14 February 2013 ~ 8 Comments

好きなみんな:A Japanese-Style Valentine’s Day

好きなみんな:A Japanese-Style Valentine’s Day

School let out so I headed to the internet café to do some writing. I was about to hop on the express but it was a pretty tiring day today so decided I didn’t feel like standing all the way to Jiyugaoka and opted to cop a squat on the local. I sat there organizing […]

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09 October 2011 ~ 22 Comments

Maybe They Think Hawaii is in Japan!

Maybe They Think Hawaii is in Japan!

This conversation took place with a Japanese friend at a cafe in Yokohama: Me: …I thought it was a very interesting article! What do you think? Yoko: Of what? Me: His argument that both Gaikokujin and Gaijin essentially mean the same thing: Not so much foreigner, but not-Japanese. Yoko: You think so? Me: Well, yeah, […]

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10 July 2010 ~ 30 Comments

Hi! My name is Loco…and I am a racist! pt.1

At least, I think I am. I mean, racism is so difficult to define, isn’t it?  But, recent events and a careful and honest assessment of my response to these events have brought me to this conclusion. There’s always the dictionary definition of racism to refer to, but, like pornography, racism is one of those things you […]

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26 June 2010 ~ 4 Comments

The annoying, the offensive, and the spooky

Over the course of my seven years here I have modified again and again the extent to which I’ll allow myself to be affected by what’s going on around me. By that I mean the behavior of  Japanese people. I’m reminded of a scene from a very funny movie by one of my favorite film writers- Cameron […]

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20 May 2010 ~ 7 Comments

Rainy Days

Rainy Days

It’s raining in Yokohama today (see pic). And, this morning’s commute reminded me of a post I wrote 2 years ago. Here it is (with a few minor edits): Many Japanese, when walking towards me, have a tendency to (upon noticing me and while at the same time noticing that there is little room or little time to make […]

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06 March 2009 ~ 51 Comments

Lighten up, Loco

Lighten up, Loco
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CyBoLPrjqFw]

I’ve been doing some thinking…a lot of thinking, actually. For the most part I’ve focused my blog on Japanese people, culture, customs and idiosyncrasies, and the highs and lows of living among them, as well as the effect of xenophobia on the soul. What I have ignored to a large degree is the issue of other people living here who also have […]

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06 March 2009 ~ 19 Comments

The Homogeneous versus The Homo Sapiens: Conversation 3/5/09

Student: I read your blog about the empty seat on the train. Is it fiction? I can’t believe it. Me: Can’t believe what? Student: Is it true? Me: Well…I guess it does sound incredible. I’ve gotten used to it, though. Student: You seem tired. Me: Some days are rougher than others Student: I really can’t believe […]

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26 February 2009 ~ 57 Comments

Acts of Retaliation #3: Don’t you understand Japanese?

Acts of Retaliation #3: Don’t you understand Japanese?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wswiZvKY8nA]

One of my pet peeves is when staff people feel obligated to speak English to me because I’m not Japanese. Whether or not I’m using Japanese is irrelevant. My native language is irrelevant. Whether or not they can even speak English is irrelevant. Foreigner equals English. English is the language of foreigners. So, occasionally, when I […]

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24 February 2009 ~ 41 Comments

…And, oh yeah, one other reason I just LOVE Japan: The Girls!

…And, oh yeah, one other reason I just LOVE Japan: The Girls!

Whenever I meet a new Japanese girl sooner or later they get around to asking me The Question: What are the differences between Japanese girls and American girls? It’s a loaded question to be sure. Back in 2003 when asked The Question, I’d look right into the doe-like eyes of my Josei (girl) du jour and say with a straight face, “Japanese […]

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03 February 2009 ~ 4 Comments

Hiro, her Hero

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fcjOi_3H7gw]

Y’all know me by now. Every now and then I gotta release. And since I’m non-violent  I use my keyboard like a punching bag. Poor keys! Anyway, last night, I had to exercise such restraint, when I boarded the train at Kikuna Station and a guy was standing near the door with a girl, perhaps his […]

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