Friday, December 31

The coffee and the letter

Wake up, Mike, 2011 is brewing. Drink your coffee, and don’t worry.

I will write you, will write about you, more often than the sparsely recorded life of a deranged man.

I will wake up with you in the morning, and we’ll light our palms red against the bursting sunshine of an 8 AM. I’ll make sure the bath is warm and that the toaster will toss warm pair of bread for breakfast. Buy your bicycle, because it is nice to start the day racing against rambunctious Japanese gradeschoolers on your way to school.

We’ll eat lunch in empty playgrounds, sitting on see-saws and listening to rousing mid-day breeze. If it's blue skies all over, we’ll throw a small picnic by that bench in the field so we can watch the universe at the same time. If you’re under the weather, there’s McDonalds and people-watching across the street. You see, there’s so much we can do before the day closes to half.

We can listen to jazz and solve math all afternoon together, just like the old times. I know you’re excited to go back to discovering Fabionacci sequences in soil, and betting your life on Mathlab. We’ll be geeks, and remain shall so amidst the languages we both don’t understand at all.

At the end of the day, we’ll do the market; I know seeing a huddle of yellow peppers is one of your guilty pleasures. We’ll visit every window of your favorite shops in Jiyugaoka, and wonder why there’s so many old, rich women in your neighborhood.

We’ll start the night with a tea, because we’re awesome like that. There are so many fabricated lives to watch from your favorite TV series. Believe me, there's always a new English tongue to rehearse.

On weekends, we’ll take the camera to the city, and shoot buildings and wonderful things in the sky. Or if you’re bored, we can always grab a coffee somewhere, read a book, or pretend we’re mysterious poets at the crack of rabid fame. And if you’re really really bored, let’s just get lazy with your guitar, sing slowly until we can see all pieces of dust settle inside your room.

We’ll be fine, Mike, I assure you because we are cool like that. So wake up now because a new year is brewing. I promise this will be a great one, because now I can see that your eyes are awake and they will remain wide open because I will be with you every minute that they are.

Credits: Seasons of love, because we'll measure the year with the heart this time.

Happy new year everyone.
All the love from Tokyo.

Thursday, December 23

Hello, stranger.


When does exactly a stranger stops becoming a stranger? Is it after a shared drink and few thoughtless conversations about ephemeral current events infront of an awkward bartender? Or after a candid mistake of smiling at a snotty baby in a crib which told the mom everything was not a mere coincidence? Or after the creaking sound of a rundown bed stopped by the consolation of a one night stand in a dingy motel room?

Credits: The Blower's Daughter by Damien Rice, from Closer, because the pedestrian with strangers are mad mental exercise for unhurried feelings of loneliness and exclusion.
Someone said before: "Everytime I go to Shibuya, I fall in love with a stanger." So this is Shibuya.

Monday, December 13

Norwegian Wood

I first read Murakami's Norwegian Wood when I was still living in a boy's dormitory some years back. Tossing up endlessly on top of my bed for a few nights, I dreamt I was Toru Watanabe, back in the 1960s in his college dormitory in the restless Tokyo. In the afternoon, I would go out of my dorm's balcony while reading the book, and pretend I'm at Midori's own balcony, watching a building growing fire at some distance. To say I was hooked is an understatement because I even bought The Great Gatsby halfway of the Norwegian Wood, and started reading the two books in parallel just so I can fully breath what exactly is Toru was feeling at that time. I didn't finish The Great Gatsby though, because Norwegian Wood ended so damn frustrating I was depressed for several days.

Now, Norwegian Wood is a movie. All I could think of is how to watch it. The problem is most movie theaters in Tokyo are in Japanese. I hope I could find one that has English subtitles at the end of the week. Cross your fingers Toru.

Norwegian Wood of The Beatles is playing. The photo I took a few months ago.

Wednesday, December 8

Say it, damn it.

I'm currently watching a highly neurotic TV series, In Treatment, the American treatment of Hagai Levi's successful Israeli series BeTipul. What interests me is how people behaves differently from what their mouths say. Sometimes, that quarter of a foot distance between the heart and the tongue is a bit longer than necessary. We say hurtful things to people we love when all we want to say but don't actually say is "I love you". (God, shoot me, I'm so emo, haha.)

On the same line of thought, of equal interest are the things we don't say to cover the said distance. I think that the things we mum about are more hurtful than the things we do say. Or probably my level of paranoia is just more conscious than average?

Anyway, this post is for my dad, the man I never had said enough of what I needed to. He celebrated his birthday 2 weeks ago. If he was with us, he would have been 79.

John Mayer has a song, one of my favorites, and highly coincidental to my post. I used it to make this post highly emotional. So shoot me now.

More autumn photos for you.