Faux Pas Online

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Earthquake

We are fine. I was riding my bike when it happened. I was listening to Digable Planets. I felt like I wasn’t going anywhere. Then I heard the large Orwellian loud speakers spread throughout Japan and I looked up an saw the power line shaking and then I knew it was the Big ONe! I took cover in a parking lot area near Denny’s like restaurant. When things sort of returned to normal I rode my bike home as fast as I could watching out that power lines didn’t fall on me. None did!

I got home and secured all my belongings. My wife wasn’t home, she was with the kids and her grandfather at my sons preschool. They returned an hour later and we were relieved. Now it’s just aftershock, after aftershock and well there is always the nuclear reactor that could explode.

Earthquake

Jump to the beat

I’ve been teaching like crazy!

Now the school is taking off. Most of my students are very young like two years-old! Am I teaching or just playing Ronald McDonald?

It remains to be seen. They all seem to be enjoying it. I’m glad I stayed the course. In the beginning there were arguments and worse, as to what we should do, now it’s all about how much sleep we can get. Later I’ll be teaching my high school classes as well as trying to maintain the store. Well, I’m use to multi-tasking, welcome to Japan.!

I’ve asked a friend and fellow teacher to help contribute to school, of course he will be able to make money as well. He’s also busy and has a child on the way.

I like what I’m doing. If I could only get the phone to work. Where is my wife? Well, she is juggling a lot too.

Lost Wallet

JWH III

I lost my wallet while riding home from Kawaguchi station. I didn’t notice that it was gone until a day later. I panicked. It had happened to me before in America on the train. That time my wallet was returned to me by a guy who worked in a chocolate factory but my money was gone, still I got it back. This time in Japan, I got my wallet back including my money. I was shocked. In America I don’t expect anyone to return anything that is lost. In Japan, I had heard stories of people losing all sorts of things only to have them returned, everything included. In Japan a person may bring a lost item to the police station and then the police will contact you and well the returnee may request a gift. I called the person who returned my wallet but they didn’t want anything in return. My wife got a box of chocolates once.

I consider myself lucky this time. It could have been worse. Sometimes I’m doing so much, so fast, that I lose track of everything, including myself.

Only in Japan!

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The School

Faux Pas is starting to take off.

Last week I was busy with prospective customers and regular students. Students interested in joining the school get a half hour trial lesson and then if they want to continue there is a registration fee and then they are ready to begin. Of course the time of each lesson is also priced. Anyway I feel good.

Starting was the hardest part.

It’s all about organization as they say but I still have a long way to go. There is so much I’m learning and my wife is integral to the business because she helps me translate and talk to customers. The rest is up to me. I can’t believe it sometimes. I mean, I was in Japan for less than one year and I already started a business and had a good job. It wasn’t that easy though. It is a process and it was a struggle and there were arguments and setbacks but nothing in life comes without a struggle and patience and timing and perseverance and God.

The Park

Artiste

There is a park I frequent not too far from where I live in Kawaguchi. I often meet foreigners there like me.

We stand out.

I met a woman to today who’s husband is Japanese but she is from East Germany. I welcomed  her with the little high school German I remember. That started a whole conversation and an exchange of information. Like me she knows little Japanese. Welcome to Japan. She has been in Japan for about two years and was in Malaysia before moving to Japan. Like most expats we vented and compared and contrasted Japan with where we have been. I spent the rest of the of the afternoon watching my son dance and sing a long with Michael Jackson while watching This Is It.

Exile

I sometimes think of my life here in Japan as exile. How did I get here? It’s a long story but I’m here now and I’m building a foundation. I sometimes think of going back home but how I would do that would be so complicated now. I’m now a lone anymore. I have a family to think about.

Life here is fast but it’s controlled. I see people yearning to distinguish themselves but it all seems the same to me but someone could say the same thing about the U.S. because some Japanese people wonder howAmericans can live the way they do.

I don’t miss the violence.

Faux Pas Has Returned

January 26, 2011

I was out of commission for a while because I had to change hosting for my site but now that I’ve sorted that out I’ve returned. A lot has happened. At the present moment I’m in Japan with my family and I’m teaching but on the side I make music, especially beats. The process has been slow but I’m making the most of it. I’m also a writer and I’m working on some projects but again it’s a process.

Former French Embassy

Living in Japan has been challenging but I’m making the most of it. Japan is exciting but it is also complicated because of  the language barrier. This is something I hope to overcome soon. I spent the last four years of graduate school studying Spanish, Now i have to learn Japanese.  I work at a private elite boys school in Tokyo but I also teach private lessons to adults and children and on top of all of that I manage a small language school, art gallery and cafe´. Teaching is moving fast but other aspects of my business are moving slow. Everything that happens is a learning experience. There is so much I can say. Now that children have been thrown into my mix it gets further complicated but I love being a dad.

Being far away is crazy, which I’m sure anyone who has lived abroad can understand. When I look at what is happening back home politically it seems scary because for the most part and this is my opinion, people live comfortably in Japan. Many Japanese are in awe of the social problems that exist in America but Japan is not without its problems. The pace of life here is fast and yes things are expensive. I think people here know how to be comfortable but they don’t know how to relax. Everyone seems to be in a hurry and I try my best not to get on the same treadmill. Social relationships are also complicated but after becoming aware of how complicated they can be you start to find your niche.