Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Yearly Mistake

A reader pointed out that in my final Glimpses of Japan column of 2008 I made a truly silly mistake. I referred to it as the last column of 2009.

Every year for a week or so I have trouble remembering to use the new year when writing dates. This time at least it was a different mistake.

No less careless, though.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Seasoned Greetings

Merry Christmas!

I'd advise readers to try to avoid excess that they'll regret the next day, but that's not behavior that I've exhibited much in my life.

Besides, if you're going to regret, I believe it's better to regret what you've done rather than what you didn't do.

I spent the early hours of this morning speaking with a Finnish guy claiming to be Santa Claus. He certainly looked the part, beard, red suit, and all. There was also a girl in the place done up as a red-nosed reindeer. I hadn't drunk enough that there's any doubt that they were real, either.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Bistro Vin Beaux

It's small and hard to find, but this place is one of those "best kept secrets" you hear about. It's also a good candidate for "that romantic little French place".

The food's great, the couple that runs the place (he cooks in the open kitchen and she waits the three tables and half-dozen counter seats) do a fine job of making you feel at home and welcome, and the wine list, although not extensive, is well-chosen and reasonably priced.

Every time I go, I tell myself that I should arrange my schedule so that I could go more often.

I recommend making reservations, and bring cash because I don't believe they take credit cards.

It might be well to go sooner rather than later, because the couple must be getting close to retirement age.

Bi-partisan Season's Greetings

I got this from a friend today (a Democrat as it happens, but that doesn't matter), and couldn't resist posting it.

To All My
Democrat Friends:

Please accept with no obligation, implied or implicit, my best wishes for an environmentally conscious, socially responsible, low-stress, non-addictive, gender-neutral celebration of the winter solstice holiday, practiced within the most enjoyable traditions of the religious persuasion of your choice, or secular practices of your choice, with respect for the religious/secular persuasion and/or traditions of others; or their choice not to practice religious or secular traditions at all.

I also wish you a fiscally successful, personally fulfilling and medically uncomplicated recognition of the onset of the generally accepted calendar year 2009, but not without due respect for the calendars of choice of other cultures whose contributions to society have helped make America great. Not to imply that America is necessarily greater than any other country nor the only America in the Western Hemisphere. Also, this wish is made without regard to the race, creed, color, age, physical ability, religious faith or sexual preference of the wishee.

To My Republican Friends:

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


I've decided that I want one of these for Christmas.
It's just from the sheer coolness of being able to create sonic booms in your own back yard.
What's not to like about that?