Friday, February 08, 2008


An International Man

Signs that your once self-described "very Japanese" friend is becoming the international man you begged him to be:

1. At the airport, he gives you a hug instead of a bow.

2. He asks who you voted for on Super Tuesday and says that the press in his own country favors Obama. In the same breath, he asks if you saw the Giants on parade.

3. He says: "We need to go to our place for lunch and for dinner. I haven't had decent Thai in a year."

4. He proudly tells you how, when asked by work colleagues what the hell he was doing going to New York for vacation when Tokyo has everything in the world one needs to be entertained, he responded: "If you like shopping and looking at people and stuff in Tokyo, I promise you New York is 100 times better. And it's even 100 times better than that if you have a good friend waiting for you."

5. He says that there's not much difference between packing for a weekend in Tokyo and a weekend in New York, except for the plane ride.

6. He asks if you will take him to that Moroccan restaurant again because he: ". . . had no idea that food from Africa was so good" and he can't wait to try it again.

7. He tells you about trips he has planned to countries where he has no friends waiting, where he doesn't know what he will eat and where he doesn't speak the language. Once upon a time he wasn't interested in anything beyond Tokyo Disneyland. But now he's curious about nearly everything.

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