Nakatani Apartment, Nagoya

Today my host mom had a big Halloween Labo Party. We went down to a nursing home and performed some songbirds for some grandpas and grandmas. They seemed to enjoy it, especially the part where they got to hand out candy to trick-or-treating little kids.

It never comes up other than in my own head, but one of the interesting things about this country is the fact that circumstances were very different about 65 years ago. WWII is nothing to me but a few grainy photographs and some important lessons of things not to repeat, but a significant amount of people still remember it first-hand. All the time it happens, I'll see a more venerable gentleman or lady on the subway, and imagine: what would I think of me if I were them?

You see it all the time in America, people saying Asians all look the same. It's not something to be surprised at; our perceptiveness is tuned to the kinds of people we grow up and live with. This goes the other way, too. I've had people tell me that westerners all look the same, without any hint of prejudice. I do my best to stand out, but there aren't a whole lot of other foreigners for me to stand out against.

I wonder, then, what kind of stereotypes am I falling into? This is entirely moot, because people here are very good at not expressing their thoughts (out of politeness, the whole "wa" culture etc.). Still, that makes me all the more curious.