Monthly Archives: January 2006

Don’t Speak

But what about the next one? And the one after that? And after that? I can’t catch them all, and the knowledge weighs heavily on my mind. When we’re young we can afford the luxury of constant self analysis and the comforting confines of reality, but the older we get, the more we have to accept the fact that an increasing amount of our world paradigm will be predicated not on fact, but on fictions we have unwittingly invented throughout our lives. I feel that disconnect from reality is endemic to the modern middle age condition and we can only hope to ameliorate its more vulgar excesses – however, we can never truly hold it off. One day we will open our mouths to speak something we swear is true, and it will be our children standing across from us, rolling their eyes and heaving an exasperated sigh at our ignorance and irrelevance.

Mochi made with sweat (and other stuff)

And wouldn’t you know it? As soon as I remembered this one simple tidbit from my childhood, everything suddenly fell into place. I had the answer.

What would a ninja do indeed?

He would get revenge.

Let them eat cake (and die…)

I wish for a second that pandas could actually breath fire, or at the very least, spit acid like an Alien.

What does he want me to do, DG?” I ask, voice emerging in ragged constricted packets.

“Well, he said he wants you to bring him an apology gift. Specifically he said he wants you to give him a cake or something. So I think perhaps you should go to his house and bring him a cake.”

I absolutely lose it.

Paper chase…?

“Well you see honey, ” I begin, eager to leap on the chance to explain “the lingo” and front like I’m from the ghetto (of, uh… Wisconsin) – “In tha’ hood, we sometimes use slang for common objects. So for example, we say paper when we mean “money”, right? So in this case, he’s paper chasing, so he’s chasing after money, trying to make some ends, that sort of thing. It’s talking about what he’s doing to try and make some money.”

Square root of wha…?

Oh. my. goodness. And this is supposed to help you remember something!? I need a mnemonic just to um, remember my mnemonic! Now if this was as simple as the one above – just using the on/kun readings of the characters, then it might – might – be useful. But what a mess! You’ve got characters which are read using the Chinese readings. You’ve got characters which are read using the Japanese readings. You’ve got characters are read using the abbreviated Japanese readings (na(na) for “7″). You’ve got other characters which are read using the roman alphabetical reading and yet another character (“0″) which has to be read both in English (“oh”) and in truncated (old-style) Japanese (“re(i)“)…!