Monday, August 27, 2012

My Hooker Neighbor

For some weeks, I’ve been having a prostitute as a neighbor on the same floor (Unit 305). Working at home on most days, I can notice people’s coming and going without making any effort. I can also hear the sex noise she makes. She seems to be having brisk business here. Should I complain to the management company or should I report her to the police? Stupid.

Tuesday afternoon, when I was reading The Secret Lives of Somerset Maugham with my neck and head supported by the pillow quite comfortably, I sprained my upper back. I only felt a slight pain. The pain from the neck to the upper back became unbearable on Wednesday and I even felt some numbness in my left arm. I couldn’t sleep because no matter to which direction I turned, a severe sensation ran through the left side of my upper body. Now, the pain is not that severe because of pain killer tablets, “Ammeltz,” stretching and exercise, but I’m still feeling it. It makes typing tough work.

On Sunday night of 19th, I met SM for the first time in a decade or more. We met of course at CC where I first met. I really enjoyed this meeting with her.

Friday, August 17, 2012

The "Sugge'e" Man

For the three weeks until 20 July I was with the “sugge’e” man again.  During the weeks I had a chance to have dinner with him alone, where he disclosed sincerely to me some parts of his working history and how he had been feeling about the training sessions which were the objective of his two visits here. I don’t know what induced him to have honest talk with me, but after the dinner I started somehow feeling as if he were my younger brother who does not know how to behave as the situation requires him and who causes unnecessary annoyance to all around him. He said, “I tend to create enemies.” I don’t think I managed to give any sensible advice to him, but I believe I discerned his inner thinking. I do understand the kind of frustration he has while he was here. The man is still young. I hope he will become confident enough with his new job and not forget what humility can do for him. I wish him all the best.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Disappointing "Dreaming in Chinese"

"Dreaming in Chinese" was a big disappointment to me. I decided to read the book because the author is a linguist and, perhaps more importantly, the wife of James Fallows of the Atlantic, who, along with Chalmers Johnson, created quite a stir as a revisionist on Japan issues in the late 1980s. (I believe he was not criticizing Japan, but rather lamenting the way the US was going then.) The book has some linguistic perspective but to me it contains very few things that are new. Before China, she had stayed for a few years in Japan too, and the book tells me that she had learned almost nothing about similarities between the Japanese and Chinese languages. She mentions difficulties she encountered on Japanese honorifics but nothing about Chinese characters that the Japanese use. Does it mean she didn’t notice Chinese characters used in Japanese or she just ignored them. If she had been more attentive on this, she wouldn’t have told us as surprises such things that are so commonplace to me or us.  Well, she probably wrote the book for the audience not like me.