Posts Tagged ‘secret’

Ask and Ye Shall Receive

2011年 9月 14日

Being thrown curve balls of all manner, including a police interview regarding the apparent murder at one of my schools, so can’t yet get back to proper (excessive) posting frequency. After the move on Saturday, and the lag in getting internet connected at the new house, I should have an extra 20 hours a week to fill. I plan to use half of that for sleep, and a significant portion for late paperwork, but perhaps a portion can be used to fill these pages with tastes of my life in Japan.

Readers have made considerable requests for more of my photography and I hope to oblige. Various standards and rules prevent me showing certain works under consideration for contests; however, there is plenty of material otherwise uninhibited. Dog on Board (original)Here is a photo I took in Ise-Shima while on a photo trip with my chapter and a chapter from Nagoya. There was a surfing contest at this beach, but the waves were small: and the surfers, bored; which is a recipe for amusing behavior. This French bulldog really had a fascination with the board.

I was initially drawn to the scene because a number of senior members were shooting furiously from the bow of the board. As I moved quickly down the beach, I was approaching from the side; which is generally considered less favorable, but the dog cooperated by facing my direction. To date I have seen no other works including the dog on the board, so I may have been lucky with the angle. Odd angles seem to be my way (which could be a future post).

My friend who has been encouraging me in my Ubuntu usage, also impresses upon me to make use of GIMP for editing my photos. Even though an artist friend has made other software recommendations, the generally utility and free price of the GIMP make it very attractive. Dog on BoardHere is an image from the same photo with some intense color enhancement, which is only possible due to learning about more of the powerful selection tools in GIMP. Early color enhancement efforts would leave the dog looking yellow, or both the dog and board a bit blue. Here, I was able to make the yellow on the board stand out and change the almost murky water into a bright blue without damaging the dog’s appearance. Yet another critical point is that I could also keep the breaking portions of the wave looking sharp crystalline or white.

Ultimately this photo can’t be used for the Tsu Exhibition this year: not sharp enough to enlarge to zenshi-size; no other subjects to tie this to reality; and doesn’t include the board tip among other points. I will be submitting a photo this year and it will be one with the dog, but you’ll have to wait for more on that. Perhaps it can be my Christmas present to you all.


Sunday Soundcheck 36

2009年 2月 8日

We can start the ‘N’ column of the Japanese sound chart this week. The first sound is na, written in hiragana as な and katakana as ナ. The ‘n’ sound is pretty much like English and the ‘a’ part is, of course, the same as it was for a, ka, ga, sa, za, ta, and da in the previous columns. Today let’s just say, it is like when the doctor tells you to open your mouth and say, “ah.”

Like the other soundchecks, I will try to find words that start with na that don’t normally appear in textbooks, regardless of the fact that they are commonly useful.

Natoriumu (ナトリウム) means ‘sodium’ and comes from the Latin name ‘natrium’ from which we get the atomic symbol Na. Cooks, nutritionists, athletes, chemists, and engineers alike should be able to put this one to use.

Naisho (ないしょ・内緒・内証) means ‘secret’. Nuance here seems to be ‘personal’ or ‘on the sly’, this sort of thing comes up in Japan a lot, so this word gets used a lot.

Natsubate (なつばて・夏バテ) and nanohana (なのはな・菜の花) are bonus words for this week. Both of these are words I wrote about in the past… or at least I thought I had, but my search engine finds no reference to them. (Perhaps I’ll have to take care of that.) The former is a condition caused by hot, humid summer weather. Lack of sleep because of all the noise that comes into a house with all the windows open; and loss of weight caused by the loss of appetite from running hither and thither in the oppressive conditions. The latter is rape blossoms, a springtime delicacy. Drop by your favorite tempura shop in the spring and order up some rape blossoms. Then you’ll know if they are a good shop or not. Mmmm… haru no aji.