Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday Korikai!

Have a nice time at Outback?

Drinking Water and the Power of Suggestion?

Man, I had a scare today. Last week, when Hurricane Isabel blew through, our neighborhood was more or less spared the inconvenience of the sustained power shortage experience by others. Happily, we went about our business, enjoying the day off from school and work. Yesterday, I talked to a colleague at work and we chatted about the storm and she told me how her townhouse was in the dark until Saturday morning. She also told me how the Fairfax County Water Authority put out an alert for all consumers to boil water, since the power outage caused the treatment plant to lose water pressure and the water may have been “compromised”. She and her husband had been boiling water and taking showers at his mother’s house in MD to avoid being contaminated.

Gulp… I live something like 5 minutes away from my colleague in Fairfax, and I had been drinking water, showering, brushing my teeth… I suddenly felt very woozy. But I had to run to class. I taught for three hours with a gurgling, churning stomach. I returned to my office, left my material and headed straight to the head. Can you spell d-i-a-r-r-h-e-a? Oh~~~~. I was convinced I had contracted somekind of dreadful bacteria. I once drunk the water from a stream in Mt. Rainier in the NW, and paid for it a week later with the same symptoms. I returned to the office and called Musubi-chan, even as I Googled Fairfax County Water.

“Are you feeling okay?”

“Fine, Why?” She asked

“Didn’t Unagi-kun (our son) have the runs yesterday?”

“Yeah, he was complaining about a stomach ache since Sunday, but he seems better today. Why?”

I frantically clicked my way through a couple of links, until I got to the Fairfax County Water Authority homepage.

Boil Water Notice Lifted for Northern Virginia

Ah, shit, there WAS a notice! “Well, I just heard that the water we drank may have been contaminated…”

“But I feel fine, are you sure?”

As a precautionary measure, the boil water notice was issued early Friday morning.

“A notice was issued on Friday.”

Once water pressure in the system was restored, sampling was conducted on Friday and Saturday to test for potentially harmful bacteria.

“Huh? Where was it posted? Why didn’t they mention it on TV?” Musubi-chan pressed.

No harmful bacteria were found in the sampling.

“Uh, nevermind. I’ll be home the usual time…”

Whew! I guess we didn’t drink anything harmful afterall. But then, what was the earlier stomach cramp all about? I will never, ever underestimate the power of suggestion again.

Lunch: Unagi-don

Hi Onigiriman! It’s been 101 days since you joined Xanga… won’t you support us by going Premium?

These guys are tenacious! Has it been 101 days? I think this calls for something special… I know! How about continuing Twenty Questions? Hahaha! I’ve fielded 14 questions and some have nothing to do with me: either people already know too much about me, or they couldn’t give a sh*t. In any case, subscribers have had their chance and I will open the field to those who may be interested. BTW: I never wrote you couldn’t ask personal questions, just not embarassing ones… I also reversed the order ot the questions from the previousl post, most recent first. One more: Paiky scolded me counting a double post. I guess, “technically”, he has me, so Cultof Dizzo, if you wanna ask another question, go ahead.

Hamamoto: Do you think the death tax should be permanently repealed?

Posted 9/24/2003 at 11:07 PM. Okay, I’m stupid. What’s a death tax? Haha. J/k. I just play dumb since this would never affect me directly: my father doesn’t own a business and neither do I. It could, however, affect me indirectly. If you’re unfamiliar, the govt. levys a tax–as much as 55%–on business assets and property inherited upon an owner’s death. Since this tax is rather exhorbitant, many people who inherit a business (typically, small to medium size) end up having to sell their assets in order to pay the tax. An interesting point is that an estimated 0.65 cents is expended to collect every dollar. So while the govt. doesn’t really make a whole lot of money by collecting it, the inheritor loses a business, employees lose jobs, and the overall affect of the community in which the business it is/was located could be negatively affected–look at J-town. Whew. Too much heavy lifting. That’s 18.

Windward_Skies: What did you aspire to be when you were a kid?

Posted 9/24/2003 at 9:04 PM. Hmm. This might sound kinda negative, but I don’t ever remember aspiring to be anything. You hear of kids saying they want to be the president, a fireman, a baseball player. My greatest joy was music, but I guess I always new I would never be accepted. I watch TV, The Ed Sullivan Show, Hullabaloo, American Bandstand, and there was never an Asian to be seen anywhere. Actually, there was never an Asian anywhere, except within my immediate community. The only Asians were houseboys who cooked, did the dishes and laundry. And in the movies, they were either the evil Japs of WWII or phony Asians like Carlie Chan. Nothing to aspire to. Indeed, even the Asian women in moveis like Sayonara and Teahouse of the August Moon fall for white men, not other Asians. Rather disheartening, don’t you think? So I didn’t aspire to anything. All I knew is I had to do better than my dad. That’s 17.

BaBeEhGrL143: Oh man, your entry is hilarious. I could not stop laughing. That last question was a bit odd though. But still funny. I did the last question a bit insulting. “In your youth?” You are not that old. To be honest with you, you look very good for your age. Are you a issei? Nissei? Sansei? Just wondering.

Posted 9/24/2003 at 3:29 PM. I love easy questions. Sansei… But I love compliments even more. No, Purin_kun is a student of mne and know that I am quite old, at least from his perspective. when you’re 20-22 yeasr old, a person reaching the half century mark is understandably “old”. But its the heart, right? It’s how old or young you feel, right? Ne, ne, ne sou deshou? That’s 16.

lovingxmemories: What made you want to become a “Japanologist” as you answered before in Grom’s question?

Posted 9/23/2003 at 7:57 PM. I think you mena MattBlue? Anyway, it was more or less an accident. When I met that professor who changed my life, he taught human anatomy. It was cool, and I thought how cool it would be to be a doctor, particularly surgery. I wanted to major in Biology, but at UCLA transfer students had to have X number of unit credits of natural science before declaring a major in Bio or Chen, but i had to declare something so I thought, “Hey, I speak a little Japanese” and went with it. Haha, guess what? I found out I didn’t really know as much Japanese as I thought. So I started studying harder, learned the language, literature and culture and discovered that I found it fascinating, something I wanted to share with others. The rest is history…. That’s 15.

PaikyPoo: ok, u can’t double post questions and count them against the 20 questions… that’s a party foul. u must drink heavily for each foul anywho, my guestion is… if u could go back in time, what would u do differently in regards to female (or male) companionship? ie if there was a gf u let go of that u now wish u hadn’t, tell us the story. ahhhhh… dat brain fart felt good…

Posted 9/24/2003 at 3:38 AM. This is a matter that used to haunt me for a long time. If you’ve read my story, “Not Living Up to Expectations” then you might guess that the person is BA. She was–at least for me back then–virtually perfect. She was bright and intelligent: she has a Pharm.D. degree and the last time I talked to her–20 years ago!–she worked at UCLA Medical Center. She was talented. She was the lead female vocalist in our band, and she played piano. She could cook and sew and she accepted all of my friends without batting an eye lash. She was sweet and understanding and indulged me to a degree that is embarassing to admit now, but I will. Once she went out with her female cousin and I got upset; I was the jealous, possessive type–y’know, the stupid type. Well we got into a big argument. Later, I realized how stupid and childish I was and sorta felt guilty. The next day, even as I was genuinely down on myself, she came to the bank where I worked, and gave me a bag of my favorite cookies–home-made peanut butter–with a note stating how sorry she was and how it was HER fault… I almost died, and in fact it made me feel even worse. Of course, we made up, and I did everything I thought she would enjoy: I wined her and dined her, we went to see the show, “A Chorus Line”, then playing in LA, and a Toer of Power concert and assorted movies and anything I could to make it up to her. Alas, I was ever the idiot. As I wrote in NLUTE, I had and perhaps still have an identity crisis to deal with: being Japanese American. I had learned converstional Japanese and believed that speaking Japanese was a crucial part of being JA. BA did not speak Japanese, not even a little. And I eventually broke up with her in my futile attempts to seek the perfect companion. But if I could turn back the hands of time now, I would not. I am happy now. Musubi-chan is not perfect, but I have given up on perfection, in that her imperfections help me perfect myself. BA would have let me remain imperfect, I think, and as a result, I may never have grown, but she was such a loving and understanding girl… *sigh* Sexually speaking…. hehehe, never mind. This is 14.

HattoriHanzo: Who do you see in the top 5 of NCAA football 6 weeks from now?

Posted 9/24/2003 at 12:40 AM. Tough one. Top 5? In 6 weeks? Hmm. I don’t have a crystal ball but here goes… 1. Oklahoma. 2. Ohio St. 3. Florida St. 4. VA Tech/Tenessee. 5. LSU. Oklahoma should handle Texas. Ohio St won’t lose until they face Michigan. FSU and Miami is a toss up because they play at FSU. But I give FSU the nod because this is Miami’s year to leave the top five. And either VA Tech/Tenesee will beat Miami cuz after losing to FSU, Miami either look forward to Tenn and lose to VA Tech, or be so beat up after VA Tech, they’ll lose their first home game in years to Tenessee–My hope is that they’ll lose to all three teams. No ‘SC cuz in the next 6 weeks they play Arizona State, Notre Dame, Washington and Washington St. WSU is the only home game, the rest are away and one of these teams will beat them. If not then they deserve to be no. 2 or maybe 1. If Miami goes unscathed, they should replace Oklahoma as no. 1. That’s 13.

Purin_kun: Did you, in your youth, ever play the “Kancho Game?” It is very popular with my elementary school students, and has me scared sh1tl3ss (maybe a Kancho would help me out with that?).

Posted 9/24/2003 at 12:06 AM. Another winner! Kancho mean “enema” and that is why the kids are trying to stick their forefingers into the rear fold of someone else’s pants. But I’m not sure this is called a “game” per se. It is a form of horsing around. But I did not partake in thie particular type of entertainment, but I think it would be similar to what we used to call giving “melvins”. This entailed grabbing the center rear belt loop of someone’s pants and lifting him off the ground, thereby pulling the pants into the folds of the buttocks. The fun part was watching the recipient of a melvin trying to pull out the embedded fabric from between his butt. Better yet, and perhaps more in line with “kancho”, was “squirelling” which involved what squirels do best, searching and grabbing and squeezing “nuts”. It was a painful form of play, but hey, as many of the Ladies of Xanga have noted on their own sites, boys/men/males are stupid, and I cannot rebut… That’s 12

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