Summit Tour, The Hillclimb and the Garden Terrace

(Continuing from Part 1 of the Summit Tour.) All conventions are divided into three parts: the exhibition hall, the sessions, and the hallways. And in my experience, the hallways are what it’s all about. That’s where you meet people, renew acquaintances, and make plans. And take selfies. At the Summit, the hallway experience promises to …

Summit Tour, Exhibition Hall

Here’s the first in a series of posts sharing my impressions and photos of the new Seattle Convention Center Summit, from the Public Open House last Thursday, January 26, 2023. Highlights of the Exhibition Hall (Lower Level): Why I care: My career as a journalist and writer has taken me to conference venues around the …

Sounds Like

For writer and translator Polly Barton, you’ll find “the beating heart of Japanese” in onomatopoeia, mimetic language that sounds like what the words signify. Bow-wow. Woof-woof. ワンワン. (Wan-wan, rhymes with “bonbon.”) Japanese has a massive onomatopoeic vocabulary second only to Korean, claims Barton, who set out to master this essential aspect of the language: “I …

Memoir, 9/11, and the Literature of Technology and Political Violence: A conversation with ChatGPT

Tell a story about a man riding the bus from New Jersey to New York, in the style of a KGB report The subject, identified as John Smith, boarded the bus in New Jersey at approximately 8:00am on the morning of January 12th, 2023. He was observed to be carrying a black backpack and wearing …

The 5 Whys

Doshite nihongo o benkyo-saretan desu ka? どうして日本語を勉強されたのですか。 Why are you studying Japanese? It all started in 1995 with a lightly used copy of Japanese for Busy People and a Kanji workbook, gifts from a good friend who had briefly attempted, and then abandoned, the project of learning Japanese. I became fascinated by the dual syllabaries, …