Browsing All Posts filed under »Culture shocks«

It’s about control.

October 14, 2017

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I had a great talk with a student last night. She is over 50, married and has a teenage child, and came in a bit late. We talked about her recent trip to the salon, where she had her hair dyed and treated with a wave. In the conversation, she said ‘I MUST dye my […]

Christmas in Japan

January 29, 2017

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Christmas in Japan HAPPENS, just like Halloween does. But here it’s different, just like Halloween. Japan is good at appropriating international things and making them its own. I’m writing this to share what Japanese people do that is different from what Americans and others do on the date/days surrounding December 25th. There are a lot of […]

You have to ask the right question, Neo

January 7, 2017

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This has happened to me before in Germany, and I wanted to write about it happening again, here in Japan. I’m not really sure how it happens or why. In Japan, I’m inclined to think that people ‘hear with their eyes’, as it is said: they see me being all foreign, so even if I […]

It’s just so GD American…

September 23, 2016

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I’ve been living outside of the USA since 2009, and I’m pretty certain I’ve changed a lot since I got on the plane to move to Germany. Of course, I would have changed just as much had I just stayed where I was, or even if I’d moved to Chicago, as I’d originally planned. But […]

I survived: the blaring summer heat at Tokyo’s Summer Sonic 2016!

September 15, 2016

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We decided to do shit right this time around, since Radiohead and Underworld headlined this year’s Summer Sonic in Tokyo and Osaka. We actually rushed and bought our tickets online while we were at the airport in January, waiting to board our flight to England. As soon as the tickets were available, we jumped on […]

The things I need to keep telling myself

July 31, 2016

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I go through phases where I have some serious, scary death dreams. Waking dreams like fantasies of my airplane crashing into the sea, or a suicide bomber deciding to hijack my airplane, or a massive earthquake striking Tokyo while I’m on the 20th (or 50th) floor of a building. I’m going to try to keep […]

In case of emergency

July 9, 2016

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In Japan, there are ‘in case of emergency’ measures in place just about everywhere. In the public toilets there’s a special button on the wall that is often confused with the flush button (also sometimes on the wall) by foreigners who can’t read Japanese. In my home, there are these funny circles that look like […]