Monthly Archives: October 2013

Tokyo Skytree

Japan’s Largest Tourist Trap The third stop of my Tokyo trip (after leaving the Tokyo National Museum) was the famed and new Tokyo Skytree. Since I took the Skytree bus from near Ueno station (I saw it pull up to a line of people and jumped on. It cost about 200 yen and drove right under the skytree), I had no problem finding the towering tower. There are plenty of ways to get there. It’s Part Mall I was expecting

TV and Dating in Japan

Television shows are a window into the culture of their target audience. They’re built to entertain but also be full of images that people can relate to. When viewing television from another culture, it is often easy to immediately see cultural differences that might lead to stereotypes or misunderstandings. Though I’ve lived in Japan for quite a while, I’ve never really made the transition to watching much Japanese TV. When friends started asking me if I was interested in participating

Maccha Macadamia Cookie Recipe

At this point I should probably get a lawyer, because I’m about to get a ton of hate-mail from dietitians. As promised, I’ve cooked up a recipe involving two of my favorite things. Maccha (aka Matcha) and white chocolate macadamia cookies. If you like maccha lattes or really any snack with that wonderfully powdered green tea in it, you’ll love these. While not a traditional Japanese food item, I hope you’ll give them a try. If you do share a

Tokyo National Museum

Just outside the grounds of the Ueno Zoo is a wide paved pavilion. Walking from the zoo, past the Starbucks and to the left is the Tokyo National Museum. For those interested in Japanese history it is a great place to stop by and see a wide selection of art, architecture, and historic items.  The museum complex includes five separate buildings, each with a separate focus. Honkan: Japanese Gallery The largest and most central building of the museum is the

A Year of Samurai Awakening

One year ago today Samurai Awakening, my first writing attempt longer than a blog post or school paper was published. I never set out to be an author or writer, but I have definitely found a lot of enjoyment (along with stress, worry, anxiety… you get the idea) in the process. Samurai Awakening, originally True Samurai, and then Jitsugen Samurai, was my attempt to share a bit of Japan with a younger audience, a kind of compliment to this blog.

Ueno Tokyo

Although I’ve lived in Japan for more than five years, until recently I had never traveled in Tokyo, which is usually the first stop for most expats and the home of many.  So, I’ll have a series of posts on my Tokyo trip from the perspective of a guy with Japan experience, but a fresh eye on the big city. I grew up in Phoenix, a large city but one that is spread out.  Our streets get more crowded than