October 24, 2012

Northern Exposure

 Very little to report today as I spent 10 hours on the train from Sapporo back to Tsunashima. Have to get back for my 3rd Gaba interview

When I woke in the morning, Bob had already left, so I gathered my things and set out to the train station early in hopes of finding special Hokkaido edition Kit Kats. Alas, none were found.

I did wander into a store that sold ninja throwing stars and dildos. I would have provided a picture of the two of them as they were quite comical next to each other, but this seemed like the sort of place where if you took pictures, they'd use the ninja stars on you. Or worse, the dildos.

In another store I found this shirt, which I considered buying for myself, but swoopy necks don't look great against my chest hair:

One of my favorite discoveries in the world of Japanese food has been the bakeries that fill the train stations and street corners. When you walk in, you grab
a tray and tongs and walk around, picking food to your heart's content.

Taylor demonstrates this process.
Well on my way back to Tsunashima, I came across these little guys. How could I possibly be expected to chow down on adorable Totoros and Dust Balls?

I set up a little office on the train and went to work on my latest animated Japanese sign. I'm not sure why they have all turned out to be so gruesome, but this one was just asking for it:

The original sign

That's it. That's all, folks. Hard to make sitting on a train all day and working on my computer that interesting. I did manage to complete 1/3 of goal 52 by finishing Norwegian Wood, and if you'd like to read the first book report I've written since 6th grade, click here.

I'll leave you with two observations about Japan as well as a snack review:

1. From 6pm-midnight, nearly every person on the train is asleep. Heads down, necks rolling, people are passed out. They work so hard here (some right up until midnight) that once they're on the train, it's lights out.

2. It is nearly impossible to find a trashcan in public. The only place you're nearly guaranteed to find one is a convenience store. Plenty of recycling, but no trash cans. Why? Good question! I have yet to get a solid answer. Someone said the Japanese take pride in bringing their trash home as it makes them more aware of their impact on the environment. Any transaction, however small, is accompanied by a receipt, a bag, and some sort of wrapping. Even for food. Another theory is that post 9/11, all trash cans were removed so as to avoid trashcan bombs. Apparently recycling bombs aren't a thing.

Because my Kit Kat hunt was such a failure, I decided I would try a new snack treat:
Pocket Oreos
First of all, I was not under the impression that Oreos weren't pocket sized. And secondly, for those with limited pocket space, Nabisco invented Mini Oreos. So then, why do we need this product?

Well I wish I had the answer, but as I am writing this, seconds after consuming this pocket sized nuggets, I have forgotten the experience. I have no recollection of the experience. It was weird to upload this photo because "what the hell are those? Is that my hand?" It was truly the most unmemorable food experience of my life. I will look back on this paragraph that I am writing now, about a snack food I apparently ate and think it was typed by someone else. When I hit "publish" on this post I will have already forgotten about this treat.

"But Nicky, aren't you aware of the psychological principal that states that the more you fuss about something and the more you recognize that you'll forget something, the harder it becomes to actually forget?"

Yes, I am. And yet I still know I will forget about this product.

Years from now, when I am telling my children about the trip I took to Japan and we somehow manage to reconnect with the Web 2.0 and pull up this blog, I will just assume there was some glitch and that photo surfaced from a different blog. Because, what the fuck was that snack?

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