Ladies Night At Shaft.

Formally, it wasn't Ladies' Night, but of the 101 people who partook, those of the feminine persuasion were the major focus of the pictures I took last Friday. Without further ado, here are the lovely ladies that I personally encountered:

First up a medley of Michiko & Ayano, my favourite duet.

Dita, the best looking DJ in the history of Echophonyk. (Sorry Mokugohan, Mixture et al. You just can't compete.)

This is Naomi, a former music teacher from my former school making her Shaft debut in the company of her friend, Eri.

Miscellaneous maidens. (Play "Where's Waldo" & try to find Mrs. Mixture!)

Finally, here is Sleeping Beauty and her narcoleptic suitor. I love the swirling cigarette smoke in this picture.

Be sure to click on the pics to view the photos in an enlarged state...

By the way, the Maple Leaf cookies were a big hit. And much to my surprise, KitKat came through with a new flavour early Friday morning. My boss welcomed me to work with a package of フランスロレーヌ塩 (French Lorraine Salt-flavoured) which tasted of white chocolate with a whiff of salt. Only my special friends received these, everyone else got cookies.

Coming soon, will be podcasts of the event and hopefully a video of me dancing up a storm at 4 in the morning!


Happy Semi-Birthday To Me!

As I mentioned in a previous post, Michaelmas or St. Michael's Day is my secondary birthday. As I approach my 50th (or is it 100th, since I get 2 birthdays every year?), I wonder...will I be handsome, will I be rich, will I have rainbows day after day? Que Sera Sera...

But let's talk about September 29th, it's...
The Day of St. Michael is the Day of the early mass, the day of the sacrificial lamb, the day of the oblation struan (a cake made of all the farm's cereals,) the day of the distribution of the lamb, the day of the distribution of the struan, the day of the pilgrimage to the burial ground of their forefathers, the day of the burial ground service, the day of giving and receiving the carrots with their wishing and acknowledgements, and the day of the oda -- the athletics of the men and the racing of the horses. The Night of Michael is the night of the dance and the song, of the merry-making, of the lovemaking, and of the love gifts. Taken from "House Shadow Drake"

Alas, I have neither dance nor song, merry-making nor lovemaking to look forward to this evening. I did get a love gift this morning though. I got propositioned by a Russian damsel over the internet who is moving to Japan and "I want to share my life with good man because I'm also full of love and tenderness, I know that I am not so beautiful like Hollywood Princess but I do hope to meet my Prince and I am sure he will be not be disappointed to meet me in the real life! This is why I am going to go through the same way."

Boy, it's not bad enough that I get local stalkers, now they're seeking me out internationally! Happy Birthday, indeed!

ps. I think I'll check for an Adam's Apple scar before I take her up on her offer.


Why, You Crazy - The Fall'll Probably Kill Ya!

Before everyone else jumps on the bandwagon of praising Mr. ポール・ニューマン, I wanna cut the line and be amongst the first to do so. Some of the characters' names he's played that I recall without looking up are Hud, Butch Cassidy, Fast Eddie Felson, Reg Dunlop, Luke, & John Rooney (I remember this name, because I just finished the graphic novel, Road to Perdition).

Movies that he's done from the top of my head include: Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Hudsucker Proxy, The Sting of course, The Verdict, Harper, & Towering Inferno. If I check his imbd, I'm sure I can remember more. I just checked, there are more I've seen but I just realized he was in Cars which I never did see.

The only movies of his that I currently own are スラップショット in which he swears incessantly and plays hockey.

暴力脱獄 which I watch every few years and is another of those movies that, though I own it, when it crops up on TV, I'll start watching it.

And Where the Money Is which I have on VHS because it also has my friend, Dorothy Gordon in it. I've known DJ (her stage name is Dorothy Gordon, I know her as Dorothy Jones) since the early 80's when we worked together in a marketing firm. I moved on to my Social Work gigs and she retired from interviewing mooks in the mall and re-entered her 63-year Acting career after a 14-year absence. We would meet a few times a year (usually on equinoxes & solstices) and one of the first topics we'd speak of would be "Did you know SUCHnSUCH who just died?" and we'd listen to her personal anecdotes of the individual. I had just moved to Japan when she completed filming on her Paul Newman flick so I wish she were here right now to relay another of her anecdotes to me.

My only other personal anecdote I have of him is a tale regaled by my sister-in-law's sister. Nancy was on her lunch break and was picking up an ice cream cone for dessert when, whom did she espy behind in the lineup, but you know who. She picked up her jaw from the floor, paid for her cone and was ready to leave when Mr. Newman interrupted her and asked her why she had put her cone in her purse!

A funny guy and a true humanitarian, you'll be missed.


It's That Time Again!

Time for some more KitKat news. I've been delaying this for a week, hoping yet another flavour would rear its tasty head, but I can hold my tongue no longer, KitKat has gone all A-Flurry and the proof is in the Pudding!

Another reason I've delayed talking about KitKat is since a commenter on this post named Mark, who is undoubtedly by Big Brother poo-pooed my obsession. I felt I had to have a break (Have a KitKat! Doh. I can't stop!) from the wafer biz. In that thar link, I mentioned a frozen McFlurry ice-cream treat and now Nestle has gone further with an actual McFlurry-flavoured Chocolate Bar. It certainly tasted better than McDonalds' cup of goo.

Far more yummy was a キャラメルプリン (Caramel Purin=Pudding) which has a funky Halloween cover with little bats & ghosts & witch's hats as well as a Jack-'o-Lantern proclaiming that KitKat can be eaten anytime for good luck. (As an aside to brother Mark, don't worry, I'm not pigging out on these wafery goodies, I have one to taste-test and then I give the rest away to co-workers & students. I have actually lost weight of late!)

It's also time again for Echophonyk by the way & I hope you all come out tomorrow night.

Unless a new flavour of KitKat comes out before tomorrow night, I don't have any to give to my loyal readership. But what I do have is a bag of Maple Leaf Cookies that are left over from my Bridge club the other day. I bought 2 bags, not knowing how many members there would be. I brought the cookies as a treat (bribe) for welcoming me into the club. What this means is that I now have plenty of Biscuits to give away to anyone who mentions this blog (and for all the hot chicks I meet!)


A Bridge Too Far.

Last Sunday was an International World Festa event at the International Centre. There were several booths set up, represented by several different countries.

I looked around a bit and sampled some delectable fare for lunch including some so-so Indian Curry & some great ribs from Montana, an American style restaurant (022-376-6444) and an African beer called Tusker.

I chatted with an acquaintance and frequent attendee at Echophonyk, Akiko (I think that's her name.) I hope to see her on Friday and I hope to see YOU as well!

I witnessed a fashion show of feraners in kimono. There were several other displays, but I didn't stick around for I had to get back to my long-lost and recently regained obsession, BRIDGE! I played for about 6 hours on Sunday and since yesterday was a holiday, I managed to get in another 6 hours of trumping and finessing. (My partner & I came 3rd out of 7, not bad for a 9-year absence from the game!)

Anybody else who wants to partake in this game of Sultans & Kings, check out Sendai Bridge Club.

If you wade through till about 2:40, you can watch Chico & Harpo play bridge in Animal Crackers, one of my all-time favourite bits of theirs.


Soul Addiction, Spiral & Frustration, et al.

I spent the first three hours of Sundays festivities unaccompanied & unhindered by companions, so I was able to view several groups that others may not have enjoyed.

I bumped into this young singer later in the day and when I complicated her on her voice, she almost doubled over in surprise and embarrassment.

I sat for an hour in this spot behind the Blues bands and observed several groups, and I must have heard Sweet Home Chicago about 5 times throughout the weekend.

Being strung along, was a very cool Bluegrass quintet.

Everytime I walked by this particular corner, there was a different group of younguns playing strings. Everything from Bluegrass to Rockabilly to C&W. I never stuck around for long, but was always impressed.

Some saxy girls in kimono!

The ever-adorable Michiko joined me in time to witness...

...Frustration starring a completely different Michiko, a former co-worker at Seiwa.

I also saw her last year in a smaller venue. She has this deep sultry Joplin-esque voice and should definitely cut a cd. (I offered to set her up with our sound guy, she wasn't interested. Go figure.)

We wandered up and down Jozenji Dori again eyeballing the arty-farty booths, only this time I picked up some goodies.

I got a couple of bizarre postcards that maybe I'll send to someone someday.

I treated some aspiring artist to a 100 yen when I picked up their self-published manga. A little amateurish, but it has potential.

I won this cd in a draw. It is pure pop-trash, but it is unique because it is sung by a Rakuten Eagles player. The cd is called, "スライダー" (Slider) and it has quickly slid to the bottom of my playlist.

I saw a couple of cute mutts and their dogs.

This unfortunate canine and its sibling are all the rage in Sendai. Their old fart owner enjoys dressing them up in humiliating outfits and parading them around these festivals for onlookers to scream "カワイイ" and take pictures. I personally loathe the guy and the way he treats his dogs as living dolls. Though I loathe the people who find their antics cute even more.

Cute & Coy. (Michiko, not me!)

We head back to the Blues venue in time to see Soul Addiction (I think??), whom we also saw last year and I also saw long ago.

Their show would not be complete without Smoke on the Water.

After that, Michiko & I went to Mediatheque to see another friend, Eri of Spiral. I've seen her several times before and may see her at an upcoming event as well.

Best legs of the weekend.

She started off with Sade's Kiss of Life, moved on to Mon Cherie d'Amour, a Bossa Nova version of Stairway to Heaven, a Japanese standard called, はなみずき, a far superior version of Smoke on the Water and ended with My Favourite Things.

Somehow we hooked up with Dave & Miwa and grabbed a beer at Shaft. They had a pretty good DJ playing and a fairly lousy live band. We decided to cut out and head to Karaoke.

Michiko & Miwa trying not to cringe at Dave's rendition of Bowie.

Dave & Miwa singing a duet. It's always touching to see them so close.

My final song of the evening, Stray Cat Strut, before I strut off to catch the last bus.

An excellent weekend all around! Thanks to all those who entertained me and to those of my friends whom I pretended to entertain!


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