Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Coming Into Kibukawa Station

02.10Kibukawa-Station-1, originally uploaded by sleepytako.

Monday, March 21, 2011


-Upload less photos.
-Take more time with the ones I do.
-Try to get some people into my shots.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Are you in Atlanta, GA?

I MADE A MISTAKE. The Auction was on SATURDAY the 1/19th. It's already over. From what I hear many pieces sold and a lot of money was raised.
Video about the show: 

In Atlanta this Sunday SATURDAY? Go and see one of my photographs, along with other wonderful shots by real photographers, in a silent auction at the Jennifer Schwartz Gallery in Atlanta. Of course the proceeds will be donated to Tohoku Earthquake Relief.

More information at the site below:

I'd like to thank my super good friend Hannah for getting my photo into the show. Hannah, you're the best. I hope to see you soon.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Earthquake Update - One week on.

It's been a week since the quake hit. It's been a fast, fast week.

A big heartfelt thank you to everyone who has been sending their thoughts, hopes and prayers to me and to all of Japan. It's been moving to see such an outpouring of love and caring.

On Yuko's advice, I've stopped reading Twitter all day and tried to do some other things with my free time. Sitting and watching the news nonstop can really make you feel pessimistic.

I've heard stories of people leaving, and families of friends here asking them to return. I'm having none of that. I'm staying, and that goes for my friends here too. We live here. Japan is our home.

I'm still posting and retweeting some good and some not-good stuff @sleepytako

To keep me busy though I started a new blog on Tumblr.

It's a simple project that I'm sure others have done. I'm going to list 100 things that I like about Japan and living here. The reasons why I'm staying. The reasons why I'm not leaving. So, check that out if you have time.


Monday, March 14, 2011

The Wait

It's absolutely insane. Going back to work and trying to act "normal" helps, but random things make me tear up. It's horrible being so close but so unable to help.

The wait is the worst part.

News fatigue has really set in. Yuko, my wife, is stronger than I am. also, She doesn't show her fears despite being sick for the last couple of days. I guess that's how people here deal with the stress. Looking around the school today and watching the teachers, I can see the same behavior. People acknowledging the earthquake happened but not discussing it.

Yuko is tired of all the media hype--which is no where the level of hype that is going on in the states. She doesn't want to see any more destruction. There's a point where the news we need to know ends and voyeurism beings.

"Besides NHK the other channels should go back to regular broadcasting." she said.

She fears the sound of the helicopters is drowning out the shallow voices of anyone trapped in the rubble. I gather that they banned most helicopters from the sky above Christchurch after the earthquake there.

In passing around the house I've been wondering aloud about volunteering and going up to the quake damaged areas. Last night Yuko said that she wants me to stay near the house.

"What would I do with out you around?" She wondered aloud fearing the consequences of a earthquake hitting Kansai. That really centered me. What would we do? What if I was at work? How would we meet up? What about our daughter Mia?

I'm at work. There's not much work however as the semester has just ended. I'm preparing a photo of mine to go into a silent auction for quake relief being held in Atlanta by a friend of a friend next Saturday. That's keeping me from reading my Twitter feed all day.

Today is White Day if you didn't know. It's the antithesis of Japan's Valentine's Day. On White Day boys give chocolates to the girls. I baked cookies. Sunday afternoon was spent in the kitchen of my friend's bar where they have an oven. I got away from the news and busied myself baking. It felt good.

Passing out the cookies today also helped. I made enough cookies, along with little bags with stickers that said "Happy White Day from David" in a cutesy font, to give to all the female staff in the school. Hopefully it cheered them up. A little happiness in this rough time. Giving is cathartic.

But, now that's over. Back to the long wait. The long silence.

I think I'm going to have a cigarette.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

My Twitter Feed

I've been tweeting a storm watch me on twitter, follow @sleepytako or read it on this post

Friday, March 11, 2011

Earthquake Update

Update 12:30 Japan time:
Yuko's extended family that lives in up in Tokyo seem to be ok. It's hard on them but they are ok. Our friends who live in the area also ok. One of them saw the big oil fire in Chiba in person. Again... we're all ok but worried about everyone else.

Live NHK from Japan:


Yuko, Mia and I are ok. Nothing broken in our house. I was at work at the time. In Nishinomiya Yuko didn't feel it and Mia slept through it. I was at work on the 3rd floor of a old school building. I had a class of 6 university students at the time. The quake lasted for a very long time. It felt we were on a boat. No rough shocks, just a gentle undulation. Like we were on a boat. It left people queasy but no one was hurt. All of our junior and high school students were sent home. Fortunately, there weren't many students there at the time in the first place.

Once more... we are ok, but there's really no telling how bad things are up north. I'm very worried about everyone up there and hope they are safe.

You can watch NHK via Ustream in Japanese here:

There's also the NHK World app for iPhones / iPod Touch that has the current NHK feed with an English live translator.

Google person finder: http://japan.person-finder.appspot.com/?lang=en 

Just in via Twitter NHK as I type this 19:54 JST:

In the disaster area Bic Camera is offering cell phone charging for free and all Suntory vending machines are now free.

Narita is not accepting flights.

The trains are not running in the effected areas.

The nuclear power plants are all safe now. No leakage.