Japanophila is that which is J

Japanophila is that which is J

I haven’t written yet about our Bean, but I want to. No this is not B for Bean or even E for Emily (what we call her when we are not able to call her Bean). This may just be the place.

I’m not quite sure how it happened. When she was a tiny baby and we listened to music, I brought up the music I remember listening to  with my Mom. Now I like Simon and Garfunkel quite a lot, though I don’t listen to them much anymore. I know every word to every song, I’ve heard them so often.

So I played them and realized that my sound track didn’t fit her. She needed something entirely different.

So I pulled out Catnip Dream and Shonen Knife.

And as we danced around the tiny apartment living room I knew deep down, that no matter what she was going to have happy songs around her, a happy childhood, right from the beginning.

And over the next few years I played Shonen Knife for her off and on and one day she told me she wanted black hair. And that in a past life she had been Japanese.

I’m guessing all the viewings of My Neighbor Totoro and every single other Miyazaki movie we could find (not grave of the fireflies though) might have helped things along.

Then we had to find out who sang the ending song to her favorite movie Kaze Ni Naru from Neko no Ongaeshi (The Cat Returns)


Some where around here the mold was cast. She asked for Japanese lessons and I found a sweet girl from the university, who is probably teaching English there now. She decided she’s going

to be an exchange student and live in Japan.

She wanted more Japanese music so I shared what I had (but Malice Mizer didn’t go off that well) so I found all of Ayano Tsuji on ebay (she’s the one singing in the Cat Returns song above)

Now we watch Anime every weekend, she knows what all the conventions of it are–even better than I do. She reads manga like she’s starving and has a real Japanese school uniform with a

Randoseru, which is the backpack they carry from kindergarten through 5th or 6th grade. Sadly Em’s books got too big to carry in this this year. But she did for several years and may again.


We’ve got he going with several Japanese language programs on the iPad and her computer. She also went to her first anime convention recently.

I could go on and on about that and will at some point, but it is late and I’m tired (I went for a walk AND made a rather complicated dinner) so I’ll leave you with these

adorable moments from my favorite Japanophile.

On the way to animeA happy day for Bean



    1. Jyllian M

      How cool! I’ve had to tell her, as she faces some judgement on her geekiness (something her parents have traversed) that her people are out there and that there are more of us all the time.

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