Friday, January 16, 2009   2:29 PM

Blogs on a roll

Unfortunately I spend way too much time in front of a computer to have the energy to be an examplary citizen of the blogosphere. Fortunately I don't have any statistics utilities in operation (other than the raw logfiles which I systematically scour for bad bots so I can block the hell out of them) so I don't lose sleep over the amount of people who might or might not be reading here (hi Mum!). Nevertheless I've recently come across a couple of blogs to add to the roll on the right (if you are reading this on the main page) and thought I'd take the opportunity to mention them in the hope of gaining some bloggy karma or whatever.

First off, a Brit who lived a long time in Germany, married a Japanese citizen and moved to Japan. And no, this isn't me, it's David, aka mdid, who is also penguin-friendly and so qualifies for an entry in the list of bloggy linkiness even if he never makes another post again.

Another bogging Brit is our man in abiko, a place for which I have a soft spot because although I've never been there I did commute on the Odakyu Line for a while, which connects via the Tokyo Metro Chiyoda Line to whatever line it is passes through Abiko, and the platform destination signs always contained references to Abiko and other exotic-sounding destinations such as Ayase and Toride. At least they sounded distant and exotic to me, although no doubt if you get off at Abiko you will see a) a station square with some bus stops and a statue of something random like a young girl juggling pumpkins; b) a shopping street called e.g. "Abiko Ginza" or "Abiko Sun Road" containing an eclectic mix of local shops and chains such as McDonalds, Doutor and Yoshinoya; and c) a giant pachinko complex. Fortunately our man in abiko doesn't blog much about local issues, even though the place is no doubt much more delightful than I imagine, but does have an interesting and incisive take on Japanese political affairs, which deserve all the satiric commentary they can get.

Finally, not exactly a new discovery but someone I have neglected to read more often: Thomas, who as his domain name suggests, lives in Sendai. A much more diligent poster than I, he has some interesting insights into long-term life in Japan and well worth following.

PS Anyone know what's happened to Tokyo Cowgirl?

Posted in Life in Japan
Many thanks for the link. Wow, you have never been to Abiko, and yet, you know her so well (naff public art, McD's etc). Actually, it's a lovely spot - it has the third dirtiest lake in Japan but they have stopped pumping sh*t into it, and now it has wildlife refuges and such. There's even a bird museum here with stuffed rare birds (no wonder they are rare). No penguins in the museum though, you'll be relieved to hear. Toride is about as exotic as, er, Scunthorpe.
Posted by: Our Man in Abiko | 2009-01-16 16:59
Funny that you'd mentioned Abiko, that's where I lived when I was in Japan the first time. The lake's not that bad, as long as you don't swim in it! it's a nice place.
You should try statcounter or getclicky (though they've dropped the number of free sites).
I've stuck my blog on, or my wife's, I'll probably blog from hear as I can't think of any blogging ideas of my own.
Posted by: Peter | 2009-01-16 22:55
We have a lake here in Mejiro too, you know. Well, actually more of a pond. Where bathing is doubly forbidden because there have been outbreaks of carp herpes in the ponds of nearby shrines.

Peter, I'll send my mother the link to your wife's blog, she's most interested in Japanese cooking.
Posted by: ThePenguin | 2009-01-17 07:56
Ha! Fame at last!

Thanks for the link. I'll add a reciprocal link shortly.

Incidentally I'd been having this nagging thought that I'd seen your URL somewhere before, and I've just realised where it was. If you ever had any reason to send a private message to the admins over at ToytownGermany, it may well have been me that answered you...
Posted by: David | 2009-01-18 10:15
Well, I used to live in Tokyo.
Posted by: Tom | 2009-01-20 10:56
Been noticing a few new faces in our little internets circle as well. Hello, gents. And TC, the chronic computer destroyer, is back and posting as well.

I am listening to Depeche Mode right now. For some strange reason, I found this to be relevant information.
Posted by: john turningpin | 2009-01-22 10:21