26 Apr 2018

A gingerbread which deviated from the norm

Gingerbread is cut out from a man-shaped cutter. They all look the same, but please look carefully, there are differences, some wear a bow tie and some wear a skirt. If you were a gingerbread, what would you be? If I were a gingerbread, I think I'm a gingerbread which deviated from the norm.

I was a kid that loved brick toys, mechanical things and handicrafts. My favorite plaything was paper crafts, especially, making tiny paper boxes. I was obsessed with making boxes and my bookshelf was filled with tiny boxes and it looked like as if dwarfs prepared for gifts hard for Christmas that was coming soon.

As I wrote in the blog on 26th of February, "Cannot stop watching mechanical linkages", watching machines' moving was one of my amusements as well. Every time I went out, I stopped in front of a Japanese traditional sweets shop window and watched the machine working until my mother became bored. For my mother, I did not apply to the definition of girls whom my mother thought of.

Looking back at other girls in my childhood, most of them loved to collect pretty things like hair ornaments with ribbons, Hello Kitty's stationery or something coloured pink and they preferred to play with these pretty things and enjoyed talking, and they were talkative. I liked pretty things too, but those things were not attractive enough to grab my heart.

I remember when I was seven or eight years old, a woman gave me a colouring book. A boy was given a book that had printed patterns of a car which could be cut and assembled as a three-dimensional car. I was disappointed because I wanted the book that the boy was given. I wondered why adults assumed what I liked? I was a girl who was tired of being labeled as a stereotype girl.

As I grew up, the difference between most girls and me were getting more obvious. When I was a high school student, my classmates were crazy about singers and movie stars, and me, I was like still an elementary school boy, interested in insects and animals. For instance, while they went to a movie theater with little fancy clothes and gazed at a movie star with moony eyes, I worn an ordinary T-shirt, and watched ants curiously in the backyard. If my neighbors saw me watching ants on the ground, maybe I should have been thought of as a weird person because they couldn't see ants, but me.

I wondered if I was an eccentric?
One day, when I thought about such a thing, I found a book of Richard Feynman at the local library. While continuing to read his book "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman", I found a description that he was watching ants, unexpectedly. Actually, he analyzed the behavior of ants, and I just watched ants, so it's not exactly the same, but I still had a sense of closeness with him. It's not only me!

Even after becoming a full working adult, I was interested in plankton, puzzles, handicrafts and 3D graphics. As you can guess, friends around me, nobody was interested in these things and I was a bit lonely. Rarely, did I pay attention to fashion and accessories, yet still I didn't know famous brand names.
One day, I saw a nice bag with a logo mark. I asked my colleague "Is again b a brand name?" She suddenly laughed and said, "It's not again b, it's agnès b!"
Well, if you have been believing that the logo was "again b" you must be on my team.

It may be a little harsh expression, but since I was small, I've been having a feeling that I'm like a gingerbread which deviated from the norm. When I was young, I took its meaning negatively and gradually I changed the idea. Having differences from others can be an advantage.
Gingerbread is not all the same and I believe the differences make this world attractive and tasty.

photo credit: Cousin Dirk Gingerbread Men via photopin (license)
photo credit: vpickering Gingerbread men via photopin (license)

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