Sa Ru Later...

Tonight is the big Monkey Majik concert. Ending their Sold Out tour here in Sendai, the boys come home to roost and we'll be there to greet them. I'm certain they'll put on a wild show for us (and the other punters who came to see them) and hopefully we'll have an equally wild after-party.

Stay tune tomorrow for a review, until then Sa Ru Later! (You see, SARU means monkey so it's a bit of a pun...hahaha)


Just the Basics.

Or that should be the Vesak. Japan celebrates this particular Bhuddist celebration a month later than more Southerly Asian countries, but a good time is always had by all.
Juicier and Juicier.

Ah, the repercussions of the last Saturday's event continue to trickle in. We managed to rake in a sweet 1250 yen profit from the extravaganza! First time out of the red in ages. (It would have been sweeter, had it not have been necessary to add to the coffers of the Tokyo duo.)

DJ Mark Saito has a terrific blog write up here, has a podcast here and has posted his very own YouTube tribute:

Other write-ups include one from Mr. Organizer (DJ Mixture) and our new Echophonyk Webpage designer, Nori.

According to these guys, they actually enjoyed DJs Wayyne and Whatever. Am I getting too old for this doodoo? (Or do I just hate techno?)

The next formal event will be on August 24th. Details to follow...


It's Alive!

I learned from Mark Evanier that Young Frankenstein opens in Seattle in October. Fast on the heels of the Producers (the movie about a play that became a play about a play that was remade as a movie about a play), Mel Brooks has again dipped into his vast repetoire of cinematic history to make yet another Broadway extravaganza. Expect it to win lots of Tony awards next year and a remake to be made in the near future. Though who they could ever get to replace Peter Boyle is beyond me. Maybe the guy who played Bull on Night Court, or that tall dopey guy who played Boyle's son in That's Raymond (or whatever it was called.)

It brings to mind other Brooks movies to mine for theatrical gold. I think 12 Chairs (a rarely seen Brooks flick from 1970) was originally a Russian stage play, so how about High Anxiety? It'll be hard to duplicate the Vertigo effect of the staircase scene for the theatre and it just isn't feasible to have all those Birds pooping on our hapless psychiatrist. Blazing Saddles would be great, it already breaks the 4th wall and is ripe for picking, but the theatre itself would become ripe after the farting scene. Robin Hood, Men in Tights; History of the World, Part I; Dracula, Dead & Loving it; Spaceballs; (I can't think of any more off the top of my head)? Oh a few more...Life Stinks; To Be or Not To Be. That's a remake of a Jack Benny movie, so it may have been a stageplay as well. (I'm trying to do this without resorting to Wiki.) Oh, I forgot Silent Movie, which by definition would make a pretty quiet musical!

What has Mel done in the last 2 decades? His last several movies all came out a few years after the intended target they spoofed. But that doesn't mean he can't milk them dry on stage. (I finally resorted to Wiki. Lo and behold...Spaceballs is becoming a cartoon!

But after all that being said, I'd love to see It's Alive on stage. Much of it takes place on a stage already (Putting on the Ritz), so it's a natural. I just hope the title doesn't dissuade people from seeing this play...


A Ghost of a Chance.

If you want to rate your blog to see if you've been naughty or nice, you can go here to do so.

I get a PG! Online Dating


What is shocking about my rating, is that I get my PG based on 4 "craps" and a "pooped". It makes it sound like I'm writing about foecophilia or some other scatalogical musing. I try not to use the "F-word" or other such naughty expletives but I'm pretty sure "crap" refers to the toys in my apartment and "pooped" refers to a state of tiredness. I guess they ignored that whole entry on the Willie-Festival and they didn't notice all those pics of the Penis-Parade. That alone should grant me an R-rating, or at least a NC-17, shouldn't it?

BTW, I learned of the rating system while reading Cocktail Party Physics, a blog all about Physics (oooh, how high-brow). This particular entry was about Ghosts and apparitions etc, and Japan loves its 妖怪 (yokai=goblins).

This image is from: YOSHITOSHI TSUKIOKA: The Ghost of Okiku at the Dish Mansion: New Forms of Thirty-Six Ghosts, 1889-1892. Does it RING a bell?


Generous to a Fault. (Alternate title: Stuff and Nonsense.)

Anybody who knows me, knows that I'm a nice guy. I can be a cantancerous old bugger at times, but for the most part, I'm a nice guy. Another thing that anybody who knows me knows is that I have a lot of stuff.

I tend to collect stuff. I have boxes and boxes of stuff in my apartment (and in a locker in Canada), but that's okay because of that aforementioned generosity. (*I'm working on a set of Lupin coffee collectibles right now. I have the set of the red capped collection because you can see what you're getting. The blue set of phone straps are unviewable, so I've already got some doubles. Once it's completed, I'll post pictures for you.)

You see, I collect this stuff until I've completed a set of stuff I like and often get several duplicates along the way. Then I tend to give this stuff away. I go to the UFO catcher drop 5 or 10 bucks, keep what I want and then give out the undesireables to friends or to random strangers. Now, I have so much stuff and such tremendous generosity that I have begun mailing out my stuff to complete strangers in other countries. One such stranger is Laura, who in gratitude for all her technical help over the last year is the happy recipient of a box of Pocky and other goodies. You can check out her site and get all sorts of info on Comics and the real world. She surfs the net, so you don't have to and then dumps the links. You may also want to see her Aquaman site or her husband's Wizard of Oz site.

So as you can see, I'm a nice guy. I'm also broke all the time...I wonder why that is?

Here's George Carlin talking about a place to keep your stuff:

A carton of Juicy.

Well, it was a pretty raucous evening. It was good partying with Mark again and I eventually returned home at 5:00, nice to cab home in the early morning sunshine. DJ Mokugohan started the ball rolling with a mellow funk that included my new all-time favourite mix, some weird "Superfriends" extravaganza (it now replaces his "Rocky Horror Science Fiction" tune as my favourite.) J-Loop's set was nice and sweet (and for once, I sat through the entire thing.) Then Mark Saito went nuts with his wacky mishmash of genres via his new Mac Remixing thingamagig (don't you love it when I get all technical?) The showcase act was this John Wayyne vs Beat Respect duo that I completely loathed. It was the most derivative techno/house/trance set I've ever heard. It was all down on cds that they had self-produced (how hard is that to spin?) and according to the ladies in the place, they were a pair of horny octopi. Needless to say I was unimpressed. DJs Mixture & Taka played back and forth until 4 (I really enjoyed their stuff but was getting kinda pooped.) Then the "Duke" got back up and it was time for me to take my leave. (A couple of A-holes in my humble opinion.)

All in all a ripping night. We had over a 100 people show, 2/3 of them were ladies (good call on the discount ticket, Dave!) Here's a few shots of the mania...

Mark Saito in action.
The crowd, with a few bald heads in the herd.
Like my new shirt?
Hitomi and her friend (whose name eludes me)
Sakhr from Yemen ("Yeah, Man"...a joke I make everytime I see him and it hasn't been funny yet!)
Dave & his bevy of babes.
I think he just beamed in for this tune.
Dave is becoming even more popular than me at these events!
Spinning me softly with his song.
How did Mark's bereted head get in this pic at that angle?
Dave's not the only one getting some action.
This is a former student from my Tokiwagi days, Sayuri.
Jason looks SO cool. Smoking!
It's Techno-girl, Eriko (who has an annoying habit of referring to me as "papa".
Shaft owner, Dom, poking his head in.
Taka attack!
The shaded guys are those shady Tokyo guys that I took a disliking to.
A trio of guys enjoying themselves (see...I don't only take pics of females!)
The Big Apple (boy, bet he's never heard that one before.)
Nori on the left...thanks SOOOO much for helping me set up my new computer, so I could make this post today!

See you all next month!


Juicy Fruits...

Of our labours. Tonight is another Echophonyk gig at Shaft and it promises to be a good one. Mark Saito is here from Tokyo to enlighten us with Computer-induced auditory enjoyment. There's some other guy from Tokyo named DJ John Wayyne (can't the guy spell?) who is apparently famous, though I've never heard of him. (But I've never heard of any DJ who is outside of my circle of friends!) DJs Mixture (organizer extraordinaire), Mokugohan (battling the flu to come down), J-Loop (Boop boop a doop), Taka (just to prove we're not all gaijin) will also be on hand to WOW us with tunes. I can't wait...

So come on down, it should be a blast!

(Tomorrow, I'll be good and sleepy, but I'm finally getting a new computer so I'll be able to blog to my heart's content. WooHoo...million times faster blogging!)


Happy Flag Day.

to our Southern Neighbours...


There Ain't no Kyuri for the Summertime Blues!

According to this article, Pepsi has been way behind in the Cola Wars, so they've brought out a new "Pepsi Ice Cucumber" which has "the refreshing taste of a fresh cucumber".
"We wanted a flavor that makes people think of keeping cool in the summer heat," spokesperson Takemoto said. "We thought the cucumber was just perfect."
For me, cucumbers don't evoke coolness, that'd be watermelon...mmmm Watermelon-Pepsi! I sampled a bottle today and gave some to a co-worker. He commented "尼イ!" (amai) which means sweet. I personally found it to be overly-sweet but tasteless. It does though have a cucumberish odour & a slight cucumberish aftertaste to it.

They like to eat their cucumbers (きゅうり=kyuri) here with mayo as a dip. Personally, I soak mine in vinegar overnight. I guess my tastebuds can't relish a sweet cucumber...I'm sweet enough as it is!


Weird Crap I'm watching in the wee hours on Japanese TV:

Occasionally my insomniacal ways force me to surf around the tube. I often get some real treats, such as the following...

I really can't find much info about this one in English. Suffice to say the good guys look like bees and have a phallic antenna upon their heads. The bad guys look like Captain Kangaroo. And we all thought the Teletubbies were strange.

チビラクンの卷 (chibira-kun no kan, 1968) Look it up yourself, maybe you'll have better luck, or check out this site: chibira.

Another Ultraman/ Kamen Rider clone from the mid 70's was:

バトルホーク (Battle Hawk from 1976)

Again, I couldn't find too much out. But there seems to be lots of stuff for sale via Ebay.

Good old Osamu Tezuka of Astroboy fame has come up with a winner in Princess Knight. Before I read the Wiki entry, I had no idea that the little guy was an angel, Choppy, in Mini-me mode. When nothing else is on, it runs nightly on the Cartoon Network's Boomerang segment.

More wacky shows as my sleeplessness continues...
Why Johnny Depp rocks!

I love everything this guy does and it's nice to see that he's as charming in person as he is on the screen (even when he's evil!) Just watch this one video and how polite he is to the bizarre little urchins careening around the stage! "WOW!"

If you want to see more, link away to see more Deppths of weirdness.
YouTubed again!

And you know how painful that can be. Way back in this post, was the St. Patrick's Day Parade (and another one) on April Fool's Day. Our very own DJ Mixture spun away, much to the enjoyment of the masses. His biggest fan filmed a snippet of his gig and once again downloaded it onto YouTube. Here it is in all it's glory:

I especially like the little jig danced by his onlooker at the end of the video!


Kudos to Donald Fauntleroy Duck.

Hey, today is Donald Duck's birthday. He made his debut in "The Wise Little Hen" way back in 1934. He was only a minor character but made a big splash. One of my favourite Disney creations, DD has always quacked me up.

I have all kinds of Mickey Mouse crap, but very little merchandise of DD collected over the years. This little stuffed ball is about all I have.

Here's one of my favourite Duck cartoons, and one you won't see on TV anytime soon...

Speaking of Ducks, kudos also are due to the former Mighty Ducks as they win their first ever Stanley Cup. 'Twas a fine battle by the Senators, but Anaheim proved too strong in their defense and yet were only a single goal ahead after 4 games! I suppose they decided not to prolong the agony and conquered Ottawa 6-2 in the 5th and final match. It wasn't the most dramatic finale, but it did the trick and once again a Canadian team is unable to win Lord Stanley's Cup. As much as I'd like to have seen Ottawa take it, comfort is gained by the Ducks roster, which is made up of more Canucks than any other NHL team.

Good news is that I won the pool with 92 points acquired thanks to choice of several Dans and a Teemu. As a final comment, thanks to the shoddy unsportsmanlike conduct of Pronger's two elbowing game misconducts and Alfredsson's slapshot to the back of Scott Niedermayer, I don't foresee them dating Lady Byng anytime in the near future.

Wait until next year, you better BE LEAF!


Long Bow Hunters.

On Monday, I had the privilege of attending 弓道 (Kyudo=Japanese Archery).

From Wiki, here's the Kyudo technique or the hassetsu (or "eight stages of shooting"). The hassetsu consists of the following steps:

1. Ashibumi, placing the footing. The archer steps on to the line from where arrows are fired (known as the shai) and turns to face the kamiza, so that the left side of his body faces the target. He then sights from the target to his feet and sets his feet apart so that the distance between them is equal to his yatsuka, approximately half his body height. A line drawn between the archer's toes should pass through the target after the completion of the ashibumi.
2. Dozukuri, forming the body. The archer verifies his balance and that his pelvis and the line between his shoulders are parallel to the line set up during ashibumi.
(a)Yugamae, readying the bow. Yugamae consists of three phases:
(b)Torikake, gripping of the bowstring with the right hand.
(c)Tenouchi, the left hand is positioned for shooting on the bow's grip.
3. Monomi, the archer turns his head to gaze at the target.
4. Uchiokoshi, raising the bow. The archer raises the bow above his head to prepare for the draw.
5. Hikiwake, drawing apart. The archer starts bringing down the bow while spreading his arms, simultaneously pushing the bow with his left hand and drawing the string with the right, until the arrow is level with his eyebrows.
6. Kai, the full draw. The archer continues the movement started in the previous phase, until he reaches full draw with the arrow placed slightly below his cheekbone. The arrow points along the line set up during ashibumi.
7. Hanare, the release. The bowstring is released from the right hand.
8. Zanshin, "the remaining body or mind" or "the continuation of the shot". The archer remains in the position reached after hanare while returning from the state of concentration associated with the shot.
(If you want definitions of the above, seek them out yourself. What am I a dictionary?)

Oh, and the title of this post refers to this. My favourite Green Arrow storyline and what got me hooked on Oliver again.


Attack #1!

アタック No. 1 was an manga/anime series back in the early 70's and began the boom of female anime series (少女 or shoujo), in this case, Volleyball. After the women's Volleyball team won the Gold in the '64 Olympic Games, everyone jumped on the bandwagon. Here is the official site of the recent live action adaptation.

Last Saturday, (while fighting a nasty head cold which has now developed to a mild case of Bronchitis), I attended a quarter-finals Volleyball tournament.


Bowling for Dolls.

A week ago, I went bowling with the gang from 305. Why, you may ask, would one hang out with this motley crew? Let the photos speak for themselves...

This last guy is one of the owners and a fun guy to boot. Incidently, my score that day was my worst to date! I barely broke a hundred in the first game!

Speaking of Dolls, June 3rd is "Memorial to Broken Dolls Day". A Buddhist observance when broken dolls are enshrined by a priest. That's the only detail I could dig up on the occurance.


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