When was the moment you knew you were “grown up”?

Summer’s cloud is sometime shown as a metaphor of growing here in Japan. It expands quickly and the summer is the best season for students shine in each fields. Today’s question is “When was the moment you knew you were ‘grown up’?” Actually, I cannot say anything about this question. I’m still so childish in a way, and so old in a way.

There was a time everything seems new to me. There was a time everything was unknown. I couldn’t imagine how do I feel when I travel in New York, be in a relation ship with a cute girl and walking with drinking a cheap beer can in a foreign country through the night. But, by accumulating these kinds of experiences in my life, I found myself feeling a bit bored against my life. Or, maybe this is because I live in a country side which is totally unlike to Tokyo kinds of place.

I’m afraid of becoming a boring person by growing up. Becoming matured sometimes can work in a negative way. Grown up can mean stopping growing. There are words “developed country” and “developing country”. Perhaps I live in the latter country now, but I sometimes dream if I could live in the atmosphere in a developing country where everyones think tomorrow is the better day like I felt in Vietnam 10 years ago. I want to be grown up someday, but I never want to be grown up in the future.

Thank you very much for reading the article. I would prefer your comments or some other topic requests for me to write. Please write a comment or give me an email through contact page.

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Analysis of Japanese Song Lyrics: “水平線(Suiheisen: horizontal line)” by backnumber

Hello everyone. It is terribly hot these days in Japan. I’m OK because I live in the northern part of Japan, but if you live in Tokyo, the temperature can kill you. Every person seems like soft-boiled people in Tokyo when I visited a week ago and of course including me though. The funniest and confusing scene I saw in Tokyo was everyone wore masks even in the station in outside. WHY JAPANESE PEOPLE…? Then I thought they will die soon due to not COVID but heatstroke.

Anyways, recently I’ve received an email of inquiry. Since I could hardly have received such email so far, I was so happy by receiving email(you can send me from the “contact” page in the menu). Then I was so happy that I asked the person what do you want me to write about in this blog. Then the person kindly suggested me that the analysis of Japanese song lyrics can be a good topic since the person feel something important can be lost through Google translating.

Then I thought, that would be great! And the person said “Perhaps some of back number’s would be great!” Great! I love back number too! So, let’s start with the latest hit song: Suiheisen!

“Suiheisen” is loved by many people especially by Japanese High schoolers.

Listing to the song, we can feel some sad and happy, such mixed feelings. But to me, a sad atmosphere outweighs the positive one. Watching the MV, a Japanese female high school student throw everything away and walk into the sea, I couldn’t understand what the MV wants to describe. Bullying or something? I thought. However, the song was actually dedicated a certain kind of people. You can check the caption by the artist just down below the video page.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqEr3P78fz8&ab_channel=backnumber

Here is my brief translation.

The spreading of COVID-19 gave a huge impact on our daily lives, and we were forced to have had a tough decisions as a back number. And then, Inter-High School Competition (High School national tournament for sports clubs) has canceled for the first time of its long history, and some high school students who strived for holding the tournament gave a letter to us. Mr. Shimizu, who worked hard for the tournament of track and field when he was a high school student, realized that the tournament was supposed to be held in his home town Gunma prefecture, and their band’s song “SISTER” should have been played in the opening ceremony, and then he tried to do something for them and suddenly he created the song “Suihensen” We would like to publish this song today of October 18th, when the opening ceremony of the tournament should have been held.

Then, everything made sense to me. That’s why the song is such a moving song.

Here is a song lyrics in English and Japanese. The song lyrics are so deep to get simply for even Japanese. The words are simple though, the combinations are so poetic that it can be understood easily. Absolutely, the song is a kind of song that the interpretation can be dedicated by each of us, but mainly the core of the song is to embrace the sadness or darkness in our lives. Here is my translation of the chorus part, which is very difficult to translate and understand.

水平線が光る朝に In the morning when the horizon shines
あなたの希望が崩れ落ちて Your hopes collapse into pieces
風に飛ばされる欠片に While the broken pieces are blown with wind
誰かが綺麗と呟いてる Someone is saying those pieces are beautiful
悲しい声で歌いながら Singing with a sad voice
いつしか海に流れ着いて 光って Those pieces would reach the ocean and shine someday
あなたはそれを見るでしょう You would see it
あなたはそれを見るでしょう You would see it

Above all, my analysis of this song is that this is a kind of a fight song for the people who somehow disappointed deeply with something in their life. Generally speaking, we don’t say it’s beautiful when somebody is collapsing, but the song seems to say such kind of things. In short, as long as we live, we face many kinds of difficulties and sometimes we overcome or lose or collapse. However, as long as we live, the song would tell us our lives are still dazzling like sea glasses found in the sea shore.

Thank you very much for reading the article. I would prefer your comments or some other topic requests for me to write. Please write a comment or give me an email through contact page.

I’m Finally Back!

About three months of being absent, I could finally come back to this site. What happened in these months? Who cares. I was just spending so lazy time that I couldn’t even remember how to log in this site and have many troubled time due to my laziness. However and fortunately, I could come back now. The theme is “REBORN” now. I’d like to write about anything that I think worth to write and what I want to write!

https://www.instagram.com/official_upsidedown/

by the way, this is my new instagram account with my sweetheart living in Tokyo. We live in the total opposite sites in Japan. So, you know, upsidedown. This account is our challenge to make our dreams come true. If you could follow us, you would glimpse interesting and humorous way of our living in this era. Thank you for reading!

Thank you very much for reading the article. I would prefer your comments or some other topic requests for me to write. Please write a comment or give me an email through contact page.

Rocket Start Type vs. Last Spurt Type

End of the fiscal year makes us really busy and stressed out. There are so many things left to be done. Murderous March is literally killing us in Japan. March is also known for the season of hay fever, so the creativity of Japanese really drop seriously in this season.

We all tend to think like “why should I do this with crying… I should’ve done this much more earlier” in this time. So, how can we change this kind of regrets? There is a “Parkinson’s law”. Let me quote from Wikipedia.

Parkinson’s law is the adage that “work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.”[1] It is sometimes applied to the growth of bureaucracy in an organization, but can be applicable to all forms of work.

In other words, we tend to put off our works as much as we can. When you asked a work and it’s deadline is April 1st, you would try to check if it’s 16:45 or 23:59. Then, you suddenly realize it’s Thursday, you would offer him/her alternative deadline of Friday 23:59. Moreover you could think like he/she cannot check the work on Friday night, so how about April 4th? Or like that.

The most of us, sadly, are such kind of type of people. We don’t want to work hard naturally. A book author once called this kind of people “las spurt type person”. Hmm… maybe so. And he also says, if you really want to be a person who will do things as soon as possible, you should become a “rocket start person”. This is the person who will do a 80% of work immediately and try to do 20% in the rest of time until the real deadline.

Do you want to change? No pain, no gain.

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How To Be A Real Writer (Novelist) In Japan?

Unlike to the other states, it is winning prizes with authority that you need to to be a real writer in Japan. Of course you can be an essay writer if you are famous in some territories or genres. However, it seems necessary for you to win an important literature prize in Japan if you really want to be a fictional writer.

There are several important literature prizes. The most famous ones are “Akutagawa Prize” and “Naoki Prize”. Former prize is thought to be the most important literature prize for pure literature, and the latter is for entertainment literature in Japan. These are the most important prizes so that you could be immediately become famous when you win the prize.

As for the Akutagawa Prize, you can receive a special watch and 1,000,000 yen as an option. Once you win the prize, everyone would call you as Akutagawa Prize winning author or like that. I’m fond of reading the prize laureate fictions, but I have no idea how can you get the prize. The winners are people from very young to very old. When you really get the literature and describe with a solid fictional world, maybe you would receive the prize.

It’s one of my foolish dream though. I hope someday I can win it.

Thank you very much for reading the article. I would prefer your comments or some other topic requests for me to write. Please write a comment or give me an email through contact page.

Alcohol

There is a day when you want to cry with no specific reasons. However, the older you get, the less you can cry easily. Then, the solution for it would be drinking alcohol. Generally speaking, drinking is thought to be as one of a stupid thing. However, I wonder it would have great meaning in our life.

Drinking Alcohol makes me be more childish, or simple to our honesty. Therefore, sometimes I try to drink to become foolish and stupid enough to to laugh a lot and cry a lot. In terms of that, drinking is a great thing as long as you don’t drink it too much or addicted.

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Sleep well and live well

How long do you need to charge fully yourself? I think I need about 8 hours. However, these days,y sleeping time is around 6 hours. I think it’s not good to keep my heath, so I would like to go to bed early today. Actually, today was really tiring day. We argued much and felt really sad. I’d like to accept that we have such days sometimes. Good night.

Yona Yona Dance

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Big Mac calls me

“Big Mac Set” in Japan

Never forget the time when I knew the word “Big Mac” for the first time in my life. I was 9 or 10 years old at that time. The city where I lived was the whole world, and everyday was full of new things and findings. My grandparents were so fine that they even hang me out together. My grandma often scolded me with tiny things (wearing T shirts in a cold day made her mad), but the sizes she cooked was my favorite forever.

The day when I know Big Mac was the day when I went to see a movie with my friend. The name of the movie is gone, but exact that time, he introduced me a story about NBA players. He was so fond of Disney, NBA or such American cultures. So, he said to me, “Have you eaten Big Mac already? NBA players often goes to McDonald’s after their games and try to eat Big Mac with team members. Since I knew it, I’m a huge fan of Big Mac. So, have you tried already?” He asked. I was so naïve then, I had eaten just plain hamburger or double cheeseburger. Then I though, alright, let me try it.

From that day, my life has changed. Big Mac was so delicious that perhaps I have been eating about 400 Big Macs before. I even eat it in the US, UK, South Korea, and Singapore. The truth is that you can enjoy the same taste wherever you are. That is Big Mac aka global Big Mac. I’m still falling love with Big Mac. No matter how you experience stressed out feeling, just take a bite at it, and you can only concentrate on Big Mac. Then, problem solved. Just drink a coke and all you can think of is when you would eat French fries next.

Thank you very much for reading the article. I would prefer your comments or some other topic requests for me to write. Please write a comment or give me an email through contact page.

What should we see in this pandemic to endemic moment

Everything has dark side and bright side. One side is often thought to be as justice, and another thought to be the opposite. You have to point out what’s wrong when students are talking face to face during lunch time. Right. The situation is best to get Covid-19. However, by such restrictions, the suicidal rate among young generations are spring these days. Cause seems apparent that there are hardly no fun things in school without forced studying which will never be restricted. I have huge doubt on today’s education policy in Japan. I am honestly so frustrated on this topic. Why the government can’t say take it easy to students, and try to restrict more than ever unlike to Britain or France which has gradually lessen their restrictions. I think it’s so wrong. Don’t kill youngsters and don’t deprive their happiness or rights to talk without barriers.

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A Perfect Timing for Reading Books in My Busy Daily Life

There are so many books to read in my house

Reading books. When you hear this phrase, what would be your reaction? Actually, my reaction was differ from when I was a teenager. I thought reading books or new paper and watching NHK (Japanese kind of BBC) are worst boring thing in my life at that time, and I simply couldn’t believe why adults are enough to be bare with such super boring look things. For instance, each letters in both books and newspapers are shockingly small for me at that time, and any TV program of NHK looked so serious that I unconsciously thought the personalities were AI robots (AI could do better, actually. Then I thought).

Time passes, and people can really change. One of the great meaning of education is sometimes described as this “changing”. Now I really owe my professors who have taught me because thanks to them, I changed so much, and now I can’t imagine the life without reading books (but watching NHK still…) . In my opinion, the first ten books you try to read will the hardest experience in your book life. The way to finish your book seems climbing Mt. Fuji or Everest. But somehow, you bare with reading, reading and reading. At last, when you finish reading 10th or 9th books, you would realize, “I had totally misunderstood about what reading books is!”.

A philosopher once said, “Ultimately, reading books means reading yourself”. And I totally agree with it. By improving your reading skill, your skill to live with clear thoughts or meaning would improve too. You can get words that can describe or explain your confused imagery of your mind. Everyone must be translator in terms of translating your own heart into your mother language. So, yeah, reading books is great. And this is thought to be one of the best my life changing event so far.

Since I was a university student (my major was English Literature), I read a lot from the time (actually not that much though…). However, after becoming a high school teacher, I couldn’t easily find the time to read, and had been frustrated about that. But now I became 29 and I could get the pace of work, the frequency of rearranging my room has much decreased for now. And I could finally find the best timing for reading books in my daily life.

First is after a supper. You feel full stomach and feel dull to wash the dishes, than I put them in the kitchen sink, and put some water in the dish. Then, you can start reading books with satisfaction. Sometimes it lasts for 30 minutes to read, or 2 hours to read.

Second is while talking bath. Soaking half of the body in warm water, and reading with drowsy feelings. My ideal time is for 20 to 30 minutes because you would feel really dizzy at that time.

Third is just before sleeping. With a warm light of your bedside lamp, you can read any books and that would definitely makes you fall asleep within 15 min.

However, sometimes you find yourself so tired in a weekdays and maybe you would have many schedules to do for weekdays. So, for such people like me, the true best timing for reading is Saturday and Sunday. Cancel any schedules and let’s read for all day. You could read 3 books if you really love to read in a day. For somebody, only Saturday and Sunday seems a bit sad and not enough. But, man, the desire for reading would rather decreased if you are free everyday, I think for myself.

Anyway, thank you for reading as usual, and have a great reading life.