Monday, July 28, 2014

The trains of Japan



If you haven't been to Japan recently, you have not seen the incredibly complex sets of rail lines that crisscross the major cities and connect them all. It's truly breathtaking.

Please cut, paste, and enjoy:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/12BOMeGUCzw" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

Alternatively, put on your blue cap and your white gloves, step into the cockpit of JR' Shinkansen (pictured above), and let's take this baby up to 300 kph:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="//www.youtube.com/embed/gIO5ohZcx-M" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

(That was fun!)

Friday, July 18, 2014

Absolutely stunning.

About 5000 pictures make up this timelapse demonstration of the beauty of nature:

http://vimeo.com/98276732


Monday, May 26, 2014

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Consult your funeral director first

After the overload of protein immediately below, I felt the need for a cleansing antidote.

Herewith:
Let us all know how it worked for you.

(Please)

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Consult your cardiologist first.

At 705 Divisadero, in San Francisco, we find 4505 Burgers & BBQ, a meat emporium. Their menu looks delicious, of course.
For those of us in the know, however, there are slighty illegal productions that require some memory and imagination skills. They are not on the menu.
Take, for example, the "4505 Big Mac":
The "Mac" refers to that square of fried macoroni and cheese nestled between the top meat patty and the lower cheese square.
US$18! Enjoy

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

"Exceeded expectations"

A weekend jaunt up North by Northeast found us with another couple on the flat flats of UCD, the University of California, Davis. We were there to attend the late afternoon presentation of "KOKORO" the 3rd annual showcase of Bakuhatsu Taiko Dan, the UCDavis Taiko club. I confess that I wasn't expecting too much.


Freeborn Hall is sort of in the center of the campus. It's a unimposing steel-frame multi-purpose space with a flat floor and a stage. Seating was deployed over about half the floor. At 4:00 pm the Mistress of Ceremonies entered stage right and announced that the performers were not ready quite yet and that lines still existed outside in front of the ticket counter. 50% of the audience had their smartphones out, playing games or something. I was getting less excited.

I should not have worried.
From the moment the lights dimmed and the curtains swung open, the space was completely filled with exuberation, youth, noise, energy, noise, drumming, noise, dancing and more noise. There was also a koto (or zither) and a flute.

The performers were all races and both sexes. They truly worked together as teams Some even sang.

But mostly there was drumming, and it was excellent. Professionally done. I was totally blown away. There are plenty more pix on the web, and I urge you to see them.

For dinner, we had heard that there was a Japanese restaurant in town. I remember my Mother telling me not to try seafood when more than 30 miles from the ocean, but I have learned that times have changed, so we went to try Mikuni. I confess I wasn't expecting too much.

Seating inside and outside (this is Davis after all.) We had a 15 minute wait and then were offered a high table which we eagerly accepted. The menu was Japanese food all right, but with a humorous California twist to most of the items (and college humor on the tee shirts: "I'm majoring in Sushiology.") We ordered a whole bunch of dishes and they arrived nicely spaced in time and all nicely presented. This was turning into a good meal.


Not inexpensive, but impressive. This was Japanese food with a California twist (notice the Jalapeno peppers.) The potstickers were deep fried and delicious. The fish was fresh and delicious. I will return some day.

All in all, a great afternoon and evening in Davis, California. My expectations were definitely exceeded. Thanks to all who made it happen.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

2014 Oakland A's

This year is evidencing an encouraging start for the Athletics.
And the team seems to be having fun!