24
DANCING IN THE DARK

There are certain times in life when you have to decide
which way to go: left or right; back or forth. If there was no
difference between the alternatives how do people choose their
ways?
Some people may have their own way of deciding.
People who don't will have to think a lot. If they can't
find any reasons, gambling is one way to decide.
Unreasonable reasons are something you can also think
about.
Religion.
Superstition.
Or something like, -- going left because the grass is greener
on that side.
Messages involved in the media like popular songs, news-
papers, movies or art may have the power to make a person in
a confused state decide his ways. Groups of individuals who
decide the same way will eventually consist of public opinions
and social situations.
For example, I wonder how many people have heard Bruce
Springsteen's Dancing In The Dark and were relieved from
their evil ways of living and got a steady job. I think, there
must have been that kind of people in millions all over the
world.
I quit my life as a junky in 1983, to be a hard working man
of responsibility. Maybe a social mood formed by the
Reagan's politics to rebuild a stronger America helped me to
get out of my situation, but I don't really know. A more actual
reason of why I changed my ways was because of Nissho Iwai.
The general trading corporations were the dollar-makers
of Japan. They were the engines of the economic growth of
Japan, and to do work related to them seemed to be exciting
and worth doing. I thought that I was going to be someone in
the real world again.
I was hired by Toukai Fish Fillets.
In this small company, two powers existed. One was of
Toukai Fish Fillets and the other was of Nissho Iwai. The two
powers aimed in different directions. Nissho Iwai found its
main role working for the society. Toukai Fish Fillets asked
for the profit of the Honda family.
The best thing was for the two powers to harmonize, but
the reality was, I worked for Toukai Fish Fillets and I had to
stand on my own opinion, which was likely to be close to
either side. I think I tended to stand close to Nissho Iwai,
hoping to be useful for the society.
There were times when the two powers were opposed.
Then, Mr. Honda would ask me to choose which way to go. I
always chose Nissho Iwai's side.
Anyway, what was worth to be respected more than any-
thing was the generosity of Mr. Honda, who gave me the
freedom of choosing my ways. Not to mention about good or
bad, I became what I am now, because of Mr. Honda, and
through the enormous changes, it was only him who trusted
me and helped me.
In 1984, I visited Talien, China where I taught the Chinese
how to process squid into a soy sauce pickle. This production
was an idea of Mr. Honda. Ito-Yokado Co., Ltd., a supermarket
in Japan, which is a company that purchased 7-Eleven later
on, started selling this as an item of daily food. It showed a
pretty good sales. Toukai Fish Fillets processed it in Japan at
first, but soon, people came from the health office. They told
us that the drainage of the mixture made out of mainly soy
sauce and sugar to pickle the squid was too thick and therefore
illegal. To process the squid in China was to clear these
Japanese laws. The idea wasn't nice, but it was free to drain
almost anything in China.
Making a sewage disposal facility was a fairer solution,
but it was too expensive for a small company like Toukai Fish
Fillets to afford.
The pickled squid processing in Talien worked out right,
and I went back to Japan to start selling it to customers: Ito-
Yokado and others.
In May of the same year, I met a girl who was going to be
my wife.
She was a sister of my classmate in high school. I had
seen her before but had never talked to her.
One day, when I was coming back from work, tired and in
low spirits, a girl with the same kind of expression came
walking towards me.
I just thought then that I wanted to bring a happy face back
to this girl.
I called her on the telephone later. I asked her to date me.
She gave me no answer.
l was going to go on a business trip to Canada again soon,
so I told her that I would call her when I got back.
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