Wednesday, December 14, 2005

He Works Hard For The Money!

"So hard for it honey."


The best of the best of 80's Flashbacks, here on KIDD 97.3 FM!

Randomness can be a good thing.

I was at school until 9 P.M. today.

Then the security guard came and told all of us to go home.

See, Starfish High shuts down at 9. I think this is a very good thing. If we didn't have to leave by 9, some of the teachers might stay there and work all night.

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.
All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.
All work and no play mak...

Whoa. Sorry. I didn't mean to go all Stephen King on you guys.

Anyway, I guess the question that needs to be asked is "Why were you at work that late today, Dustin?"

I would like to say that it was because I was working very hard on creating new and exciting English assignments for my classes.

I would like to say that, but if I did, I would be lying.

I was printing out nengajo (New Year's Day postcards).

Nengajo are the Japanese equivalent of Christmas cards. Since New Year's is a much more important holiday over here than Christmas (I will write more on this at a later date), you don't see many Christmas cards. But come January 1st, your mailbox will be filled with nengajo.

While I was here on my student exchange, I made my first foray into the world of nengajo. I figured it would be a good way for me to practice writing kanji, and a way to experience first-hand this facet of Japanese culture.

I think I wrote about a hundred of the damn things.

Killer on the wrist.

But it did help me improve my kanji writing skills.

When I came back to work here, I found out about nifty computer programs that help you design and print out your nengajo. Some people just go with a generic message and send that out to all their friends. I prefer to write a message on each one. Printing out your cards saves your wrist a lot of grief.

I probably send way too many every year, but I really enjoy sending them. Maybe I'm crazy. Actually, there's very little doubt about that.

So, this year, I finally got around to buying my own computer. I bought it off of a friend back in Shimane. Since it was a laptop from the States, I asked him to adjust it so that I could write in both English and Japanese and install Japanese programs. He took care of it for me, and I have been very satisfied with the results.

Until I actually went out and bought one of the nengajo-making programs.

I installed it.

No problem.

I opened it up.

So far so good.

I opened up my address file from a previous program that I used on a friend's computer.

Ab-so-lute gibberish.

So I tried retyping an address.


This is a problem.

So I talked it over with Hiroshi.

He said, "Use the school's computer."

Is that okay?

"Sure, just be subtle about it."

Aaah. OK.

So I "borrowed" a laptop from the school, installed the program, uploaded my address file, designed my card, and went to print some cards out.


Printer incompatibility.

So I ask Hiroshi again. What should I do?

"Use the school's printer. Just be subtle about it."

What kind of a place am I working at here, anyway?

So, I talk with the computer expert, and he says, "Oh, just use my printer."

So I get the okay to use his printer. Hmm, where do I "subtly" print out my nengajo?

"You've got space on your desk, right?"


Oh well, whatever. So I went through and printed out my New Year's Cards in front of everybody in the office.

Nobody said anything.

I figure it must be because of my intimidating musculature.

I scare myself sometimes.

So my cards are printed, addresses are printed as well, and all that's left is for me to write my messages and send them off.

By the way, since I can't post a picture of it, here's a description of the design:

I'm standing in a field of sunflowers, staring off into the distance.

Just Dustin being Dustin.

I really do scare myself sometimes.

Oh well, back to work on writing them...


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