Posts Tagged ‘Japan’

Apparently cats and game shows are a good match in Japan. Here you can watch cats work hard for the yen.

Conquering the world with discipline, politeness and Japan-ness.


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that I had to delay writing a long post.

Here is a zen approach.

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I am listening to (dangling preposition).

One of the most interesting buildings in Japan is the Nakagin Capsule Tower.

Here is an excerpt from Nicolai Ouroussof’s elegy in the NY Times about its encroaching demise – and this actually got me to thinking about something I was writing myself:

Yet for many of us who believe that the way we treat our cultural patrimony is a fair measure of how enlightened we are as a society, the building’s demolition would be a bitter loss. The Capsule Tower is not only gorgeous architecture; like all great buildings, it is the crystallization of a far-reaching cultural ideal. Its existence also stands as a powerful reminder of paths not taken, of the possibility of worlds shaped by different sets of values.

Of course this article calls to mind the recent debacle in Reykjavík about the old houses on Laugavegur and in the surrounding areas. For those of you not in the know, our former mayor the depressed medical doctor Ólafur Magnússon bought a bunch of old houses for quite a sum. He sure does have brass balls and I do laud his decision, I mean they were going to tear down cool buildings and that was a no no. For more information about the Reykjavík issue, read the Morgunblaðið this weekend. Maybe someday I might translate it.

This is pretty much like living in a white Death Star, at least from in the inside. Makes you wonder if Darth Vader had a VIP room.

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Recently I read a book called Toyko: A Certain Style. I was not sure what to expect as I just picked it up in the bookstore. After reading it I was struck by how much I want to move to Japan. The Amazon review has this to say:

It’s common for Americans to stereotype the Japanese as conformist, rigidly organized, and immaculately tidy, but with Tokyo: A Certain Style Kyoichi Tsuzuki makes remarkable progress toward broadening those impressions. Tsuzuki photographed the very lived-in interiors of numerous Tokyo houses and apartments, and then jammed his piles of pictures into the format of a short-of-stature book.

However, this short stub from the review does not do justice to the book. This book will make you laugh, cringe, roll your eyes and bring to your tear ducts.

Take for example this apartment ( of course I am not implying any expertise in domestic aesthetics but this apartment is on the minimalistic side).

Most apartments in the book tend to look like the photo below – not messy but often we have artists, university lecturers, musicians and other people who utilize their living space to its uttermost limits; whether it be art, books, records, stereo equipment and junk.

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