Hanami in Yoyogi Park

A daruma thing i bought in Kamakura, you're supposed to write your wishes on the back and hang it up in the designated area at shrines.

the first time i've noticed one of these places in a back alley in shibuya. gambling is illegal in japan so Pachinko parlors here are technically for entertainment only. the balls that you win or watever they are can be taken to these places and exchanged for money so technically you're just exchanging balls for money via a third party business.

they put me and vivi in this closet sized thing at this izakaya. actually a closet is bigger than this.

Marco doing another live painting/drawing thing at this event with traditional indian music and sitars and stuff.

Roppongi Hills. this was on roppongi hills art night.

lone cherry blossom branch next to a construction site.

Rockabilly guys in Yoyogi park. they are here on the weekends rocking out. its weird and you can't really know how weird unless you watch the video below.

it was so cold this day. It put a damper on things. People still got sloshed and jolly though. I'm sure a lot more would have and it would have been a lot more fun if you didnt have to keep thinking about how cold you were. I'm sure this is an awesome and joyous time when it is warm.

We ended up meeting with another group from our school. and then it was too cold so we went to karaoke where most people got good and happy.


you can buy caloriemate in the vending machines

a magnolia

a weird statue in one of the halls. whats the deal with this

purple icecrem was everywhere. made out of purple sweet potatoes

and other purple sweet potatoes products like this sweet potatoe croque. yummy

one Jingja had Tengu all over the hill at the top. Tengu are mythical creatures that used to be human but turned into a crow basically. they used to be viewed as evil and soul stealers but now are seen as the protectors of the forest.

the big attraction in Kamakura.

there big sandals are not a big attraction.

a selection of fried goodness at this place.

double decker train. Anyway if you've been to Kyoto and Nara there is no way that Kamakura can offer you anything else except for a break from Tokyo. So i can't really recommend it for anything more than that.

March Mambo

Two things i forgot to mention about last month:

1. I saw a helicopter lifting off the rooftop of one of the embassies in my neighborhood. If i was 12 yrs old i would think it was so cool that some diplomat was being airlifted back to his country

2. There was a small earthquake that woke me up one day for about 10 seconds. I'm glad Japan is prepared for earthquakes.

Daikanyama apartments


Mr. Friendly Cafe somewhere in Ebisu. Is Mr. Friendly an American creation?

Billboard flourecent bulb changing

the bus to Ageha, the biggest club in tokyo. yes there is a special bus to take you there. and yes you can drink on the bus.

The Sapporo girls, Johnson and Kyo-chan are party animals and love Ageha. Akari on the left is less of a party animal. Sorry Akari but you just don't love Ageha as much as these two.

the ageha ticket window and the point at which they said you can't take cameras inside. Ageha is the first club where in tokyo i have gone to where they do proper body searches. I wasn't very happy about having to check my camera so there are no pics from inside. It's pretty big, and basically looks like a big roller derby and has an outside "pond" where lots of people were dancing to reggae. and a few of the songs, somehow every Japanese person knew how to do some little dance to and it was weird and wonderful.

Johnson got too much party and ended up here and the night was over. Ageha is cool but it is far away from central tokyo so it makes going home on the first train even more of a not so awesome thing.

sunday night, Marco did a live painting thing at this bar in Ikejiro Ohashi. there is a music label called Colors and they make weird/interesting electronic/etc... music. there were lots of members there. It was basically a nerd party with nerds making music, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, or a good thing. this fat sweaty guy had his turn. he was like the inspector gadget of sound making. he kept whipping out different pieces of technology all synced to his laptop. here is is pressing buttons on some light up pad. later he brought out some weird electronic cello like thing.

Katsuya, the lover of visual rock music is in hell right now. the electo cello guy has some kind of motion sensor strapped to his cello bow hand. Katsuya has no recourse but to sit there for 20 minutes and take it all.

a quasi Mori girl bouncing around and wailing into a microphone while electronic music blares(it was really loud down there) and a guy bangs on a djembe drum.

marco and his live painting in progress. an interesting experience

Mid March - The week in Review

its so damn expensive to travel inside of japan so no one could go anywhere and i need to save money for when my friends come, then bob comes for 3 weeks, then my parents after that. so in lieu of a vacation i am taking the 3 week "conversation" class that is voluntary at our school. they make us put the desks in circles now. i forgot to mention that just like the school and just like everything else in japan the desks are sooooo small. about every 5 minutes someones books whill spill off onto the floor. its dangerous to even lean on the desk. there is room for about 1 book and 1 pencil if you put them flush next to each other.

expensive koi nobori. like $100 each

I am in love with this chain restaurant called Sukiya. they have the cheapest prices and probably are the most unhealthy. this is the same place where you can make the bootleg halal lamb on rice cheese faux NYC street food bowl complete with white sauce aka some kind of fatty dressing. with their menu i could come here everyday for a month and eat something new. pictured here is a 540 yen set ($6). i know i know is $6 really cheap Jason? well it is for tokyo.

my roomate naoki brought back a few cartons of Lemon milk which is a famous miyage to get from Tochigi. at first i was like um..... i hate milk and lemon milk sounds even worse. then one day he was in the kitchen and said to try some so i had to and i was pleasantly surprised to find that it is like drinking liquid lemon icecream. sooooo delicious and not like lemon at all.

hashimoto sensei. these poor teachers. they work about 12 hrs a day 6 days a week most of them and they even have these cleaning days where they all have to wear these school sweat shirts and clean the school.

i mean they really have to clean it

Including all the slippers that have been worn for months by us dirty gaijin scum

we went over how to describe someone's face today and these were the educational aids, some of which look like they have been used since the 80's hence the Mikhail Gorbechov, George Bush Senior, Some american thats only famous in japan, and Sly Stone.

marco and this 18 yr old taiwanese guy that doesnt want to be here doing an exercise with much enthusiasm in class.

Marco with his hand all up in mega superstar singer Namie Amuro

what is up with lolita style? what are the girls motivations or hangups or/why are they so f'ed up or do they hate their fathers or wats going on there. if someone has a good link to article about this fire away. this is quasi lolita style according to my friend.

watching this thing bounce is like watching the red bouncing ball in old school sing along song videos, its so bouncy and jarring that there's no way you can get lost. her lolita skirt said in yellow wrap around letters "how are the biscuits?" in french. They were delicious. try one yourself, hit play

this is Shirako. its on weird japanese food lists all the time. its fish genitalia, with fish sperm inside. it has a weird texture but im sure its packed with protein.

Yuba, tofu skin. its the skin that congeals at the top of tofu when they make it, you know like on the top of tomato soup. delicious.

Whale meat. Yes whale meat. i've been wanting to try it too. but if you must know my friends said that it is super rare that they ever eat this.

we went to a place with my roomates friend and she is like a tokyo guide so this is probably real whale meat (you have to watch out cuz i guess they try to pass off dolphin meat as whale meat in some places). it was kind of like beef actually. a little chewy like beef. it was weird because you're thinking fish but you're eating beef. it was good though and probably super protein packed.