Monday, February 29, 2016

Puzzler Answers

I'll go to the dentist this Friday. I do not foresee any problems as I brush and floss three times a day. How about you? Puzzle Anwers: CLICK HERE.

And here is a Super Scrabble Puzzle for your perusal. Cool Words:

DOZE             TOILET          COZY          MERRIER         JURY         RAW        UNITED     

Now, can you figure out the BLANKS? The answers are way down below.
 


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
SQUIRMY                     BADGE/BUDGE                         BOUNCE

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Puzzler Hints

The Super Scrabble Event is finished. Check out the report in Tuesday's BLOG. Puzzler HInts: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」
 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。


Saturday, February 27, 2016

Puzzler

The RAM Englsh Super Scrabble is tonight. Ten lovely students will participate. Sorry, no food or drinks. Just conversation and making words. Can't wait! Puzzler: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」
 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。




Friday, February 26, 2016

Bridge

There were around 200 people playing bridge in Yotsuya last Sunday. The directors ( the people who are in charge of the different groups) really had their hands full. That means they were very busy with this, that and the other. Each table has a BridgeMate calculator. At first we input our names and member numbers. Then we input the scores and results of each game. "North" is always in charge of that. It is all computerized. So, if there is an improper input, the main computer in the back room will alert the director. The director will come to the table to confirm or deny the numbers that we put in. Last Sunday the BridgeMates were on the fritz = they were not working properly for the first 15 minutes. But things finally become normal and we played almost seven hours with a 30 minute lunch break. There were 19 teams in our group. We were Number one in the AM and fell to Number 8 in the PM. We were 3rd overall. We earned more MPs and some good satisfaction. You can see the results tomorrow and Sunday.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

My garden

Spring is just around the corner. I heard a skylark singing Tuesday morning. Really! And it looks like I will be spending more time in my garden this year. Our regular gardener is out of action. That means that she will not be able to work in the garden. And we are not sure how long she will be on the DL. (In sports 'DL' means Disabled List). So, I will be in charge of gardening. It will be the first time in a long time so I am not exactly sure of all that needs to be done. Of course I understand weeding and watering and cleaning. I am also sure that I will be trimming and planting. I decided to buy a new hose as well as a new dustpan/broom set. Last Sunday I got up a little early before bridge and went outside. I weeded around the house for 20 minutes and swept up leaves. I moved a lot of pots and flower holders so I could hose down (water) the driveway and the path along the house. It wasn't cold so all went well. And then we went to play bridge. How did we do ? See tomorrow's BLOG.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Kitamoto Higashi K Part 2

There is a large wall around this kindergarten. I discovered it recently. How? Well, when I first started teaching here I came on NakaSenDou. So, I entered from the front where the Smile Kids Day Care Center is. This Day Care Center is part of the kindergarten. But 3 or 4 months ago I started using the "back door". That is, I never use NakaSenDou now. I leave my school and bike along the west side. I go past Okegawa elementary school. I go under the Benibana overpass. I cross over to the east side in Kitamoto and soon use the back road to the kindergarten. And because of that I saw this wall around the kindergarten. It has all the kids name and paintings on it. I thought they did it once and forgot about it. But to my surprise, I saw the kids painting on it Monday after my lesson. Someone painted the wall white. And then the kids paint their own picture on it.Then they write their names. How unique! How Cool!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Kitamoto Higashi K Part 1

The dictionary says: Kindergarten: A program or class for four-year-old to six-year-old children that serves as an introduction to school. Kind means children in German and Garte means garden in German. I now teach at 3 kindergartens. I enjoy it very much because the kids are so much fun. Every Monday I go to the Kitamoto Higashi kindergarten by bicycle. It takes 10 to 12 minutes. If it rains  I go by car. Two Saturdays ago I posted a picture on my Hints weekend Page. Did you see it? It was from this kindergarten. The kids drew pictures of themselves while looking at their faces in a mirror. I was really surprised! They were all unique. That means they were one of a kind. Of course, this is natural. But smaller kids draw pictures of kids and they all look alike. But these had different hair. They had different lips. They had different eyes. And some had different colors. I heard that they do this in elementary school but not in kindergartens. I was impressed.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Puzzler Answers

I have a violin lesson this afternoon. My teacher is very busy so this will be the first time in one month. I can't wait. Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE.

And now here is a Super Scrabble Puzzle for your perusal. Cool Words:

DOMED     LAMENT     CHOIR      BREATH      ZINC      CURSED      BRAGGED    LODGE

And how about the BLANKS? Can you figure them out? The answers are way down below.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
SHOVE/WAKE         HOTTER/POTTER     CATNIP        MINE/ZEBRAS


Sunday, February 21, 2016

Puzzler Hints

It's a beautiful day today. I can't wait to get to the bridge table. What are your plans for today? Puzzler Hints: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」
 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。

We did better in the PM session and we will get some MPs for the 2 on the right.


Saturday, February 20, 2016

Puzzler

We had bad results at last week's bridge. The other players were very good and we made some boo-boos (errors/mistakes). We will study and do it again tomorrow. Puzzler: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」
 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。

Last weeks AM session with the bad results.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Continued

So, I have the 'Lucky Deluxe' bento lunch in my hand. I had two choices: #1. Go to the check out counter and buy it. #2. Inquire (Ask) if this price was correct. I chose the latter. I was holding the box and asked the clerk if the price was correct? She was shocked! She said NO, it was a mistake. She tried to take it from me. I pulled it back slightly. I hoped she would say to me, "Oh, it's our mistake. Please take it." with a smile. But, she pulled it again saying nothing. Disappointed, I bought the cheaper lunch and a nice salad. It seemed an easy mistake to make. 850en and 580en. And both lunches are in the same place. Also, perhaps she had made the same mistake before. Perhaps she had made many mistakes. Maybe they would fire her if she made one more mistake. Maybe she had a sick mother and drunkard husband and some bad kids. Maybe if she lost her job she would go to jail. Or perhaps she was just embarrassed by her error. I will never know. But, I think I made the right choice.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

What would you do?

Here's the story. I buy lunch at the supermarket in MINE department store, Okegawa. It's very near my school. There's a good selection of food. The prices vary (there are different prices). There is also a good variety of salads. The only drawback is that all the food is cold. I buy the food and eat it at my school. So it is a time saver. Anyway, last week I went to get lunch here. First I bought a nice salad for 280en (deluxe type) and then looked at the main courses. The cheapest is 380en. It is pretty bad, but cheap. The next is 580en. It is pretty good but not so much volume. The top of the line (the best) is 850en. So yummy but, I almost never buy it. But, what a surprise! One of the deluxe lunches had a 580en price tag on it! I picked it up. I examined it (looked very carefully OR closely at it). Yes! It was the expensive kind: A 'Lucky Deluxe'. I had a chance to take it to the counter and get this delicious lunch at a discount. OR I could ask why the price was cheaper this day. What would you do? And, what did I do? I'll tell you tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Presidents Day

Two days ago was Presidents Day in the US of A. I forgot about it. America has had some great presidents and some not so great presidents. I wonder who our next one will be? Hillary? Trump? Oh my god! Americans honor all American presidents on the third Monday in February. Before 1971, President George Washington’s birthday was observed on February 22nd. President Washington was America’s first president. President Abraham Lincoln’s birthday was also observed February 12th.  He is well known for his role during the Civil War and for his delivery of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, which freed the slaves. In 1971, President Richard Nixon decided to honor all presidents during the same month and declared the third Monday in February, President’s Day. That same year, President Nixon changed many federal holidays to the nearest Monday of their actual date. On President’s Day, most public institutions and banks close, but private businesses like grocery stores and malls are open. Many department stores and malls offer sales on President’s Day.

Harry S. Truman...he is my favorite president.
 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Valentine's Day

The Celebration of Valentine's Day in Japan is very unique and interesting. On February 14th females give chocolate to males. And then males give gifts to females on White Day. White Day is a Japanese creation. It is March 14th. In America the celebration happens only on February 14th. Males generally give flowers or chocolates or candy to "special" females. They are usually wives or girlfriends. Females give chocolates or candy to their husbands or boyfriends on Valentine's day. The Japanese style is one of appreciation. That is, the females give gifts to co-workers or teachers or family members. I get lots of chocolates on this day. In America valentine day cards are also important, just like Christmas cards. In America daughters also give gifts to their fathers. But sons don't give gifts to their mothers usually. At least I never did. Anyway it's a good feeling to give a gift to someone, don't you think so? It's also good for business.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Puzzler Answers

Well, that was a good weekend. We have an ad coming out this week in Shopper. We hope to sell our kids Homework prints. Wish us luck! Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE.

And now a Super Scrabble Puzzle for your perusal. Cool words:

AWAY       DRONE       FROST       INFORM        OUCH        STUNK      ACCEPT     OWE    
 
   Now can you figure out the BLANKS? The answers are down below.



 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
QUIT                 AMISS               HAZY/CORNY              FAN/CRAFT


Sunday, February 14, 2016

Puzzler Hints

I realy enjoyed the day off last Thursday. What did you do? Puzzler Hints: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」
 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。


These kindergartners drew their own pictures while looking at a mirror. Cool!


Saturday, February 13, 2016

Puzzler

I might go shopping tonight after work. I need to buy some slippers. Puzzler: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」
 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。

Last Sunday's good news.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Bridge

We were off to Yotsuya last Sunday for an Under20/Under50 bridge competition. That means that there would be some beginners in the group. The first disappointment was at the cafe. I get dropped off from the car and go to small shop to buy sandwiches. They are much tastier than the ones at the convenience store. Well, all the sandwiches were sold out. I went to 7-11. Then bridge started. There were some players playing in the next room whom we knew. They were in the Under300 competition. Play began. As always there were some interesting games. But, in the AM I made a handful of mistakes which brought our score down. The good news was that we came in 4th to gain some IMPs. But the afternoon was bad. We both thought that we did well. But the final score showed that we were wrong. We finished 7th of 9 teams. We took the results home and studied the AM session. I studied the PM session last night. There is no excuse. We played very badly. We played poorly. We will try again this Sunday.
 

Thursday, February 11, 2016

National Foundation Day

The National Foundation Day is a public holiday in Japan. It is celebrated every year on February 11th. The day is celebrated to commemorate the formation of the nation and also for the establishment of the imperial line by the first Japanese ruler, Jimmu.
 Schools and offices in Japan remain closed on this day and people often stay indoors.  No grand parades or ceremonies are organized on the National Foundation Day of Japan. Some people can be seen waving the Japanese flags. The day is largely seen as one with only political significance. It was on this day in 1946 that the model Constitution was approved by General McArthur. Happy National Foundation Day everybody and Congratulations. I will enjoy this day off. I may go shopping! How about you?
(BTW The large elephants on the wall in my school are the numbers, 0 through 20.)

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Super Bowl 50

The biggest sports event every year in America is the Super Bowl. It is one game to determine (decide) which is the best (Number 1) football team in the country. This year the final two teams were the Denver Broncos and the Carolina Panthers. I was rooting for (cheering for) the Denver Broncos to win. That is because their quarterback (leader) is an old guy. And I lived in Colorado for one year long ago. There was a live broadcast on TV starting at 8AM Monday in Japan. I recorded it. I wanted to watch it later. So, I avoided any and all (every) news program all day. That includes radio, TV and the Internet. I didn't want to know the result. Unfortunately, I saw the result on an e-mail. It was one of those phishing e-mails. The title was "Denver Champs...Let's celebrate". I watched the recording of the game from 9:30 PM to midnight at home Monday night. It wasn't an exciting game. It was a defensive struggle. That means that both teams didn't score many points. But my team won, so I enjoyed it very much. Congratulations Denver Broncos.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

There is... There are...

Every month I introduce a Home Project (HP) for you on my weekend BLOG. This month it concerns "There is..." and "There are..." in sentences. Right now I am in my school. There is a slipper rack next to the front door. There is a potted plant on top of the rack. There are 8 pairs of slippers in the rack. There is a bookcase next to the rack. There is a magazine rack next to it. There is a map of the USA above this rack. There is a clock just above it and to the left. There is a fan above the window. There are green curtains and lace curtains on the window. There is an alphabet chart above the other book case. There is a CD player on this bookcase. There is a big whiteboard on the south wall. There is a calendar to its right. There are many kinds of paper on the table. There are six different colored chairs around the table. There is a tissue box on the table. There is a telephone on my desk. There is another pencil holder on my desk. There are two computers on my desk. There is a lot of other stuff, too.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Puzzler Answers

Another good weekend and I say "Thank you very much." Did you get the Puzzler? Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE.

And now, a Super Scrabble Board for your perusal. COOL WORDS:

AXIS    ALIEN     WEIGHT     AVOIDS     MOLDY     IRONY    CANDOR     BADE    GRUNT

Now, can you guess the BLANKS? The answers are way down below.

































 ZOOM           THICK         HONEY/MONEY        QUEEN/DONE

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Puzzler Hints

I had a very restful night, last night. I am ready to Go Go Go! Puzzler Hints: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」
 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。

What's that? I don't know.

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Puzzler

Here we go! It's February. I have lots of plans. And, you? Puzzler: CLICK HERE.

Home Project for February 2016: "There is...", There are..."
 
「  ~がある。」 「 ~がいる。」

 
数量を表すときに使える表現です。

1. There are 2,329 students in this school. この学校には2329人の生徒がいます。
2. There was only one customer in the shop. その店にはたった一人の客しかいなかった。
3. There's only 30 seconds left in the game! 残り30秒しかない!
4. There is a clock on the wall. 壁に時計が掛かっています。
5. There are a lot of restaurants around here. このあたりにはたくさんのレストランがあります。

 
DE-licious

Friday, February 5, 2016

Setsu Bun

February 3rd is Setsubun no Hi in Japan. Here is the story from Wikepedia.
Setsubun is the day before the beginning of spring in Japan. The name literally means "seasonal division". But usually the term refers to the spring Setsubun, celebrated yearly on February 3 as part of the Spring Festival. In its association with the Lunar New Year, spring Setsubun can be and was previously thought of, as a sort of New Year's Eve. So it was accompanied by a special ritual to cleanse away all the evil of the former year and drive away disease-bringing evil spirits for the year to come. This special ritual is called mamemaki (literally "bean scattering"). Setsubun has its origins in tsuina, a Chinese custom introduced to Japan in the eighth century.
That makes sense to me. Our family always celebrate this day. This year it was just my wife and I. Everyone is busy, busy, busy. We tossed out the beans chanting the words Fuku wa Uchi, Oni wa Soto. Then we ate the beans. I think they are delicious. I got so full!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Karaoke

We are busy. Everyone is busy! This is Japan. My schedule includes my work and everything related to it. This takes up over half my time. I also have my hobbies. One is bridge. My only days off are Sunday and holidays. Every Sunday my wife and I go to Tokyo to play bridge. I also have violin lessons twice a month. I try to practice as much as possible. As long as I go to my school I can practice. I am lucky that I have such a place to practice and take my lessons. Then of course there is family, house chores and gardening. Every once in awhile I wash the car. My wife has the same type of schedule. She is the other half of RAM English. She does bookwork, PR and troubleshooting. She also has hobbies and family and friends. There are so many things that we all have to and want to do in our lives. Recently I felt that we needed a change of pace. I thought that we should do something different. So, I suggested Karaoke. After my Saturday lesson we went to the place you see in the pic. It is not far from our house. We stayed an hour. We took turns singing and it was quite fun. What should we try next time?

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Yakitori

Last Saturday my wife and I decided to go out for drinks. We have several spots that we frequent. That means that we go to frequently. They are Futaba, Azumakura, Ishikawa. Futaba has great food. It is run by a family. It used to be a fish monger. They have a counter for 6 or 7 and three tables. Azumakura has good food and sake as it is part of Bunraku. It is large and has excellent BGM.  Ishikawa is a mom and pop operation. That means that the husband and wife run the shop. They have five kids. The food is excellent, mainly Udon and Soba. It is small and rather dark. We like the dark atmosphere. Recently we have been going to a Yakitori shop. It is called ToriShin. It is very near Okegawa station. One guy runs it. It holds at most 30 people. It opened three years ago. The food is good and the atmosphere nice. I called one friend and asked him to join us. I made reservations and we arrived at 7PM. We stayed until 9:30 and called for a ride home with the driving service Daikou. It was very enjoyable.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Bridge...Revenge!

There were 9 teams in Takadanobaba this day. It was an Under50/Under100 event. The morning went well. We knew all the other players so there were no surprises. In the AM we came in 7 of 9. That was worse than I had thought. But, I reflected on (thought about) the previous Sunday's results. Perhaps this will be normal for us now. We had a lunch break for 25 minutes. Then back to the fun. As always it was over before you knew it. My partner played exceptionally well. As for me, I considered (thought more) about my bidding. I kept cool and passed when things looked bad. I am sure that helped us. So, what happened? We came in first place. And not only that, we outplayed the competition by a wide margin. The directors applauded us on our comeback. Or as the Japanese say, "Revenge". They took our picture to publish it on their HP with the results. Cool! On the way home in the car, we agreed that the opponents made excellent plays in the AM against us, while they made serious (bad) mistakes in the PM. That's how it goes with bridge.
Very happy, indeed
 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Puzzler Answers

Did it snow again? No. Anyway, it's February. Great! Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE.

Here is a Super Scrabble puzzle for your perusal. Cool Words:

WEEDS    EXACT     BRAIN     AJAR    GUSTO     TAUNT    FOAM     LEDGE  
 
And how about the BLANKS? Can you figure them out? The answers are down below.


 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
TODAY           ENJOYS         TRAITOR                          TRAIL/LOW  TRAIN/NOW