I took my friend Barry to the ceramic studio, and he wanted to make ojizō-samas. You can see the three that we made, plus the one that the sensei created. Mine is on the right. Ojizō-samas, related to the Kṣitigarbha bodhisattva, is a guardian of dead children, of souls in the underworld, of travelers, and of firefighters. He is often seen wearing cloth bibs and children’s clothing. What should mine wear?
Breaking with tradition, Hatoyama Miyuki, wife of Japan’s new PM, plans to take a visible role as Japan’s First Lady. Frankly, I had never seen a photo of Mrs Aso, Mrs Fukuda, Mrs Abe or Mrs Koizumi. So it’s revolutionary news that Japan may be on the cusp of welcoming its first First Lady.
What do we know about Miyuki-sama? She was born in China during the war, a former actress, cookbook author, television personality, and a “life composer.” She believes she shares “a sensibility” with Michelle Obama, and hopes to meet her. Mostly, she is a tireless promoter of her husband, with Wikipedia reporting that she chooses her husband’s outfits and (personally?) styles his hair.
My favorite story so far is how she explains her husband’s “alien” nickname. According to the loyal wife, he was given the name by political adversaries since he is so different from old-style politics. Unh, really?! I thought it was because he’s extraordinarily ugly, with a weird-shaped head on a smallish body. And it’s certainly better than being referred to as “the guy with the dead fish face.”
But, Miyuki-sama, please do not let me discourage your spin, conjugal devotion, or quest for the limelight. Finally, with the (first?) emergence of a First Lady of Japan, this is Japanese “change” that I fully support. Bring on the outfits, social causes, cultural activities, and style.
Update: A second Japan Times article adds even more outrageous details. Miyuki-sama is a former singer and dancer in the very popular Takarazuka Revue all-female theater troupe. And she has a spiritual side that puts Shirley MacLain to shame. She has written in a book that, while sleeping, her soul flew in a triangle shaped UFO to Venus. On a television program, she also claimed that she eats the sun, and that it gives her “enormous energy.” Even better, she added, “My husband has recently started doing that, too.” Oh, and she met Tom Cruise in a previous life, claims he was previously Japanese, and dreams of making a Hollywood movie with him.
It must be wonderful to be so fabulously wealthy, and to live in a country where such outlandish views are neither questioned nor ridiculed. Dearest husband, please make me Japan’s next First Lady!
Second Update: There’s also a New York Times article with the exact same content, plus some angry online reader replies and many replies by the reporter. Plus this amazing photo of the Hatoyamas as a young couple What happened to his looks? Can I buy her wig? And why has no one commented on this EXCITING news?!