About Me

1. Where were you born?
Mississippi, USA

2. Where did you grow up?
Florida, USA

3. When did you come to Japan?
In 1990, at the age of 20.

4. Where do you live now?
In Tokyo, Japan.
With my Japanese wife and our three kids (hence this site’s name: “Tokyo Five”)

5. Did you experience culture shock when you came to Japan?
When I first came to Japan, many aspects of Japan’s culture surprised me. But I’m quite comfortable in Japan now.
I don’t have opportunity to visit America very often…so the last time I was there I experienced culture shock in America.

275 Responses to “About Me”

  1. Aunt Linda March 27, 2008 at 2:02 am #

    Sorry you had to delete the other website–it was so wonderful–lots of work went into it, and now you have to start over! Bummer, Bob. I loved your new photos–don’t think I took the time to comment–I’ll try to be better here, as the site develops. Good luck!
    Kisses to all.
    Linda

  2. tokyo5 March 27, 2008 at 10:17 pm #

    Linda…
    Thanks for commenting.

    >Sorry you had to delete the other website–it was so wonderful–lots of work went into it, and now you have to start over!

    Well, I enjoy doing it whenever I have the time!
    I plan to add a couple new pages to this site.

    >the time to comment

    Yes, please comment on all my posts whenever you have time.

    • chosuncoreano1 March 2, 2011 at 5:17 pm #

      Does number means family member???

      • tokyo5 March 2, 2011 at 5:29 pm #

        >Does number means family member???

        Yes. Five of us in Tokyo…hence “Tokyo Five”.

        What is the “1” in your “name”?

        And you’re the same person who commented on my site under a different name here, right?

        Now your avatar is a North Korean flag. Are you in North or South Korea? (I would assume “South”…so why the North Korean flag?)

      • chosuncoreano1 March 4, 2011 at 10:36 pm #

        You know North Korean Flag? then why is your name Tokyo using Chinese character??

      • tokyo5 March 4, 2011 at 10:53 pm #

        >You know North Korean Flag?

        Yes. I know what the North Korean flag looks like. I know what many different countries’ flags look like.
        And so do many other people.

        That doesn’t mean anything.
        I asked why you’re using it as your avatar if you’re in South Korea?

        (Update to this comment: This is moot now, because as I mentioned in this comment, you changed your avatar.)

        >why is your name Tokyo using Chinese character??

        You mean my avatar?
        First of all, it doesn’t say “Tokyo”…it says “Power”.
        And that character is originally Chinese, as you said…but Japan uses kanji too, so it’s Japanese.

        And the reason I use it is because I’m a fan of the American rock band KISS and they use that symbol with those colors as a kind of “sub” logo.
        The reason KISS uses it is kind of a long story but every KISS fan is familiar with that symbol—even if they don’t all know what it says.

        Understand?

  3. Javits Britt March 30, 2008 at 12:16 am #

    Sorry its been so long since I stopped by to say HI. Hope all is going well. I have big news … going to be a DAD. We found out alittle while ago, Oct. 3rd is the due date. Its all kind of setting in right now,me a dad!!! Anyway I thought that I’d say hello and tell you the big news. Tell everyone I said hi.
    Take care Bob and hopefully I’ll see you soon some day

    • Anonymous November 5, 2013 at 1:43 am #

      word up

      • tokyo5 November 5, 2013 at 8:26 am #

        Thanks.

  4. tokyo5 March 30, 2008 at 12:45 am #

    Javits…
    Thanks for visiting my site, and leaving a comment.

    And…congratulations!

  5. Dad April 2, 2008 at 3:32 am #

    Hi Bob,
    So what happened to your other website?
    Will you have pictures and everything again? I enjoyed the video of that group, very interesting to see the culture differences between Japan and USA.

  6. tokyo5 April 2, 2008 at 11:22 pm #

    Dad…thanks for writing.
    Write more often!

    >So what happened to your other website?

    I had so many photos and pages on it that I used up my alloted space. I decided to start over…and have less photos on this site.

    I like WordPress for the blog. I’m gonna use my other site for a different type of website when I have a chance to program it.

    >Will you have pictures and everything again?

    I have pictures on this site…and videos, too.
    It seems the videos are popular so I’ll add more.

    >very interesting to see the culture differences between Japan and USA.

    There are many differences!

  7. gabuchan June 12, 2008 at 11:39 am #

    Thanks for stopping by my blog and commenting!

  8. highaltitude July 8, 2008 at 11:47 pm #

    hi tokyo5,

    read your comment on sfrunner =)

    nice blog!

  9. tokyo5 July 9, 2008 at 12:40 am #

    Thank you.
    Feel free to visit my site and comment often.

  10. sungypsy July 17, 2008 at 11:08 pm #

    Thanks for stopping by my site too, the videos of the Mitama masuri are good. It is one of my favourite festivals here.
    See you around.
    Damon

  11. tokyo5 July 17, 2008 at 11:20 pm #

    sungypsy…

    Thanks for commenting on my site.

    >the videos of the Mitama masuri are good

    Thank you! (The videos are on this post: http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/07/17/mitama-matsuri/ )

  12. sfrunner July 19, 2008 at 11:19 am #

    tokyo5, I got it part right about the holiday Sea Day. What I didn’t know was that there wasn’t a holiday in July. However, it’s nice to have a holiday like this because it gives us time to reflect about what’s around us. I know you know this but three quarters of the earth is water.

    Have a good weekend. I’ll be registering for the Tokyo Marathon on July 22.

  13. Gene Ordanza July 19, 2008 at 2:06 pm #

    Hi Tokyo5,

    Nice blog. But you know, seeing how you frequent sfrunner’s blog, I had the impression that you were also a runner, but checking your blog I’m not sure if you are though. Well… it’s never too late to start :-)

    –gene

  14. tokyo5 July 20, 2008 at 1:03 am #

    sfrunner…

    >I got it part right about the holiday Sea Day. What I didn’t know was that there wasn’t a holiday in July.

    Until the year 2000, there were no public holidays in either June or July! It was a long stretch!

    I was happy when they added this holiday!

    >I know you know this but three quarters of the earth is water.

    And rising! (Thanks to Global Warming!)

    >I’ll be registering for the Tokyo Marathon on July 22.

    This Tuesday! When will you find out if you’ve been selected?

  15. tokyo5 July 20, 2008 at 1:13 am #

    Gene Ordanza…

    Thanks for visiting my site…and commenting!

    >Nice blog.

    Thank you!

    >But you know, seeing how you frequent sfrunner’s blog, I had the impression that you were also a runner

    No, I’m not. I found his blog because we both wrote a post about the candidate cities for the 2016 Olympics.
    I wrote about Tokyo and he wrote about Chicago.
    (My post is here:

    http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/06/07/tokyo-olympics/

    and sfrunner’s is here:
    http://sfrunner.wordpress.com/2008/06/06/2016-summer-olympic-games/ )

    And it turned out that he’s visited Tokyo about seven years ago and I’ve visited San Francisco about fourteen years ago!

    >it’s never too late to start

    I guess. But I actually dislike running! Sorry.

    But “sfrunner” is a great guy and I enjoy his posts (and his comments on my site).

  16. Gene Ordanza July 20, 2008 at 3:32 pm #

    >I guess. But I actually dislike running! Sorry.

    Hehe, with so many things to like about running, it’s not too often you’d find someone oppose to it, must have been quite a story there :-)

    –gene

  17. tokyo5 July 20, 2008 at 11:45 pm #

    Gene…

    >must have been quite a story there

    No. Nothing like that. It just doesn’t appeal to me.
    Must be difficult for someone who enjoys it to understand, but…

  18. Chris August 10, 2008 at 5:39 am #

    Well, I’m quite jealous. Hopefully I’ll get to visit Japan one of these days. I’d really like to! :)

  19. tokyo5 August 10, 2008 at 5:52 pm #

    Chris…

    Thanks for visiting my site and commenting.
    Feel free to comment anytime.

    And you should visit Japan. It’s a great place!

  20. NerdSpawn August 28, 2008 at 7:01 pm #

    Hiya,

    Thanks for the visit to my site — and for the comment. Hope to update it soon (work has me going batty).

    I’m absolutely loving your blog … especially all of the wonderful photos. Can relate to your “culture shock” when back visiting the U.S. — strange, isn’t it? Although, I’m not dealing with near as different societies as you (France/UK to US), it’s still a bit bizarre going “back home” for me.

    Off to peruse more of your great photos … and add more reasons to our family’s “Must Visit Japan” list.

  21. tokyo5 August 28, 2008 at 8:25 pm #

    NerdSpawn…

    Thanks for the kind words…

    >Off to peruse more of your great photos

    Thanks.
    You can see more at the page I just added. Here:

    http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/08/28/photos/

    >add more reasons to our family’s “Must Visit Japan” list.

    Yes. You should visit!

  22. Joy September 26, 2008 at 9:16 pm #

    Hello Tokyo5
    I came from a Japanese gentleman’s blog called “Garden Life” ..
    It must have been quite a culture shock for you at first in Japan from the States .. and now ironically it is the reverse. Your Japanese must be fluent by now .. coming here at such a young age must have been helpful.
    I’m Canadian .. we were a military family before my husband retired (medical reasons .. the first Gulf War) .. we had the opportunity to live in Holland for 4 years .. South Limburg province .. NATO facility in Brunssum. It was a wee bit of a culture shock and having a teenage son .. well, that is a shock through those years any where ? LOL
    Thanks for the peek into an extraordinary life : )

  23. tokyo5 September 26, 2008 at 11:12 pm #

    Joy…

    Thanks for visiting my site and commenting! Comment on my site anytime!

    >I came from a Japanese gentleman’s blog called “Garden Life” ..

    You mean ( http://iyasaka.blogspot.com/ )…right?
    He just commented on my site, too! (His comment is here: http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/09/21/jerry-yellins-book/#comment-547 )

    His blog’s all in Japanese. Can you read 日本語?

    >It must have been quite a culture shock for you at first in Japan from the States .. and now ironically it is the reverse.

    That’s quite right!
    Actually, I plan to write a blog post about that subject soon.

    >Your Japanese must be fluent by now ..

    Well, I’ve lived here since 1990. Even someone as dense as me will pick it up after that many years!

    >we had the opportunity to live in Holland for 4 years ..

    How did you like it in Holland?
    What part of Canada do you live? (Not that I know Canada very well. I’ve only been to Niagara Falls once years ago. Does that count? It was very close to the US border.)

    >having a teenage son .. well, that is a shock through those years any where ? LOL

    I have teenage daughters! So I know about teenagers (not necessarily about sons though).

    >Thanks for the peek into an extraordinary life : )

    Thank you! As I said above…please visit and comment often!

  24. Joy September 27, 2008 at 1:27 am #

    Hello again !
    I’m in Kingston Ontario .. on the northern tip of Lake Ontario .. but we have lived from one coast and the other .. Vancouver Island in Comox B.C. and of course Nova Scotia (we were all born in N.S. so that makes us Blue Nose .. )
    We picked up a bit of Dutch language but soon lost it once back here because it isn’t a common language .. some what like Japanese would be here ? .. we do get loads of Japanese Tourists though .. and especially in Autumn when the leaves change here .. they like the scenery and the less crowded conditions most likely ?
    I have to find those posts you left in your comments on my blog now .. I do admire the Japanese style of gardens and structures .. simplistic but so beautiful it does emanate a serene quality we could all use : )
    Thanks for stopping by my blog !

  25. tokyo5 September 27, 2008 at 2:09 am #

    Joy…

    Thanks for commenting again!

    >I’m in Kingston Ontario

    I had to look at a map to find that city.
    It looks like it’s not too far from Niagara Falls (the only part of Canada that I’ve been to).
    Is that right?

    And, yes, I’m sure that many Japanese tourists visit Canada for the scenery. In Japan, the image of Canada is nature. And the “Aurora“.

    (For those that may not know…the “Aurora” is natural colored light displays in the sky, usually observed at night, particularly in the polar zone. (I got that definition from Wikipedia (here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aurora_Borealis))).

    Did you see my photos of Japanese gardens on a few posts on this blog?

  26. Sir Pent October 5, 2008 at 1:20 am #

    I was reading through your “about me” section and it never really mentions “WHY” you moved to Japan. I’ve never been outside the US, kinda gutless that way so I’m always fascinated by people that not only take extended visits…but make the move.

  27. tokyo5 October 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm #

    Sir Pent…

    Yeah, maybe I should add more info to this page. I’ll think about it. (I know many people put alot of personal information on their blogs. I’m not that comfortable with the internet to do that).

  28. Sir Pent October 5, 2008 at 3:58 pm #

    Hopefully it’s not “I was on the run from the US government”…

  29. Travis Wiseman October 13, 2008 at 11:11 am #

    I like your site Bob! Tell “A” and the kids hello for me.

    Travis

  30. tokyo5 October 13, 2008 at 11:54 pm #

    Travis…

    Been awhile since I’ve heard from you!

    Thanks for the compliment!

    Enjoy Trick ‘R Treating with your kids later this month!

  31. umepontarou October 16, 2008 at 10:56 am #

    I totally understand that you had culture shock in your own country!! When I came to Perth I had huge culture shock as this town is so different from Japan :p But now, on the other hand, I often experience culture shock in Japan… Every time I go back to Japan I think Japan is スゴい!(^0^)

  32. tokyo5 October 16, 2008 at 11:20 pm #

    How long have you been living in Australia? How often do you visit Japan?

    And…I agree. Japan is スゴイ!

  33. umepontarou October 17, 2008 at 11:19 am #

    I’ve been living in Perth for 5 years now. I came here as a student when I was 20. I couldn’t speak English at all then, but somehow I managed to learn… still not perfect though :p
    I go back to Japan about once a year, but sometimes 2 years. Last time I was in Japan was 2005. I’m going back at the end of this year with my partner and I’m really looking forward to see my family & friends. I haven’t been in Japan in winter for 5 years, so I hope I can see snow :) Can’t wait to go 初詣で too!

  34. tokyo5 October 18, 2008 at 12:45 am #

    Your English is excellent.

    And 初詣 (Hatsumoude (First Shrine visit of the Year)) is very crowded!

  35. umepontarou October 18, 2008 at 12:59 am #

    I know… but still, I miss it!! Memories, you know :) I will definitely get Taiyaki at Hatsumoude hehe…

  36. tokyo5 October 18, 2008 at 1:09 am #

    Oh, I definitely think you should go to 初詣 if you’re in Japan at New Years! (Especially since you live overseas now).
    I go every year! When I first came to Japan, I was shocked by Tokyo’s crowds…but I’m used to it now. I don’t mind.

    How long will you live in Australia?

  37. umepontarou October 18, 2008 at 1:57 am #

    The crowds in Japan is sometimes very tiring but I’m ok with it too.
    I still hate getting in the crowded train though(><) I used to go to a college in Osaka and everyday after school I was dead :p

    Ummm I think I will live in Australia for a long time. I miss Japan, but my partner doesn’t speak Japanese and he doesn’t wanna leave Perth:p
    But I think he can survive in Japan. He is a web developer/designer/programmer and I think he can get a job easily there… and he looks like Japanese too :p

  38. tokyo5 October 18, 2008 at 2:39 am #

    I think riding a rush hour train is better than driving in rush hour traffic.
    At least, you can sleep (even if it’s standing up :) ) on the train!

  39. umepontarou October 18, 2008 at 12:44 pm #

    True. Do you drive in Tokyo?? I don’t think I can do it:p I’ve never driven a car in crowded city… I love driving in Shiga though :) A drive around Biwa lake is awesome!

  40. tokyo5 October 18, 2008 at 6:01 pm #

    >Do you drive in Tokyo??

    Occasionally.

    Do they have trains in Australia? Are they prompt like in Japan?

  41. umepontarou October 18, 2008 at 11:15 pm #

    Not at all. Here everything is very slow and relaxing.
    We do have trains but very different from ones in Japan. The train station here don’t even have 自動改札機 :p

  42. tokyo5 October 18, 2008 at 11:35 pm #

    Do you ride the train often?

    When I first came to Japan, there were no 自動改札機 (Automatic turnstiles) at the train stations here either.
    I wrote about it here:

    http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/10/17/its-been-18-years/

  43. umepontarou October 19, 2008 at 1:03 am #

    I used to go to work by train before, but not any more. I actually don’t like public transport …

    Wow 18 years ago there was no elevators, escalators and automatic ticket gates?? Hmmm so Japan has changed very much in such a short time:p Wow…
    Yes I remember almost everyone started to use mobile phone in Japan when I was 14. Before then only business men were using huge mobile phones.

  44. tokyo5 October 19, 2008 at 8:48 pm #

    Especially in a big city like Tokyo…the trains / subways are much better than driving.
    I don’t need to buy gas or car insurance nor look for and pay for a parking spot.

    Tokyo’s trains are clean, affordable, safe…and extremely punctual!

    And…it’s not just Japan…but the whole world has changed alot in the past 18 years, I’m sure.

  45. umepontarou October 19, 2008 at 10:28 pm #

    Yes I think so too. I can even see that in Perth. It’s changed a lot since I came here.

  46. tokyo5 October 20, 2008 at 12:00 am #

    >I can even see that in Perth. It’s changed a lot since I came here.

    In only five years?
    So, you can imagine how many changes I’ve seen in 18 years!

  47. umepontarou October 20, 2008 at 4:50 pm #

    Haha yeah:)
    But really, Perth was lots different 5 years ago. People were using small phones with no cameras and unique facility then. That was a culture shock to me because I used to use mobile phone in Japan and Japanese mobiles got lots of facility like email, internet, movies, 着うた, 絵文字 etc… as you know.
    Now, in Perth, there are modern mobile phones and most of them have cameras and email facility finally! Thank god.
    But Japanese technology is very progressive and I always get culture shock every time I go back:)

  48. Rein October 21, 2008 at 12:08 am #

    I’m an Aussie, and lived in Japan from 1993 to 2000. From time to time, especially on these hot nights like tonight when the cicadas start chirping outside, I get nostalgic for Japan.

    I made my life-changing decision to move to Japan on the spur of the moment. I forget why, but in my early 20s I had made up my mind “It is better to make rapid decisions and stick to them come hell or high water, than to endless prevaricate”. (It must’ve been after some painful 20something indecision.) Virtually the day I’d invented this policy, my sister phoned from her company in Tokyo and asked if I’d like to take a job in rural Japan, starting immediately. I gave it almost no thought, said the word “Yes” and resolved to follow it through.

    I knew nothing about Japan at the time, had no Japanese, and really no reason to go there. I just did it.

    Anyway tonight I googled “blogs about japan in the 90s” and up popped your site. Not only that, the second post I read, you’ve got Umepontarou commenting from Perth, where I live.

    I haven’t read much of your site yet but I’m enjoying what I’ve seen.

    Perth has undergone a mining boom over the last 5 years and is rapidly converting its spacious inner city country-town style blocks into high-density dwellings. It reminds me of Japan – of course its nowhere near as dense as Tokyo yet but it makes me wonder what it must have been like through the 50s to the 80s as Japan rapidly transformed from agricultural / rural and post-war ruin to the behemoth it is today.

    BTW one of the effects of my extended stay in Japan (I think) has been a retardation of my command of the English language! My theory is, it was because so many neural pathways fell into disuse during those years. Reading and listening, no problem. But my ability to put complex or even simple ideas into (English) words really dived!

    I’d be interested in hearing more of your story – what brought you to Japan, how you and your wife met, how you made the decision to stay there, etc. I’ll search your blog posts…

  49. tokyo5 October 21, 2008 at 1:41 am #

    umepontarouさん、

    >Japanese mobiles got lots of facility like email, internet, movies, 着うた, 絵文字 etc… as you know.

    Besides E-mail, Camera, Movies, Internet, Ring tone, Picture Symbols…Japanese ケータイ (cell-phones) can be used as “Phone wallet” for making purchases and paying train fare (they can even pay for vending machine purchases), Watching TV, Playing MP3 Music files, etc…

    In Japan, few people “talk” into their cell-phone…everyone sends / receives E-mail.
    How about Australia?

  50. tokyo5 October 21, 2008 at 1:56 am #

    Rein…

    Thanks for visiting my site and commenting!
    Please visit often and comment anytime.

    >lived in Japan from 1993 to 2000.

    What did you do? English teacher?
    Where did you live? Tokyo?

    Seven years in Japan? Can you speak / read Japanese now?

    >on these hot nights like tonight

    That’s funny to me that it’s summer in Australia! :)

    >when the cicadas start chirping outside

    Do you have 蝉 (Cicadas) in Australia? To Japanese people, it’s the sound of summer.

    >my sister phoned from her company in Tokyo

    Does you sister still live in Japan?

    >I knew nothing about Japan at the time, had no Japanese

    Me neither, when I first came here. (See my post here:
    http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/10/17/its-been-18-years/ )

    >Anyway tonight I googled “blogs about japan in the 90s” and up popped your site.

    I just tried it :)
    My blog’s the top result for that particular search. :)

    >I haven’t read much of your site yet but I’m enjoying what I’ve seen.

    Thanks. As I said above…feel free to comment on any of the posts!

    >…my command of the English language!

    HAHA. I know. Sometimes I forget an English word and can only remember the Japanese. I have to check a 日→英辞書 (Japanese→English Dictionary) :)

  51. umepontarou October 21, 2008 at 8:14 pm #

    It is a huge culture shock to me(>0<)
    so people send their actual voice message via email?? Hmmm sugoi ne.
    I’ve heard about this “Phone wallet” but I’ve never experienced using it. I heard that you can buy drinks from vending machines, convenience stores and more with mobiles.

    In Australia?? No way :p There is not such things here…
    I think I’m gonna be lost in Japan :p
    大丈夫かなあ??

  52. tokyo5 October 21, 2008 at 9:57 pm #

    Yeah, maybe you’ll be surprised.
    Most people use their ケータイ (cell-phone) or “SUICA” (I think it’s called “ICOCA” in 大阪 (Osaka)) to ride the trains, subways, buses…and 駅 Koisk.

  53. umepontarou October 21, 2008 at 10:35 pm #

    Is ICOCA and SUICA same thing??
    I think it very useful, no need to carry cash:) I sometimes don’t carry wallet and regret it when I feel like something to drink or eat. Mobile is the thing I always carry no matter what so the phone wallet is what I need!

  54. tokyo5 October 21, 2008 at 10:55 pm #

    >Is ICOCA and SUICA same thing??

    Yes, JR East Japan has “SUICA” and JR West Japan has “ICOCA”.
    Other train and bus companies use “PASMO”. They can all be used at any train / subway station and almost all buses.

    I wrote a bit about SUICA here:

    http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/08/06/competition/

    >the phone wallet is what I need!

    It’s very popular. Especially with young people.

  55. Rein October 22, 2008 at 2:00 am #

    >What did you do? English teacher?

    Yep. It was a fun job, teaching kids mostly with a smattering of “Ladies” and some private students for a big company (NOT Nova). Best thing about it was I got to travel around to a different town in Gunma and Saitama (first 4 years) and then Kanagawa and Tokyo (second 3 years) each day. So I got to see a lot of places, and get a good idea how people lived and so on. And I seem to remember from keeping my diary and writing letters home, in the first year it seemed like I saw something amazing literally every single day.

    >Where did you live? Tokyo?

    Takasaki in Gunma, then Yokohama. Living in Tokyo didn’t appeal to me initially. I’d seen a JET presentation video at some stage and it had this young American guy and his family living in an idyllic beachside town in rural Japan and had the idea that the countryside would be more rewarding i.e. would force me into a deeper Japanese cultural experience, which I think it did.

    >Seven years in Japan? Can you speak / read Japanese now?

    I studied obsessively for a few years and gained a reasonable degree of fluency and reading skill. One of my favourite sources of learning was MANGAJIN – did you ever read that? It opened my eyes to the world of Japanese slang and colloquial language – with rigorous lingustic explanations. I was working almost exclusively with women and children hence my “natural” Japanese tends to be a bit effeminate.

    I can still speak it reasonably well, though hesitantly, but I can certainly understand most conversational Japanese. I just went to dinner tonight with 6 Japanese people here in Perth and really enjoyed eavesdropping on their conversation – though I have to admit I was more comfortable expressing myself in English most of the time.

    In your work and life are you dealing all the time with Japanese people in Japanese?

    >Does you sister still live in Japan?

    No she met a guy in Tokyo and they ended up moving to NYC, then Melbourne. Funny thing is, he’s 1/4 Japanese himself and his mum looks totally Japanese.

    >>Anyway tonight I googled “blogs about japan in the 90s” and up popped your site.

    >I just tried it :)
    >My blog’s the top result for that particular search. :)

    Yes, congratulations. To be honest I’m surprised there isn’t more writing on this topic popping up on Google. I would’ve thought of the millions of ex-pats who’ve been through Japan the last 20 years more of us would’ve started blogging about it. (Not that I can talk!) We thought we were so groovy and technologically tuned-in back in the 90s, living in Technopolis and all. How is it you have time to devote to a blog when you have a family and job etc?? I barely get time to look at emails.

    >…my command of the English language! >>

    On that point I noted tonight that a loss of command of English does not necessarily pay off in the form of increased fluency in Japanese.

    BTW, just to contradict Umepontarou a little bit – You CAN receive voicemail via email in Australia, and email on a mobile phone has become fairly standard. However the system of paying for stuff with mobile phones is just one of those “digital fables from a the mysterious land of the rising sun” we hear from time to time. Sounds very convenient.

    On a contrary note, when I moved to Japan I was surprised to find that ATMs only functioned during banking hours. Surely their entire raison e’etre was to access banking facilities out of hours?? AND during the entire 90s credit cards were rare. Everything was cash.

  56. tokyo5 October 22, 2008 at 11:58 pm #

    Rein…

    So you lived in 群馬県 (Gunma, Japan) and then 横浜市 (Yokohama, Japan)?
    Out in the countryside and then to Japan’s second-largest city!

    I like to visit rural Japan…especially for festivals (I love Japan’s 祭 (festivals)—you can tell, by looking around my blog!)….but I would never live anywhere except Tokyo!

    Tokyo’s a big, convenient city…but it’s also safe and clean.

    >when I moved to Japan I was surprised to find that ATMs only functioned during banking hours. Surely their entire raison e’etre was to access banking facilities out of hours??

    A few years ago, ATM’s in Japan began 24-hour-a-day / 365-days-a-year service. But, back when you’re referring to, bankers would go home after confirming the balances in the bank’s records—having an ATM operating out of bank hours, it was felt, would make the records incorrect. So ATMs were only on when the bank was open.

    It never mattered to me. I seldom use ATM machines.

    >during the entire 90s credit cards were rare. Everything was cash.

    Although credit cards are used and accepted more these days…Japan is still basically a cash only society.
    Online shopping has increased credit card use. As for me, I only use my credit cards in emergencies (just like my ATM cards)…and I have yet to buy anything online (I don’t feel comfortable with the internet to shop online).

  57. Nalaka Gunawardene November 3, 2008 at 9:04 am #

    Hi, Thanks for comment left on my blog at: http://movingimages.wordpress.com/2008/11/02/encounter-with-anpanman-a-superman-made-of-bread/

    My recent visit to Tokyo was just for a few days, as all my visits seem to be…As you know, Tokyo in particular and Japan in general are too expensive for us visitors to just hang around without a purpose! I’ve been visiting Japan regularly since 1992 (mostly Tokyo, but also Toyama, Fukuoka, Yokohama, etc.) and it’s always a stimulating experience.

    One day, I hope spend time more leisurely in Japan and get a closer look at many things that I have only glimpsed on short visits. One day…

  58. tokyo5 November 3, 2008 at 10:15 am #

    Nalaka Gunawardeneさん、

    Thanks for commenting on my site. Please feel free anytime!

    I was surprised by the name for Anpanman in your country…”Gnana Katha Malliya“! I’m not even sure how to pronounce it! (Can you write it in katakana?? :) )

    >I hope spend time more leisurely in Japan and get a closer look…

    Yes, you need time to see all of Tokyo…and even more to see the entire country!! (I’m sure every country’s the same).

  59. Eric December 7, 2008 at 11:06 am #

    Hey Tokyo5. Thanks for commenting on my blog, Because it led me to your blog, and now I check it regularly. I added a link for it too in my favorite sites.

  60. tokyo5 December 7, 2008 at 9:04 pm #

    Eric…
    Thanks. I added a link to your site on my blog here, too.

    Please comment here often!

  61. Jeffrey December 10, 2008 at 3:28 pm #

    Hi!

    I have also added you to my blogroll.

    Have a great day.

    Jeffrey

  62. tokyo5 December 10, 2008 at 10:08 pm #

    Jeffrey…

    Thanks. I’ll add your blog to mine, too.

  63. Jeffrey December 12, 2008 at 9:42 am #

    Thanks so much for your comments on my blog.

    Yes, when I lived in Japan I visited Tokyo a few times and I was there again in 2006 as well as last year.

    Even though I live here in Korea, I haven’t visited Japan very much over the years.

    Hope life’s treating you well these days and thanks again for checking out my blog. I appreciate that so much.

  64. tokyo5 December 12, 2008 at 11:56 pm #

    Jeffrey…

    Thanks again for commenting on my blog.

    So you’ve been to Tokyo a few times! How do you like this city?

    What are some similarities / differences between Tokyo and Seoul?

  65. Tom Arrison December 31, 2008 at 9:02 pm #

    Just found your blog, looks interesting. Will be checking it out in the future. I lived in Japan in the late 80s and am still interested in things Japanese. Happy New Year!

  66. tokyo5 December 31, 2008 at 10:43 pm #

    Tom Arrison…

    Thanks for commenting.

    Do you have a blog, too?
    (I found your site: http://okonomibloggy.wordpress.com/
    You should update your WordPress profile so that when you comment on a blog, your avatar is a link to your site.)

    How long did you live in Japan? Which city? Tokyo?

    Do you live in America now?

    And Happy New Year to you, also.

  67. Tom Arrison December 31, 2008 at 11:45 pm #

    Hi–

    Think I updated the profile correctly.

    Lived in Japan in the late 80s, details in my reply to your comment on my About page. Also went to Japan on business pretty regularly in the 90s, but don’t have a professional connection currently. Try to get back every few years to visit friends, etc.

    Live in Arlington, Virginia.

    Tom

  68. tokyo5 January 1, 2009 at 1:18 am #

    Tom Arrison…

    So you’ve been to Japan a number of times.
    When was your most recent visit?

    Can you speak Japanese well?

  69. bocahbancar January 9, 2009 at 1:56 am #

    Hi Tokyo 5..

    Douzo Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu..

    You have a Japanese Wife, wow Sugoi ne..

    I just want to get scholarship n feel live in Japan..

    I’m very love Japan very Much..

  70. tokyo5 January 10, 2009 at 12:00 am #

    bocahbancar…

    >Douzo Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu..

    4-6-4-9“!
    Can you speak Japanese?

    >You have a Japanese Wife

    Yes, and we have three daughters.

    >I’m very love Japan very Much..

    Have you ever been to Japan before?
    What country do you live in?

  71. bocahbancar January 10, 2009 at 10:54 am #

    4-5-4-9..??What this, I have hear this but I’m not remember what it means..

    No, I just a newby in learning Nihongo, but I’ll study hard to can speak and write in Japanese..

    Wow..3 Daughter,,sugoi he he..

    I’m not ever to go to Japan, but I hope I can get a Scholarship to study S-2 in Social Work concentration..

    I live in Bandung Indonesia..??Do you know Indoensia..??Especially Bandung city..

  72. tokyo5 January 10, 2009 at 11:29 am #

    bocahbancar….

    >4-5-4-9..??What this

    Sorry. You said “Douzo Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu.” in your comment above.

    4649 is a kind of Japanese slang abbreviation for the same thing.
    “4649” can be read as “yo-ro-shi-ku”.

    In Japan, a kind of abbreviating with numbers is popular. They’re used to make phone numbers easy to remember or as a short-cut in writing letters and emails (only casually, of course).

    I just had an idea…I’ll write a post about this! ;)

    >No, I just a newby in learning Nihongo, but I’ll study hard to can speak and write in Japanese..

    Do you study in school?

    >Wow..3 Daughter,,sugoi he he..

    Thanks. I’m an over-protective father…they are my babies (even if they are teenagers now).

    >I’m not ever to go to Japan, but I hope I can get a Scholarship to study S-2 in Social Work concentration..

    ガンバレ (Ganbare)!

    >Do you know Indoensia..??

    Not well. I’ve visited Bali once years ago. That’s all I’ve ever seen of Indonesia.

  73. Mei_Chii January 12, 2009 at 5:42 pm #

    Did I make a mistake when I post my e-mail last
    time? Gomenasai if I ruined your site, big brother… but I do really interested in Japan! And the only hope I can see to have a chance to connect with the country I never been to is YOU

  74. tokyo5 January 12, 2009 at 9:02 pm #

    Mei_Chii…

    >Did I make a mistake when I post my e-mail last time?

    When you added your email to a comment (here: http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2008/07/17/mitama-matsuri/#comment-1272 ), I don’t mind…but for you there may be a danger of getting spam mail.

    >Gomenasai if I ruined your site, big brother…

    You didn’t ruin my site…but I’ve never been referred to as “big brother” by anyone except my sisters.

    >the only hope I can see to have a chance to connect with the country I never been to is YOU

    Not really, right? There are plenty of sites online.
    Anyways, if you have any questions, I’ll try to answer.

  75. tony9 January 13, 2009 at 9:42 pm #

    I haven’t accessed or used my wordpress blog in months. In fact I will be deleting it very soon.
    I haven’t had a chance to respond to you properly.

  76. tokyo5 January 14, 2009 at 12:52 am #

    tony9…

    Why are you deleting your WordPress blog?
    I think WordPress is quite good.

  77. Mei_Chii January 20, 2009 at 2:49 pm #

    good day, Big Brother!

    Am I right about what I read of?

    Are you really going to delete something?!

    but why?

    Um… was it bad if I call you ‘Big Brother?’

    from now on?

    you see, I don’t have

    a brother that was older than me ^__^

  78. tokyo5 January 20, 2009 at 11:07 pm #

    Mei_Chii…

    >Are you really going to delete something?!

    No. In that comment above, I was asking “tony9″ why he planned to delete his blog.

    >was it bad if I call you ‘Big Brother?’

    Kind of an odd feeling to be called that.

    >I don’t have a brother that was older than me

    I assumed you meant nothing by it, but…

    Anyways, how old are you? (If I may ask).
    Which country do you live?

  79. gerd January 26, 2009 at 12:59 am #

    Hello to you!

    Today we had a report on TV from Tokyo about an guy who is collecting manhole pics etc.
    So my question do you know him? Is a possibility to search him (his name is said in the movie….) or another way to contact him, perahaps the studio of the german TV called ARD…..
    Thanks for efforts in this point…..

    I will upload the movie to my stream at flickr

  80. tokyo5 January 26, 2009 at 1:48 am #

    gerd…

    Nice to hear from you again!

    >do you know him?

    No, I don’t know anyone who collects manhole covers photos. I do know that it is a hobby with a number of people (yourself included ;) )…but I don’t personally know anyone who collects them.

    >another way to contact him, perahaps the studio of the german TV called ARD

    I would probably have a hard time finding him (unless he has a blog or a website). Please tell me his name if you find it.
    But, yes, you should contact the German TV station. They could probably help you best.

  81. jplrosman January 30, 2009 at 2:42 am #

    Hey sorry but I’m curious what do you do for living?
    And thank you very much for the comment in my blog

  82. tokyo5 January 30, 2009 at 10:32 pm #

    jplrosman…

    I’m just a サラリーマン (salary-man).

    And thank you for visiting my site…please comment often!

  83. Mei_Chii February 3, 2009 at 2:10 pm #

    konnichiwa Oniisan!! ^__^

    I am from Philippines, are you familiar with my country? Or have you been here once?

    I am just used of calling my elder friends as Oniisan, (if they are men) and Oneechan (if they are women)

    I am kinda loner that’s why

    I want someone to bond.

    Have a nice day!! ^__^

    God Bless you, Oniisan!!

  84. tokyo5 February 3, 2009 at 11:11 pm #

    Mei_Chii…

    こんどは「お兄さん」?!

    Yes, I know the Philippines, of course.

    Do you study Japanese? Have you ever been to Japan? (You use Japanese-style email “smiley” and some Japanese words).

    If I was an Elementary school child, and you call me “Onii-san”…that’s alright.
    But in Japan, you don’t usually call an someone my age “Onii-san” (unless you are elderly aged).

    Just like calling me “Big Brother” in English…calling me “Oniisan” is kinda おかしい。

    Hope you don’t mind my saying.

    (I imagine you heard that in Japanese anime. Is that right?)

  85. Mei_Chii February 12, 2009 at 3:23 pm #

    You are right, Sir, I heard those terms in Japanese anime, and I think I am elder enough? I am 18 and will turn to 19 this year. May I know what do you want me to call you sir? If you don’t mind.

  86. tokyo5 February 13, 2009 at 12:07 am #

    Mei_Chii…

    >I think I am elder enough?

    Not “elder”…I wrote above:

    But in Japan, you don’t usually call an someone my age “Onii-san” (unless you are elderly aged).

    Elderly“. It means “old” (about 65 years old or older).

    >May I know what do you want me to call you sir?

    Oh, not “sir” either, please!
    Everyone who comments on my blog (who doesn’t know me personally) calls me “Tokyo Five”.
    How about that?

    But, actually, you don’t need to address me by any name at all. If you comment on this blog (and don’t address anyone by name), it can be safely assumed that you’re directing the comment to me.

  87. Mei_Chii February 13, 2009 at 6:04 pm #

    I am sorry for not

    using my common sense,

    Mr. Tokyo Five ^__^

    May I ask you something

    if you have a real

    Japanese blood friend?

    I want to learn more

    about Japan,

    if you don’t mind?

    Thank you

  88. Mei_Chii February 13, 2009 at 6:05 pm #

    I forgot..

    I greet you

    a Happy Valentines day!! ^__^

    thank you for

    clarifications

  89. tokyo5 February 13, 2009 at 10:44 pm #

    Mei_Chii…

    No need to apologize, of course.

    Yes, I have Japanese friends (and family).

    But if you want to ask a question about Japan to a Japanese person…there are plenty of blogs in English by Japanese people.

    I’m sure they’d be happy to answer any questions.

    Of course, you can ask me any question, if you want, too.

  90. Mei_Chii February 20, 2009 at 7:37 pm #

    May I ask you something, Mr. Tokyo Five ?

    Why did you become interested in Japan?

    I think there are lots of other countries,

    that I know you are interested as well,

    but I noticed that in your Blog,

    Japan is your main topic…

  91. tokyo5 February 20, 2009 at 11:09 pm #

    Mei_Chii…

    >Why did you become interested in Japan?

    I guess because it’s so different from America…and Japan is famous for Kabuki, Sumo, Geisha, Karate, Sushi, Ninja, Samurai, Hi-Tech, ancient traditions, etc, etc…

    And after I came here, I found it better than I had imagined.

    >I noticed that in your Blog, Japan is your main topic…

    Yes. Because I live here. Originally, this blog’s purpose was to keep my family and friends in America up-to-date with what’s going on in our side of the world…but I’m happy that many other people visit my blog (some regularly :) ).

  92. Mei_Chii March 4, 2009 at 6:33 pm #

    Good day Mr. Tokyo Five!

    I’ve been busy these past few days

    so it’s been hard for me to post comments

    here. How are you?

    I am doing fine here and

    I am currently looking for

    a stable job that will suit

    my chosen course, a teacher,

    but still a student in training, he he

    Thanks for answering my

    annoying questions, Mr.

    And I am thinking the same way, too.

    But I want to go to any western

    country, like America, or France!

    But my interest fell for England, ha ha

    Do you have any photographs of

    those places? Or, have you been

    there once? ^__^

    • tokyo5 March 5, 2009 at 1:11 am #

      >have you been there once?

      I’ve never been to Europe. But I’ve been to America, of course…I was born there!

  93. lvironpigs March 8, 2009 at 10:59 am #

    That’s interesting. “Tokyo five”. Nice stuff.

  94. lvironpigs March 8, 2009 at 11:02 am #

    My question is, other than Yakult Swallows and Chunichi Dragons, are they any other top level NPB teams who play in Tokyo?

    Do Yakult Swallows or Chunichi Dragons play their home games at Tokyo Dome?

    • tokyo5 March 8, 2009 at 8:20 pm #

      The Chunichi Dragons aren’t a Tokyo team. They’re the Nagoya Chunichi Dragons.

      The Tokyo Yakult Swallows‘s stadium is the Meiji-Jingu Stadium (owned by 「明治神宮」 (Meiji Grand Shrine)).

      The bigger Tokyo team plays at the Tokyo Dome. The Tokyo Yomiuri Giants.

      You know alot about Japanese baseball, huh?

  95. lvironpigs March 9, 2009 at 3:11 am #

    Only a little. I am trying to learn more. I write a little about Japanese professional baseball.

    My website backs a AAA team, the Lehigh Valley IronPigs. The Philadelphia Phillies are our Major League parent.

    I did an article recently about player salaries in Japan. AAA guys can do well to be signed by a Japanese team. Andy Tracy, the 2008 IronPigs MVP, played for Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles.

    Our closer last season, Matt Childers, signed to play for Tohoku Rakuten this season.

    Yokohama Bay Stars signed pitcher Les Walrond, one of our top guys last year, too this winter.

    This season, I expect the Phillies to send us J.J. Furmaniak, who played for Yokohama last season (not very well, however).

    Is Yomiuri Giants the only Tokyo team in the top league?

    Do you go to baseball games often? Do your wife and kids like baseball too?

    Do your wife and kids have a favorite player?
    Do you have a favorite player?

    How popular are the Yomiuri Giants in Tokyo compared to say the Yankees in New York?

    (you are interesting to me because you are an ‘average family guy’)

    • tokyo5 March 9, 2009 at 9:56 am #

      >Is Yomiuri Giants the only Tokyo team in the top league?

      The Tokyo Yakult Swallows are in the same professional league as the Tokyo Giants.
      The Giants are an older team…and seem to be more popular.

      >Do you go to baseball games often? Do your wife and kids like baseball too?

      No, sorry, I’ve only been to a few baseball games in Japan (and only twice in America, as a child).
      I’m not really a baseball fan.
      I’m interested in the World Baseball Classic because it’s international…like the Olympics or Soccer’s World Cup.

      My wife and kids have even less interest in baseball than me. But they’re keeping up with the “WBC” for the same reason as me.

      >Do your wife and kids have a favorite player?
      Do you have a favorite player?

      Probably Hideo Nomo…or a current one: Ichiro Suzuki.

      >How popular are the Yomiuri Giants in Tokyo compared to say the Yankees in New York?

      Oh, you’re asking the wrong person for that kind of info. Are the Yankees real popular? ;)
      I guess among baseball fans in Tokyo, the Giants are very popular.

      >you are interesting to me because you are an ‘average family guy’

      Thank you.
      I hope you continue to visit and comment on my blog (even though I’m not a 野球ファン (baseball fan)).

  96. lvironpigs March 9, 2009 at 3:38 am #

    Oh yeah, do you and your family have a favorite team?

    What is Yakult Swallows vs Yomiuri Giants like in Tokyo?

    What city do Hanshin Tigers play in?

    • tokyo5 March 9, 2009 at 10:13 am #

      > do you and your family have a favorite team?

      We don’t really support any team. But, if I had to choose, I guess the Yomiuri Giants since they’re our local team.

      >What is Yakult Swallows vs Yomiuri Giants like in Tokyo?

      I guess there’s some rivalry since they’re both Tokyo teams. But the Hanshin Tigers are the Giants‘s biggest rivals. (A Tigers vs Giants game is Japan’s underdog team vs the strongest team).

      >What city do Hanshin Tigers play in?

      They’re the Osaka Hanshin Tigers.

      People in Osaka are more emotional than Tokyoites. And the Hanshin Tigers‘s fans are famous for being rabid! :)

      After a win, the Tigers fans jump into a nearby river. It’s a tradition with their fans.

      The also say that the reason the Hanshin Tigers haven’t won a pendant since the 1980’s is because of the “Curse Of The Colonel“.
      After their last pendant win in the ’80s, the fans were jumping in the river…and someone threw a Kentucky Fried Chicken lifesize “Colonel Sanders statue into the river.
      (All KFC restaurants in Japan have a Colonel Sanders statue in front).

      They haven’t won a pendant since.

      Also, in Japan, all imported sports are called by their foreign name (ie: basketball, dodgeball, volleyball, tennis, etc)…except baseball.
      “Baseball” is called 「野球」 (Yakyuu) in Japan.
      This is because baseball was introduced to Japan from America in the 1940’s (when America was Japan’s enemy) so they didn’t call it by the English name—and still don’t.

  97. mycaboodle March 9, 2009 at 11:10 am #

    Hi there, Im very new to WordPress hence a newbie to this blogging community. Im searching for new blogs to read here on WP and found yours :-) Ive always been intrigued with Japan since little and hope to visit one day IF i can drag my husband with me first :-D so I hope to visit and learn more of Japan through your eyes & your words for the time being.

    • tokyo5 March 9, 2009 at 11:15 am #

      Thank you.

      Please visit my site often…and comment anytime.

      Do you have a blog? What’s the URL?

  98. lvironpigs March 9, 2009 at 4:09 pm #

    Thank you so much Mr. Toyko Five for your answers to my questions.

    I put up a post just now (I am waiting for Japan-Korea match) to celebrate the Tokyo Five at my website

    “Culture Outside The Park – Tokyo Five”

    http://www.lvironpigs.wordpress.com

    I will visit you again. Lots of people who go to our local stadium, Coca-Cola Park, are not “baseball fans” but they have a great time anyway.

    I am a sports fan but I find it interesting to talk to people who are not necessarily baseball fans about baseball, too!

    My article encourages my audience to come visit you as well!

    PS – I am 40. When I was a kid, I liked KISS, too.

    • tokyo5 March 9, 2009 at 10:01 pm #

      Thanks for the mention on your blog.

      You were a KISS fan? I was a KISS fan since I was eight years old…and still am. ;)

  99. lvironpigs March 9, 2009 at 5:57 pm #

    “Players Pay While Waiting To Play”

    This one thanks you Mr. Tokyo Five publically at my site for answering my baseball questions.

    I think I will follow Japanese pro league this season because, as I said, two IronPigs players are in Japan this season. Plus we get guys coming back from Japan. Our rival, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees, have a Japanese pitcher, Kei Igawa.

    At $ 4,000,000 per year Igawa makes a ton for a AAA player (his contract with NY Yankees is guaranteed)

    I have enjoyed Far East portion of WBC and thank you for visting my site to start with.

    I will stop in and say hello throughout the WBC and indeed, the NPB season…

    • tokyo5 March 9, 2009 at 10:03 pm #

      These days many Japanese are playing for the U.S. MLB (Major League Baseball), huh?

  100. lvironpigs March 18, 2009 at 9:20 am #

    Yes, more and more all the time. And you find a few in the minor leagues as well, although, for the most part, the Japanese are mostly in the Majors.

    Koreans and Taiwanese can be found in minors because they can make more there than in their home countries.

    Japanese players are paid pretty good. The Japan Central and Pacific Leagues pay the best outside of the Major Leagues from what I can see from my research.

    AAA players can come to Japan and do very well compared to what they would make in the US. Two guys from my hometown team Lehigh Valley IronPigs signed to play in Japan this year

    Les Walrond – Yokohama Bay Stars
    Matt Childers – Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles

    Walrond is listed for 6000 man yen at japanesebaseball.com and, in reality, he would be lucky to get 1500 man yean to play in AAA.

    I have a few articles looking at Japanese and Korean salaries for foreign players.

    The WBC got me to look and see what the top Japanese and South Korean guys get.

    Do you know anything about the supposed sensation Roberto Pettagine created in Japanese public a few years back with his 7 plus oku yen contract he signed?

    • tokyo5 March 18, 2009 at 10:05 pm #

      >Do you know anything about the supposed sensation Roberto Pettagine created in Japanese public a few years back with his 7 plus oku yen contract he signed?

      No, I’ve never heard of him. But that’s alot of money.
      ¥7億 (¥700,000,000) = about US$7.1 million.

      BTW, how do you know numbers in Japanese?

  101. lvironpigs March 19, 2009 at 8:37 pm #

    I only know about Japanese money from researching players’ salaries.

    Japanesebaseball.com is an excellent site that lists players’ career teams, statisitics, and salaries.

    I am an old mortgage banker so the salaries interest me (and my audience for that matter).
    I have worked on a few loans for pro athletes in my time…

    Anyway, after I got a hold of salary in Japanese money I went to some sites that converted money.

    That’s how I came up with 1 oku yean = $ 1.0 million dollars roughly.

    The Japanese baseball site explained 10000 man yen equals one oku yen.

    • tokyo5 March 19, 2009 at 11:03 pm #

      Do you know any Japanese baseball terms (like “Yakyu”, “nighter”, “Dai-league”, etc.?

  102. lvironpigs March 19, 2009 at 8:41 pm #

    JAPAN 5 CUBA 0

    This is a great result! Of course, if Japan do not win I look stupid because I formally picked them.

    I also based my selection on strong pitching – thus far Japan have made me look smart (even if they are having a hard time with the Koreans lately)

    Now Japan play South Korea – AGAIN.

  103. lvironpigs March 20, 2009 at 4:11 pm #

    Japan 6 South Korea 2

    Exciting game. Four runs last two innings breaks tie for Japan.

    Japan vs Venezuela in Finals of 2009 WBC

    If Japan win, I should look fairly smart in the baseball pundits world!

    Domo = thank you, correct?

    Domo Nippon = thank you Japan?

    Are Japanese people excited to be in WBC Final?

  104. j March 20, 2009 at 7:06 pm #

    Bobby is totally Japonized(^O^)

    • tokyo5 March 20, 2009 at 8:06 pm #

      Well, I have been living in Japan since 1990 after all.

  105. j March 21, 2009 at 7:34 am #

    Not that that’s a bad thing!

    • tokyo5 March 21, 2009 at 9:13 pm #

      >Not that that’s a bad thing!

      What’s that?
      “Living in Japan”? No, I think living in Japan is great!

      or “being ‘Japanized'”? I suppose it’s only natural when you live in a country for many years for it to change you.

  106. lvironpigs March 22, 2009 at 3:04 pm #

    South Korea 10 Venezuela 2

    Chang Yong Lim of Tokyo Yakult Swallows got the last two batters out.

    Late night for me my friend.

    Japan vs United States tomorrow.

    United States pitching has been weak, but Japanese batting has not been strong.

    Japanese pitching has been very good (that is why I picked them to win the tournament coming in) so we will see what happens…

    Domo Arigato means thank you very much?

  107. lvironpigs March 24, 2009 at 4:05 pm #

    JAPAN 5 SOUTH KOREA 3

    “Emperors Continue Reign”

    is my article at lvironpigs.wordpress.com

    Great big bow from the IRONPIGPEN to Japanese baseball, the rightful champions of the world on this late evening for me!

    Bow to the Japanese people as well because, hey, why not.

  108. lvironpigs April 20, 2009 at 9:39 am #

    Hello Mr. Tokyo

    I have not been able to stop by in a while. Spring training was very busy and so was the start of the season. Lots of players moving around to keep track of…

    IronPigs got a new pitcher a little while ago who used to play in Japan. Cedrick Bowers.

    We have three players (Tracy, Furmaniak, Bowers) now who used to play in Japan.

    So, how are your kids. Kids in America are almost finished with school for the summer. Is that the way it works in Japan, off for the summer?

    • tokyo5 April 20, 2009 at 9:41 pm #

      >So, how are your kids.

      Fine, thank you.

      >Kids in America are almost finished with school for the summer.

      Already? It’s only April?

      >Is that the way it works in Japan, off for the summer?

      In Japan, schools have a summer break.
      But not till late-July. Spring-break just ended.

      In Japan, the school-year just started this month (around April 8).
      Summer break isn’t the end of the school-year…Spring-break is.
      (Students in Japan have homework to do over Summer holidays).

  109. lvironpigs April 21, 2009 at 12:31 pm #

    American kids are done for the summer at the end of May (some will go for first week of June) and then won’t go back until September.

    Homework over the summer? Wow.

    Glad I am old!

    Our new President wants to extend the school year. Not by a little, either. Kids love him by and large. I wonder how they feel when they figure out what his educational plans are…

    In America, it usually goes elementary school, junior high school or middle school, and high school before college.

    What is it like in Japan and where are your three at?

    • tokyo5 April 22, 2009 at 1:16 am #

      >done for the summer at the end of May…and then won’t go back until September

      Over three months?
      When I was a kid in America, I seem to remember Summer holiday was about eight or nine weeks from June to September…and even that was probably too long!

      Japanese schools have Summer holiday for about four or five weeks from late-July until the end of August. With, as I mentioned above, alot of homework.

      >What is it like in Japan and where are your three at?

      American schools (at least when I was a kid) have grades 1-5 in Elem School, grades 6-8 in Jr High, and grades 9-12 in High School…with no school uniform.

      In Japan, Elem School is grades 1-6, Jr High is three years and called “grades 1-3″ (same as 7-9 in U.S.) and in High School, it’s also “grades 1-3″ (equal to 10-12 in U.S.).
      (Actually, the grades here are called: 「小1-6, 中1-3, and 高校 1-3」).

      In public schools here, students begin wearing a school uniform at Jr. High.

      Japanese school used to have school for six days a week. School on Saturdays stopped when my oldest was in 1st grade.

      Now my kids are in grades Jr High 1, Jr High 3, and High School 1…in the U.S., it’d be grades 7, 9, and 10.

  110. john June 7, 2009 at 9:13 am #

    I came across your website and it is a great one.
    I live in the netherlands but i have been 4 times to japan.
    Mostly because i love anime and gatchaman like you, i will sent a pic sometiems of my collection.

    • tokyo5 June 7, 2009 at 10:36 am #

      >I came across your website and it is a great one.

      Thank you.
      Please visit and comment often!

      >I live in the netherlands but i have been 4 times to japan.

      Really? When did you visit? Which cities? For how long?
      Please tell me about your trips to Japan.

      >Mostly because i love anime and gatchaman like you, i will sent a pic sometiems of my collection.

      OK, please do. Do you have photos online? Tell me the URL.
      I’m not really a big anime fan. I only started watching some of them because of my kids. When I was a kid myself, I liked cartoons, of course…and some of the ones I watched were Japanese (such as Gacchaman).

      Did you see my Gacchaman postal stamps?

      http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2009/06/07/stamps/

  111. mike June 11, 2009 at 7:35 am #

    Hello from New York. I like reading about Japan.

    • tokyo5 June 12, 2009 at 1:45 am #

      Thank you. Please visit (and comment on) my blog often!

      I saw your site. You know alot of sports trivia!
      What’s your favorite sport?

      You should add a Sumo trivia question! ;)
      For example….
      Q. What are the two ways for a sumo-wrestler to lose a match?
      A. Either by stepping outside the ring or by touching the ground with any body part (except the feet).

  112. aaroninjapan09 June 26, 2009 at 1:24 am #

    WOW awesome blog. Can I just ask you why and how you managed to make it in Japan?

    • tokyo5 June 26, 2009 at 1:42 am #

      >WOW awesome blog.

      Thanks.

      >Can I just ask you why and how you managed to make it in Japan?

      In 1990, I had a chance to come to Japan for two years with my, at that time, employer.
      I met my wife here, loved Tokyo and decided to stay.

      When I got married, I was able to get a “Spouse Visa” that needed to renewed every three years so I could live here.
      But a number of years ago I became eligible for the “Permanent Resident Visa”, so I never had to even think about it anymore. It never expires.

      When and why did you come to Japan? How long will you stay?

  113. proffybean July 2, 2009 at 6:11 am #

    Fantastic blog! Hey, is Starblazers still big in Japan? Best anime evah!

    • tokyo5 July 3, 2009 at 2:34 am #

      You mean 「宇宙戦艦ヤマト」 (“The Space Battleship ‘Yamato’“) as it’s known in Japan.

      No, it’s ended years ago. Maybe they show re-runs on cable TV though.

      The man who drew that anime is 松本零士 (Leiji Matsumoto)…he also designed the waterbus “Himiko“, which is a ship that takes people on cruises around Tokyo Bay. I took a photo of the ship and put in in this post:

      http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2009/06/15/gundam/

  114. Yokosukabase.com July 4, 2009 at 5:07 pm #

    I like your blog. Check out http://www.yokosukabase.com for up to date base information, news, stories, pictures, videos, classifieds, events and much much more!

    • tokyo5 July 4, 2009 at 8:55 pm #

      I have been to that U.S. Naval base for the “Friendship Day” when they open the base to the public and have a festival.

      It was interesting. It almost felt like I left Japan and was back in America.

  115. kim's scrapbook August 14, 2009 at 4:07 pm #

    i am so glad to have found this blog
    and thank you for your interesting interaction on mine
    i am learning some really interesting stuff as a result of your comments and my further research
    always a good thing

    thanks

    • tokyo5 August 14, 2009 at 4:45 pm #

      Thanks.
      Comment anytime.

  116. The Ruling Numerator August 24, 2009 at 1:55 am #

    A few questions, if you don’t mind me asking, what made you travel to Japan? What about the language? What interested you in Japan in the first place?

  117. tokyo5 August 24, 2009 at 2:14 am #

    >A few questions, if you don’t mind me asking, what made you travel to Japan?

    The job that I had at the time offered me a chance to work at their Japan branch for two years.
    I couldn’t pass up a chance to see such an exotic foreign country for free.
    I was only 20. I had never even been outside of the East Coast of the United States before that.
    I didn’t even have a passport until then.

    >What about the language?

    I couldn’t speak a word of Japanese before I came here.

    >What interested you in Japan in the first place?

    It was so completely different from the small town in Florida I lived in. Even the writing system is completely different.

    But before I was offered the chance to come here, I never thought much about Japan.
    I wasn’t interested in anime, video games, martial arts, etc very much.

    But, when I lived in America, if someone mentioned Japan…I thought Ninja, Samurai, and Kabuki were cool.
    (I have been a fan of the American rock band KISS since childhood…and they have many Japanese influences.

    How about you? Have you ever been to Japan?

  118. The Ruling Numerator August 26, 2009 at 6:10 am #

    Wow. How’d you manage to learn Japanese? Wasn’t it difficult getting around?

    I’ve never been to Japan, but I’ve been watching anime for the past 4 years. I find the language fun to learn and the culture intriguing. I’d love to visit someday. ;_;

    • tokyo5 August 26, 2009 at 10:45 pm #

      >How’d you manage to learn Japanese?

      Studying. And hearing it everyday.

      >Wasn’t it difficult getting around?

      It was at first. Especially when I first came to Japan…there was almost no English signs anywhere.

      >I find the language fun to learn

      Do you study Japanese?

      • The Ruling Numerator August 28, 2009 at 6:48 am #

        How long did it take you to get the hang of it? Were you tutored?

        I apologise if my persitent questioning bothers you.

        No, I don’t study Japanese. I try to teach myself, though. The amount that I’ve learnt so far has been from anime. I can understand and construct simple sentences. But nothing advanced. I have no clue when it comes to writing and reading.

      • tokyo5 August 29, 2009 at 1:38 am #

        No, I didn’t go to any language school.

        So, you’re trying to learn Japanese?
        Please feel free to write comments in Japanese on my blog!

      • The Ruling Numerator August 30, 2009 at 5:34 am #

        I am trying, but all I’ve learnt how to write so far, is the character for ‘a’. ¬_¬ I’m a lazy learner. And studying science subjects doesn’t allow much leisure time at all. -_-

      • tokyo5 August 30, 2009 at 1:32 pm #

        Oh, I meant you can write a message in Japanese using alphabet letters, if you want to.

      • The Ruling Numerator August 30, 2009 at 11:53 pm #

        Sokka. Wakarimasu.

        ~ Make sense, I believe? :?

      • tokyo5 August 31, 2009 at 12:35 am #

        >Sokka.
        Souka ;)

        “Nihon-ryouri ga suki desuka?”

      • The Ruling Numerator August 31, 2009 at 6:16 am #

        Hai, wakarimasu = understand, but how do I say “I’ve taken note of what you’ve said”… Or something to that extent.

        Nihon-ryouri te nani?

      • tokyo5 August 31, 2009 at 11:58 am #

        >how do I say “I’ve taken note of what you’ve said”…

        How about: “I see. I’ll memorize it.” in easy Japanese?
        (Naruhodo. Sore wa oboeru)

        >Nihon-ryouri te nani?

        “Japanese food”. (Another way to say it: “Wa-shoku”)

  119. seabreeze August 26, 2009 at 8:49 am #

    I’d like to jump in here w/a comment tho the question about getting around is not directed at me. I have seen/known foreigners without a speck of Japanese knowledge riding the trains/subways/buses (usually with maps tightly gripped!) and not looking lost at all, and getting to their destinations (I assume). Then, on the other hand, there are Japanese people who come from outside the Tokyo area who need to be met at stations, guided, hand held to their taxis to take them to wherever they want to go. Some won’t even consider the trip to the “big city” without a friend or relative. It does depend on the person, of course, but don’t let the language barrier stop you from exploring Japan on your own (let’s say starting with Tokyo first…) Most train stations have English information available (not the buses, tho) and people are usually more than happy to direct you in the right direction.

    • tokyo5 August 26, 2009 at 10:49 pm #

      I have had foreigner visitors in Tokyo who are lost ask me for directions many times.
      My impression is that foreigners in Japan get lost often unless they’ve been here awhile.

      But, it’s true, as you said, that Japanese people are friendly and are usually very willing to help anyone who asks them.

  120. mike September 19, 2009 at 12:56 am #

    I was always interested in Japan. Nice blog.

    • tokyo5 September 19, 2009 at 1:29 am #

      Thanks.
      Please visit my blog often.

  121. kyonkyon October 12, 2009 at 8:37 pm #

    Hello!
    I have been not used to wordpress yet and am looking for something interesting blogs.
    Why do you like Japan? I want to live in the other countries…

    • tokyo5 October 12, 2009 at 10:23 pm #

      Thanks. I saw your blog.
      Do you live in 所沢?

      I like Japan, especially Tokyo, because it’s clean, safe, punctual, has excellent service, food, and products, and there’s so much to do and see.
      It’s the best city, I believe.

      • kyonkyon October 13, 2009 at 9:44 pm #

        Thanks for your prompt reply.
        Yes, I live in Tokorazawa.
        Indeed, I feel Japan is still safe, every day I hear bad news at TV though. However many historical buildings are crashed and change to skyscrapers in Tokyo.
        I think we should treasure such beautiful buildings more.

      • tokyo5 October 13, 2009 at 11:17 pm #

        Yes, I was surprised to learn that the 歌舞伎座 in 銀座 will be demolished and rebuilt. :(

        I wrote a post about it last year (Click here).

  122. syying November 11, 2009 at 2:14 pm #

    Hello !!I’m from Malaysia!! I love Japan! gonna favourite your blog!I went for a student exchange programme to Osaka. I tried the kobe beef and it was wicked!! Im definitely going back to Japan! Cheers

    • tokyo5 November 12, 2009 at 12:40 am #

      >I love Japan!

      What do you love about Japan?
      Traditional culture? Pop culture? Food? Music?

      >gonna favourite your blog!

      Thank you. Please visit and comment often!

      >I went for a student exchange programme to Osaka.

      Really? When were you in Osaka? Did you visit the Tokyo area at all?

      >I tried the kobe beef and it was wicked!!

      Yes, it’s excellent!

  123. syying November 11, 2009 at 2:15 pm #

    sorry, forgot to put in my email. see u

  124. Anonymous November 11, 2009 at 6:59 pm #

    Greetings again Tokyo 5!

    I haven’t posted for awhile (I’m the marine researcher from Hawaii who debated with you on Sea Shepherd earlier this year), but I wanted to drop you a line just to see how you were doing. Hope you are well. I was a bit surprised at your background (as I only read it just now) but I think your story is beautiful and I only wish the rest of the world were as multicultural as you.

    I will drop you a line again (probably with Sea Shepherds new operations starting again) but I wanted you to know that I enjoyed our discussions and look forward to hear more of your viewpoints!

    • tokyo5 November 12, 2009 at 12:46 am #

      >I’m the marine researcher from Hawaii who debated with you on Sea Shepherd earlier this year

      OK. Thanks for visiting my site again.
      (Your Sea Shepherd comments start here).

      >I enjoyed our discussions and look forward to hear more of your viewpoints!

      Thanks. Please comment anytime.

  125. yukari January 11, 2010 at 12:30 am #

    Hi tokyo 5 !
    Nice blog.
    I was looking for ‘Samuel Falle’ and came to your blog.
    I’m so moved about the story. Amazing !

    From freeeeezing Sapporo.

    I live in Sapporo.
    Have you ever been to Sapporo ?

    • tokyo5 January 11, 2010 at 12:43 am #

      >Nice blog.

      Thank you. Please visit and comment often!

      >I was looking for ‘Samuel Falle’ and came to your blog.

      You mean this post I wrote here.

      >I’m so moved about the story. Amazing !

      Yes, I was amazed by the story too.

      >From freeeeezing Sapporo.
      I live in Sapporo.
      Have you ever been to Sapporo ?

      Yes, I’ve been to Sapporo twice.
      The first time, I went to the wonderful 「札幌雪まつり」 (“Sapporo Snow Festival“).
      Speaking of which, that festival should be happening in a couple weeks…right?

  126. yukari January 11, 2010 at 1:37 pm #

    Hello again !

    The festival will take place from February 5 to 11 this year.

    Snow statues are so perfect, which are made by
    the members of the Ground Self-Defense Force.
    Many thanks to them for making such elaborate work of art !

    • tokyo5 January 11, 2010 at 1:39 pm #

      Yes, it’s a great festival.
      And Hokkaido is beautiful.

  127. pongrocks February 2, 2010 at 6:03 pm #

    Greetings from Germany :)
    Just found your blog “by accident”. Really interesting to read for someone who has never been in Japan before. I have always been interested in Japan and it’s nice to read something about the culture and stuff like that. Hopefully I’ll be able to travel to Japan in the near future… But of course I’ll have to learn Japanese first… If I may ask, how good was your Japanese when you emigrated?

    However, really nice blog… I am glad I found it :)
    Have a nice day

    • tokyo5 February 2, 2010 at 8:31 pm #

      >Just found your blog “by accident”. Really interesting…

      Thank you! Please visit (and comment) often!

      >I have always been interested in Japan

      What about Japan are you interested? I’m just curious.

      >But of course I’ll have to learn Japanese first

      Are you studying Japanese?

      >how good was your Japanese when you emigrated?

      When I came here, I didn’t anything at all about Japan or the Japanese language.

      I just checked your blog. You’re twenty years old, aren’t you?
      I was that age when I came here…in 1990.

      Also, you listen to bands like Led Zeppelin and Lynyrd Skynyrd. You have excellent taste in music!

      > really nice blog… I am glad I found it

      I’m just wondering…how did you find my blog?

      • pongrocks February 2, 2010 at 10:21 pm #

        >>I’m just wondering…how did you find my blog?

        I was reading some stupid manga where mutsugorou appeared (didn’t know who he is), so I googled him… your blog was on the first page so that’s how I got here.

        >>What about Japan are you interested? I’m just curious.

        ah… that’s difficult to answer… I have always had interest in foreign cultures. The Japanese culture is very different from the western/German culture and that’s what’s interesting for me. In addition to that I kind of grew up with a lot of tv-shows and mangas from Japan… So I have always wanted to learn Japanese.

        >>Are you studying Japanese?

        nope and that is the problem. There is definitely no language course for Japanese where I live (countryside), so I tried to learn everything autodidactic. Didn’t work out. Japanese is very difficult to learn (at least for me) and just with books and computer software I became frustrated. I guess it’s easier with a proper teacher or someone who can at least help you out.

        >>When I came here, I didn’t anything at all about Japan or the Japanese language.

        that’s brave ^^ I don’t think I could pull that off. I figure you work(ed) for an international corporation or something like that, so you could get by with English, eh? Ah well, you don’t have to answer that, I am just a bit nosy ;)

        >>Also, you listen to bands like Led Zeppelin and Lynyrd Skynyrd. You have excellent taste in music!

        seems like you have an excellent taste in music as well :)

        p.s.: didn’t meant to write this much, sorry :)

      • tokyo5 February 2, 2010 at 10:33 pm #

        >I was reading some stupid manga where mutsugorou appeared (didn’t know who he is), so I googled him… your blog was on the first page so that’s how I got here.

        You mean the Japanese man who loves animals.
        I wrote this post.

        Which manga had Mutsugoro-san?

        >that’s brave

        Plenty of people visit Japan without being to speak the language. (Granted most don’t immigrate here as I did).

        I bet most foreign tourists in your country (Germany) can’t speak German.

        >didn’t meant to write this much, sorry

        Certainly no problem.
        Please continue to comment!

      • pongrocks February 2, 2010 at 10:52 pm #

        >> Which manga had Mutsugoro-san?

        Oh well, it’s called Akumetsu. There were a few pages of parody about him and an actor who I can’t remember right now. However, I have read better mangas… Not really my genre and I rarely read manga nowadays. Can’t replace a real book after all. But maybe I am just getting to old for this stuff :)

        >>Plenty of people visit Japan without being to speak the language. (Granted most don’t immigrate here as I did).

        Yeah, I was talking about immigrating. Of course most tourists don’t speak German who come to Germany ^^
        When I was younger I always wanted to immigrate to Japan. Well, it was more like a dream, you know ;). But I guess I should be happy if I find a job here in Germany and stop dreaming about some kind of one-way-ticket-adventure into the unknown.
        Yeah, I am really getting oooooold…. :)

      • tokyo5 February 2, 2010 at 11:08 pm #

        >I am really getting oooooold

        Aren’t you only twenty?
        As I said, I was that age when I moved here.

        Why do you want to emigrate from Germany?

  128. pongrocks February 2, 2010 at 11:25 pm #

    >I am really getting oooooold
    >>Aren’t you only twenty? As I said, I was that age when I moved here.

    I was only joking ;) Yes I am twenty but sometimes I catch myself thinking like an old man… :)

    >>Why do you want to emigrate from Germany?

    another difficult question… Maybe I want to see something different once in a while, a change of pace… or maybe I just have itchy feet :) You know, I read all these stories which played in Japan when I was younger and so I guess I just want to see Japan with my own eyes for once. I agree, emigrating may be a bit exaggerated. On the other hand, I don’t really know why I should stay here, there’s just not a lot which binds me to Germany but a lot more to see outside :)

    • tokyo5 February 3, 2010 at 12:09 am #

      My story was a bit different.
      When I was 20, I never intended (or even entertained the idea) of living anywhere except America (where I was born).

      But the company I worked for at that time had a branch in Japan and they asked me if I’d work there for two years.
      I thought it’d be fun to see Japan so I agreed…and found I like Tokyo better than anywhere else in the world.

      • pongrocks February 3, 2010 at 12:20 am #

        That’s a nice story :)
        oh well, maybe I’ll try to get in some kind of student exchange for a year or something like that. why not combine the useful with the joyful :)

      • tokyo5 February 3, 2010 at 12:24 am #

        Yes, if you’re a student and you want to see Japan…you should try to homestay in Japan.

  129. Metal Misfit March 18, 2010 at 10:16 am #

    What is it about Tokyo (and Japan in general) did you like so much that you wanted to live there? Did the company at least set you up with a place to live and such things? I’d have been completely scared being a stranger in a strange land.

    Why don’t you ever travel to America? Do you ever get to see your family?

    Do you miss the United States?

    • tokyo5 March 18, 2010 at 11:39 am #

      >What is it about Tokyo (and Japan in general) did you like so much that you wanted to live there?

      In Japan, I appreciate the quality of service, the excellent food, the polite people, the traditional culture and the very modern culture…

      In Tokyo in particular…it’s a huge metropolis, but it’s very safe.
      It’s ultra modern…but still has so many ancient traditional Japanese festivals, temples, etc.

      The trains are clean, safe, and affordable…and extremely punctual.
      You can do or buy nearly anything you want conveniently in this big city.

      >Did the company at least set you up with a place to live and such things?

      Yes. Now I’d be fine of course…but when I first stepped off that plane in Tokyo twenty years ago, I would have been helpless if I had to settle myself in living accommodations!

      >I’d have been completely scared being a stranger in a strange land.

      It was new, and shocking and at times unsettling. And of course I became “homesick” after not long.
      But now Tokyo has become “home”.

      >Why don’t you ever travel to America?

      So expensive! The five of us took a holiday in Florida in 2004. We’d love to do it again…but the cost for five plane tickets and everything else that goes with a overseas vacation makes it difficult.

      >Do you ever get to see your (U.S.) family?

      Unfortunately, not often.

      >Do you miss the United States?

      When I first arrived, I did. But I’ve been here so long that America now feels like a foreign country to me.
      Fun to visit…but now America is a “culture shock”. :)

  130. sy ying March 19, 2010 at 10:23 pm #

    Hello! I forgot to reply your message. lol,after 4 months only i realised i have actually posted something. I didnt get a chance to visit tokyo, only osaka. Love the warm toilet seats during the winter. awesome! I was in osaka when i was 16years old,tht makes it the year 2008.

    • tokyo5 March 19, 2010 at 10:29 pm #

      You visited Japan when you were only 16 years old?
      Was it a student-exchange?
      How long did you stay?

  131. SYYING March 19, 2010 at 10:26 pm #

    I would love to visit tokyo, but only through couchsurfing. A place where ppl are happy to host someone. Must be fun to eat fresh seafood everyday eh? See you!

    • tokyo5 March 19, 2010 at 10:31 pm #

      Which country are you from?

      >Must be fun to eat fresh seafood everyday eh?

      Not only seafood…but any type of food is available in Tokyo. And it’s all excellent!

  132. yuliana March 29, 2010 at 11:05 pm #

    Hello tokyo5 … very nice blog…
    Your stories about Japan and its culture are very interesting.
    I’m going to go to America for studying but now am thinking about changing my transit ticket so that i can visit and stay in Tokyo before leaving for America.
    The problem is that i know very little Japanese. I read that you came to Japan at very young age. Would you please share any tips of communicating in Tokyo? Can i rely on my English there?

    • tokyo5 March 30, 2010 at 12:28 am #

      >very nice blog…
      >Your stories about Japan and its culture are very interesting.

      Thank you.

      >I’m going to go to America for studying

      What part of America are you going to? What are you going to study?

      >visit and stay in Tokyo before leaving for America.

      How long would you plan to stay in Tokyo?

      >Would you please share any tips of communicating in Tokyo?
      >Can i rely on my English there?

      It’s certainly easier to get around Japan if you can read / speak Japanese…but you can manage on English, especially just for a short visit.

      Most Japanese can’t speak English, but larger hotels and places where international tourists go have staff that can speak English.

  133. yuliana March 30, 2010 at 10:59 am #

    >What part of America are you going to? What are you going to study?

    Perhaps Seattle … but if i get the Fulbright, i’ll follow their decision …
    I’m going to study IT.

    >How long would you plan to stay in Tokyo?

    I’ll stay several days in Asakusa and go around there as an individual traveller.
    Can i reach Asakusa by using Tokyo metro line? And what is the difference between express line and limited express? How do you catch a limited express train?

    > but you can manage on English, especially just for a short visit. Most Japanese can’t speak English, but larger hotels and places where international tourists go have staff that can speak English.

    Thanks so much … feel relieved to hear that … hope i can visit Asakusa historical area, Ueno park & Tokyo National Museum, and Akihabara electric town without a good Japanese skill :)

    • tokyo5 March 30, 2010 at 4:57 pm #

      >Perhaps Seattle …

      How long will you stay in America?
      What country are you from?

      >I’ll stay several days in Asakusa

      You’ll be able to see the Tokyo Sky Tree.

      >Can i reach Asakusa by using Tokyo metro line?

      Yes, the “Asakusa Subway Line”, and “Ginza Subway Line” both have a station at Asakusa.

      >what is the difference between express line and limited express? How do you catch a limited express train?

      “Limited Express” stops at more stations than the “Express” train.
      You can catch the Limited Express if you’re at a station that one stops at and by checking the train timetable.

      Are you wondering how to get from the airport to Asakusa?

      > hope i can visit Asakusa historical area, Ueno park & Tokyo National Museum, and Akihabara electric town without a good Japanese skill

      I’m sure you can.

  134. yuliana March 30, 2010 at 10:07 pm #

    >How long will you stay in America?

    About 1 year to 2 years, depend on my study progress…hope the “culture shock” and “homesick” will stay away from me :)

    >What country are you from?

    I’m from Indonesia. That’s why i desire so much to experience developed countries.

    >You’ll be able to see the Tokyo Sky Tree.

    That’s great, hope i can see it in person.
    Tokyo Sky Tree was the post i read when i arrived at your blog – a post that made me want to read your entire posts.

    >Are you wondering how to get from the airport to Asakusa?

    Yeah, i’ve never been in Tokyo or any place in Japan before. This’ll be my first experience.

    Thanks for your help and information. I really appreciate that.

    • tokyo5 March 31, 2010 at 1:30 am #

      >hope the “culture shock” and “homesick” will stay away from me :)

      You’ll probably feel culture shock and homesick at some point during that time.

      When I first came to Japan, I did. (And then when I visited America in 2004, I felt culture shock there!)

      >I’m from Indonesia. That’s why i desire so much to experience developed countries.

      Will it be your first time in a foreign country?
      America is quite different from Indonesia.
      And Japan is different as well.

      >That’s great, hope i can see it in person.

      But it won’t be completed until the end of 2011.

      >made me want to read your entire posts.

      Thank you.

      >Yeah, i’ve never been in Tokyo or any place in Japan before.

      I recommend you take the “Keikyu” train line from the airport to Asakusa.
      You don’t need to spend extra money on the “NEX” train or anything.

      Just take the “Limited Express” on the Keikyu Line from the airport and change to a local train at Aoto Station (or Ueno Stn) and go to Asakusa Station.
      It’s about an hour-and-a-half.

  135. yuliana March 31, 2010 at 10:57 am #

    >Will it be your first time in a foreign country?

    Yes. I’ll give it all i’ve got to face the differences.

    >But it won’t be completed until the end of 2011.

    If there’s a chance, i’ll to go to Tokyo again :)

    >I recommend you …

    Thank you. I’ll remember that when i arrive at the beautiful city where you live.

    • tokyo5 March 31, 2010 at 11:33 am #

      >I’ll give it all i’ve got to face the differences.

      I’m sure you’ll enjoy both Japan and America.

  136. Fernando Martinez May 27, 2010 at 7:22 pm #

    Hi,Great site this.
    Tokyo has to be impressive.
    Great culture and great people.
    Very good interview with Lydia Criss.
    Thanks.
    Fernando Martinez
    http://www.kissarmyspain.com

    • tokyo5 May 28, 2010 at 11:02 pm #

      >Hi,Great site this.

      Thank you.
      I looked at yours too. It looks very interesting…unfortunately, I don’t understand Spanish.

      >Tokyo has to be impressive….Great culture and great people.

      Yes, Tokyo is wonderful.

      >Very good interview with Lydia Criss.

      (You mean my interview with Lydia Criss, here:
      http://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2010/05/23/lydia-criss/ )
      Thanks.

  137. ndrjaotwrediscovered June 18, 2010 at 6:54 am #

    Wow, this site is really cool! I learned a lot about Japan. I am hoping that I am able to do something like this too someday. =]

    • tokyo5 June 18, 2010 at 9:42 pm #

      >this site is really cool!

      Thank you very much.

  138. hakuchin August 15, 2010 at 12:54 am #

    Hello there :)
    I just bumped into your site by accident and wanted to tell you that I really like it ^^ I like the simple design and also about what you post, it’s really interesting and informative! I’m actually new to worldpress so I have just one post and a design up, but I hope I will learn more soon hehe. It must be hard sometimes to have three teenage daughters, huh? Since I’m female myself I can imagine how hard it can be sometimes hahaha.

    Have a great night time over there! ^^

    • tokyo5 August 15, 2010 at 1:20 am #

      Yes, having kids (especially more than one or two) is a lot of work.
      But worth it…they are my treasure.

      Thanks for commenting on my blog. Please comment anytime!

      • hakuchin August 15, 2010 at 1:53 am #

        I figured that much :) I’m also no only child and I think my mother had a hard time with my brother and me but she always keeps telling us that we are her treasure :)

        Sure, I would love to :)

      • tokyo5 August 15, 2010 at 2:35 am #

        What made you become interested in Japanese culture (as it says on your blog)?

      • hakuchin August 15, 2010 at 2:57 am #

        well, when I was young I watched some japanese animes in TV and so I got interested in Anime and Manga. Some time later I began to be interested in Japan all over, like, the food or the history or the people in general. I think Japan has many things that western countries are missing, for example keeping everything clean. If you go to public toilets or places, everything is just dirty and stinks and in Japan it seems to be less. However, I fell in love with the language not too long after I got interested because the language is somehow more poetic than other languages and I like that. These are just some things of the whole though :)

        What made you decide to go to Japan and live there?

      • tokyo5 August 15, 2010 at 5:33 pm #

        > I fell in love with the language

        Do you study the Japanese language?

        >What made you decide to go to Japan and live there?

        I was given the chance to work in Tokyo for two years by the job I had in 1990…and I never left.

      • hakuchin August 15, 2010 at 7:05 pm #

        well, yes, kind of. I began studying by myself here and there some years ago but since I had to focus on english and french the last years I wasn’t able to learn much ^^ I just know a few things and some words. That’s why I like watching japanese TV series, doramas for example because I can understand things here and there ^^

        ah? may I ask which job you’re doing? I viewed your main page and there were a few interviews. Are you a journalist or something? :)

      • tokyo5 August 15, 2010 at 7:20 pm #

        >I viewed your main page and there were a few interviews. Are you a journalist or something?

        You mean these interviews.

        No, I’m not a journalist. My website is only a hobby.

        I work in a Japanese office. Maybe one day I’ll write a post about my job.
        Maybe.
        Basically, though, I don’t like to post much personal information on the internet.

      • hakuchin August 15, 2010 at 7:36 pm #

        >You mean these interviews.

        yeah, exactly ^^

        ah, so you’re an office worker ^^ yeah, I can understand that you don’t like to post much about personal things. Nowadays it can be quite insecure because of stalkers and people who do whatever. But sometimes it’s also needed I think :) But in a culture country like Japan there must be so many things to talk about that personal life seems like it isn’t needed in a blog ^^

      • tokyo5 August 15, 2010 at 11:59 pm #

        >I can understand that you don’t like to post much about personal things. Nowadays it can be quite insecure because of stalkers and people who do whatever.

        Or maybe I’m just paranoid. ;)

        Glad you understand, though.

  139. josh1340 August 15, 2010 at 8:04 pm #

    Great site. I’m glad that I stopped by to visit. I didn’t get to make it out to the festivities today, but there is always next year.
    -Josh

    • tokyo5 August 15, 2010 at 11:57 pm #

      >Great site.

      Thanks. But my blog has yet to be featured on the WordPress main page like your blog was.

      But please comment on my blog anytime.

  140. Pyrrho September 7, 2010 at 3:24 pm #

    Great site, love the KISS articles you’ve done. Keep up the work.

    – Pyrrho

    • tokyo5 September 8, 2010 at 12:58 am #

      Thanks. Please visit my site often and comment anytime!

  141. chosuncoreano1 March 5, 2011 at 3:57 pm #

    tokyo, that isn’t KISS character.

    • tokyo5 March 5, 2011 at 7:03 pm #

      >that isn’t KISS character.

      You mean that the Japanese kanji in my avatar doesn’t say “KISS”.

      I know that.

      It says “Power”. As I said in this comment that I wrote addressed to you, the band KISS uses that symbol as a “sub-logo” (for lack of a better term).

      It’s pronounced “Chikara”…and KISS even has a “Japan-only” CD titled Chikara.

      I notice you changed your avatar from the North Korean flag to a “Unified Korea” one.

  142. chosuncoreano1 March 6, 2011 at 11:56 am #

    I don’t buy ” Japan-only” CD titles. You know it looks and sounds gay.
    Korea was united for 5 thousand years before it was divided 60 years. I don’t believe Korea is divided so I stop using NK flag.

    • tokyo5 March 6, 2011 at 1:09 pm #

      >I don’t buy ” Japan-only” CD titles.

      I don’t care. I only mentioned it because you misunderstood what my avatar means.

      >You know it looks and sounds gay.

      Do you think that hurts my feelings? I could care less.
      I suppose you’re trying to get a rise out of me. It’s not working.

      If I was that type of person, I could easily upset you by saying something like “You’re jealous because there are many artists who love Japan. That’s why they’re are so many “Japan-only” tours and albums. And “Live in Japan” albums.
      I’ve never seen a “Live in Korea” album.
      Japanese culture and food is well-known and popular around the world. More so than any other Asian country.”

      But I’m not that shallow, so I won’t say such a thing. ;)

      Anyways, if you dislike Japan, quit visiting my blog. Your stress-level will decrease, I’m sure.
      You started this silly “debate” with you barrage of rude comments.

      Really though, I have no problem with Korea. And…the food is excellent.

      >I don’t believe Korea is divided so I stop using NK flag.

      Korea is divided. But I don’t understand why you used the North Korean flag in the first place if you’re from South Korea. Unless you were using it for some kind of “shock value”.

  143. Chris March 18, 2011 at 10:23 am #

    This seems like the best place on your blog to leave this question…

    During much of the recent earthquake coverage, I’ve seen people wandering the streets of Tokyo wearing surgical masks. This is not a new phenomenon, as I’ve noted it almost any time I see coverage of anything in any major Asian city. So what’s up? Is the air there that bad?

    • tokyo5 March 18, 2011 at 12:12 pm #

      Those aren’t actually “surgical masks”. And the air isn’t “bad” here (well, normally it isn’t. Not so easy to say after a nuclear plant meltdown :( .)

      But those masks can be seen worn be people of all ages in Japan all of the time…but especially in winter and spring.
      This is because there are three main reasons people wear them:
      One, if they have a cold or flu (they’re probably heading to or from a hospital or drug store in that case).
      Two, it’s flu season and they don’t want to catch it.
      Three, (this is why most people are currently wearing them)…it’s 花粉症 (“hayfever season”) and they don’t want to breath in 花粉 (pollen).

  144. Maria April 10, 2011 at 1:41 pm #

    Do you know kat-tun , AKB 48 , Arashi and Perfume ?? Tell me about them…Plz.,,, :)

    • tokyo5 April 10, 2011 at 3:25 pm #

      >Do you know kat-tun , AKB 48 , Arashi and Perfume ??

      Yes, I know of all of those Japanese pop bands.

      >Tell me about them…Plz.

      Are you a fan of J-pop? Maybe you know more about those bands than I do. ;)
      I don’t listen to much “pop” music.

      I’m sure that there are Wikipedia pages about each of them though.

  145. Maria April 10, 2011 at 1:43 pm #

    Plz tell me about JAPAN TSUNAMI and EARTHQUAKE!!

  146. gigihawaii April 18, 2011 at 3:07 am #

    When we visited Tokyo for 3 nights in 2008, we rode taxis most of the time. Just driving around the city, we noticed there were NO SUPERMARKETS like we have in the USA. Where do people get their groceries?

    But you are right about the trains. They are punctual and clean. We rode them to and from Ueno Zoo, but nowhere else because we can’t read Japanese restaurant and store signs and would get lost on foot.

    • tokyo5 April 18, 2011 at 11:29 pm #

      >we noticed there were NO SUPERMARKETS like we have in the USA. Where do people get their groceries?

      There are supermarkets and grocery stores all over Japan. Not only individual grocery stores…but also in the basement floor of many department stores, there are grocery stores.

  147. penman November 8, 2011 at 4:16 pm #

    Wow, you got a great blog here. I saw your blog on I’ve become my parent and I’m very happy to finally found a blog about life in Japan that doesn’t make me go o.O. May I link your blog from mine? I know my ‘invincible’ followers will love your blog.

    • tokyo5 November 9, 2011 at 1:16 am #

      >you got a great blog here.

      Thank you. Please comment anytime.

      >I saw your blog (from a link on the) “I’ve become my parent” site.

      That’s a fun blog too.

      >May I link your blog from mine?

      Of course. Let me know when you do. I’ll reciprocate.

      Thanks again.

      • penman November 14, 2011 at 5:56 am #

        I just made a link to your site. Thanks for approving my request.

      • tokyo5 November 14, 2011 at 7:11 pm #

        >I just made a link to your site.

        Thanks. And I just added a link to yours on my blog under the “Others” header.

  148. 9symphony9 August 26, 2012 at 7:27 am #

    Hello from New York.

    • tokyo5 August 26, 2012 at 9:26 am #

      Thanks for visiting my site!

      What part of New York are you from?

      • 9symphony9 August 30, 2012 at 11:22 am #

        I was born in New York City. I live on Long Island now.

      • tokyo5 August 30, 2012 at 1:29 pm #

        I’ve never been to Long Island. But I’ve visited Manhattan years ago.

  149. ガくせえです August 29, 2012 at 5:15 am #

    Born in Mississippi eh? I’m from Iowa! the heartland ftw! Japan must be more interesting though.
    By the way, thank you for correcting my mistakes. (: When learning you gotta take advice from wherever you can get it.

    • tokyo5 August 29, 2012 at 7:48 am #

      Iowa? I’ve never been there … but I like the heavy-metal band “Slipknot”, and they’re from there, I believe.

      You study Japanese in college, don’t you? What made you decide to learn Japanese?
      Do many American colleges offer Japanese-language classes now? Even in parts of America that don’t typically get visitors from Japan?

      • ガくせえです August 30, 2012 at 3:11 am #

        You’re not missing much…Iowa is full of corn, soybeans, and hog confinements. Not much else.
        Yes I’m studying Nihon-go in college. (: Had to change my whole class schedule around to fit it in once I found out my university offered it but totally worth it!
        I don’t think Japanese is that common anywhere in the midwest. I couldn’t speak for either of the coasts though.
        I decided to learn Japanese because ever since I was young, probably 8 or 9, it’s been my dream to study abroad there and finally my dream is on its way to coming true :D
        But enough about me, I followed your blog and can’t wait to read more. Living in Japan has to be different than the mundane day to day here in America eh?

      • tokyo5 August 30, 2012 at 9:28 am #

        >since I was young…it’s been my dream to study abroad

        Are you going to study in Japan?
        I hope your dream comes true.

        >I followed your blog and can’t wait to read more.

        Thank you. Please comment anytime.

        >Living in Japan has to be different than…in America

        Yes, Japan and America are quite different!

  150. Wikazuki September 6, 2012 at 10:42 pm #

    Hello from Italy…

    congratulations for your site, it’s so interesting!

    a day I hope to come in Japan to living, but in this moment I think will be only a dream…unfortunately!!

    • tokyo5 September 7, 2012 at 12:25 am #

      Thank-you. Please visit my site often and comment anytime.

      And maybe your dream will come true and you can visit Japan oneday.

      Actually, I’d like to visit Italy! My grandfather was Italian. He immigrated to America from Sicily.

      • Wikazuki September 7, 2012 at 3:50 pm #

        My grandmother was born in Sicily, it’s a very very beautiful land, the sea it’s wonderful. I live in Brescia, near Milan.

        However I continue to visit your site to feel the japanese atmosphere and to see your photos!

        Thanks for your “experience sharing”.

      • tokyo5 September 7, 2012 at 4:45 pm #

        >My grandmother was born in Sicily,

        Oh, we both have a Sicilian grandparent!

        > it’s a very very beautiful land, the sea it’s wonderful.

        I’d like to visit there…but I probably won’t get a chance to.

        > I continue to visit your site to feel the japanese atmosphere and to see your photos!

        Thank you. Please comment often!

      • Wikazuki September 7, 2012 at 4:55 pm #

        We have to exchange houses for you to visit Sicily and I to visit Tokyo…XD

      • tokyo5 September 8, 2012 at 12:30 am #

        Good idea! :D

  151. hollywoodsam August 6, 2013 at 10:33 pm #

    キシスが好きです. 十月私は日本へいきます.
    Second time there, first with a bub. Any suggestions for making life easier travelling around. The whole to pram or not to pram and breast feeding in public?

    あなた のblog おもしろい とおもいます. ありがとう.

    • tokyo5 August 6, 2013 at 11:35 pm #

      > キシスが好きです

      You mean 「キッスが好きです。」?

      >十月私は日本へいきす。

      For the KISS concert?

      >Second time there

      When did you visit Japan before? For how long?

      >first with a bub.

      Does that mean “baby” ?

      >Any suggestions for making life easier travelling around.

      How many adults? How many kids? How old is the baby?

      Will you be in Tokyo the entire trip?

      >The whole to pram or not to pram

      How big and heavy is the stroller?
      Unlike when my kids were babies, almost every train and subway station in Tokyo has escalators and elevators now… so I’d certainly use a stroller if I had a baby. A small, lightweight stroller would be best.

      >breast feeding in public?

      Not really done in Japan.
      There are baby changing / feeding rooms in some stores … but you should use a bottle in public.

      >あなた のblog おもしろい とおもいます.

      Thank you!
      How did you learn Japanese?

  152. Anonymous August 7, 2013 at 8:24 am #

    Thanks for the info. キッスが好きです. はいそうです.

    >For the KISS concert?

    Unfortunately not as they are sold out.

    We are two adults and a baby (10 months old in Oct when we will be there).

    He would still be small enough to carry in a baby carrier however, prams to have a lot of pro’s about them. Many of the large Japanese cities are busy, especially when using the subways. A stroller sounds like the way. We just didn’t want to take too many things with us, as it can be difficult to juggle a baby and a lot of baggage and alike. I just wanted to get as much advice before landing there. You know, be prepared.

    >How did you learn Japanese?

    I like to learn languages. I haven’t studied Japanese per se. Only through conversation and books. The internet helps too. We plan to move to Japan for a while in the near future.

    Why did you move to Japan?

    >Will you be in Tokyo the entire trip?

    We will predominately be in Osaka and surroundings. I haven’t been to Tokyo before. I would like to visit Tokyo this time. Maybe for a few days.

    ありがとうございました

    • tokyo5 August 7, 2013 at 10:13 am #

      >Unfortunately not as they are sold out.

      They’ve added two more Tokyo dates and I think there are still tickets available for their Osaka show too …

      >in Oct when we will be there

      Which dates in October?

      >We plan to move to Japan for a while in the near future.

      In Osaka?
      To teach English?
      Is your wife, by chance, Japanese?

      >Why did you move to Japan?

      The job that I had at the time in America was understaffed at their Tokyo branch and asked if I’d like to go to Japan for a couple of years …
      that was in 1990.

      >I would like to visit Tokyo this time. Maybe for a few days.

      You should definitely visit Tokyo if you have a chance!

      You could compare Osaka’s “okonomi-yaki” to Tokyo’s version, “monja-yaki”.

      >ありがとうございました

      No problem.
      Any more questions?

      • hollywoodsam August 7, 2013 at 3:26 pm #

        Oh…I see that there still tickets. I fly home the next day after the Osaka Castle show. I didn’t see them in Oz, I would consider seeing them in Japan totomo kakkoii desu.

        >Which dates in October?

        1st-22nd.

        >In Osaka?
        To teach English?
        Is your wife, by chance, Japanese?

        No. Outside of Osaka out in the country…Inagawa-cho. Very country!!!!!
        Yes.
        No, but she was mistaken for being Japanese because she had to declare Japanese food in Sydney, watashi wa meccha hen to omoimashita.

        >You could compare Osaka’s “okonomi-yaki” to Tokyo’s version, “monja-yaki”.

        Hai, okonomi-yaki oishii katta desu! Monja-yaki ga tabetai!

        I like Japan. It is good place to buy vinyl. I also plan to make some collages based on the the paper stock i return with from Japan.

        How do you find, as a westerner, living and working in Japan? You clearly speak Japanese and are more confidant there now than if you were to return to the states after so many years.

        Arigatou!

      • tokyo5 August 7, 2013 at 3:58 pm #

        >I would consider seeing them in Japan

        Tickets are a bit pricey … but a KISS concert is very exciting and this may be their final tour.

        >(October) 1st-22nd.

        Oh, a long holiday!
        Just sightseeing?

        >Outside of Osaka out in the country…Inagawa-cho.

        Why did you choose that specific area?

        >Yes (to teach English)

        Do you have a job lined up in Japan?

        >she was mistaken for being Japanese

        Is she of Asian descent?

        >Monja-yaki ga tabetai

        Do you know about monja?
        It’s very tasty!
        (What happened with typing in Japanese characters? ;) )

        >It is good place to buy vinyl

        Record albums?
        There are many record (and CD) stores in Tokyo!
        What kind of music do you listen to?

        >How do you find, as a westerner, living and working in Japan?

        I love Japan, especially Tokyo, very much!

        >more confidant there now than if you were to return to the states after so many years.

        Well, if I went back to America, it would certainly be a culture-shock and it would take a while for me to re-adjust!

  153. hollywoodsam August 7, 2013 at 11:06 pm #

    >Is she of Asian descent?

    のつまはくじんです. へんですね.

    >(What happened with typing in Japanese characters? ;) )

    めんどくさい!

    >What kind of music do you listen to?

    音楽が好きです

    ジャズと重金属 等

    キッスのレコードを日本にかいました.

    This is clearly a good exercise for my Japanese. It’s not easy.

    >Why did you choose that specific area?

    It’s the sister city of my city. On my previous trip to Japan we visited their schools, met their teachers and have a connection with the students and staff through my wife’s work. We also have Japanese friends near there. There’s history and a sister city bond. This year is the 25th year of the relationship between cities.

    Thanks again for your advice. Please have a look at what I do, if you haven’t already.

    Matta-ne.

    • tokyo5 August 8, 2013 at 12:19 am #

      >のつまはくじんです. へんですね.

      (That Japanese is a bit wrong … but you want to say “my wife is caucasian. Isn’t it strange (that she’d be mistaken for Japanese)?”. Right? )

      Yes, that’s odd. Where did that happen? Japanese customs?

      >めんどくさい!(Burdensome)

      You don’t have to write in Japanese if you don’t want to.

      >音楽が好きです

      I like music too.

      >ジャズと重金属

      You want to say that you like jazz and heavy metal.

      Did you use an online translator site?
      That means “heavy metal”… but not the music genre — that’s the scientific term for irons, copper, etc. ;)

      >キッスのレコードを日本にかいました.

      Which KISS record did you buy in Japan?

      >This is clearly a good exercise for my Japanese. It’s not easy.

      Good job too!
      Feel free to write more to me!

      >Please have a look at what I do

      On your blog?
      OK, I will.

  154. hollywoodsam August 8, 2013 at 7:55 pm #

    Kiss alive II kaimashita.

    What I was trying to convey was that I was lazy for not using kanji and hiragana. Romanji is easier. I am still learning. I should try to avoid reading and writing in Romanji if I want to get better at Japanese. Perhaps I will write again in the future only in Japanese as to practise more.

    Arigatou.
    .

    • tokyo5 August 8, 2013 at 9:16 pm #

      KISS Alive II !
      That was my first KISS record was I was a kid!

      Feel free to write in Japanese if you want to … but no pressure if you don’t.

      I looked at your blog. You’re an artist, aren’t you?

  155. hollywoodsam August 8, 2013 at 9:24 pm #

    はい .

    • tokyo5 August 8, 2013 at 9:28 pm #

      >はい (Yes)

      Paintings?

  156. hollywoodsam August 8, 2013 at 9:48 pm #

    >Paintings?

    はい. します.

    • tokyo5 August 8, 2013 at 11:00 pm #

      What kind of painting?
      Oil? Watercolor?
      Landscapes?

      I like art.
      I’m not artistic, but I like to look at it.

      What I really like are photographs.

  157. hollywoodsam August 9, 2013 at 8:29 pm #

    >What kind of painting?

    Search on my blog show you what kind of paintings I do.

    >KISS Alive II !
    That was my first KISS record was I was a kid!

    Kiss are quite big in Japan. That’s why you really moved to Japan isn’t it?

    >What I really like are photographs.

    Japanese photographers?

    Unless you have done post on it, could you name FIVE THINGS THAT YOU MUST SEE/DO IN TOKYO!

    ありがとう Edo-san

    • tokyo5 August 9, 2013 at 10:37 pm #

      >my blog show you what kind of paintings I do.

      OK, I’ll check it.

      >KISS…why you really moved to Japan isn’t it?

      Not only were they very popular here, they also have Japanese influences in their image.

      So, maybe subconsciously that is why I came here.

      HAHA! ;)

      >Japanese photographers?

      No particular photographers.

      But, as far as painters, I like Hokusai from Japan (he did ukiyoe actually), Monet from France, and Rockwell from America.

      >FIVE THINGS THAT YOU MUST SEE/DO IN TOKYO!

      That’s not so easy. There’s so much to see and do in Tokyo!
      Only five things?

      Sumo at the Kokugikan Sumo Arena,

      Walk from Tsukiji Fish Market → Ginza → Imperial Palace,

      Walk from Meiji Grand Shrine → Omotesando → Harajuku → Shibuya,

      Tokyo Sky Tree → Asakusa → Akihabara,

      Ueno

      There is SO much more to Tokyo than that but I think that’s a good start.

  158. Ben December 8, 2013 at 2:47 am #

    You’re a ****head!! Boy oh boy, Jose was sure right about you. He wasn’t even exaggeration about your lack of self esteem and and self loathing.

    Good riddance to traitors of your kind,America is a better place without you.

    A**hole

    • tokyo5 December 8, 2013 at 9:51 am #

      I edited your rude language. Your silly insults don’t offend me in the slightest … but children use the internet too.

      >Jose was sure right about you.

      You’re referring to the person who made ridiculous claims on a different post over two years ago and when I asked him for more details about those claims, he was never heard of again.

      >He wasn’t even exaggeration (sic) about your lack of self esteem and and self loathing.

      Actually he didn’t say that. You did. About two years ago.

      Sorry though, I’m perfectly happy. No self-confidence issues.
      You sound unhappy with your situation though.

      >Good riddance to traitors of your kind

      What “kind” is that? An immigrant?
      Plenty of Americans immigrate to other countries. And America is made of people who have emigrated from other countries.

      Do you understand what a “traitor” is? Immigrants aren’t traitors.

      >America is a better place without you.

      Is America a better place with you? How have you contributed?

      >A**hole

      Really? And how would you describe yourself?

      • KatiusciaP December 11, 2013 at 5:05 am #

        Hello, I’m Italian and I’m going to have a Holiday in Tokyo the 13rd of this month so I was browsing the web searching information and just find your blog.
        As I was looking for the more recent comments I just came to read the last and your response, and I don’t understand the stupid comment about your life.
        So I’m writing to you just want to say hi and how beautiful it must be to have a mix between two cultures so different.
        I live in Sardinia, one of the two biggest islands in Italy, and I have a japanese friend here who is married with a sardinian man, and they have a little baby called MiTo in romanji which is SardoJapan we said, half from Sardinia and half from Japan, and they are a really lovely family as I suppose you five are.
        I send you my best regards and wish you and your 4 happy holidays.

      • tokyo5 December 11, 2013 at 7:29 am #

        Thank you … and don’t be concerned about the comments from “Ben”.
        His nonsense is actually humorous.

        Will you visit Japan the day after tomorrow?
        Your first time here? For how long?
        If you have any questions about Tokyo, feel free to use my blog’s “Contact Me” form to ask me.

        What part of Japan is your friend from?

        By the way, my grandfather was Italian.
        He immigrated to America from Sicily. So I guess I’m 1/4 Italian!

  159. Jemma Jones February 1, 2014 at 6:56 am #

    Many thanks for following my blog “My TEFL Adventures (http://www.mytefladvetures.worpress.com)! I hope that you will enjoy my posts about my TEFLing adventures…

    • tokyo5 February 1, 2014 at 8:54 am #

      Sure! Your blog is interesting!

  160. Anonymous March 18, 2014 at 4:29 am #

    If I’m citing you what would I use as your name?

    • tokyo5 March 18, 2014 at 7:13 am #

      Where do you want to cite me?

      Please use my blog title / URL.
      Just as if you cite a dictionary or encyclopedia as a source, an author’s name isn’t necessary.

  161. johnwilsonbach March 20, 2014 at 10:06 pm #

    Where were you born in Mississippi? I lived in McComb as a boy, for a bit, and I taught in Yazoo City of awhile. Great site you have!! – JWB

    http://johnwilsonbach.com/

    • tokyo5 March 20, 2014 at 11:41 pm #

      I was born in Meridian, Mississippi. But I only lived there as a baby. I don’t know that state well at all…I have never heard of those cities you mentioned.

      I grew up in Florida. It’s been many years since I’ve been there though…so I don’t know Florida too well anymore either.

      Is Mississippi nice?

  162. isaac976 June 3, 2014 at 5:10 pm #

    Awesome blog Tokyo5. will visit more often now, I didnt know you had one..

    • tokyo5 June 3, 2014 at 5:54 pm #

      Thank you. Yes, please visit it often!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 234 other followers

%d bloggers like this: