Friday, January 28, 2011

Brief Thoughts

Mr. Obama, its not a Sputnik. 

And the NYT doesn't like Japan today, I left a little comment on their "In Japan, Young Face Generational Roadblocks" article. It wasn't a terrible article but it has the usual NYT feel aimed at Japan - by that I mean amateurish and predictable. I usually would hope better from probably the world's most important (maybe) newspaper.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Its not a Sputnik.

I just don't get it. I mean, I totally get it but it doesn't make it any better.

Its not Sputnik. I am talking about how everything involved with China that seems somewhat threatening to American dominance is suddenly of Sputnik caliber. I understand the metaphor. Sputnik served as a call to action that solidified American will to stand up and compete with the Soviet Union. The massive existential threat to the free world for many decades.

China is not the Soviet Union. Chinese development is not a satellite. Chinese students are also not satellites. You can make the logical leap with the metaphor, but why would you want to make that metaphor? Its like, remember the Cold War? Remember all the fear? Let's do that again. Let's have that be our rallying cry!

Live in fear of the eastern menace! Yar!

Give me a break, first it started (ok, it actually started a long time ago if you read my other Sputnik entry, but with a different country) with the PISA results, carried on to some articles and opinion columns in the NYT and now it happens again in an article talking about similarities between China-US economic issues now and US-Japan economic issues of over 20 years ago.

What is just as tasteless in the recent NYT article is entitled "Maybe Japan Was Just a Warm-Up to the Rivalry with China" . That is all Japan was, a warm-up to some other threat in the East. At the end of the article it brings the ridiculous Sputnik analogy up again. It just oozes of nationalist, confrontational rhetoric. We are in a battle or match and we needed to warm-up. But now we are ready to hit the field and crack some skulls. Booya.

I make you feel bad...

I went into Starbucks today, got a mocha and sat down in a big poofy blue chair. Next to me were these two girls who were probably in high school. Upon sitting down, there is a quick silence (I'm listening to my iPod at the time) and then some giggling. One of the girls said to the other - ”もっと英語を勉強したらいいねー” or something like that, which translates to "It would have been nice if I studied English more". 

I don't know what we would have talked about in pretend 'her having studied more English world' but I'm glad when I sit next down to random people I immediately make them feel insufficient. Great.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Failing at Food

I'm not a total failure at food/cooking, but I am far from a success.

Tonight's dinner was not terrible, but the slightly edible kinoko rice from yesterday was even more so slightly edible today. Oh well. I blame my rice cooker, maybe.

In general I find it slightly difficult to make food for myself alone. At least I know my Nanban Chicken is still pretty baller...

I got back from a long vacation, maybe I'll talk about it. But today and yesterday I felt violently thrust back into my normal life and it has been a bit jarring and honestly kind of lonely. But, I still want to keep on for awhile despite this sudden depression.