Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Where did all the gyoza go?

The frozen gyoza vending machine that appeared in my neighborhood last year is now empty. No gyoza, no product descriptions. I inquired at the small, narrow izakaya to the right of the machine and they didn't know what was going on. Perhaps this place was not the best location to sell gyoza? (Perish the thought!) I will continue to investigate...

UPDATE 6/8/23: The machine is gone...

But not to worry. There's another gyoza vending machine a mere 10-minute walk away that is still working, located between a canal and a hair stylist shop right across from the small Shinto shrine under the Kayashima train station.

And if that doesn't satisfy me, at the station closest to my work, I can buy some frozen meat and a bottle of dashi (a soup stock and ingredient that is said to add umami flavor) and then take a picture of myself with my new purchases in the photo booth.

This is all too convenient...

And a product of COVID-19 and meshi tero?

Thursday, June 1, 2023

For Mark

A few of us held a Japanese version of an Irish/Klingon wake in honor of our friend and colleague Dr. Mark Hollstein who passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on January 31, 2023. Although we haven't been able to do it for several years, we often had a yaki niku gathering at the end of the semester. This setting seemed appropriate for the occasion.

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

"In Tokyo, Skipping the Hot and New for Enduring Haunts"

Photo and story from The New York Times, 5/29/23.

Using a guidebook published more than 20 years ago, a writer searches out the bars and restaurants that express the city’s traditional eating and drinking culture.

Link: https://www.nytimes.com/2023/05/29/travel/tokyo-restaurants-bars-guide.html?smid=url-share

Monday, May 29, 2023

One of my greatest accomplishments as a professor: Turning a French student into a Hanshin fan!

Continuing the theme of having great pride in my students... In my Globalization class we spend some time talking about global sports and I use baseball as an example with the Hanshin Tigers as a case study. This is often times difficult for my European students and others from countries where baseball is not so popular or even non-existent. After informing me of his confusion and lack of knowledge about baseball, Gwendal left his comfort zone for some fieldwork. His own words:

"As you -insisted- suggested in class, I went to Koshien to watch the Tigers this evening and THEY WON! I indeed liked the atmosphere here and shared this moment with the people around my seat that were surprisingly friendly toward me. Some young Japanese boys even lend me a pair of the things to make some noise and asked me after the match to take a picture together."


Hanshin progress report as of 5/29/23: First place in the Central League (6 games ahead of second place DeNA) and riding an 8-game winning streak!

Sunday, May 28, 2023

My students continue to make me proud...

My student (from several years ago), Dan, is the guy with long hair drinking and rocking out.

Video: VALKYRIE ZERO - Frogs Of The Round (2023)