Wrong about Japan

a book review

titleWrong about Japan
authorPeter Carey
date reviewed2006.08.13
genreAutobiography
isbn9781400078363

This is a ramble about a father-son trip to Japan that seems to have been inspired by the idea that there's some kind of anime/manga culture that Anglophone visitors to the country can glom onto. I've seen this happen with bloggers and young backpackers who hang around in Akihabara and now there's this book.

I give the author credit for titling the book honestly, he does come across as documenting how the loosely conceived concept behind the trip was a bust.

Honestly, I think that an editor or perhaps a publisher should have intervened before this book made it to print. Tellingly, I found this book in a discount book store for foreigners in Shibuya that didn't last very long.

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rand()m quote

(In which I leave the final word to someone else.)

If I had my life to live over, I'd try to make more mistakes next time. I would relax, I would limber up, I would be crazier than I've been on this trip. I know very few things I'd take seriously any more. I'd certainly be less hygenic... I would take more chances, I would take more trips, I would scale more mountains, I would swim more rivers, and I would watch more sunsets. I would eat more ice cream and fewer beans. I would have more actual troubles and fewer imaginary ones. Oh, I've had my moments, and if I had to do it all over again, I'd have many more of them, in fact I'd try not to have anything else, just moments, one after another, instead of living so many years ahead of my day. If I had it to do all over again, I'd travel lighter, much lighter than I have. I would start barefoot earlier in the spring, and I'd stay that way later in the fall. And I would ride more merry-go-rounds, and catch more gold rings, and greet more people and pick more flowers and dance more often. If I had it to do all over again - but you see, I don't.

-Jorge Luis Borges

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