Hidemi’s Rambling by Hidemi Woods

Singer, Songwriter and Author from Kyoto, Japan.

Hidemi’s Rambling No.297

Hiring specifically new graduates is a Japanese companies’ custom. If you fail to enter a university after finishing high school and spend another year to take an entrance examination again a year later, you would be one year older than other new graduates, and that is a big disadvantage to be hired at a Japanese company. When I failed all universities I applied for, my hope to work at a big company as a super career woman was crushed. The college I passed belonged to the same school as the high school I went to, and wasn’t effective to open a gate for a big company upon graduation. Come to think of it, the dream of my youth was purely based on my vanity because I don’t think I’m cut out for a nine-to-five job nor I don’t want to be a business person. I can’t even wake up in the morning to begin with. But I was young and stupid enough then, and totally at a loss for what to do for life, as I lost my hope and purpose entirely…

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Hidemi’s Rambling No.296

February is the time that most universities and colleges hold an entrance examination in Japan. When I was a senior at high school, I applied for five universities and one college. I failed all five universities. They send the result by mail and put it up on the campus too. An applicant is allotted a number and the numbers of passed applicants are put up on a big bulletin board there. For one of the universities I applied, I was fairly confident about passing after the examination, and I went to see the result at the campus alone before receiving it by mail. There were lots of numbers on the big board and I was quite sure mine was among them. But it wasn’t. I failed the exam. And there, I discovered a human reaction to totally huge despair: laugh. To my surprise, completely unaware, I laughed. Besides the applicants, around the board were students who were recruiting those who passed to their clubs and circles, and people at local businesses who were looking for part-timers. Because I laughed, they thought I passed and they flooded around me at once. They handed numerous fliers to me, saying ‘Congratulations!’ I came home by subway. At the station, I dropped to a trash bin a big bundle of fliers that were meant for only those who passed. Tears also fell. During the subway ride, I felt like my life was going in a long endless tunnel instead of a train. I remember how dark my future seemed that day…

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Hidemi’s Rambling No.295

I’ve written for several times that I’m such an avid fan of Formula One. With 36 days to go for the new season, a few teams launched their new cars and the test session has been under way. I check the result on the Internet, fascinated by the beautiful new cars. Japan experienced the Formula One boom from late 1980s to early 1990s. Now, there is not a vestige of it. While soccer and martial arts are very popular in Japan, I seldom hear people talking about Formula One these days. Since the boom was gone, a TV broadcast for the qualifying session has been confined to a short digest. The race is recorded and aired past midnight on Sundays, the slot most people don’t watch TV. It’s getting unpopular year after year and the qualifying isn’t even aired at all in the area I’m moving to. I’m afraid that commercial broadcasting stops airing Formula One altogether. It seems that soon I will end up watching it on expensive cable TV. Formula One is really costly, through and through…

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