cleo's past comments

  • 1

    cleo

    the father had thrown his son into Masaoka's arms as he saw the second wave of mud and rocks beginning to cascade down the hillside. He then watched helplessly as the suffocating tide swallowed both the child and his would-be rescuer. The bystander said the grief-stricken father remained where he was, just shouting his son's name. He was left unscathed by the landslip that claimed the young boy's life.

    That is so sad. That poor father. He thought he was doing the right thing.

    Posted in: 39 dead, 51 still missing after Hiroshima landslide

  • 0

    cleo

    So who is the biological mother?

    Posted in: DNA shows Japanese man fathered 15 surrogate babies: Thai police

  • -2

    cleo

    I'm not going to listen to an uncivilized rioters to impede a proper investigation

    Do you have any reason to believe that the eyewitnesses who said Brown was not moving towards the police officer when he was shot were uncivilized rioters?

    I hope you know that after Brown was killed that whole street became a crime scene

    What crime was committed, do you think?

    Posted in: As Missouri violence continue, fingers point to outsiders

  • 2

    cleo

    How did you celebrate the Relief of Mafeking? ; )

    Didn't even hear about it - no telly, remember. :-)

    And when we did get a telly, there were no programmes until the afternoon because of course everyone was too busy to sit and watch it during the day.

    I remember my Mum buying special photo paints to turn B&W photos into colour photos.

    And when I got my first summer job as a teenager and splurged the money on a new-fangled transistor radio, my Mum couldn't stand the endless pop music blaring out and went round pulling all the electric plugs out of the sockets trying to find the one my radio was plugged into.

    It was all good. But now is way better.

    Posted in: Are you old enough to remember a time when there were no cell phones, no email, no Internet and no way to keep you connected to the world 24 hours a day? If so, do you sometimes think back on that time fondly?

  • 3

    cleo

    I have vague memories of looking through a neighbour's window watching them watching the telly, before we got our own.....walking to the public phone box at the end of the street to make calls before we got our own (party) line....my Mum being ecstatic to get her own electric washing machine with automatic wringers....keeping milk and butter cool on a dampened concrete shelf in the pantry before we got a fridge....having one small room in the house dedicated to coal storage for the fire and hot water....recording episodes of Coronation Street on a reel tape recorder for my Mum when she couldn't be home to watch it....and not all that long ago, phoning home to the UK stopwatch in hand because anything over a few minutes cost an arm and a leg.

    Posted in: Are you old enough to remember a time when there were no cell phones, no email, no Internet and no way to keep you connected to the world 24 hours a day? If so, do you sometimes think back on that time fondly?

  • 4

    cleo

    Yes I am and yes I do, though sometimes is the operative word. With the kids grown and far-flung, it's great being able to keep in touch with them and other far-distant friends and family. We live in very convenient times, and I don't think I would want to go back.

    Posted in: Are you old enough to remember a time when there were no cell phones, no email, no Internet and no way to keep you connected to the world 24 hours a day? If so, do you sometimes think back on that time fondly?

  • 11

    cleo

    What is a "recycling shop" and why would anyone break into one...?

    Basically, a second-hand shop where people go to sell stuff they don't want and buy stuff that other people didn't want. A good proportion of the stuff is essentially brand-new (still in the original box, seals unbroken etc.).

    The Japanese custom of gift-giving twice a year means lots of folk have good-quality stuff that doesn't suit their taste or style, or that they already have plenty of and would rather have cash for.

    If you have one near you, it's probably worth a wander around every so often. You can pick up some real bargains from among the chaff. Brand-new quality towels, bedding and tableware, but also other stuff - brand-name bags, kimono, game soft/hard, sports gear, jewellery. In recent months I bought a new air-purifier/humidifier at less than a third of the retail price, and for years now have been using an exercise bike I bought for ¥2,000 (retail price pushing 100,000yen) - not brand-new, but whoever had it before me hadn't used it much.

    I suppose breaking into one is a bit like breaking into a pawnbrokers...?

    Posted in: Fanatic fans oblivious to sleazy side of Koshien high school baseball

  • 0

    cleo

    I agree with both Strangerland and Jeff. No one else's business assuming that the rights of all (and especially the child) are properly protected; but with so many children and babies in children's homes and orphanages around the world literally crying out for someone to take them home and love them, I don't see the point.

    Posted in: What is your stance on surrogate births?

  • 1

    cleo

    Ever successfully ordered "off menu" in Japan (curry houses, etc. excepted)?

    As a vegetarian, yes, all the time. It's the only way to get anything to eat. The big Western-style chains (famires etc) tend to get a deer in the headlights look when they're asked to tweak the menu, but the the smaller family-run places on the whole tend to enjoy the challenge and come up with some very good veggie dishes, sometimes totally off the cuff. Onsen yado-type places that pride themselves on their set cuisine tend not to like being asked to change the menu and many of them will point-blank refuse, but the ones who do go with it tend, I've found, to excel in menu creativity and ingenuity. Our local Indian place already has a veggie menu, so I've never had occasion (yet) to ask them to change the menu.

    Posted in: Japanese people reflect on examples of excess customer service

  • 0

    cleo

    I DO agree with virtually most if the Useless Japanese Service that Timtak provided

    I read through the list and found it for the most part to be, if I'm being charitable, petty and if I'm not, precious.

    If you don't want to pay for a hostess to sit next to you, don't frequent hostess bars.

    If you don't want to take a Purikura of yourself with enlarged eyes - don't.

    If you don't want plastic surgery, don't have it.

    You don't want your till receipt?? or your bank receipt??

    The only service provider who ever attempted to speak to me in English is our local ancient general practitioner. Shop assistants, bank clerks, everyone else, uses Japanese exclusively.

    Without the card, how does the hospital know who you are and where to find your records? You want every trip to the doctor to be a first-time experience?

    Offers (of disposable chopsticks, toothpicks, etc etc) can all be refused. No biggie.

    If you don't want the new years cards, chuck 'em. If you don't want the New year fukubukuro, don't buy 'em.

    You don't appreciate the taxi doors opening automatically when your hands are full of shopping and loose change? It isn't the taxi driver's fault you can't remember the door is automatic.

    Your post box might be a box under the porch, but the paper boy is carrying it through the rain to get to you.

    If you know of cheaper places to shop (we all do), why bother going to the department stores with their inflated prices and fancy wrapping?

    No one is forcing you to go to Huis Ten Bosch or any other theme park or former tourist spot.

    Posted in: Japanese people reflect on examples of excess customer service

  • -2

    cleo

    Europeans with their knives. basically, it all works out the same.

    I must have missed all those reports of Europe being under martial law (or not I suppose, since it happens so often?) as a result of some cop with a knife slicing up an unarmed shoplifter.

    High crime is high crime.

    Erm, neither walking down the middle of the street instructing traffic nor shoplifting is a high crime carrying the death penalty.

    Posted in: Missouri declares state of emergency, curfew after looting

  • -2

    cleo

    I always thought that the problem with too much salt is not just high blood pressure, but increased rates of gastric cancer. Can't find it now ('twas a long time ago) but I remember reading somewhere that gastric cancer rates in the West fell when the spread of domestic refrigerators drastically reduced the consumption of salted meats, and that rates of gastric cancer are still relatively high in the Tohoku region because of the traditional miso- and salted pickles-heavy diet and preference for splashing soy sauce over everything edible.

    Posted in: Study questions need to cut salt intake

  • 1

    cleo

    Finger-licking good shabu-shabu? Sounds painful.

    Posted in: Shabu-shabu restaurant mislabels beef on menu at 3 locations

  • 3

    cleo

    They're part of nature. Noisy, but not annoyingly so - it's the sound of summer, and it's quite poignant to reflect on the fact that after spending 7 years underground, they have just one brief summer in which to enjoy themselves.

    Posted in: 5 facts about the special significance of cicadas in Japan

  • -3

    cleo

    I think many foreigners would agree about feeling uncomfortable when calling "sumimasen!" ..... I'm sure there are many non-Japanese who wouldn't bat an eye to grab the server's attention in this way, but as an American

    Not sure what the subtle difference is between foreigners and non-Japanese. Not all foreigners are American, and the American way of doing things is not the Japanese way. When in Rome, and all that. Not having the serving staff hovering round you the whole time in the hopes of getting a bigger tip is one of the good things about Japanese restaurants. They sit you down, then give you time to get yourself settled and sorted, look at the menu and decide what you want before they come over again. Or they wait for you to call them. That's the way I like it.

    Regardless of whether you put one in your basket, the cashier will still ask you, 'Would you like a bag?' Wouldn't it make more sense to have an 'I'd like a bag' card?

    Round my way most of the supermarkets have a 'No bag please' card, and when the cashier takes it out of the basket s/he says something by way of 'thank you for your cooperation'. Occasionally in a shop I'm not familiar with I drop the card into the basket without looking at it only to find that it's an 'I'd like a bag' card. That's confusing.

    I feel a lot of this could be mitigated if the customer just spoke up or engaged with the staff

    Exactly. Instead of going away and complaining about the zombie-like, manual-dictated service you think you're getting, tell the staff what it is you want. Very, very rarely does that cause any problems. In Japan the customer is king, and if the king keeps his mouth shut no one knows what he wants.

    Posted in: Japanese people reflect on examples of excess customer service

  • 1

    cleo

    Reneka - Quite right! Those little old ladies can't possibly be in a hurry, they should all walk everywhere. Except then they would clog up the streets and be in the way of busy sararimen rushing from one appointment to the next. So they should take the local train, regardless of whether it goes where they want to go (why would they want to actually go anywhere anyway, it's not like they're working...) So they should use some other mode of transport, like taxis, they can afford it with the huge pensions they're raking in every two months, except then the taxis wouldn't be available when the busy sararimen needed them to rush across town to their next appointment. So maybe they should just sit at home and die, that would solve the problem of the trains, priority seats and pension all in an afternoon.

    And the pregnant ladies who need to sit down, they shouldn't be on the trains either. They should either find a husband rich enough that they don't need to work and commute to the office on a crowded train, or they should make sure they don't get pregnant. That would solve the problem of overcrowding in the day cares, too.

    (rolls eyes)

    an elderly woman who has been a housewife her whole life

    You know this how? Are all those little old ladies wearing badges saying 'eternal housewife'? My mil is one of those little old ladies, she worked FT till she was 70 years old, has trouble now managing the steps on busses and so travels by train. She was a paediatric nurse, and if your busy busy hardworking husband was born in Tokyo she may have even taught his mum how to bathe, change and feed him. I think she deserves a bit of a sit-down.

    My husband works extremely long hours.

    If you're concerned for him maybe you should persuade him to improve his work-life balance.

    Why should an elderly woman .... be given priority

    It's called good manners. Wait till you and your hardworking husband are older, then you might understand.

    Posted in: Japanese train seats for the elderly: To sit or not to sit?

  • -2

    cleo

    Nobody knows yet weather the shooting was justified or not!

    It was an unarmed kid. Seems pretty unjustifiable to me.

    Posted in: Police fire tear gas, stun grenades at protesters in Missouri

  • 9

    cleo

    It looks like he's bowing politely to the pigeon.

    Posted in: Watch the birdie

  • 2

    cleo

    if both choice led to their death, why is it still admirable that they followed order? Seems it's more honorable that they died for their own belief than what was forced onto them.

    Because if they refused, they weren't the only ones who copped it; their families would also suffer.

    I don't admire the kamikaze pilots; I feel sorry for them.

    Posted in: Kamikaze pilots say war horrors lost on young

  • 1

    cleo

    The vast majority of bird strikes cause little damage.

    I doubt the birds would agree with you....

    Posted in: Hawks used at Narita airport to help prevent bird strikes

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