Archive for January, 2006

Rethinking Reality PART I

January 31, 2006

That on-line personality test has confirmed what everyone around me has known all along, and what I had feared all along:

I have absolutely no real sense of reality.

I live in a dream-like world fit for five-year olds. I thrive on happenstance and pure good fortune. (Fortune tellers have always told me I was born under a mighty lucky star.) My decisions are devoid of objective reality. I am a totally uncool, spoiled, friggin’ child going on 29!

To remedy this, I will hereby examine my current (mis)understanding of “reality,” analyze where I might be (dead) wrong, and propose concrete measures to bring myself to a more objective understanding of reality.

First, consider TIME.

A typical weekday: Hina spends 7.5 hours at her day job and then dawdles for as much as 1.5 hours more, wasting precious time that she can otherwise use to read or write. She spends another 2.5 hours commuting to and from work. She loves to fall asleep on trains and buses. She also loves to fall asleep in the bathtub and takes baths twice a day: another good 2 hours down the drain. Tuesdays she takes saxophone lessons for an hour. Saturdays she teaches English for an hour. 2 hours eating/talking on the phone/watching TV, plus 2 more hours blogging and surfing, leaves a total of merely 6 hours between sleeping and writing — which doesn’t exactly spell out diligence for a writer aspiring towards authorhood.

No wonder I’m not getting anywhere with my writings! I don’t write because I don’t even try hard enough to make time to write!

What to do?

  1. Unless someone’s dear life depended on it, leave the day job as soon as the clock strikes 16:00. Seriously, no one needs me at the office as much as I would like to think.

  2. READ while commuting.

  3. WRITE instead of complaining about stupid TV shows.

  4. Realize that time is precious. Every second wasted is a life less satisfying.

Really, I should have asked these questions 20 years ago.

But as Amnesty International’s Secretary General Irene Khan puts it, if we ask the right questions we’ll get to the right solutions. For objective-minded individuals, anyway.


Best Gwynnie movie ever!

January 30, 2006

A theatrical adaptation of “Proof,” written by David Auburn and performed at the Trinity Repertory in Providence, remained one of the most memorable stages Kaoru and I had seen together in the U.S.

So heading out to Yurakucho for the movie adaptation of “Proof,” directed by John Madden and starring Gwynnie, was naturally a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon — and we both loved it!

Gwyneth Paltrow as Catherine was sensitive and brilliantly low key. So much depends upon a subtly arched back, neatly gathered knees with canvas sneakers.

Hope Davis turned in a stinging performance as the intolerable older sister of Catherine’s. I love it that her voice changes into a whiny tone at every emotional pinnacle.

Jake Gyllenhaal was hunky and cute, but I adore his sister twice more. Haven’t seen “Secretary” (2002)? Great quirky-kinky movie. (Rated R for strong sexuality, some nudity, depiction of behavioral disorders, and language.) First and best Maggie movie yet!


January 29, 2006


結果: 夢をみるのも悪いことじゃないけど…あなたは現実逃避タイプです。



むしろ可哀相なのは『殿』のほう。ちなみに彼は、激レアモノの「唯我独尊タイプ」だそうな。 皆さまもぜひお試しあれ。


January 29, 2006





銀座デビュー(!)二日目は、友人クリスとMariage Frères銀座本店で優雅なアフタヌーンティーを堪能。男の友達でこういうのに付き合ってくれるのって貴重だよね。クリスに感謝です。



January 27, 2006








January 27, 2006





* 『殿』とは水村美苗先生の「私小説~from left to right~」から無断で引用した言葉です。悪しからず…

Tokyo Unreal Estate

January 26, 2006

Finding an apartment in Tokyo is like a torrid and pathetic love affair. Hopeful renters flock to real estate agents’ offices and sift through pages after pages of resumes containing tantalizing words like “Will Bring in Lots of Sunlight,” “Quaint and Charming,” “Friendly and Sophisticated” — just like a dating service! And then you actually go visit that coveted studio not too far from Harajuku and discover the tackiest maroon-and-pink tile scheme EVER in the kitchen. You have to look long and hard to find your Only One.

Then reality hits hard: unreal prices.

Key money (2 months’ rent equivalent) + security deposit (2 months) + actual rent for the first month + rental insurance + real estate agent fee (1 month)

= a fortune!

I adore Sendagaya and would love to live there. I fell in love with a particularly swank studio near a publishing house — even prayed at the local temple to bring me good tidings! Nothing doing. My days of chasing after dream apartments are over. For the time being I’ll remain a “parasite single.” Sounds worse than a spinster!

Still reading Kyusaku Yumeno Complete Works Volume 2. Interesting to note that the entire book is a fierce and rigorous criticism of Tokyo written 80 years ago. I guess not much has changed since then. I must note with trepidation that if the Big Quake hits the Kanto area, we’ll have to start re-building this beloved corrupt city all over again.


January 24, 2006


  • この世にゴマンとあるブログ上に日々書き溜められていく言葉、ことば、コトバ。それぞれの重さたるや如何ほどのものか?重複することばや理念や感情に、果たしてどれだけの意義があるというのか?

  • 要するにブログ=自己満足でしかないのか?

  • ブログ=情報提供

  • でもこれでは情報のタダ化が進む一方では?(だから活字を買う人が減る)

  • ってゆーか私日本語ばっかり書いてるじゃーん

  • ってゆーかもっとフツーのことばで書けないんだろうか

  • 試しに自己採点してみた[国語]センター試験はボロボロだったじゃーん!!




January 24, 2006





黒を基調としたジャケットデザインが美しく、あまりに汚れやすそうなので、麻製のブックカバーまで購入しまった(@1,260 yen – definitely worth the investment.)

通勤電車で本の世界に浸る。過ぎていく時間がいとおしく、大切に使わなければと思わせる。本を読んでいない時、例えば犬の散歩中でも、おおらかですがすがしい気持ちは持続する。夢野先生の文章が私の周りの森羅万象をもかたどってくれたら、と願う。犬の遠吠えがカタカナで空気中に震えている(よう な気がする)。




It’s never too late to start the New Year.

January 23, 2006

It’s still January after all.

So I’m commemorating my (incorrigibly late) dawning of the New Year by starting a blog. The real test is how consistent and persistent I remain after the initial thrills of spilling my guts out in public.

I plan to write mostly in English, though I am prone to thinking in Japanese these days since I’m surrounded by not much else than the Japanese language. (Well, not true. I guess I do work at an international school full of gaijins.) So I guess that means I’ll write in both.