FC: TAKEO'S SCRAPBOOK OF MEMORIES
1: Brilliance of the Moon by Lian Hearn Scrapbook by Jeremy Tran Period 7/8
2: Dear Diary, It’s been an exhausting day. First, I found out the Otori army was waiting ambush me. Luckily, I had some words with one of their soldiers. A few Otori soldiers rode up to the temple gate and wanted to speak with me. These men were sent from the lords Shoichi and Masahiro. The soldiers wanted to tell me that the Otori did not approve of my actions, and if I continued trying to claim my inheritance, then I would be faced with grave danger from the Otori. Despite their warning, however, I decided to go forward with my plans. Fortunately, I had the assistance of some farmers who attacked the Otori. These farmers used gruesome methods, such as slicing the enemy’s horses. I hope these farmers will stick with me until the end.
3: Dear Diary, I travelled to Oshima Island to meet up with my old buddy Terada Fumio. The only person who could help me get to this island was a fisherman named Ryoma. To my surprise, I discovered that he was a distance cousin of mine. It turned out that he was born to one of my uncles, but was an illegitimate child and was never claimed as a son by my uncle. I was grateful that he was still willing to help me out despite his hatred of my uncle. Anyway, I was happy to have an ally because I don’t care for my uncle, either. My uncle is my main enemy, who stands in the way of my inheritance. I was hoping to convince Fumio to join me in my quest to gain power. I also needed the support of his entire family just in case I ever found myself involved in heated battle while defending my inheritance. I was glad when Fumio and his family agreed to support me. Since they are pirates, they have knowledge of Western technology. Already, they have introduced me to telescope-like instruments to help scope out enemy territory. I feel optimistic about my quest for my inheritance, with Fumio on my side.
4: Dear Diary, Terrible news: I recently received information that my wife had been abducted by Fujiwara. Fujiwara is a nobleman who had been exiled from the capital. She had been trying to save her sisters, who had been abducted by Fujiwara earlier. I found only because Haruki’s nephew Hiroshi escaped from Fujiwara and found me. The worst part is that Fujiwara declared my marriage to Kaede to be illegal, and then forced my wife to marry him! Dear Diary, I almost died today. A man named Kotaro snuck into my house to kill me; he was the same man who assassinated my father all those years ago. Kotaro came at me with a poisoned blade and tried to cut me. However, I was able to fight back with the help of a companion, Kenji. Kenji is a village man who offered to serve in my army. My injuries were minor: I lost two fingers and was in delirium because of the poison that Kotaro had put on his knife.
5: Postcard from Takeo to Kaede My dear wife, it has been many months since I have been away from you. Although I miss you greatly, I am glad you are not here with me, putting your life at risk. I am having mixed feelings about my quest to claim my inheritance. Even though I know violence is the only way to ensure my destiny, I was brought up to believe that is wrong to kill another human being. It is difficult to find the balance between compassion and ruthlessness. However, my love for you is what allows me to get through the day. You are the Ying to Yang.
6: New York Review of Books Interview with Author Lian Hearn, On his book Brilliance of the Moon Question: How does your background influence your writing? Answer: Although I was born in England, I moved to Australia, which brought me closer to Japan. Japan and Australia are both in the same time zones, but different hemispheres. There many different contradictory elements from living in Australia. I find that these contradictions helped influence me to become a writer interested in Japanese culture. Question: What made you decide to become a writer? Answer: I have always read books and made up stories to keep myself company. The enjoyment I get from books is the same enjoyment I want my readers to feel. That is my I tell stories through books. Question: How did you become familiar with Japanese culture? Answer: I spent time learning how to read and speak Japanese. In 1999, I spent three months in the Western Honshu area of Japan. This area is the setting of my novels. I went to many museums and temples, and read many Japanese books, and watched several Japanese movies.
7: Encyclopedia Article on Japan’s Western Honshu, Setting of Brilliance of the Moon. Western Japan is known in Japanese as Chugoku, which literally translates as "middle lands" in kanji characters. Although most of us would consider this part of Japan as the southern or southwestern part, the Japanese regard it as western Japan. The region has, over time, acted as a major inroad for much of Japan's distinct Chinese and Korean influence.
8: Dear Abby, My name Takeo Otori and I am writing you for advice on my relationship with my wife. I really love my wife. But we have major problems. For example, whenever I go into battle, she wants to fight alongside me. Under normal conditions, I would allow any woman to join my army; however, for the safety of my wife, I forbid her from joining me. Her feeling is that she is just as brave and talented as any of my other soldiers, and that she deserves to be given a place beside them. She cannot understand why I won’t let her fight, and she thinks I am acting unfairly. What should I do? If I let her fight, I am afraid she will die, and it will be my fault. But if I keep her out of my army, then she will resent me greatly.
9: Dear Takeo, I can understand the frustration that both you and your wife are experiencing. Of course, you love and want to protect your wife. But that doesn’t mean you can stop her from being who she is. If she wants to be a soldier, then you should let her. Many events in life can kill a person; her participation in your army will not necessarily result in her demise. More importantly, in a marriage it is important to honor each other. That means, you have to respect who she is and what she wants, even if it’s something that doesn’t sit right with you. You are not her father or caretaker; you are her husband, and as such, you should let her be the person she truly is, and love her in spite of that.
10: Horoscope for Takeo: Your lands will be stretched from sea to sea, but peace comes in the price of bloodshed. Five battles will buy you peace: four to win, one to lose. The one who will kill you is your son. Your wife will claim her inheritance with your help, by killing your enemy. This enemy is the same man who helped orchestrate your illegitimate father’s death. You will demonstrate great courage, resilience, and strength in attempting to claim your inheritance.
11: Takeo Otori’s report card: Overall Grade: A- Subject: Leadership -A+. Takeo has demonstrated extraordinary decision-making powers that have resulted in success. His strategies are carefully plotted, and ensure that a relatively small number of battles will be fought and won, in order to preserve the lives of his soldiers. Subject: Fighting - A+. When it comes to using a sword, Takeo is very skillful and clever in attacking his enemies and defending himself. In addition to excellent swordsmanship, Takeo can even kill someone without laying a single finger on that person. It appears he has magical fighting powers that allow him to be a superior soldier. Subject: Being a good husband - B. Although Takeo has great love for his wife, he does not always show it. For example, he does not spend much time at home with her since he is always fighting a battle in another town. Also, he often irritates her by refusing to let her fight. He also keeps secrets from her, such as the secret that he had fathered a son with another woman of the tribe.
12: A picture of me on my horse Shun | This is the land that I inherited | This is the temple at Terayama | This is a sacred bird called the Houou that is the crest of the Otori
13: "The history of tempura goes back about 400 years, to the time when Portuguese missionaries arrived in Japan. The Portuguese word "tempuras" means Ember Days, when meat was not eaten. It has been plausibly suggested that on these days the missionaries cooked fish and vegetables in the manner most palatable to them, by frying in batter, and that the Japanese adopted the technique and the name from them. Since then tempura has come to be regarded as on of the most important Japanese dishes..." ---The Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson [Oxford University Press:Oxford] 1999 (p. 788-9)
14: Kaede's Recipe for Tempura There are three main parts to the recipe: Koromo (Batter), Tentsuyu (Tempura Dip) and Shrimp 1) Koromo: 1a) Mix one cup of very cold water with one egg 1b) Sprinkle in one cup of flour and whisk quickly 1c) Do not overbeat mixture or else the tempura will be oily 2) Tentsuyu 2a) Boil one cup of water for at least three minutes 2b) Turn off the heat and add one tablespoon of Daikon radish 2c) Stir in two tablespoons of sugar, two tablespoons of sake, one quarter cup of soy sauce, and a pinch of grated ginger root 3) Shrimp 3a) Peel shrimp and leave it whole 3b) Dip shrimp in the batter and fry two at a time
15: THE END OF TAKEO'S SCRAPBOOK