会津の三泣き (Thrice weeping in Aizu)

「会津の三泣き」という言葉があります。これは「会津に来たときはその閉鎖的な人間関係に泣き、なじんでくると人情の深さに泣き、去るときは会津人の人情が忘れ難く泣く」というもので、会津人の性格を表す言葉として知られています。
最初の「泣き」には、この地になじみのない人をひるませてしまうかもしれませんが、地域にとけ込むことで温かい人情が伝わってきます。

Source

They say that one cries three times when in Aizu.

The first cry is for the coldness of human connection

The second cry is for the deep human connection you get when you get used to things.

The third cry is for leaving the deep human connection that you can never forget.

Thoughts on Blue is the Warmest Color

I thought this was a boring movie. There are better coming-of-age foreign movies that have been made in the last 20 years. Oh my god, did I just say that? I suppose lesbian coming-of-age movies are in need of an update.

Full disclaimer, I read the graphic novel before watching the movie. So I’m already biased. I also read the reviews and lesbian reaction videos on Youtube. Still, I usually still watch the movie with an open mind, not really knowing what to expect.

So after watching the movie, I decided that the graphic novel was trying to tell a story of love between two people that was so overwhelming, *spoiler alert* one could die over it. Whereas with the movie, I felt that Adele had found her sexual soulmate who could fulfill her sexual desire and lust. The scene where she meets Emma again after she’s moved on, while it’s clear that Adele hasn’t, seemed desperate and very… helpless. However, in the book, Adele is also very desperate and helpless, but in a recluse drug abusing sort of way. But Emma comes out for her in the end, even though it’s too late. Also, 11 minutes of sex pretty much makes it hard to concentrate on anything else, so a romantic story of lesbians falling in love kind of goes out the window. It is the fantasy lesbian movie for gazers (I was going to put “male gaze”, but realized that even women can be creepy and gaze as well).

I think in both versions, Adele is a character that I hope never to be, naive and co-dependent, someone without a life of my own, someone who can’t grow within herself in a relationship. When you have a passionate and fiery relationship, you mostly think about never wanting to lose that person rather than how you can be a better person with them. If I ever do get with anyone again, that’ll be my priority.

New Years OC2 lesson

Today I had the kids tell me their favorite things about New Years and their least favorite thing. What ended up happening was they all told me one different thing about New Years, which is great because I learned a lot more about what they did, but it made it difficult to talk about one particular thing. I took a tally of their most favorite and least favorite things, and everyone unanimously liked eating mochi and getting new year’s money. The least favorite that they voted for was having too much time.

What I didn’t do that I wish I did in hindsight was use the last few minutes to get them to talk about why they liked eating mochi and what they’d use their new year’s money on. Instead, I rambled on about New Year’s Eve in America. We watch fireworks, watch the countdown on TV, and kiss someone at midnight. Probably the most exciting thing, if you’re lucky!

柳津七日堂裸詣り – Yanaizu Temple Visit of Nanokado

Here’s a summary of the Yanaizu Naked Temple Visit of 7th day Temple. It is a cold and suffering activity, but the bravery, faith, and free alcohol you need to attempt this feat should warm you up quick.

The sight of piled up, drunk man-flesh isn’t exactly something I’m dying to see, but I went to this event out of curiosity. While others might oggle over the fine butts, strong arms, and muscular chests, I found myself enjoying moments of positive energy and support for one another from some of the participants. I especially loved seeing the bond between young sons and their dads (or male figureheads). I watched as fathers would provide additional body footholds for their kids to step on, push their kids up with their heads, pulling them higher by their fundoshi.  These boys had to trust them not to allow them to fall, but they also had to trust themselves. This is not an easy activity, and the rope towards the end gets fatter and harder to grip because it’s too big for your hand.

At one point, a tall young guy, who looked particularly drunk, took a while to climb towards the top, but couldn’t get himself to make it. He hung there for a while, and eventually, but slowly slid down the rope, running into a young boy coming up after him. The man’s foot hit the boy’s face, and the man finally let go of the rope and fell to the ground. As he passed the boy’s father, the father whacked him on the head for being so inconsiderate for not letting go of the rope in the first place. The idiot could have kept himself going, or just dropped to the ground (it wasn’t that far up), but instead, he hung onto the rope, tired and drunk. Even the cold could not wake him up.