Dream it, girl!

I am bursting at the seams with joy and delight tonight!

Remember just the other week, how I kept running into 渡辺 謙 (Ken Watanabe) things all over the place?

Remember how one of them was that quick-change from the Tony Awards, and how it made me really wish I could see that performance of his, in “The King and I”, even though it ended, like, over a year ago?

Believe it or not, due to a reason I know not, that production is, for two nights only, being shown in select movie theaters here in the USA.

Obviously, I (re)arranged everything, and I attended tonight’s showing of the performance.

It was spectacular, and almost even better than an actual live theater performance, because everyone and everything was so much bigger and easier to see, up there on the big screen. 😛

And, let’s be real here, I hadn’t seen the show since I was itty bitty, so I totally balled my eyes out at the end…

Also, the curtain call always makes a show feel complete – this one was no excuse – and I think that’s what’s missing from regular films, is a curtain call… a tiny nudge back to real life after the show, and a chance to show one’s extreme appreciation for the performance just given.

Plus, clapping and cheering and hollering, with a glint of tears in the eyes, is a totally fun way to end the event.

Anyway, thanks, whoever you are, who decided to show this performance for me tonight – miniature dream just came true! Woohoo!

Post-a-day 2018

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Japan all around

Japan is on my mind and in my life right now.  Recall that I watched the film “The Last Samurai” a few weeks ago.  I then watched it with the director’s, Edward Zwick’s, commentary the other day.  I had a cry-fest the first time, and was utterly touched and in love with samurai even more so than I already had been – I’d respected their skills and revered them as a whole function of class – and then I had a mind-whooshing wonderful exploration and discovery with the second, specifically leading me to appreciate even more the talents and passions of 渡辺 謙 Ken Watanabe*, the man who plays the lead samurai in the film and who plays ‘the Japanese English-speaking character’ in almost every Hollywood film these days – a man I’d already appreciated for his acting skills in “Inception” and other Hollywood films**.  And so, here I am, weeks after first watching the film, and I’m still thinking about the samurai, and I’ve added 渡辺 謙 (Ken Watanabe).

Therefore, when selecting what to wear for today that was unique and warm – the weather is suddenly chilly here, though it was genuinely hot and humid two days ago – I settled on one of my haori (use 羽織 to search online and get the right pictures on Google), the sort of winter jacket piece for kimono***.  The half turtle neck I usually wear with it was unfindable, and so I selected something else that was the same color, but textured really neatly (and then found the other shirt, but preferred the textured one, anyway).

That’s all my own conscious doing.

Today at work/school, the classroom we were using for the yearbook class for which I was subbing was an English classroom.  I happen to sit in a student desk, instead of the teacher’s, and what is directly in front of me?
This:

image1

I asked the students what book possibly was being read that had this on the board, and they concluded that it was a history book.  That is, students had merely used the board in the classroom during a free period, and had put up notes in preparation for a test or quiz in history class that was on that time period.  I was totally ready to read whatever novel it had been for English class, though… Oh, well…

And then, this evening, I found myself sitting in a coffee shop with my mom – her having the intention to read and I to work on my paper for school, but both of us kind of just chatting and catching up on things for the first almost-hour – explaining my outfit to her, one that she has declared to be genuinely great in terms of style and in terms of how it looked on me (and which multiple people had done throughout the day, including people who never comment on my outfits, which was really funny and cool all at the same time), and it turns out that the textured shirt I’d selected, though I hadn’t realized it when I’d selected it, was also from Japan.  I’d just remembered that I hadn’t worn it yet, but had been wanting to for a long time, and just hadn’t found the right situation and clothing combination, and had genuinely forgotten that it, too, was from Japan.  My mother, as we chuckled about the specific funky shop where I’d bought said shirt, then says that, ‘See, there are things you really liked about Japan.’

I agreed with her entirely, and mentioned how I know I want to go back and visit plenty; I’m just not so sure about ever even considering living and working there again.  However, I’ve just had a lot of Japan on my mind lately.  Learning about 渡辺 謙 (Ken Watanabe) and his language situation for the filming of “The Last Samurai”, made me consider whether I could be that kind of person in Japan, in Japanese film.  I have a natural tendency to pick up on accent quite well, and Japanese was no exception to this for me.  Could I go back and model and act successfully?  It’s definitely possible, but is it very likely?  Could I get the visa to give it a go, even?  Hmm… These are the thoughts that have been on my mind the past few days (though not for the first time).  I want to go back to Japan, but I also want to have something to do while there, even though I’ll only be visiting, technically.

And so, I suspect that I’ll just keep this all in mind, and, eventually, I’ll find a way back to Japan (and have a spectacular time while there).  Perhaps, either here or there, I’ll find a way to meet 渡辺 謙 (Ken Watanabe).  Maybe he’ll let me do an interview with him.  That would be stellar.  And possibly a really good idea.  Hmm…  Well, we’ll see.  For now, I’m just surrounded by Japan, intentionally, unintentionally, and even from outside sources… and I kind of like it…

🙂

*Yes, the Japanese version is with the last name first, read Watanabe Ken.  And I tend to say it that way now, though I didn’t do it intentionally and I didn’t used to do it.  I guess it is just automatic for me now, after having lived in Japan, to say a Japanese name ‘Japanese style’, so to speak.  In my head, every time, I say “Watanabe Ken-san”, but I already tend to leave out the -san with people who don’t understand it, and so the same happens with 渡辺 謙.

**When hearing what Edward Zwick had to say in the commentary of “The Last Samurai”, it had me question if that film had been 渡辺 謙’s (Ken Watanabe’s) first real role in a Hollywood film, thinking that it quite likely must have been.  I found it amazing, because I feel like I’ve known him as an actor for so long, that it must have been before 2003 that I first saw him.  After some consideration, though, I realized that, seeing as how 2003 was 15 years ago, it did actually make sense.  Sure enough, after dong a bit of checking, it seems that “The Last Samurai”, in 2003, indeed, was his first Hollywood film.

***Fun Fact: Kimono literally means “wearing thing” or “thing one wears”.

Post-a-day 2018

The Last Samurai… again

I’m not sure that I have ever watched a film with the director’s commentary, but tonight I did.

I discovered the other week, when I’d watched “The Last Samurai”, that the commentary was likely to prove exciting and valuable, and so I kept it on the list of to-dos until I had the time finally tonight to watch it… and I was right: It is spectacular.

I grew up in a world of theatre, often sitting next to a spectacular director, having him ask me questions and tell me little important tidbits about everything he was doing throughout rehearsal and preparation (and everything else, actually), and then, at other times, sitting with my mom as she worked on costuming or props for a show, and sometimes working on sets, myself…, and so I have not only an eye for many things in theatre and film, but also an extreme appreciation for what it takes to accomplish different aspects of a production.

Combining that with my experiences and understanding in Japanese culture, I found Edward Zwick’s commentary beautiful and deepening for the film’s overall power and impact… he and his crew were no surface-level group, but intentional, informed, respectful, committed, and honest workers in the task of making this beautiful, respectful, multicultural film.

Thank you, all of you, for all that you did in making that film. 🙂

Post-a-day 2018

Africa

I’ve started singing lately in an unknown language that sounds African… it reminds me of Swahili at times, or Zulu or Sotho or Xhosa…, but also totally not those… no matter what, though, it always sounds African to me….

And it has me wonder if it is linked at all to that deep-seated longing I have to live with the lions in Africa (or something to that effect)… perhaps, as I was considering tonight, I was in Africa in a previous (or another) life, and perhaps that was when my mom was Indian, and we somehow met through that proximity, and agreed to have this life together…

Wouldn’t that be neat…?

P.S. If you aren’t aware, look up an audio pronunciation of the language name Xhosa… I first heard it spoken aloud in the audiobook of Nelson Mandela’s A Long Walk to Freedom, and I loved it almost instantly.

Post-a-day 2018

Photography life insights

Attending all these weddings has been a unique experience…

I wander between delight with joyous tears and skeptical wondering… how lovely that they love each other so much to be marrying… I wonder if they have any idea of how long they’ll live (and therefore if they realize for how long they have committed to being together with their vows)… how magical to have someone to love mutually like that… I wonder if they still will be married in three years… five… ten… one…

I also wonder at the decorative and stylistic choices of just about everything at these weddings… I see and attend and analyze enough of them, that I notice the actual difference this or that makes for just about every detail… if I ever have a wedding, it’ll be a unique affair, and not one to be missed, I can assure that… (however, if I ever have a wedding in the first place, I don’t see myself throwing loads of cash at it, so very few people will be in attendance).

Post-a-day 2018

CrossFit Games

I don’t even do CrossFit, but I watched the end of the 2018 CrossFit Games today, because my brother was super excited about it, and he attended it all weekend in Madison, Wisconsin.  Not even four minutes into it, I was balling.  And, from that point onward, I continued having bouts of extreme tears all over the place until the very end of the Games.  It’s just that kind of thing.  I’ve done and been part of plenty of sports to be able to relate to so many of the feelings and situations and emotions, that I felt as though I could feel their struggles and successes.  Add the comments about how the whole goal of doing CrossFit is to be better as a person than one was yesterday, and it’s just a total tear fest.

I’m still not sure that I want to do CrossFit myself, but it was really neat to watch the nonsense that was the final round of the 2018 CrossFit Games.

Post-a-day 2018

Release leads to giddy joy

I received some delightful news today, but I wasn’t jumping for joy at learning it.

However, I have, since learning about that, been giddily delighted about something else entirely…

I think that the news today gave my whole being such a sense of relief that I suddenly was able to enjoy fully the something else I’ve been pondering lately (but hadn’t really been able to enjoy yet).

Funny how that happens. 🙂

Post-a-day 2018