Fujisawa on June 20 and 29, 2017

Potential bottlenecks or procedural traps (see On the Possibility of Academic Pedagogy):

1) Two pieces of the following type of USB memory were bought from Bic Camera in Fujisawa, Kanagawa prefecture, Japan on June 20, 2017.

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One of them appeared to be fairly slow but otherwise function normally. The other one appeared to be unusable: the triangle-shaped light turned on a few times in the beginning after connecting the device to a computer but never flashed as in the other one, never turned on thereafter and the computer never appeared to recognize the USB device.

When several products are shown in the same receipt and only one of them is returned, Bic Camera keeps the original receipt for the returned product and issues a new receipt for all the remaining products with the date when one of the products is returned. In this case two USB memories and 500 sheets of printing paper were bought on June 20, 2017, one USB memory returned on June 29, 2017 and a new receipt issued for one USB memory and 500 sheets of printing paper dated June 29, 2017. Neither the date (June 29, 2017) nor the transaction number (6512) of the new receipt match the date (June 20, 2017) and transaction number (7573) in the warranty for the remaining USB memory. Bic Camera does not automatically issue a new warranty with the same date as in the new receipt, but the customer has to point out the issue and ask for a new warranty – apparently without a transaction number. If the customer does not ask for a new warranty, there may well be no valid warranty or proof of buying the remaining USB memory on a specific date at Bic Camera in Fujisawa. Even if the customer asks for a new warranty, there might no longer be any other proof of buying a USB memory from Bic Camera in Fujisawa and connecting it to a computer which might have become very slow or occasionally completely unusable before the date of the new receipt except a picture which the customer might have taken of the old receipt.

The old receipt dated June 20, 2017

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The old warranty for one USB memory dated June 20, 2017

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The new receipt dated June 29, 2017

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The new warranty for one USB memory dated June 29, 2017

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2) Unless the customer uses his/her passbook at least once within a certain period of time – apparently approximately 6 months – the next time the customer uses his/her passbook the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ prints lump sum figures for some or all of the period which are supposed to correspond to the total amount of deposits and withdrawals made during some or all of the period during which the passbook was not used. Also the alleged number of both deposits and withdrawals during some or all of the period are printed in the passbook, but not itemized amounts or dates on which any specific transactions allegedly occurred. Even in the case of clearly and potentially deliberately inaccurate figures, the customer has to physically visit a Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ branch and request an itemized account statement to be sent by post. This potential bottleneck or procedural trap might be aimed primarily at foreigners and/or locals who do not frequently visit areas where the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ has branches – mainly Greater Tokyo. It may not be technically possible to update the passbook while withdrawing cash at, for instance, convenience stores outside of Greater Tokyo or to arrive at the kind of figures for the total number and monetary amount of withdrawals stated in the passbook shown in the following picture while using the account exclusively through ATMs located in convenience stores.

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Some stores in Fujisawa appeared to be relatively well endowed with Fuji-themed merchandise on June 29, 2017. Don Quijote, for instance, was offering Mount Fuji natural mineral water by Asahi (“morning sun” or “rising sun”) and different types of spaghetti or pasta imported by a trading company or companies with the word Fuji in the name.

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On July 2, 2017 14-year old Sota Fujii (藤井聡太) lost for the first time in shogi or Japanese chess after setting the all-time record for consecutive wins (“sota” means “war” in Finnish, the first character in Fujii is the same as in Fujisawa rather than Mount Fuji and the meaning of the second character is “well”. The author of this blog is not demanding, for instance, “public shame” – one potential reading of the combination of the radicals in one of the remaining characters in the name – for the perpetrators or the public who should have upheld the law and prevented the perpetrators from usurping “state” power in the first place: non-judicial executions [see Beyond Legality], for instance, may be quite sufficient as the most feasible practical approximations to the appropriate penalties or remedies.) Approximately at the same time and shortly after drinking some of the Mount Fuji natural mineral water I had for the first time in several months significantly less severe but nonetheless clear symptoms similar to those I had in early February 2017 and June-July 2016 in Japan. It is thus quite possible that “bottlenecks” might be becoming more literal in Japan in case they might not have been so all along. (In case anyone wonders what might have been broadcasted on Japanese TV around that time, some foreigners failed to see the morning sun or rising sun from the top of Mount Fuji due to cloudy weather, Fukui prefecture – the name consisting of the characters for “blessing” and “well” – was featured and a group pitched from a hole in the ice in the city where I was born in Finland for funding to perform live music on Mount Everest).

Incidentally, on my Helsinki-Narita flight Finnair appeared to offer only Japanese or San Benedetto branded natural mineral water in the larger, non-personally distributed bottles.

One of my former Japanese teachers – namesake of Japan’s current Defense Minister – taught the class almost 20 years ago a Japanese expression that no other teacher in any other language might have taught me but which might subsequently have turned out to be remarkably useful: “shinde kudasai” or “please die”. I keep hearing less politely stated variants of the expression relatively often. If self-defense allegedly justifies violations of relatively explicitly stated constitutional law, might it be un-Japanese or culturally inconsiderate to pretend that any actual or alleged law or constitution might prevent or hinder legitimate personal self-defense whenever appropriate based on one’s own opinion – not to mention when, say, being under ongoing attack by individuals, institutions and/or a system to whom or which child torture, for instance, might be a routine practice?

My first name means “terrorism” in Japanese – something which became clear relatively soon after arriving in Japan for the first time on what might have been September 10, 2001. While individuals whose name might be similar to, for instance, the location of a major nuclear disaster might certainly not be expected to be discriminated against in recruitment decisions, might there actually in some cases, areas or occupations be positive discrimination in favor of certain types of names connected to overt or covert warfare, agendas, targeting campaigns, personal histories of targeted individuals or perhaps simply Satanist practices? If so, it would still hardly be un-Christian to do research on terrorism – including “state” terrorism – in any case and perhaps particularly when taking into account the possibility that substantively such research might be potentially less trivial and/or more relevant and/or accurate compared to the output from some of the alleged or self-declared incumbents in the field and thus deserve to be funded even without any cartelist, cultist or conspiratorial twists.