Life in the Land of the Rising Sun

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

(Feeling) Down, (But Not Up) Set, Hike (ooh!)!!!!

東風寒さ
のろのろ車
無言礼

kochi samusa [The coldness of the East Wind]
noronoro kuruma [A car creeps along]
mugon rei [A mute salute]

I can't really say that we were friends. We rarely spoke. We weren't in the same department, and we were never assigned to the same grade. His sudden loss was still a shock. True, his reputation was kind of mixed, and a lot of students made fun of him, but they always did so in an affectionate way. The fact was that he was widely loved. His habit of giving a screaming gift of kiai (life energy), karate-style, to students that had trouble solving his math problems was one of the more colorful features of life at Ye Olde Academy. Hearing that howl from down the hall in the middle of a lesson period brought both a smile and a sense that an ancient spirit was somehow dwelling within these winding corridors. Now that howl is silent...as silent as the mass of students and teachers standing in mute respect as the hearse does a slow drive-by through the campus.

Cancer is such a horrible thing.

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8 Comments:

  • I'm sorry. My thoughts are with you and the school. He sounds like a wonderful teacher and the world will miss him.

    Kami

    By Blogger Rory, at 1:36 AM  

  • I will second that.

    By Blogger Don Snabulus, at 2:27 AM  

  • It's strange feeling loss from a distance. And you are right. Cancer is a horrid thing.

    By OpenID nikkipolani, at 2:59 AM  

  • Sorry to hear of the loss of your colleague. The kids will remember him and his kiai with affection.

    By Blogger Olivia, at 7:10 AM  

  • With each death, the size of God's MIGHTY KINGDOM grows. And you can call Him God by any name you choose, except Lucifer, for which I fear He may take offense.

    By Anonymous Dave, at 9:08 AM  

  • Bummer, random strikes like that make you wonder sometimes...makes me think I should some ducks in order...

    By Blogger ladybug, at 10:37 AM  

  • thinking of you and the students...

    By Blogger Swinebread, at 2:39 PM  

  • 'What the caterpillar perceives is the end, to the butterfly is just the beginning'

    Still, sad that so many people die unnecessarily from cancer.

    By Blogger Pandabonium, at 6:23 PM  

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