China Students

18 04 2008

Well today for the first time I went to a Japanese cram school to teach a lesson. But, the catch is it was for Chinese students. At first I wasn’t sure how that would be different and in the end, there wasn’t any difference. They all have been in Japan for around 2 years so their Japanese is really good and it seems they think speaking in Japanese is allowed while speaking in Chinese is not. The tough part was.. for some people this was their VERY first English lesson. I’m talking no ABC’s, no pronunciation, nothing. So needless to say that even the simple lesson of “My name is ____” was very taxing and took up the full hour and a half lesson. Plus really no cuties in the group. Bummer. Next week will be easier.

Yesterday one of my students went to the grocery store after class, and after I was finished I went there too. Earilier today we were talking about going ice skating so she spotted me and came over and pointed to her phone. So I just said whats your email? with no other dialogue. As I was doing this unbeknownst to me another foreigner dude was in the grocery store and was watching and said.. ” Are you serious?” and in true 40 Year old virgin fashion…. he said, ” teach me!” haha good timing can make anyone look good.


Japanese of the Day… Using a picture of Ai Otsuka.. some kanji study 

The Kanji says… Daisuki(大好き) da yo! 大塚愛 (Otsuka Ai).  meaning… I Love! ***Ai Otsuka!***

***********************thanks for the correction from loyal reader Daniel****************

Music and Japanese of the Day… the band Deen with  – ” hitori ja nai” – literally not(ja nai) one person(hitori) – but translated means not alone! Got to love the guitar player that is WAAAY to into it. Rock out.. in a sort of churchy sounding rock way. But it’s uplifting at least.



Party + Guest

18 03 2008

The party was pretty sweet. It was a easter based party, so there was a few interesting jesus based costumes like a jesus, a nun(played by a guy) and a girls with rabbit ears, which I think I have a fetish for haha. It was about half foreigners half japanese which I think is a good mix. I always end up talking to the Japanese people, and to be honest, sometimes I feel like the foreigners treat me different;y because of this. It’s fine and I’m not going to stop, but I got a few comments that made me think. But anyways it was fun and I drank a lot. I also got the “here put your email in my phone” once, and somehow my phone has 2 new people in it which is good news I guess. I think some Japanese like just having foreigners in there phone, but I do the same thing so its ok lol…

This warm weather is really causing me to fall in love every three seconds. The scenery has gotten A LOT better, not that it was ever bad in the first place but DAMN.

So last night student date girl said she wanted to bring over food out of the blue, so of course I said yes. We ended up chilling for a while, watching a movie, I showcased classic Youtube videos for a long time. Still didn’t hook up. Yeah I know. I’m a joke. But it is fun to just hang out sometimes you know! But yeah I know. We’re going to Yanagawa Thursday which has some sort of canal thing, which should be cool…


Japanese of the Day……Just some random words…

YAPPARI – やっぱりー(as one expected,after all)<—very common
KEKKOU - けっこうー(quite, very well)
TSUITSUI - ついついー(unintentionally, unconsciously),
NAKANAKA - なかなかー(not easily)

Yeah no sentences I have to go to work….Guest source Chihiro from the best Miyazaki movie “Spirited Away”



Music of the Day…….Blind Guardian – ” Noldor” Epic German Band… kind of nerd metal but they have some good songs… for example….Rock out.

Recap Time bonus I’m a criminal

10 03 2008

Really cool night. It was a lot of fun. Went out to eat with student which was awesome. Then to a sweet party that she and I both had a really cool time at.

She had a wake up at 6 or so, so we had to leave about 12. Being the nice guy I am, I said I would walk her home. That ended up being the best part of the night. 30 or so minutes of not sure where we are random walking the back streets of Japan. It was another one of those “wow I’m actually here” moments. The perfect mix of that great adventure, first date, drunkeness to be an amazing time. She is really cool. Again I didn’t go for a kiss. Call me lame but I guess I had such a good time I didn’t want to risk a pull away or something which I’m sure wouldnt happen. Could of been a nice exclamation point on the night, but I was a pussy. But it was awesome anyways!

The party was all foreigners… and to be honest I did feel like I got some “oh he brought a japanese person looks” maybe that was just in my head but I felt it. One dude was talking to my student for a while and she was having a good time so I left her alone. I told her to tell me when she wants to go home since she had to work in the morning. I went back to check on her and she said lets go so we left. As we were leaving the dude that she had been talking to whispered “is that your gf?.” Being the bastard I am, I said “not really” when I really should of just said “no”. I do feel bad for this since he was like soo sorry that he was talking to her. I told him its no big deal man but he really was worried and scared. I mean I like seemingly being intimitating, but I really should should of just said she wasn’t my gf becuase she isn’t and I don’t think I want her to be. I’m a dick sometimes. It was a quick desicion and I made the selfish one like I usually do. Persnal Character Flaw #324.

We are defenitly hanging out later in the week though and next weekend there is another party that I would love for her to come to, so we will see what happens!


AFTER the party and walking her home, i decided I wanted to get some curry. So I got on my bike and was on my way. Suddenly a police car rides next to me. At first I wasn’t sure what it was about but they quickly said stop, so I did. They were concerned about my bicycle light. I just said its broken in Japanese, and its the truth. The then asked if I was drunk. I was a little buzzed, but I said earlier yes, now no. They seemed to be satisfied and left me go and said “be careful!” in english. I don’t know why, but I was never scared or nervous. They were really nice and seemed to be totally understanding. Maybe that a little gaijin power and they were scared I couldn’t understand but they were totally cool. Police cars here do look pretty cool as well. Like they are from terminator or something… so anyways that my breaking the law story.


Japanese of the Day.. don’t feel like writing much so how about some interesting kanji(s)??<–not sure if there is an s or not in plural kanji….

木 -ki – tree (1 tree) 林 - hayashi – woods (2 tree)森 – mori - forest (3 trees) easy ne?

car – 車 – kuruma electricity – 電 – den  = Train – 電車 – densha

Guest Source – X-Japan members..Got to love the hair. Even with the mohawks, the are all business. They do make some good music though.

<– “we are a big deal”


Music of the Day…since the USA is now fully gripped by the America Idol drama, here’s a taste of something different. In Finland metal music is like “the” music of choice. So when they have American Idol, they don’t do old pop songs, but mostly classic and new metal songs. It’s really cool. This is one of the best Iron Maiden songs behing sung pretty well by a Finnish Idol contestant…Ari Koivunen -singing Iron Maiden’s  “The Evil That Men Do” Take it easy.

LOooooong Day

21 02 2008

 I’m scheduled to work till 10, but I can go home earlier if I don’t have a class at nine which is about half the time. Today I attempted to leave at 9, but the manager asked me to stay. I could see in her eyes, she REALLY wanted me to stay so I did. Turns out, I didnt leave till 11:15.  After the prospective student left, the manager just lost it and cried. I hugged her and tried to help as much as I could, but I just think the pressure of being a manager finally broke her. My shoulder was wet when she was done. I’m glad I stayed now because she apparently really needs the support.  Just at the time, it really sucked to stay that late.

As I was biking home, being a little upset that I am getting home 2 hours late, I get an email from coworker telling me how helpful I am. Sometimes life throws you a bone to remind you that you are lucky. And I am.

I called party girl today and this time she answered! Since she knows very little english… the phone call was shaky, but I did get to ask for her email, so I sent her the email that was used in a previous Japanese of the Day. I will inform the world of her response, via this blog. I can see how forced conversation really does help in learning a language though, because it just makes your head struggle to find the words. There is no better way to get those pathways burned into your mind than pressure.

Japanese of the Day Time!

One student brought their DS and I got to play Mario vs. Sonic Olympics. Their were a few interesting differences to the American version of the Mario franchise. At least to me. Probably boring to you haha.

#1 Bowser…. is just…………..Koopa(クッパ)??? Weird.  To me, a koopa is…

 #2 Toad… is…….Kinopio(キノピオ)???? Pinocchio but not….<–“Who me?”

# Wart … is Mamu(マムー)??  I wonder what the translaters were thinking.. Mamu doesn’t sound menacing enough?

Weird… ne?

Music of the Day….Koji Kondo – ” Mario Theme” Played by Zack Kim on two guitars! Crazy.

Hey Hey Hey

20 02 2008

Hey. Me again. Nothing really of note going on. I called that girl that put her number in my phone during the party, but no answer….and no answering machine… sensing rejection?? I guess I will try tomorrow. I was nervous becuase she doesn’t speak hardly any English, but thats the point so I had to be a big boy and just do it. Turned out to be nothing to worry about, but I will tell you how tomorrow goes.

Today I did my routine where I don’t eat AT ALL during the day, then eat a huge dinner. I know thats like bad for you on many many levels, but it feels good sometimes. Like you get a food high. Back home I would not eat one day.. then the next day get two big macs and just enjoy. You can almost feel your veins get energized or something. I understand how bad that is for you, but I don’t know, its fun sometimes. I’ve lost a lot of weight since I’ve been here, so gaining weight won’t be a big deal. Anyone else do this?  Or some other weird thing?

I recently bought the DS Game..Kanji Sonomama DS Rakubiki Jiten. My two day review…. It’s really helpful. At first getting through the Japanese menus is tough, but once that is done its very useful. When you put in a Kanji it attempts to guess which one you wrote. If it was incorrect, it gives you 9 alternatives. Usually the one you want is in those nine. Stroke order IS IMPORTANT. Sometimes it has a hard time figuring out simple kanji if you do the wrong stroke order. Personally I think that is a good thing, becuase it forces you to learn the correct order, but I understand how some might think that is lame. I still haven’t figured out everything, but so far its well worth the 40 or so bucks I bought it for. I took a picture of all the Kanji in my room that I didn’t know, and just figured it all out. Not sure how much I will remember, but at least now there is nothing in my room I don’t understand. First my room, next THE WORLD.

Japanese of the Day…

Well that email I wrote for the lady… turns out I just had her number not email, so it was all for naught. But still a good learning experience.

I’ve been studying Kanji a lot recently and attempting to write with it more. It is difficult though. With each kanji you have to learn at least three things, 1# Kanji itself. 2# On- reading 3# Kun – reading. 4# Compound Readings…

For examply let’s do an easy one…..  日

On-reading nichi, jitsu
Kun-reading hi, bi, ka
Meanings  sun, day, Japan, Sunday

9 bits of information from 4 strokes. Tons of compounds. That’s a bitch isn’t it?

Today’s esteemed guest source Ichiro, Thoughts?

 <– ” Your struggle is my pleasure.. bitch. I own the five o’clock shadow”

Music of the Day….Primal Fear – “Face the Emptiness” Sometimes no matter what you do, you just got to face shit in life. That’s what this song says, using guitars and drums to enhance the message.

There is no doubt that you are done
The story ends not yet begun
Come on and face the emptiness
There is no way to hide away
You cannot run you have to stay
Stand still and watch
The rain fall down

Sweet Party

18 02 2008

Last night party was really a good time. I was very fortunate to meet the guy that invited me. It was 90% foreigners, but it was still good because I met a lot of cool people from this town. No more going to the next city 30 minutes away to party. Also less Sunday nights at home. It was cool to hear everyone stories, reasons for coming, and general thoughts on the country. The kind of people that uproot themselves and go to another country are usually cool people. Got a little confidence about my japanese ability since I was one of the best speakers here. Of course then I talked to someone that had been here for 9 years, and listened to her talk to someone in Japanese and she was like at a native level. I know I know shes been here 9 years, but if you regularly read this blog you know I only focus on what I can’t have!!

I did meet a Japanese girl that was very cool. Not hot persay, but cute. She was very excited to be talking to a foreigner that makes it easier as well. Her english level was perfect, meaning almost none but just enough that I can usually explain a word and she will understand it. She put her number in my phone herself which was nice as well, no work needed lol. I definitly will try to hang out with her again, just for the language exchange if nothing else.

So for my japanese of the day, I will attempt to create a text message saying we should meet this week, here goes nothing.

 First is the draft before sending to my Japanese teacher. The following will be the her corrected version. Let’s see how much it gets changed! I know seems like not much game, but its difficult in a different fucking language.

This is James from the party on saturday. I had a lot of fun! We should meet again sometime. Next weekend we should get something to eat. I work until 10 everyday, what about oyu?  What is the best restaurant in town? Get back to me…

Music of the Day..Glay – ” However” This guys just makes solid overdramatic music… my favorite kind!

Party Hard..

17 02 2008

SO eating at my favorite restaurant in Japan, Coco Curry House, I met another foreigner. He was nice enough to ask for my number and said he would let me know about anything thats going on in this town. So today I got an email saying there is a party tonite! Sooo could be cool. I won’t know anyone which is always a little tough in the beggining, but I could meet some cool people so it should be a good time. Full report tomorrow. So far today I have studied a lot, made a huge lunch, and laundry. (<– that sounds like a japanese of the day topic)

Earlier today this sweet japanese game show was on. It was a test of kanji stroke order. I think it was split into families but I’m not sure so maybe the it was Kanji Family Feud. Nothing much happened when they were wrong except for fake smoke blowing into their face. That could possibly choke someone someday I guess. The accuracy rate was probably 50%. You learn stroke in order throughout school here in Japan, but remember we (we native english speakers) learned the write way to write letters as well in Elementary School, but most of us don’t. THe cool thing was it was very everyday kanji like station and mother. But it’s tough to get those stroke orders correct. There is a pattern that runs through the writing of every kanji but of course there are irregularities. Here’s an example of an everyday one they fucked up..station (eki). There are endless ways to write this.. but only ONE truly correct way….

I found this semi-interesting website that quickly stole 30 minutes of my life for no apparent reason. I like cats but still it doesn’t seem like this website should be that interesting. Nonethless, I spent 30 minutes looking and the best pic I could find was..
funny pictures
moar humorous pics

So work is getting a little more…. work like. Which I guess is no reason to bitch, but I do find myself doing more actual work than a month ago. The manager fucking knows nothing.. but I also know nothing. TO solve a problem sometimes I pretend I know how to do something just so she stops worrying. Shes like a dog or something. She needs attention and she gets soooo excited at the smallest coincedences and sooo down at the smallest of problems. My nickname (that I only use with coworker) is Hachiko. Yeah that Hachiko. I know it takes time to get used to a job, but jsut this transitional period is a little difficult. And takes away from my study time which puts me in a bad mood as well. Basically I turned this paragraph into a bitching session lol.crying 

Japanese of the Day…. Let’s go back to an earlier paragraph… I’ll take out “So Far” since I don’t know how to say that in Japanese lol…

So far today I have studied a lot, made a huge lunch, and laundry.



Kyo watashi wa takusan benkyou shite, ooki na ohiru-gohan wo ryouri shite, sentaku shita.

I am 99% percent sure something is wrong in that sentence. I’ll take it to my lesson tommorrow to get my teacher to check it. Damn I’m dedicated to you guys.

Guest Source.. Thoughts??

nami tamaki <–Nami – ” You definitly fucked up somewhere in that sentence… bitch”

Music of the Day…Primal Fear (again) – “Everytime it Rains” This video is funny because the guest vocalist(Simone Simons of Epica) is the total subject of this video because… well…. she’s hot. I’ve met her twice, if by meet you mean been in the front row of her bands concert and high fived her lol. But it was still awesome. Rock Out.

 Goodnight room. Goodnight moon. Goodnight cow jumping over the moon. Goodnight light. Goodnight Simone….