Author Archive

A Humble Request: 頼むよ!お願いします!

April 19th, 2011

For anybody who still follows this blog: first, bless your soul; second, I’ve got a favor to ask.


I’ve got a super selfish request to make. My fiancee and I entered a contest a few weeks ago, but didn’t make the final cut. We were super bummed about it. The contest was for free wedding photography from a pretty awesome (read: we cannot afford her even in our dreams) international photographer. Lo and behold, we got an email last weekend: one of the final couples dropped out and we were the next couple on the list (read: almost made the cut the first time)! We accepted the offer to join the contest in progress. And now we need your help big time!

The hitch? We didn’t get added until all the other couples had already been gathering votes for a full week. We are in serious underdog mode here, but I am hopeful that we can win this thing with the help of you all.

The other hitch? They made voting for this thing a rather convoluted process. You have to like the photographer on Facebook (and continue liking them until all the votes are tallied), then use the contact form on the photographer’s blog to register your vote. They’ll apparently cross check the names with the “Like” page on Facebook to check for duplicates. This makes voting really hard for our internet illiterate (and computer illiterate) family members and friends, many of whom don’t even have FB accounts in the first place. Sigh. This is where you come in.

You may have already watched the embedded YouTube video above. If you have, awesome! If not, you can also check out this quick screenshot walkthrough.

Step 1: LIKE the photographer and go to her website. (Use the button right on the blog if you’re already signed into Facebook to cut down on hassle.)

Step 2: Click the contact link at the top of the page, add your name and email address in the appropriate filters, and then write something like “I am voting for couple #6!” in the message box. Hit submit, and bring us one tiny step closer to overcoming our underdog status.

Note: for your vote to be counted, you must continue to “like” the photographer until the votes have been counted, at which point, be my guest and “un-like” them…but for the love of pete, wait until your vote has been counted – May 2nd or 3rd should be safe. (Some have liked, voted, and un-liked in quick succession, which undoes their vote. Noooo!)

I don’t know if we will win, but I know that the other couples are probably just as driven as we are if they realize the incredible value being offered here, and are still probably pretty far in the lead considering that they’ve had a full week to gather votes while we didn’t even know we were in the running. Maybe you can make up the difference! Thanks very much to those of you who’ve liked the photographer on Facebook already and who have commented elsewhere to let me know you’ve voted for us. You guys rule. Please spread this around and get as many willing people as possible to vote for couple number six. I really want to make my fiancee smile by telling her we won. Man…how cool would that be?!

- Deas

PS – If you can think of any other way I might be able to gin up votes, please tell me. This means a lot to me, and I’m clearly not too proud to beg.

Customary Drivel

All’s Well

November 19th, 2010

Well, folks, I think it’s just about time to hang up the keyboard here at Rocking in Hakata. I suppose that the giant drop-off in posting meant I was de facto retired already! My wonderful time in Japan on the JET Program is drawing to a close, and the last year has been filled with amazing developments and adventures. Unfortunately, they’re not really fitting into the old blog style of introducing glimpses of interesting bits and pieces related to Japan anymore. And due partially to my professional commitments and partially to all of the changes, I really don’t have as much free time as I used to. (Ok, actually, I have virtually no free time. Ha ha.) In short: there are several excellent reasons that my last post was in April. But I won’t list them all here.

Thanks very much to everybody who tagged along with me. I’ll keep this blog up for a little while, but will eventually move on to another home on the world wide web. If you’re looking for me on the internets, I’ll post again once I know where I’m heading and have a URL for you. In the meantime, you can find me on Facebook or posting random things on Google Buzz.

Oh – and if anybody is looking for an awesome (and modest!) employee to do Japan or Japanese-related things circa August 2011, please get in touch! And if you know anyone looking to hire, feel free to point them to my Linked In profile. I’m good people. :-D


Customary Drivel

Majestic Sakura

April 11th, 2010

Outta Town

March 26th, 2010

Hey everybody – this is just a heads-up to let you know that I’ll be in Beijing for just over a week. It’s my first time going to mainland China. Catch you on the flipside. :-D

Customary Drivel, Trips

Canned Yakitori

March 24th, 2010

Say whaaat? That’s right. Yakitori, in a can. (It was put there by a man in a factory downtown.) I guess I’m still working the whole yakitori thing out of my system. I saw this next to the canned tuna and crab at the store, and had to try it. Surprise, surprise. Tastes just like you’d imagine.

……assuming that you imagine it’d taste pretty bad. It’s just wrong.

Culinary, Customary Drivel, Humor

Deas in the News

March 14th, 2010

One week ago today, I gave a talk about my monitor tour at an International Fair in Imabari City. The local media came out and did a story on it. Here’s my amateur slapdash attempt at translating the newspaper article that was published in the morning edition of the Ehime Newspaper last Tuesday. Many thanks go to reporter Fumihito Tawa for coming out and covering the event. I’d also like to proffer my thanks to the photographer who snapped that incredible “A-ha!” finger pointing gesture. The team made me look good! :-D Click on the thumbnail for a larger view.

Caption: Mr. Richardson (right), an American whose theme was using foods like yakitori in a plan for promoting tourism in Imabari City.

Enjoy Imabari Even More

Increase the amount of foreign language information on websites to promote short-stay food tourism

Proposed by a sightseeing foreigner

Let’s rediscover Imabari’s tourist attractions from a foreigner’s point of view. The International Fair hosted by the Imabari City International Exchange Association (ICIEA), took place on the 7th at the JA Saisaikiteya farmer’s market, where the townspeople were able to learn about local attractions as well as ideas for drawing foreign tourists to the area.

The ICIEA received a request from the city, and so set out on a project to have 7 foreign residents undertake monitor tours from June of 2009 to February of 2010. The fair was designed to showcase the results of these tours for the people of Imabari CIty.

Deas Richardson (26), an American assistant language teacher, said of food tourism with a focus on Imabari’s famous yakitori, “Of course it is not really a reason unto itself to visit, but it could easily be a reason to stop (here) on the way to another destination.” He expanded upon his ideas, putting emphasis on using short term stays centered around culinary attractions to bolster tourism to the area.

He also raised the example of websites which anyone can edit (wikis) and are frequently used by foreign travelers, citing the fact that the city’s English and Chinese language information was scarce. He encouraged the audience, saying, “The Japanese page introduces yakitori, but there is no explanation in English or Chinese. Since anyone can contribute information as a volunteer, I would really like us to try to do so.”

Mr. Martin Samoy (44), a Belgian photographer who has lived in Imabari for 15 years, presented some of his pictures of scenery around the city. Mr. Samoy’s acquaintance and coworker, Ms. Mizumi Ide (5), also of Imabari, said “I was moved by the way that he photographed landscapes so familiar and ordinary to Japanese people with a fresh perspective.”(Fumihito Tawa)

Culinary, Customary Drivel, Media, Photos, Unsolicited Commentary, 日本語