Bebe Taian: The Weekender, Vol. 1

January 4, 2014

The Weekender, Vol. 1

I think this year, once a week, I should post a new segment called 'The Weekender'. It's a weekly post about nothing in particular every Saturday. Did I read a new book? Is there an interesting post to share? Cute red panda photos? And (in a nod to other blogs I read) a short weekend survey. This week...

THIS WEEK:

I've started reading Modern Passings: Death Rites, Politics, and Social Change in Imperial Japan (Andrew Bernstein).

So far, a fuller picture of cultural isolation in the Tokugawa era makes sense. Society was becoming unstable because of outside influences. While change is generally good, too much at once can derail an entire society. While the top officials were surely acting in their own interests, attempting to keep power to themselves, they were surely not fool enough to believe that the entire system of life falling apart in favour of new imported religions (Christianity) and practices was a good idea. At the same time, this isolation is what forced many Japanese to abandon Shintoism in favour of Buddhism, by national decree, regardless of personal beliefs, in order to prove that they were not 'allied' with foreigners. This is just from the beginning of the book. I can't wait to read more!

WEEKEND READING?

- A look at the kimono of first-generation immigrants (issei) from Japan: Japanese American National Museum
- OMG MUSHISHI IS COMING BACK!
- If you don't know what I'm talking about, you can watch Mushishi for free online.
- If you're looking for tabloid-style J-drama, you've found it here.
- I finally got a possibly working copy of Castlevania 3 for DH! And then found out that our NES doesn't work. Aaaugh! So, next project: working NES. I mean, his only lasted about 30 years...

SURVEY:

Did you have a New Year's celebration?
Nope. Worked all night, came home around 11:15pm, surfed the net, went to bed. Exciting, eh?

Is it snowing where you live/are staying?
Not in Florida. But we got some grey rainy cold weather! It's like snow, but not frozen!

Have you ever had osechi foods?
Not properly, not yet! I don't like black beans much, although I love various forms of mochi, so I'd like to learn to cook them for myself. "Japanese restaurants" around here are not particularly traditional, since there aren't many Japanese to support them.

Do you like daifuku? What is your favourite kind?
Peanut butter <3 Okay, that isn't traditional Japanese, but I really like peanut butter. I also love the azuki kind, but I still prefer my azuki paste in taiyaki form.

What is your Animal Year (Dragon, Snake, Horse, etc.)?
I was born when Fire Rabbits become Earth Dragons. This is possibly why I'm a taciturn person. >D I love running a business, being organised, and I don't tolerate foolishness lightly... but I also have a taste for expensive things, like kimono-collecting. I guess it's fortunate that I have the drive to make my own money to support my habits.

So, how about you?

Did you have a New Year's celebration?
Is it snowing where you live/are staying?
 Have you ever had osechi foods?
 Do you like daifuku? What is your favourite kind?
 What is your Animal Year (Dragon, Snake, Horse, etc.)?

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