Definition: Benjo Meshi, Ohitorisama, Solo Date

Some Japanese terms and concepts today for Valentine’s Day, in case you’re not celebrating with a partner, or perhaps know someone who isn’t.

May I also remind you that there has been more people not in a relationship than there are in the world for a few years now. Single is actually the norm!

Had to break one tweet into several posts so as not to overload with terms in one post. I like to keep it at 3 terms max per post.


Benjo Meshi

Japanese for “toilet lunch”, which is the practice of eating lunch alone in a toilet to avoid being seen without a friend



Japanese for “party of one” that is a new movement where people boldly choose to do things alone regardless of others’ opinion


Solo Date

Date with yourself, or going out on your own by choice, that is a movement now (also look up “self-partnered” as a single status from Emma Watson)


The Music of Lubomyr Melnyk

Through 2016, I’ve been slowly discovering the music of Lubomyr Melnyk on Accuradio, my favourite online radio source (free), via their solo piano channels. Melnyk is a German born Canadian composer of Ukrainian origin who plays “continuous music” on solo piano (mostly). A link to the term in the previous sentence will explain what it is to you technically, by Melnyk himself, as I’m not nearly qualified enough as a musician to explain it. All I know is I LOVE it! It reminds me of Phillip Glass’ music (Glassworks), though I don’t know if the two were that much similar. They just sound similar to me, and similarly great!

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Congratulations to Japanese Women for Winning Soccer World Cup Finals 2011

Congratulations to the Japanese women soccer team for winning the 2011 FIFA World Cup in soccer!

They fought courageously, coming back from a goal down twice reasonably late in the game to tie it 2-2 in extra time. Then they won it decisively on in penalty kicks, not needing to finish the set to win it 3-1, becoming the first Asian soccer World Cup champions. Absolutely true to their underdog label to the very end!

The US may have seemed to have dominated play, with 27 shots to a dozen or so by the Japanese. However, it was all an illusion. The Japanese had more shots on goal than the US, at 6-5. The Japanese also had the ball 53% of the time.

The US was the flashier team, but the Japanese was the more consistent team.

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Guitar and Ukulele Tabs for Goin’ Up Yonder (Walter Hawkins)

It’s hard to tab gospel music, if you know what gospel music can be like to perform with all its passionate fervour, improvisation and such. This isn’t meant as a tab as much as a starting guide for you to create your own version of this popular gospel. The version below is a relatively quiet version from which I created the guitar and ukulele tabs found below that.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Walter Hawkins

Going Up Yonder, Walter Hawkins Guitar Tabs Letter Sized PDF

Going Up Yonder, Walter Hawkins Guitar Tabs Tabloid Sized PDF

Going Up Yonder, Walter Hawkins Ukulele Tabs Letter Sized PDF

Going Up Yonder, Walter Hawkins Ukulele Tabs Tabloid Sized PDF

If the letter size tabs (8.5″ x 11″) are too small for your eyes, you can either enlarge to tabloid size (11″ x 17″) using an automatic enlarge feature on many photocopiers, or download the tabloid sized versions for printing. The tabloid size tabs can be inserted into a typical letter sized binder on the 11″ size, and folded almost in half to fit. You just open each tab to use it.

Please click here for guitar and ukulele tabs and chords to other songs on this blog.

I picked the choral version above to tab because it was the most “practical” one to tab. You can document something reasonably similar to that version, aside from all the harmony parts you couldn’t sing simultaneously if you were to do this solo. However, if you’re adventurous, you can add your own touches to this song and make it as different from the version above as the version below… all 10 minutes of it! It is soloed by Tramaine Hawkins.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

It’s generally the same style so you should be able to use pretty much the same chords if you sing it using the notes in the tab PDFs. However, it has a complete different swing and swagger. You could add a reasonably facsimile with your singing and some funky strumming if you give it a try.


Flesch-Kincaid Grade Reading Level: 9.0

An Étude in is a music composition webware. It allows you to compose sheet music online in their website, play it and share it as a follow the music style video. Copying and pasting code is about as complicated as it gets for social bookmark style sharing, but the entire package is brilliant. This despite a few shortcomings still present in Beta 3 version.

Isn’t the free world wide web great these days? Everything is going on-line via webware, and “software is so passé” according to CNET and I can’t say I disagree. Their blog has like 10 entries a day on webware for crying out loud! Soon, we’ll only need to get the same scripts on our electronic devices (far more than just computers) and the browser will serve as the means for everything. We will only need the scripts on our electronic devices for when we don’t have a reliable connection and might lose data.

The latest webware I happened upon is sheet music composition software at I learned about it from Wesley Fok in his awesome weekly columns called Apps We Love in the Globe & Mail (Canadian paper). Being a bit of an amateur musician, who happened to have composed something like 15 years ago, I not only got to try the site, but I had personal vested interest.

I found the site to be fairly good, though not yet at the quality of expensive software like Finale. You can still do quite a lot with this software. I’m sure there are many things people wish it had, and it will with progressive versions, but this is great for now. The only thing I found on this first go that was disappointing was I could not change tempo in the middle of a piece. They’ll get that sorted out soon enough as it’s just timing and is a digital fix.

But more than just music composition, you can share the file and have multiple people work on it. Then you can share it on blogs and such. They give you some codes and you just throw it in somewhere. It doesn’t quite work for every platform yet. I can’t embed it in my post, for example. However, I can collect it with my VodPod account and widget to the right. I just put those codes from into the collector, it gives me a page to view it, and I can link the URL to the text like here.

The computer “performance” is less than stellar without the ability for me to indicate tempo changes that were all over this piece. It loses a lot of its life without the appropriate tempo changes. However, I’ll take it just to be able to share it. When the better beta versions come out, I will update it.

As for my étude, it was something I composed to get around stupid and horrible sounding exercises. I was teaching myself piano, cowboy style, you see. Jump in and shoot. Ask questions later. I had no piano training, but I was teaching myself to play the first movement of Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata (video below) because there were many nights I needed to play it for therapy in the moonlight coming through my bedroom window.

Wow! That video link has over 6.5 million views!!! Talk about timeless! Beethoven gone majorly viral!

Etude in C, Op. 1 No. 1, by Minh Tan (original manuscript)

Etude in C, Op. 1 No. 1, by Minh Tan (original manuscript)

Anyway, there were some things about piano playing in that Sonata I was really being challenged by so to get around it, I composed aptly named étude style pieces. I only ever got around to completing one, but I have held on to it like a Beethoven original manuscript. Lo and behold, 15 years later, serendipity, synchronicity and karma had given it a better purpose and meaning in my life. I had it to try and share with the world. It did get a public viewing I never allowed it after all! Life really kicks you know what when you can have skeletons of this sort in your closet!

It’s instances like this, actually, which have happened frequently in my short life thus far that led me to write my six-word memoir as being

Everything done will mean more later


Flesch-Kincaid Grade Reading Level: 7.0