2011-12-29

Hachiko

Hachiko is the famous dog that waited for his master at the train station for 9 years after he had died. There was even a movie about him. At Shibuya Station there is a statue of him which serves as a landmark for many people to meet each other before moving off to so whatever it is they will do.

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The statue’s fame was obviously not lost on the marketing team for Softbank who placed this outside the Shibuya Yamada Denki Labi1.

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2011-12-27

Portraits #9

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And there was light.

Another year has come to an end and with that comes another trip to the top of Mt.Haruna to see the illumination. We once again made our way to the top of the mountain to see the spectacular.
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2011-12-16

New Toy

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I know it’s not the best lens in the catalogue and that you all have one lying around cos you got it with your kit… but I didn’t and with the release of the powerzoom model these now go for ¥7000 brand new on Yahoo Auctions. It’s practically free. Gives my landscapes and skies more width so I am pretty happy. Now we just need to see how the LUMIX GH3 performs before I decide whether I spend money on a dinosaur mirrorbox monstrosity or if I stay with the future of cameras (m4/3) and shell out for some Xseries lenses.

2011-12-15

Ecliptica

It was not my intention to make a timelapse but the shots I took happen to work as one.

2011-12-11

Total Eclipse of the Hea…Moon

All eclipses are spectacular events. Times when we can glimpse the true complexity of the system we inhabit first hand. They give us a sense of perspective, and remind us how amazing being a life-form on this planet really is…
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The Gunma Astronomical Observatory had had an event of sorts and many people braved the freezing temperatures to witness this cosmic phenomenon. I have personally seen a rather large number of lunar eclipses but to my memory this is the first time I had seen a total one not to mention one that took so long.
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Sadly the realisation of out place in the universe was lost on the vast majority who looked upon the spectacle. I sadly had to return to earth after some time and with that the lies and webs of bullshit that society has buried itself in washed back over me smothering the short time of enlightenment I had with routine and the never-ending human quest to acquire more and more useless stuff. The sad thing i that I know it and I still can’t escape.
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2011-12-02

UNI-BLOW

Winter is here... Time deal with all the UNI-CLO (Japanese Mr.Price) worshippers going on and on about their trademarked HEAT TECH crap as if it is some magical all fixing wonder clothing. You can buy cheap polyester from any old store and save on the trademark premium. Of course you wont be as cool as uniclones, but who wants to be cool in winter?

2011-11-25

The Great A’Tuin returns!

P1220591Due to the great success of this lesson with my 3rd graders last year, I decided to to it again.

I set out to describe a picture of A’Tuin to my students using phrases like “There is a big sea turtle. There are 4 elephant’s on it’s back.” etc… The students then used their imaginations and artistic skills to bring what they heard to life.

Once again the drawings were rather spectacular!  check the slideshow to see all 100.

2011-11-11

The leaves, they are a changing.

It’s getting too cold to type at night and that means winter is on it’s way. But in giving way to it’s cold hearted sibling Autumn does give us some of the most beautiful natural scenery imaginable. Blue skies set against the warm palette of dying leaves. We managed to catch the beginnings of it on our last drive into the mountains of Gunma…

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Unlike the majority on the roads that day however. Nature’s beauty was not the reason for us to venture out on to the mountain passes. It just happened to be there when we went for our drive.

2011-11-07

Shots #70 A Yokohama Landmark

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This is the most appropriately yet most unoriginally named building on Earth.

Yes. It’s called…

LANDMARK TOWER!

2011-11-05

FD on the Shuto

I love driving in Tokyo and I love the expressways (when I am not getting lost on them).

So much better than the train though so much more expensive as well.

I was just cruising on the Shuto Expressway to Daikoku PA when this guy strolled past. No racing or anything, just a cool car.

2011-11-03

Daikoku Halloween

We went through to the greatest car show in Japan that isn’t a car show with the expectation that large numbers of people had planned to pull through, but sadly the panda brigade got wind of it and decided to be dicks about it. In the short time we had however we did get to see a few sweet rides.

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Will have to go back again on a regular Saturday night.

2011-11-01

Pandas are useless.

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It’s a man made island in Tokyo bay. Nobody lives there. Nobody is being disturbed. There are no drugs. There is no fighting. There is no booze. There are no Yakuza. No whoring. No date-raping. No murder. There wasn’t even any litter! The only people there are those who want to see/show off their cars and play/listen to the music. Instead of actually doing any good for society 7 pandas filled with Yokohama’s “finest” decided to close down Daikoku PA. Yeah. Clearly a bunch of petrol heads, music lovers and show-offs were a threat to the stability of the whole nation.
It’s because putting speakers in your van and bright lights on your car is one of the most horrible past times in Japan. It’s so much worse than pachinko, passing out after drinking too much at a hostess club, octopus porn and withholding vital information from the public, thus endangering the lives of thousands of people to save face.

2011-10-24

Heart Transplant

P1210673One of my buddies wrote off his Silvia S15 recently. He got himself 2 S14s to replace it. The first had a Tomei Power Complete 2.2 litre engine but the body was scrap. The second was an engineless body. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see what needed to be done.

2011-10-17

Love Rock 4 @ Trust 55–Takasaki (2011-10-09) Video Test.

The sound sucks because there is no way to change levels on my cam.

IJust wanted to check how the footage in a live would come out.

2011-10-15

Love Rock 4 @ Trust 55–Takasaki (2011-10-09) Live Report of sorts… PART 2

 

Continued from here.

So having built up a charge of energy worthy of a metal show far beyond that which I had expected for a show of this size. I waited to see if the following band would do anything to let me release that charge…
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In two words… FU*K YES!

2011-10-12

Love Rock 4 @ Trust 55–Takasaki (2011-10-09) Live Report of sorts… PART 1

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We just had another long weekend in Japan and slap bang in the middle of it was another one of those big small live festivals at Trust 55 in Takasaki. After making so many friends the last time, I knew my lady and I would have fun at this event. I was right…

2011-10-11

I am whole once more…

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I have been waiting a long time for this day. I forgot how frustrating a normal car could be. but thankfully that is no more. Getting hit by a bus is never good, but sometimes (with a little help from insurance) things can work out well.

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2011-10-01

Mizusawa Shrine

P1200394Located somewhere on Mt. Haruna’s thighs is the little village of Mizusawa. Famous for it’s udon and it”s shrine complex.  Being only 15 minutes away from my house I have made a number of visits to the various udon establishments there. Though I always knew the shrine was there, I never had any inclination to go there. Till my lady said she wanted to :p

2011-09-27

Ofunato Volunteering - September 2011

allhandsWe had a Friday public holiday last week in Japan which afforded me the chance to go back to Ofunato for a lightning volunteer trip with All Hands. I put the word out as I did before, but this time the call was answered by a fellow ALT in my city. We finished our work on Thursday, packed the loaner car I am currently driving (this is why) and headed north.