This Is My Life’s Path
This Is My Life’s PathBy Mr. Y.K, Welfare Officer, Kanagawa, Japan
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away… No, a year ago this summer, in a corner of Tokyo… it happened. I, who had been in the position of “Padawan,” or lifetime-disciple, had my first student. And now something even more amazing is about to happen.
First, let me give you a brief review of my recent experiences. “Cool!” “I want to do this!” “Awesome!” “Rappers are so polite and respectful!” I started rapping in the spring of 2018 because I found it exciting and I followed my impulse.
It all started when I learned that someone I had seen on a TV show was opening a rap school. I rushed to enroll. I’d always loved to listen to singing and had a desire to sing, but I’d never sung in public. I had no sense of rhythm. In fact, I had bitter memories of failing at the drums when I first started playing them long ago, and I’d given up on music.
But I started, and you know how it was? Well, it was impossible! Lol! After every lesson, I asked my classmates lots of questions. I didn’t know what to do, and I kicked up a fuss.
But it was fun! I was hooked. Even though I sucked at it, I couldn’t stop feeling excited.
These wonderful days came to an end with graduation. But afterwards I followed my teacher around persistently (lol) and at some point, we started rapping together on the street.
From there, I made a connection with a music agency, and began a project with the outlandish idea of rapping while working at a ryokan in Fukushima Prefecture with my autobiography and CDs in hand. This project was out of the ordinary. It was my first time living alone, and there was a lot going on—it’s a long story, so I won’t go into it here. But as a result, I ended up returning to Kanagawa Prefecture earlier than planned.
At the time, the words “failure” weighed heavily on me, and I thought I couldn’t be a rapper anymore. “It’s over…” Then I received a phone call from my teacher.
“You gotta be kidding me! You said you wanted to repay me! Was it just words? You’re gonna be a famous rapper, that’s how you repay me, got it? I’ll set you up with a gig, so keep your schedule open!” And so it was that in 2019, instead of quitting, I restarted my career as a rapper.
I was still active for a little while after that, but because of COVID, I couldn’t rap on the street anymore, and I didn’t have many opportunities to rap in front of people.
In early spring 2021, I thought to myself, “This is the end, I can’t keep doing this high school stuff forever. I’m gonna be 29, lol.”
All right. This finally brings me back to the beginning of the story. In the summer of 2021, a childhood friend of mine was holding an exhibition of artwork unrelated to rap music, and I was there to help. While I was sitting on a chair resting, a woman who looked exactly like Yoda of the Jedi High Council—no no no, I mean the actress Sayuri Yoshinaga, who was sitting behind me, said, “Is this your work?
“No. I’m kind of like a rapper!” I said. “I’m just helping out my friend today!”
“What? Do you rap? I’m interested! I want to rap too!” So I said, “Oh? Okay! I’ll teach you!” And so it started.
Back when I took my rap class, I’d kept a notebook of all the lessons so that I’d be able to teach someday. And since I wasn’t a good learner, I kept all the advice I’d received in my phone’s notepad.
I was thrilled. “My time has come!” The first lesson was just a try-out. But then she requested more lessons the next week. I thought it was fun that my first disciple was a 73-year-old woman. I listened to everything she had to say.
She’d left her ex-husband over 40 years ago due to domestic violence and raised her daughter and son as a single mother working as a reviewer. Her ex didn’t even give her child support. So she wanted to rap about the experience.
She was a workaholic, but her job had been cut drastically because of COVID. She felt burnt out and didn’t know what to do.
She’s had no time for herself, having until now devoted herself solely to raising her children. Now she finally had time for herself.
Her face shone brightly as she said with joy, “I finally have time and money for myself!”
She was about the same age as my grandmother, who’d passed away, so I felt like she was my grandmother, or rather that I was seeing the other side of my grandmother. And there we were doing things together that I’d never done with my grandmother, like going out to eat.
I asked her if she had any aspirations or dreams of what she wanted to be as a rapper.
She replied, “You know what? I want to be on Tetsuko’s Room! I want to meet Tetsuko-san in person!” she said, referring to the long-running TV show and its popular host.
“And also, since I’ve been working as a reviewer, I want to be the one who publishes a book myself! And of course, I want to make rap music!”
“That sounds great! Let’s make it all happen! Let’s work on it seriously. I’m sure you can do it.” And so the lesson continued with the same conversation that had taken place quite a few times before.
By the way, her stage name is “KOREI(aged) = Koru rei(icy spirit) = Cole Ray.” Cole Ray said, “It’s amazing that you try to teach an old lady like me. You teach well. Also, you’re a good-looking man, so I approached you.” Hahahahahha!
But it’s even more amazing that Cole Ray decided to start rapping at the age of 73. She was already too much of a character when she started. Lol!
Around March of this year, she said to me, “I think if I send this story to a magazine, it will probably be published. I used to be a reviewer and have written a few columns, so I know what I’m talking about. I’ll submit it to Fujin Koron.” The article described how she started rapping and her days with me.
And just as she guessed, it’s going to be published in Fujin Kohron! I never thought I’d be featured in a magazine as a rapper with Cole Ray, and it’s great that it’s in Fujin Koron, a magazine that young people don’t read, lol!
Then, just the other day, Cole Ray called. “Hey! Hey, hey, hey! Oh my goodness!” I was like, What is it? Just calm down! She said, “I can’t wait! I can’t wait! How can I!” I said, “Okay, okay, okay, So? What is it?” She said, “The movie! A movie! Movie!” I was like, “Hmm? A movie? What? Did you write a script or something?” She said, “It’s about me! It’s about us! I submitted an article to a women’s magazine, and it was on Yahoo News! That caught the attention of the director and producer! They said there’s a slight chance, and only one out of ten stories will make it, but they’d love to talk. I got an email from the editorial department saying that they might even ask me to write an additional script! I was like, Oh my god!! That’s so great! Now all your dreams are coming true! You’ll be invited as a guest to Tetsuko’s Room! You can get remarried too! You can publish your own artwork! You can do all this! I can do all of this!”
So it appears that the project to make a movie of her life is going to become a real thing! We had just been talking about how we should write a book about the two of us and go around to publishers to pitch it! What a surprise!
I never thought that laughing over dinner after a lesson, listening to Cole Ray’s complaints, and talking about my trivial matters would turn out like this!
It all happened just as I was finishing the first week of Instructor Ura’s Miross Life course. I don’t think it was a coincidence. I felt my mother’s emotions through my own experiences and the stories of other participants during the course.
Through my mother, I was also able to understand that I did have strong willpower, even though I never thought I did since I didn’t have my father around when I was growing up. (I hope to talk more about this in another article)
The day before all this occurred, my mother had asked me to give a message to Cole Ray. “Ms. Cole Ray, it’s amazing how far you’ve come in life despite everything that happened, and how you’ve never given up. Thank you for taking rap lessons from my son.” When I told Cole Ray, she was moved and cried for joy. I guess I could hear my own voice through her.
It may be made into a movie. It’s a wonderful and inspiring thing.
(By the way, please keep the movie deal between us for now, as it’s confidential.)
I’d just wanted to do what I loved! So I started rapping. Before I knew it, it became my path.
And then, one woman who lived for herself, doing what she wanted to do, decided to start that same way of life. I’m surprised and delighted that the value of these two people, or rather all the people involved in our lives, is so great that it could be made into a movie.
Whether I’m a recluse, a rapper, pathetic, or cool, I’m me. I’ve started, and this is the way to go. It’s not about being good at something or bad at something. In my experience, being able to do what you love is itself talent, and if you enjoy it, your talent will blossom on its own!
I love Miross, and it’s fun to try things that excites me. Within that excitement, I’ve experienced many things. And I go beyond those experiences to understand what they really meant for me. That’s why Miross, the life programs, me, my life, Mirros practice, and the programmer are amazing, I think.
I thought I might not be able to do reality submissions anymore. But I did!
Thank you for reading this far. Now, I’ll conclude my first post in three years with a thank you and put down my pen. Thank you, everyone! Thank you to everyone out there who’s reading this. I really appreciate it.