THE GOCHISO GOURMET: The reluctant gift giving guide

It’s about that time of year when I turn slightly green, not with envy, but more that Grinchly green hue. Why? Not because I’m a true Grinch, but because of everyone’s rush — namely the retailers — to get to Christmas as soon as possible, we’ve seemed to have bypassed Thanksgiving as an afterthought. Thanksgiving […]

THE GOCHISO GOURMET: You say vee-gan, I say vehj-an

Although I completed my undergrad studies in nutritional science way back in the ‘80s, and actually spent a year in the master’s program at the University of Hawai‘i, there was one thing I never understood. Why are people who adhere to a strict vegetarian diet referred to as vee-gans (vegan)? Since it’s a vegetable-based diet […]

Let’s Talk … About therapy

People sometimes ask, “How do I know I need therapy?” “How do I find a therapist that will truly understand me?” There are certainly long and detailed answers to these questions, but here are some condensed thoughts that may be helpful in answering these questions. Generally, when a person is feeling that life is not […]

THE HEART OF KANJI: Prayer and leaving it to Kami/Universe

This is the fourth rule for a harmonious relationship. 祈 り (ki, inori) means “prayer.” The left side represents an offering on a table for Kami, and the right side indicates an axe. After hunting animals with the axe, you can offer the animal to Kami on the altar. 任 す(nin, makasu) means “leave up.” […]

NIKKEI ANGEL ISLAND CHRONICLES: The Angel Island story of Kane Mineta, Norman Mineta’s mother

(Editor’s Note: The following article was published on the Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation’s Website, www.aiisf.org). Americans know Norman Mineta as the first Asian American in a presidential cabinet, when he was secretary of commerce under President Bill Clinton, secretary of transportation under George Bush, where he took decisive action after the attacks of 9/11, […]

THE GOCHISO GOURMET: The love apple

Since my last column highlighting the “wolf peach” or Solanum lycopersicum was more than a decade ago, it’s time to highlight the versatility of the love apple or everyday tomato. Though it goes by several aliases, tomato is derived from the Aztec tomatl or “the swelling fruit.” When you think about it, a tomato does […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: Nikkei in Mobile, Alabama

I am endlessly intrigued by the discovery of new frontiers, both geographical and thematic, in Japanese American history. One largely unexplored area is the experience of Japanese Americans in the U.S. South. We have had a few glimmers of this history in memoirs, as well as a few books on the subject, such as Thomas […]

THE GREAT UNKNOWN AND THE UNKNOWN GREAT: JA ‘godmother of redress’ was an internationally esteemed community-builder

Aiko Herzig Yoshinaga, who passed away on July 18, 2018, was not a household name, even among Japanese Americans. Yet her place in history as “godmother of Japanese American redress” seems secure. A one-woman research team, she spent years combing through the National Archives and other government document centers in search of material on the […]

RABBIT RAMBLINGS: Remembering ‘miracle worker’ Herzig Yoshinaga’s relentless hunt for truth

I am very saddened by the death of a dear friend, Aiko Herzig Yoshinaga. Of course, it wasn’t a total surprise, since she was in her 90s and had been ill, and at that age, it could happen at anytime. But losing friends and close ones is always hard. She was a wonderful and exceptional […]

FANTASTIC VOYAGE: What is Obon for a Buddhist reverend in Japan?

The word Obon in America, and the word in Japan, are two very different things. Many people in America link Obon to the street festivals and dancing that takes place in Japantowns and Buddhist temples. However, Obon in Japan is a big cultural holiday, much like Christmas without the commercialization. Many people take the day […]

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