Archive for February, 2006

Can’t cleaning syndrome

Room_2I love cleaning up. Actually I can’t be relaxed in a messy place, but in a crowded place too. So my room has a few things like a hotel room. My friends say I have a cleaning phobia, and they think that I should be more relaxed :-). The opposite of my case, there are people who can’t clean up. A few years ago, a book was published and it was much-discussed, its title was "Katazukerarenai Onnatachi" (women who can’t clean up). This site wrote about it with an interesting TV show… wow can you believe that? That would be an outstanding case though, I can find many sites saying "I am a woman with can’t clean syndrome" from just messy levels to heavy ones, no place to live like this, this and this. Yes they were called "Can’t clean syndrome" in Japan before, but now people know it will be related to ADHD (can’t concentrate, very unstable.) in some case. And there are some companies which have cleaning services for such houses and rooms.

Then as a similar topic, we have "GOMI YASHIKI". It means garbage place surrounded by the garbage the inhabitant collected, like this, this, this. I found an article where the BBC said this would be related to OCD. Well even though we know it would be a disorder, such houses disfigure the appearance of the streets, cause bad smells, are in danger of collapsing etc. They just give their neighbours the creeps and cause a nuisance. But as long as he keeps things inside his place, it is hard to stop him collecting it or saying please try to have some therapy for OCD. People are compelled to accept in many cases, I heard. But finally Fukushima pref, Yokohama city have a measure to prohibit taking back things from the rubbish tip. How do you deal with in such cases in your country?

Tokyo Show Windows

Tokyo Show Window: a website with massive collection of photographs of show windows around Tokyo, by Japan Design Net. Covers most of the famous boutiques in the city.

Japan Media Arts Festival

Interested in Media Arts ? Anime fan ? Manga freak ?
Visit here :)

2005 [9th] Japan Media Arts Festival | Festival Information | JAPAN MEDIA ARTS PLAZA

Spring? but still a bit freezing

Originally uploaded by lhuga.

It was yesterday’s morning, I noticed spring is coming here. I think this is flower of plum.(梅の花)
I will be able to show you beautiful cherry blossoms about one month later :)

My first entry….. living in Tokyo with three boys…

This is my first blog here on Metroblogging Tokyo…..
What`s new in my life…. I just moved into a new place with three boys.
How did I meet them… I actually met them through internet community.
It is very unsual to have sweetmates here in Japan, but as I have lived abroad
for many years, it is not a big concern to me.
I mean living with three males and I am the only girl in the house, it is quie scandarous
for many people….. of course, my family was little worried, but what can they do!!!
I already decided. As I have a very important person back in the States, all guys are
just friends, so …… from my part, it`s not a big concern… but what would they think….
let me see how it goes…. it would be interesting !!!!

Little about my new sweetmates….

My sweetmate one…. he is same age as me… 23, and a salariman. Though he is also a dancer, so we have a lot of things in common^^ He has introduced to me his circle of dancer friends, and has been most approachable so far.

My sweetmate two… he is still a student, learning about silver jwelly. He seems rather quiet, but is curious about me…. started to talk to me little by little.

My roommate three…. he is the oldest in the house, and works in Japanese movie industry. He has a deadline soon, so has been working till late at night, making tons of noises, so he keeps wake me up….

So far there has been no prob…. just that this house does not have very good sound proof system, so I often get waken up….

Ok, perhaps you can get right direction

Underground of Tokyo station is very complicated, unless you know exact exit, you would be lost, absolutely !
Yes, I was lost before, dear me…
QR code offers you the information around there.

In Japan, these days QR code became popular than last year.
Many websites offer their mobile sites with QR code, and you will see advertisements in a train also place QR code on.
But, it is a bit weird using your mobile phone’s camera in a train, isn’t it ? At least I can’t do in the packed train !!

Ueno Zoo

I was all over the place on Saturday. Before the art exhibits, I went to the zoo in Ueno for a little bit of nastalgia and – I’ll admit – because cute animals make awesome date scenery.

The zoo is located around Shinobazu Pond (不忍池). I’m sure there’s a better way to get to it, but we went out the Shinobazu exit at Ueno station and headed right. Just follow the people. There are ample maps around as well to help you out.

The price of entry is 600 yen, but bring a little more (I had only 800 yen total). We were both hungry, and the fact that every place seems to sell crepes, ice cream and pizza did not make things easier.

There’s a path around the zoo so you can be sure to hit everything, and also a monorail that links the East and West parts of the park. The West side has what appeared to be a petting zoo. I saw kids touching animals, so I assume that’s what it was, anyway. It was inside the kids zoo, and we didn’t hang out there too long because of all the young’uns bumping into us and running (literally) underfoot.

If you don’t want to take the monorail, like me because I had no money to do so, you can walk to the West side. It takes a few extra minutes, but you get a nice shot of the pond because the East side is maybe 10 meters higher than the West side. The West side is also host to an insect and creepy-crawly exhibit, which we didn’t go to. I’m deathly afraid of spiders and other such animals, but if that’s your thing I’m sure there’s plenty of them over there.

I took pictures of a bunch of the animals there, but I only put maybe 6 or so on my flickr page. You’ll find the usual fare at the zoo – lions, tigers, monkeys, birds – lots of the damn things, among others. I was fortunate enough to see the back of a panda’s ass for 3 minutes until the big guy stood up (Oohs and Ahhs from the crowd) to summarily empty his bowels and fall asleep (“Dammit” from me). Maybe future zoo-goers will have better luck.

“New Photographs” in Nishi-Shinjuku

After the relationship success of last week’s trip to an art exhibit (“Aces, you’re so multi-dimensional!”) in Ginza, I decided to follow it up with an excursion to Nishi-Shinjuku to take in James Welling’s “New Photographs.” You already know my penchant for shiny and colorful things, so it’s not surprising I chose to see the bright primary colors-heavy artwork.

The interesting thing about the photos on display was that they were made without the use of a camera. Welling places flowers on negatives and exposes them to light, giving a gray-scale imprint of the flowers on film. Then he prints it and applies a single color or two to the image. The results are pretty amazing and quite stunning, at least to this art-viewing newbie.

You can catch his work until February 25th at the Wako Works of Art building in Nishi-Shinjuku. The easiest way to get there I found was to exit Hatsudai station from the East Exit, which gets you directly into the Opera City Building. From the building’s main entrance, it’s about a 500m walk. The receptionist should be able to help you find your way, and if not you can call the number at the TAB page.

A bonus of making that trip was that right next door at the Kenji Taki Gallery was an exhibit of some very fine paintings. Now, I have to be honest – I’m not sure if they were paintings or photos converted to look like paintings and printed as such. They were photorealistic drawings from Yutaka Koyanagi, all done at night of various places in and around Tokyo it seems. The day I went was the last day, and I didn’t see it advertised on TAB, so it was a welcome surprise. If you stood next to the paintings you could clearly see the extensive use of gradients to imitate shades and details, but when you stepped away it looked just like a photo. Lighting and water effects were great too. I’m amazed at how he was able to paint so close to the canvas, but somehow know what it would look like 5 feet away.

I didn’t take any photos out of respect for the artist, who I believe was 10 feet away from me (someone was getting their photo taken when I walked in). The exhibit that’s there now seems really fun – I didn’t see the artwork, but there was a postcard for it when I arrived that shows a painting of a desert with Ultraman characters floating or playing on a playground.

Nintendo DS + Opera browser

Giving gamers two windows to the Web: The Opera Browser for Nintendo DS™

Whoopee !!
This is very happy news for people like me, always being with lovely DS.
Nintendo also announced about a card which makes your DS into telly.

Here is a link to Nintendo Conference website.
It is written by Japanese, but at least you can see some diagrams about new games and ‘Nintendo DS Lite’
ニンテンドーDS Conference(カンファレンス)! 2006.春

Running in Tokyo

I like to fashion myself as an avid runner, though the truth is the Tokyo winter has been less than kind this year, and waking up at 5:45 in the morning for me is a Herculean task. On some days the temperature dips below 0 with wind chill, and that’s as strong an argument as my lazy ass needs to stay inside by the space heater.

I live near Nerima, so the best places to run are Shakuji-koen, Hikarigaoka-koen and some of the parks in Wako-shi. They’re all easily identified on any map of Tokyo simply by virtue of the green blobs representing them. Green is quite rare on Tokyo maps.

shakuji sunsetShakuji-koen has a nice ~1.75km loop around the main section of the lake, as well as a wooded area on one side of the lake (inside the main loop) that is about 700m each way. 6 laps around the lake would be a bit over 10k for anybody wanting to put in some distance in their free time, and the scenery is gorgeous all year around.

If you aren’t afraid to take a walk across the street, halfway around the lake you can head towards Tanashi and Hoya, where a couple more parks await about 5km or so away. For those who don’t mind running on main roads, there’s a long stretch from Ogikubo on the Ome-kaido road, and parallel to that, Inokashira-dori, which lead to Shinjuku and thereabouts.

hikarigaoka3_1The park at Hikarigaoka used to be a US base, so it’s a very clean, expansive and well-designed park. It’s mostly flat on the running surface, but there are hilly fields where families and friends hang out every day of the year, as well as near-weekly festivals and open market events. The track is 400 meters, and there is a larger jogging course that extends to about 2.9km, marked both on the ground and with signs so you don’t get lost. A baseball diamond is situated by the track.

If anybody is interested in running events in Japan, two great websites are Sports Entry and Runnet. Unfortunately they both are written in Japanese, so it might be difficult to navigate for some people. I don’t know of any English web sites that have as extensive a list of upcoming events as either of those two, but if you do just let me know in the comments. If you need help with the sites, you can email me.

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