Monday, July 27, 2009

Yebisu Garden Place

Ebisu is pretty and kinda swishy and richy-rich. There are lots of embassies nearby. At Yebisu Garden Place, there are a few cool things to do. The Photography Museum is here, too. And there's a beer museum. I haven't been there, but my brother says it's boring. But the smoothies at the shop between the museums are good.

I went to the cinema there and saw The Visitor, (扉をたたく人 in Japanese), which came out in 2007 but whose lead actor, Richard Jenkins, was nominated for the best male actor Oscar in 2009. It's fiction, and talks about immigrants and the recent changes to immigration and foreign policy, especially pertaining to treatment of Middle Easterners. The movie uses a personal story to skillfully illustrate the mess of contradictions that is the U.S. in all its utter beauty and atrociousness.

Looking at the cinema's upcoming lineup, it seems like they have a good handful of carefully selected flicks that won't be showing at your local Warner Mycal.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

I prefer escalators to elevators. The openness, the slowness, the watching the world go by. If I'm not in a rush, I'll ride up to the top of a seven story department store, floor by floor. I'm not a claustrophobe; I just like escalators, which my brother was afraid of as a kid and called "alligators". "No! No~~~~oooo~~~! Don't make me ride the alligator!" through his alligator tears.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Bar Gari Gari

Ikenoue 池ノ上 is a sleepy little station just a few stations from Shibuya and only one stop from Shimokitazawa. My friend Uleshka used to live there, before she moved back to Germany with her new baby. I knew where it was when a friend asked me to come out to a noise show there.

This event is held regularly, is full of British noise enthusiasts, and is only 500 yen.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


My day off was unexpectedly hot. I took Dear Brother and Princess J to the bus station to catch their ride to the airport and thought, "I'm up early. It's hot. It would be nice to go to the beach!"

So I went to the beach. Where there are lots of tonbi, aggressive black kites that swoop on your food. Scarier than seagulls. Huge things.
Yuigahama (由比ケ浜) is just down the way from Enoshima, but isn't nearly as dirty. It's less crowded, and it's a nice place to just sit and listen to music and read. Which is what I did.
It's a few minutes on foot from the Great Buddha, and a short jaunt to other less famous temples and cute neighborhoods. A little greenery at a small temple near the beach. Buckets for cleaning gravestones.

Monday, July 06, 2009

good honest grub

Brunch! How I miss it. When Andy and Christa came to town, the stars aligned to make morning the best time to meet. So I suggested we try the brunch at Good Honest Grub.Open weekends from 1030 a.m. to 430 p.m., they have bottomless coffee, veggie wraps, and lots of omelets. And you-pick smoothies like apple ginger.
With pretty outdoor seating, it's a good place to while away a midday in Ebisu.
I'm still waiting for the vegan waffle brunch spot, though.