The immigration has decided to do away with the Alien Registration Card for foreigners from July 2012. If you’re a resident of Japan, you probably have received a letter recently to ask you to make sure that your name is correctly printed before they issue you a 住民票 (Resident Card) from next July. I’m guessing this is similar to the Citizen Card Japanese hold.
Most of you probably don’t have to do anything but when I came over and registered my name, I filled the Katakana for my family name as リム and now I’ve decided to change it to リン because I simply have too many names to confuse things. For one, as a Chinese Singaporean, I have my name in Kanji. Then I have the Hanyu Pinyin version of my name as well as the dialect version. Since the Japanese do not differentiate the /n/ and the /m/ sounds, I think ン would be a more compact transliteration of my family name. Besides, I’ve registered the ン Kana for most other stuff I signed up.
Whatever it is, I’ll no longer be an alien come July 2012.
Nevertheless, I come in peace.