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Saturday, Oct. 18, 2003
Your fortune through name translation
By AMY CHAVEZ
Look at any list of foreign names written in "katakana" and you'll see that people's true names -- their identities -- are hidden behind unrecognizable clods of katakana. The name "Tim," for example, becomes "chee-moo." But by looking at the possible combined meanings of katakana spellings in Japanese and English, we can read a gaijin's future. How occult! Ready to start?
Tim ("chee-moo") -- Combines the Japanese word for "blood" ("chi") and the English word "moo." The combination means that Tims have cows in their blood. You may have been a cowboy in a previous life. You also have many manly skills, which you will milk for all they're worth, make a lot of moolah and live a long, fulfilling life until the cows come home.
Thomas ("toe-mah-soo") -- You will invent a new type of Chinese cooking, possibly using toes of snakes and vinegar ("su"). You are a connoisseur in the kitchen and love to create new dishes. Thomases have the ability to take a messy situation and reshape it into a new, sizzling idea. You apply this same idea to life, coming up with more sizzling ideas than half-baked ones.
Edward ("edo-wah-doh") -- You feel naturally attracted to Japan, especially the Edo period. "Wa" is Japanese harmony, and "do" means "the way of," so you enjoy the ways of the Japanese, especially the martial arts. You enjoy Japanese history and reading books about Japan. You are comfortable with the restrictions of Japan because they are all part of the honor code you so respect in this country. You are happy living here, and when you go back to your home country, you will take a part of Japan with you by teaching Japanese culture, language or martial arts.
David ("dah-bee-doh") -- Davids live the way of the bees. You are constantly buzzing with energy and new ideas. Your new ideas often cause stress among your Japanese colleagues, but they respect your willingness to work hard. As you are diligent, your retirement will be very sweet.
Robert ("roh-bah-toe") -- Your name is a combination of fish eggs (roe) and sheep toes. This indicates your willingness to experiment with food; thus you find Japan delightfully adventurous. You have no problem eating raw fish or fish eggs. You will live a long, healthy life. However, you will never be rich.
Simon ("shy-mon") -- This name can be read as a combination of "shy" and the Japanese word for "gate" ("mon"). Simons are respectful of Japanese culture to the point of extreme politeness: They always stop at the gate before crossing the barrier, even when the gate is wide open. You feel comfortable in Japan and often get lost, forgetting completely about your native country. You are a creative type, and Japanese culture enhances your perspective of the living arts. Don't forget to go back home.
Bill ("bee-ru") -- Translates directly as "building" ("biru"). You are strong and can stand up to almost anything except a major earthquake. When you want, you sometimes lengthen your name to "biiru," meaning "beer." You can be serious and upright, while at other times you're the life of the party. This adaptability makes you well-suited to Japan, but only for short periods.
James ("Jee-eh-moo-zoo") -- You often feel misplaced in Japan, like a cow in a zoo. People admire you from afar but fear getting too close to you. You often consider going back to the herd you came from, but for now are stuck. You will only find peace with the herd. You are especially prone to working too hard, since your nickname, Jim ("jee-mu") translates directly as "office work."
Next week, women's names!
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Web site: www.amychavez.com