Sunday, June 13, 2004

The Smell of Cut Grass

[Westerners] paint their ceilings and walls in pale colors to drive out as many of the shadows as they can. We fill our gardens with dense plantings, they spread out a flat expanse of grass.

-Junichiro Tanizaki, In Praise of Shadows
This is from a book I'd recommend to any fans of traditional Japanese culture. Written in 1933, it's a short essay about the changing times the author was experiencing, as well as many other topics. It feels almost profane to recommend it over the internet.
   I was thinking about it as I walked into Yoyogi park for my weekly ultimate frisbee. There was a slight wiff of cut grass in the air there, which is rare for this country. It reminded me of home. Running around, chasing a frisbee in the sun was a perfect way to spend my afternoon. I also got invited to join the team going to Japan Sectionals! We're going to have to recruit more people- 8 is all we have so far. The idea is, if we win enough games in Sectionals, we'll continue to Regionals, and from there to Nationals. Seems unlikely we'll get beyond Sectionals though.
   Ah yes, I almost forgot to mention the guy I saw biking around in a sort of skin-tight navy blue jumpsuit (with hood) trimmed in flourescent green. It covered all of his skin, and he had matching gloves and a pair of dark googles over his eyes. Sometimes I'm still amazed by Japan.

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