The Incredible Power of Serendipity – Highlights of an Uncommon Life

How Serendipity Shaped the Life of Author Boyé Lafayette De Mente

 This is the personal memoir of author Boyé Lafayette De Mente, the 4th of ten children born to poor parents in an isolated valley in the Ozark Hills of southeast Missouri, and raised during the Great Depression of the 1930s.

He went on to have a remarkable life which he attributes to the incredible power of serendipity.

As editor of The IMPORTER magazine in Tokyo in the late 1950s and early 1960s and as the author of numerous pioneer books on the mindset and business practices of the Chinese, Japanese and South Koreans he made  major contributions to the initial rise of Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong and China as economic superpowers.

He played a leading role in helping to launch the career of Thunderbird School of Global Management alumnae brother Merle Hinrichs who became the largest trade magazine publisher in Asia, a major financial donor to Thunderbird and member of the board of directors.

And he launched the publishing career of Kentucky hillbilly Larry Flynt who achieved great wealth and notoriety as the publisher of HUSTLER magazine and champion of freedom of speech.  [On the day De Mente met Flynt he told his wife that he had just met a 26-year old man who had the intelligence and drive to become president of the United States by the time he was old enough to qualify for the office.]

De Mente’s encounters and relationships with such extraordinary individuals as Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, America’s ranking naval officer during World War II; Akio Morita, co-founder and leading light of what was to become the Sony empire; Toshio Karita, former protocol officer for the Imperial Family of Japan; and Daisetzu Suzuki, Japan’s leading Zen master, plus many more, were experiences he could not have even dreamed about before they happened.

His story is an example of the potential of ordinary individuals to achieve significant things when life presents opportunities and they follow up on them.

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the plague of male dominance and the moral collapse of the U.S. and the Western world in general. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way! To see a full list of his 60-plus books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. All of his titles are available from Amazon.com.

9781469986166_frontcover9781470125837_frontcoverSPEAK JAPANESE FRONT COVER0914778838_frontcover0914778994_frontcover0914778250_frontcover9781468033298_frontcover

 

The New Japanese Way of Doing Business!

   When the traditional Japanese way of doing business began to fail in the late 1980s, putting the brakes on the economic juggernaut that had made the country the second largest economy in the world in just 20 years following the end of World War II, Japanese businesspeople began to adopt selected Western practices. This process was speeded up in the 1990s when competition from South Korea, Taiwan and China became an even greater threat, resulting in a hybrid business system that continues to evolve today.

This book explains the rise and fall of Japan as the second largest economy in the world, describes the present-day still evolving system, including steps Japan’s business world is taking to make sure it still has a major role to play in the world economy.

While most of the new changes are taking place below the radar of the world at large they are harbingers of what the global economy is becoming and what other companies and countries must do to stay in the game. The book is available from Amazon.com in both digital [$4.95] and printed [$14.95] editions.

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the plague of male dominance and the moral collapse of the U.S. and the Western world in general. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way! To see a full list of his 60-plus books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. All of his titles are available from Amazon.com.

9781470125837_frontcoverSPEAK JAPANESE FRONT COVER0914778250_frontcover0914778994_frontcover9781468033298_frontcover

AMAZING JAPAN! – Attractions and Pleasures

Aspects of Japan’s Unique Culture

Most Westerners who visit Japan for no more than three or four days are forever changed by the experience because of the extraordinary  sensual and visual attractions and because of the unique Japanese behavior and lifestyle.

This book identifies and describes the primary factors that make Japan such a fascinating and seductive place, including the amazing number and variety of venues that are designed specifically to pleasure the body, mind and spirit.

Not surprising to old Asia hands, the children, the girls and the young women are major contributors to the appeal of Japan….a factor I have addressed in WHY ORIENTAL GIRLS ATTRACT WESTERN MEN!

There are so many aspects of Japan that never fail to intrigue foreigners that they cannot all be adequately described….they have to be experienced!

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the plague of male dominance and the moral collapse of the U.S. and the Western world in general. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way! To see a full list of his 60-plus books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. All of his titles are available from Amazon.com.

SPEAK JAPANESE FRONT COVER0914778994_frontcover

 

Playing the Geisha Game in Present-Day Japan!

  Boyé Lafayette De Mente

 TOKYO–During the 1600s in Edo (Tokyo) a special class of women entertainers who were skilled at playing the shamisen, singing, and dancing gradually came to be known as geisha (gay-ee-shah). Famous courtesans in Japan’s numerous red-light districts regularly hired geisha to help them entertain their high profile customers.

 

   The geisha also performed for private parties in inns and restaurants. As the decades of the Edo era (1603-1868) passed, their training became more formalized and strict, and the profession grew in stature.

 

   Although geisha did not work as prostitutes it became customary for them to form intimate liaisons with affluent men who patronized them regularly and treated them more or less as mistresses.

 

     With the deterioration of the licensed gay quarters following the downfall of the Tokugawa Shogunate in 1867, the social status of prostitutes began to drop and that of the geisha to rise. Their training was expanded to include lessons in etiquette, grace, flower arranging, the tea ceremony, and in how to be stimulating conversationalists, making them among the most accomplished women in the country.

 

   Within a few decades the position of prostitutes and geisha had completed reversed. Geisha were the most elite of public women, and prostitutes the lowest. Wealthy businessmen and high-ranking politicians began to vie with each other to make the most famous geisha their mistresses.

 

   It was, in fact, common for men of wealth and power to marry their geisha mistresses, with one notable example being Hirobumi Ito (1841-1909), who played a key role in the overthrow of the Tokugawa Shogunate in the 1860s, became the chief architect of Japan’s first constitution, and served as prime minister four times.

 

   Since Japanese wives did not participate directly or publicly with men in business or in politics, and therefore could not act as hostesses for their husbands or other men, geisha came to perform this valuable function, dressing up meetings and making sure things ran smoothly.

 

     As late as the 1950s, Tokyo alone had over a dozen large so-called geisha districts, which consisted of clusters of ryotei (rio-tay) or inn-restaurantsthat called in geisha to serve their customers. The services of the geisha were so costly that only wealthy businessmen and high-ranking politicians and government bureaucrats could afford to patronize them.

 

   Then the rapid transformation of Japan into an economic super power from the 1950s to the 1970s saw the equally rapid rise of thousands of cabarets and night clubs that featured hostesses as drinking, dancing and conversational companions, with fees far below what geisha inns charged.

 

   The more attractive the hostesses, and the more skilled they were in entertaining men, the more they could earn. This naturally attracted some of the most beautiful and socially talented young women in the country. Hundreds if not thousands of these remarkable women became millionaires. Like the geisha of an early day, many of them married well. One married the then president of Indonesia, Sukarno, and became an international celebrity.

 

     The reign of the huge businessmen-oriented hostess cabarets and nightclubs ended in the late 1980s when Japan’s economic bubble begin to deflate. The geisha survived the economic fallout but they remained on the fringe of Japan’s entertainment world. In Kyoto, in particular, there are well-known geisha districts, with many of the women in the trade being third and fourth generation geisha.

 

   In the evenings in Tokyo’s Akasaka district, which borders the country’s government center, one can still see geisha being delivered to ryotei and ryokan in rickshaws pulled by men wearing traditional Edo age garb.

   Most geisha now voluntarily enter the profession when they are in their late teens. Their training is less formal and less comprehensive—often as little as a few weeks, as opposed to years in earlier times.

 

     But today’s instant geisha are just as fascinating, just as entertaining, if not more so, than their predecessors. And they are almost always more attractive because today their popularity and success is more dependent upon their looks.

 

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the moral collapse of the U.S. along with books on his home state of Arizona. To see a full list of his books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way!

Face Reading Goes High-Tech, with Profound Implications for Future

Boyé Lafayette De Mente

The ancient Asian art of face-reading has gone high-tech in Japan. Japanese scientists are now applying high-speed photographic technology to the art, adding a new dimension to understanding human feelings and human communication—a development that could eventually change most human interactions.

 

     This new development is being led by electronics manufacturer Omron’s Keihanna Technology Innovation Center [KTIC] in its O’kao (Honorable Face) face-sensing technology project.

 

    The KTIC has over one million photos of the faces of some 9,000 people that reveal different facial expressions that are then related to meanings and moods—taking the art of face-reading to a level never dreamed of before.

 

    The researchers say the new technology can be applied in many ways, from linking people with devices and machines to revealing a person’s innermost thoughts that may be contrary to what they are saying—going beyond a sophisticated lie-detector to virtually reading a person’s mind.

 

     Japanese researchers at Meiji University School of Science and Technology (MUSST) are taking this new innovation in a different direction by linking facial movements to operating electronic devices, giving the impression of virtual thought-control.

 

     MUSST’s main project is a robotic face [called Kansei or “Sensibilities”] that has a data base of half a million words with facial expressions that relate to meanings of the words.

 

     The creator of the robotic face, Prof. Junichi Takeno, says his goal is to discover the mechanisms of consciousness.  At this time his robot face has 36 expressions—probably more than the average person thinks he or she is capable of expressing.

 

     Among the practical applications of the new face-reading approach: enhanced security systems; photo booth cameras that manipulate colors and contrasts to make the subjects more attractive; turn electronic devices off and on; manipulate household appliances that have embedded chips; and act as backups for drivers who become fatigued or whose attention is distracted—in other words, the ultimate remote controls.

 

     Face-reading as both an art and science was originally studied and institutionalized in China some 3,000 years ago by physicians who began to relate facial features with intelligence, character, personality, sexuality and other human attributes as part of their health-care practices.

 

     From the health-care industry, face-reading became a skill that was used by the Chinese military, by business people, and by men seeking more amorous female partners—the latter use making it especially popular among ordinary people. [Many of the readings are sensually oriented.]

 

    From around the 14th century A.D. Japanese priests and others who had occasion to visit China picked up on the face-reading theory and practice of the Chinese and introduced it into Japan.

 

     I began studying the art in Japan in the mid-1950s after being inspired by the face-reader brought in by the military in 1939 to help decide what kind of training new recruits were best suited for. He was living in Chiba at that time and readily agreed to be interviewed.

 

     I subsequently wrote a book entitled Face-Reading for Fun & Profit [recently republished as Asian Face Reading: Unlock the Secrets Hidden in the Human Face], went on a lecture tour in the U.S., and appeared on the then popular What’s My Line television show in New York.

 

     This activity helped promote the use of face-reading in the corporate world of American, with some companies using face-readers in their recruiting efforts as well as in their decisions to promote employees to higher positions. But we remain far behind the Chinese, Japanese and Koreans in using face-reading insights in business as well as in social relationships

 

     Still, everybody face reads. In fact, it is the very first thing we do when seeing or meeting someone for the first time, and throughout life we continue to read the faces of people we are talking to or listening to, and everyone automatically makes judgments about the character, veracity, etc., of these individuals.

 

    But there are over one hundred precise readings based on the size, shape and quality of the facial features, and without special knowledge or training most people recognize and react to less than half of this number.

 

     Face-reading is an important element in the non-verbal communication that is common in all cultures, and can be vital in cross-cultural business, diplomatic and political relationships. It also plays a key role in the election of candidates to political offices.

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the moral collapse of the U.S. along with books on his home state of Arizona. To see a full list of his books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way!