned up. I read on the Net that there would be only about 2000 people but I later read in the paper that around 14 000 turned up.

Almost there ...

Ok, we're here. Now what?

This guy wishes he was out of the sun.

The Changing of the Guard!

And out they come!

The crowd erupted into flag-waving madness with cheers of 'Tennou-Heika, Banzai!' or '(May) the Emperor (live for) ten thousand years!' I like the look on the guard's face on the right. 'What the fuck is wrong with these people!' After waving for a minute or two, the Emperor made his 'Shut up, I want to talk' face. He then spoke about all the snow Japan was getting this year, that he worried about the people very much, and he hoped all of us took care of our health. What a nice guy (seriously).
皆 が狂って旗を振って「天皇陛下万歳!」と叫んだ。右側にいる警備さんの顔が好きだ。「この庶民に何で興奮してるかい?」。手を一分ぐらい振ってから、天皇 が「口を閉め、もう話すよ」の顔を作った。それから天皇が今年の日本で雪が一杯降っている事について発表した、そして在日本の皆について心配していたの で、健康と体を大事にしてって言った。天皇は優しいな!(皮肉無し)

A wider view. This picture was taken with my phone.

As one Japanese passer-by remarked, 'This is real international exchange'.

Upon leaving the castle grounds I got a shot of this building. Watchtower, perhaps?

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Here Comes Santa Claus サンタさんが来る

I was at my last school for the season the other day and they decided to have an entirely Christmas-themed lesson. To that end, they requested that I dress as Santa Claus. Now, I can get along with this. I shoved my sweater inside the red jacket thingy to give myself an added layer of fat. Oh yeah, I got the results of my medical exam back. The prognosis: perfect health except for one thing: fat! Height of 181 cm and a weighing in at 85kg. But I just need to lose 5kg to be considered 'normal' so not too bad!
先日はこの季節の最後の学校に居て、クリスマスの題で教えようと決まった。それで、朕がサンタ さんの仮装を着てと求めた。喜んで同意した。もっと太くなる 為にセーターを赤いコートに入れた。あ、違う話題だけど、健康結果をもらった。完全完璧健康だけど・・・太い!181の身長だが体重は85キロ・・・ま、 5キロだけ減ったら「普通」になるのでそんなに良くないね!

Anyway I walk into the classroom as Santa, and the first thing that happens is ... a kid jumps out of his chair and tries to kancho me! Good God, what is this world coming to when Japanese kids try to kancho Santa? Is it really necessary to impart to these kids the lesson that you should not inflict bodily harm on the guy who is bringing you presents? I told the teacher but she just got a half-embarrassed look on her face and said nothing.
サンタさんの 仮装で教室に入って最初に起こったことは・・・或る子供が椅子から飛んで朕をカンチョーしてみた。サンタをカンチョーしてみる?地球の子供達 がこんなに悪くなった?贈り物を無料で持ってきて出してあげる人を犯すなって教えるのは本当に必要ある???先生に教えたけどただ半分恥ずかしい顔をして 何も言わなかった・・・

While waiting for lunch, I told one teacher in the staff room what had happened and she got this shocked look on her face, like "Not only do you know what a kancho is but it's actually been done to you and it happens regularly to ALT's? My God!"

So a normal reaction. で、普通の反射。

I also took some really silly pictures of myself with my phone. Please see below.

Right, enough of that. よし、もう止めようね(へへ)。

The kids were making curry for lunch and I was lucky enough to be invited to eat with them.

I asked this kid to make a 'show me the deliciousness of the food' face and this was the result.

At the end of the classes in the morning the kids all gave me Christmas cards! Aww! Some kids REALLY put a lot of work into the cards. Check out the decorations glued to this one! I'm going to have to make a big certificate for each of the classes that made these for me.

During the afternoon I had THREE classes at once, but the teachers all came along too, so thankfully we had some discipline control. My favourite teacher in the school, whom I have dubbed Mr. Lynch, regularly yells at them and is not afraid to dish out the discipline. I love the guy! I showed The Matrix Christmas video to them all too and they went nuts with laughter - except when the Grinch showed up they all said 'Yay! It's Hard Gay!'. That makes absolutely no sense.

During the all-out chaos English activity (I mean there were like 90 kids in the room), one teacher (young, female, does not appear to be a disciplinarian) was attempted-kancho'ed by one of the Bad Kids. I should have picked him up and hauled his ass to the principal's office, but showing more restraint than I did last time, I simply told the teacher afterwards.

"Oh yes," she sighed, "he's a wild boy". 

Don't give up!