エドワード・モレノ

(Edward Moreno)

現在91歳のエド・モレノ氏は、テレビ、新聞や雑誌などの報道関係でおよそ70年のキャリアを積み、作家、編集者、翻訳者として数々の賞を受賞してきました。彼が日本文化に傾倒するようになったのは1951年で、その熱は一向に冷める気配を見せません。現在モレノ氏は、カリフォルニア、ウェストコビナ地区のイースト・サン・ガブリエル・バレー日系コミュニティセンター(East San Gabriel Valley Japanese Community Center)の月刊誌「Newsette」で、日本や日系文化、歴史についてのコラムを連載しています。モレノ氏による記事のいくつかは、東京発の雑誌、「The East」にも掲載されています。

(2012年3月 更新)

food en

New Year's Lore

It was the middle of the night, literally; I was sound asleep recovering from the hassles of the New Year. My shoulder began to shake strongly, and I woke up fearing an earthquake. I saw two enormous sticks holding something dark at the end, and pointing at my mouth, and wondered whether I was experiencing a vivid dream. Then I heard the wife’s command: “Open your mouth! It is Oshogatsu, and we forgot to eat this. We want to stick together…always.” I muttered: “Oh, darn! Does it really matter?” In came a piece of roast mochi wrapped in ...

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culture en

Kokeshi

Everybody has a favorite Japanese doll, but the luxurious kimekomi seem the most popular, with the Hakata not far behind. My passion is kokeshi, substantiated by a hoard of over four-hundred pieces. Oh, that’s nothing! In Dallas, Texas, two wonderful friends have already exceeded the TWENTY-FIVE HUNDRED count, and they just keep acquiring. One of their latest finds is a doll, tall as a seven-year old child, and twice as heavy. As if that weren’t enough, my friends are now also starting to collect gosho, those ‘cute’ baby dolls that have become real treasures of antiquity.

This is ...

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culture en

Ningyo II – The Poetry of Dolls

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Three years after it happened, I am still grieving about the demise of Ningyo Journal, an ambitious periodical that J.A.D.E. (Japanese Asian Doll Enthusiasts) published from 1993 to 2004. It cost only eighteen dollars per year, but it always packed a wallop as an instrument for learning about Japanese dolls. Its earlier issues were valiant attempts at desk-top publishing, which the editors kept constantly improving. By the time it disappeared, it was being printed on first-rate coated paper, and enriched with excellent black-and-white photos; outstanding line drawings and gorgeous color illustrations. Yet, it was ...

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culture en

Ningyo I – Divine Shape and Human Form

At Centenary Church’s annual bazaar1, I stopped at a table full of discards, and asked the saleslady how much for “THAT?”…a pair of old paper dolls inside a flimsy cardboard box. She dawdled; her eyes swept me from top to bottom, and she left to confer with her associates. While their chat was inaudible, their raised eyebrows, nods, and shoulder-shrugging were raucous. The woman came back, and trying to hide a smirk, she hinted: “A…dollar?” Quickly, I handed her the money, praying for no sudden change of her mind. “Thanks, Jiichan,” she said, which really meant ...

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food en

Ohhh, sushi!

Sushi and I made our acquaintance nearly sixty years ago on a train ride from Iwanuma to Sendai. In those days, the government wasn’t as particular as now about “sanitation,” and food vendors were allowed to course the railroad cars offering their wares without anyone batting an eye. As we left Iwanuma, a soft call filled the car:

Sun-bun, suzubentooo…Ocha…ochaaa….” A food vendor was promoting her wares. Muffled giggles followed her call.

“Hi, banchan,” a customer called and, with a smirk on his face, he added, “suzu-ben!” Because of the traditional Japanese politeness that typically infused every ...

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