Biz trip to Europe – part 4

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I woke up with a start. I had no sense of how long I had been gone, but the bathwater was cold. The moment I got up, I threw up […]

Miss Nagai the killjoy

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The fellow assistant, Miss Yoshino, left the company and was replaced by Miss Nagai. She was 28 years old, small-build and round-faced, and while she wasn’t bad to look at, […]

Shame over empathy

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When I got home that evening, I called my parents. I cried and ranted about the injustice done by my bosses and my undeservedness of such treatment. It was intentional […]

Road trip 1999 – part 2

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We found out the following day that Grand Canyon was closed for winter for just one more week. Mark was disappointed, and I was devastated to miss the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. […]

Circles – part 1

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The other essential thing for new students to do was to join a “circle” or two. Circles were groups in which students engaged in sports/cultural/social events and activities. Waseda had […]

Essay on discrimination – part 2

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I asked the progressive reverend for help when I saw him for an English lesson at the church. The progressive reverend held an annual rock concert with local youth at […]

Mother – indifference

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Recently I asked my mother if she had known I had an eating disorder as a child. I told her that she might have thought I was faking, but I […]

Identity

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Being identified as a Japanese woman gave me so much shame. People call us “subservient” as if we are a punching bag. “Stupid,” “naive,” “meek,” “timid,” “loose,” are other descriptions […]

Truth as cliché

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I had been reluctant to talk about my truth. I feared that my truth, once spoken, may separate from me as an individual story, to be caught by others to […]