Skip to content


The Three Japanese Cultures

Hi!  It’s been a while since I posted here, so I have a lot to say.  Truth be told, I don’t really think I’m fond of the blogging method of expressing myself, but I haven’t come up with anything better yet.  I’m working on it, though!  First, an update. The Lily project (, in case you didn’t know) is almost a year old now!  In that time, the story has progressed from a sweet but confused girl who didn’t know who she was, to a sweet but confused girl who… Read More »The Three Japanese Cultures


Kawaii may be the only real Japanese word many people know. And they really don’t know what it means. It’s usually translated as “cute”. And that’s one of the meanings, for sure. Maybe it’s even the primary meaning. But that’s not really what it means. They actually have another word for cute, “aikurushii” which seems to have a more pure meaning of “cute”. Not pure innocence-wise, but it seems to be more of a direct translation to our word “cute”. I think a better translation of kawaii is “childlike”. That’s… Read More »Kawaii

The Shallowness of Japanese Culture

I promised in an earlier post that I would stop complaining about things I don’t like about Japan or Japanese culture. I am keeping that promise. This post is not intended to be as much a criticism about Japanese culture, as using that topic as a springboard into a deeper discussion of two of my previous posts: The Shallowness of Fun and What is Love?. This particular topic, of course, is a difficult one to write. I want to be objective without being judgmental. And that’s a difficult line to toe.… Read More »The Shallowness of Japanese Culture


Let’s get back to basics, I suppose. From the very moment I began learning Japanese, and even before, I became aware of a specific breed of person – one that I instinctively had very little respect for. This type of person was called a “weeb”, which is short for “weeaboo”. There are many different characteristics of weebs, but the primary characteristic is a kind of escapism in to Japanese pop culture. I’m trying to find a way to express it that’s not horrifically insulting, but you get the type. Basically… Read More »Weeb

I Think I Messed up.

… but I’m not sure I could have done it any differently. This blog originated with a single premise: a Gaijin learning Japanese. Not much more to it than that. I was learning Japanese, about the Japanese culture, and for some reason I wanted to share it. Probably something to do with ego and a misplaced idea of what people might be interested in reading, but here we are. This was at least two years ago, probably closer to three. As I started learning Japanese, I learned about their idol… Read More »I Think I Messed up.

Japanese Culture: The Seduction of Exoticism

Over the past few years, My thoughts on Japanese culture have taken a very definite arc. I started out with a general sense of admiration, but then decided that I wanted to learn more about their language and culture. I immersed myself into learning as much as I could about it. Unlike some “Otaku” or “Weeaboo”, I always kept a sense of balance about it, but there was always this kind of undefined yearning that I couldn’t quite place. I’ve never been to Japan, but for some reason, many things… Read More »Japanese Culture: The Seduction of Exoticism

“Work Hard, Play Hard”?  Run.

I have something that many people seem to consider a personality flaw – but less so as I grow older. When I was a child, I believed it was important to have “professional” relationships.  Specifically, when I would go to an event where a specific thing was to happen, I would go expecting to do that specific thing.  Bible Studies?  I went expecting to actually open a Bible.  Basketball practice?  As bad as I was, I went expecting to throw a basketball.  I was never very tolerant of tomfoolery. I… Read More »“Work Hard, Play Hard”?  Run.

Vtubers confuse me

So lately, I’ve found a subset of Japanese culture called vtubers. This really wasn’t voluntary, and they confuse the snot out of me. As near as I can tell, they are different anime-like characters that are voiced and acted by real people, they have different personalities, and they stream. Like, a lot. And people seem to like them. A lot. Now, let’s be clear: I understand this, a little bit. My favorite vtuber at the moment (and I hope I don’t watch enough of it to change my opinion, frankly)… Read More »Vtubers confuse me


My first exposure to Japanese was watching idol group variety shows, so I guess it’s somewhat forgivable that that is generally the lens through which I see Japanese culture. Their culture, as it currently is, is defined by a mishmash of their own culture and language and some very powerful foreign influences that have completely reshaped their culture over the past hundred years or so. But I was reminded that theirs is a much more ancient culture than ours, and to define their culture by how it currently appears is… Read More »Ancient


I heard a story. This is a story that appeared on one of the Reddit subreddits that are dedicated to stories.  It could have been MaliciousCompliance, or ProRevenge.  I can’t remember.  It’s not important. Our protagonist was working at a Japanese company somewhere in California.  The managers there were Japanese nationals, and the employees were gaijin.  As far as the Japanese managers knew, no one there could speak Japanese. So they basically ran roughshod over everyone.  It finally came to a head when a manager who had it in for the… Read More »Gaijin