madness in the metropolis 

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Return of the two-shower day

Well, there I was, kidding myself that maybe this summer wasn't so hot, maybe the humidity wasn't as severe as, say, a couple of years ago, maybe I could get away with going to work in a real shirt, not a t-shirt, maybe I didn't need to use the aircon all the damn time, maybe one shower a day would suffice.

Hah, right. Then suddenly the humidity hit with a vengeance. I think it was this weekend when I woke up to discover that my futon was actually damp, wet through from my sweating into it during the night. Yum. So, apparently, even sleeping is too much like hard work - must try to heat up less during all that energetic REM.

The slightest bit of effort makes my skin slick to the touch - so you can imagine what kind of a state I was in earlier tonight, after doing an hour's fencing training (I probably neglected to mention that I've started again, didn't I? - thought as much), jogging to the station with all my kit, fighting my way around the Yamanote Line to Ikebukuro and then hustling to meet a friend (ten minutes late, sorry) just in time to see Star Wars Episode II. One word: liquid.

And then, to add to my discomfort, I learn that Jar Jar Binks is responsible for setting off the Clone Wars. Senator Binks? What. The. Hell? All those lightsabres flashing hither and thither and no-one saw fit to decapitate the haddock-faced one. If "Oucha! Meesa hadsa my head cut off!" are the next words I hear him speak, I'll be *so* happy.

What's that? The *rest* of the film? Oh, that. Sorry, I was too busy muttering "Die, Binks, die" through a tight, feverish grimace to notice the awesome digital effects or epic battle scenes - though thankfully I did come round in time to see Yoda open a pint-sized can of whoop-ass on Count Doofus. I think Star Wars may even be, subconciously at least, the reason I started fencing in the first place, so I was happy as a pig in poo with that one, thankyouverymuch. Probably a good thing I checked my swords in at the front desk, else I might have tried to join in.

Die, Binks, die.

Posted by chris at 02:17 AM | Permalink


Tripped over a good resource earlier today: this section of the JR East Web site (Japan Railways) gives you tons of information about pretty much any JR station you care to name (I haven't checked them all, you understand, but it seems fairly extensive). Access Mapion data, train routes, timetables, three-dimensional concourse / platform maps in a choice of PDF or HTML, car rental locations, lists of recommended accommodation, yada yada yada. The whole thing is about as comprehensive as Antarctica is big, white and cold.

Fewer penguins, though.

Posted by chris at 07:33 PM | Permalink

Kanji SITE props

kanji - lit,"Chinese characters"Spotted while flicking through the latest copy of Metropolis yesterday: an article on on-line Japanese study. I skimmed through it briefly, assuming that there'd be no mention of The Kanji SITE anywhere - but whaddaya know? According to the last paragraph, the site is "clever and irreverent". Gosh. The author might also have added "infrequently updated and often hard to access", but I'm not going to argue that one.

Posted by chris at 02:34 PM | Permalink

Thin eyebrows cause displeasure

Judo meet organizers disqualify 6 students for thin eyebrows - "We have banned thin eyebrows because they are intimidating to opponents and cause displeasure."

Yeah, that was always high on my list of intimidating factors when I used to fence competitively. Of course, I had to actually stick the plucked eyebrows onto the outside of my mask to have any effect, but still.

Posted by chris at 05:44 PM | Permalink

Five Thai baht a minute

Five Thai baht a minute (about five quid an hour?) is really far too much to be paying for Internet access, no matter how comfy the plush leather chairs, so I'm going to have to find some other way to kill the time between now (11pm) and check-in (4:30am tomorrow). Damn United Airlines.

On the way back from an ultra-short-notice trip to Koh Phangan, Thailand. Had a great time, got a nice mix of a) techno-carnival-firespinning-eurotrash-backpacker-beach-rave action, b) sitting around doing very little, c) snorkeling and d) being forced into improbable contortions by a pro wrestler disguised as a squat middle-aged Thai masseuse. Photos of all but the last on the way.

Posted by chris at 01:17 AM | Permalink


Ah, that's better. Much better. Blogging via cellphone / satellite uplink from a secret location...

Mmm, secret locations...

Posted by chris at 01:48 PM | Permalink

Wai wai? Why not?

Really busy no time for anything but promise I'll have time to tell you all about everything very shortly including explaining why my mother is sending me syringes in the mail and in the meantime you could do a lot worse than go read some wai wai which I've known about for a while but only been spurred into blogging about since picked it up because as I think I've already said I really am rather busy right now but I will just take a second to say that I'm definitely not telling you if I'm a ninja or not, no sirree see you soon bye.

Posted by chris at 01:27 PM | Permalink

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