Tokyo Damage Report

thanks everyone!

Thanks to everyone who wrote answers to my questions about Japan's econmy. I had no idea that so many respectable people even read this site. Then I started checking my email logs, and noticed something else cool: almost every comment is from a different person. This might mean that everyone gets sick of TDR after one comment, but it might also mean that the readers are as diverse as the topics I write about. If so, that is a rad state of affairs and makes me feel like the effort I put in is worth it. 

Also cool: the site statistics seem to show that folks are still "checking out" reports I did back in the day, almost as much as what's on the current page. I really appreciate it – that's one of the reasons I hate being called "a blog" – because blogs are only about what is happening right now, and generally lack substance.

So to everyone who is commenting or coming here for the first time because of random Google searches: thanks!

And here's a summary of what is in store for the coming months:

* A complete translation of a 2010 autobiography of Japan's most famous scatologist!

* A roundup of the most violent, "Death to America!" WWII patriotic songs.

* A list of the most comical Japanese surnames

* A bit more on Japan's capitalist-communist (er, i mean 'state capitalist') point of view

*  A brand-new show review, featuring some big names in theatrical glam-rock

* I discovered about a dozen OLD show reviews, from the old (pre wordpress) site that didn't get imported to wordpress correctly. I'll be re-posting them in lieu of actually GOING to shows.

* More crazy architecture on the Chuo line.

* annnnnnnnnnd. . . .I'm starting work on a new, fairly major project, which is going to be a history of Japanese avant-garde rock. By which i mean:

Bands that are  1) are rock-opera in nature, with character development and props, 2) use historical/trad. Japanese imagery, 3) incorporate confrontational performance-art, and 4) not visual kei.

What I'll try to do is to trace the threads of influence between bands, as well as try to isolate some Common Denominators that unite seemingly un-related bands. . . for example, maybe a lot of theatrical rock bands like the same  artists, literary figures, fashion designers, and manga. I'll try to point out those commonalities, as well as try to learn what it is about Japan that makes "rock opera" is such a viable  option.

Unfortunately, this means I'll have to learn about Japanese theatre history, which is pretty terrible. Also, I'll have to lean on my Japanese arty friends to dig up actual song lyrics and check those lyrics for references to old-school authors, historical figures, and etc. So don't hold your breath for this one.


8 Comments so far

  1. moof March 5th, 2011 3:10 pm

    The fact that every single thing you write is about something rather than "Today I went to the store and pooped out something that looked like a 金うんこ charm, lololol" is precisely why I continue to read.

  2. Cracksmoke March 5th, 2011 5:37 pm

    Dunno about anyone else, but I've been reading this site for time and it's one of the new tabs that pops up whenever I open my browser.  
    The material touched is all relevant to my interests, and your opinions are eerily similar to mine. 
    Best blog on the internet.

  3. rashomon March 7th, 2011 1:45 pm

    I have been visiting the site for a while now too. I really like that even though I’ve been studying Japan for awhile, the site continually provides so much information that I haven’t seen before.  The interviews with grey market workers, info on Torihada Minoru, the pictures of strange buildings, the translations, there is just tons of stuff that you don’t run into anywhere else. Thank you for all the hard work.

  4. Sarah March 8th, 2011 1:33 am

    Your plans sound really exciting, and I'm looking forward to reading those articles – especially the comical surnames, show reviews and crazy architecture. And if you get inspired to do any more neighbourhood anthropology-type articles, like the one on Kabukicho and its weird niche businesses, I'd love to see those too. I always enjoy seeing the stuff you come up with because you keep bringing my attention to whole CATEGORIES of stuff that I wouldn't have thought existed. Keep it up. How's your beard?

  5. BOD March 11th, 2011 9:18 pm

    I hope all is well with you and yours. If there is anything we can do to help you out over there let us know. Life would so much less with out TDR.

  6. Alyssa March 12th, 2011 5:33 am

    I haven't commented before but I drop by TDR periodically to check out your postings; your humor has a hell of a bite but your posts on Japanese society and culture are fascinating.  Just wanted to second BOD and say I hope you're alright.

  7. Jay March 13th, 2011 8:54 pm

    I've been reading this site for 9 years now I think, and I'm not sick of it yet.  It's given me a lot of laughs and a healthy dose of enlightenment.  Keep up the good work and glad to see from your subsequent post that you're alright.

  8. Alex March 29th, 2011 9:05 am

    hyped for surnames, aww yeah

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