Thursday, January 9, 2014

Osho san by Conto 55
if this doesn't work, please go to youtube and copy the below as keywords and search.


The struggling Buddhist priest and a young disciple
In their neighborhood, a Christian church has been built recently, and people started going to the church instead of their temple.

"Because the pastor at the church is hansome," the disciple says.

"Did you say I'm not hansome?" the priest says.

"Even if I didn't say, you're not hansome."

Now people go to the church for weddings and funerals, the priest says they need to change this situation.  He suggests the disciple become a super star to attract more people to come to the temple.  He also suggests the disciple  become more modern and employs the enka rhythm, then the jazz rhythm, and so on, and he decides that their monotone sutra chants is out.

Their impromptu sketch makes me laugh every time.

The great comedian on left is Sakagami Jiro.  He died on March 10, 2011, which was a day before the big tsunami and earthquake in the northeast.  The media couldn't cover his eulogy well until a year later.

To maintain their comedy spontaneous and fresh, they didn't have meals or drinks together because most comedian teams break up easily.  But toward the end of Jiro san's life, they had a meal or two together, and Jiro san told his wife how much he enjoyed it.

They both became the head of their local baseball team, and Jiro san started a school of comedians, and he was the principal of the school.  Just before I came to the U.S. in 1970, they were at the beginning of their career, and they were the funniest.  Just a thought of them makes me smile.


Rebb said...

Keiko, I tried to watch the video, but it brought me somewhere unfamiliar and I didn't see a video.

I admire people that are naturally funny and are able to react to situations spontaneously.

keiko amano said...


Thank you for letting me know.
The link is correct, but I don't know why it does not work. Please cut and paste the following keywords and search in youtube. Please let me know what you think of it.


Rebb said...

Yay! The link works now. I love the singing and dancing part. It was really funny. : )

keiko amano said...

I'm glad you could see it! I should get back to do more blog. FB is getting boring.

Rebb said...

It's always great to read your blogs. I guess everything has a point of becoming boring and after a break it becomes like new again.

I recently finished reading Yasunari Kawabata's Thousand Cranes. I really enjoyed it. And I just started reading Natsume Soseki's Kokoro. The translator, Meredith McKinney, has a note in the beginning how Kokoro is complex and best described as "the thininking and feeling heart," but that for the book she will refer to it as just heart.

Keiko, have you ever heard of a Japanese movie called Departures? I watched it recently. It was very interesting, had it's funny moments, and made me cry; it was a very emotional movie for me, epsecially the end.

keiko amano said...


Am I impressed! I've met very few people who told me they read Japanese literature. Even professors seem to have never read any. Thousand Cranes was, like many well known Japanese authors, written a portion at a time and appeared on a monthly magazine or newspapers. So, plots and story arks are not fixed in the beginning, but I like the method because once we starts to write, the story leads us, and we end up following our story like a child.

I read those stories long long time ago and I was too young to appreciate such stories. But I found kokoro on the internet, so I started to read. If you think it's strange that a young man follow a teacher without much purpose, in that era, it was common to see such relationships. My grandfather always had a young man coming to see him often. As far as I know, they were friends, but clearly my grandfather was teacher and the young man was a disciple. I think it was a common.

About departures, I think I saw the preview. It's about the funeral service workers, right?

Rebb said...


I first got interested in Japanese literature many years ago when I was looking through a regular anthology used for an English class. I was flipping through the book looking at short stories that caught my attention that were not assigned by our instructor. I was in awe with Junichiro Tanizaki’s short story called The Tattooer. It left a deep impression on me and I knew that I wanted to read more Japanese authors. But I went slow and I chose authors that were modern only because I wasn’t sure at the time. Next I read Tanizaki’s short novel, The Key. I loved it. I have several of his other works, but I’ve been waiting for the right time to read them. I’ve read most of Kazuo Ishiguro’s works. But he doesn’t feel like a traditional Japanese author, since he had a British upbringing. I still love his stories though, they feel very British. I really like Haruki Murakami’s The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle. I tried to read Kenzaburo Oe’s book titled A Personal Matter. I could not get into the writing though; it felt too Western to me. It felt like an American writer was writing it.

My last landlord’s wife was Japanese. We went to lunch a few times. I told her how I liked Tanizaki and she said he was overrated and that I should read Kawabata. She might have mentioned someone else, but i can't remember. I kept the mental note and recently I was reading a book about books that mentioned Thousand Cranes and I wanted to read right then and there and I checked it out from the library. I also have a book by Yukio Mishima: The Decay of the Angel that I bought many years ago, but recently pulled it out of a box. I hope to read it soon.

Let me know if you think there are any other Japanese authors that may be in translation that I should/could read.

I think you’re right about how once we start to write, the story leads us, and we end up following.

The type of relationship in the story makes sense to me. I feel as though I’ve had informal types of small exchanges and on other occasions I’ve wanted to approach someone much older just as this young man did.

Yes, that’s the movie. I was so curious if how they depict the ceremony for the dead is true or if a bit of artistic license was taken. It was quite beautiful.

keiko amano said...


I don't read translations of Japanese works, and I'm not a Japanologist. Also, I read those classics long long ago, and I know I'm not interested in reading it again. As I said before, I'm not a fan of fiction and those of Tanizaki or Ooe or most of the authors you listed.

But if you haven't, I want to recommend you or everyone in the world, Genji Monogatari, which is the world oldest novel.

Right now, I happen to be reading Ishiguro's "An Artist of the Floating World." I'm not a fan, but I read randomly for my specific interest such as the style of narration, how the author solved particular language problems, how he described the particular sentiment of a certain class, and so on. Just reading 10 pages or so, I already got a lot out of it, so, I might not finish reading it.

Rebb said...

Thanks for sharing the recommendation, Keiko.