Today we get a bit meta. And come full circle again. And talk about gold bowls. And traffic. And spiritual darkness.
Cognate bemusedly with the poorly titled Driving and Printing.
[singing: “Well I set out to record some stuff, but I couldn’t think of what to talk about, so I started recording anyway…”]
And that’s the story of this season. Season three of the Paul Spooner Podcast is just me talking about something until I arrive on a topic that interests me. It is a wild ride here!
I am going home a different way from work. I recently started taking this different path. So, I am in Nagoya Japan and I work about half an hour to an hour (depending on the route (which is what I’m getting to)) south of where I live. I live up by the station (the main train station). I work in this industrial area by the ocean. But there’s no public transit to anywhere near where I’m going to. And I can’t get public transit and then ride a bicycle… it’s just not feasible to get here any way other than a car.
So, I have to drive.
I’m driving under a international drivers license I got from the AAA in the US before I came here. I’ve never had to show anyone… oh, actually no I did! I sent a copy, I think they needed it for the rental car. It was all arranged by the trade company that we’re working with, so it’s all very, you know… it’s easy to do…
Oh that’s interesting. That looks like a Delta Squadron logo (EDITOR’S NOTE: I was actually thinking of the “Delta Force” computer game logo) or something. Oh that’s interesting. It’s like a triangle with a little vertical thing through it. I don’t know, maybe I’m getting it confused with something else. I was on the building on the side of the road.
So I got here and Thomas (the support guy who was here before me) drove me to work a couple times. And then he rode in the car while I drove a couple times (there was about a week of overlap there) so we had plenty of time for me to get used to the route. And there’s a GPS in the car, so he set it all up, so it’s all straightforward. It’s difficult to get lost.
But there are highways here, and they are elevated roadways that don’t have traffic lights on them. But they do have toll booths. There are tolls! So the route that Thomas was taking (which is the same route that I used for the majority of my stay so far) was one that you took a toll road, a short section, on the way out, and then you drove surface streets back. So it ended up being $8.50 I think in tolls, per day, to get out. And it took about fourty-five minutes to get here, and about an hour to get home, the long and the short of it.
So probably two weeks ago, one of the guys from Electroimpact was out doing some support work, re-calibrating one of the machines, and he informed me that there was a much faster way to get here, if I was willing to pay a higher toll. Now, Electroimpact reimburses me for all of the tolls that I pay going to and from work. It’s part of the expenses of doing this job and so it’s… you know… I’m reimbursed for that, along with gas for the car and, you know, all that sort of thing. So, for me, it doesn’t matter. And it’s $8 a day versus, now, I’m paying sixteen something, both ways. Now I’m taking the highway both ways! But it only takes about, right around a half an hour, thirty, thirty five minutes to get to and from work. So it saves me about an hour of travel every day. You know, fourty five minutes to an hour of travel every day, which is really nice! Very handy. It’s good to get home more quickly, and spend more time with my family, basically is what it boils down to.
So, for an extra, what is it, frsssss $25 in fees every day, that the company pays, that ends up being the Japanese company that’s buying the support contract pays, yeah! Totally worth it!
The disadvantage is that now I have less time in the car, sitting, thinking. And as a result, I haven’t been recording podcasts. I had a backlog that I had developed from when I was driving to and from work (my wife suggested “Hey you should do a podcast and talk about things.” and I was like “Yes! Yes I will. I will do that.” and so I recorded a bunch of stuff) and then, ahh, other things came up and I got, I was tired or whatever, you know, there was, the inspiration passes after a time, and so I had a backlog and I’d been slowly working my way through it, and I’ve just now loaded the last, the final podcast off my recorder onto my computer for (translation… not translation, transcription! For) transcription (because I transcribe all the podcasts and edit them, ahh, that’s why it takes so long for me to do this. Instead of just recording them and slapping them on the internet I take the time to edit them down and cut out all the filler words and then transcribe the whole thing which takes a while too. So, anyway) I managed to catch up.
[computer: “Traffic merging ahead, drive carefully.”]
Yes, thank you GPS.
I managed to catch up, and I was thinking, “Well, I’ll just stop whenever I get caught up. If I don’t have anything more to say, I won’t say anything.” But an interesting thing has hapened where the structure of the episodes has aligned in such a way that I recorded a bunch of stuff and edited it in groups, and I kind of arbitrarily ([whistles] wow, that guy is going fast) I arbitrarily put them into “seasons”, which were basically just groups of things that I edited at around the same time. Some of them I haven’t even transcribed yet. Like, I’m recording stuff now for season three, and season two isn’t even fully out yet. But season three, if I would have been like, “Well, I’m done. I’m caught up to myself, now I’m going to just do other things.” Season three is only three episodes long. And while they are good episodes (as are all my podcasts I’m sure), while they are interesting… I felt like three was not… I don’t know, not the correct number to stop on. Maybe it is, I don’t know, maybe I’m doing this unnecessarily. Maybe I’m recording this in vain!
And in fact, maybe I’ll never upload this. Or maybe I will and it’ll just be unedited and untranscribed or something, but [yawn] I felt that I should add something to the current season in order to fill it out and not stop on a weird half-way through-the-episode thing. I’ve begun something here, and I’d like to finish it.
Oh! Yes yes, so I’m recording, but I don’t have as much time in the car, and so I don’t have… You know, when I was driving previously I’d usually record on my way back from work. So it’s about an hour’s drive. I’d get in the car, I’d know that I’d have a solid hour ahead of me, fifty minutes to an hour, and I could prepare my mind to let the ideas go wherever they wanted, and then just pare it down later in editing.
But now I’ve got only a half hour. And a half hour is much less time than an hour (It’s roughly half [laughter] of that amount of time). And it’s also… there’s this… this… you kind of have to get into a groove when you’re doing creative work. And a half hour is not really, I feel, for me, for this…
for recording a podcast, for me, in this current situation, a half hour is not really enough time to produce insightful work. Maybe that’s what it is, I feel like it’s just not quite enough time. And so I’ve not really recorded anything, and so I’ve caught up. And, uh, so now I’m giving a try at just recording something with only a half hour of capacity (and hopefully this will reduce the length of my usually overly verbose podcasts. but if anything else it will force me to come to grips with my lack of discipline in speech.).
Ughh, now I’ve got to get over.
Another thing is that this route is faster in the sense that it is… uh, it doesn’t take as much time. But it’s also faster in the sense of it requires more concentration. Like, it’s physically I’m driving faster, because I’m on the highway almost the whole way this way, instead of being on surface streets almost the whole way… and…
Ohhhh. What is this? Is this… construction? Are we allowed to get off here? It looks like it’s still open? I hope? Yeah? Yeah. Yeah! Okay! Um… yes.
Here we go.
Alright, well, there was just a whole bunch of flashing yellow lights there I had to go around a bunch of cones and cut across the big white divider saying “hey, you should have made up your mind whether you were getting on the freeway or getting off the freeway but now it’s too late” but I got over there anyway and it’s, uh, it’s turned out okay! And look at this! I’m still alive! And still recording this podcast! (Amazing!)
So, uhh… I don’t know where I was going. I wasn’t going anywhere! See! I’m assuming I have a goal in mind at this point. But I don’t. I don’t have a goal at this point. I’m just talking.
Which is a wonderful luxury, to be able to just talk without needing to say anything recepitsin particular. Ahh… let’s see…
Update on what I’ve been up to.
I’ve been doing some commission work. I’ve got a few commission jobs. One of them is through the pipeline, it was super super fast. The guy was… had a 3d model all ready and I just had to… Oops! I’ve just come to the toll booth, I’ve got to pay the toll here.
[window rolling down]
[Japanese exchange and coins clinking]
[window rolling up]
Alright and then take my receipts somewhere where I won’t loose them, and where they won’t get out of order, so that I can properly document them later, so that I can get reimbursed, so that I don’t have to pay hundreds and hundreds of dollars in tolls. Myself. I can have the company pay for them. Because that’s what they do.
So one of them was super quick. He had a 3D model that he just needed altered a little bit and kind of cleaned up. So I did that and it was really fast turn-around. He was happy. I was happy. It was great. Great job! I wish I could have more jobs like that. Very satisfying and straightforward.
And then I’ve got a couple more. One of them is this, kind of, this long-term job. He’s trying to do some vacuum molding. And another guy wants a papercraft model. There’s a lot of papercrafts… I’m finding that a lot of people are commissioning jobs for papercraft. Pepakura is the name of the program that everyone (so far) has used. And, it’s great! I mean, I love it. It’s basically the idea of sheet metal, doing sheet metal work, only with paper instead of metal. Sheet-paper work. You print it out on a printer and then cut out the shape and fold it in the proper way, and then you get a 3d model in real life! In exactly the same shape as the 3d model in your computer. So it’s a way of fabricating digital information into real life. So, I think it’s really cool.
And in fact I did this myself!
Oh yes! Here’s something to talk about! I did this myself I’m designing a cup!
So, uh, you remember, oh, oh! Here we go! (It’s coming full circle!) So you remember (if you recall) the podcast I did about… um… oh… it was… I don’t even know what it was about. But in it I mentioned that it would be cool to have a gold bowl that I could use for everything. And so I looked into it, it was… how much would it cost to get a solid gold bowl? And of course it was prohibitively expensive. Thousands and thousands and thousands of dollars. Tens of thousands I think. But, I can get (from Shapeways, 3d printed) a bronze bowl, gold plated! For a modest fee, I think it was $800… So not that modest, but still affordable. And if I’m only getting one, and if it’s going to last me a very long time, I think I’m… I’m thinking about it.
So what I did was, I want to design this bowl, and if I’m going to get it 3D printed it’s got to be really perfect. It’s got to have all the features that I want in a bowl. Because I’ve used a lot of bowls in the past. I’ve had big bowls and small bowls. I’ve used cups. I’ve used mugs. And there are different advantages and disadvantages to all of them. One of the things I like about bowls (as opposed to cups) is that they are shallow and you can access their contents more easily. So you don’t need a ladle to get stuff out. If you want to get stuff out of a cup you really need, basically, a ladle. If you want to get stuff out of a bowl you can just use a spoon, because the angle of approach is shallower to the bottom of the bowl.
Another thing I really value is being able to maintain it in a suitable workable state, which for utensils and cookware and stuff means being able to clean it. Because you’re going to eat on it, you’ve got food on it, and then you’re going to want to be able to clean it. And I’ve found a lot of designer (hah, “designer”. Everything is designed.) I’ve found a lot of designer designs end up being designed to look cool but not be functional, and I wanted it to be extremely functional. So basically that meant no cracks, no crevaces, everything had to be radiused. Everything had to be… not necessarily smooth, but, uh, smooth enough that it wasn’t going to catch pieces of food and debris and stuff and… it had to be cleanable, and easy to, you know, to keep clean.
So, another one was it can’t be too big. Because, if I’m going to have this 3d printed then it’s going to cost more money to have it 3d printed. And also, I’ve found myself, in recent years, using smaller and smaller bowls. And in fact now I use tiny little bowls like, oh, I don’t know, icecream bowls or something? Or even mugs. For eating cereal in the morning, I’ll put it in a mug. The cereal, in particular, doesn’t get as soggy when you’re eating it from a cup, because you’re using smaller portions so you go through them more quickly. And you’ll have, maybe, instead of one big bowl of cereal you end up with, maybe, three cups of cereal. Three little, you know, serving cups. But I don’t think it takes that much more time to pour three little cups of cereal and pour milk on them. And you get the benefit of it still being crunchy, it doesn’t get soggy, and the milk doesn’t get all, you know, infiltrated with the dissolved surfactants (There we go, “dissolved surfactants”, that’s terrible) dissolved… surface materials on your cereal, stuff like that.
And then you can also eat ice cream from it. I like to eat ice cream in smaller units, for the same reason, you know, it doesn’t all melt by the time you’re done with it. You keep it in smaller portions and then you can have more of them.
And you can also monitor and change your portions more easily. Because if you have one big bowl, and you eat half of it and you’re like, “oh, I’m full.” You’ve still got a half bowl that you’ve got to deal with somehow. You’ve either got to throw it away (which I don’t like. I never throw away food, if I can help it. Even if it’s going kind of bad, I really want to not waste food. It just seems like… it seems like an insult to everyone whose labor went into making this stuff. So, I want to eat anything that I serve myself. So I don’t want to throw it away.) So I find myself eating smaller portions, and just having more smaller portions. And then if I get hungry, I can have another portion. And if I’m not hungry, I’m done! I’ll finish my small portion (it’s not going to be too much to finish, because it’s small. You know, it’s fairly small, it’s about a cup worth). And then, you know, I can always have more! There’s more food. It’s not like this is all I have. And so, for all those reasons, I’ve ended up using smaller and smaller servings. and therefore I don’t need as large containers.
And another thing I’ve found is, if I’m using a smaller container, then I don’t really need utensils. Because, if it is solid or liquid, I can kind of pour it into my mouth, instead of spooning it or using a fork. I don’t really need to have utensils if it’s a small enough portion that I can just tip it up and drink it. And of course this doesn’t work with things you would eat on a plate like steak or salad or things like that. But for more fluid things like cereal or soup or drinks of various kinds.
Oh, and that’s another thing, drinks!
So, if you’re going to have something to drink (I drink lots and lots of water. And so I’ve got a big stein and it’s just full of water, and I drink water, and that’s great. And if I’m going to drink something else, I usually drink it in very small quantities. It’s expensive to drink beverages! Beverages (non-water beverages) are expensive! So, if I’m going to have a soda or if I’m going to have some…
Oops. Woah. Backing up on the freeway here.
If I’m gonna have… or wine or alcohol or something, smaller portions! Great! I don’t want to, you know, over-indulge in this kind of thing. So, for all those things, smaller portions are much better.
Looks like hazards are the way to go here. Turn on your hazards. We are stopped on the freeway. This is unusual. I have never seen it stopped here (EDITOR’S NOTE: And in fact I never again found the traffic this badly backed up) But I guess it makes sense. This is a pretty busy area. And it’s just rained apparently, so… it’s not raining now, but it was raining. Looks like maybe there was an accident or something.
I have not seen any accidents since I got to Japan, it’s… Or maybe I’ve seen one. Yeah, there was a motorcycle accident, but only one. In four months? That’s… very small. Compared to the States anyway. Very small number of accidents.
Uh, anyway. So…
I wanted to have a bowl that was easy to clean, small, and then the other thing was, if I’m going to have it 3d printed, it may as well be the perfect shape. And for this, I was thinking, “Okay, well, what does a cup, or a bowl (and I ended up going with kind of a cup-sized-shaped-object, just because it ended up working out better for holding it in one hand, but) what does it need to do?” and I’ve kind of spoiled it, but yeah, I wanted to be able to hold it in one hand. Kind of like a goblet. You if someone has a goblet, and it’s got a long stem, they could hold it in one hand (and I’ll get to that in a minute) they could hold it in one hand and then you could drink from it. And then you could put other things in there. You could put soup or cereal or anything. I want to be able to use this for all kinds of things that I would normally use a cup or bowl for. So, you need to be able to hold it in one hand. And then I was thinking, “Okay, well, I also want to be able to pick it up and put it down easily.” And so I put some tabs on there so I can pivot, so I can grab it with my thumb and middle finger, and lift and then pivot my hand around to cup it in my hand. (“cup it” ha? see? There you go, it’s a cup) And then I was like, “Well, if I’m going to cup it, then I may as well design it so that it has grooves, so that my fingers can grasp it easily so that it doesn’t slip around in my hand. And then if I’m going to do that, there’s going to be a particular orientation that it can be in. (I made it ambidexterous so that it’s symmetrical laterally, so that it works for your right or your left hand. But either way) There can be a front and a back, and if there’s a front and a back then you can have the front have a small spout, so you can kind of pour things into your mouth, and it doesn’t dribble down your chin, and then the back can have a little groove in it, so that the bridge of your nose (where it touches the bridge of your nose) it kind of indents there so it’s, it all fits perfectly.
You may as well! If you’re going to make the perfect bowl, you may as well go through the trouble of designing the whole thing to be just right.
So, it’s got ridges on the outside. It’s the shape that’s kind of what I determined to be ideal for holding, for kind of cupping in your hand at the right angle and the right, you know, be ergonomic to use. In the process of this I designed this cup and I was all, “Okay, well, here’s this 3d model, but I kind of want to know if it’s the right size, the right shape, if it’s, if the finger locations are in the right place. I kind of tried to input my hand geometry into the computer to a certain extent, but it wasn’t perfect, so what I did was I printed out… took the model in the computer…
Well, actually, I… and this was really cool how this worked out.
I designed the cup from a convex solid. So, I basically took a cube and then I chopped off pieces of it to get this kind of planar, kind of like a crystal shape, where it’s, um, made of these flat planes. Not necessarily three point triangles (“Three point triangles” Yes… all of them are. Thank you.) Not necessarily triangles or… vertexes. But these flat planes. And so I designed it this way, and from that envelope, I designed ridges and surfaces and things to get the detail I wanted, smooth it out and stuff. But I had this original envelope. And it stayed true, almost entirely, to that shape.
And so, what I did when I wanted a prototype was I took this 3D envelope that I had, this simple face, faceted 3D env… it’s faceted! There we go, it’s a faceted convex object. So, this faceted envelope, and I UV unwrapped it, and printed it out. And then scaled it, because I didn’t know exactly how the scaling worked, so I was just like, “Forget it! I’m just going to print it out, measure the size of the thing, measure the thing on the computer, scale it, and be done. There, I’m done. I finished it.” Do one iteration, and then the second iteration is the right size.
So I did that.
I cut it all out, folded it, taped it (I used electrical tape) and it’s a really garbage prototype, but it was perfect, because then it allowed me to have this artifact, this real thing I could hold and play with, and pick up and set down, and see exactly where my hand sat on it, exactly where my fingers fell, and the shape of it was such that, because it was a faceted surface, it made this kind of, it wasn’t a 3d grid, it wasn’t vertical and horizontal lines, but it was lines that I could use as reference points and be like, “Alright well, my finger is falling right in the middle of this surface here, or this facet, or on the edge between these two facets.” and then use that to correlate that to the 3D model on the computer and get a perfect design (or what I hope is perfect).
So I developed this whole design, and I’ve got a 3d model, and it’s going to cost about (like I said) $800 to get one of these made out of bronze or brass (I forget which), and that’s a lot of money. I’d really want to get a prototype. You know, something that’s exactly the shape that I want. That’s exactly the form that I’m looking for, but without spending so much money so that I don’t waste all this money if it turns out to not be exactly what I’m looking for.
But if it is exactly what I’m looking for, I’d like it to be functional! So, if I print it out of, just plastic, it’s not going to be functional. The plastic is kind of grainy and you can’t eat or drink off of it. So what I ended up doing was I ordered it and, conveniently, ceramic is the cheapest material that you can print stuff out of. So I ordered it out of ceramic! Because it’s glazed, it can be used as a cup! You can use it just like… or a bowl or whatever.
I had to change some of the design. The internal size is smaller than the final metal version would be because the walls have to be much thicker. The walls have to be, I think for bronze, it’s 0.8mm and I think I ended up 1mm thick walls for my design for the cup. But for ceramic it has to be three or four, I think 4mm thick, so it’s much much thicker walls. But that’s fine because ceramic is cheaper! And I made sure to only alter the internal geometry. The external geometry is unchanged. So, the outside should be exactly like (or as close to “exactly” as I can hope for) the geometry I’m intending. I’ll be able to use it as a prototype. I’ll also be able to use it as an actual cup, you know, it will be functional. If it turns out that it’s good, but not good enough, or if I end up deciding that I don’t want to drop, basically, a thousand dollars on this novelty cup, I’ll still have a ceramic one that I can use.
So, that should arrive in about a month. And it’s going to my parent’s place, so they’ll have it to play with, and then I’m going to go there and be able to play with it in person.
So that papercraft turned out to be really useful because I was able to prototype the prototype of the prototype in my office basically in the space of an hour. Wheras to print it would have cost much more money, much more time, much more resources. So, papercraft! Handy skill. Very useful. I’m glad I knew about it so that I had the initiative and courage to try it, and if you ever need to make something, make it out of paper! Because you can design it in the computer and make it out of paper. And you don’t need Pepakura (Pepakura is certainly handy, but) you can just do it with Blender and print it out. UV unwrap it, make sure to cut all the edges properly. And then just UV unwrap it and print the UV unwraped surface, and you’ll be able to cut it out and put it back together. And, you know, if you’re clever, you’ll be able to cut tabs out so that the little tabs overlap and then you can glue them. (I didn’t do that, I didn’t have access to glue, and I was kind of in a hurry, so I just did it and had done with it, but)
You can get a very nice papercraft design without using Pepakura. You can just use Blender straight out of the box. Pepakura is really handy because it will automatically cut the thing up for you in useful ways and automatically add tabs and automatically scale it for you and it’ll automatically seperate it on to seperate sheets so you don’t have to do that yourself. Really really handy! I do recommend the software, I don’t know if there are alternatives… but maybe there don’t need to be. Maybe one piece of software that does paper folding and papercraft stuff is enough.
But another cool thing you can do is (if you’re into papercraft) you can basically do the same thing in sheet metal. So you can prototype sheet metal stuff in paper. If you’re doing any kind of sheet metal fabrication, I hightly recommend prototyping your stuff in paper, or cardboard, or card-stock, or whatever. Whatever weight is appropriate for the scale of the thing that you’re making. And then you can just cut it apart and flatten it out, and you’ve got a flat pattern and you can send it off to the fab guys and they, you know, draft it up and, you know…
Bob’s your uncle.
I don’t know why Bob’s your uncle, but you know, that’s who he is.
Well, see, here we go! I’ve just barely gotten into one topic, and now I’m practically home! So I’m going to shut this off, going to sing a little ditty maybe… or no no! I’ll wait until the… I’ll get to the apartment and then I’ll sing while I’m backing in because that’s the traditional way to do it. It’s the traditional Paul Spooner Podcast method. See? Now I even have traditions!
I’m become a traditionalist!
It’s Japan, man, I’m telling you. Japan. Too much tradition here. You’ve got to loosen up a little bit.
When I first got here I took a walk around (this was a few months ago when I first arrived in Nagoya, the second day, or maybe it was the first day? No, I think it was the second day.) I walked around, took a walk, took some pictures of stuff. And one of the things I took a picture of was this giant interchange where the freeway kind of curves over the surface streets, and there’s this cool little park with these… I mean, it’s not really a park, it’s an open public area with lanterns and some rocks in the ground, and it’s really cool looking! It’s just very modern. It kind of looked like Midard or something, this big old city with the giant freeways overhead.
And so I was thinking, “Man, this is so exotic and so cool.”
So now, every day as I’m driving home from work I drive by that same spot. And! I drive on the freeway that I was looking at, that I took a picture of. Because that’s the exit from the freeway. It’s that big curving section where it curves off and then I get off the freeway and turn around and drive back the way I came. The exits here are very strange. I don’t know why they do it that way but, you know… Japan. They’ve got a way that they are used to and they stick with it.
So I drive this route now, every day, past that spot. And it’s kind of cool to be like, when I got here I was like, “Woah! This is crazy!” And now it’s like, “This is… this is how I get to work. This is how I get home. Every day.” And it’s still cool looking! It’s still neat! It hasn’t become mundane yet. And I appreciate that.
Thirty-two minutes! And I started after I left! I guess this isn’t quite as quick as I’d hoped. Oh, yeah, no, but there was traffic on the freeway. Normally there isn’t traffic, I was surprised by that. But, it allowed me to finish my thought and finish talking to you guys. I’m glad for it. It’s all going to work out okay.
It’s all going to work out okay.
It turns out… God is in charge! And God is good! And God loves us! And everything works together for the good of those who love Him.
Call me, God. Call me, according to Your purpose. May things work out for good! Amen.
I feel like the Japanese have this mindset that the universe is fundamentally broken. Like, you in all those Anime where it turns out that the world is just madness? Like, underneath is just roiling seething insanity? I think they really believe that! I think it’s part of their mindset, is that the universe really is like that. Like Cuthulu. Like the H.P. Lovecraft horror? That’s their world! And it makes so much of their culture make sense! Like this kind of blindness. This willingness to accept this, “Okay, if we all just believe the same thing, maybe the nightmare will go away.” But it never does because it’s always there, bubbling underneath their consciousness.
It must be horrible!
Probably it has to do with their… ahhh, they’re a pagan culture. They’re a moden pagan culture. One of the few left. And, I mean, the demons will do that to you. They will destroy your mind. Because that is what they are. They are the bubbling insanity beneath the surface of reality. And the Christening hasn’t happened here. I mean, Christians have come, but it’s never really been… the land hasn’t been baptized yet, and so it’s still… it’s still there. There spirits are still here, like… and… yeah. I don’t know.
I’m sure that I am protected from the brunt of it. From the worst of it. But even so, it’s an interesting experience to know that there is an alternative to sanity. That can be embraced at any time. And the Japanese have gotten very good at ignoring that. But then they end up ignoring all spirits, and all things spiritual. And it kind of… it’s relegated into these very firm and solid lines of “Here’s the things that we do to appease and deal with the spirit world and that’s the end of it. Spirits are not allowed to step outside those bounds.” And even… Like Pokemon! It’s that thing where it’s like, “We’re going to enslave the spirits. We’re going to make sure that they’re doing what we say.” and the spirits have (in their mind) no will-power, no initiative, no capacity for independent action.
Which is just not true! It’s the opposite! The Japanese people themselves have no initiative and no capacity for individual action! It’s the spirits that are running everything! But, ahhh, but it’s impossible for them to see that. I mean, they are blinded, veiled, they can’t see it. And I couldn’t even see it either without God’s help. It’s one of those things that’s difficult to think about because there’s no point in thinking about it. Like, what am I going to do? But it’s a real thing. It’s a land of darkness. It’s a land still in darkness. The Light of Christ has not yet broken in here. It is arrive, but it’s not broken the place. And it will. It will. But it hasn’t yet, and that’s okay.
Someone stopped on the side of the road. So apparently just parking on the side of the road is totally okay here. Parallel parking or whatever. Almost all of the roads are double wide. Double lane both ways, so you can just stop on the side of the road. I don’t know why I brought it up except that there was a car stopped on the side of the road where I was trying to turn in to get to my parking spot which is now where I’ve arrived and now I’m going to turn on the beeper and sing you a song! Yeah! Alright!
This is Paul Spooner! It’s been the Paul Spooner Podcast. Glad to be back! Aaaaaand I hope you have a great day.
[singing along to the reverse beeper]