Month: January 2010

  • Moving

    We’re almost certainly moving flat in the near future. This has come about rather suddenly; the leaflet about it appeared in our mailbox a couple of weeks ago, we went to see it a little more than a week ago, and we did the contracts on Saturday. The flat in question is in a danchi, […]

  • Gamers Help Haiti

    It is unlikely that anyone reading this blog is both interested and does not already know, but just in case I will mention it. DriveThruRPG is running an appeal to help Haiti. If you donate $20, which all goes to Doctors Without Borders, you get over 100 PDF gaming products, worth well over $1000. This […]

  • A Mystery

    If you read blogs and websites by foreigners (or former foreigners) living in Japan, there is one experience that you come across repeatedly. People who do not look Asian find that Japanese people will not speak Japanese to them, and insist on speaking English, even when the foreigner has displayed Japanese ability. If the foreigner […]

  • Fossil Viruses in the Human Genome

    There is a commonly-heard idea that Japanese science is not creative, although they are very good at refining other people’s ideas. This idea is commonly heard even in Japan; I’ve had to disabuse quite a few of my students of the idea. Including some of the ones working as research scientists. It is true that […]

  • ÅŒyama Kaidō: From Akasaka to the Tama River

    For my birthday last year, my sister bought me a book describing the course of the ÅŒyama Kaidō, with directions for walking it. The ÅŒyama Kaidō was one of the Edo-period roads of Japan (the Edo period is 1603-1868; the time when the Tokugawa shoguns ruled Japan from Edo, the city that later became Tokyo), […]

  • The Fox and the Jewel

    This book, subtitled “Shared and Private Meanings in Contemporary Japanese Inari Worship”, is the product of extensive research into the Inari cult in contemporary (early 1990s) Japan. The author spent a year at Fushimi Inari Taisha, the oldest Inari shrine and still, in some sense, the centre of the cult, and a further year at […]

  • Tamao Post Mortem

    As I mentioned on the Tamao page, the story has now finished, and I’m not currently planning to write a sequel. This is because I have lost money on the project; I have spent more on advertising it than I have received from readers, even leaving aside the fact that I would like to be […]

  • Christmas in America

    As I mentioned, we spent Christmas in California with my father. This was Mayuki’s first trip to the USA, although she went to the UK in summer 2008, and met most of the US family then. One thing we discovered is that it really is rather easier to travel with a very small baby than […]

  • Liquid Web

    This website, and all my blogs, are hosted by Liquid Web, a US web hosting company. They were recommended on an industry mailing list about six years ago, and so when I decided to switch to a host independent of my connection ISP, I signed up with them. They aren’t the cheapest option available (with […]

  • Server Change

    All my blogs have just been moved to a new server, to get access to newer underlying software. This should have made no visible difference, but people may have noticed the gibberish characters replacing quotation marks in Tamao. I’m working on getting that fixed as soon as possible, but if you spot any more problems, […]