2007-01-31

Even Godzilla's getting into the act.


One of the few times where Godzilla lost a match. He knows better than to mock the sanctity of NGSD!
Sergio Aragones of MAD fame knows the importance of NGSD.
So does Mike Peters of Mother Goose and Grimm fame. (More cartoons at: MG&G)



So why don't you put on your costume?
Gorilla my dreams.








Well, it's finally here, so break your Gorilla Suit out of the mothballs, put it on and go on a walkabout. Unfortunately, today is the day when all these Junior High kids take the entrance exam in order to enter our hallowed walls of learning, so my vice-principal won't let me wear my Gorilla Suit to school. But as soon as I get home, I'll go door-to-door frightening the neighbours.

Go for it, you know you want to...Go APE!

2007-01-30

What 1953 Film Noir was Marilyn in?

I needed an excuse to post more photos, so get those scrolling fingers ready, here come some more boring pictures!























The answer is "Niagara."
DA DA DA DAAA DAAA DAAA DA!

YOU ARE SPIDERMAN!!

You are intelligent, witty,
a bit geeky and have great
power and responsibility.







Click here to take the Superhero Personality Test

Happy Birthday to Yuko and Mera(!)

Yuko Saito, spouse of DJ Mark Saito, celebrates her birthday today. But so does Mera (Aquaman's wife)...hmmmmm. Could there be a connection? They both like deep sea diving, they like to talk to fish and I've never seen them in the same room together! That's it-Yuko IS Mera. Yes, you heard it here first!

And if you need any bigger clue, does not this picture of Aqualad look a lot like her husband, Mark? (But marrying Aqualad...Ewww!)

2007-01-29

The Battle of Stoney Creek...

was a battle fought on June 6, 1813, during the War of 1812 near Stoney Creek, Ontario. British units made a night attack on an American encampment. Although the British were repulsed, the American force subsequently withdrew. This battle is re-enacted annually by American and Canadian "troops" in June.

I went to Stoney Creek to visit an old high school buddy. These shots were taken from his mom's condo. I didn't go to any re-enactment of any battles, but we did leave a few dead soldiers behind (also known as emptied beer bottles.)

Phil is a physicist turned folk musician. If you want to hear some of his stuff, check out: Pip





If you squint real hard, you can see the CN tower in Toronto. (Click on the picture to enlarge it.)
Sloooowly I turned...

As all Stoogeophiles know, this is the line from a Stooges' sketch uttered by Moe & Larry, who upon hearing the term "Niagara Falls" are triggered into a berserker rage against the beleaguered Curly. I went there late last December and I must admit that I did not succomb to the frenzy. It was a cold rainy day and I wandered around for an hour or two and I enjoyed it immensely. I'm not one for doing the sightseeing gig solo (I desperately need human interaction in order to make sarcastic comments or to mutter snide remarks about the locals), but here I was in the Honeymoon capital, taking in the sights. I was undergoing some JTs (like DTs, only you need a fix of Japanese, not booze) so I managed to smugly refrain, "どうぞ douzo" to a couple wanting to exit the souvenir shop as I held the door for them and I took a photo of two giggly teeny-boppers who I offered, "一緒で isshou de" in order to snap them together. I got my dose of Japanese and I made some Nipponese-types happy to hear their language.

So here are some photos of Niagara Falls. They look the same as any other photos of Niagara you've ever seen, but what do you want for nothing? (Rubber Biscuit?)




















And in case you were thought I was kidding about the Pavlovian effect "Niagara Falls" has on people, check this out:
James Brown...Sex Machine.

I was back in Canada during the demise of James, so I didn't really comment on his 6-foot under retirement. I was in Niagara and noted that he was due to play Casino-Niagara on New Year's and I was thinking how cool it would be to see him live. Now, it would just be cool to see him alive.

Over the years and via 4 marriages and an unknown amount of liaisons, he had 5 sons, three daughters, eight grandchildren and four great-grandchildren on record.

So, here is the Hardest-Working Man in Show Business, the Godfather of Soul performing this post's title track.



Now why am I bringing up James Brown a month after his death? Well, because there's a new term out there, coined by Japan's 71-year-old health minister Hakuo Yanagisawa, who called Japanese women "birth-giving machines" and called on them to "do their best per head."

"The number of women aged between 15 and 50 is fixed. Because the number of birth-giving machines and devices is fixed, all we can ask for is for them to do their best per head, although it may not be so appropriate to call them machines."

At least he was good enough to admit that calling women "machines" may not be appropriate. I'm trying to do my part to enlist women into their machine-role, but so far I can't even get a date.

2007-01-26

A blast from the past.

I just came across this song that I'd written way back in my NOVA days in Tokyo. It applies to pretty much any cram school in the country. Enjoy...

Sung to the tune of: "Where Have All The Flowers Gone."
Where have all the flowers gone?
To window sideboxes.
Where has all the O2 gone?
It's become smog.
Where have all the lush parks gone?
They're closed on Mondays.
What about contagions?
Oh, just go and wear a mask.
Where have all the children gone?
To "Hello Kitty Land".
Where do they go to run and play?
In malls, of course.
When do they throw temper tantrums?
Whenever they feel like it.
When are they disciplined?
Never, for that's the school's job.
Where do all young lovers go?
Gone to Shibuya.
Where do they go to make out?
To Shinjuku.
Who are their movie idols?
J. Roberts, Brad-o Pitt-o.
Where are they afterwards?
Back home to study.
Where have all the housewives gone?
Gone to shopping.
In the malls, where do they go?
To buy clothes.
After work where do they go?
Home to cook and clean.
When do they ever bitch,
At Nova lessons, of course.
Where have all the husbands gone?
Gone to Pachinko.
On the weekends, where are they?
On the golf course.
After that, where do they go?
Off to love hotels, they go.
When do they ever sleep?
Well, that's what's the trains are for.
Where do Nova women go?
Off to Rappongi.
Where do Nova fellows go?
To go buy toys.
Where do Nova teachers sing?
At Karaoke.
When do they ever drink?
Whene'er and whereever.

2007-01-25

My deepest darkest secrets...

are finally ready for you to ponder, as I have updated my profile. (Big Deal)
Get your paws on me, you damn stinking human.

Bape, A Bathing Ape is a clothing line worn by trendsetters and though not officially associated with NGSD, I'd like to see it as an affiliate. Set your wayback machine to 1993 in Harajuku when designer, Nigo, began a line of clothes featuring the ape heads (primarily Cornelius) from Planet of the Apes on t-shirts. Jump forward to today and you'll find that they've blossomed into one of the largest manufacturers of hip gear.

Bape originally sold exclusively at company-owned Busy Works Shops and focused mostly on men's apparel like T-shirts and hoodies, but has now created Bathing Ape brands to cater to women and children. The women's lines, Apee and Bapy, is usually sold in Busy Works/Bape stores, or have stores next door. Bape Kids, the children's line, has its own store in Tokyo. A Bathing Ape has even extended beyond clothing to a hair salon (Bape Cuts), gallery (Bape Gallery), cafe (Bape Cafe), record label (Ape Sounds) and (B)apeTV. Check out their website at: Bape


Accept no substitutes! There are plenty of knock-off Bape wannabes that market their gear to the hip hop crowd, but don't fall for these posers (Fake-ape or Fapes). "To ape" may mean "to imitate" but in this case, it's just not cool.

If we can only convince the Bape guys to forego the t-shirts and go full on into providing rad-gorilla costumes, then everyone will be willing to participate in National Gorilla Suit Day. Ahhh, one can dream.
Arargh! Oot! Greet!







As everyone knows, these are the various sounds a gorilla makes. At least the gorillas in Don Martin cartoons. Since January 31st is just around the corner, it's time to remind everyone about National Gorilla Suit Day. It's your patriotic duty as my blog reader to don your Gorilla suit and go door-to-door greeting the neighbours.
For more information about the event you can always go to this link:
Evanier
For more information about the various sound effects that Don Martin creations have made, go to this site: Mad

Now I'd like to feature a few of my favourite gorillas.

This is Bettie Page getting it on with a NGSD patriot.
















Another lovely propaganda pic from the 40's encouraging young men to prevent NGSD from catching on in Japan...Good thing they weren't successful.














Like every great holiday, NGSD does come with its tragedies.







And finally this was my intended costume for NGSD. I won it via UFO Catcher last summer when Japan was in the throes of King Kong fever. Unfortunately, it wasn't until I got it home to discover that it isn't a mask, but rather a stuffed Kong head. I've considered hollowing it out, but that would besmirch the good name of the holiday in question. Now where am I going to find a gorilla costume in a week?
ハッピーロッビーバーンズデー

Speaking of poetry, today is Robbie Burns' Day, so everyone raise a pint to the lassies or the laddies, drink to their health and eat some haggis!

Here's a poem for you to recite before you chow down on your sheep innards.

Some hae meat and canna eat,
And some would eat that want it;
But we hae meat, and we can eat,
And sae the Lord be thankit.

(hae = have; canna = cannot; sae = say; thankit = thanked)

Robert Burns of course wrote Auld Lang Syne and the first verse of that tune goes like this:

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and auld lang syne?

(Auld = old)

The Japanese have adopted that tune and used it for a song about fireflies, 蛍の光.Hotaru no Hikari

hotaru no hikari, mado no yuki. Light of fireflies, snow by the window,
fumi yomu tsukihi, kasane tsutsu. Many suns and moons spent reading
itsushika toshi mo, sugi no towo. Years have gone by without notice
aketezo kesa ha, wakare yuku. Day has dawned; this morning, we part.

Rather than being sung on New Year's Eve though, this tune is mostly associated with graduation ceremonies. According to folklore, students used the light of fireflies and the reflection of moonlight on snow as light sources when they wanted to study at night. Therefore, the first verse is used to indicate the diligence of the graduating students. (Not my students though!)

These days, one can hear an instrumental version of this song blaring out over loud speakers as a Supermarket, Pachinko or Game Center is closing. Once that tune begins, wrap up your shopping, plink your last ball or finish taking your Print Club (プリクラ), because you're going to be kicked out in a few minutes!
Waxing poetic.

I think of a poem
As I walk through the forest
It's a haiku.

俳句 (pronounced ha-i-ku); ハイク= hike (pronounced ha-i-ku)

Here's a Japanese version:
詩を作り
森を歩いて
俳句です (ハイクです)

2007-01-24

Let's give a big hand (or two or three) to...

2007-01-21

As Murtaugh might say...

"I'm gettin' too old for this shit." I'd gone drinking the last two nights and it's taking me longer to recover than I used to. It was fun but I think I need to reassess my life. The drinking isn't great for my health, it's getting too expensive to keep doing this and I'm not meeting that girl of my dreams. So I think I'm going to chuck this entire booze-hound lifestyle and go on the wagon. (Last time I said this, I think I lasted about 10 days. Let's see how long this vow lasts.)


But here are a few pics from Friday. Alex and I took Akari out for her birthday (belated by one week) and Alex didn't show up for a couple of hours, leaving me to entertain her on my lonesome.





Alex eventually did show up with his hockey team in tow. I've never seen Ernie's bar so packed, nor had I seen Ernie so frazzled.





This guy, whose name eludes me, (maybe Yuki) is a sweetheart who DJ Mixture has enrolled in his quest to advertise everything Echophonyk. He had the guy out flogging flyers in the cold. What a trooper! (The following evening we potentially got him laid, so Karma saves the day! Hey, the American chick was looking for a cute Japanese boy to shack up with for the night, so we recommended our lackey. Win-win situation!) At least someone's getting lucky.




And of course, one of the Snots infrequent players is none other than Blaise of Monkey Majik fame. He graced the bar with his presence and continued getting shit-faced while also getting propositioned by every female (and maybe a few males) in the place.


A good time was had by all and Akari really appreciated her time out with us. Alas Alex was too hungover the next day to go to the stupidly-named Double Birthday Bash, but that's a story for another post.

2007-01-20

Fuk u fuji.

Oh, sorry I had the spacing on that wrong. Fukufuji, Yutaka is the goaltender for the LA Kings and is the first Japanese-born player in the NHL. He's had a rather ignomonious beginning, starting in his first game in the 3rd period after the regular goalie was injured. He lost that game 6-5. He was the starting goalie in his next game and let in 3 goals in the first two periods before he was yanked. They went on to lose that game 6-3 and he was credited with that loss too. In his latest game, he stopped 17/18 shots but his team still lost yet this time he was not credited with either a win or a loss.

So not much of a showing yet, but his parents and hometown are extremely proud of their boy. Perhaps if he weren't on one of the worst teams in the league, he could shine more, but for now their Rising Son is doing pretty well.

2007-01-18

Pika-Pika,ne! ぴかぴか、ね

Ahhh the shiny, glittery lights of Tokyo in all her glory. I just took this picture from the top of the Roppongi Mori building in Roppongi Hills, Tokyo. (Actually I just stole this pic off the Net from a guy who took this picture from the top of the Roppongi Mori building in Roppongi Hills, Tokyo.)


This is a cool sculpture of a spider outside that building in the park. Creepy!


But I was in Roppongi Hills last week to eat with DJ Mark Saito and Yuko. We ate at an Okinawan restaurant and we indulged in a few tasty morsels. (This pic is of a 獅子 Shi-sa-, an Okinawan good luck charm to ward off demons.)





One of the fishies we ate had its crispy little head still attached and here I am crunching away at it.

Later that night, Mark played a jamming set of Reggae tunes at one of his local bars. He was grossly overshadowed by the other more experienced Reggae aficionados, but he cranked out a ripping set regardless.

In between dinner and jamming, I remained behind and saw a movie. I got to see "Letters from Iwo Jima" with English subtitles. Roppongi Hills carries the only subtitled version in Japan and there is only one show per day. (It still wasn't packed but was comfortably full.)

I see that Letters won the Golden Globe for best picture and it certainly deserves this honour. Clint captured the angst and spirit of the Japanese soldiers gloriously and it's hard to believe that he also directed the saccharine "Flags of Our Fathers".


If the Japanese decide to retain the kanji for their movie, (硫黄島からの手紙) they had better change it for their Chinese neighbours. The kanji for Iou Jima is "Sulphur Island" and for 手紙 (te-gami) is "Toilet Paper". So the movie title in China would be "Toilet Paper from Sulphur Island". Come to think of it that title stinks on many levels!

You can see a trailer in Japanese here:
http://wwws.warnerbros.co.jp/iwojima-movies/trailer/letters_large.html

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