Miscellany: wishes, dreams, tacos

  • One of the wishes-on-a-scrap-of-wood I saw at the shrine in Kamakura last week read, in full, "May I make my debut as a novelist while still in high school." So that's how all those kids keep winning the big prizes.
  • Leah Dizon, the "black ship"* of Japanese gravure, has a blog, and it's bilingual. Actually, it's an intriguing code-switching pastiche: the impression we are supposed to get, I think, is that she writes it in English (at the bottom of each post) and somebody translates it to Japanese for her (the top). But her English (let's just assume that she actually does write it) is sprinkled with Japanese, which ranges from completely OK in context; through OK in principle but strange in context; all the way to erroneous. (Examples of the last category are mostly the kind of minor mistakes that everyone makes when they start learning Japanese: ureshii da yo, etc.) The translator then has to decide what to keep and what to fix.
    It's tough: they want her to come off fun, exotic and cute, but not mockably bizarre or awkward, so the decisions they make can be interesting. When "Mita koto nai! Ita koto nai yo! IKITAI YO! GET! GET! GET!" becomes "見たことも行ったこともない!行きたいよー!ゲット!ゲット!ゲット!", they've fixed a spelling/pronunciation mistake, smoothed out some syntax, and left in "GET! GET! GET!" -- which makes their version ("ゲット!ゲット!ゲット!") a Japanese translation of an English imitation of a Japanese usage of an English loanword. (On the other hand, elsewhere, "YUME! GET! GET!" is de-frenzied to "夢を手に入れよう!") If Japan-fronting overseas models becomes a bigger industry, there'll be a thesis in this.
  • From the "sounds like a dirty euphemism, is an innocent eatery" files:
* N.b.: Not a member of the crew, which was apparently 90% wolfman.

Popularity factor: 4


I thought she might be half Japanese, but according to her profile she's "half French half Filipina." She looks a lot like the half white half Thai women you see on Thai TV all the time.


So that's how all those kids keep winning the big prises.

Oh, come now. This is taking that Commonwealth -ize/-ise thing just a bit too far.


Adamu: I don't know from Thai TV, but yeah, it seems like her only connection to Japan before coming here was regular ol' anime nerdery. Although I seem to recall hearing that she worked as a race queen in the states... I didn't even know they HAD those over there. Like at Nascar?

Brian: The really embarrassing thing is that I'm trying to standardize my spelling on American style (why fight it?). Fixed...


Matt: No worries. I was just amused. (And if Jane Austen can write "surprize"...)

I had never heard of her, but some searches reveal that she wasn't a race queen but a spokesmodel (car-show booth babe, perhaps, and bikini model for the magazines) in the import-car modification scene. That doesn't overlap much with the Nascar fan culture.

Comment season is closed.