2007, A Really Late Retrospective

I went back and read all my posts over the last year, and I noticed a very obvious difference in my pre-Japan posts. I can’t put my finger on it, but I think I liked the day-to-day drudgery a little more. The post-Japan posts are so epic, which a lot of my life feels like, but you got to give props to daily life.
My personal journal, the red-headed stepchild of my pile of notebooks, is ridiculously empty in my documentation of daily happenings. It’s mostly “Then a long, boring week of teaching happened, where I realized I’m a sham, and everyone here is a better teacher than me, but then the weekend came and I went to a magical temple and hung out with my friends and got the will to keep on living somehow.” And then 20 more pages on the magical temple.
But what I enjoy reading most are the monotony that is my life, and I realize now that monotony doesn’t have to be boring. Just because my life is routine doesn’t mean it’s not interesting. So I guess my one resolution is to embrace the monotony. Power to the drivel!
And now, here are the things I did in the past year, and what I’ve now learned.
January
-Final Fantasy 12 was really fun.
-George Carlin should have shut up long ago.
-I miss being in musicals.
Looking back
-Not having a game system or TV bigger than a shoebox in Japan is really sad.
-At least I used to have access to books in English.
-I love karaoke.
February
-Turbo Tax is a pain. Owing the government money is a bigger pain.
-People on the Food Network piss me off.
-Will what I blog come back to haunt me?
Looking back
-Thinking about doing my taxes while in Japan makes me want to slit my wrists.
-We have food on TV here, but unfortunately, it looks like the food that’s served in restaurants, ofttimes still alive. Pizza please! It’s $30 and has corn and mayo on it, but at least it doesn’t have tentacles! Usually.
-Will I remember enough about my co-workers and students to blog about them when I leave?
March
-Breaking news: The DMV sucks ass.
-I like to bitch about customer service.
-People who make grammar mistakes piss me off.
-The movie 300 was meh.
-How I almost got conned.
-Zen and the art of MMORPGs.
Looking back
-Breaking news: Not having a car sucks ass. (But I’m rich and muscular!)
-I bend over and take crappy customer service and ask for “motto kudasai”! (more please!) 30 days to hook up my internet! Domo Arigato, Mr. YahooBB!
-People who make grammar mistakes make me unrealistically happy. At least they’re trying to talk to me!
-The movie Sweeney Todd was meh. Damn you, Tim Burton. Cutting all my favorite songs.
-I have probably been conned here due to my unfortunate habit of adding extra zeros to the end of prices.
-Zelda and the art of Not Being Able to Finish A Game for 9-year-olds: The Why Kevin Has No Respect For Me Story
April
-I admit to everyone I’d secretly been applying to Japan all along.
-I discover that people latch onto countries because it makes them cooler.
Looking back
-I admit that not all Japanese life is green tea and onsens. Who knew?
-I discover that I live in the Iowa of Japan. I am not sure what that makes me.
May
-I do a lot of crafty stuff.
-I bitch about the mispronunciation of people’s names.
Looking back
-I barely have time to watch a Strong Bad email when I get home from work.
-I take what I can get, even if most Japanese people think it’s a hilarious joke to pronounce my name like the beginning of the song “Rawhide”. (And then proceed to sing the song “Rawhide”) Rorin’, rorin’, rorin’.
June
-Finished being a closed captioner! No more stabbing my eyes out trying to figure what they’re saying on Home Improvement television shows.
-Start up Theater Camp.
Looking back
-I kind of miss being competent at my job.
-Just finished the Theater Camp 2008 website.
July
-Camp is fun, even if I have to hate everyone for the last week.
-My friends really care about me. Or they just like to be invited to parties. (IN MY HONOR!)
-I hop on a plane to Japan, unknowingly providing every Japanese person’s first question they ask when they meet me: When did you come to Japan?
Looking back
-I’m going to miss camp AND hating everyone. Ah, I’m sure I can find someone to hate.
-I realize that I’m really going to miss my friends here. I hope we can stay in touch. God bless facebook.
-I have been in Japan since July! Amerika kara kimashita!
August
-I realize that it is possible to hate a season. :( I will never complain about being hot in the states again.
-I develop an unhealthy addiction to watching Buffy, and I find solace in reading the final Harry Potter.
Looking back
-I still will never complain about being hot in the states. Winter is nothing compared to the discomfort I felt in August. At least now I have 2 nice heaters to keep my house to a Normal Human Range Temperature.
-I wish I could leave school now to watch more Buffy and read more Harry Potter. :(
September
-I talk about the JET application and interview process, mentioning a few snarky forum members who made my application time stressful.
-I trick my new friends into liking me by blogging about what I like about them. It’s a sneaky web we weave.
Looking back
-I have become a snarky member of the internet forum community where anyone whose opinion differs from mine is a big moron and also probably fat.
-I have chosen wisely. I still like all the people I high-schoolishly listed as my BFFs!
October
-I went to the Tokyo Game Show and stayed in a capsule hotel!
-I am learning Japanese! But nothing I will ever use.
-Halloween is fun, even if no one knows what you are.
Looking back
-I have so many more places I need to travel.
-Still no Japanese I can use, but I can tell you what word you say if you’re counting fish…
-Winter is fun, because I can pull my hood up, and no one can tell I’m a foreigner.
November
-I possibly break a sushi ordering machine.
-Spiders take over the my apartment.
-I throw a delightful first Thanksgiving with my friends!
Looking back
-I still go to that sushi place weekly, so if I broke it, their smiles hide everything.
-One spider survived the winter mass exodus. Until I saw him…
-Some friends just invited me over to relive that traditional Thanksgiving treat, tacos!
December
-Melissa comes to visit. I drag her around town, ignoring that she might have jetlag.
-We have a kickin’ ALT party in our prefecture.
-I fly home, spending what seems like a week in airports around the world.
Looking back
-Oh, I have learned so much since 28 days ago! I was so young then, so full of life and hope! But now I’ve matured and learned lessons I will carry on with me for the rest of my days.
And that’s my year. Another new year’s resolution is to silently fume that I get more comments on my three-sentence-long blogs in broken Japanese than I get here. So, yeah, get on that!

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