wife

Current Japan PM’s wife offers him tough love

The last PM’s wife claimed to have traveled to Venus and to feed daily by eating the sun with her husband. Current Prime Minister’s wife Kan Nobuko wife said that if she lived her life again, she would not choose the life she had already lived. And her reports of tough love suggest that their daily life is full of volatile policy and personal conflicts.

From the BBC News (via tipster Christophe):

The prime minister’s wife said she supported him by giving him such a tough time at home, and that he preferred going to parliament for question time.

“My husband sometimes says to me: ‘I really hate going to the Diet because everyone is so mean and critical, but it’s a lot easier being subjected to this criticism at the Diet than fighting at home with you’,” she said.

“That’s a way to get him out of the house and go to the Diet, so maybe that’s the way I can support him.”

These would be unimaginable words spoken by the Stepfordly obedient and adoring wives of United States presidents. Is this a sign of freedom and power, or something else entirely?

Unmentioned in this new story is the role that Ms Kan reportedly played rehabilitating her husband’s political image after a sexual harassment scandal in the 1990s. Others credit her outspokenness to the powerless of Japanese women, whose statements do not carry much importance no matter how incendiary.

Oh, and apparently she wear very elegant kimonos and speaks in a vulgar manner. I will try to learn more about Ms Kan.

(Don’t worry, Kathryn, there’ll be more Nakano yankii hotties soon after this political detour).

Doll house where Times Square bomber lived in Connecticut

I don’t know why but I am captivated by this night shot of the Times Square bomber’s Connecticut home. It looks like a doll house. He lived there with his wife and two young children, and left each morning well dressed and headed for “Wall Street.”

Update: I am captivated by the domestic details: “There were packets of Nair, moisturizer with Arabic writing on the back, a makeup brush, a Japanese cherry blossom scent body spritzer, wrapping paper and gift bags that appeared to be for baby gifts.” (via New York Times)

Nakagawa is dead!

Nakagawa, x-Finance Minister

Japan’s ex Finance Minister Shoichi Nakagawa found dead in bed by his wife this morning. He’s the guy who got fired for mixing booze and pain killers before appearing at the G-7 global Finance Minister meeting this spring. He was 56.

From the Wall Street Journal: “considered extremely intelligent but also noted for his temper, [Nakagawa] had served in parliament for 26 years. The seat had previously been held by his father, Ichiro Nakagawa . . . . The senior Mr. Nakagawa died in 1983 in what police said was a suicide.

And the Japan Times reports the presence of vomit, sleeping pills and alcohol. Plus this observation from his wife the night before: “When Nakagawa’s 50-year-old wife came home at around 9 p.m. Saturday, she saw him sleeping half on the floor with his upper body face down on the bed, but she did not sense anything was wrong, they said.”

Queer-Straight Divide

Out the door

As many of my readers know, I am maintaining two blogs: this one about personal interests (ranging oddly from flowers to pottery to male hair and female geeks), and another about a public policy research project sponsored by a prominent foundation and corporation. I have purposely not linked the two blogs, so as to provide more freedom for me to write candidly about my thoughts and interests in this blog.

Prior to moving to Tokyo, I have always been out. Youthful activism and a hostile academic environment shaped my professional career in unexpected ways. It is ironic that the elite academic department that blacklisted me is one that claims a dedication to cultural relativism and openness. I have no regrets, and have been able to reclaim and re-purpose my academic training into a career first in industry and now in public policy.

Creating a new life in Tokyo presents new challenges to a queer identity. With no threat of anti-gay violence in Japan, the flip side is a complete expectation of heterosexuality. And, for the first time, perhaps because of middle age, a new environment, a desire to “be harmonious,” and the sheer quantity of new people I meet every week, I feel an unfamiliar hesitation to challenge conceptions when I am asking new contacts for help and orientation.

This has led to some awkward situations for me. Continue reading long post