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31 October 2009

Short Novel: Bauhausler, Chapter 7

A story of Japanese woman who experienced Bauhaus art and love romance in Berlin, early 1930's when Nazis came to power.

Please read Introduction first.  

Some of her classmates were obviously communist. She heard former principal of Bauhaus school, Hannes Meyer was communist. Although she was against communism or Marxism, she made good friends with them. She just did not care because she was neither communist nor anything else. She was non-political. As long as she could have fun with them, she could get along with them.

She and her friends went to Berlin's amusement, called "Variete." That was variation of performances such as singing, dances, magic, and circus. They were different from traditional art like opera. That was why it was amusing. Berlin had great entertainment.

One day after classes, she just passed by one class room where Marcus Weiss and communist students gathered. She entered the room and was welcome by students there, though Marcus did not look comfortable. She pretended to listen to what they were talking, which she was not interested in and could never understood.

After the meeting, she talked to Marcus, "Meister, would you do me a favour?"
"What?" said Marcus furiously.
"I want to visit finest variete in Berlin if you know one." said Masako.
"Surprised! A high-society woman like you has interest in such cheap shows."
"Cheap shows?"
"You did not seem to join this communist group's meeting. Variete is something more like commoners' entertainment."
"That is why I want you to take me somewhere I can learn such commoners' entertainment. I am a student of advanced art so I need to learn any kind of arts." said Masako smiling.
"Great, then I will show you." said Marcus smilingly.
Marcus took her to Hanussen's Haus. It had a stage to show performances by Erik Jan Hanussen, known as Berlin's most famous hypnotist, mind-reading and prophet. She heard about his performance before but she and her friends were not interested in such occultic performances.
"Why did you take me here?"
"Well, this is the place where you can learn how deception took place."

Hanussen showed up. People clapped. He invited some of audience to the stage. He made them laugh and sing a song. He showed how he could easily manipulate people.
"He is brilliant, isn't he?" said Marcus.
"Yes, I think so, how did he do that?" said Masako.
"He knows the technique. But not just that, he knows who can be easily manipulated and picked up that kind of people among the audience to the stage, so the whole audience believes anybody can be easily manipulated by him. He not only manipulate people on the stage but also people looking at the stage."
"Kind of complicated" Masako wondered.
"That is how politicians do. Like Nazis. He actually works for Nazis, although he is Jew." said Marcus.
"What? Jewish magician works for Nazis?" Masako said a little bit louder.
"Be quiet, Masako. This is secret, even Nazis don't know about that. He is Czech Jew but pretended Danish aristcrat."
Masako was surprised at what Marcus said. Not just Hanussen being Jew, but how he got to know that.

Next show starts. Hanussen said "Now I would like to read your mind. Would anybody want me to read mind plus give advice as prophet?"
Masako stood up. Hanussen found her.
"Thank you, Young Lady. May I have your name?"
"I am Masako. I am from Japan." said Masako.
"Wow, a beautiful lady from Japan is asking me to read your mind. I am very honored to do that." said Hanussen delightedly.
Masako made a big smile to him. Then he started to stair at her very seriously.
"Well, I guess you are now in love with someone. He is very close to you. You don't know what he is thinking about you. You really want to know. Isn't that right?"
Masako responded by smiling, which just meant he was right.
"I can give you advice. Get close to him, you will have wonderful time with him. But as prophet, I can tell you the time with him won't be so long as you expect. Not because you and he can't but outside force intervenes."
Hanussen smiled confidently. Masako decided not to believe his words. Masako suddenly sat down and looked at Marcus. Marcus didn't seem to react to Hanussen's words.

The calender turned to December, Berlin got colder and colder. Christmas season was near.
After Marcus's class finished, he came up to Masako and said,
"Masako, I wonder if you are still interested in Jewish culture. I would like to invite you to my family's Hannukah Party."
"It is Jewish version of Christmas." said Marcus smilingly.
"Great, I would love to be there." said Masako with big smile.

It was dinner time. Masako was invited to Marcus's uncle's house. Marcus's parents died a few years ago. His uncle and his uncle's wife and a little son were the only relatives to him. For Jewish people, ethnic minority in Germany, Hannukah was most important event to recognize the unity. His uncle, his son and Marcus wore yarmulke, small hat at the party.



Hannukah was an eight-day Jewish holiday commemorating the rededication of the Holy Temple in Jerusalem at the time of the Maccabean Revolt of the 2nd century BCE. That day was eighth day. The candle stand with eight shining candles was placed on the table along with pancakes and other delicious meals.


Uncle as host of the party, sang Jewish songs and prayed and then shared pancakes and meals with guests. It was like new world for Masako, non religious woman from Japan. She really touched new culture, which was holy, sacred and traditional. She was heart warmingly welcome by Marcus's uncle's family. She couldn't believe such people have been outcast of the society.

After the party, Marcus and Masako walked on the street alone. It was late at night. Masako felt like sharing love romance with Marcus. They happen to stop by a furniture shop which displayed Bauhaus's symboic furniture, Wassily Chair in the show-window case. The chair was one of Bauhaus's successful products sold in the market.


"We might not last so long." said Marcus suddenly.
"What are you talking about?"
"About Bauhaus. No matter how we are brilliant, we are losing support here. We have to survive. That is the main theme of our school today."
Masako looked at Marcus's face. He really looked very worried. She realized how he had been desperate because of his status as Jew, communist and a teacher of most advanced type of art.
"We should get support from as many people as possible because we are so brilliant. We can do that, don't we?" Masako shouted.
Marcus said, "Yes, we can. We should do something. Ummm..., oh, we will do Carnival event in February. What if we can do great exhibition and performances there, maybe we can do?"
"Annual event in Germany. Our school is scheduling to hold Carnival Fest to invite a lot of people outside Bauhaus. So we can show how brilliant we are!!
"How nice. We should do that. How about holding stage performance like Variete?"
"Oh, good idea! We used to have stage art class in Dessau, now after we moved to Berlin, we closed that. We can revive that as Carnival Performance. Let's do that! Students become dancers and singers. I can instruct that."
"I want to join that stage performance. I can dance, you know."
"Of course. You are one of the most brilliant students of our school."
Masako and Marcus were very excited.

To be continued to Chapter 8.

15:29 Posted in My novel | Permalink | Comments (0)

25 October 2009

Trip to Okinawa

The main purpose was to meet people in Okinawa who confronts most unwanted unwelcome environmentally destructive and dangerous facilities in Okinawa. I joined them. If you want to know the detail, please read this article.

The below is the video clip I made for the summary of my Anti-US base tour.


However, I really enjoyed sightseeing and leisure in Okinawa, too. Swimming in emerald green sea, attending a concert on the beach, eating delicous food, forest trecking and seeing magnificient views of the island. This is the most beautiful island in the world only if the US fucking bases are gotten rid of. See the below video clip. That's fun part of Okinawa trip.


Since the Cold War is over, their presence is useless. Potential threat, China? No. China is world's largest owner of U.S. treasury bonds. They can't confront China because they owe Chinese a lot. All they do in Okinawa or other base towns in Japan is spread pollution disease, killing endangered mammals, commiting crimes such as rape and murder.


What are they doing? Go back where they belong, where they are welcome. Not in Okinawa, Not elsewhere in Japan. 


13 October 2009

US military is DUGONG KILLER!

In Henoko, Nago-city, Okinawa Prefecture, Southernmost island of Japan, Dugongs lives are endangered by US Marine Base construction.

Negotiation to change the plan is underway between the two governments.  

It is in fact, part of US Military Transformation Program which includes relocation of Marines in Futenma. After Futenma is removed, half of the Marines there will be relocated to Guam, the other half will be to Henoko.

But endangered sea mammals, dugongs inhabit in that coastal area. They eat seaweeds in that sea.

The construction of the base will pollute the sea of that area thus kill that endangered species.


You know what! Americans who criticize Japan's whaling and dolphin hunting are killing such beautiful and endangered sea mammals.

The preview of the film portrays their hypocrisy. Not taking on evil act of their own govermnet but accusing us of sea mammal killer.

Japanese goverment and local people in Okinawa don't want that but the U.S. is pressuring to build that.

Don't they think it would cause damage on their country's reputation among Japanese?

Japanese don't like Americans any more and never want to buy things from Americans.

The U.S. base is not defending Japan at all. China is thought to be potential threat, but China lends so much money to their bankrupt economy.

Actually the U.S. needs financial help from Japan, too. Aren't they wise enough to be concerned about Japanese public opinion for their national interest?

Actually it is time Japanese stop being friend with Americans. They are not decent enough to get along with.

Well, I always try to avoid buying goods made in USA or those of American brands except necessary ones like Microsoft.

Since deployment of Nuclear Aircraft Carrier in Yokosuka port, my feeling towards America was really changed.

In fact, I realized that country sucks. I got tired of Hollywood films and pop music. I am more interested in other countries' culture and my own culture, not the one with no substantial tradition and history.  

Poor country, even a President receives Nobel Peace Prize, they have to continue spending so much money to kill people and destroy environment. The people there are losing jobs, starving and cannot afford medical expenditure. Young Americans join military to get tuition for college education. Obama never deserves Nobel Peace Prize.

I can never believe I used to live in their country and study there for more than 5 years. That is away in the past.  

09 October 2009

Short Novel: Bauhausler, Chapter 6

Please read Introduction first.

Masasko was surprised to know Marcus was Jew. She never thought he was.
"Marcus, have you ever heard of the legend that some of your people also migrated to our country, Japan?"
"What are you talking about?" said Marcus. He seemed to be surprised with her reaction.
"It is a legend that about 2600 years ago, your people arrived in Japan from Israel and settled down there" said Masako delightedly.
"2600 years ago? Is it when 10 of 12 our tribes left Israel because of Assyria's occupation?"
"Interesting thing is that is when our imperial calender year starts. Meaning our majesty is a descendant of Jewish immigrant who established Japan."
Marcus became very curious about her story.
"We have some similarities. Japan's national religious faith, Shinto have some common customs and ceremonies."
"Interesting? What are these?"
"For example, in Japanese Shinto shrine, we wash hands at the entrance. There is a hand-wash place near the entrance. Once you get in, you first have to wash hands and then go to pray."


"Yes. the synagogue has the same thing. To purify before you pray."
"Don't you also use salt for purification?" asked Masako.
"Yes, on Sabath day, we spray salt on bread and eat it. You do the same thing?"
"Well, we don't eat salted bread but use salt to purify ourselves. One of typical things is we spray salt on people who came home back from funeral. The other typical thing is Sumo wrestlers spray salt on the fighting ring before a match. Sumo wrestling is originated from Shinto ceremony."
"Interesting. What else do we have in common?"
"Do you know Ark of Convent, which had been lost for thousands of years?"

Ark of Convent.jpg

"Yes, a famous bible story."
"Actually that exists in Japan as ritural ceremony or you might want to say "Fest"?"
"People carry the box which resembles Ark of Convent, called Omikoshi. It has golden birds on the top just like Ark of Convent. People carry it on their shoulders in group just like ancient Israeli did in the ceremony in front of King David. In some region people cross the river carrying the Omikoshi box as though your anscestors passed the Jordan river."

"Wow, suprised to hear. I have never been to Japan but I wish to see such things if I can visit there some day."
Marcus's response pleased her.
"Surely, you should come to Japan some day.  We have common ground. We are connected" said Masako making a big smile.
Suddenly Marcus face turned sad and said to her.
"What does it matter if we have a common ground or difference? Connected or not?"
"Did I say anything wrong?" said Masako anxiously.
"No, you didn't say anything wrong. I mean, I just don't care whether we have similarities or differences. We are all humans anyway. We can share love or joy or anything else with one another" said Marcus.
Masako was shocked to see Marcus's response. She did not understand what he meant.
"Are you going to be free this afternoon? We have classes only in the morning. After lunch, I can take you to the place where anyone should have shared the same value. I really want to take you there."
Marcus said making a big smile to her. She thought she should go with him. 

Masako was in Marcus's car driving to the city of Dessau, two hours from Berlin. That was where former school building of Bauhaus existed. They, two did not talk each other in the car. Marcus looked very serious and she got nervous by his face.
"There you see, that is where we used to teach and learn" said Marcus and he stopped the car.
She got out of the car and looked at it.


"Wow, this is very nice design" said Masako with surprise. The glass wall building impressed her very much.
"You like that. Yes, because you are Bauhausler and you have the sense of understanding."
Marcus said and was glad with her response.
"Your school is not using this building any more. Why left here?" asked Masako. Actually that was what she had been wondered even before she came to Berlin because at first she heard the school was located in Dessau but soon later it was relocated to Berlin.
"We were kicked out. We had to leave Dessau and restarted in Berlin as private institution."
"What happened? Who kicked out?"
"You know, Bauhaus was at first established in Weimar, 1919 by Walter Gropius. Later the school moved to Dessau in 1925. I joined the school since then. When the school was relocated to Dessau, we were very much welcome by the city councils as revolutionalist. The city gave us aid to construct this new modern style building and our Meister's house. But welcome atmosphere did not last so long."


Marcus looked at her sadly.
"As time passed, growing nationalist movement took on us. The city council was dominated by nationalists." Marcus remembered harsh memories.
"You mean, Nazis?"
"Yeah, they took over the city's politics and banned aid to us. But it was not just by Nazis but many conservative people. They did not like us from the beginning. They called this building "Aquarium" or oriental sense of humor."
"Oriental sense of humor?" Masako was suprised with such furious words.
"Oh, no. I do not mean to offend you. That is how they expressed. They are not familiar with Bauhaus concept. You know, beauty in simplicity, minimalism. They could never understand that."
"Well, that is exactly orientalism, I think. Especially where I come from, we have the concept of seeking beauty in simplified things. It is called "Wabi-Sabi." It is a concept derived from the Buddhist assertion of the Three marks of existence (三法印, sanbōin), specifically impermanence (無常, mujō). We do not like too much decoration in architecture or houses. Finding beauty in simple thing and quiet atmosphere is most important matter in our culture. In that sense our culture might harmonize with Bauhaus" said Masako. She just came up with this wabi-sabi thing not to make him serious any more.
Marcus laughed and said,
"You always surprise me. ha, ha. I am glad to hear that. But to me Bauhaus is a new idea that can be shared with anybody in the world."
"But we are no longer welcome in your society."
"I beleive there should be a time anybody in the world can understand this concept. Whether you are westerner, Asian or anybody else. It benefits all the people in the world. Should be common ground for all of us."
Marcus showed firm commitment as Meister of Bauhaus. Masako found herself attracted to him.


To be continued to Chapter 7.

19:07 Posted in My novel | Permalink | Comments (0) | Tags: israel, judaism

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