In with time expressions
In is a preposition of time. It can be used with:
- I’m going on holiday in May.
- I’ll next see you at Christmas in December.
- I think we arrived some time in June.
- In winter, it’s cold.
- I think this year I’ll have my holiday in summer.
- Mummy, do the leaves fall off the tree in spring or in autumn?
- I finished school in 2000.
- The Titanic sank in 1912.
- I grew up in the 1930s.
Times of day
- I leave home in the morning.
- I get home in the evening.
- I’ll see you in the afternoon.
- I can’t sleep at night.
The past, present and future
- In the past, people died much younger.
- You need to learn to live in the present.
- In the future, you’ll learn everything from videos.
When I read, I make many highlights and underlines. Usually these are new words, interesting facts, or thought-provoking quotes. I put the best of those quotes in a dedicated Evernote document, which I look at from time to time if I am feeling down or in need of inspiration; here are a few of my favorites from that file.
“The superior man is distressed by his want (lack of) ability.” –Confucius
“Freedom is not the absence of commitments, but the ability to choose—and commit myself to—what is best for me.” –Paulo Coehlo
“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray.” -Rumi
“The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances; if there is any reaction, both are transformed.” –Carl Jung
“Even if you fail at your ambitious thing, it’s very hard to fail completely. That’s the thing people don’t get.” –Larry David
“We are born here on Earth to fart around, and don’t let anybody tell you any different.” –Kurt Vonnegut Jr.
“The more you invest in yourself, the more other people invest in you.” –Unknown
“This sentence has five words. Here are five more words. Five-word sentences are fine. But several together become monotonous. Listen to what is happening. The writing is getting boring. The sound of it drones. It’s like a stuck record. The ear demands some variety. Now listen. I vary the sentence length, and I create music. Music. The writing sings. It has a pleasant rhythm, a lilt, a harmony. I use short sentences. And I use sentences of medium length. And sometimes, when I am certain the reader is rested, I will engage him with a sentence of considerable length, a sentence that burns with energy and builds with all the impetus of a crescendo, the roll of the drums, the crash of the cymbals–sounds that say listen to this, it is important.” –Gary Provost
This is totally nerdy but I heard this track on a Dark Souls live stream (a live stream on Twitch of someone I like playing Dark Souls 😛 ) and searched for it on Soundcloud right after. This is a sound I don’t usually listen to, but Lil Kuudere and his producer Sukoyomi really made something catchy and hard-hitting here and I can’t get enough of it recently.
I recently stumbled upon a series of short videos from an American TV show called “What Would You Do?”on YouTube. The premise of the TV show is basically to put actors in compromising situations and see if the people around them will intervene. The host, John Quinones, feeds information and directions to the actors depending on the situation. He also interviews bystanders and asks their opinion on the matter and why they did or didn’t speak up. The show covers a variety of controversial topics from racism to shoplifting and everything in between. The show also repeats many of the experiments with actors of different gender and races to see if the results change.
The following video is one of the tamer examples of “What Would You Do”:
In this video, we see an actress posing as a young, spoiled, wanna-be social media star. She and “her mother” go shopping at a clothing store and the girl proceeds to be rude and irritating to a shop clerk. The girl throws clothes on the floor and verbally berates the clerk and the store. Her mother does nothing to allay the situation, leading to an uncomfortable shopping environment for the shop’s patrons. While all the shoppers show their amazement at the girl’s behavior, a few women confront her and tell her to be kind to the clerk. Everyone breathes a huge sigh of relief when John Quinones steps in.
I would personally love to see this experiment done with a teenage boy. In America, we are bombarded with the trope of entitled, spoiled, rich girls. Entitled, spoiled, rich boys have yet to make an appearance (on Dr. Phil) so I wonder if the same amount of people would complain about his behavior.
Most people would say that they would stand up to someone who was bullying or otherwise treating someone unfairly. It’s heartwarming to see that so many people will take action in these situations, even if they are scripted.
Steal vs rob
Both steal and rob mean ‘take something without permission’.
Steal focuses on the object or the thing which is taken.
- Hey! Somebody just stole my phone.
- You once stole chocolate from a shop!
- She has completely stolen my heart.
Rob focuses on the victim of the crime.
- The men robbed a bank last night.
- Three guys robbed me while I was travelling home.
- She has been robbed three times this year.
Sometimes I like to look at Wikipedia’s List of Sports page, which lists different sports and games from around the world into over 100 different categories. These categories range from the more common like ‘Cue Sports’ (e.g., pool, billiards) and ‘Basketball Family’ to those that are less common and obvious like ‘Kite Sports’ and ‘Mind Sports’.
I could easily kill an afternoon or three trying to learn about every game and sport that’s ever been invented, but to start here are five I’ve chosen at random that I didn’t know about before:
Origin/Where it’s played: Central Europe, although many nations around the world field national teams
What it is: Five-a-side volleyball played on a large outdoor field. The ball must be hit using the arm or a closed fist. Teams get three hits to pass the ball back over the net, however the ball is allowed to bounce once on the ground before each hit.
Wikipedia fun fact: In 1927, almost 12,000 teams played organized fistball in Germany.
Origin/Where it’s played: Europe
What it is: It’s what the decathlon is to track and field sports, except with the racket sports of table tennis, badminton, squash, and tennis. In a match, players play one set in each discipline, moving from smallest racket to largest.
Wikipedia fun fact: As of June 2016, the International World Tour contains 23 events divided into six challengers, 12 International World Tour tournaments, two Super World Tour tournaments and three World Championships (singles, doubles and national teams).
Origin/Where it’s played: Argentina
What it is: A horseback game like polo, except teams are passing what is essentially a basketball with handles to one another, trying to throw it into the opposing team’s basket.
Wikipedia fun fact: Pato was banned several times during its history because of the violence—not only to the duck [which was originally used instead of a ball]; many gauchos were trampled underfoot, and many more lost their lives in knife fights started in the heat of the game.
Origin/Where it’s played: Japan
What it is: Similar to cross country running in the US, except the distances are much longer and it’s a team relay instead of an individual race.
Wikipedia fun fact: One of the most popular modern ekiden in Japan is the Hakone Ekiden, which features teams of 10 male students from various Japanese universities of the Tokyo (Kanto) region. This race from central Tokyo along Tokyo Bay, past Yokohama to Hakone and back is held over two days at the New Year, covering 219 kilometers. It is a popular spectator sport that draws large crowds (a million or more) along the whole route and receives full network television coverage nationwide over the two days.
Origin/Where it’s played: Finland, UK
What it is: 5-a-side soccer, except that it’s played in a muddy bog or swamp. There is no offside rule and the games consist of two 12-minute halves.
Wikipedia fun fact: The first organised championship was the 1998 Finnish championship and was the brainchild of Jyrki Väänänen, nicknamed “The Swamp Baron”. There are currently an estimated 300 swamp football teams around the world.
When I listen to an album or a song, the mood doesn’t matter as much as the sincerity of the art. While I tend towards exploring what are considered negative emotions or experimental and alienating fantasy scapes, I do love a good pop tune and I like something happy and uplifting as long as it sounds sincere to me and well, isn’t awful annoying garbage that chases a trend for a short-term cash grab.
Here’s a collaboration between a couple of my favorite artists (the producer Clams Casino and R&B goddess Kelela) that I found to be uplifting after getting through a bit of rough emotional territory in the verses. Goosebumps when the clouds part!
I woke up at four in the morning to watch the final half of the very exciting World Cup semi-finals match between Belgium and France. I was not disappointed. A lot of people I know were cheering for Belgium – they are ranked third in the world after all, but I went for France. I’ll just say it was a gut feeling. The next big game is on early tomorrow morning between England and Croatia. I will try to get up early again to watch it, but I have no gut feeling on this one. I watched a couple of England’s performances, but not Croatia’s. I would love to see a France versus England match, but who knows. Who do you think will win? England or Croatia?
I was inspired to write today’s blog because of the small dog grooming salon near Amic’s Shigenobu location. The salon’s windows advertises the many extra services it offers dog owners including: training, nail clipping, day care, and boarding. There’s a large window that always has many cute dogs snoozing in the sun or playing together. There’s an abundance of small, brown toy poodles and a few white shitzus. It seems to me that many people in Japan enjoy smaller dog breeds because they are so “kawaii”, but there’s so many types of dogs out there! When I return to the U.S., I would love to get a dog as well! Of course I like small, cute dogs as much as the next person, but maybe there’s a type of quiz that could help me find the dog breed of my dreams….
Turns out there is! Many popular dog food companies offer quizzes to help people find their perfect dog. This quiz from Pedigree asks questions ranging from “How much are you willing to spend a week to feed your dog?” to “Do you want a dog that will protect your property?” These are my top eight breeds according to Pedigree:
Wow! I have never heard of some of these breeds. I imagine they are all tiny and fluffy dogs because I stated that I live in an apartment with no yard. Let’s see what the next quiz offered by the American Kennel Club suggests:
I never pictured myself as a beagle gal, but, hey, the AKC is the American expert on dogs, right?
While I’m not sure these are the right dogs for me, it’s nice to have options! Some of these breeds I would have never considered without these quizzes. Plus, it’s a lot of fun to take a quiz that leads to such cute results! I want a dog now!!