Thursday, December 11, 2008

*Waiting for the Cafeteria to Clear*

So I can eat there when it isn't so crazy loud that I want to do something drastic. If I do something drastic, my life movie might go up from a PG-13 to an R, and then I'd lose my whole tween audience. They're my bread and butter.

But you, darling, are my water.

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Anyway, I was in a good mood but now I'm just kinda hungry. I wanted to post something while I was in a good mood. But-I'm-HUNGRY! So, maybe this wasn't the geniusest (ha) idea I ever came up with. And I have homework. Like, for real. The kind that's due in oh, two hours. Actually, it's just a reading, and I think it's ten pages AND a play, so... But anyway, I've it nonetheless.

Also, I picked up Arthur Waley's translation of the Tale of Genji, because the fellow in my book club quoted an Amazon.com review supposedly by an East Asian studies graduate student, who said that Waley's (from 1930) is better than Seidensticker's (from the 70's?), after I explained that I heard Seidensticker was better. Given that my info comes from oh, the entire Asian Studies scholarly community, plus a Princeton educated Japanese Literature PhD, I think I win.

But this guy always has to know the most. He claims to be good with figuring out the best translations, but obviously not with Genji. Because Waley slaughters the poetry.

Japanese poetry, as you probably know, is syllabic based rather than rhyme based. You know, like a haiku is 5 syllables-7 syllables- 5 syllables. Rhyming is not important. Yet, Waley makes the Japanese poems rhyme. He basically turns it into a piece of Western literature by using Westerm metaphors and poetic schemes (hoorah for couplets but not when they're forged out of waka).

I don't really know what to say to him because I don't want to be jerkly, but I also think he ought to have allowed that I probably know more than him about this particular topic. He knows I'm in Tokyo studying Japanese lit, so...?

WTF. Gasp, I swore in acronym. Or... that's not an acronym is it? Someone tell me what it's actually called and I'll fix it and we'll pretend this little note never happened.

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To the food! <3

1 comment:

Sacrosanct said...

I had Ramen tonight and I thought of you!