This category contains 16 posts

Not Wholly Whole: Hafu Film Review

//By Keith Ikoma// On May 31st, I attended a showing of the film Hafu in Akita City. Some background about me: I am half-Japanese, and Hafu is about half-Japanese people and their experience in Japan. However, I am from Vancouver, one of the most multicultural cities in the world. There is a significant Asian influence … Continue reading

“Necessary” Errors Which Prove Otherwise

//By Jessie Fast// A few of my neighbors and I have been keeping a book club since last summer. We choose which book to read on rotation, determined by a sophisticated game of junken (Japan’s rock-paper-scissors). When it recently became my turn again and my rock beat everyone else’s paper, I remembered a book I … Continue reading

Never Let Me Go

//By Jessie Fast// Title:  Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro The Plot: Kathy grows up in a strict, structured school called Hailsham somewhere in the English countryside. Along with her best friend Ruth, their friend Tommy, and others, the children live rather blissfully without much thought to the future besides what their guardians tell them … Continue reading

The Top Ten Things the Internet Does Wrong: Part Three

This is the third part of a five-part series. The first part can be found here, and the second here. //By Andrew Lewis// 6. Public Discourse The best thing about the internet is you can find anything you want, whenever you want it. The worst thing about the internet is that you can find anything … Continue reading

The Top Ten Things the Internet Does Wrong: Part Two

This is the second part in a five part series. The first part can be found here. //By Andrew Lewis// 8.  News It was not so long ago that news anchors were wringing their hands about this new “web-log” thing, where irresponsible people without journalistic integrity could write and post an article about something in … Continue reading

The Top Ten Things the Internet Does Wrong: Part One

This post is the first of a five part series. //By Andrew Lewis// Houston, Texas. Oil derricks.  NASA.  Failed sports franchises.  Harbor.  Mesquite barbeque.  Rodeo.  East Coast comedians’ punchlines.  Yes, my hometown is well known for many things.  It’s not just the city all the big nationwide tours skip over.  It’s also the city trying to … Continue reading

People Who Eat Darkness

//By Jessie Fast// One of the first stories I remember hearing when I came to Japan was about a gaijin English teacher who had been murdered and put in a soil-filled bathtub in Tokyo, where the police found her body. I don’t know why this story stuck with me over the many months between then … Continue reading

The Great Gatsby

// by Jessie Fast // I’d been waiting so long to see The Great Gatsby that I did not hesitate to catch Toho Cinemas’ late showing on opening day. I’d read the book in high school, bought the soundtrack when it was released online, and have been a fan of director Baz Luhrmann’s style since … Continue reading

Sound of Followers: Live Music in a Laid-Back Setting

// by Katie Yantzi // In a dark and cool brick building, tucked away in Yokote’s Omori town, the soothing notes of a guitar are punctuated only by the concertgoers who have begun to sway and sing along, and the outbursts of the drunken man at the front. “Sakura, Sakuraaaa –” “ –YEEEAAAAAAAAAAAHH!!!”  This inebriated fan throws … Continue reading


// By Jessie Fast // I realize that one of the reasons Japanese people are generally so thin is because they eat next to no bread. Occasionally a melon pan, the rare sandwich or two. I see the wisdom of their avoidance of gluten-based carbs. However, that doesn’t change the fact that I love bread … Continue reading