Inconsistently crappy since 2003

Browsing Posts tagged Iron Chef

August Return to America


I think a lot of people have heard by now, but I’m coming back to the US in August.  No, not just for a vacation – for good!  OK not necessarily for the rest of eternity, but yes I am actually moving back to live in St. Louis for what will probably be a fairly long period of time.  Originally I was planning on coming back sometime in September or November, but it’s been pushed up to sometime in mid-August.  I’ll be working in St. Louis and slowly going back to school.  Just at night for now, but eventually going for a Master’s I guess.  That’s pretty much the main reason for the earlier than planned return, since the fall semester at the university I’m going to take classes at starts the last week of August.

It will be just short of the 4-year mark of when I moved out here after college to start working.  It’s been a long time since I’ve lived for real in the US, so while it’s hard to imagine that I’m going to be leaving Japan for good, I am starting to get excited about my return.  It’s going to be nice to actually drive places instead of doing a bicycle/walk/train combination.  It’s going to be nice to have an apartment larger than an American hotel room.  It will be great to see all the friends and family that I haven’t been able to see much over the past few years.  And it will be absolutely amazing to be able to get real American food every day.

I of course complain about things here in Japan a lot, but that’s natural.  Obviously I like living here, otherwise I wouldn’t have stayed for so long.  So yes it will be a big transition, but I think it’s about time.  Time to get more focused on my career and future, time to live a life that’s not as temporary as I sometimes see my current situation here in Japan.  I’m going to try and fit in a lot of stuff before I leave Japan, including of course seeing a lot of friends and people that have made Japan home.  I’m slowly working on my list of stuff to do/see/eat before leaving, a “bucket list” of sorts if you want to reference a terrible movie that I’ve never seen.  So far the list is fairly sparce, but it includes:

  • eat at an Iron Chef’s restaurant
  • go to a mahjong parlor
  • hit up the museums and zoo in Ueno
  • (maybe) check out the parasite museum in Tokyo
  • (maybe) visit another Asian country while I can get flights for less than $300
  • tabehodais: Top Run, FuuFuuTei, Moo Moo Paradise
    (of course not all in the same day, as impressive as that would be)
  • all nighter at the video game bar in Shibuya


A lot of the things on my list I’ve done before, some more than others, but I’m putting them on the list to make sure I can do it again before leaving.  So of course if you’re interested in hanging out before I leave and/or knocking off things on this list with me, let me know.  The next 3 months are going to go by a lot faster than I can even imagine, but I’m going to try to make the most of it.  America, I hope you’re ready for me to come back.

Addictions always come back

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I don’t know how this started, I think it’s because I have my free cable (uhh don’t read this Insight Communications), but I’m back in some kind of Iron Chef frenzy. I think I first got into this show back in high school, definitely before it was really popular. Heck, most of you probably know (or were even around) for when me and my friends went and made 2 of our own Iron Chef parody films. Good times. Anyways, time for a bit of a rant on how sweet this show is.

I’m not going to summarize the show that much, because by this day in age, I think most people have seen or at least know what good ol’ Iron Chef is about. I’m not sure exactly what I like so much about this show. I like some cooking shows already. I like Japanese TV (sometimes, although those variety shows get on my nerves after a while). I think maybe I just like goofy stuff and the theatrics of Iron Chef. Actually, I’m pretty sure that is a big part of it, because although I enjoy the actual cooking, the whole introduction part is always great to me. Seriously, I think this must be the greatest TV show ever created. Only some crazy Japanese guy could have thought to make a cooking show, make it with all the theatrics of like WWF wrestling or something, give the chefs goofy multi-colored costumes (remember Japan also made Power Rangers), give them rising platforms, lots of smoke, etc. This show is awesome. I could talk for a long time about how sweet the set is alone. It’s enormous!

OK, enough for now, this post is already dorky enough. And also I’m watching Battle Asparagus on TV right now.

Ramen = Late night entertainment

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On Tuesday night after dinner, I turned on the TV and started watching a drama-esque program. I didn’t know what I was getting into. And that was a 2.5 hour long “Fall Drama Special” about a guy who makes Ramen. That’s right, ramen. But not the instant just-add-hot-water kind of ramen, the actual restaurant ramen that I love here in Japan.

In summary, it was a horribly cheezy drama in the way that only Japanese TV can do it. Notable celebrity appearances were by the K1 guy (big bald guy with a mustache, don’t remember his name) and the Chairman from Iron Chef. Both played ramen shop owners. There was also a guy who I think is a comedian, but he was dressed like Solid Snake and gave weird kanji phrases to “describe the taste of” the ramen.

Weird Japanese TV…

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Well, I just finshed watching Battle Royale II. I’m not going to spoil it here for those who haven’t seen it but eventually will, but I will say that it was different from the first. It was a good movie, but things were different this time around…can’t say that this film had the same spark as the original. Fukusaku also has some pretty strong anti-American/anti war comments in the movie. Almost went a little overboard with them, at least I feel. Anyways, I’m sure within a few weeks after everyone is back in Bloomington, the HRC, my Japanese class, and anyone else who wants to will have seen the movie, either getting it from me or elsewhere, and I can say more about it then.

In the world, there is the winning team and the losing team. Which side are you on?

Tomorrow (er…tonight, I suppose) is New Year’s Eve. Hard to beleive it’s already that time again. I’ll most likely watch Iron Chef on TV, then go out somewhere.

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