What is one word that Americans would use to describe America?
Exactly! “Free.” Not “free” as in “you don’t have to pay,” but “free” as in “freedom.” And more commonly associated with this is the United States Constitution, and more specifically, the Bill of Rights. I learned these in elementary school social studies class and maybe even had to recite them.
These individual rights are ingrained into the American psyche almost like the alphabet. The right to free speech, the right to bear arms, and pleading the fifth are phrases used in everyday conversation in America.
We are taught very…
“When we are no longer able to change a situation — we are challenged to change ourselves.”
Viktor E. Frankl
Ladies and Gentlemen. We are now faced with a once in a lifetime pandemic that is changing the world. How it will change has yet to be seen.
No matter how much time we spend watching the news and worrying about what will happen to us, your guess is just as good as mine. Unless you’re a top scientist or a fortune teller.
I’m not sure what’s going on with me. People are getting infected with COVID-19 and dying all over the world. But I feel much less stress and anxiety than before the world was so quickly thrown into this panic and chaos.
My wife and I live in a small town smack dab in the center of Japan. Since we’re only about 90 miles from Tokyo, I should feel at least a little concerned that COVID-19 will come our way. We already have a few infected people in our town.
Although the number of infections has increased recently, deaths from the…
How long will this continue? That’s the question many people are asking themselves in this current period of self-quarantine. Some of us live in the city and some of us live in the suburbs. Even better, maybe you live on acres and acres of land in the countryside.
If you need some ideas to keep yourself occupied during this lockdown, I’ve made a list of 20 activities that start with the letter “C”. This is just one of the 26 letters of the English alphabet.
Maybe I should have started with “A” but the letter “C” just popped into my…
Am I lucky? Only time will tell.
I’m living in a country that either genuinely has low COVID-19 infection and death rates, OR it’s doing whatever possible to not expose the number of infections.
That’s right. I’m talking about Japan.
A country that is known for deep-rooted culture, delicious and artistic foods, and nearly half of the population of the U.S. crammed into an area the size of California.
It’s also been suspect to more than a few things recently. Not enforcing self-quarantine, almost non-existent PCR testing until the rest of the world finally convinced them that the Olympics will…
Health insurance in America is like a bad codependent relationship that you can’t get out of. Are you better off not having it or paying “who knows what” and still trying to avoid costly visits to the hospital?
Americans value freedom and individual rights. That’s why people “serve in the military and die for this country.” We have a problem putting things in the hands of the government, even though this is democracy. And a free-market democracy on top of that.
We want choices. We want options. We don’t want to be forced into only one option. Any notion of…
“Play with the cards you’ve been dealt.”
“The world isn’t fair.”
“Look out for number one.”
These are all quotes we hear as we make our way through life. Some of us suffer abuse from a young age and become healthy, successful adults because of that. Some of us have everything given to us on a “silver platter” from a young age and struggle to survive as adults. Some of us are somewhere in between.
It reminds me of the quote by Bill Gates:
“If you are born poor, it’s not your mistake. …
“You’ve got cooties!”
This is the most dreaded diagnosis you can get as a child. No one wants to sit by you, be your friend, or even come near you. To some kids, it’s a fun game, like freeze tag. Other kids become traumatized and maybe even become an outcast from this nonexistent cooties.
We grow out of this phase and start learning about real diseases. A friend with asthma who uses an inhaler. A classmate who has to eat a snack midmorning because of diabetes. Or maybe a relative who has cancer.
I had an 8th-grade Math teacher with…
Why were we so fascinated with picking our noses when we were kids? You’d put your finger in your nose and pull out a slimy green gooey booger.
Up until about age 3 or 4, it would go straight into your mouth. After being told “Stop picking your nose!” about 100 times, you’d look around for a few seconds, and then it would go straight into your mouth.
One day you realized how disgusting it is to eat boogers, and you’d look for places to discard them. …
If you’re an American or not, the numbers “9-11” stand out as a historical day. On September 11, 2001, there was an unexpected attack on U.S. soil using planes loaded with unsuspecting passengers. Many people died in the attack and building collapses afterward, affecting lives forever.
In my circle of friends and family, the numbers “3-11” stand out even more. My wife is Japanese as is the large majority of my friends. For them, March 11, 2011, is an unforgettable day. …