This morning as I was prepping her for our medical phone consult:

Me: The nurse will just ask you general questions like – Do you exercise?  Do you get enough sleep?

Akemi: Do you see ghosts?  Do you see aliens?

Me: Those questions are more likely to come up during your Mental Health assessment.

Akemi: And if you see ghosts at night, you have brain issues.

Me: Only at night?

Akemi: Yes.  People may see ghosts or aliens or God.

She considers.

Akemi: Do you know who sees God a lot?

Me: Who?

Akemi: Pirates.

Me: Pirates?  Why pirates?

Akemi: Pi-rets.  (enunciating)  Pi-ROTS.

Me: Pilots?

Akemi: They go up into space.

Me:  Oh.  Astronauts.

Akemi: Yes.  A lot of them see God because the air pressure – how do you say? – is too high or too low, so they see things.

Me: Like God.

Akemi:  Yes.  And they say God is very nice guy.


Akemi: So nice to know.

24 thoughts on “May 21, 2014: Conversations with my Japanese girlfriend!

  1. @Yes. A lot of them see God because the air pressure – how do you say? – is too high or too low, so they see things.

    I must admit, I’ve never heard of that. I thought most astronauts these days have extensive training so they’re pretty alert when going up into space?

    I’ve heard of the Overview effect which is quite interesting.

  2. 😆

    Reminds me of a favorite batch of jokes of mine…

    What do you call a guy with no arms and legs in the water? Bob.

    Same guy on the front porch? Matt.

    Same guy in a hole? Phil.

    Same guy on the wall? Art.

    Same guy in a pile of leaves? Russell.

    Same guy in a hot tub? Stew.

    Same guy in a mailbox? Bill.

    Same guy under a car? Axel.

    Same guy in the bathroom? John.

    What do you call a girl with one leg? Eileen (Ilene).

    Same girl in China? Irene.

    So very sorry for all that… 😛


  3. Perhaps Akemi was thinking of the famous John Gillespie Poem?

    From :

    “Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth, And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings; Sunward I’ve climbed and joined the tumbling mirth of sun-split clouds -and done a hundred things You have not dreamed of -wheeled and soared and swung high in the sunlit silence. Hovering there I’ve chased the shouting wind along and flung my eager craft through footless halls of air.

    “Up, up the long delirious burning blue I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace, where never lark, or even eagle, flew; and, while with silent, lifting mind I’ve trod the high untrespassed sanctity of space, put out my hand and touched the face of God.”


    Not quite in the same category, but my kids had a similar set of jokes that they would go through on the way to the various kids softball and football games:

    What do you call a baseball player with no arms and no legs?

    First Base!

    What do you call a football player with no arms and no legs?

    A tackle dummy!

    And the rest I can’t remember, but they used to go on through every sport in a similar fashion

  4. @JeffW: I hope you enjoyed Old Man’s War. My nom de guerre was Sparrowhawk long before I read the book, but it was kind of fun to see the name show up as one of the ships.

  5. I think all those who flew the x-302 were not astronauts. I guess seeing ghosts is better than seeing dead people. Hello Maj. Tom.

  6. Akemi 😉 is right more than you think:

    First they named The Lunnar effect today know as Overview effect.

    But not is the air pressure effect is a psycological issue.

    For example:

    Charlie Duke, a member of the Apollo 16 mission in April 1972, looked out at his hatch at the lunar landscape and had a mystical vision of the presence of the divine.

    Edgar Mitchell was a member of the third successful mission to the moon in January 1971 and holds the joint record for the longest moon walk (9 hours and 17 minutes). While looking out at the earth from his spaceship, he felt an overpowering sense of euphoria and tranquility, and shifted into a different state of consciousness in which he perceived the meaning of the universe. (He said)

    Gene Cerman, who took part in two lunar missions – Apollo 10 and 16 – had a similar vision of meaning and purpose. Looking at the earth from space, he felt that ‘It was too beautiful to happen by accident…There has to be a creator of the universe who stands above the religions that we ourselves create.

  7. someone said:
    hopefully david hewlett can be involved?
    …and Claudia Black
    Ben Browder too why not?

  8. I think pirates see God, too. Just cuz being at sea without oranges causes scurvy. Or something.

    I’m so excited about the sci-fi show you’re working on right now. And I have no clue what it is. I just know I’ll love it though.

  9. @skua

    The Overview effect hasn’t been known to cause hallucinations. In most cases its just a change of perspective on the world and the universe by Astronauts who are in Space and are looking on the Earth. The sense of borders disappears.

  10. Mike from Canada: Interesting article. I tend to agree. However, there are some fanatical gluten-free believers out there and I’m not telling them! 😉

    Das: Did you see my post yesterday (near the end)? If not, I made gluten free peanut butter cookies and they were good. Link is on yesterday’s post if you’re interested.

    Reading Akemi’s comments are always fascinating. I forget how complex the English language is until then.

    How is your Japanese coming along Mr. M.? My Spanish has come to a standstill. 🙁

  11. As a ‘fanatical gluten-free believer’ 😉 I don’t 100% agree with the article Mike From Canada posted, based on my experience. I also think it’s a bit of a kick in the pants to Celiac sufferers to bring this stuff out during Celiac Awareness Month, mostly because people will read articles like that and think that people with Celiac disease aren’t really sickened by gluten, and so they won’t take them serious when they say they can’t be exposed to it.

    Also, as a woman I get tired of doctors telling my sex that their illnesses are all in their heads. It’s an insult, and one reason heart disease and ovarian cancer go undetected in women – doctors blame symptoms on psychological rather than physiological reasons. Women also tend to be more prone to auto-immune disorders (such as lupus and multiple sclerosis) and since many of these disorders often can’t be clearly diagnosed they’re often grouped by symptoms and called ‘syndromes’ – which basically means we don’t know what the hell’s wrong with you and we’re not going to try to find out.

    Another thing to keep in mind (according to my friend with Celiac, who got this information from her doctor), the body doesn’t always react immediately to gluten exposure, making it very difficult to pinpoint the cause/effect. For Celiac sufferers, it also can take up to 2 years for the body to completely heal from the damage gluten caused to the body, especially the small intestine. For those with a sensitivity to gluten (which doesn’t affect the small intestine the same way), it still takes time for the body to heal, so it will be sensitive to other foods for a while even after the gluten is removed from the diet. While I do believe there are those who think they need to avoid gluten when they really don’t have to, I also believe that there are those who genuinely need to avoid gluten because their bodies have a negative reaction to it. Studies have some benefit, but in the end it really depends on how a person feels, and to not belittle them by saying it’s all in their heads.

    My last word on the subject, I promise. 🙂


  12. I see zombies on the downtown bus, does that count? I foresee a fun experience being poked and prodded in the name of insurance.

    Enjoying the first slow day in months, zero calls, no lines at CVS, empty streets, as people have vanished for the holidays.

    @ Tam Dixon – Que? ¡No me digas!

  13. The article does not say that gluten does not cause problems for Celiac sufferers. It speaks of people who do not have Celiac.

    “They called this non-celiac gluten sensitivity.”

  14. shinyhula: I’ll try and get back to Spanish after my son leaves home in July. Plus, the humane society I work at is closing soon. I’ll have plenty of free time to study then.

  15. Das: Love you Das! I believe the diet is a wonderful thing if you need it. However, I spent the weekend with ‘fanatical gluten-free believers’ and I watched them scarf down bread sticks when no one was looking. Thankfully, they suffered no ill affects. Can’t say I blame them because those breadsticks were delicious!

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