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趣味

December 29, 2017

私の趣味は何ですか。あの、本を読むのが好きです。どんな本ですか。ええと、推理やスリラーが好きです。最近、日本語を練習するために日本の子供の本を読んでいます。本を七冊買ったり友達が私に本を一冊くれたりしました。もう、本を五冊読み終わりました。時々、NHK Easyの記事も読んでいます。

Books

サルサを踊るのも好きです。十二年間ぐらいサルサを踊っています。昔は一週間に三回サルサのクラブで踊りに行ったものです。今は、時々、一か月に一回だけ踊りに行きます。これはユーチューブで私のサルサのビデオです。友達はビデオを撮ってくれました。

ところで、日本人の友達は「サルサを踊ることは東京で人気です」と言いました。

毎週土曜日に家の近く湖に散歩に行きます。天気が寒くても暑くても、また散歩に行こうと思っています。

IMG_3438

湖に行く前に、たいてい、ベトナムのアイスコーヒーを買います。いつも、コーヒーを飲みながら散歩しています。よくベトナムのアイスコーヒーを飲んでしまいます。仕方ない。おいしいですから、ベトナムのアイスコーヒーが大好きです。😳

Coffee

到頭、そして、時々、ネットフリックスで日本の番組を見るのが好きです。グッドモーニング・コールが一番好きな番組です!

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ベビーメタルです

November 11, 2017

The other day, I posted my first blog entry ever written in Japanese. I wrote the entry to practice grammar and to recall vocabulary. For those who are wondering, I explain that I have been studying Japanese, how I take a Japanese class once a week via Skype, how I have made Japanese friends at Japanese Meetup events and how I would like to become better at Japanese.

The first question everyone asks me is why I chose to study Japanese. Last year, I was going through a personal struggle, and then I came across a video in April 2016 in which I watched a Japanese band called BABYMETAL perform on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. After I watched the video, I was left scratching my head, but there was something that intrigued me about the group. As funny as it sounds, the music resonated with me as I watched more and more of their videos. At a time when I desperately needed it, BABYMETAL provided me with something positive in my life. One day, as I was watching an interview, I decided that I would try to learn Japanese, thus, beginning my journey and interest in learning the Japanese language.

One of my goals will be able to write in Japanese why I decided to study Japanese. I don’t feel like I will be able to do it appropriately right now. In the meantime, I will write blog entries occasionally in Japanese as an exercise to recall grammar and to use vocabulary more often. Additionally, I supplement my studies by practicing speaking and listening with conversation partners who are learning English.

For anyone interested, I have been self studying using the Genki 1 and Genki 2 books. Additionally, I am using Remembering the Kanji to learn the much-dreaded Kanji. In addition to these great resources, I subscribed to Japanese Ammo with Misa and Japanese Pod 101. Finally, Tae Kim’s guide to Learning Japanese was the first resource I used when I began my studies, and I personally recommend it first to anyone who is interested in learning Japanese. On a personal note, I would like to thank my Japanese teacher and all the conversation partners who have helped me immensely along the way.

ありがとうございました

日本語で話しましょうか

November 9, 2017

皆さんこんにちは。一年間半ぐらい日本語を勉強してきました。初めてブログを日本語で書いています。勉強している日本語は楽しいですけど難しいです。毎朝文法と新しい単語を勉強する前に朝ごはんを食べます。毎朝漢字も勉強しています。意味なら知っていますけど読み方は全部知りません。たくさん読み方があります!

一週間に一回スカイプで日本語のクラスをします。先生はいい先生で辛抱強いです。いつもクラスは楽しいです。日本のMeetupに行ったので、日本人の友達ができました。よく日本語を友達と練習してみたいです。でも友達は英語のクラスがありますから忙しいです。英語を勉強したほうがいいです。

私は日本語が上手になりたいです。だから毎日二時間から三時間日本語を勉強しようと思っています。頑張ります!

十日十一月:ミスを直しました

Pooch has perfect bracket on eve of Final Four

April 1, 2016

A dog living on the outskirts of Colombo, Sri Lanka has a perfect bracket on the eve of the Final Four, which is part of the NCAA’s men’s division 1 basketball tournament, commonly known as March Madness in the United States.

Ocho, or Ate as he’s known throughout his village, pawed his way through the first, second, third and fourth rounds. His master, John Smith, who grew up in the greater Seattle area and settled in Colombo after excursions across the world, explained how he used a stick to sketch the tournament’s bracket on the dirt floor of his Tiki hut several days before the tournament started. He awoke one day and noticed how each matchup had a paw print next to what would eventually be the winning school’s name. Intrigued, Mr. Smith continued advancing schools based on Ocho’s paw print for each round before he ultimately made the selection for the tournament’s champion.

Once Ocho made all his selections, his mater submitted the bracket to CBS, ESPN and Yahoo! Mr. Smith was amazed after the first round, when all of Ocho’s selections advanced. He was utterly bewildered that his furry friend was able to predict all the upsets and not-so-upsets. Mr. Smith was left even more speechless as every choice continued to advance through the round of 32, Sweet Sixteen and Elite Eight.

Ocho is on the verge of completing the perfect bracket should his choices for the Final Four and championship match win their games; however, the odds are still against Ocho. According to statisticians, the odds of selecting a perfect bracket are 1 in 9.2 quintillion due to the many permutations in the tournament. Should Ocho’s selection for the Final Four and championship match hold up, he would become the first animal on planet Earth to accomplish this extremely rare feat.

The Final Four pits Villanova against Oklahoma and North Carolina against Syracuse. Both games will be played Saturday April 2nd in Houston, TX. Villanova is a two-point favorite against Oklahoma, which is considered the closer of the two matchups, while North Carolina is heavily favored against Syracuse. Ocho chose Syracuse to upset North Carolina and will play Villanova in the championship game on Monday April 4th where Villanova will ultimately put an end to Syracuse’s Cinderella run.

Whatever the outcome of the three remaining games, it’s still quite an amazing accomplishment for man’s best friend considering no one has come this close to a perfect bracket ever.

Not Just Another Holiday

January 18, 2016

I hope we don’t see today as just another holiday where we just take the day off and forget its meaning. Martin Luther King, Jr. played such a pivotal role in not just civil rights, but human rights. I wanted to take some time to share some stories about him that I felt were important.

Martin Luther King Jr. Celebrations Overlook His Critiques of Capitalism and Militarism 

US military says Martin Luther King would be proud of its weapons

MLK’s vehement condemnations of US militarism are more relevant than ever

15 Powerful Martin Luther King, Jr. Quotes

2016

January 17, 2016

Wow! It’s 2016 already, and I haven’t written anything yet to ring in the new year. Time seems to move at light speed as I’m aging, but there are periods where I feel time slows down (I call those times work days haha). I’m sure this year will have its share of surprises, so let’s see sit back and see what happens.

LJB, FSB

October 10, 2015

I read the following press release a few weeks ago about how a banker who worked at La Jolla Bank, FSB admitted to conspiring with other senior executives at the bank in approving bad loans to unqualified borrowers. Ms. Martinez, along with others, accepted bribes and kickbacks in return for making loans to borrowers, known as “Friends of the Bank (FOB),” who were unable to repay the loans. When FOBs defaulted on a loan, “bank executives gave them more loans so they could make payments on the initial ones.”

An audit describes what caused the bank’s failure. The bank failed due to “significant asset quality deterioration and loan losses.” Not surprisingly, the control fraud involved LJB’s CEO and CCO. Who else could defeat a bank’s internal controls easily? The bank was set up to fail due to an environment fostering a Gresham’s dynamic in which the bank grew aggressively by originating bad loans. The bank’s officers were rewarded with compensation based on fictitious earnings and by receiving bribes/kickbacks, while the taxpayers bore the costs to the tune of $1 billion. Ultimately, the bank did not have enough capital to sustain a deteriorating loan portfolio–the Ponzi scheme began to crumble.

In the end, the Office of Thrift Supervision closed the bank in 2010 and assigned the Federal Deposit Insurance Company as receiver, which sold LBJ’s deposits and assets (through a loss-share agreement) to another financial institution.

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