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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Useful Japanese Words/Phrases

Days 1460 - 1466
Sunday, March 18 - 24, 2012

Day 1460 (Heated Debate)
Sunday, March 18, 2012

Went to church this morning and I mentioned to the pastor (who is Malaysian) that I should be visiting his country from April 5 - April 9. He said he should be visiting there as well but should be coming back to Japan on April 3.

Later in the evening, me and my Japanese friend had a heated argument concerning my last blog "Things I dislike/hate about Japan" . She was defending the Japanese shops and business owners who put up the signs "Japanese ONLY" on the outside of their establishments. I told her that this is racist, but she said it is not. I told her that anywhere in the world that allows one race to do something, but prevents another race from doing it, is in fact racism.... We argued about this for about 30 mins. She argued that foreigners sometime tend to go to these places and behave badly and at times destroy the property of the owners. To which the owners often have to pay for themselves. I agree with this but that doesn't mean that ALL foreigners should be excluded.

But then she mentioned that when these shop owners say "Japanese Only" It doesn't mean Japanese as in the race of the people, but actually mean someone who understands the culture and can behave like a Japanese. Not behaving badly and destroying stuff. So if you are black but a citizen of Japan and/or understand the culture, you could enter. I am personally unsure about this but whatever.



Day 1461 ( Useful Japanese Words/Phrases)
Monday, March 19, 2012

Had only 3 classes today, so I left work at 1:00 pm.


Konnichiwa (Hello) and Sayonara (Goodbye) aside there are quite a few useful Japanese words/phrases out there that you can utilize if you should visit Japan. He

Arigatou Gozaimasu - Thank you.

Hajimemashite - Nice to meet you

Yoroshiku onegaishimasu (*) 
- This is one of the many Japanese words that is difficult to translate into English. It means something to the effect of "Be kind to me from now on" or "continue to show me your kind favors". It is said quite frequently and should be repeated if it is said to you. The ne is pronounced like the ne in net.

Sumimasen - 
This literally mean sorry or excuse me. But it is also used to say thank you as well. If you want to ask for direction or something, saying "sumimasen" at first is the polite thing to do.

Gomenasai -
This means I'm really sorry. Kind of like a strong apology for doing something wrong or being late for something.

Wakari mashita - I understand

Wakaranai / Wakarimasen - I don't understand / I don't know

Genki desu ka - How are you?

Watashi  - Me/I

Anata - You

Daijyoubu -
This means it is fine or I'm fine. A Japanese person may ask you "Daijyoubu? or Daijyoubu desuka?" They are asking if you are fine.

Ikura desu ka - Whats the cost? / How much is it?

             kara kimashita - I am from           .

Watashi wa         suki desu - I like                .

             doko desu ka - Where is               .

              ga itai - My            hurts.

Nani kore - What is that ?



Day 1462 (Spring is Here / More Radiation Fear)
Tuesday, March 20, 2012 { 4 Years!!! }

Today was a national holiday that marks the beginning of Spring. Yeah winter is over!!! But the truth is that Winter and Spring in Japan feels the same to me. Actually the latter part of Autumn until the latter part of spring is pretty much the same.

Today also marks my 4 years anniversary in Japan. Had no clue I would be here this long. Most of us her for over 2 years have a love / hate relationship with Japan. Loads of things we really like, likewise loads of things we really hate.


More Radiation fears

Fear of radiation creeping south

Some parents with young kids relocating from Tokyo area

Lingering concerns about radiation a year into the Fukushima nuclear crisis have prompted people even as far away as the Tokyo area, some 100 to 250 km from the Fukushima No. 1 power plant, to move away.

Mamiko Joosten, who has lived for seven years in Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture, has now decided to move to Okinawa with her 6-year-old daughter out of fear of radiation, leaving her husband behind.
"I do not want to regret later on exposing my daughter to the threat of radiation. The government's limit does not guarantee absolute safety, so I would rather choose to leave," she said.
Her husband, Maurice, said that though "it is difficult" to be apart from his wife and daughter, he has opted to stay behind because he likes his current job, which he said is "not something I can easily find in Okinawa."




Day 1463 ( Japanese Politician Has Child Artificially at 50 )
Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Went to work today only because I was scheduled to. Some of the staff members saw me and was surprised that I went to work today. So the head teacher (Some dude ranked below the vice principal but above the other teachers) called my English coordinator.

When the English coordinator came, she told me to organize the English stuff and put them in the English room and also to make a chart with some random English topics like "Fruits" / "Stationery" etc. with pictures. So I organized the English stuff and placed them into the English room. Then I started doing the chart thingy. Just then, the principal came to me and said that I could leave at about 11:30 am. So I stayed a bit then left at about 12:15 noon. In Niimi, I would have to wait until 4:00, even if I have absolutely nothing to do.

In the evening, I had my second class with my new student. We spoke about his job as a programmer and the different projects he gets to do as a programmer. Currently he is focused on studying how forests all over the world has been increasing in certain parts of the world but decreasing in other parts.


Lawmaker has no regrets about giving birth at 50

Seiko Noda, a 51-year-old Lower House lawmaker, drew wide public attention and controversy by bearing a child at age 50 through artificial insemination.
News photo
Maternal: Lawmaker Seiko Noda of the Liberal Democratic Party spends time with her son Masaki in a hospital. SEIKO NODA'S OFFICE / KYODO
During an interview in February, about a year after giving birth to a boy using ova from a third party in the United States, Noda said she has no regrets. She says her son, Masaki, who has never left the hospital since birth due to serious medical problems, is her "mentor" who trains her as a politician.
Noda, a six-term lawmaker and a member of the Liberal Democratic Party, has had a stellar career as a politician. She served as posts and telecommunications minister as well as consumer affairs minister and was once widely expected to become the first female prime minister.
Her private life has been filled with constant travails, however, because she had enormous difficulty having a child. At age 44 she published a book titled "Watashi wa Umitai" ("I Want to Give Birth"), in which she poured her heart out about her burning desire to somehow produce offspring and discussed her experience with fertility techniques.




Day 1464 ( Last Classes for 2011/2012 School Year / Google Ordered to Stop Auto Complete)
Thursday, March 22, 2012

Had my final classes for 2011/2012 school year. Only 3 classes, all first graders. So I ended at about 11:15.  After that I ran to the dentist to get the first of my 2 times a year dental check up?


Google ordered to suspend autocomplete function over cyber-harassment

The Tokyo District Court approved a petition demanding that Google Inc. suspend its autocomplete search feature for Internet browsers after a man alleged that it breached his privacy and got him fired, his lawyer said.

Google is refusing to suspend the feature, saying that its headquarters in the United States will not be regulated by Japanese law and that the case does not warrant deleting the autocomplete suggestions related to the petition under its in-house privacy policy, lawyer Hiroyuki Tomita said.
The case, which was adjudicated on March 19, is believed to be the first to order the suspension of the Web search feature, which attempts to instantly anticipate and list the words or phrases a person will type into a browser's search box, Tomita said.
The man, whose name was withheld, decided to seek a court injunction after learning the autocomplete feature likely played a role when he suddenly lost his job several years ago and caused several companies to subsequently reject him when he applied for new jobs, Tomita said.




Day 1465 ( Speeches, flowers and Papers / YMCA Practice Teaching )
Friday, March 23, 2012

I had to do two speeches at my main school today. First one was for the staff members which was done in the staff room. Then the next one was done in the auditorium in front of over 700 Japanese individuals. Afterwards, I had to walk through the crowd of them with flowers and some papers. Tears welled up in eyes but I promised myself if at all possible, do not cry in front of people. Privately in my own quarters its fine but in front of people.... No!! Also I could come back to this school in April, but so far I am unsure. And that is exactly what I told them as well, that I am unsure if I will be back at this school next year.

In the evening I went to the YMCA where I should start working on Saturdays and did 2 practice sessions. I had 4 boy children ranging from grade 1 - 3. When I just started, one of the kids started crying. Oh, and their parents were all there looking on as well. I was not informed of any of this. All I was told is that I would be teaching some kids. Anyway, after the first 4 minutes, the kid that was crying was the happiest of the lot. And they were all smiling and having fun.

I just really hate that initial part though, where a kid or 2 see a black man and just freaks out....



Day 1466 ( Active Faults )
Saturday, March 24, 2012

Stayed in all day.

Threatening, active faults found off Boso

Dual jolt could trigger Tokyo temblor up to magnitude 9

Two previously unknown active faults were found off the Boso Peninsula in Chiba Prefecture, with one researcher warning that a jolt in the two faults at the same time could trigger an earthquake of magnitude 8 to 9.

The two faults, one at least 160 km long and the other more than 300 km, were found on the floor of the Pacific Ocean around 100 to 200 km southeast of the southern tip of the peninsula, according to a group of researchers from Hiroshima University, Nagoya University, the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology and other parties.
"The faults have been unmarked and uninvestigated. There is a possibility of strong jolts and tsunami reaching the southern Kanto region (including Tokyo) and the Tokai region (central Honshu). It should be promptly investigated in detail," said research group member Mitsuhisa Watanabe, a professor at Toyo University.
The group will report its findings at a Thursday meeting of the Association of Japanese Geographers in Tokyo.


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