And our love become a funeral pyre.

I have learned something about myself since I’ve come to Japan. When it comes to dealing with heights that border on astronomical, “heights” and the danger that the “heights” hold, will awakes make me their bitch.

This decline in the ability to engage gravity in a round of fisticuffs actually started at my sister’s house. One day, my family and I were departing her company and I had noticed that she had some weeds growing out of the seams of her chimney. After we had made comments about it being the only house on her block with such an adornment, I eyeballed the roof, got her ladder out, and began my ascent.

Once I got on the roof, away from the ladder, I fully saw that the pitch of the roof was actually deeper than it appeared from the ground and that to ascend further would be like watching a cat ‘free-climb’ a wall using only their claws.

I was fucked.

My sister, and my wife and children, were on the ground looking up at my ample backside as all of the macho bravado was pinched out of me, like air being pinched out of the throat of a balloon.

I wasn’t really fucked.

Not wanting to back out of the “commitment” I had made to my sister, and not wanting to look like a total fool in front of my family, I began my snail-like crawl to the smokestack and decimated the offending weeds.

With respect to Japan, being on the edge of vertiginous heights seems to be a way of life. And with good reason: Japanese men and women aren’t stupid. They know where the edge is and they know what awaits them on the other side should they step in the wrong direction. That’s why they tend to live longer than us: because they don’t engage in Macho derring-do.

I’ve been to Skytree twice since I’ve landed in Japan. The first time that I went was for a field trip that had me chaperone two of my kids.

The second time was with my wife. We went all of the way to the Tembo Deck.

The Tembo Deck is the topmost part of the tower that is open to visitors. Parts of the Tembo Deck are constructed in a parabolic fashion. Meaning, you step up to the railing and you see that the safety glass is curved, giving the walkway an almost tub-life feel to it. The affect is that you get not only an unparalleled view of most of downtown Tokyo, but also a bird’s eye view of God’s asshole.

When my wife and I exited the elevator, we walked up to the rail that wasn’t choked with tourists. As she took in the view, I let out a long sigh. “That’s enough of that shit,” I said, and proceeded to hug wall until I saw that it was safe.

And thus, I concluded: If we were meant to be that far from the ground, we’d come pre-loaded with wings.

The only way that I would have been able to get the whole tower in was if I was lying on my back. I tried (my wife wasn’t having it). 

I’m going to get more shine in a little bit.

What you see above is a bona-fide rat-tail. Yes, it is on a minor. Yes, the child in question is not mine. And yes, there are a few points that I would like to notate for the record.

  1. The photo was captured around 2016. Which means that it’s sat in a draft-state in my queue for two years. Take this point for what it’s worth: maybe my thoughts on this specimen needed to mature?
  2. The photo was taken in Japan. Yes, it was taken in a school in Japan. However, in Japan, you do not need expressed consent if the person is recognizable. Yes, this person is recognizable to a degree. In the event that I should be contacted by them, or someone affiliated with them, I will gladly remove this post.
  3. This is an appreciation post.

The rat-tail owner and his parents should be applauded. Back in my day (yes, I am old enough to type that and be justified in doing so), should anyone of had a hairstyle that was unique in anyway, they would have been verbally fricassed.

In today’s world, where individuality is a tight rope walk that teeters between applause and damnation, expressing yourself in any physical way is an act of courage.

I see you 20th century hairstyle child. Nice work.

Independence Day.

Feast your eyes on what a fireworks display looks like in Japan. Granted, this was on American Government property. It looks like any damn fireworks show.

Yes, I’m one of those troglodytes who can go to a fireworks show like the one that you see below, sit quietly and patiently, absorbing the ink black sky being punctuated by man made star bursts, and still remain positively dead inside.

Fireworks just don’t do it for me. If there was some overall point, like someone issuing a proposal for marriage using strategically placed roman candles, or if there was a skeet shooting competition where the rifles were replaced with bottle rockets, then my interest might be peaked.

So, why am I showing you this side of me? Why did I go to a fourth of July celebration at all this year? For the same reason a husband/father does anything: my wife told me to, and she told me that I had to take the kids.

While I was loathe to participate, this matrimonial decree was not worth eschewing.

So, I took the kids, fought through the sweaty masses and accomplished my betrothed’s polite request. Not for nothing, it was nice watching my kid’s face’s light up.

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Groovy Movies.

IMG_8178.jpgIf there is one thing that living in Japan has gifted me with, it is a renewed belief in the idea of reincarnation.

Trends, fashions, old ways of thinking, even people: everything old will become new again.

  • Trends? Music was at one point solely purchased on “records”.
  • Fashions? People used to work really hard in order to put the right kind of holes in their jeans? Now? They can get that shit at Target.
  • Old ways of thinking? People who look differently than you, act differently than you, live differently than you, are against the “Natural Order” of god’s will and should be punished. (FYI: I’m not down with that way of thinking. If you must know, as a rule, I believe that everyone is an asshole until they prove me wrong).

People? Yes, that one can seem a bit nebulous.

However, it is generally put “right” every time I look at my son, and am reminded of the fact that he is a smaller, better, but not as good looking version of myself.

I Like to Ride My Bicycle.

Regardless of the transient nature of my family, I didn’t actively get into photography until we came to Japan.

I’m not proud of this because there have been plenty of opportunities to photograph in Florida that I missed out on. If you get past the idiocy of some of the state’s inhabitants, there’s no prettier a place that Florida during winter time.


With regard to the photo, on this particular day, it was colder than a well digger’s ass and I was exploring a different part of my neighborhood via bicycle. Prior to the photo, I had made a left turn down a random street in order to get off of the beaten path and away from the traffic.

This left turn put me within a cluster of homes, tripping on all of the unconventional architecture. I also learned in this cluster, that Japanese architects seemingly don’t plan neighborhoods so much as place houses. You’d be hard pressed to find 5 consecutive miles of straight road.

While I was in this cluster, I felt a pair of eyes on me. It was a woman, in her yard, looking at me, clearly amused by my presence.

In retrospect, I can’t blame her.

My bicycle was black, my helmet, which makes my enormous head, comically large, was also black. My outfit was completed with a thick, black hoody, and black nut hugger sweatpants. My shoes were also black.

I looked like I was trying out for a reboot of Beverly Hills Ninja.

I knew how silly I looked, so I smiled and waved because there was nothing else for me to do. For the record, she smiled and waved back as well.


The Piano has been drinking, not me.

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What you’re looking at here isn’t a store front, nor is it someone’s house.
This is a bar. In Japan. While the facade is nice and colorful, it’s hard not to notice the total lack of windows. Maybe there’s some at the rear of the establishment but it’s not bloody likely.
It’s also not very likely that I’ll step foot in there to confirm said windows. The last time that I was in a bar was over three years ago and I’ve been on the wagon ever sinceSure there have been plenty of good times achieved when I was on the sauce (drunken sled riding, seeing a geriatric Jerry Only and one of the many incarnations of the Misfits, to name a few) but for me? 
Some things just aren’t worth the effort it takes to miss them.

You Can’t Always Get What You Want.

For those of you who appreciate a bit of esoteric traveler knowledge, Americans who consider themselves ‘local’ to anywhere will always bitch about the weather and they’ll all use the same joke like it’s native and new: if you don’t like the weather in (name of region here) wait five minutes.

For the record, I’ve heard that used Florida where the weather is essentially sunny for 90% of the year.

Presently, I am in Japan. With the season of “fall” came our first ‘cold season’ in Japan. And since my families previous state was Florida, my wife was adamant about getting  a space heater since our home falls a bit on the drafty side. Naturally, I was enlisted in this shopping excursion because I’m her husband. I also used to sell space heaters (true fact!).

So we went to our local department store and purchased a space heater that we were both happy with. Upon exiting, I noticed that the Halloween costumes were merchandised on the same floor.

Shortly after that realization, I spied with my beady eyes the display that they were using in order to announce that they were, in fact selling Halloween Costumes.

In case you ever wondered what the population of Japan thought of President Trump, now you know.