What was the best and the worst times in your life?
A stranger gave me his umbrella during a day when the rain was very heavy. I was wearing all white and my hair was already soaked. And another time when another stranger yelled at me, "YOU ARE BEAUTIFUUUUL" while I was walking in my yukata and ready to pass out after a long morning in the Kyoto summer heat. Both times I was so worried and wasn't enjoying my time. But when that man gave me his umbrella or the man that yelled at me, I felt hope and like I wasn't alone. Someone else knew I was there and helped me in some way. They went out of their way to do something. I'll never forget these memories.
Worst time. There's many. I would say in high school and when my dog passed away.
What is the biggest misconception about you?
I have no idea. I get along with a lot of people. If I don't get along with them, I just ignore them.
How do you want to be remembered?
If/When I have kids in the future, I want them to remember my love and wisdom to them. I don't have that right now, so I don't want to be remembered.
Some small differences I noticed since last time. Figured I would make a mini list. Some I have already know, but maybe other people don't, so I've mentioned them anyway. *^^*
Going out to drink.
In Japan there is a lot more eating involved and you would usually go to an Izakaya, verses in the states it involves drinking and probably just that (if you are going to a pub or like a bar. Irish pubs are my favorite. ^^ Country bars? Not so much . . . ). Oh! And talking super loud! That's the best part! Or if you are going to a sports bar, then you're probably a guy (girls come too but it's mostly guys) talking with other guys about the american football game on the 10 TV they provide, or a baseball game, and then cheering or booing all together.
I've only been to one Izayaka so far. I SAW another one, but it seemed like that theme: chatting it up with someone while you drink and eat. There's food in US pubs and bars but it's mostly fried food or something to eat really quick (to supplement the drink). In Puerto Rico, it's like drinking and dancing, and it's common to bar hop since there can be like 10 bars all on the same street.
After the day is done
In Japan: go out. Izakaya or just something you and your friends like. In US: go home, go sleep. 'Nuff said.
This one really depends on the person I believe, no matter where you are. For me, heat is my friend. No. Change that. Heat is my lover essentially. I LOVE HEAT! My curly hair looks amazing and I don't need much clothes (don't need them), and I'm all prepared to have the sun soak my skin in the warmness and bake like a fish. Give me 15 minutes and I have already tanned. Most people complain about it. "Oh my gosh it's so hot!!!! I can't deal with this."
In Japan: It's not that bad since most people ignore your presence or are reading like. . . . a hentai manga (porno looking-manga) and he treats it as if he's reading the newspaper or something. Nobody looks you in the eye, so it's like being in a small closet full of coats. Coats that just finished work and probably are elbowing you all over the place. People in US just don't encounter this at all. They're even very cautious of standing too close to you in the train (if you do stand).
Japan: (Tokyo) People stand on the left side. LITERALLY they will stand there. I barely saw anyone walking up an escalator. (Kyoto) People stand on the right side. You'll see people walking too. US: you stand on the right side. people are always walking on the left side. it's an escalator . . .you become impatient when you can just walk. . .
Japan: (Tokyo) (I'm not sure about other places yet.) You park your car with the tail inside the parking space first. Pretty much all the time. US: both ways to park are used, although parking with the front and not the tail seems to be the more popular choice.
US: Hardly any. Always inside buildings and limited choices (junk food or soda, sometimes other drinks). Pay for it, and walk away. Maybe start drinking or eating on your way walking to wherever you're gonna go. Always inside a building. Japan: All kinds of stuff! Once I saw a banana vending machine. You WILL see them everywhere. Even on a mountain, on the side of a temple. It's gonna be there. Many times you'll see someone just drinking whatever they bought at the side of that vending machine. Everywhere (inside buildings, and the most random street in the middle of rice fields you can think of).
US: they're everywhere. But there's a lack of recycle bins. . . Japan: they're hard to find. you will carry your own trash with you, and many times you'll just have to wait until you're at a bathroom, or wait until you go back home.
US: they're huge and they even provide "LARGE PRINT". they can be supper thick or thin, and almost always are bigger than your hand. Japan: almost always about the size of your hand and thin. I haven't seen any japanese novel that is thick thus far (comparing with US novels). And you can choose to have a paper wrapping around the cover if you pay for it so no one knows what you are reading.
US: having short-shorts or mini-skirts, pants, whatever that are waaayyy too high can be considered revealing. Some people also feel younger girls these days wear tops that are too tight and/or reveal their breasts too much. Japan and South Korea: it's ok to wear that mini-skirt or high shorts, but apparently showing the slightest cleavage is a big no no.
Speakin' In Subways
US: it's ok to talk in the train or in a subway or in a bus. There are some designated times when within the day where people expect you to stay quiet (like if you are in a train full of working people at 7am, you shouldn't really talk that much), but as long as you are not totally loud and annoying EVERYONE it's totally ok to talk (whether the person is there with you or you are talking on the phone). Japan: it's better to just not talk. If someone calls you, you should quietly whisper to them that you're on the train and will call them later (while covering your mouth. . . .yea. . .like I REALLY didn't see you talking :P). Sometimes you can, but it's not usual.
This goes for every country. We love it when a foreigner takes the time to learn "our" language, and it's looked as something polite and generous. Not doing so and expecting everyone to speak the foreigners language is just rude, no matter what country you are. So learn the language! Don't be a biatch. :P
US: people hide it, or at least think they are hiding it. (they REALLY try to hide the fact that they are staring at some girl or just random stranger.) Japan: depending where you are (and who you are), most people won't hide it. For example, if you're in Kyoto and you're a foreigner, people won't hide the fact that they're staring at you like the new animal in the zoo. Say cheese! :D But usually if you're a girl and a guy is staring at you, they try to hide it (but not as much as in US). Puerto Rico and Mexico: if you are a girl, you will be stared at! And men have no shame in letting YOU AND EVERYONE ELSE know that they are staring at you! Seriously, no joke. Don't feel uncomfortable. Think of it as you are the goddess walking on this earth whose beauty can only be admired by everyone. :P On the other hand, if you are a foreigner, nobody really cares. Unless it's like a little kid and they're thinking "omygosh it's an american!!!! they're so tall!!! why are they so tall?!!". But they know not to shout this in the air for everyone to hear.
Yes, driers. Dryers? Driers? Hahahaha. US: people use them to dry pretty much everything. Puerto Rico: depends on the family, but we almost always hang up our clothes to dry. You'll probably use a drier just to dry bed covers or something like towels. Japan: no driers.
I read this post and there were 2 things that stuck out to me. 1) I do believe Americans emphasize "equality" in relationships. 2) Japan as a matriarchial society.
1) There is no equality in any relationship. In fact, the woman has more power than the guy in any relationship. It just wouldn't work the other way around. In other words, her happiness comes first. If she's happy, then your life will be happy. Yea he should be happy too and they should both consider each others feelings but you know that you should just say yes to what she says. :P
So it's not equality.
It's like a balance beam.
Sometimes she shows her strengths and other times he is allowed to show his strengths by her. ^^
2) Japan to me doesn't seem like a matriarchial society. To my understanding, it's still patriarchial. I'm not serving you a drink because I'm a girl. I'll serve you a drink when you need it but out of my kindness. And don't expect me to do it for you all the time. Womens' names are changed in marriage. Children only receive their fathers last name. Women don't have many advancing opportunities at work compared to men.
There isn't sufficient support for day-care centers. Maternity leave is like one of the worsts I have ever heard. I'm actually really worried that if I have kids in Japan. . . . and cuz I don't have my family around me I can't depend on my brother to babysit for me, so . . . . . . .what do I do? >_<
If something goes wrong with your child, some women will still comment on how it was the mothers fault. Daughters tend to be spoiled or "very protected", if you want to call it that, verses sons are treated differently. (To me it looks like spoiled.) Many women may feel scared to yell for help when some creepy stranger is feeling up their skirt in a crowded train. (Don't deny it. You know it happens.)
Ghosts tend to be women (reflected on how badly they have been treated in their living life). There is an ideal age range to get married that is younger compared to western standards of when a woman "should"* marry. (Men tend to prefer younger women.)
* Using the word 'should' with caution.
Then again I'm Puerto Rican and we are VERY matriarchial so my views are not even the same as American standards.
I remember when I went back to US after 2010, and thought this same thing. People will actually not just point you the way to what you want to find but also WALK and SHOW you where it is. Verses in US, well, you're lucky if you find even one person willing to do I dunno . . . their job in customer assistance. There's been plenty of times where I find employees chatting it on with a customer that isn't really there to look for something. (Another reason I don't like shopping with my mom. She pretty much demands me to go look for someone. I would rather just look for it myself.)
In Puerto Rico the customer service is even worse. Employees are ALWAYS TALKING TO EACH OTHER. Like a full on conversation. But I don't really care about this. It's your job as the customer to interrupt their conversation and start asking them what it is you want to get.
One thing I do like about shopping for shoes in US is how the shoes (and all the sizes available) are displayed right under the display shoe. I get annoyed if I have to ask the employee all the time, just to find me the shoe, ask what sizes they have, oh wait, this size is too big or I want to try it in a different color. It's like I'm making them do all this work, and I also don't want to shop WITH them. I just want to do it quick: see the shoe I like, try it on, if it doesn't fit move on, if it does then think a little more.
And I like shoe shopping. :3 So I want to try in different colors. Depending on the shoe, a different size (bigger or smaller) may be better. It goes on much quicker if I have all the shoes in front of me rather than asking the person to go get them while I wait, etc. I felt like that makes the process longer and more about waiting than actually trying on shoes. . .
Read this too. Frankly I don't really care about this topic. I'm only interested in blood types from a scientific perspective, and genetics. Otherwise, I can't really be bothered with it. Interesting, but meeeh, just not interesting ENOUGH to me.
Read this and also thought more or less around the same line as this blogger. You say greetings in Japanese and someone will praise you for it. I understand the whole polite thing but (just my opinion of course) I prefer honesty (in a way where you can tell me and not hurt my feelings or be a total ass about it) rather than politeness. So I always kind of ignore when this does happen to me. When it does happen, I just say "ok" and change the topic. Don't need politeness.
I was reading this and it got me thinking about some of the things I am reading for my class. In the readings, they are actually quite long and take forever to get to the point but it did have some interesting stuff. This one reading was trying to figure out a way to figure out how to raise communicative competence in second-language (aka L2) learners, and just arguing about what does this even mean, how can we measure it, and then finally how can we implement it in ESL classes.
But I was thinking that some of this stuff also depends on what language is being learned and where you teach it. Another reading was talking about a lesson plan where students are instructed to tell stories from their own cultures, share it with a classmate, and then share it with the class (in hopes of figuring out their own cultural identities and how it differs from other people), but then I thought while I really like this plan, it doesn't really work with a group of students that come from the same culture. I mean, you might have like 5 students talking about momotarou.
So what does this have to do with what I read? That now I really really really want to work in a private place rather than public school (of course with experience), cuz then we don't have to always follow not-so-useful-japanese-teachers and can focus more on students who are motivated and want more communication rather than learning what the hell is a relative clause.
Like I talk with my JP classmates (classmates of my JP language class) and also students who took spanish classes, I always say it's totally useless to learn linguistic terms like "transitive and intransitive", "progressive" etc. Yea it's nice to tell the kids what these "things" are, but not to focus on that; focus more on its function and use. Face it. No native learner knows all the grammatical rules of their own language. It's good only for organizing grammar in a textbook and just to let students know what it's called, and that's it. Focus more on what it means and how to use it. :P
Just a small rant for today.
Otherwise I'm still super nervous about my interview on saturday. Need to practice my demo lesson. So far I'm thinking of two options I want to do.
(1) Unsuccessful Applicant of JET
(2) Successful Applicant of JET
(3) Successful Applicant of JET (can read below)
Statement of Purpose – JET Program
My interest in Japan and Japanese language developed when I lived in Switzerland during middle school, where I had a Japanese friend who taught me a few Japanese words (cold, warm, etc.). When my family moved back to the US my parents chose where we lived based on whether or not the local high school offered Japanese. I am very interested in foreign languages, but after four years of studying Japanese it has become my favorite, and my current goal is to become a Japanese-English translator / interpreter.
I am also interested in foreign language acquisition, specifically how languages are taught and what problems students have in learning them. Being an ALT would provide an excellent opportunity to see how English is taught in Japan while at the same time letting me be immersed in Japanese and see Japan. As I said before my goal is to be a translator or interpreter and in order to gain experience towards this end I would, if accepted into the program, hope to switch to the CIR position after a year when I’ve gained experience in spoken Japanese.
In the fourth year language class I took last spring as well as the one I am currently taking we have broken away from textbook Japanese and begun to read actual Japanese texts of varying difficulty. After a semester of this, I now get concrete images when reading in Japanese as opposed to vague ones. I need immersion to increase my vocabulary and to help me converse in Japanese more readily. My Japanese friends say that my spoken Japanese is quite good and have told me that they do not have to dumb down what they are saying when they speak to me.
To be a translator or interpreter one needs to be able to wield the languages without hesitation both written and verbally, and this is one of the main reasons I would like to go to Japan. Having lived in Switzerland and studied French and German there, as well as having seen others studying those languages I have seen the difference that immersion can make and at this point in my study of Japanese the most beneficial thing would be immersion.
For the past three semesters I have met with Japanese exchange students once or twice a week to help them with their homework, reading comprehension as well as to provide them chances to speak English comfortably, without having to worry about any mistakes that are made. These experiences as well as those when I was first learning French and German have made me patient when dealing with others in foreign languages because I am not always able to say exactly what I want to and frequently have to reword what I want to say, and the same applies to those I’m speaking with.
My interest in Japan does not solely revolve around language, however. Through friends who have been to Japan as well as through the classes about Japan that I’ve taken I’ve heard and read quite a bit about various famous temples, shrines, monuments and festivals that I would like to see in person.
If accepted I would hope to increase the understanding of western holidays of those I work with as well as help in their English acquisition. I hope to have a better understanding of Japanese holidays that I’ve read about, see as many of the famous buildings and areas that I’ve read about, get to know Japanese people’s customs and greatly increase my Japanese language abilities.
I'm reading, "Found in Translation: How Languages Shape our Lives and Transforms the World" by Nataly Kelly and Jost Zetzsche.
Some sections are interesting while others are boring to me. But when it started to mention McDonalds and their different menus across the world, I became envious of what is offered in Brazil and France. I wanna eat the banana pie crust thingy!!!!!! I never liked apple pies. I mean they taste good but I prefer BANANAS.
I was talking with my volunteer coworker yesterday about platanos (plantains in English), and how in Brazilian bbq restaurants they serve this friend banana with cinamon and sugar and it's just love in my mouth. So we started talking about all these dishes that had to do with bananas and learned that she loves bananas the same way I do. I told her my bf's mom and sis thought it was funny how many bananas I ate, and she told me how people usually called her monkey (for the same reason). I was thinking in my head, " hmmmm. we should make like . . . a monkey team!".
So that's my story. Watch out for our monkey team in the future! We will rule the world with bananas. Muahahaha!
I'm still practicing, so there still may be some errors.
When I use this ---> ( blah blah ), it means it sounds better in English but it's not said in Japanese because it is already implied. Just like Spanish, Japanese is a high culture language that implies a lot of shit.
What is surprising and popular in love consultations are the large amount of women who misunderstand men even though they are going out with them. Women are under the impression that there is a connection between (us) being the only partner for our boyfriend, and the partner that thinks about the future. In love, this is serious and it becomes a fundamental cause for suffering from him not becoming the person we like.
彼と付き合っていないのに、付き合っていると勘違いしている女性は、年齢や職業とは関係がないようです。一流企業でバリバリと働いていても、アラフォーでも、男性に遊ばれていてそれに気付いていない女性を何人も知っています。一方で、そのような女性に共通する特徴は、恋愛経験が少なく、男性の言葉を鵜呑みにするお人好しが多いということでしょう。 There seems to be no relation with age and occupation when it comes to women who, even though they are not dating, they guess incorrectly that they are dating. Everyone knows a woman who is having a fun time with a man and, moreover, doesn't notice it, even if they are around 40 years old and even if they are working hard at a top company. On the other hand, a common feature of that sort of woman is not that she has little experience in love, but isn't it a the thing of a kind-hearted person who swallows the words of men?
Now, while thinking about this problem, I will teach you a coping method.
First, even in the next sort of situation where you are in a relationship with a guy, there are times when you are not dating.
He is immensely sweet. ２.特別扱いしてくれる。
He treats you special. ３.毎日何度もメールのやりとりや電話をしている。
He calls and exchanges letters back and forth many times everyday. ４.彼の家に出入りしていて、彼の家の鍵も持っている。
You (have access to) go in and out of his house, and also have a key to his house. ５.恒常的に彼と体の関係を持っている
Constantly having a connection between him and his physique. ６.毎週のように、遊園地や旅行など、きちんとしたデートをしている。
Almost every week, you go on real dates such as to the amusement park or (go on) a travel date. ７.彼に「大好き」「大切な人」と言われている。
He says "I like you", and "(You are an) important person (to me)".