Monthly Archives: April 2012

Being a Foreigner is a Pain, anywhere

Think of it as plastic memory, this force within you which trends you and your fellows toward tribal forms. This plastic memory seeks to return to its ancient shape, the tribal society. It is all around you—the feudatory, the diocese, … Continue reading

Posted in Buddhism, Hosso, Japan, Korea, Travel, Vietnam | 4 Comments

Learning a Language, Taking a Chance

(Multitasking: at work, “studying” Korean) So as readers know, I’ve been studying Japanese for long while. I am not “fluent”, but I can get by OK. Not great, but I can carry a (sometimes awkward) conversation, or get my way … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, JLPT, Korean, KPop, Language | 11 Comments

Good Advice in Latin

Something for a Friday, I think. I found in a book recently: Ut amēris, amēbilis estō! In order to be loved, be lovable! –Ovid, Ars Amãtõria, II, 107 Seems like good advice to me, in any language. People like to … Continue reading

Posted in Language, Latin | Tagged | 1 Comment

Understanding Buddhism as a Corporate Metaphor

I work in a large corporation now for the last 6 years as an systems engineer. I’ve moved offices many times and I’ve transferred around within the company (working in Dublin for example) sometimes. It occurred to me that this … Continue reading

Posted in Buddhism, Religion, Seattle | Tagged | 4 Comments

Kobo Daishi: Buddhist Superhero

On the lighter side of things, during our trip to Japan this year, we went to the temple of Kawasaki Daishi for Hatsumode, the first temple visit of the new year. Kawasaki Daishi is a pretty famous temple of the … Continue reading

Posted in Buddhism, Family, Religion, Shingon | Tagged | 4 Comments


Been feeling pretty jaded for a couple months now. I think this is also partly related to my recent post about not having any real accomplishments in my life. At first, I thought the problem was that I just needed … Continue reading

Posted in General, Japanese, JLPT, Language | 9 Comments

“Space Brothers” coming to the big screen!

I was very excited to hear from my wife a while back that one of my favorite Japanese manga, 宇宙兄弟 (uchū kyōdai) or “Space Brothers” is coming to the big screen in Japan. When I was first looking for Japanese … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomy, Japan, Japanese, JLPT, Language, Literature, Science | 5 Comments

Vegetarianism in Korea: Past and Present

Recently I read this interesting article from the Yonhap News Agency about the growing popularity of vegetarianism in Korea, but based on traditional dietary habits, not modern ones. In the past, I’ve talked about traditional diets in Japan, which also … Continue reading

Posted in Buddhism, Cooking, Health, Korea | Tagged | 6 Comments

Chinese Characters in Korean usage

Chinese culture has had a strong influence on Asian culture over the many centuries, and this is reflected in the writing systems. For example, when Korean society moved to use the Hangeul alphabet, Chinese characters or hanja (한자) were still … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, Korean, Language | Tagged | 2 Comments

Seaweed: Japanese and Korean style!

Unlike 20 years ago, it’s much easier to find seaweed food products in the West. I know, because when I was a teenager, sushi was new and hip and strange (remember the lunch scene from The Breakfast Club?), but now … Continue reading

Posted in Cooking, Health, Japan, Korea | 5 Comments