Teaching English in Japan

Growing up "American" Losing his sister in camp Getting an English Name Introduction to Film Seagulls Leaving Tule Lake Getting Started in Animation First Short Film Teaching English in Japan Animations for the Government The Red Baron Paintings reflecting on camp Reparations

Transcripts available in the following languages:

There's I know...there were two Americans. Soldiers I guess.  They were dressed as civilians but I think they were soldiers.  I'd sit at the bar and the, um, the bartender I mean the lady, -- the girl said, You know Jerry-san.  I really like that one guy.  You know he keeps coming in looking at me.  And It makes me nervous but you know I really like him, you know.  So I say, Oh. Then why don't you go over and tell him.  I been teaching her all this English, you know?  She says, "Yeah but I'm kind of shy.  So she says would you please tell him for me," you know?  So I went up to him.  

That was the first time I used my so-called full, long sentences.  I says, excuse me but... It took me some time but I said, "I'm American."  And he says, "Yeah, what do you want buddy?"  And I says, I'm American.  And you are American.  I want to tell you something.  And he says, "Yeah, what?"  I says, "See that girl over there?  Sachiko, or whatever her name was.  Sachiko...or Sayuko... Anyway, I said she likes, she likes you.  He says, "Oh is that right?  God so many of the guys thinks she's fabulous.  So I really like her a lot too."  Out of them, they were too, both of them were too shy to say anything, you know. So basically what I did was fix them up. my.

So Sayuko came over and they start chatting and I was translating and all that kinda stuff and, and sitting there.  And kinda made friends with them in a way, you know.  And my English starting coming back again.  But, uh, then I went back and did my classes and she, uh disappeared.  She took...after that she never came back.  And I went to the bar and she wasn't there, so I asked one of the girls, and she was new there, you know.  So she said I think, I think she went to America.

Date: June 29, 2012
Location: California, US
Interviewer: Chris Komai, John Esaki
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

Japanese language

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