Tuesday, May 26, 2015

And I! I {DID} Survive!

Today, I was totally going to write about a cafe where you drink coffee and pet bunnies.
proof.  Unbelievably ADORABLE, proof.

But then guys, remember that one time when I was freaking out about the prevalence of Earthquakes here, and my anxiety about whether or not I could survive one?

Like, a real one!  A 5.6 on the Richter Scale!
Of course, that 5.6 was at the epicenter of the quake.  An epicenter which is located around 3 hours away from us, north of Tokyo.  Most people (including The Mister), didn't even feel the quake here.

With such an epic occurrence, obviously, the bunnies will have to wait.

My response to this natural disaster (in which no casualties have been reported and trains -even at the epicenter- only stopped for 10 minutes) was not a mess of immobilizing panic at all... (mild lie.)

Once I determined I should be petitioning to join the Avengers,
I made sure to check in on The Mister's wellbeing:

So all is well.  And now I'm off to leap tall buildings in a single bound.

Have you ever been surprised when something turned 
out less scary than you originally thought? 
 How did you react?
Tell me in the comments!

today's little language lesson

watashiwa mutekidesu.  gokiburi no yoo ni.

I am invincible.  Like a cockroach.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Creeping on Critters and Kids alike - A trip to the ZOO!

We went to the ZOO this weekend!  And per the Japanese style of bright colors and bizarre mascots*, it was confusing to everyone I know on Facebook.

Monday, May 11, 2015


We stand out here.  Compared with the locals, I'm tall, I'm curvy, I've got giant feet and bushy, brown hair.  When I walk down the street, I get looks.  At crosswalks people will openly stare at me until the light changes.

Most of the time I just ignore it - standing out is part of being here, and it's not like people are being hostile, it's just the curiosity of a very homogenous culture.  But sometimes... sometimes it's nice to try and fit in a little more.  Specifically with summer coming.

Coming from suburban Michigan, my day to day wardrobe usually consists of jeans and a t-shirt year round... give or take a hoodie in the winter.  As you may expect, Japanese lady-folk don't generally ascribe to that look.  As it's warmed up, I've come to understand that, yes, the fashion is about a cultural expectation to look a little more put together than a little kid who went Thrift Shopping with Macklemore.  A lot of it is to promote other beauty expectations, like magnifying a petite, thin build by wearing clothing that is long and loose in layers, or keeping pale skin pale by wearing long sleeves and hats, or even toting an umbrella with you everywhere so your skin never sees the sun.  But then there's a good chunk of Japanese fashion that's about Japanese clothing being manufactured specifically to be light and airy, out of material that wicks away sweat and keeps you dry without clinging to your body like a constricting layer of saran wrap*.
click to embiggen.
Related note?  Japanese women do not have the boob situation that I do.  I have come to understand this is not just a difference between our ethnic body-types, but rather a distinct advantage for them in this climate.  Boob sweat y'all.  It's real, and it's gross.  And it has, on more than one occasion in just the last week, left me wondering if I could feasibly put a maxi pad in the middle of my bra without it looking weird through my shirt.  I'm pretty sure it would look weird.  I'm pretty sure I will end up trying it in a fit of desperation sometime this summer.

Moving on.  As you may remember from our time in Mexico, I very much enjoy not sticking out like a sore thumb everywhere I go, so I have picked up a few things here and there.  But now that the humidity of "early summer season!" has reared it's ugly head, I find myself wanting to go a little more full-tilt into Japanese fashion for their magic wicking technology that doesn't just look like a suit of Under-Armor.
click to embiggen.
But is any of this in style in the states?  I have no way to check but to ask you, fair readers.  Would you wear any of this stuff?  Because aside from the sleeves (I think we've established that I'm okay with tanning) I've legit debated purchasing every bit of this stuff.  Particularly the yellow pants.  Like, I dream about them.

But before the yellow pants, I've found a few things on sale in the Uniqlo (think Japanese Old Navy), and yesterday I was super geeked to go out in some of my newer finds.  Confidence, thy name is affordable straw fedora.
tre chic.
Let's break down this awesome "going for a walk" look:
Okay, layering - I get it now.  Totally necessary, at least for this example.  So I had a confident half hour quickly followed by a brisk squeak-walk home while trying to cover my -neon colored (poor underwear choices)- shame.

What's a new fashion you want to try?  
Tell me in the comments!

today's little language lesson
其れ 犬 の スカートが かわいい です。
sore inu no sukaato kawaii desu.
that dog's skirt is cute.*

*One of the colleges I used to work at had an annual event where students were expected to dress up.  While there was a greater purpose an message to the type of dress expected at the event, most students took it more as an opportunity to dress as provocatively as possible, without really grasping the lesson (ahh, college).  I remember one group of girls in particular who decided to dress as Jello Shots and pulled this off by wrapping themselves in different colors of saran wrap for the evening.  This was notable because A. They wore nothing under the saran wrap, which as you might be familiar, is rather see through, regardless of how many layers you pile on, and B. One of them fell going down the stairs and because her legs were effectively saran wrapped together, she did not have the flexibility to be able to get herself back up.  So she was more a clear turtle than a jello shot.

**dog fashion is also fairly important here...

Monday, May 04, 2015

A Walk To The Park

This week I experimented, and I made a thing.  So here's that thing.

I'm too close to this to have a good perspective - would you actually watch more of these?  
Does it need to be shorter / longer / more facts / more humor?  
Tell me in the comments!

little language lesson
korewa, mizu o uru te-i-masu ka?
Does this [machine] sell water?