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Photos

Might as well jump

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Exploits

Off to Ski

Adam and T came to Sumoto tonight. We are immediately leaving on a ski trip, so we might not be reachable for a couple days… Breaking from tradition, we are headed for a closer ski resort in Hyogo instead of going all the way to Nagano this year. Happy new years, all!

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Web

Let’s just call it del.ish

Look what just popped up on screen:
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Once again, please note that YAHOO’S BUYOUT OF DEL.ICIO.US HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH RECENT MINOR GLITCHES/OUTAGES IN SERVICE. Last time it was a server upgrade. The time before that it was a power failure. This time, it’s that GODDAMN JOLLY SAINT NICK FELLER.

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Web

Delusional

The Federal Trade Commission has somehow convinced itself that their pitiful attempt at stopping spammers via anti-spam legislation is working.
Uh… Do any of those idiots actually use e-mail on a regular basis?

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Chillin'

X-mas Confession

I did something quite strange this year. I bought a Christmas cake, and ate it.
I have officially been in Japan for too long.
The cake was tasty, though.

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New Word

Definition: Nirvani

(Sanskrit) [Also nirvanee, nirvanin] One who enters, or has entered, nirvana.
We still can’t figure out why Beat Takeshi had Iranian factory workers greeting each other with this word in the movie “minna yatteruka.” It bears further inspection.

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Exploits

Fun with Sharpies

May this serve as a warning to never fall asleep in the same room that Adam and Michelle are drinking in. Amazingly enough, I had nothing to do with this. I just documented it for posterity.

The funny thing is, T doesn’t seem to mind. Yet. I might try taking him to a sento to see if how people react.

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Web

Delta Blues

Just wanted to point out an outstanding site dedicated to the blues: Junior’s Juke Joint
The design is simple, and I suspect that’s the way Junior likes it. Don’t let the looks deceive you – it’s filled with great stories and links. If you dig hard enough you’ll happen upon some real gems, like the ones below:
Eric Clapton: Me & Mr Johnson
Nellie Jackson’s Whorehouse
ANOMIE AND HOMELESSNESS: AN ETHNOGRAPHY OF RURAL NOMADS
That third link is pretty much a must-read.
Blues fans might be surprised to hear that I’ve met way more Robert Johnson fans in Japan than I ever did in the states.

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Web

Chikan ha akan

Finally: Sweet, sweet justice.
After my little sister got stalked home by some sicko in Sakai last year, I have absolutely zero sympathy for these fuckers. I’m also happy there were a couple of off-duty cops involved, as it may prevent the civilians who took the guy down from getting in trouble.

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Society & Culture

He got sauce

Fure, fure, Yoshida! Fure, fure, Yoshidaaaaaaa!
Sauce maker big in Japan
I’m all for the rags-to-riches aspect, but those chop-socky Yoshida Sauce ads just scream Japsploitation. (Yes, Master!)

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Chillin'

Today’s Question

Why is it even news that Toyota is expected to overtake General Motors as the world’s top automaker?
I don’t think anybody can dispute that Toyota makes better cars, or that they are the healthier company.
The market wins out, right? Besides, GM has been shooting itself in the foot so persistently for so long, they might as well switch over to shoemaking.

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Web

Hachi-roku it ain’t

Fairly entertaining drifting video: LINK

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Web

Just because he kicks ass

Go listen to Christopher Walken reciting The Raven
And look at the domain name it’s hosted on! I betcha I know the author of this page.

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Web

The Lyin’, the Biotch, and the Po-po

Yo, it’s Narnia rap time, ya’ll:
SNL – The Chronic of Narnia Rap

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Web

On the left side, on the right side

This story helps illustrate the importance of accurate documentation and redundant checking, which I have a hard time explaining to people sometimes.
The link above reminds me of a story I heard about a DC-10 accident when I was a a kid. The right engine caught on fire, so the pilot hit the kill switch, but the left and right engine switches were cross-wired…

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Our Wedding in Thailand

As My Elephant Softly Weeps

Note: Sorry if I’m boring the hell out of you with wedding stuff, but I only intend to get married once, and I want to document the entire process. Plus, it’ll be all over in a couple months.
Yesterday, spurred by my incessant urging, Nam called the pachyderm rental company. The closest one is apparently located in Surin province, an hour or so from Nam’s house in Mahasarakham. A while ago, I wrote that it only costs thirty bucks or so to rent an elephant for a day, so I had intended to rent several of the peanut-sniffing louts – Small, Medium, and Large, at least. Indeed this would have been possible as recently as a few years ago. Now, it is going to cost around ten times that much! What happened, you ask. Progress happened, my friends!
I am extremely happy to report that the sudden rise in price can be attributed to a single factor, one for which I am more than willing to pay. The elephant gets a ride to our house on a truck, instead of having to walk the entire distance on the side of the highway! This is something that I hadn’t even thought about before. I had just assumed that there were rent-a-elephant franchises a lot closer to Nam’s house. Apparently there is legislation forbidding the passage of walking elephants on the highways, or perhaps the people who own the beasts really care about them – either way, I’m happy! Plus, there’s an added bonus! The people who own the elephant said they would wash the elephant all nice and clean (this is not to be taken for granted in any SE Asian country), and pimp it out with a riding harness and ph-ph-ph-ph-phat threads! Awesome!
But the best is yet to come. Nam told the owners that we wanted to use the elly in our wedding parade, and asked if it would get spooked by all the people surrounding it, plus the drums, etc., that mark a traditional Cosmic Buddha gathering. Guess what? The elephant likes music. It dances when it hears drums. In other words, to start out our wedding day, I will be RIDING ON A PIMPED-OUT, DANCING ELEPHANT. Fuck a Cadillac, yo. Pachyderm is the new pimp. This is going to be the greatest day of my life.

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Web

Rub my tusk

Every informational plaque I’ve ever seen about the Narwhal at various aquariums and museums has stated that the true purpose of the tusk of the “unicorn of the sea” is unknown. Revisions, anyone?
Mystery of Narwhal Tusk Solved
That is one cool animal.

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Japanese Society/Culture

Do suru, Aiful?

Who would have thought that in the land of Nintendogs, airport pet hotels, and 20,000 dollar chihuahuas that:
A. There’s apparently a sizeable market for dog meat (but not heads – an indication it isn’t going into pho dac biet), and
B. Importing dogs for eating into Japan apparently isn’t illegal
This is definitely something to think about during your next visit to all-you-can-eat yakiniku.
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Update: The poster above really has nothing to do with the dog remains found dumped in the Tokyo moat. It’s a poster protesting the largest Japanese consumer finance (read: high-rate, collateral-secured loans) company, Aiful… I used the tagline for their commercials as the title for this post because the CM features Qoo-chan, probably the most famous dog in Japan besides Hachiko… Qoo-chan is a chihuahua, and (although it may not be true) people say they were bred by the Aztecs for eating, so…
Yes, today is free-association day.

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Moblog (archives)

UK Power Food

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UK, some of the best western food in Osaka. Until today, we hadn’t been here for 7 or 8 years.

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Moblog (archives)

No diesel, except for bikes?

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Gas prices at a Shell station in Takaida, Higashi Osaka.