Published in The Rafu Shimpo on Jan. 5, 2013

Christmas ’12 lingered a while, then quickly became a prelude for the incoming new year. Now is the season of “omedetos,” respectful bows and “yoroshikus.” Holiday cheer segues to “Happy New Year” salutations, mochi substitutes for everything nice.

But CR2S does not bow to convention when it comes to making resolutions. When you stop to give it some thought, what is a reso other than a hope to accomplish something significant? Not a vow or a promise, merely an “I will try . . .” How often have we heard those words before? Or you have uttered recently?

Naw, we’re not in a belated “bah, humbug” frame of mind. More like being a bland, conservative California Republican.

CR2S is really looking forward to 2013. With something resembling vigor and zest. Which isn’t saying much these days, but certainly promising. No, let’s take that back [but not erase]. Memory reminds that in 2011, the dilemma was weighing the (de)merits of, gasp, relocating [still luv that word] to a “facility” [nee: purgatory]; last year was safely ensconced as a Keiro Retirement Home resident without [too much] regret. More importantly, 2012 [my Year of the Dragon] was 12 whole months sans hospital stay. I’m convinced rehab is for buildings and Lindsay Lohan, not for me.

That was then, this is now. So, until we decide what to realistically hope for in this Year of the Snake, let’s slither back to some 2012 leftovers.

When various television stations set up their weather reports [especially Ch. 5], there in the background is a pan shot of LAX and the lighted pylons at the entryway. For the past year I have tried counting how many there are. Because it stays on camera for such a short time and only at a certain angle, I’m not certain whether there are 14 or 15. So why do I bother with such an inane challenge? Because someday it will be a “Jeopardy!” question and I will be the only one with the correct answer.

By no means making light of a sad occasion, but it was continual torture when television talking heads reported the passing of Sen. Daniel K. Inouye. Reporters who have no problem with Chinese, Slav or Russian names continue to disrespect our sole, iconic hero by forever mispronouncing his name, an abomination of the first order. E-noh-eh, fer cryin’ out loud, not Eye-no-way or In-oh-way.  [And the K is for Ken, thus the son is a junior.]

I recall first meeting a youthful Inouye at Kono Hawaii, once a popular Orange County restaurant, when he first came stateside; an unknown JA candidate for Congress being introduced to the locals by owner Ken Kono. Momentarily unsure how to shake hands, the awkward moment was overlooked when it was pointed out our wives were both Margarets.

I had no idea what Moses’ voice might’ve sounded like, but when Inouye spoke while extending his left hand, I was floored by the most resonant, vibrant voice I had ever heard! Hands down, he was one of a kind, our best in every respect.

Whew, those of us who make under $450,000 barely survived the Fiscal Cliff!

=  *  =

“O” Report: On Xmas Eve there was a “tap tap tap” at 12:34 a.m. On New Year’s Eve there was a loud thump at 3:46, followed by a 4:02 telephone ring. Whether significant or not, you tell me. For the month of December there were but 14 visits, a new low. Since there isn’t that much interest in simply counting door-knock episodes, avid followers of “The O-bah-kehs” are now focusing on my claim of possible incarnation; the belief that the mysterious, invisible feminine “Haruko O” has taken human form and Haruo has departed.

CR2S may be guilty of whatever form of madness you can think of: Delirium, idiocy, derangement, whatever. Methinks/hopes the most skeptical of you will allow some wiggle room considering what we’ve gone through for the better part of a year. The question before the house: Does the sudden materialization of a live [female] person have meaning? To feed the flame of debate, I could point out some other thought-provoking incidents. But I won’t. For now I’m taking the 5th [Amendment and Gray Goose vodka]. If perchance this new adventure is the last gasp of a doddering romantic, a fanciful flight of imagination doesn’t matter; at least it will add needed allure to ensuing columns.

But if everything should suddenly return to normalcy and boredom, we can join hands in regret, shikata-ga-nais and all that wise Japanese stuff. A spot of tea and sympathy would then be appropriate, and a towel to wipe the pie off my face. But for now, gambatte, let’s live for the moment.


W.T. Wimpy Hiroto can be reached at Opinions expressed in this column are not necessarily those of The Rafu Shimpo.

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