Week 33, 2023

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✱ Last Sunday it was Father’s Day here in Brazil. I’m lucky enough to live at a walk’s distance from my parents’ house, so I visit them often, almost on a weekly basis, and have plenty of opportunities to talk to them and to catch up with whatever is going on. Even so, last Sunday we all got together — my parents, my sister and brother-in-law, my wife and kids to have lunch and spend some family time together. It is always nice to do such things because I love my family. If it was Father’s Day where you live too, last Sunday, I hope you had the opportunity to be with your kin and with whom you love, spending some quality time together… 😊😊

✱ I used to love watching Takeshi’s Castle! It aired during the late 80’s and early 90’s here in Brazil — although in a licensed version, locally developed by Rede Globo, one of the Brazilian TV broadcasters — and made me laugh lots and lots. Later I found out that the original, Japanese produced show, aired in Brazil on cable, too, during 2018, on Comedy Central. The thing is Amazon Prime just released a remake of the show, currently a single season composed of 8 episodes. I’ve watched the first episode with my children and I could relive all the laughs I had with the original programs. Pretty nostalgic for me.

✱ I don’t usually talk about soccer here — although I support São Paulo since I was about 12 or 13 years old. But I needed to do it this week, at least this one time, first because São Paulo played the second of two matches trying to reach the final round of Copa do Brasil, aiming for the only national title it currently doesn’t have; and second because Lucas Moura, revealed in São Paulo during the 2010 to 2012 seasons and, to me, one of the best players the team ever had, returned to playing in São Paulo, after 10 years away, during which he played for PSG and Tottenham. It was partially thanks to him that my team won a place at the final round scoring 2-0 against Corinthians, one of its biggest rivals. Lucas scored the second goal, sealing the score and gaining us the opportunity to (maybe) finally conquer this last title. Yet to be seen, but coming this far was really, really nice.

✱ I know very well that one of the important parts in learning a new language is trying to practice writing — and by chance I’ve come across a very interesting resource online where it’s possible to do it… while journaling! I’ve heard many people praising journals as good means to put your learnings on paper, and Journaly does exactly that. You can write as many posts as you want in your target language in your journal for free, and have them read by people who are native and are there learning other languages. These people then read your texts, applauding them for incentive and also giving you honest feedback and corrections, all things that contribute to making you learn better. I found it very appealing for me and my Japanese learning, so much that I’ve created an account there, even though I’ve only had the time to post there once so far. Here’s what I’ve posted, by the way:


✱ Still regarding Japanese, that’s not at all an intuitive language for me, as a western person, having been raised speaking an European language, Portuguese, to learn. And knowing English doesn’t help either, except for being able to find plenty of resources to learn by myself of course. In that sense it was very fortunate for me to come across Japanese For The Western Brain, a series of small essays describing Japanese grammar in a non-grammar way, that is, quoting Kim Allen, the site’s author, “[…] so that people who have a working knowledge of English grammar (such as what you learned in school, even if you’ve forgotten some of the details) will be able to compare and contrast English and Japanese grammar“. I’ve been reading it this week and I can say it’s a very spirited text, helping to prepare one’s mind to adjust to Japanese.

Keep walking, besides being the slogan of a famous beverage, is something I’m trying to improve at, for health reasons. It’s been sometime now that I’ve heard from a doctor that one should walk 10,000 steps daily — but that is not an easy task for many, me included. What I’ve decided to do was to adapt to the circumstances… using the 改善 (Kaizen) continuous improvement principles, I’ve established to try to meet 6,000 steps a day. Still not that easy for me but much more attainable at the moment. This week I got to reach the goal 4 in 7 days. And I still hope to improve in weeks to come… 💪💪

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