Don't Eat With Your Mouth Full

Where can we live but days?

steepholm steepholm
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Hanko Chief!
My italki friend Chiho-san from Kyushu very kindly sent me this pair of hanko or inkan (I'm not sure whether there's a difference in meaning between these words). These seals are much used by Japanese people when they need to sign their names, and mine, as you can see, come with a pouch and integral ink pad.

One of the seals simply has my name, Cathy, in katakana - i.e. Kyashi = キャシー. The other has a pair of kanji representing the sounds "ka" and "shi". Of course, there are numerous possible pairs of kanji that have those particular sounds associated with them, so I had a choice. The shortlist came down to: 佳志 (roughly, "great faith") and 果詩 ("fruit poetry"). Naturally I chose the latter.


If for some reason you wish to know much, much more about name seals, you find out here. Meanwhile, I'm very pleased with mine!

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"Great faith" doesn't sound too bad; til one sees "fruit poetry" coming at one, so I quite understand!

I know, right?

Who wouldn't want to be 'fruit poetry'? It's wonderful!

I'm enjoying my new incarnation.

Ooh, those are lovely! I used to have one somewhere, but it wasn't based on my actual name, since I got it in a kitschy import shop in Seattle somewhere. (Although 翼 - tsubasa, "wing" - is what I have tattooed on my actual body, so would make sense, I think it's usually a guy's name. Then again, I don't mind if nobody else does.)

Well, it's a very nice kanji!

It is! Also I think 'fruit poetry' is an excellent name.

The "fruit" character looked terribly familiar, and I finally realized it resembles the one kanji character I have ever learned, 東.

That's pretty similar, true, but your one (as you probably know) means 'East'.

I learned it from my 7th-grade English teacher, Gary Higashi. (I had an unsettling time yesterday after I Googled his name and found there was a sex offender of the same name and approximate age and location. It took me a bit to work out that that was definitely not he.)

Well, that makes sense (I mean his name, not the sex-offender bit!).

'Fruit poetry' is very fine. Congratulations.

I assume you know about Cordwainer Smith?

No, I don't. At least, the name is vaguely familiar, but nothing more than that. Do elucidate!

SF author (highly recommended), real name Paul Linebarger: un Chinese, Lin Bah Loh, or 'Forest of Incandescent Bliss'.


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