Posts Tagged Queens of the Stone Age

August 4, 2005 – Honeycomb

honeycomb

I now have a new CD on my “to buy” list. I just learned that Frank Black (aka Black Francis from the Pixies) has released his newest solo album, Honeycomb. I will have to do some searching to find it here. It’s not always easy to find import music in Japan, and then you have to search in Japanese alphabetical order. Frank Black can be found in the “Fu” section, for “fu-ra-n-ku bu-ra-ku”.

In the part month or so I have purchased and otherwise obtained new music from Audioslave, Rise, Guitar Wolf, Queens of the Stone Age, and others. You can’t have too much music!

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July 9, 2005 – The best food show ever

debuya

Today I watched the greatest Japanese TV show ever since Iron Chef, and possibly the best food show ever: Debuya.

Every since TV was invented, there have been shows about food. Most of the shows involve cooking, but not many involve people eating. Debuya features two large Japanese men traveling around the country eating local delicacies. The best part is that they absolutely love EVERYTHING. The show reminds me of when Homer Simpson became a food critic on the Simpsons (before he intentionally started writing bad reviews). Debuya needs to be translated and sent overseas immediately; it will become a huge hit.

Other than watching people eat, I went out and bought the new Queens of the Stone Age Album: Lullabies to Paralyze. Like other QOTSA, this one is also amazing!

Buying CDs in Japan is usually more expensive than buying them back home, but there are often extras for the Japan release. For example, my CD had three bonus tracks for Japan, a book of Japanese translations of the lyrics, and a bonus DVD. How cool is that?

(2015 Update) I don’t think Debuya ever made it to North America, but there have been a lot more shows about people eating since I wrote this post in 2005. What does a person need to do in order to get a job traveling and eating? That sounds fantastic!

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The Penpal

Another one of the important characters in my upcoming adventures is The Penpal.

In my second last year of University I took an elective Japanese language course. I liked it so much that I wanted to continue with another Japanese course in my final year of school. My biggest concern was losing my language abilities in the 4 months between semesters. Winnipeg has a very small Japanese community, so I wasn’t sure that I was going to be able to find language partners in person. Faced with a challenge, I turned to the internet for assistance.

Searching for foreign language exchange partners brings you to a wide array of websites – some legit language exchange sites, many more for finding foreign spouses. I would promote the website that I used, but it has now been replaced with a straight up dating website.

I signed up for an account and created a profile explaining that I was looking for someone to practice Japanese with. In my profile I specifically mentioned that I was a big fan of Radiohead, Pixies, Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins and the Beatles. In short order I ended up with penpals from Japan, Korea and the Philippines. One of my Japanese penpals decided to write to me because she shared the same taste in music. She was about the same age as me, and lived in a city called Numazu in Shizuoka prefecture. Like many other Japanese people, she had studied English in school but didn’t have a lot of opportunity to practice in daily life. Out of all of the penpals I got on the website, she and I had the most in common and wrote each other weekly in English and Japanese.

One of the highlights of our email exchanges was when I made a mix CD to send to her. The CD included Queens of the Stone Age, Moist, Our Lady Peace, Frank Black and other music that I was into at the time. Out of the CD, she particularly liked Moist and Our Lady Peace (go Canadian bands!). Not having a CD burner, she responded with a mix cassette. Her cassette included Shiina Ringo, UA, Love Psychedelico and Number Girl. I had never heard of any of them before, but quickly became a fan.

To be clear – I was not looking for a girlfriend. I already had one of those (The Ex). She also had a boyfriend at the time. We were both honestly looking for a language partner, and we both ended up finding a friend. From here forward I will refer to this person as “The Penpal”.

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