The Setsubun “Oni” books on a display at a local bookstore.  The little boy on the bottom left corner is throwing beans to celebrate setsubun.


More setsubun “Oni” books at the same store.  I really wanted to buy the book on the bottom left corner.  I almost did.  I brought it up to the cash register, handed it to the merchant, he rang it up–STOP!  I did not buy it.  Despite its cute adorableness, its delightful charm, its fascinating allure, I did not buy it.

The reason I did not buy it is because it is not in English–it is in Japanese–and because it costs money that I don’t want to spend.  I just don’t have money to spend on Japanese Oni books for five year olds when my son is already twelve, no matter how appealing the Oni may be!

It’s a bilingual family’s dilemma–to purchase language A or language B?  A Bi-lemma, one might say.