WAFTF Staff FAQ (Kiwi Musume)


Welcome to Kiwi Musume's FAQ! Many of the questions were written by me (Oasis Heart3), but you can also submit questions (or fix any mistakes!). All you have to do is email me.

Below is a list of all the questions available. You can click on the questions to jump around, or manually scroll down the page. =)

Enjoy your visit, and I hope I can answer your question[s]!!

Available Sections:
Lyrics - WAFTF Staff - About the Site

Do As Infinity
Kazuyoshi Saito
Tomiko Van
Ryo Owatari
Missile Innovation
pee-ka-boo
Dai Nagao (D.A.I.)
Amasia Landscape
SE7EN
I-lulu
moumoon

Available Questions (Kiwi Musume, main translator; owner of a JPop Lyric Site):
How'd you create your username?
What's your real name?
What's your current job/dream job?
What made you create your website?
Who are some of your favorite Japanese musicians?
What are some of your likes and dislikes?


  • How'd you create your username?
  • I wanted a name for my site that said something about me and also had something Japanese in it. I had originally thought about calling it "Juliechan's Jpop Page" or something, but Megchan and Cori, my friends and two of my forerunners, had already done that with their websites, so it felt a bit unoriginal.

    So I started thinking about the -Musume groups. Morning Musume were the first Jpop artist I ever listened to, and there were also spin-off groups called Coconuts Musume (so called because the members were all from Hawaii) and Country Musume, who had a Hokkaido country girl gimmick going. So since I'm from NZ I decided to call myself Kiwi Musume. And the rest is history!

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  • What's your real name?
  • Julie.

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  • What's your current job/dream job?
  • I'm currently working as an assistant English teacher in a small town in Saga, Japan. At the time of writing this I've got 3 months left, and on the one hand I'm excited that I'm about to get one step closer to doing what I really want to do (see below) but on the other hand, how the hell did the time pass so quickly?!

    My dream job - or "final destination" as I tend to think of it, as I know I'm going to get there and I know enough to know that it's not perfect - is to be a freelance translator. My plan thus far is:

    • August 2009: Go home. I was going to say bring chip bag balloon and jar of Ueto Aya's tears* (or at least some of this) to stop myself feeling crappy about leaving, but Japan's weather is doing the job for me. I may be leaving the place where I've lived for 3 years and everyone in it, but I get to escape the God-awful heat!
    • *NOTE: If you don't know what I'm referring to, you need to watch Borat and Attention Please. Especially Borat.

    • Rest of 2009: Apply for Working Holiday Visa in Japan. Support self in meantime by doing freelance work from the two companies I'm signed up with, look for work with other companies, and make up the rest by doing casual retail work. (I also have a lot of money saved up, but I want to try not to use too much of that.)
    • Beginning of 2010: Go to Japan on Working Holiday Visa (I could probably go earlier than that, but Christmas away from home sucks.) Teach English part time in or near Tokyo and spend the rest of the time going to translation industry networking events and researching and visiting companies.
    • Christmas 2010: Go home. By then I should have enough companies interested in me to support myself solely by translating. Work in NZ as a freelance translator for around 6 months, or until my monthly income is $3000 or more.
    • Mid-2011 (or when my monthly income reaches the required amount): Apply for regular visa.
    • Beginning of 2012(?): Go to Japan. Probably live in a small town near Tokyo so I have all the good things about small town life but also easy access to Tokyo. Support myself freelancing, but probably also work part time, or maybe volunteer, teaching English at kindergartens or primary schools, because I enjoyed that and because one of the major drawbacks of translating from home is the isolation.

           I'm not someone who constantly needs people around me, but I've realised that I do need the incidental contact that comes with having coworkers (and in this case students), even if it's just a few hours a week. (And I don't think translating in-house is the answer - the commute, wearing a suit every day, etc - but you never know what will happen.)

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  • What made you create your website?
  • In 2001-2003 when I first got into Jpop, I didn't understand enough Japanese to know what all the lyrics meant, so I looked them up online but was only able to find translations for some of them, which bugged me. So I decided that once I knew enough Japanese I'd translate them myself and fill in the gaps.

    So in late 2004, when I finished my Japanese degree, I started submitting translations to Megchan's site, then in 2005 I decided to create my own website, which I opened on October 26, 2005. I spent all my free time working on it in 2005 and 2006 (it was a godsend during the lengthy application process for JET. If I hadn't had that to take my mind off the wait, I think I would have gone insane) but then in 2007 life started to get in the way.

    I went on hiatus during the second half of 2007 to focus on studying for Level 1 of the JLPT but even once I was done with that I still had trouble keeping up with requests, and called it quits. Now I just translate stuff I like when I have time, and I've also decided that I will go back to taking requests once I finish JET in August, but for a fee.

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  • Who are some of your favorite Japanese musicians?
  • I actually have no consistent favourites now. When I first got into JPop my favourites were Morning Musume, Hamasaki Ayumi, Shimatani Hitomi, BoA, Younha, Ooguro Maki and Lindberg, but now there is so much stuff I've loved by so many different artists, and no artist springs to mind who consistently produces stuff that I love (including the ones who were my favourites at first).

    So instead I'll list some (or...a lot) of my all-time favourite songs and albums (other than pretty much everything by the aforementioned artists up to about 2005).

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  • What are some of your likes and dislikes?
    • LIKES:
    • America's Next Top Model (I have managed to get at least two of my friends addicted, maybe even three)
    • JDramas (especially those relating to the fashion or airline industries, and I'll usually give any school dramas a go unless they annoy me too much)
    • JPop (naturally)
    • Translating (it's the only job I will stay up until 3am, get up at 4am or go to Tokyo and back in less than 24 hours for.)
    • The Indian restaurant in Saga City
    • NZ pizza (especially meat lovers with barbecue sauce. WANT.)
    • Flying (I have flown probably 15-20 times now and I still turn into a squeeing fangirl every. Single. Time.)
    • Sleeping (I would like to do more of it.)
    • Snark blogs and communities (especially 1bruce1, bsc_snark, Television Without Pity and fourfour. I love them so.)
    • IThinkImLost (I'm not normally one for continuing to go to forums for members of a particular industry after I leave that industry, but ITIL is so damn funny that I'll probably be coming back long after I finish JET.)

    • DISLIKES:

    • Ego Sensei's - you know the type. The ones who brag that they're "fluent" in Japanese despite fucking up stuff I learned in my first year of Japanese class. I call them Ego Senseis after the first one I ever saw, in 2005. She had a gang of groupies who called her "sensei", which made me want to slam my head repeatedly against a hard surface, so I referred to her as "Ego Sensei" as a play on that. Then when I discovered that there were MORE people like her, I started using the term to refer to that kind of person in general.
    • The #$%@#&ing  recession
    • Japanese summers - they are hell on earth.
    • Roaches - another reason I hate summer in Japan; they are evil.
    • Micromanaging - if there is one thing that drives me up the wall it's bosses harassing you over minute stuff. One of the defining moments that made me decide against working in eikaiwa after JET was coming across a story about someone whose boss said that he was not allowed to study Japanese on the premises, even on his breaks. And this was prefaced by "Everyone who's worked there has a story about crazy shit like that." Yeah...no.

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