A dusky lace of sadness overlays my thoughts every time I smile at an English word spelled or created charmingly.

I smile at the “Fancl House” clothing store and remember how many in Tohoku are still freezing with clothes washed away.

I smile at “Crunky” chocolate, “Cream Collon” cookies, “Melty Kiss” sweets, and “Creap” coffee creamer, and I think of how much food has been destroyed and contaminated.

I smile when a “grobal” strategy meeting is announced or a coworker tells me he’s set up a new “holder” (folder) for me on the server, and I remember how many have lost their livelihoods and families.

I also remember the looks of repressed smiles when I’ve said “mijikai” (“short,” opposite of “long”) when I meant “hikui” (“short,” opposite of “tall”) or “go out [on a date, etc.]” when I meant “exit.” Or when I just plain speak Japanese gibberish, garnering me those politely confused faces, heads gently cocked to the side.

Another 7.0 aftershock near Fukushima yesterday, on the month anniversary of the tsunami. I met with Kando-san today, and he told me that a big aftershock came exactly one month after the Kobe earthquake of 1995, too.

About July McAtee

American gal turned Japanese "salaryman" for a while. I'm blogging my experiences as my daughter and I move from Silicon Valley to Japan and beyond.
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2 Responses to Words

  1. Bill McAtee says:

    Words don’t have meaning; people give words meaning–sometimes with common understanding and sometimes not. Creativity is random; looking at one thing and seeing something else–like turning armadillos into butterflies. a weegem

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