Doopa? What’s a Doopa? Shorthand for doodle pad? What’s that got to do with hair?

In class the other day, my partner accidentally kicked me somewhere she shouldn’t. It didn’t hurt and we had a good laugh, but I continue to be grateful that I’m not a boy.

Update October 29: According to the online Urban Dictionary, Doopa means butt in Polish. Now I’m even more confused. One hardly ever sees hairy butts in Japan.


Kitty Woes

Purina did good, but only for a day or two.¬† Plato stopped eating again and keeps losing weight. He’s lighter than Dana now, especially because she gets to eat all the treats he won’t touch anymore.
I did some more research and, as much as I don’t want his possibly last days to be filled with hateful memories, it looks like force feeding is about my only option. And I remembered how much he loved kitten milk when he was little, so we went to the pet store and got milk, a baby bottle and a syringe I can use to stuff soft food down his¬†throat. While we were there, we were admiring a very lively American shorthair kitten and the store guy asked me if I’d like to touch it. (Stupid question.) I picked it up and gave it a cuddle and it gave me the sweetest little purr I’ve ever heard. (Plato’s is sweet in a more literal way–pure chocolate syrup–but I haven’t heard it in a while.) Rochi looked stunned when the supplies came to nearly $50, so I said, “Yeah, but I just got to touch a $1500 cat.”
When we got home, I made Plato drink a serving of milk and so far at least he hasn’t barfed. We’ll see. I have hope.

Granny Phone

Pet peeve #3647: Smart phones. I hate them. It was bad enough being sandwiched between annoying people on the trains as they tapped away with their thumbs sending text messages. Now I get sandwiched between annoying people flailing their fingers about and looking rather spastic. It gives me the creeps.

PENTAX DIGITAL CAMERAMy phone is not Smart. My phone is Stupid. It’s a Granny phone. My service provider is changing their system or something and everyone has to get new phones. The only free ones are huge and hideous or ones that are specially designed for old people—easy to use, large characters. Mine even has a built in pedometer so I can make sure I get enough exercise. It probably has a function to automatically call an ambulance if I’ve fallen and can’t get up, but I can’t find my bifocals so I can’t read the manual. Anyway, it’s 5:00. Time for dinner, Jeopardy, and off to bed. Where did I leave my dentures?


Here’s something I hadn’t done in a while.

I had forgotten how nice baby fingers feel when they’re wrapped around your neck…and how nice it feels to take a shower and remove the drool when baby goes home.

Maki is an incredibly sweet 9 month old who wants to be held all the time. She can’t stand up on her own yet, so she sits on the floor and raises her arms in that please-pick-me-up-now gesture which I am incapable of resisting.

Ma said she thought I was autistic when I was a baby because I didn’t want anyone to touch me. Some things we never grow out of.

Thumb Twiddling

Pet peeve #4627: Guys who wear their keys on the outside of their pants, like there isn’t enough noise in the world already. Maybe they do that because they can’t afford red sports cars.

Goofy t-shirt of the day: “About”. About what? About time? About face? About to buy a Starbuck’s mocha latte? About to do a cartwheel while whistling Dixie?

Speaking of being athletic, do the roller skating babies in the Evian ads bother anyone else? I find them deeply disturbing.

OK. Not my best post, but there’s a rather violent typhoon on the way so I’m housebound and getting twitchy. Must find something useful to do.


Happy Respect for the Aged Day, which is most appropriate for this post.

Rochi doesn’t normally want to do anything special for his birthday except go out for sushi, but he turned sixty this year and that one is significant for Japanese people. So our friend with the lovely large expat house offered to host, and we put together a menu and invited friends. Unfortunately, Rochi’s birthday is on March 15th, and by that day, our friends had bugged out and the stores were empty. Thinking the friends who remained would be dissatisfied with boiled air, we decided to postpone. So six months later, Saturday, we finally had the party. Some of the people he invited had never been to a foreigners’ party so we went whole hog. We decorated with balloons and streamers, even on the front gate, which was doubly funny because the house is right near the Norwegian Embassy and across the street from the Mormon Temple. It’s always fun to be silly in a place that takes itself much too seriously.

We had sushi, of course, but our friends are an eclectic mix, so we had a bunch of other stuff, too, including a pineapple upside down cake bake-off. (That’s the only kind of cake he likes.) I had taught one of his friends how to make it, so we both did. Mine was fluffier but she won. Hers was prettier and she put cherries on it. (Red. See below.)

It is traditional to give a red vest or cap on the 60th, but he would never wear either, so I told people the present theme was red, anything red. So he got red balloons, a book about the Beatles (wrapped in red paper), red boxer shorts with a matching undershirt, red chopsticks, a really great knife (use it to cut meat and it gets red), a gorgeous red scarf (which I will probably steal), and a gizmo that makes beer foam thicker (???).

I think everyone had fun, from the youngest (six months) to the oldest (The Man Himself). Pictures may be coming soon. I forgot to take any, but Sajith and his ever-present camera might have something good.


Ten years to the day since 9/11 and six months to the day since our little shake-up. I have heard people comment that eleven has become an unlucky number, but it seems to me that despite a certain symmetry, it’s nothing but coincidence.

Here, the traditional unlucky number is four. The sound of it, shi, is the same as the word for death. You can’t give anyone a present that comes in a set of four, and many buildings don’t have a 4th floor. Has it never occurred to anyone to just change the word for four? Or the word for death for that matter. We could say “pantyhose” instead of four, or “radiator” instead of death. It seems like an obvious solution to me.

At the store: I’d like pantyhose pairs of pantyhose, please. I love those black fishnets to radiator.

In the newspaper: His radiator occurred at 4:27 pm. He is survived by a wife and pantyhose children.


I had to take the bus to work today and the stop I get off at on the way home is called Nichidaiseibutsushigenkagakubumae. What an awful name for a bus stop. I was sitting at the front and everyone stared at me as I made my way back to the exit. They were thinking, “What kind of idiot gets off at a stop with such a stupid name?”

Hardcore slurpers (see August 14) at the noodle shop today, and the guy behind me let out two hearty belches when he was done. I guess if you’re going to suck in that much air, you have to let it out somehow, but honestly, he couldn’t wait until he was outside? Men are such pigs.

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