Tag Archives: news

nhk and tbs radio podcast apps for android

Here’s another short post about some apps I found for Android that are really helpful for getting ahold of Japanese content – and, of course, learning and practicing Japanese.

NHK news is notoriously difficult to listen to. I’m not going to argue there. But I still enjoy listening to it, and even more to TBS’s various podcasts, so I was delighted to find a very simple RSS app for my phone that lets me download and play individual NHK news broadcasts (7 am, noon, 7 pm, 10 pm, and sometimes midnight). Once in a while (about once or twice a week) you’ll get the “news journal” at midnight, which is an hour long and has breaking news such as there being garbage at Mt. Fuji. (Sorry, I couldn’t resist.)

I don’t listen to TBS podcasts as much – and there are more comedy and entertainment shows there, although you can find news as well – so I haven’t evaluated that app, but it’s by the same developer and is the same idea. By the way, you can subscribe to these same TBS podcasts on iTunes, and I’ve enjoyed doing that so far. This is just one step more toward convenience!

If you are learning Japanese or want to stay in practice – or just like listening to NHK news – please give this a try. I haven’t had it crash on me yet and it’s done its simple function very well!

Here are links to NHK Radio News and TBS Podcast Radio on Android Market. Enjoy!

wellness, environment, the body, the mind

… a Holley resident once told a reporter, at A.G. Holley, “the principal thing is to get well and get out of here.” (‘In Florida, a Lifeline to Patients with TB,’ The New York Times, June 12, 2010)

As someone born after the de-institutionalization of all kinds of patients – those suffering from both mental illnesses and what we like to call plain old illnesses – I have never stopped to consider the environment of the sanitarium. Even as someone who studies the 19th and early 20th centuries, where authors whose works I read more often than not succumbed to early death at the hands of diseases we now cure easily, it doesn’t register with me that as recently as fifty years ago, treatment could consist of anything besides a quick hospital visit and then a solitary regimen of medications taken at home, sick days meaning isolation in the private home.

When I think now about the few forms of institutionalized care that I’m familiar with, the association is purely negative: nursing homes and mental hospitals. They’re frightening, alienating environments, signaling to me the helplessness of the patient and the power of authorities over not just their well-being but over their very lives. Even I assume that I would become someone holding onto their “own” house for dear life, even after no longer being able to care for it, rather than go to someplace where I trade independence for life.

Yet reading about one of the last tuberculosis sanitariums in the United States, I was struck by the idea of community, environment, and disease. Community not in the sense of connections to family and neighbors or friends, but connections to caregivers and to a different kind of neighbor – those who share not your locale but your condition. Your way of life as influenced by what makes you suddenly abnormal. The illness.

Continue reading wellness, environment, the body, the mind