A Valentine Present02.17.11

Valentine’s Day evening I attended a forum on missions in downtown Tokyo put on by the Japan Evangelical Missionary Association. JEMA membership is predominantly English speaking, white, and culturally western. To my surprise and delight, none of the four presenters …

Posted by Andrea Johnson under Church, culture, History with 2 Comments on A Valentine Present.

Sleeping Together01.27.11

One of the experiences I’ve had because of living in Japan is sleeping together with my kids. I may not have tried it if I’d spent my life in the U.S. since sleeping in my own bed was all I …

Posted by Andrea Johnson under culture with 3 Comments on Sleeping Together.

Lodge Marmot01.01.11

Today marks my third day this week sitting in a ski lodge. I call myself the lodge marmot, since more than a few years have passed since I qualified as a lodge bunny. My kids think I’m crazy to be …

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Posted by Andrea Johnson under culture with 6 Comments on Lodge Marmot.

What Do You Do When…?11.19.10

What do you do when you sense conflict in a relationship? Why do you do what you do? I recently attended a seminar where this question was discussed in small groups.  Listening to the other three members (Japanese) of my …

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Posted by Andrea Johnson under culture with 8 Comments on What Do You Do When…?.

Tests Don’t Always Measure What They Seem To…10.15.10

I passed the top level of the Japanese Language Proficiency Exam last winter. It felt good to have twenty years of intentional immersion in Japan validated in this way.  The test, under the auspices of the Ministry of Education, is …

「急がば回れ」 If You’re In A Hurry…. 09.22.10

Who’s not in a hurry these days? Quicker ways to pay your bills, better apps for your phone and computer, healthier fast food so you can have less guilt about eating on the run. One of the first proverbs I …

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Boiled Pumpkin and Noodles08.30.10

Absence makes the heart grow fonder. Deprivation makes us really grateful for ordinary things (if it doesn’t make us neurotic or OC first). In February,when our six month home assignment began in the States, my kids thought that Campbell’s soup …

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Posted by Andrea Johnson under culture with 3 Comments on Boiled Pumpkin and Noodles.

Please Do It At Home06.06.10

A first glance at Tokyo might reassure a visitor that things are not so different from industrialized Western countries. McDonalds is everywhere, and many signs are helpfully written in English. The above sign posted on a train in Tokyo is …

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Posted by Andrea Johnson under culture with 2 Comments on Please Do It At Home.


Growing up, I loved Monopoly. Something about the competition, the thrill of imagining what my life would feel like if I really did own all those expensive places and have all that money and power made me feel good. And …

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Posted by Andrea Johnson under culture, History with 1 Comment on Monopoly.

Icann and Non-Latin Scripts05.18.10

The May 6 2010 BBC newsline reported that for the first time, “Net regulator Icann has switched on a system that allows full web addresses that contain no Latin characters.” Since more than half of all web users work with …

Posted by Andrea Johnson under culture with No Comments on Icann and Non-Latin Scripts.
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