Don't say they aren't real.

corner 42. Enoshima Fujiya. 07dec23.


Why I love statues.



thst_statue1. Enoshima. 07dec23.

Statues-the only time a human form is motionless in all dimensions except for the slow decay of time. Completely representational, they simply exist in their pure created space. Please pay them no mind. You aren't supposed to. You know where you are because they are there, marking their owner's territory. Let's set our eyes upon the eerie statues of Japan.


thst_enoboy. 07dec23.

A companionable set at a local ice cream shop on Enoshima island, off the coast of Kamakura. It's a civilized place as you can buy saké and beer to go with your sweets. Oddly, both are are squeaky-clean blondish, blue-eyed young Caucasian Americans and attired in All American Farmhand red and white stripped shirts and blue jeans. He is wearing rolled up jeans and pig-sty slopping heavy boots.

thst_enogirl. 07dec23.

The Enoshima sofuto isu kuremu little girl--as deliciously rounded and fulsome as her wares. She sports a jeans dress and petticoat, sweet little Mary Jane shoes, and socks. Clearly, she is going to do lighter work in this getup. This must be the last bastion for the Good Americans as bearers of the best of America-soft ice cream cones.

thst_statue2. KUHS.08jan28.

I stared out my second story classroom upon Bronze Boy for two years at KUHS in Nakayama. Why was a naked Greco-Japanese Buff Boy situated squarely in front of the main entrance? Why is he unaccompanied by a correspondingly naked, proudly athletic young girl, as KUHS is not a boys-only institution? What message does this give to the beuniformed youngsters making their way past his lonely metallic self? On this wintery January day, he at least sports shoulder epaulets of new snow.

thst_sumo. 07dec23.

Ryogoku-home of sumo. The main road is lined with bronze statues of Grand Champion yokozuna performing the sacred, stately, and ponderously elegant opening ceremony in special Shinto ropewear. Is sumo secretly all about bondage, I salaciously wonder? (keitai)

thst_inari. 08may7.

The unique fox gods inari of Hikan Inari Jinja. While everyone quite properly visits the huge and impressive red paper lantern of Asakusa's Senso-ji Buddhist temple, I will let you in on the best kept secret. Leave the boisterous, yen-tossing crowds and head east. Go around the right side of the main temple along a wall, following a stone and gravel path to the Hikan Inari Jinja. It is a small, dark wooden Shinto shrine dedicated by a grateful fireman to the gods for the recovery of his ailing wife. Built in 1854 in the final days of the Tokugawa shoguns, this is the original wood structure. How it escaped firebombing by yours truly in 1945 I don't know. While small, it is chock-a-block with watchful statues of the original kami of Nippon-the inari "fox god."

thst_inari2. 08may7.

The white foxes come in pairs, the male fox has a saucy little moustache. You can purchase a pair from the shine attendants and keep them at your home and shrine, or place them here along with hundreds of their mates. Each one is handpainted, which adds to their limitless charm. Hikan Inari Jinja is constantly visited, predominately by older women, it seems to me. They make a circuit among the clusters of stone and wood figures of foxes. Shinmon Tatsugoro, the fireman, and his recovered wife, would be pleased if you would visit, too, and contribute little fox statues for their safekeeping.


Tucked into a little side jinja shrine (Ryo Daishi, I believe), just northwest of Ueno station, a side area stores buckets of statues, including this cheerful rendition of two of the boatload of seven lucky gods (Shichi-fuku-jin) from China. Left: Daikokuten, god of farmers and food. Right: Fukurokuju, god of wisdom and as Jurougin, or Laozi, the god of longevity and saké. No wonder he is so cheerful and wise!

thst_half. 07jun13.

Late on early summer evening leaving Yokohama's Prince Hotel, the window displays were in transition. Half done, half undone. Startled, I doubled back to snap this with my trusty Razor cell phone. The deconstruction, I leave to you. (keitai).

Tokyo Rated Asia's Most Important Metropolis

LONDON (Kyodo) Tokyo is the most important city in Asia thanks to its economic and cultural might, according to a recent survey that ranked it far ahead of its regional rivals. (London was 1st, NY was 2nd, and Paris was 3rd).

Tokyo scored 74 points, well ahead in Asia with Beijing at 51 and Seoul at 49. Further down the list were Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore. The Japan Times. Source for this outrageous statement (however, don't get me started about the apartment fees situation):