Tag Archives: musings

Diary: Seeking Brussel(l) Sprouts, Finding Lobster (+ other festive prep)

Memo: Today, i am *braving* the wilds of Okayama (our minor provincial city) in search of brussel sprouts, yams (not sweet potatoes, *yams*), celery etc for festive goodtimes.

As you will notice in the dispatch i sneak a mention about Ichiro’s Christmas present and yes, discuss my magnificent Santa Claus beard as i am clearly *A Method Actor*.

clearly a method actor

Updates:

The Japan Agricultural outlet was almost bloodsport of grandmothers jockeying for produce. Survived.

Somehow I came home with celery that’s over a meter long, a daikon radish almost the size of my leg, and a whole lobster + intended brussel sprouts & variety of potato/tubers.

tubers, various – and squash

One note, 95% of our groceries come in a weekly delivery service from the co-op (not a cute little neighborhood co-op but like a national co-op) but some more obscure/specialty things required a little bit more adventuring. I really don’t leave the house aside from the post office, hospitals and nursery school.

Festive times impending at Tsuchida Cottage / arborist wife perks equals Christmas tree, cut yesterday (from private land by Oka-san) – its sappy and prickly (and rare!)

Feeling really grateful for a well -timed, well-received – very welcome and unexpected gift that is sparking up the Festive season with Transit goodness. Beside the sweet Translink sweater came a scarf and toques

PS will get a picture with the 3 of us in matching @TransLink toques soon.

Finally:

daikon and celery measured upon request (90+cm)

and tree “installed” with wooden braces, heavy rocks/stones in a crockery vessel (which recently held umeboshi)

Bailey’s Irish Cream arrived by courier, Kahlua acquired, cutlery ordered, various schemes considered. Bill Janovitz’s Christmas shuffle playlist tested. Carry on.

Diary: notary tasks & musings

Just a little bit excited because we have/get to visit a notary public! To drop a significant amount of ¥ for a stamped single photo copy of a gov-issued document to send to a different gov (a Canadian tax agency if you’re curious) so can check off appropriate boxes. This, dear people, is the career choice I missed out on.

I mean, being a notary, (mostly) you sit at a mahogany desk with an assortment of stamps and embossers, possibly a magnifying glass – mostly for effect, and people come and give you money, you stamp things (after looking at them first of course).

Noting, in some jurisdictions, its basic, i.e.: the “mailboxes etc” franchisee is a notary, or remember when i worked at Kinko’s, there was notary services (but not sure anyone ever used).

Some places though, it’s rather expensive and complicated but when you need a notary… you really need a notary, kind of like an emergency locksmith (another great skill because you can double as a jewel thief).

Related: My Mom at times was a notary in state of Utah and I have her embossing certification stamp – all heavy and metal – but being an honest Cub Scout, I would never think to circumvent proper guidelines and use illicitly. I do use for arts and crafts from time to time. (If you want to see evidence, you’re going to have to ask nicely).

Here in Japan, if one were to become a bilingual notary with certified (by embassies etc.) translation services, would be a really sweet gig.

I might whisper this into my son’s ear each night in the bathtub. Might also be something about being an “emergency locksmith” as noted above.

Folks who imagine what emigrant / “ex-pat” life entails have a strange impression that American Express offices still exist &/or embassies are helpful outposts.

But “NO” is only answer for any service/question/request/anything from the Canadian Consulate/Embassy here in Japan.

Aside:

Note: this photo isn’t technically at the same time but since I mentioned him, here’s a cute picture

Well, my son just blew me a kiss on the way out the door to nursery school. Yes, I’m doing really good at parenting & teaching important things. Thank you for asking.
So this means, change out of my luxurious pajamas into trousers & possibly a tie for my big outing to a notary.

Update: the notary office was the fifth floor of a nondescript building with various usual plexiglass separators, metal desks, fluorescent lights and trays with pens and stamps. The finished dossier was four pages & about 15,000¥. Importantly, I won the “best business card” game. I mean I really have the best cards going anywhere and I always win this very important ritual in Japan. {Plus I want them to remember me because we often need these sorts of services. Look at me, relationship building :-)}

Tea/juice made from pine needles

Back home after a stop at a stationery store, folding laundry and drinking pine needle tea.

Thinking about pals Cam, Chris & others making lovely progress in their professional endeavors. Cheering from the sidelines. Next: organize paperwork to send to gov offices.

I *really* took this snap to look “executive” and share with a friend for a laff (cause I’m far from any sort of executive-ness)… & Yes I’m actually in the stationery store restroom and I am not wearing a tie (obviously). but, these posts look better with some photos added so here we are

PS While at the stationæry store, I picked up a sweet new ink stamp from the discount bin, as well as yet another roll of washi paper masking tape.

I also have a video shot last week in the barn, but then kind of went into “crash mode”. Wanna finish that up before it’s too “stale”… It’s no big deal, it’s not like anyone’s waiting anxiously for me riffing topics about CCCP passports, miracles, Ginsberg’s “Howl” on red vinyl. [Retroactive update: this video “poets, passports and postcards in the Cascadian consulate” is now completed and available for your viewing amusement]

Typhoon Weather and Usual Days

Possibly – no Probably – the best worst video you’ll *maybe* watch today. Likely only with lounge-y, vaguely annotated Ramones on baritone ukulele anyhow + Gord Lightfoot if you get that far.

Typhoon Weather and Usual Days

After catching up on the laundry, making tomato soup, washing dishes and tidying up the carport, Dave checks in with a bit of ukulele and gratitude for friends who pick up phones &/or send messages, books and quilts when bit blue from “the illness” which is *a challenge* – and through it all, mixing in a little bit of Ramones and Gordon Lightfoot and the usual stuff about Post offices and making fermented items while trying to be a good papa to a wonderful nursery schooler and hubbo to a delightful arborist and diligent landscaper. 

Ryoko’s stone approach project #evidence
serious about tomato soup and various other items

Diary: Sunday Sundries… tidying up with power cords & dance party

Huge / busy week since my birthday good times on 16th which means am behind on correspondence as usual esp thank yous & catch ups to come after but but busy doing lots setting up the new/old house. #sortganizing (Also feels little rough sending joyful news with world collapsing :))

But hey look! Repaired a couple electric cords to a lamp and a paper shredder that the pet rabbit (who now lives comfortably in a luxurious cage) chewed through. With dodgy eyesight and clumsy fine motor skills, not my best job but you know, decent.

And hit CBD-Green Store (after seitai) for some various tonics and CBN vaporizers (Plus tested new made in Japan vaporizer for wax and Setouchi made CBD oil) yup, right here in Okayama.

Plus their gourmet vegan food is frankly shockingly amazing.

And huge move (despite lousy photo) of turnin what was once a kitchen into an extendable, manageable, versatile closet for 4 seasons plus various hobbies, jobs, and costumes.

Even a surface for folding laundry and ironing. Such a luxury!

Segued into spontaneous Ella Fitzgerald live in Berlin dance party in the kura ~ comfort courtesy of new air conditioner and dehumidifier. Yeah, luxury. Appropriately, Ella was singing “it’s too darn hot”. Some rearranging getting ready for new art making in fall and winter.

This week hopefully a bit more time in the kura studio to organize ephemera and records and hang up some interesting lights to make a standing working area.

Plus beginning the rock work approach to the house… thats on wife & tough ole Oka-san to do.

Plus cleaning up the wreckage of my once a wonderful inflatable pool and tent oasis which has not fared well between Typhoon, falling tall bamboo & big rainstorms followed by periods of massive humidity which has made things well, rather biological. Was nice for a minute. No more.

Oh I should mention that the flat rocks will fill in the area around the big rectangular stones & concrete pad and over towards the trees and what not. I’m not asking a lot of questions because they’re arborist & landscape designers so I’m just gonna stay out of their way…

As for me, besides catching up on correspondence (as always) and a few “life administration complicated international transactions” #ugh but next “big creative project” is a story pack (#podcast, video riff, photo essay) from the Jack Kerouac in Kobe exhibit. Craft it cleverly.


But… In closing: A very special dispatch loaded with b&w #lomography photos from Gandhi Beach in Kerala India, Jack Kerouac in Kobe, collage of fake IDs, oil pastels of sherbet-colored houses, & snaps from Suez Canal required two circumnavigations to reach Montreal due to an errant “8” not “3”.

PS we picked up 30 kg of rice from this wonderful gent in nearby Akaiwa. Thanks!

OK heading to sleep Friendlies, fondly, dvo

Castle, foundations and pajamas (from Saskatoon to Tsuchida)

Castles, Foundations and Pyjamas (from Saskatoon to Tsuchida)

Along with {amusing} ukulele meanderings, daveo recaps recent year including hot springs trip, nursery school colds, new pajamas, house building, legitimate emigration, stopping time, hospital visits, finding home, and various birthdays and gravesites, brain strain on new chords and kana, meditation & patience while waiting for sashimi and vanilla ice cream to arrive. 

Plus musings about company advising (really), Kerouac exhibit (story pack forthcoming), gratefulness for “go bags“ and other treats in the mail, conundrums about “not doing enough“ and struggles with computer eyes, usual stuff about postcards & paintings but especially about being grateful for family and friends and you and life and perpetual motion while sitting still sheltered.

Gratefully and Fondly, daveo51

Diary: arborist test, sumo, salad + sckness, campaigns, ideas

Saturday: My sweet wife Ryoko started day at a funeral for a dear fellow who always supported her band & community and then, changed outfits and hopped the train to Fukuoka for a big test to level up her tree doctor credentials.

Back at Tsuchida station, we watched final bout of Nagoya sumo basho (yowza!) & i made caprese salad with garden tomatoes (& bonus avocado).

The brutal elbows to the face & the full meaty hand slaps were heavy duty. More about this epic & historic sumo bout.

I know avocados aren’t usually included but when it is ripe, i’m using it! 

Sunday: she’s home! we all (me, father and mother in law) all managed Ichiro just fine though he def missed his mom and clung when she arrived home.

PS yup, i set up hotel, breakfast and walking route to test for her (i’m helping :)) feel a cold coming on though… 

on the bus, in the hood

Monday: went to mall by bus to get some Pokéman things for sick lil dude in Canada. I have no idea what i’m doing or wtf Pokéman is, but double-masked, sunglasses and hat and a mysterious foreigner met me to hand off some treats. Parcel coming soon (as well as a video to answer some questions about Japan). Continue reading Diary: arborist test, sumo, salad + sckness, campaigns, ideas

Diary: postal, piano, fever etc

Mailed:

  • 23 postcards {mostly #DaveO50 #PersonalArchaeology series}
  • Two thick dossiers (one foreign, one domestic)
  • Bonanza of Paralympic sports stamps
  • Plus, voting packet (Thurston County)

Also: piano moved, laundry started, Ichiro has a fever, Pokémon stamps acquired for a special packet, next step is the tatami mats getting re-wrapped.

Clarification about Pokéman: putting a packet together of Pokémon (and other Japanese cuteness) for a friend’s 13-year-old grandchild dealing with some heavy medical situation and facing eight months of chemotherapy. He loves Pokémon. So: (eager to help) put a message out to the local foreigners FB group for advice and trying to understand what makes a Pokémon card exciting (is it opening of the new packs or getting a super collectible card etc.?) And while I was at the post office, I noticed the Pokémon stamps so I bought a sheet to add to the packet. They’re here somewhere, I’ll snap a photo…

Wife studying for tree doctors certification level-up.

End of dispatch, more laundry to fold.

Hat was ¥642

Re: hat & workclothes >>

Related Annotations:

Japanese workwear stores are awsum & cheap > fun to explore // my arborist wife lets me tag along for kei-truck trips & i get a whole outfit (plus big hat, belt & cooling shirt) for like 4000¥!

Tabi (toe/sock-boots) are great & cheap to replace &/or have a few pair in rotation.

Baggy trousers keep ya cool (actually) & act like “cat whiskers” when on scaffolds to know how much space you have.

PS Sent requisite messages about baseball All-Star game and Tokyo Olympic conundrums (Note to self: post that radio interview you did)

Ohtani at MLB home run derby

Music theory, thunder & friendships #diary

From a rainy porch, riffing gratefulness for friends with kind words and packages, minimal commentary about ridiculous Olympics and various public health situations, hello to my favourite arborist and rain songs ++ tree doctor tests, Kerouac exhibits, future global expeditions with in-laws and importantly, the elusive D chord.

New Album “Freedom Venture Spirits” by “Captain Stag” coming soon ~ pre-order all usual outlets

Effectuating positive change from heart (with ukulele)

Just back from cleaning the grandparents’ graves and regrouping in century+ old barn studio, i riff a few things in my head about communities, hubris, restitution, sincerity, safety, life and death, empathy, seeds, cycles and children and everything.

As well as attempt a few chords on ukulele and talk about an air conditioner.

Post’d: Letters + Stamping (& sending/receiving round-up)

The last few weeks have seen busy-ness with the construction, wedding anniversary, wife’s birthday, Golden Week projects, a crash day, medical treatment, Mother’s Day, plus Ichiro’s nursery school routine,… {and a few other complicated projects}.

The next couple of days hoping to catch up busi-ness with on another batch of deluxe letters, postcards, art dossiers, treats all accessorized with a stash of stamps – both postal & inky (and continue my glacial pace of replying to *almost* three emails a week :-))

And… A few results of recent making/writing/glueing etc. 

Love letters, Loved
Written with stick & blood ink
Fingerprint for proof

a letter i shouldn’t be sharing but hopefully you can’t read the ink and quill scribble. note thumbprint for authenticity
vaguely poetic sharpie notes on the back of Suez snapshots (includes mug shot of me at sea cause i am goofball)

Plus: a few dispatches through the wormhole to intended recipients. A stationery sampler to Hez and mysterious India B&W lomo postcards to Beez. Yes amused and pleased.

India B&W Lomo spy photos (extended set), framed with letter like i am a big shot
super stationery variety fun time to the someone who i know loves it

Oh and… 

Just arrived (May 6th for accuracy) at my seitai doctor’s office to see the painting print I gave him (Gravelly Beach No. 4 “Sakura”, oil on canvas sheet 2005) is framed and hanging in his waiting room.

Gravelly Beach in Seitai doctor’s office, Okayama, Japan

Yep, I’m exhibited at goat farms, doctor’s offices and refrigerators around the world. To which my pal Dan in Massachusetts, said, “You’re on my wall too” with this evidence: 

Gravelly Beach in Western Mass

Reply: “You’re making me feel like a big deal here buddy. Truly appreciate it. I mean there’s nothing finer than sharing creative pursuits out into the world >> especially this “gravelly beach” series which has been sitting in storage for 15 years waiting to float around for people to breathe life into it”.

Now available as a postcard for purchase (but you probably already knew that or maybe already have this print)…

Suez Panoramas, Global Postcards & Fungible Shiba Inu stamp

Arts and crafts update from the Kura barn with  recent dossiers of various mixed media projects including: Suez Canal panoramas, more Kerala India spy photos & sherbet-coloured houses in oil pastels, poetry & travelogues on hotel stationæry, and the circular story of a postcard series from Cascadia, also a fun-gible Shiba Eno stamp. 

Get in on the fun. #hint https://daveostory.com/shop

PS happy to be “at home” at Tsuchida Cottage 

Let’s enjoy global ephemera and postal goodtimes #daveoshop

Memo: Regarding Personal Archeology (for starters)

Sent to a friend who was feeling confused about how to get started archiving and documenting one’s own creative life ~ shared here for edification – sorta for business-y types i suppose

In brief: Gotta just start… choose the things which are important to you and interesting about you, but make this easy by “meta documenting” your documentation. 

what may look like *too much* and clutter-y is really a delightful afternoon or 3 of discovering and contextualizing your projects and life

Ergo: Regarding personal archeology… Rather than feeling sh!tty, start by doing the *easy things* to chronicle the things you’ve pulled off this last bunch of years.

i.e.

  • List of all the speaking engagements you’ve done
  • List of all the events you planned/ wrangled/ coordinated/ hosted
  • List of speaking gigs you rocked
  • List of all the media, tv appearances/ news write-ups List of all the publications/articles you are in or wrote etc
  • List of all the jobs/positions you held

Then you can start to chronicle/ archive the particular artifacts from each of the above as available.

You might fall into a very nice rhythm – practical meditation in a way.

Turn off the TV, put on the music and space out with yourself and you’re fascinating history.

These kinds of things are good mental exercise but also I put forth somehow “important” and future *you* will be grateful for present day *you* for doing so.

Of course some examples at my website #NotAPlug Let me know if you require further encouragement or advice.