All posts by daveo

Quote: Jerry riffs about Jack

“wake now discover that you are the eyes of the world”

 More Jack Kerouac riffs (in case you’re not getting enough) this one from the mighty Jerry Garcia

“I can’t separate who I am now from what I got from Kerouac. I don’t know if I would ever have had the courage or the vision to do something outside with my life – or even suspected the possibilities existed – if it weren’t for Kerouac opening those doors.”

Jerry Garcia, remembering Jack Kerouac who was born in Lowell, MA on March 12, 1922

Diary: Two Years in Okayama (as an un-secret agent)

Evidence of a passport renewal, the mustache means I’m a distinguished person to be taken seriously, right? Am I doing this right?

 * two years towards forever *

There was a time when I was disappeared, when I was invisible, for reasons unnecessary to explain right now.
 
So much collapsed, lost, left, leading to confusion, despair and seeking… Far — I mean *all the way* — deliberately lost, comfortably lonely, finding ways and means of healing, picking up the pieces, starting again, recycling some bits, rebuilding from the foundation, working backwards from the mis-quoted Buddha koans… there were poetry, scrapbooks, letters and tears.
 
* reinventing to who I already was *
 
But what I came here to say is “it’s all about the cycles“ and as it goes… two years ago I came here to begin a new life. I will live here forever.
 
When I was a kid, I knew right away I wanted to “go places, make stories, share with others“ I’ve done a lot of the first two, now can do a lot of the three while still doing more of the two and maybe some of the one, but only maybe. And I’m cool with that.
 
Anyway, since I arrived here:
 
Massive epic wedding with so many wonderful people (so great!)
 
Wonderful relationship with in-laws (so incredibly grateful for this)
Remarkable baby delivered safely in the midst of public health crisis
 
One funeral (extended Buddhist social distance style) of a long-lived grandmother shortly after the baby (who shares a name but not kanji with her late husband) arrived
 
Several museums slowly visited, getting to know the buses, street cars, villages and shrines in our local area
 
Many, many bowls of Ramen & teas/coffees (extensively documented for historical research)
 
So much paperwork and registrations, i.e.:
* national health insurance
* pension program
* “my number” card
* foreigner registration card (& renewal)
* updating a handful of passports
(all of the above requiring slightly different sized photos)
* koseki tohon (family register)
* post office bank account
* international transfer bank
* various library cards
* several hospital cards
* a few mysterious phone numbers
* taxes in multiple countries (such a good boy Dave!)
* various government records in previous countries updated (usually by postal mail since heaven help me if I’m gonna spend four hours on hold)
 
Several of the same of the above for wife’s name change & Ichiro’s various registrations and citizenship(s), often requiring certified translation and notarizations
 
Add in a consulate visit for an affidavit
 
Monthly hospital visits with the neurologist (no, no real progress #mecfs but well… I’m in the system) + frequent “Seitai” treatments / hard to explain but very useful + Several emergency room visit (I’ll spare you the details) + Investigations into LDN/new strategies
 
Hundreds, possibly approaching thousands of postal mail items (postcards, letters, dossiers) sent out into the world
 
Hundreds, possibly approaching thousands of blog posts (diaries, personal archeology etc.) sent out into the world
 
An extended ramble to far-flung corners of under-known Japanese provinces to visit sensei in fishing ports and wizard hermits in mountains (also museums, hot springs, and roadside attractions)
 
So many various trains and styles of accommodation utilized / several of which are documented in various forms (the trains, not the hotels/guest houses/capsules/ryokan/minshuku/retreats…)
 
Relatives in Nagasaki hospitals and abacus tournaments visited / Plus atomic bomb memorial, and evidence of early Dutch trading settlements, met a noodle-making friend, saw an island that looks like a battleship
 
Two Christmases/New Years, one raucous, one subdued
 
Several, but nowhere near enough, Hot Springs visits > However, wonderful new bathtub installed at our cottage
 
While on the topic, a couple of double-pane windows, wall repairs and other things to make the house more cozy and efficient (documentation about current construction project omitted to avoid excess redundancy)
 
Exhibit of my paintings of post boxes, sometimes with haiku, and Shibuya and Mac Kobayashi ’s goat farm, plus a magazine and cameos on TV
 
Several Mae Maes (Ryoko Olson’s band) shows (plus a YouTube channel) / i’m the proudest husband when I get to go watch her perform + Love to support her when she is organizing concerts and making postcards, flyers, pins…
 
Going with Ryoko to tea ceremonies at lovely sensei’s house or “out and about” to special events (e.g. ceramic town Bizen where we also visited master potter Hosokawa’s studio) – Learning the tools and the combinations and the processes and the nuance + rocking kimono
 
Started a sort of kind of little shop thing to sell postcards & poems (including paintings and post boxes, lomos from India,…) I mean the part about sharing the stories I mentioned above preamble
Started a project to sell some things which exist only in memories and on paper #ugh
Got some new glasses, gave up some habits, hung out at some barbershops (also wife cut hair), learned some new words, organized some archives, turned 50 years old (did a big personal archeology project about that #daveo50), wrote a few poems, tried some new calligraphy techniques, sorted and organized art supplies, tidied up a tool shed and the barn, listened to a lot of records – some old and some new (to me), books out of boxes and onto shelves, many new books ordered… #ongoing
Other things & items forgotten (but likely documented elsewhere…)
Most importantly though is remarkable wife and adorable baby and wonderful in-laws and kind and thoughtful friends scattered around the world (you).
 
Fondly, dvo 
 
Photo: Evidence of a passport renewal, the mustache means I’m a distinguished person to be taken seriously, right? Am I doing this right?

File Under Portals, vol. 2 (postboxes, milk delivery, phones etc)

Post boxes & milk boxes – mysterious doors and other wormholes to places in time, observed on a stroll in Okayama city

Postboxes, spotted in the wilds of Kojima, Okayama, Japan (Ryoko also)

Devices. ideal for lonely time travelers and occasional ramblers.  

File Under Portals, vol. 1 (tobacco, kura, photo/coffee/masks)

Tobacco stands, spotted in the wild. Some are shuttered, some are (vaguely) operational, one is actually a ticket booth maybe. Note: the Japanese federal government is, I think, 27% owner of Japan Tobacco, a publicly traded company. I would fact check this but I’m folding laundry right now.
Machines designed to do dispense items, various – purchased items from 2 out of the 3
Kura barns, de/re-constructed at Nozaki-te salt compound, Kojima, Okayama, Japan
— at 野崎家旧宅

Spanish Alleys & India Lomos / new postcards

2 new series of postcards up for sale!

First is” Spanish Alleys” – a set of 2 quality, hand-finished art prints of paintings by me (hello!) from alleys in Barcelona – right off Las Ramblas, peeking into apartments from a Juliet balcony – and Granada – amidst a jumbled alley of a Teteria with shishas, paper lamps and buildings seeming to fall into each other. Watercolour and pastel mixed-media.

“Spanish Alleys” set of 2 painting postcards from Barcelona and Granada

Second is “India Lomos” – a set of 4 B&W photo prints from a Lomo “sardine can” spy camera from Cochi (Kochin) Kerala, India featuring a steel steed bicycle, Royal Enfield motorcycle, “Danger” stacks, and cenotaph by the church (was Portuguese, then Dutch, then British, now tourist) which held Vasco Da Gamma’s bones. All fuzzy and mysterious (both bones and photos).

“India Lomos” set of 4 b&w photos from Kerala

Both limited to sets of 5 and hand-finished with affection here at Tsuchida Cottage, Japan. Available (along with other “Extras” at BuyMeACoffee.com/daveo where you can also sign up for the DaveO Shop Club and receive a postal treat automagically each month plus extra digital treats #worthit

Get in while they are fresh and shiny, think you’ll love sharing with your friends (or keeping for yourself).

Fondly, dvo

Buy Me A Coffee

Ichiro and Ryoko (and moss and trees)

{You might have seen a sneak preview of this glorious snap but…} Behold! 

Ichiro and Ryoko in a mossy garden love love love

My two lovelies, out in the *wild*, in the olden compound of a salt making family: aged bent trees, carefully tended; moss everywhere; rows of kura barns (previously storing rice, miso, pickles, salt); wood-fired bathtub; dry-fit stone masonry; art (traditional and modern) and artifacts (globes, cameras, phones, scales, accordion etc.) – I purchased a bag of salt, and six postcards which I decorated with their special commemorative inky stamp. 

At some other point I’ll share evidence of the above but for now, I’ll share evidence of my two wonderful humans. In the wild (Kojima, Okayama, Japan). <3

Kura Cultural Curation – Japan Cottage Musings

Kura Cultural Curation – Japan Cottage Musings

Riffs about home reform with new rooms, woodstove and tea ceremony area (thoughts of Ichiro and pals coming home from school) heat pump for humidity control for responsibly curating and collecting books for a legacy library.

And a rundown of recent new/used records including acknowledgement of Shred Kelly, Nice Horse, and (Buffalo Tom’s) Bill Janovitiz’s community building in times of tumult + musical memories in tangible form with David Bowie Let’s Dance picture disc, Hüsker Dü covers, Dead Kennedys, Sonic Youth’s Dirty (Europe 92), War on Drugs (comfort foods), literary keeners The  Weakerthans from Winnipeg, and importantly pal Pat WOOD on Awesome Death’s “To Be Determined.”

Thanks to postcard club participants and folks mailing stuff my way and Casa Rosa for safe haven for library staging.

Fondly, dvo at Giggling Piglet Atelier and Consulate

PS Investigate Forthwith:

Diary: mixed-media card, steps forward with projects (and tea)

Let’s Enjoy! daveostory.com/shop – Paintings, Postcards, Poetry, etc.

+ Paints, Posts, Poems + (with tea)

Construction underway, the elusive and complicated “operation turtle” {requiring lawyers & money but no guns #Zevon} has progressed a tiny step amidst absurd requirements and Ichiro’s all registered for nursery school which means I am “back in the studio” for a bit making envelopes of treasures for my customers, yup, customers.

You know I make postal treats, poems and paintings for love but hey, gotta pay for the copious ink and endless stamps so hooray, sign up and receive things… wonderful items, sometimes slowly (but that’s the postal systems of the world working diligently amidst *all of it*).

Fondly, dvo

ergo: Oh I’m making things today, making wonderful things and sending to all sorts of spectacular folks. My business ain’t fancy but it filled with heart and art. Ya on board?

Reading the Sakura leaves to know the present, the past and the future well… Whatever it is.