Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! In the absence of a proper turkey dinner, A. and I went to eat at the Italian restaurant across the street from my apartment. I've been intrigued by it since I moved in, since it's in the shape of a Swiss chalet with a bright orange roof. Japan actually does Italian food rather well, which is to say it only vaguely resembles the original but it's quite good in it's own unique way (which is more than can be said for their version of Mexican food, I hear.) I liked the cultural confusion of celebrating an American holiday with a Filipina at an Italian restaurant in a Swiss building in Japan. The menu itself was confusing, being the katakana forms of Italian, but I managed to order spaghetti with ham and small peppers. I'm usually not big on spicy things but it was delicious, though I managed to make myself cry once by biting directly into one. Dessert was green tea roll cake, which I have been looking for everywhere since one was described in pornographic detail in a novel I read. It lived up to my fantasies - though not a bit Italian, I suppose.
I'm preparing Christmas ornaments which I'll put up once December starts. I'm pretty proud of six personalized snowman, and a tree hung with pearls and diamonds cut from a jewelry edition of Time. How many Junior High Schools can say they one of those, huh? Curious fact about snowman - Japanese snowman or "yuki-daruma" are formed with two balls, and have a more child-feel than American. I'm told mine, with their scarves and black hats, have a "father feel." I'm also asked why on earth snow men would need scarves, but who am I to fight tradition? I'll post pictures once I stop being lazy and hook my phone up.
Never let it be said that television can't be educational. First of all, I didn't even know the word "pundit" before The Daily Show. Second, there's a page in the English textbook that's written in a newsflash format. "Can you read it aloud like a newscaster?" my favorite sensei asked, in her most difficult class where they run around all the time and never listen to her. I tried to remember acting lessons, failed, and finally blatantly imitated Stephen Colbert. "It's the type of story a reporter waits his entire career not to be able to report on." Trying to speak lower for that fake gravitas made my voice give out near the end, but it was enough. The children were so delighted that they repeated after me with proper volume and actually sat still the rest of the lesson. Ah, the educational power of comedy... And well, sometimes I just need a different taste of the holidays: