The Social Blindness of Anime Fandom

Anime fans around the world hold more power than they might imagine.  They are spending big money and Japan is raking in.  As potential movers and shakers in the world of popular culture, what then should these fans do with their strong influence?  Ask for more and better quality anime? It seems so. Recently I … Continue reading The Social Blindness of Anime Fandom


The Proper (Japanese) Way: PART II

"The Proper (Japanese) Way" is the manner by which this or that action is to be effectively carried out in Japanese social contexts.  The prescribed method is most often an aesthetic etiquette that sometimes has practical applications in that it can facilitate the action being accomplished efficiently well or "lean" as they say in business environments. … Continue reading The Proper (Japanese) Way: PART II

My One-Eyed Genie

I positioned the daruma in the most prominent spot on my makeshift dresser top shrine. I had purchased the three-inch papier-mâché roly-poly, the smallest among several available versions, for a paltry 300 yen from a temple near Yuki’s house. Apparently it was a Buddhist talisman capable of granting one wish. My Japanese sister had told … Continue reading My One-Eyed Genie

The Minimalist’s Last Frontier: The Fridge

Normally talk of minimalism involves belongings-- smaller homes, fewer knicknacks, functional wardrobes and the like, but rarely does it mention food and the fridge.  Being frugal at the grocery store really isn't anything new. Many of our parents or grandparents were actually masters.  It seems, however, that convenience has made serious food management an all … Continue reading The Minimalist’s Last Frontier: The Fridge

The Curious Old Country Women of Japan

Nakagawa-san was one of the “bent people.”  When she stood the upper part of her body was parallel to the floor.  And when she walked you generally could not see her face.  To navigate her small world, Nakagawa-san had to periodically stop, lean on her staff, and tilt her neck backwards. She was a perfect … Continue reading The Curious Old Country Women of Japan