Archive for the ‘Announcements’ Category

Foreign Food Matsuri

February 24th, 2009

Welcome to the February 2009 Japan Blog Matsuri! This month’s theme was Foreign Food, and we’ve got quite the blog smorgasbord from which to sup. We had a record-breaking total of 26 direct entries for this matsuri. If you add in the recommendations, it comes to a whopping total of 34 entries in all. Because some participants are inside Japan looking out at foreign food, whereas others are elsewhere looking at Japanese food as foreign, I’ve split the entries accordingly. Please make sure you don’t miss any of the entries! I’ve selected my own personal top 3 at the bottom of the post. When you’re done looking through the entire spread, head back here and vote for your own favorites in the poll. Read more…

Announcements, Customary Drivel, JBMatsuri, Photos

Japan Blog Matsuri: Foreign Food!

February 2nd, 2009

Deadline: Sunday, 22 February 2009, 11:59 PM JST

Well, folks, it’s February – time for another Japan Blog Matsuri. If you missed it, go check out January’s edition of the Matsuri, hosted by Bill Belew at the Rising Sun of Nihon, where 11 bloggers chimed in to answer the prompt “How will you resolve to make the most of your stay in Japan?” Hats off to Bill for doing a great job.

This month I am hosting the Japan Blog Matsuri. I announced the topic yesterday at the first online J-Bloggers Conference. (If you’re interested in joining the next conference, watch this space for details.) So, let it be known, the topic for the February Matsuri is: FOREIGN FOOD!

Anything related to FOREIGN FOOD is acceptable. We obviously prefer fresh entries over stale entries, but even old entries are ok. The theme is open to a bit of interpretation – and remember that you don’t have to be in Japan to participate! Anyone can participate. In fact, I want us to expand this time. I am hoping to have collected 20 or more entries for this edition. To encourage this, I am making an offer. Encourage your friends to participate, or submit entries from their blogs yourself, and I will leave a hat tip link to your own blog alongside that entry. If you submit your own entry and one other person’s entry (or persuade them to participate), you’ll have (up to) 2 links on the matsuri. It’s not much, but it’s something!

If you write a post and submit it to me by midnight of Sunday, February 22nd, I will include your entry in the compilation that will go up on the 24th. You can either email me directly (deas-at-rocking-in-hakata-dot-com) or submit your entry using the widget after the break.

Ok, go get writing! Go get your friends involved! Let’s build this thing!

The Japan Blog Matsuri was originated by Ken Y-N at What Japan Thinks, and has been revived by Nick Ramsay at the JapanSoc Blog. Read more…

Announcements, Culinary, Customary Drivel, JBMatsuri

Back to the Grind

August 26th, 2008

Hey all – I’m back from my insane almost month-long period of excursion after excursion. (Seriously…it’s the 26th and this is my first post this month…wacky…) I’m settling back in, getting over a wicked chest cold, catching up on my RSS subscriptions (and the Olympics and U.S. [Biden?] and World [Russia - Georgia] politics). MAN am I out of the loop. While I’ve been gone, some really cool stuff has been going on. The biggest deal would be the reintroduction of the Japan Blog Matsuri, started by Ken Y-N at What Japan Thinks. This month’s JBM was held by Shane over at the Tokyo Traveler, and was focused around the theme “Impressions of Tokyo“. Go check it out and start to think about whether or not you’d like to contribute to next month’s matsuri, which will be hosted by Tae Kim. I know I’m in. I just gotta find something coherent to write about. :-)

Also – I discovered this really cool tool cleverly called Keiken [Japanese] via Bryan at A Walk in Hachioji. (Curiously, the specific post I found it in is no longer on his page…but it existed in the RSS feed earlier…hmmm.) Here’s a map of my experience of Japan so far. It includes shenanigans from my time studying abroad all the way to present day. And while I’m sad that I’ve still not been to Okinawa, I think it’s sadder still that I’ve not been to Tokushima… Ha ha ha. I’m not sure if the Javascript is actually working, so I’ll try to replace it with a self-hosted image later. In the meantime, the link does work. ;-) How many points do you have? I’m currently at 107! Wahoo!

Announcements, Customary Drivel, JBMatsuri, Trips

April Japan Blog Matsuri

May 11th, 2007

Well, it’s finally time for the April edition of the Japan Blog Matsuri, so gather around the glowing monitor, kids. I’ve been granted the hosting privileges this month. For this month, I chose the theme of tourism due to the timing of the matsuri. Surprisingly, we actually did get a couple of good articles and posts about tourism and Japan. By a few, I mean precisely 3. Golden Week proved to be a bigger attraction than writing about tourism in the end, which took not a soul by surprise. I hunted around for some extra stuff to round out the collection and pulled out a few good, but unrelated posts. In then end, I hope you all enjoy the collection of links that this round has brought. Let’s hit it.

1) First up, a bit of shameful shameless self promotion. I wrote a piece on Virtual Tourism. In it, I talk about technologies that make it possible for us to take trips through the internet in lieu of real world travel. It’s really cool to see the possibilities that are just around the corner. Take a look to see what I mean.

2) What Japan Thinks has some interesting tourism-related poll results. What is it that homeward bound Japanese folks harbor hankerings for? He lists the foods that they want to eat the most after returning from an overseas trip. I learn so many things from this site. As a brief aside, I noticed one thing that did not make the chart. :-)

3) Next up is Japanprobe, which also featured some culinary curiousities related to travel – only these were Shinzo Abe Omiyage. That’s right, folks, there is a market for omiyage bearing the likeness of Shinzo Abe, the new Prime Minister of Japan. Is it weird? Yes. Would you not buy some just to prove that it exists? I would. It probably tastes the same as all other omiyage, but the novelty is worth it. Find out where to get your hands on some.

4) Alex over at Victory Manual has written a post about the lines between Tourists, Hosts, Overstaying Your Welcome. It’s similar to a classic “dating” and “after the honeymoon” pattern. Are you a long term or short term visitor to Japan?

5) He said I could, so I am including this vlog entry from Clay(tonian) – our friendly neighborhood Hopeless Romantic. In it he goes over his Golden Week shenanigans (like encountering a ginormous statue at a temple) and translates part of a theme song for our enjoyment. It’s worth a watch – if you like it, check out his other vlog entries – I hear his YouTube subscriber count continues to climb.

6) Around the corner at Q-Taro, Roy talks touring car dealerships for free stuff. Learn about how to make car salesmen seem like Santa Claus thanks to Golden Week.

7) Japanprobe proves that Cool Tourism is easy to come by in Japan. The bulleted list on the post says it all. It includes an earthquake simulator, an onsen for man’s best four-legged friends (dogs, people, sheesh), and a capsule hotel.

8) Japundit wrote about Travel During GW, and linked us to the Kyodo News Agency’s coverage.

9) Japanprobe pulls off a hat trick this month thanks to a video about Otaku Tourism, a quickly growing industry in urban Japan. Lately this “subculture tourism” has been attracting more and more foreign tourists. ‘Tis a fire that Japan intends to feed.

10) Lastly, Jon at Life is Random has put together a nice entry serving the dual purposes of recording his own personal Golden Week escapades as well as providing some cool random facts about his Golden Week to the reader. He took his free time as an opportunity to play pachinko, for instance.

There you have it folks, a few stretches there, but I wanted to include a couple of buddies. (If you host you’re allowed to do that. I’m pretty sure.) I hope that this month’s was as good as last month’s – I’ve got to say that Bill did a nice job, even though his oyaji gag made me wince. For those who missed them, here are links to the first, second, and third Japan Blog Matsuris. That ought to do it for this month.

It was not what I expected, but I want to offer my thanks to those that I drafted as well as the few who actually submitted your entries. There is no word yet on a volunteer for next month. If you’re stoked about hosting the matsuri and you have an idea for a theme floating about in your head, please contact Ken Y-N and volunteer. If we can get more people to participate, we’ll have greater quality in the articles, and a tighter Japan-blogging community. I’ll retire from the soapbox now, and let you read in peace. Thanks for stopping by my site. Feel free to leave me links back to your sites in the comments. I’m always looking for new online haunts. :-) That’s what this whole thing is about, after all.


Announcements, Customary Drivel, JBMatsuri

Blog Matsuri Deadline!

May 7th, 2007

This is the LAST DAY you can submit entries for the Japan Blog Matsuri. Please refer to the original posting for instructions. Entries are encouraged, because this month looks pretty light so far. Tell your fast-typing friends. (Actually, tell everybody.) Remember, the point is to help us in the Japan blogosphere discover one another’s blogs. Please feel free to submit anything related to this month’s theme: TOURISM. ;-)

Announcements, Customary Drivel, JBMatsuri

10 Days Left!

April 27th, 2007

Please get your entries in, everyone. Start writing and cranking out the matsuri love. I want to make this a great Japan Blog Matsuri! Here’s a link to the original post, and a quick and dirty breakdown for the link-through lazy.

April Japan Blog Matsuri

Theme: Tourism

Deadline: Monday, May 7th (due to Golden Week holidays)


    Official Page
    Widget @ WJT
    Email to deas (at) rocking in hakata (dot) com

Remember, tangentially related things are fine. Creative angles are encouraged! Multiple entries are ok for this one, but don’t submit blogspam. :-P It will be weeded out. Tell your Japan-related blogging friends about it and try to get everyone involved. The more the merrier, guys. :-)

Announcements, Customary Drivel, JBMatsuri