Sunday, March 29, 2009


For those of you trying to track my day to day movements through this blog, I've got a few older posts half written that I hope to put up some time this week. Unfortunately, even these mindless, rambling descriptions of my life take a while to type. I'm still not entirely sure how I feel about blogging, but it definitely can be a time waster.

A few observations as I approach the two month mark:

*I've become accustomed to being the tallest person around. When I occasionally encounter someone taller, it weirds me out. There's kind of a moment of vague surprise followed by the self-conscious realization of the cause. It's really strange. Similarly, when I cross paths with other gaijin in Bunkyo (which is fairly uncommon), there's often a brief moment of eye contact before we go back to pretending that we totally fit in here. I'm wondering if my first few days after leaving Japan will seem really weird.

*I have an annoying tendancy to adapt my speaking patterns to people around me. Like after a trip back to Missouri, I'll often notice that I've picked up some new phrase that I will from then on utter with disturbing regularity. Mostly, the language barrier makes this a moot point here. However, the other day I was eating with a couple of the guys from work and noticed that I was often dropping 'a's and 'the's and generally bastardizing the English language with my responses. While I'm sure limiting my vocabulary helps some of the less fluent English speakers, I don't think there's any advantage to my modified grammar. Except to probably make me unintentionally sound condescending.

*I have started using a drawn out 'ehhh' type sound to express confusion/surprise. It's kinda hard to type, but I'm generally amused by the Japanese conversational versions of 'ums' and 'uhs'. When trying to read things, I would sometimes 'ehhehhh' to myself (b/c I'm easily amused). Then I noticed that I started doing it unintentionally. I probably sound like a moron to everyone else, but I'm still amused by it and hope I maintain this speech pattern.

*When I first arrived I was completely immune to the temperature b/c it was so much nicer here than Boston. There were a couple times early on that I'd wear just a Tshirt and everyone else had winter coats on. But then Tokyo had a warmer stretch, I adjusted and am now forced to wear a jacket even if it's not freezing outside.


  1. I want an example of a sentence when you drop the a's and the's. And, dude, you got nothin' but time to blog. :)

  2. So after you've been back to Missouri, do you start saying such phrases as "of an evenin'" or is it "we was.."? You never heard those at home!