Missing Osaka

The idea being tested: Even strangers in Osaka will play along when you pretend to shoot or cut them down.

Some of these seem staged; I’ve seen crazier stuff though, and if nothing else, the fact that it seems possible is why Osaka is so fucking cool.
For the record, I’ve never seen this done to a stranger in Japan, but you see it all the time among friends. Come to think of it, among friends at least, everybody overacts like they’re being shot. An alternative to the standard ban! (bang!) is firing an imaginary revolver dry. That sounds something like this: ban! ban! ban! ban! ban! ban! kacha.. kacha.. kacha!

New Years in the Fields – Preview

This is a preview to a photo series I shot during our New Years holiday. I’ve been meaning to put it together since I shot it but Max got sick and life got in the way, etc., etc., and so forth (quote from KoS). I’m now busy doing other things, but perhaps I’ll get around to it this weekend.
On the second day of the new year, our nanny invited us to her village for the bi-annual emptying of a communal fishpond. We piled into our trusty ’71 Crown, picked up a Japanese teacher who wanted to experience village life, and headed out deep into the rice fields. Actually, we first stopped at our nanny’s village so we could follow a pickup out to the final destination. I always carry rubber mats, wooden planks, and a shovel in the back of my car to get out of mudholes and sandy spots encountered in the back country, but with the family along for the ride it was comforting to have an escort (also, you never know when a feral Brahmin cow will decide to play cape buffalo and it’s nice to have a pickup to play decoy in such situations). The road was non-existent in places and we simply drove over drained and harvested rice fields along the paths of least resistance; I only scraped bottom once when I misjudged the far side of a steep bump. Several times, the pickup driver stopped an got out to warn me about a particularly rough patch ahead and asked if I just wanted to stop and park, but choosing the right lines is something of an obsession when I’m driving and I was lucky enough to choose correctly that day.
We eventually arrived to within walking distance (perhaps half a kilo) of the pond, which was being drained with a pump attachment hooked up to an iron buffalo (large roto-tiller or walking tractor). While waiting for the pond to drain, most of the hunters were out looking for field rats. This is where I started photo documenting the day.

To Be Continued…

Roseola Update

Max is recovering slowly but surely and the red spots all over his face and body are steadily disappearing. It’s still so hard to watch him suffer from the bouts of itchiness and teething that hit once in a while, but things are better than they were before. At least he can sleep for several hours at a time now. He still has a runny nose but we took him off all of the meds the pediatrician put him on because the congestion is just a nuisance and not really affecting his breathing at night anymore.
So it seems he is out of the woods. Hell, with roseola perhaps he was never really in the woods, but I tell you, there’s no feeling like when your child is suffering… It’s like every parent ever tells you, except worse because when you feel it there’s absolutely no sense of elation in thinking to yourself, “Oh, it really does feel horrible.”
OK, I need to stop thinking about the negative stuff now and end with a Maxie chaser (from New Years since I haven’t really taken photos since then):