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insufferable blowhard

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joined 2022 September 04 19:24:43 UTC

The things you lean on / are things that don't last

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User ID: 107


insufferable blowhard

1 follower   follows 14 users   joined 2022 September 04 19:24:43 UTC


The things you lean on / are things that don't last


User ID: 107

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Interesting! Thanks for the insight.

I am not sure which errors you're referring to and it would be helpful if you would point me in the right direction.

I would agree that that is also my experience. It's hard to tell though. There's no secret handshake as far as I know that says "I am not a progressive" but I do know people will withhold.

Gonna leave it a mystery are we? I can keep guessing....

Interesting. I hate tats but it's a personal thing and I hesitate to make grand generalizations. Or, I don't hesitate, I make them, but I realize that's what they are.

Let me guess: Caduceus?

She's an immunologist. You're going to have to go a bit further to convince me that she shouldn't be taken seriously than to say that you remember she was laughable. I realize there is a pretty strong anti-COVID-vaccination crowd here.

That's a very apt way of putting into words my own suspicions, but I keep thinking there must be more out there, something I've missed or have misapprehended.

Hard to say. I'm certainly typically more sober earlier in the day. Also there must be some rancid oil or something in the early morning that maybe is taken out or otherwise disposed of in the evening. I don't think I'm alone in thinking the smell can be quite strong, but it may be that the smell is also quite different at these differing times.

Our neighborhood 自治会 jichikai is a rotation of families or family representatives. My wife was in the first one and it hasn't come back round to us (it's a big neighborhood, or maybe they skipped us). We got them to do Halloween for about 7 years then COVID hit and it was cancelled, then cancelled again, and now the kids who did it are aged out. There are little kids now in newer families but I have doubts that particular American way of celebrating a day that has no real significance here will ever be resumed. Maybe they're afraid collectively that we'll make some other weird suggestion. To answer briefly, no we don't go. They made a rule preventing kids from playing with balls anywhere in the street, however, which I think was idiotic, so maybe it's for the best.

Wake up, post something nostalgic about my own late father on Instagram, watch my wife whisper to my sons who whisper in testy teenage barks back, then wait patiently until one of them (the youngest) unearths a gift and hands it to me (this year a brown jinbei which I was immediately told to only wear inside.)

Happy dad day to all the dads.

Nothing, but I have Donald Kagan's The Peloponnesian War next up, and right there beside my bed. Anybody read it?

Face tattoos signify a rather fundamental disengagement with the norms of greater society such that I can't imagine becoming great buddies with anyone who has one. This is true to a lesser degree of full sleeves, etc. This is true in or out of Japan.

Sensible shoes or sneakers worn with business attire on commutes suggests a comfort in the wearer with his/her social standing. (Dress shoes on the same commute could suggest the opposite but context is relevant).

Anyone 24 or younger on my early morning commute is going home, not to school or work (unless of course they are in athletic gear in which case it's off to sports practice before school). Exceptions include regulars, or people with large roller bags (small roller bags could still be going home.)

Within Japan, expatriate women from North America (US and Canada) or Europe are either: 1) Divorced 2) married to or the consort of a Japanese man. 1) Will be politically progressive 2) will be neutral, disinterested, or conservative

Women with crewcuts are lesbian.

Guys with little hair but big bushy, Zeus-like beards will eventually annoy the shit out of me.

The likelihood that females with long, really done-up fingernails working at afternoon retail fashion outlets in Umeda are also moonlighting as call girls is non trivial.

The bigger and more expansive the menu the more likely the food is mediocre but probably not terrible. (Depending on your definition of terrible.)

The allure of the smell of ramen shops is inversely related to the hour of day-- meaning in early morning the smell is revolting. Late night, enticing.

The degree to which an American male tends to adhere to modern fashion trends is a reasonable predictor of how politically left he leans.

If I close my eyes before being introduced to your American female cousin visiting Japan, I will predict that she: 1) looks older than her age 2) is overweight by 20 or more pounds 3) leans politically left 4) eats more than I at lunch and dinner.

People who keep their calendars updated and full are higher achievers than those who don't. Not always true of artist types.

Creative, artistic people are creatively artistic in multiple ways.

Guys with houses that are like pig pens do not get laid. Unless they are extremely rich.

The chance that the Rolex watch on the dude riding the train is fake is at least 50%. The Omega is probably real.

New acquaintances who are overly friendly want something from me.

Women who are obsessed with and routinely post on social media about the plight of animals do not themselves have children.

Criticizing a woman directly about anything is a mistake that will not produce favorable results.

Besides the obvious that Kennedy is not yet decrepit or senile, and is not Trump, what would cause people to prefer him? I've read at least one damning review of him from a source I've no reason to distrust.

The first rule of reddit since around 2018 has been that if the post is a matter of opinion and is massively upvoted, it's probably an ill-conceived and kneejerk adherence to the most stereotypical, un-nuanced progressive norms. If the same is true but it is a matter of fact, the upvoted post may or may not be true but will have no sourced links as support. Reddit has lost all credibility for me except niche DIY subs or anything related to anything practical, where bad advice is usually immediately called out as such.

Any of the people you listed (Japanese, non-Japanese such as a Japanese American, etc.) would be welcomed in these areas if they had been invited or if hey had themselves made reservations at a teahouse. This would be relatively rare, I expect, because unless one speaks Japanese quite well the whole experience of sitting and being entertained by a geiko would be quite mystifying and wasted. Like a deaf person given a ticket to a symphony. It would be largely pointless. I know an American who used to frequent the tea houses and sit with the mamas--he was a filmmaker and photographer and for whatever reason they took to him. He spoke, as far as I knew, little Japanese, but somehow communicated and even came out with a few books of photography for the girls working at the time (upwards of 15 years ago now.) So someone like him, he would be allowed around. It's the clueless influencers who want to livestream their walk through geisha-land for their gazillion followers who are unwelcome. Or anyone just there "to look."

Anyone not there at the teahouse by teahouse invitation would constitute a tourist. Which is to say, foreigners or non-Japanese are not prohibited in principle qua being foreigners or non-Japanese, but if the purpose is to take photos and gawk, one would be considered a tourist. If one has a teahouse reservation, etc., of course entry would be permitted, regardless of nationality.

I wonder if Asian tourists will populate the Expo. Probably some. I don't know how many. I think a lot of Chinese come over just to do shopping, and not necessarily much else. (I am making this up; I don't actually know.) Do you have tickets already? I think there will be many, many Japanese there, as it's certainly something heralded locally as a thing to go to.

Japanese tourists have high expectations, but everyone understands what those are and interactions tend to be smooth. The issue with non-Japanese is often not that they are barbaric (though some, of course, are) but it's like a game of Ice Hockey and suddenly a team shows up geared to play tennis, or rugby, or Calvinball. A lot of scrambling and confusion.

Anyway I live on the outside of Osaka, and I pass through the city regularly. Perhaps like ships we will pass in the night. Or afternoon.

I have heard people sneer as you say. This does not mean I agree with them. I worked retail for years when in school, I waited tables, I was a clerk at a gas station/convenience store, I was a bartender, I once was a floor waxer, I used one of those blowers to clean leaves, I have done all manner of such work. Some of the most interesting human interactions I've ever had were in such jobs. As far as I'm concerned these jobs constitute honest labor, and, as my dad would have said, build character--I do not feel similarly about barflies, beggars, or (common?) prostitutes. I found it jarring that you lumped them together. You may of course disagree and that's fine.

Wait retail clerk and prostitute are equally shunned? I feel so out-of-touch.

In Japan, after the long dark of tourist-free COVID and with a yen at its weakest in almost 40 years, the throngs of visitors have returned. With a vengeance.

Issues include: People dropping their garbage in various inappropriate places (including Mt. Fuji, which you now must pay to climb, as well as anywhere else since public garbage bins are not particularly common in Japan), overcrowding tourist spots or places near tourist spots (like parking lots), harassing geiko (geisha) by aggressively demanding photo ops, and generally poor form..

I read an article recently (written by a Japanese guy) that this is all Japan"s fault. <- This is in Japanese but a good summary is in this X thread.. Basically the argument is that when Japan began stressing the term omotenashi in its bid for the Olympics, a term which basically means "generous hospitality," the idea on planet earth suddenly became that Japanese are pushovers and you can come here, kick up your feet, and be served warm sake by subservient and obedient Japanese hosts, we are at. Your. Service. Thus people, armed with this knowledge, arrive in hordes to take advantage.

I think the above argument, while you have to give it kudos for being self-flagellating in the best Japanese sense (while also slightly condescending and arrogant--because do foreign visitors really look up and try to understand esoteric terms like omotenashi? I wouldn't think so.) is somewhat off the mark.

What it boils down to is Japanese manners and customs are simply less boisterous in most contexts than those of the visiting cultures. So people talking in normal voices on trains is somewhat nerve-wracking. People walking three or four abreast down a busy sidewalk is outrageous. And of course manhandling Kohana-chan on her way to the teahouse because damn this is an Instagram moment if ever there was one, is, yes, a bit gauche.

But it's pretty bad. Shinsaibashi is like Chinatown on steroids. You see lines 2 blocks long to get into Hermès and Rolex, though the Richard Mille shops still seem quiet and relatively unpopulated. I hear more Korean in some areas than Japanese.

Anyway so far it's just a matter of Japan being--inexplicably--unprepared for a large number of international travelers. Solutions have not been particularly inspired. In Kyoto they simply do not let tourists enter certain sidestreets in Gion.. I expect the bottom-line folks are loving it, but the regular Japanese in most areas do not. Kyoto is, for me, at least on the normal circuits I would traverse, no longer very pleasant. But then I'm a tetchy ass.

My Wicked, Wicked Ways: The Autobiography of Errol Flynn

I don't know how helpful what I'm about to write will be, but I do write it in an attempt to be helpful and I'm not trying to be an ass.

Stop thinking about it. I know, that is really shitty advice, but let me expand on it.

When I was growing up in the 80s the prospect that we would all be annihilated by a nuclear strike was very real. It was spoken of by newscasters, it was the main plot line of many t TV shows and films , it was the subtext in many others.

And do you know how my generation dealt with that? We just didn't think about it. At all. We did not hold that fear in out minds, regardless of perhaps how much the popular media wanted us to do so. "In Europe and America there's a growing feeling of hysteeeria." sang Sting, But all we talked about was the way he pronounced hysteria.

There was a large white structure in the middle of nowhere out in the bumfuck area of the county north of mine, like way out in the Styx. I found it because I had a convertible and used to go on inordinately long drives. My friend and I convinced ourselves this was a missile silo, making us both inhabitants of a town at the center of liftoff and probably a target of a blast. And then we got a pizza and ate it in an unused parking lot.

I don't think we truly believed it was a silo. Or maybe we did. I know we didn't care that much. It didn't matter. If it was, it was, and if the bombs fell, they would fall. But it's always been like that. At least we weren't living through the 30s and 40s. I mean it could have been far, far worse.

What I'm saying is that I am not saying the issues you reasonably bring up are not reasonable. (Edit : Wha? I can't believe I wrote that sentence.) I won't try to argue you out of believing them. I will suggest that diverting yourself into the people and world around you (not in this Mottespace, but around you in what I still call the real world) may be helpful.

As usual my train has arrived and I have to book it to get to my next one. Sorry. If this is helpful, great. If not, I hope you work through this ennui, this, well, pondering.

Personally I think it's bunk. Even in this link there is a link to a consultant who will presumably provide some monetized advice / relief to the afflicted. Show me the multiple studies supporting this hypothesis and I'll consider it.

Whenever these kind of vague "syndromes" involving many complex systems are quantified as X thing caused by Y, my bullshit meter goes off.

I'm afraid I'm not the guy to ask, but I can ask around.

My powers have failed me.