Saturday, April 24, 2004

They were reckless

A bleak homecoming for freed Japanese:

By Kenji Hall, Associated Press | April 24, 2004

TOKYO -- No well-wishers were at the airport when three Japanese civilians taken hostage in Iraq returned home safely. As they left the plane, the two volunteer aid workers and a freelance photojournalist hung their heads and were silent.

It was a bleak homecoming -- and it didn't end there.

Noriaki Imai, 18, Nahoko Takato, 34, and photojournalist Soichiro Koriyama, 32, have been accused of rashly ignoring government warnings to stay away from Iraq and blamed for imperiling the Japanese military's humanitarian mission there. The government said it would bill them $6,000 for their flights and other expenses.
...
When I made the comment a couple of weeks ago in RyukyuSoul's journal, I didn't realized their presence in Iraq wasn't sanctioned by the Japanese government. In light of this, I retract the comment and add another voice of condemnation:
"Even though their intentions were good, they should reflect on why they ignored the government's warnings against going to a place as dangerous as Iraq," Japan's leading financial newspaper, Nihon Keizai, said in an editorial. "They could have compromised Japan's humanitarian mission in Iraq and this country's foreign policy in general."
They were reckless. But then, the government should implemented the stricter warning in the first place:
Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi said Tuesday she might consider tougher travel warnings, and ministry officials said they were considering advisories cautioning that the government might not be able to rescue travelers who put themselves at risk.

Friday, April 23, 2004

Fiona Apple: Tidal

Tidal is Fiona Apple's first album:
1. Sleep to Dream (Apple) - 4:08
2. Sullen Girl (Apple) - 3:53
3. Shadowboxer (Apple) - 5:24
4. Criminal (Apple) - 5:41
5. Slow Like Honey (Apple) - 5:56
6. The First Taste (Apple) - 4:46
7. Never Is a Promise (Apple) - 5:54
8. The Child Is Gone (Apple) - 4:14
9. Pale September (Apple) - 5:50
10. Carrion (Apple) - 5:43
Not that soft at first, but way delightfully so as the album progresses. What a voice. It is deep, clear, and rich. At times, it reminds me of Sade. It is also not what I would expect from a teenage artist. I was pleasantly surprised.

The songs are a wonder mix of styles, eclectic in nature. I like them all. Thanks again to closeyoureyes for the recommendation. I'll have to listen Tidal several times to fully appreciate how good it is.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

It must be a mistake

As a Dr. Phil fan, I was gamed to take the Dr.Phils Test recommended by himawari. Well, here's what I got:
Your total score is 41

Interpretation of Results:
Others see you as fresh, lively, charming, amusing, practical, and always interesting; someone who's constantly in the center of attention, but sufficiently well-balanced not to let it go to their head. They also see you as kind, considerate, and understanding; someone who'll always cheer them up and help them out.
It's not true. Don't believe it. It must be a mistake.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Ogden Nash: I Do, I Will, I Have

This is the poem that I was searching for:

I Do, I Will, I Have


How wise I am to have instructed the butler to instruct the
first footman to instruct the second footman to instruct
the doorman to order my carriage;
I am about to volunteer a definition of marriage.
Just as I know that there are two Hagens, Walter and Copen,
I know that marriage is a legal and religious alliance entered
into by a man who can't sleep with the window shut and
a woman who can't sleep with the window open.
Moreover just as I am unsure of the difference between flora
and fauna and flotsam and jetsam
I am quite sure that marriage is the alliance of two people one
of whom never remembers birthdays and the other never
forgetsam,
And he refuses to believe there is a leak in the water pipe or
the gas pipe and she is convinced she is about to asphyxiate
or drown,
And she says Quick get up and get my hairbrushes off the
window sill, it's raining in, and he replies Oh they're all
right, it's only raining straight down.
That is why marriage is so much more interesting than divorce,
Because it's the only known example of the happy meeting of
the immovable object and the irresistible force.
So I hope husbands and wives will continue to debate and
combat over everything debatable and combatable,
Because I believe a little incompatibility is the spice of life,
particularly if he has income and she is pattable.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

"Marriage" by children

Since the Buddhist post was such a hit, here's more humor. I found this by accident while searching for an Ogden Nash poem on the same subject.

Marriage by children:

HOW DO YOU DECIDE WHO TO MARRY?
You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like, if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip coming.
* Alan, age 10

No person really decides before they grow up who they're going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later who you're stuck with.
* Kirsten, age 10

WHAT IS THE RIGHT AGE TO GET MARRIED?
Twenty-three is the best age because you know the person FOREVER by then.
* Camille, age 10

No age is good to get married at. You got to be a fool to get married.
* Freddie, age 6 (Very wise for his age)

HOW CAN A STRANGER TELL IF TWO PEOPLE ARE MARRIED?
You might have to guess, based on whether they seem to be yelling at the same kids.
* Derrick, age 8

WHAT DO YOU THINK YOUR MOM AND DAD HAVE IN COMMON?
Both don't want any more kids.
* Lori, age 8

WHAT DO MOST PEOPLE DO ON A DATE?
Dates are for having fun, and people should use them to get to know each other. Even boys have something to say if you listen long enough.
* Lynnette, age 8 (Isn't she a treasure)

On the first date, they just tell each other lies and that usually gets them interested enough to go for a second date.
* Martin, age 10

WHEN IS IT OKAY TO KISS SOMEONE?
When they're rich.
* Pam, age 7

The law says you have to be eighteen, so I wouldn't want to mess with that.
* Curt, age 7

The rule goes like this: If you kiss someone, then you should marry them and have kids with them. It's the right thing to do.
* Howard, age 8

IS IT BETTER TO BE SINGLE OR MARRIED?
I don't know which is better, but I'll tell you one thing. I'm never going to have sex with my wife. I don't want to be all grossed out.
* Theodore, age 8

It's better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need someone to clean up after them.
* Anita, age 9 (Bless you child)

HOW WOULD THE WORLD BE DIFFERENT IF PEOPLE DIDN'T GET MARRIED?
There sure would be a lot of kids to explain, wouldn't there?
* Kelvin, age 8

"And the #1 Favourite is........"

HOW WOULD YOU MAKE A MARRIAGE WORK?
Tell your wife that she looks pretty even if she looks like a truck.
* Ricky, age 10

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Great come back line

I couldn't resist. This is from last Thursday's entry in Seb's Open Research blog:
"Make me one with everything."
- Buddhist to hot-dog vendor


(The hot dog vendor prepares the hot dog and gives it to the monk. The monk pays him and asks for the change. The hot dog vendor says: "Change comes from within".)