Definitely late with coming up with this one.

My birthday’s on Friday. And with every birthday, I type up a wishlist which I don’t expect anybody to give; I just put it up for the heck of it. Last year’s Christmas list was pretty productive in that I got a few things out of the way (I found my lost #7 computer glasses, Aida-san gave me the chains from #9, and I bought myself #s 1 and 10).

Enough chit-chat, let’s wish.

1. More hooks and chains!
I probably have too many clothes hence the need for more chains.

2.Scrabble ref magnets
Because I figure if I’m going to get magnets I might as well get fun ones. Need to hang-up my kitchen papers somehow!

3. Zojirushi Rice Cooker
I’ve been frustrated with my 10-cup metal rice cooker in that it’s TOO BIG and burns some of the non-rice stuff I cook in it. Rice cooker cooking is pretty popular in Japan, and Zojirushi is their most popular brand, so I want to go with this one.
I’ve seen this brand in SM Makati and had a mini heart attack when I saw the price tag (PhP 22k!). Here’s hoping it was mostly because of import tax.

4. Cleaning Supplies “Toolkit”
(will update with link later) I saw this on Pinterest and thought it was genius. You can go around with a whole cleaning supplies closet around your waist whilst you vacuum/mop/wipe/etc.

5. A Swiss Army Pocket Knife
I’ve never actually wanted a Swiss knife. But after fixing some stuff around the condo I felt I needed a toolkit but knew I wouldn’t be able to maximize it. I needed something smaller, hence the swiss knife wish.
I want one in a fancy color combo please.

6. Foldable Mini step ladder
Because when one can’t change the lightbulb simply because one is too short, a ladder is called upon to join the wishlist. I need one that reaches knee-length, and can be tucked away easily when I don’t need it.

7. Egyptian cotton sheets
STILL, #2 on last year’s Christmas list.

8. Foldable colander
Cooking pasta without a colander is really, really hard :(

9. Ladle
So I can make soups more easily.

10. Teaspoons
A step down from last year’s #3, I find I just need teaspoons. More for teas and measurements than anything really.

11. Jars for sugars and spices

12. 日本語の本 (Japanese Books). I know if I try hard enough I’ll be able to find online versions of these books but I’m still a paper kind of person, especially when it comes to studying. Some books I’m eyeing are:

  1. Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar
  2. Dictionary of Intermediate Japanese Grammar
  3. Integrated Approach to Intermediate Japanese (quoted to be the “Third” Genki book)
  4. Tobira (said to be the more difficult but more interesting version of #3)
  5. Genki Kanji Look and Learn (not the best kanji book, but since we’re using the Genki textbooks anyway I figure being consistent will pay off).

日本語は難しいです Part 1

(Japanese is Hard Part 1)

Struggling to keep up with my 日本語 class. Seems like everyone’s good in 単語 (vocabulary) while I’m horrible* at it.

I just can’t remember all those darn words! My teacher even scolded** me one time, ”忘れるを忘れましたか?” Did you forget the word for forget?

A friend of mine told me that it’s because, I analyze not memorize. Makes sense. You see, I’m an engineer. In university I was trained never to memorize. Just the core equations (most subjects will usually whittle down to 1-3), understand, then apply apply apply to all kinds of situations. Heck, if you were feeling arrogant, you could derive those core equations from an even deeper core like physics or higher math.

But that’s engineering. Not language.

Even so, I’ve got a pretty extensive English vocabulary. Why do I know all these words in English, but not in Japanese? Why didn’t I have any word lists for English and yet still be able to write like this today? What did I do differently then that I’m not doing now?

So that got me reminiscing. As a kid, I didn’t have neighbors and wasn’t allowed to go outside, so I had to find ways to amuse myself while my parents were at work. This was back before the age of computers and the internet.

I had a book of 365 Nursery Rhymes that I read over and over again. My mom kept a strict house budget, but it included buying the next volume of whatever series I was following. We would raid bookstores when it was sale season and come home with full bags. By the time I was in elementary school, I was hanging out in the high school library because that’s where the interesting books were.

I read. A lot.

I believe that’s the, What I did differently then that I’m not doing now. So I’m changing that. While I don’t think I’ll be buying any Japanese preschool books anytime soon, I’ve began bookmarking sites that offer online versions. Thankfully there are a ton of Japanese emigrant mamas out there wanting to teach their kids their native language.

And in case you didn’t catch that—yes, I’m rating myself at preschool level. Preschoolers, I don’t mean to insult, you’re probably better.

*On the upside, I’m doing fairly well in 文典 (grammar) and even 漢字 (kanji).

**Well, not really scolded as she was trying to stifle her laughter while keeping a straight face.


I’ve been thinking of starting a separate blog just to talk about my Japanese learning experience. The goals are to:

1. Document the journey.

2. Find people who can relate.

3. Improve my writing skills—I’m hoping to move towards full Japanese entries in the future.

While I’m still mulling it over, I’m posting this “starter” entry here in my catch-all personal blog.





You can be any character in the world…as long as you’re white.

  • They can never find ethnic actors…until they need maids, slaves, thugs, victims, extras, dropouts, villains. Even in fictional universes we get lightened, pushed to the background, vilified, or exaggerated. That’s IF we even make it to the movie. 
  • We don’t even get to tell our own cultural stories. 
  • Yet there will never be a black James Bond

Your imagination has been limited by whiteness and the norms it perpetuates. Don’t accept appropriation, don’t accept racism, and don’t give power to those who do by paying to see their movies.

The fact that these pictures are in grayscale makes them seem older than they are. This happens every year, with hundreds of movies, and continues daily.
End this.

(via thegeekiary)


People have offered many potential explanations for this discrepancy, but this ad highlights the importance of the social cues that push girls away from math and science in their earliest childhood years.

Watch the powerful Verizon advertisement to really understand what a little girl hears when you tell her she’s pretty.

(via happiijenny)

My name is Danna, and I'm a dork. That's all you'll ever need to know.


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