July 30, 2007


So I was offhandedly asked what the town's motto would be in English. In Japanese, it was something like 月の引力が強い町 (don't remember clearly, but I think that was it). In translation it would mean, "the effect of the moon on the tide is strong in this town." Literally, it is just "[the] moon's gravity [is] strong[ly effective on the tide in our] town".
So I said, "Uh... 'Tara: the moon's effect is strong here...' or something?"
It wasn't until later I realized they were making this translation into a t-shirt.
Not only have I contributed to the Engrish phenomenon, but the shirts will give everyone who reads it the impression that the residents of this town are lunatics (the entymology of lunatic is one who goes crazy as the moon becomes fuller).

July 27, 2007

Welcome to Dongmakgol

This was a great movie. Alex, I imagine you have already seen it, yeah? Course, I had to read Japanese subtitles the whole time what with being a Korean movie. I gotta say, Americans' acting is slightly better in Korean films than in Japanese ones. The directors probably actually know English.
Sorry, Japan, you know it's true.


It's not as if an emmissary from outer space will have slipped into school uniform and be loitering around seeking a partner.

This is gonna be a bad day

The day I decide to wear pants is the day they don't have the AC on in the school. I am sitting in a soup of my own sweat; this has been a bad day so far, and will likely continue.

July 23, 2007

My Simpsons avatar

It is really hard to make something that matches me at the Simpsons movie website. Everyone in the show has receding chins! Got the eyebrows right, if my screen captures on my youtube profile are any indication. Do I have the frowny eyebrows that much in normal life too?

July 20, 2007

Mr. B puts his hat in the ring

If one is in Japan long enough, they might notice these signs...
Basically, they are boards where the candidates get equal face time. But I thought the board looked woefully unrepresentative of the international mingling that is supposed to be happening in Japan.

And besides, I could beat these guys in a race.

So I decided to make my own campaign poster. The caption says どんと来い, meaning "bring it on!" Only I had a brain nap and forgot the い.

It 's a little small, but I don't want to waste any more of the school's resources. Despite that, this pic looks pretty good if you zoom in.

Oh you'd better raise your hand, lady. In fear. To ask for help from the unstoppable juggernaut that is my raised eyebrow.

Vote for Clay!
I quickly took my poster down; I am not sure if this is legal. I'll put it up in Kashima maybe.
This is not the first time I have joked my way into a campaign. In high school, I ran unannounced and made my own campaign posters. In the boy's room, above the latrines, we had signs that said "How's it hangin? Vote for Clay!" In the weight room, the sign read: "When you are doing your clean and jerk, think of a nice, clean jerk, like Clay, for president." There was also, "Vote for Clay and he will give you ten dollars.* *:Clay will not give you anything."

July 18, 2007

I win.

I win at life. Sorry to be the one to tell you that you lost. Why do I win? Because I walk and ride my bike about town with a kitten patiently perched on my shoulder. The old ladies I pass all yell out how cute it is. Traffic stops. This means I win, any way you cut it :p
But on a more serious note, I think my summer is gonna be major boring. I canceled a trip to China, because the man was keeping me down. But maybe I will go to somewhere else with the gf.

July 12, 2007

Enjoy your Schadenfreude

And in case you don't know kids' mental abilities, let Zach Galifianakis remind you.

July 11, 2007

Movement in a still image

Just a little experiment. Go here to see. The pic is from the mountains around here. The band is Japanese.

July 10, 2007

I'll have you give an answer

The title is wierd cause it relates to today's language discussion. Yay language discussions! Anybody? *cricket sound* *cough*
Just when I thought I had "~てもらった" pegged as "I had him ~for me", I go and run into a new example to confuse me.
Today, a teacher said, after he looked up and realized I had written an example sentence, "Mr. Bは前に黒板で文を書いてもらった."
I thought to myself, Wait, you didn't have me write that for you, I did it of my own volition; independantly.

After some discussion, I think I may extend the interpretation of "~てもらった" to "He did something (~) that I/we needed/required (whether we requested that thing or not is irrelevant)."

Thoughts? 君の答えを書いてもらおうと思う。

July 6, 2007

What books to buy

The woman who wrote the gaikokujin husband book has a website, and she does other books in the same style.

July 4, 2007


So I got a lecture from the powers that be today, and it basically boiled down to one thing: my lack of tatemae, or putting up the correct front. It still grates on my nerves, coming from the culture that I do. We mostly reserve such behavior for the service industry where I come from. It even feels downright dishonest to me at times to do tatemae. But as my bosses put it, I have to act Japanese when I am in Japan, whether or not it makes sense. しょうがない, they say. It can't be helped.
But I am a little irritated at the teachers who reported me for the stark crime of laying on my side to watch a comedy show in the gym on a hot and humid day. They want me to act according to rules I have no way of knowing, to play along, to be a chatty person (in Japanese?), to pretend to be as busy as them, and yet they don't really let me into their group nor try to understand why I am doing things in a way they aren't used to, and they never will.
Clay, quit your bitching and put on a happy face. That's tatemae.

July 3, 2007


Earth to radio script!


今日の表現はEarth to ~ 







So then I… Hey! Earth to Bill! Wake up.

Oh sorry.


そして、あたし…オイ! ビルさん!もしもし。起きなさい。


July 1, 2007

Harkonen UFO

The Mexican UFO club came to the scientific conclusion that this is a witch, but it is obviously barron Harkonnen from the Sci-fi epic Dune.