Friday, October 24, 2008


This week we have discussed anorexia, exorcism, the pain of flamenco and the world financial crisis - now for something light hearted.

I am sure you’ve seen the news story that a plant in Japan is now writing its own blog.

They say that the Prince of Wales is a bit dotty because he talks to his plants but maybe he knows something that we don’t.

The plant in Japan largely seems to make comments about the weather which given the Royal small talk when meeting the hoi polloi – “Have you come far?” - suggests to me at least that the Prince and his plants are on a fairly equal footing.

I suspect the Queen believes her son to be a bit dotty too. How else can you explain why at the age of 82 she’s hauled her 87 year-old hubby off on a State visit to Slovakia? Obviously she daren’t let poor old Charles loose even now he’s turned 60. She probably fears that he’ll make his speech to the flower arrangements on the banquet table rather than to the invited guests.

Meanwhile “Midori-san”, the 40 cm high plant, is sitting in a café in Kamakura near Tokyo thinking how it is going to end its week of blogging. The plant has sensors attached to it and his waterer, Satoshi Kuribayashi, says that electrical pulses are sent from the plant to a computer that translates the data in to words. If you want to know what the plant is saying go to: - it’s probably writing more sense than I am.

“Midori-san” apparently means green in Japanese and the plant certainly seems green when it comes to the art of blogging. “It was cloudy. It was a cold day” is just one of its postings. I suspect Prince Charles is analysing those words for a deeper meaning. Sir Laurens Van Der Post was his mentor so poor Charles is probably frantically thumbing through his copy of “The Seed and the Sower” as you read this.

Kuribayashi says in the future “Midori-san” will make more precise statements. As I understand the plant is a type of cactus – some prickly comments might be in order. Of course the Duke of Edinburg would be your man for that!

(Since writing this I’ve checked out the blog of “Midori-san” and I have to say it doesn’t look like a cactus to me – but then what do I know. The plant asked me to tell you: 今日は雨が降って、寒い一日でした。 今日の占いは、…まあまあだったけど、みんな良かったです! あとブログからいっぱいの光をもらえてうれしい! そんな今日は、ほどほどに楽しんだ一日です。
If you are stuck over a word or two my good friend Alberto Bullrich will be happy to give you an instant translation.)

1 comment:

Alberto Bullrich said...

Umm... Japanese isn't really my forte , David, but thanks for the pointer. However, your wonderful blog can easily, if hilariously, be translated into almost any language by Godgle - sorry, Google.
As to talking to plants, mine said "Gerroff!" to me this morning and I hadn't even wished them a good morning yet...