Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Reader

David Kross and Kate Winslet in a scene from The Reader

"What we feel isn't important. It's utterly unimportant. The only question is what we do. If people like you don't learn from what happened to people like me, then what the hell is the point of anything?"

So says Professor Rohl (Bruno Gantz) to a young law student named Michael Berg (David Kross) near the middle of The Reader.  Yet it isn't until much later, after Michael has become an adult (and is now played by Ralph Fiennes), after his wife and he have divorced, that he follows his professor's advice, and begins telling his daughter Julia (Hannah Herzsprung) about his affair with Hanna Schmizt (Kate Winslet), and the greatest failing of his youth.

This affair is what begins the movie, as a series of flashbacks experienced by the adult Michael.  When he was fifteen, he felt sick on a bus.  A woman helps him get home after he vomits near an apartment complex.  That woman is Hanna.

He is diagnosed with scarlet fever and spends weeks recovering.  When he is well again, he brings flowers over to the complex, finds out where Hanna lives, and gives them to her as a thank you.  While waiting outside her apartment as she undresses, he peeks through the door and sees her putting on her tights.  She sees him watching her.  He runs home.

The next time he is over, he brings up coal to her apartment in a couple of buckets.  Having dirtied his face and clothes, she draws up a bath for him.  When she drapes a towel over him, she lets it drop, and he discovers that she, too, is naked.

She spends time teaching him different sexual techniques.  Then, one day, she asks him what he is reading in school.  Soon, he is bringing over his school books to read to her before they make love.  During Lady Chatterly's Lover, she mentions that what he is reading is disgusting.  When he stops, she asks, "What are you doing?  Keep reading."

Then, one day, she vanishes.  Michael doesn't meet her again until, as a law student, he attends a trial for S.S. guards.  One of the defendants is Hanna.

Two main themes run through this movie, though at first, neither one is apparent.  The first is learning from the past.  The second is stated most eloquently by Roger Ebert, in his fantastic review of this film.  In it, he writes:

       Many of the critics of "The Reader" seem to believe it is all about 
       Hanna's shameful secret. No, not her past as a Nazi guard. The 
       earlier secret that she essentially became a guard to conceal. 
       Others think the movie is an excuse for soft-core porn disguised 
       as a sermon. Still others say it asks us to pity Hanna. Some 
       complain we don't need yet another "Holocaust  movie." None of 
        them think the movie may have anything to say about them. 
        I believe the movie may be demonstrating a fact of human nature: 
       Most people, most of the time, all over the world, choose to go 
       along. We vote with the tribe.

Indeed, that is the point.  Hanna went along with the killing of three thousand Jews.  Michael goes along with her guilty plea, even though he knows something about her that renders her innocent of the most serious charges.  Both decisions condemn people to fates they don't deserve.  The starker example is what Hanna and her fellow guards do when the Jews are trapped in a burning barn, but is it any less wrong to punish one person unjustly, as it is to punish many?

And now we come back to the quote I started this review with.  Read it again and ask yourself: who was to blame for the Holocaust?  The Nazis?  The Germans?  Or the whole human race?

Some New Features, and A Reminder

Okay, I know I've been writing a lot of entries recently, but this one, like the one for my birthday, is very short.

I've added two new features to my sidebar, just below my profile: Books I Am Currently Reading, and Currently Working On (e.g.. novels, poetry, short stories, etc).  Books written in a gray font are books that I'm currently taking a break from, but haven't finished (they'll tend to be short story collections or other works that don't have a single narrative thread running through them).

Also, I have added some news blogs that I'm following to the sidebar, so be sure to check those out if you're looking for more blogs to follow.

Finally, don't forget to sponsor my friend, who is walking on behalf of the March of Dimes on May 8th!

Monday, April 26, 2010


Movie poster for Atonement, starring James McAvoy and Keira Knightley

How far must one go to atone for a wrong done in childhood?

In 1935 England, a thirteen-year-old girl named Briony Tallis (Saoirse Ronan) misinterprets a couple of encounters she witnesses between Robbie Turner (James McAvoy), a servant, and her sister, Cecilia (Keira Knightley), which--when mixed with adolescent jealousy--culminate in a false accusation that sends Robbie to jail.  Almost five years later, given the choice to stay in jail or enlist in the army, Robbie enlists.  Shipped out to France, he ends up joining the mass evacuation at Dunkirk.  Meanwhile, on the home front, Cecilia and Briony have become nurses.  For Briony, who could have gone to Cambridge, this is part of her atonement for her lie.

The lengths that she goes to in order to give her sister and Robbie the life together that they deserve is the crux of this movie.  Of course, the question remains: is it enough?  Can it ever be enough?  I do not know.  But for an elderly Briony (Vanessa Redgrave), it is the only thing she can do, and so it will have to do.

I did find some of the stylistic techniques used in the beginning of this film, such as the jumps back and forth in time and place (most particularly when Robbie realizes that he gave Briony the wrong letter to give to her sister), called too much attention to themselves as techniques, making me feel as if I were watching a movie, instead of experiencing it.  Also, the sound of a typewriting should never be used in a soundtrack.  Ever.

On the plus side, the acting, though reserved (it is set in England, after all), feels natural.  We can feel the passion under the surface of Cecilia's and Robbie's cool demeanors.  And the look of the film is lush and beautiful, even when the horrors of war--such as wounded soldiers being brought back from the front--slide across the screen.  

As for the climax--well, it culminates as it must.  Here the director, Joe Wright, does not resort to camera trickery, or even scenery, and the result is all the more powerful for it.

Finally, one anachronism: Robbie plays two arias from La Boheme while composing an apology letter to Cecilia, but the particular recording that he plays (with Jussi Bjorling and Victoria de los Angeles in the title roles) would not be released for another twenty-one years.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

It's Party Time!


Saturday, April 24, 2010

A New Beginning?

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
-Eleanor Roosevelt

I kept repeating that quote after I came home tonight from work.  No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.  No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.  No one can make you feel inferior....no one....

I quit my job today.  Usually, when one leaves a job, it is customary to give the company two weeks notice (and in Japan, a whole month).  I have followed this courtesy at all of my jobs...those that allowed me to stay on long enough to do so, that is.

All but this one.

I had taken next week off for U.S. Census training, and since the schedules are done one week previous, I figured now was the best time to quit, since they had already scheduled me out for next week.  I also thought that I had read in the company handbook that during the first ninety days, an employee could quit at any time and for any reason, a power usually reserved for the employer in regards to the employee.  So I quit, effective today.  Unfortunately, I was told that I read that part wrong, and that the penalty is that this company may never hire me back.

I had two main reasons for quitting immediately.  One was that I didn't want to announce my departure, and then have to put up with two weeks of people asking why, of looking at the disappointment in people's faces, of fumbling for an answer that makes my decision clear without placing blame for my departure on any one person.  In other words, I wanted to leave quietly, without people knowing that I was leaving until right before I was gone.  Well, I bungled that, as this immediate departure will probably cause more problems than giving my two week notice would have.  Oh well.  It can't be undone.

The second reason was that the job sucked.  Physically, mentally, emotionally, I might have been able to squeeze out another week (I had next week off, so I only needed one more), but it was a struggle just to make it to the weekend.  I stayed an hour over my scheduled end time every night this week, usually for an hour or so (last night, I only stayed 30 minutes over).  Tonight was the only night that I put everything out on the floor (I worked in a bakery department), and I stayed 1 hour 15 minutes over!

Then there was the training.  Originally, I was trained to be a barista.  Then the construction of the coffee shop was delayed.  I was moved over to the bakery without having been certified for the barista position.  I was officially trained a total of sixteen hours in the bakery (they kept saying I was a trainee, but every night that I worked at the bakery, except one, I was alone for all but an hour or half hour at the beginning of my shift, and the one in which I was only alone for the last hour was worse, because the person I worked with baked so much that I couldn't put all of it out on the shelves in the hour that remained).  In fact, though I was trained for the morning shift, the first time I was put in the bakery by myself was for a night shift, and there was no overlap with the person who worked the earlier shift.

Finally, the job itself just wasn't for me.  I should have said that when questioned by the manager on duty as to why I wanted to leave immediately (so much for leaving unnoticed, huh?).  I am not a fast worker, except as a cashier.  I prefer jobs that aren't so hectic.  This job was more or less a shot in the dark, and it got me to the point where I could take the census job, without a gap in pay, but it wasn't a job that one would associate with me.  For people who can do that kind of job, good for them.  They probably had proper training.

Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.
-Henry Ford

This quote is on my desk, though I had to search the Internet to see who said it.  I've been looking at this quote throughout most of the day.  If quitting is a type of failure, then indeed, it is giving me an opportunity to begin again.

Did I make the right decision?  I don't know.  I should be able to find something within the four weeks that I am working the census job, and hopefully something that will actually cover my expenses, rather than just put a dent in them, as my recent job did ($8.65 an hour).  The only reason to hang onto that job for a little longer was its benefits, but why join a union, with union dues, if I'm only going to work at there for a few months at most?

Years from now, I'm hoping that I'll look back at this decision as similar to Jack London's decision to continue writing stories over working a steady job at the post office, and not as a step that leads to my having to leave Seattle due to lack of funds and lack of work (though that's being a bit dramatic).  Due to my quick exit, I know that the company I worked for won't hire me again.  At least my checks are still being sent to my barista training store as opposed to the one in which I worked at the bakery, and at least I shop at a different grocery store than the one that I worked at.  But I shouldn't be this depressed less than two days before my birthday.  I should remember the quote by Eleanor Roosevelt, and realize that today I fulfilled one of my favorite quotes:

Always do what you are afraid to do.   -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Maybe this is a turning point in my fortunes.  As Aaron Eckhart said in The Dark Knight, "The night is darkest just before the dawn."

Here's to the dawn.

Author's Note: This post was written on Friday night and posted just after midnight on Saturday.  So when I write "today," I'm writing about Friday.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

My Favorite Authors: Mark Twain

Mark Twain Image

Mark Twain died one hundred years ago today in Redding, Connecticut.  Had he lived, he would be very old.  In celebration of the centennial of Twain's death (and in recognition of my two years at the Mark Twain House and Museum), I have chosen to write about Twain in this edition of My Favorite Authors.

Like my previous entrant, Leo Tolstoy, Twain did not win the Nobel Prize for Literature, though he should have.  He did, however, receive an honorary doctorate from Oxford University.  He was so proud of the award that he wore his cap and gown from this occasion to other events, including his daughter's wedding.

Mark Twain is, in many ways, America's Oscar Wilde, but instead of poking fun at the social classes and the sexes, Twain poked fun at all aspects of society, often saving his most vicious barbs for the injustices that made America -- and still make America -- an unequal society.  And while he is known today mainly for two books, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, to read and love Twain is to realize how many different genres, both fiction and nonfiction, the man wrote in, and on how many different subjects.

One can argue over whether or not Twain is the greatest of all American writers, but he is certainly the most important.  He broke away from the European traditions that many earlier American authors had copied, and not only wrote in the American vernacular, but also seemed to understand what lay at the core of every American, and separated them from, say, the British.  Having been a product of Western Expansion, Twain was alive at a time when America was asserting its own identity, an identity separate but forged from that which the Founding Fathers had envisioned.  In addition, he revolutionized three things in American letters: the tall tale, the children's story (Tom Sawyer acts like a real kid, unlike the pious children who had preceded him in literature), and humor.  It is this third quality, used so effectively in his short stories and in novels such as Tom Sawyer, that is his greatest gift to the world of literature.

And yet, the view of Twain as a humorist can cloud one's judgment of him as a "serious" writer.  The job of a humorist is to show people how preposterous they are.  There are different levels to showing people this aspect of their personalities.  There's light-ribbing, feigned disbelief, disappointment, and despair.  In the last two categories, the humorist often becomes serious, and when Twain became serious, he could write some wonderful prose.  Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, "The United States of Lyncherdom," and "The War Prayer" attest to this.

Unlike Wilde, he was not successful at writing poetry or plays ("Is He Dead?" being the only example of a play that Twain wrote), but his journalistic career and his extensive traveling gave him an eye and an ear for local color, and for a uniquely American sense of humor.  Greatest American writer arguments aside, I would assert that he remains America's most relevant writer, and one of the best storytellers this land has ever produced.

Recommended Reading (Note: These novels, and several of the short stories, originally came with illustrations.  Those are the versions you should seek out):

The Gilded Age (with Charles Dudley Warner)

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (more enjoyable if read while still a child)

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (his masterpiece)

The Prince and the Pauper (one of Twain's best plots)

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court (good in parts, but uneven)

Short Stories (a sampling): The Notorious Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, Niagara, A True Story, Cannibalism in the Cars, The Story of the Bad Little Boy,  The Story of the Good Little Boy, The Private History of a Campaign That Failed, The Diary of Adam and Eve, The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg, The Mysterious Stranger

Essays (a sampling): How to Tell a Story, Taming the Bicycle, The United States of Lyncherdom, Seventieth Birthday, The War Prayer, The Death of Jean

Sunday, April 18, 2010

My Birthday List

My birthday is a week from today.  Usually this means that I create a list of presents that I would like to receive on that day and send it to my family, giving them their second biggest laugh of the year (their first biggest laugh is my Christmas list).  Of course, as I've gotten older, I've only made these lists so that people who are already planning on getting me something have an easier time shopping for me.  And, the lists have gotten smaller (though perhaps more expensive?).

This year, my list is very simple: I don't want anything.  Sure, you can send me a card, but apart from a high-paying, enjoyable job, and a wonderful girlfriend (and more friends) to spend some time with, there's nothing that I really need (well, I don't NEED a girlfriend, either, though I certainly want one--but I have to find a way to support myself, first), and certainly nothing in the way of material possessions.  As it so happens, though, one of my friends (and fellow bloggers) will be walking for the March of Dimes on May 8th.  So, if any of you out there want to celebrate my birthday in a meaningful way (or just want to support a good cause), I'd suggest sponsoring my friend, or donating money to the March of Dimes.  That's all I really want for my birthday.

Oh, and this CD. ;-)

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Seattle Grandeur

I didn't have a good day at work today.  But, as I was walking home, I turned to my right, and saw.....


Mountain Re-enactment

This is why I love Seattle.

When a bad day is had in such beautiful surroundings, it doesn't feel as bad.

Then I was almost hit by a car.

Okay, so I made that last part up, but it would have been ironic if that had happened. ;-)

Saturday, April 10, 2010

In Search of Beethoven's Sixth

Things get broken during moves.  It's inevitable, like rain in Seattle.  Sooner or later, it'll happen.

I've been lucky in that, while some objects that have been shipped to me have been scuffed, only two items actually received irreparable damage.  One was an Easter egg (not a real egg, folks!) attached to a string, which my mom thinks I received when I was very young, for one of my first Easters.  That egg cracked, since my mom decided to ship it to me in a box full of hard objects, protected only by the layer of cotton that my socks gave it.  The other damaged item annoyed me more, and was damaged in a somewhat strange way.

I received this Furtwangler conducts Beethoven Symphonies two-CD set several Christmases ago.  Disc one contains a 1952 live recording of the Third Symphony with the Berlin Philharmonic, and a 1947 live recording of the Leonore II Overture with the Hamburg Philharmonic State Orchestra.  Disc two contains BPO performances of the Fifth and Sixth Symphonies, taken from a single concert in 1954.  Other than the annoying two-second pauses that Music and Arts puts between each movement (the third and fourth movements of the Fifth and the third, fourth, and fifth movements of the Sixth are played with no breaks in between), I loved listening to these recordings, especially of the Sixth Symphony, Furtwangler's best recording of the work.  And, I should point out, that without Music and Arts, many great live broadcasts (particularly those filed away in the German radio archives) might never have seen the light of day, and with Furtwangler, his live recordings tended to catch fire more often than his studio recordings did, benefit as the latter did from superior sound.

But, as fate would have it, here is what happened to that second disc, despite the fact that the CD case was undamaged and wrapped in clothing:

At the very edge of this almost 79-minute long CD, part of the data is missing (the little dot to the left shows damage, too, but only of the top layer).  According to my brother, this kind of damage can occur if the top of the CD (which is only coated two times with protective material versus the bottom of the CD being coated six times) is damaged down through the bottom of the disc.  Can't see it?  Here's a closeup:

Now, if this disc had been 74 minutes long, I wouldn't have noticed a thing, but because it's as long as it is, the data goes right up to the edge of the disc, which means that this happens in the final movement of the Sixth Symphony (from the 5:14 mark till the 5:59 mark, getting really bad around the 5:22 mark till 5:59).

I was, however, able to clean it up a bit on iTunes, so that the loss of music doesn't last for as long (starts around 5:23 and lasts until 5:38):

Still, the music is not whole, and is currently not available on Amazon....unless, of course, you feel that paying $80 for a used CD is a good deal.  Even an alternate release of these tracks (included with other great postwar recordings of Furtwangler on the Tahra label, which I believe does not have the annoying two second pauses in between tracks, and may even include better-sounding versions of the Fifth and Sixth Symphonies than the ones I own) is out of my price range.

What to do?  Why, check out used CD stores, of course!

First, I went to Half Price Books on Roosevelt (I should also go to the one in Capitol Hill, but that's for another day).  Half Price Books carries mostly books, but also movies, CDs, and even vinyl.  In fact, they have almost as much vinyl as they do CDs, which is to say, not much.  And their classical music area takes up about as much room as the top of this desk does.  Still, one can find occasional goodies in there.

Unfortunately, I found nothing there on the several occasions that I visited the place, so today I went to a place called Neptune Music Co, which is near the Neptune Theatre.  Better yet, it's down some stairs, and then some more stairs, reminding me of the out-of-the-way music stores in Tokyo.  So I go in there, and the place is packed with DVDs, CDs, vinyl, cassettes, VHS tapes, and boxes upon boxes upon boxes.  Even better, the background music is off of a vinyl record.  Oh yeah, this is a place for a serious music collector.

Their classical music section seemed even smaller than the section in Half Price Books.  Then again, I was only looking at the CDs.  The selection, however, was better, and on two occasions, I found a CD in my hand, only to put it back upon further reflection.  I also found a Tahra CD of Furtwangler's famous Brahms recordings of the Haydn Variations and the First Symphony, which were included in that boxed set that also featured the recordings of the Fifth and Sixth Symphonies whose transfers might have rivaled, ever so slightly, those on the Music and Arts label.

So, until I find a suitable replacement, this blog is to be continued.  Unless you want me to make something up.  This is, after all, a literary blog.  You do?  Okay, here goes:

So I find out that Music and Arts is based in Berkeley, CA.  Even better, their phone number is on the back of the CDs.

So I call them up and say, "What the hell is wrong with your CDs?"

"Can I help you, sir?"

"Yeah, your CDs suck.  Furtwangler knew not to trust his music to recording studios."

"Sir, what are you saying?"

"I'm saying that your CDs fall apart at the merest touch."

"Is one of your CDs damaged?"

"Yeah!  What did you guys make it out of, cheap plastic?"

"Well sir, that is how CDs are made."

"So are you saying I'm stuck with a coaster because you guys use cheap plastic?"

"Would you like us to replace the CD?"

"Damn right I would!"

"Well, if you send it back to us, sir, we'll send you one, free of charge.  You just have to pay shipping."

"Well, all right, how much is shipping?"

"Seven dollars per CD."

"Seven dollars?  Fuck that shit!"

So I slammed down the phone and went searching for a used CD store.

I first went to Half Price Books, which was weird in that all of the tags were cut in half.  Not only that, but they sold half CDs, and even half books.  And the people at the counter looked homeless.  I got out of there as soon as I could.

Walking down 45th Street, I came across a sign on a wall: Neptune Music Co: Enter if You Dare!  Oh, I dared, all right.  I walk down several flights of stairs, some twisting, some turning, until I arrived in a subterranean dungeon.  I jumped as an ugly, wrinkled, and tiny man appeared from behind a desk cluttered with stacks of CDs.

"May I help you?" he hissed.

I explained my situation to him.  He nodded his head several times, then said, "I have just the thing for you.  Please, follow me."

We headed into a back room, where he produced a key from his raggedy overcoat and unlocked a door which blended into the wall.

"After you," he said, gesturing into the passageway with his hand.

I entered, then heard him say, "This is the labyrinth.  If you can find the David Bowie CD hidden inside, then what you seek will appear before your eyes."

I turned around, but the shrunken little man had already closed the door behind me.  The door lacked a handle.  The only way to go was forward.

The labyrinth was massive, and filled with all sorts of creatures that wanted to kill me and plants that wanted to destroy me.  I remember thinking, This is an awful lot to do for thirty seconds of missing music, but continued pressing onward.

The ending was anticlimactic.  I found the Bowie CD lying on a table, next to a huge sword.  I grabbed the CD and the sword, at which point a huge minotaur came crashing through the wall.  Before I had time to react, he impaled himself on my sword, and died.  Then the scene around me changed, and I was back in the dungeon, er, store.  The little geezer was clapping from behind the counter.

"Well done," he said.  "My customers are always asking for that CD, but none of them want to get it themselves."

"So, where's the Furtwangler CD?" I asked as I handed over The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust.

"We're currently out.  Come back next week," the man said.

Luckily, I still had the sword with me, so I impaled him with it, and left.

Oh, and I took the Bowie CD, too.  Jerk.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Past Is the Past, and Yet We Go On

In recent days, and particularly after having watched Yi Yi, I have thought about the truism written in the above title.  A truism that is perhaps one of the hardest truisms for men and women to learn, and certainly one of the hardest and harshest truisms that I've had to learn.

I've known, for a long time, that the past cannot be the present, but I often wished that it were.  What I didn't realize is that not only can that never be, but that never should be.  I'm not saying that we don't get second chances in life, but there comes a point where a decision will lead you down a road, and you can't go back to the fork and take the other path.  And even when we are given second chances, they are really first chances, for the circumstances around the choice that we didn't make the first time have changed.

In middle school and high school, I often wished that I was still friends with two of my best friends from elementary school: Matt and Steve.  But it was not to be.  They had changed; I had changed in different ways.  And then when I graduated from high school and went to college, many of my high school friends vanished from view.  Thanks to Facebook, I am now in contact with many of them again, but even there, how many of them do I regularly talk to?  And how many of those friendships have gone through transformations, either on my end or theirs, or both?

This also applies to places.  When I went back to Harrisonburg to try and live and work near the college that I graduated from three years earlier, I was doomed to fail, because I had remembered the town as a student, and had been there with other students.  When I went there again, I arrived in the summer, when most of the college kids were home, and I was left with the harsh reality that Harrisonburg was nothing without JMU, and JMU was now a memory.  That is why, though I would like to revisit London some day, I know I can't copy the experience of my semester abroad there.  If I tried, I would only remember an old memory and what was, rather than make a new memory out of what is.

But, of course, the big experience that I will never repeat, can never repeat, anywhere in the world, is the experience I had in Japan.  A three year experience with a cast of characters and situations that I could never hope to realign.  And so, of all of the places I wish to revisit, Japan is the one that I worry about the most, for it is the place where I am in the most danger of falling into the clutches of the past, instead of forming new memories with my friends there.  It is healthy to remember what has gone on before, but it is not healthy to wallow in memories.  Wallowing in memories prevents new ones from forming.

That is one reason I came to Seattle.  I could not escape the spectre of Japan in Connecticut, because nothing was there to remind me of my trip, and so I missed all aspects of it.  Here, I hope to slowly wean myself off of my Japanese adventure, while making new memories and connections associated with Japan, via the Japanese Meetup Group that I joined soon after arriving here.

Of course, the only foolproof way of preventing myself from wallowing in old memories is to create new ones.  Sitting in my room all day, typing away on a computer screen, doesn't help (well, okay, it helps a little if I'm typing TO someone, but it's a poor substitute for talking to someone face-to-face).  I must be active, which is why getting a job as a barista, though part-time and not high paying (though with great benefits), has helped with my well-being tremendously.  Also, I have some events planned this weekend and later in the month, in order to get me out of the house in a non-work setting.  Otherwise, how can I form an opinion about a city that I never get to explore, whose citizens I never meet, whose customs I never try, whose food I never eat, whose nightlife I never sample (I'm talking karaoke, folks :-))?

Anyway, these are my thoughts.  I turn thirty-one later this month, so now is a good time to take stock of where I am, and where I still must go.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Why Is Life So Fleeting?

Why is life so fleeting?
Why must all things die?
Why must days defeat us
While in beds we lie?
Why must petals wilt,
And beauty fade like sighs?
Why is life so fleeting?
Why must all things die?

Thursday, April 1, 2010




じゃ、また! 返事を待ってください!;-P

Translation: Added April 4, 2010 at 18:36

Hello, everyone!
I am not a pencil.  I really love cheese.  My name is Harry Houdini.  Every day, I make okonomiyaki.  After I eat ice, I feel good.  When I went to Kyoto to go swimming, the weather outside was cold.  The inside of Mt. Fuji is filled with natto.  Honest.  My father is Hugh Jackman.  My mother is Rinko Kikuchi.  And, I am not an eraser.

My best friend's name is Baka, but he is not an idiot.  He is a fruit.  Please look at the photo of Baka below.  Isn't he a cool dude?

[caption] What is this?  Who am I?

See you!  I eagerly await your reply! ;-P