Day 13: Katamari

Katamari Damacy is a Japanese video game. The core premise is that you roll around a sticky ball (the titular Katamari) picking up small things at first, then bigger and bigger before launching it into the sky to make a new star – or something like that, it’s Japanese and ergo wholly incomprehensible. It’s also got the catchiest title song of any game ever, for what it’s worth.

I mention this because I like to think of myself (after reading it used to describe a musician – it was either Sufjan Stevens or Das Racist, I can’t remember – and stealing the metaphor) as a cultural Katamari. I roll around picking up bits and bobs from here and there, ever greater ideas and knowledge and folklore and pop culture. People hear this in the way I speak, where a sentence will have an English “well” (used as an intensifier) and a Scottish “aye”, an Italian “boh” (an apathetic “don’t know”) and a Spanish “mañana” (literally “tomorrow”, but practically “We’ll get around to it whenever”), along with the usual selection of Australianisms (“stoked”, “piker”, “buggered”) which Americans have been swooning over. And as noted previously, two decades of exposure to American popular culture has brought its own influences: “hella” from California, “y’all” from the south, “nahmean” from black New York.

I’ve sort of realised that I should probably ease up on those latter ones in case someone thinks I’m taking the piss and gets offended by it.


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