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Director of Immigration Lawyer Office SAKURA International Legal Office
in Minami-aoyma, Tokyo.

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m-c-r, an artist place where we can feel at home, play with kids and appreciate arts
<02/10 (Sun) /2008 23:25>
They say that family life, work and art existed together and so did aged people, young people and children at a village in the old times.

They say that they have been separated. Family, workers and artists live independently in the suburbs, offices and museums. It is often said that they must be reintegrated like the old times. There are many of such trials as intercommunication between school kids and the local adults or decoration of an office with an art.

I heard of this kind of topic in my college, so it must have been over 20 years since it was first advocated. However, it must be true that I just happened to be conscious about this topic in my college, but people have been conscious about it for much longer time.

One of such reintegrating trials is South Aoyama Creators Residence (m-c-r) (in Japaense) which I visited today.

This place is in the same building of my office. I longed for going there. Luckily, I got to know SHAKE-san (meaning a salmon in Japanese), the owner and an artist of the place. Originally, it was an hour appointment, but our talk lasted five hours before my next appointment.

m-c-r rents artists its rooms for artistic representation by the week.

There are various names such as an artist, a painter, a ceramist and a jewelry designer. It may be common requirements for them that:

They have something in their mind that they want to represent,
they have skills to represent it,
they have places to represent it
and they have those who appreciate it.

"But there was no place for the representation," she said.

I said, “There are many art galleries.” She said there is a barrier to use them.

That’s why she has been creating m-c-r.

* To be continued.

To Japanese Blog

"YONONAKA"-KA (Real Life Class)" at Wada Junior High School
<02/06 (Wed) /2008 23:55>
Have you ever heard of Wada Junior High School? Recently, there has been a lot of news that a JUKU (=a private prep school) SAPIX has night classes in a public junior high school. This is that junior high school.

YONONAKA-KA ; YONONAKA means “society” and KA means “class.” As a whole, I think it is a class on real life, or how to acquire skills to survive real life. The class is held by Mr. FUJIWARA KAZUHIRO, a public-sector-experienced principal. Any adult can participate in the class as long as they satisfy the following conditions:
     1) Read FUJIWARA’s new book “A New Morality”
          “ATARASHI I DOUTOKU” is the original title in Japanese.
     2) Read YONONAKA-KA network website (in Japanese)
     3) Doing education-related activity

Today, the participants are members of a city council, college students who plan to be teachers and parents who have kids.

The theme of February 6, 2008 was “A training for an interview.” The interview for high school entrance exams was targeted.

I joined a group of junior high school students. As a student with my partner, I practiced greeting to the people who we met for the first time, telling a junior high school memories as a story.

I was so nervous. Definitely more nervous than to do this with an adult. But the student are used to adult joining the class, so I just trusted them and let them lead me.

One of the practices is an unexpected question “what color do you use to describe yourself?” It’s important to answer promptly to that kind of unexpected question with some good reason. The interviewer wants to see how promptly and how reasonably you answer the question.

I had this practice with two of the students. Which of the following is mine?

a) It’s golden-color, but a part of me is black. Because golden-color is outstanding. But I know I have some negative part in my mind.

b) It’s orange-color. Actually, it might be blue, but orange-color can encourage other people.

c) It’s red. Actual color of me is darker color. But the good effect from my friend X makes me think red is better for me.


It may be clear enough to tell my answer is B. I didn’t expect golden-color. That’s why he picked up that color. And three of us mentioned real color of our mind (or part of our mind) with the ideal color of the mind. It’s common among fourteen-year-old students and me at the age of over forty.

Probably you won’t think I am too childish. Those students are thoughtful, understand themselves and positive.

This kind of communication can be done promptly for fourteen-year-old students and their first-met over-40-year-old adult. Do you take it for granted or as the achievement of Wada Junior High School?

By the way, I knew their names. We introduced one another. But on the net, let me make them anonymous.

The principal FUJIWARA-SENSEI was too busy to talk with the participants. But we had a lot of fruitful talks after the class. Everyone said, “I’m so glad to be here today. I wish I had joined this kind of class in my junior high school.” I agree. If this is a company seminar, it can cost twenty thousand yen per person. Today it’s free for adults.

Also, I had a chance to have in-depth talks with a film director who has video-recorded the FUJIWARA-SENSEI’s activities and this school over the last five years.

What I was so pleased is the director videoed me because she really wanted to talk with me. I asked, “why me?” And she answered, “I felt energy from you.”

Those who know me don’t think I am so energetic. I asked, “From where do you sense that energy?” She answered, “I can’t sense any tension from you or you looked so relaxed.” She continued, “People usually get nervous to practice with students just because they are kids. You didn’t look like that.” I understood and appreciated her words.

On second thought, my tension vanished the moment I talked with one of the students, thanks to him. It took no time to build a mutual trust between us. It is not my one-way effort, but two-way cooperation. That’s one of the achievements of YONONAKA-KA. It will definitely be an asset for them to have such skill to build a mutual trust with a first-met person.

I talked with the film director about very important topics; let me write about it some time.

* Summary

It is meaningful to teach junior high school students about what adults learn in the company.

It is meaningful for adults to return to school for studying in the position of children’s.

We can meet people who participated in such place.

A lesson : It is possible to sense energy from a person who's relaxed.

It's amazing to have an ability to sense it.

To Japanese Blog

Now, it's indispensable, inevitable and the best time.
<01/29 (Tue) /2008 23:51>
When you hear "now, it's indispensable, inevitable and the best time," and if you can find out what it means, you already knew what I'm trying to say.

For those who say, “now it’s the worst time…” it must be hard to think, “Yes, now it’s the best time!” However, by thinking in that way, I can feel more relaxed and do something better.

Originally, the title words were what a certain president said when we met for the first time in two years. I always think in that way, so I said promptly “That’s quite right.” My understanding on those words is as follows:

Everything as it is, is indispensable because it won’t be linked to the next thing without them.

Everything as it is, is inevitable because it will be linked to the next thing with them.

Everything as it is, is the best.
If everything is fine, indeed it is the best time in our life.
Otherwise, still it is the best time because it is the best path, which will be linked to the best time.

*** This entry is being translated from Japanese Blog ***

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