i am brad warner's brain-washed zen drone

Originally uploaded by renfield.

Brad loves this photo, for obvious reasons. This and other photos are now available from my jukai ceremony.

There is also a video. But this is just the end of the ceremony, it doesn't show the part where Brad goes "Do not live by selling liquor...didn't even know her!"
Also note that we are so amazingly serene, holy, enlightened beings we had to...use the script. Because Brad had never done the ceremony before and I'd only seen it once.

loverly saturday

Had a late end to an hellatious week at work; finally left the office at 10:30 on Friday and walked home, attempting to short cut through Roppongi down Toriizaka and instead discovering many a dead end in that heretofore unexplored neighborhood.

Tonchan woke me up this morning in standard face-slapping fashion and all three of us headed to the dentist so that P could get her teeth cleaned. Ton was in a good mood and I carried her the whole time. She fell asleep right on schedule and napped nearly an hour, waking up just when P was done.
We all cruised home and then I dropped off the dry cleaning before hitting zazen.
On the way back I stopped by the dentist again to pick up Ton's toys that we forgot, then I took the Big Laundry (sofa cover, etc.) to the laundromat down the street. There was an (American?) kid doing laundry reading a Dungeons & Dragons book and since I was a mad D&D freak when I was his age we got into some deep discussions about the merits of halfling thieves versus half-ork berserkers, multiple weapon wielding, the new bleed-to-death rules and the magic of inanimate objects. Plus we both agreed that flesh golems are just stupid.

brushing my teeth

brushing my teeth
Originally uploaded by renfield.

maid cafe and homecoming

It has been a truly and royally hellatorius* week. The newly implemented Financial Instruments and Echange Law has been making my job complicated. Like most things implemented by the Japanese governmental bureaucracy, the intentions are wonderful and the execution atrocious. It seems there are not too many folks in the Ministry of Finance who actually have any clue how the professional, international banking and trading world works. It is not hard to imagine why there is no significant hedge fund presence on shore, for example. Lesse, here's your options:
Establish fund onshore, pay obscene taxes, be held to deleterious disclosure obligations, and be subject to patently xenophobic regulation by at best incompetent authorities whilst bearing the brunt of one of the most expensive cities in the world. Oh yeah, and there are no where near enough accountants and lawyers.
Establish fund in Singapore/Hong Kong, get massive tax breaks, be surrounded by an absolutely humming infrastructure chock full of English fluent, competent support services, regulated by well-behaved and experienced self-policing organizations and pro-business authorities.

At lest when work was done we decided to hit the local maid cafe, GASH. Thursday nights it's open in the evening as a bar, so we headed down there with a quorum. Sadly, it was less than titillating. Besides the fact that the waitresses were dressed in poofy french maid outfits, the place was fairly typical. Decent fried chicken, small but cheap beverages, nice bathroom. The evening was definitely made by the entertaining stories of our former British Army and Queen's Royal Guard HR representative. The best thing about going out with Human Resources is it's like partying with your lawyer; everything you do and say is protected by their oath of secrecy.

A contingent went off in search of debauchery in Shinjuku and I walked home.
HOME, as in my apartment, not that stale hovel in Roppongi I've been living in for a couple of weeks. The ladies moved in earlier in the day and after getting a bit more intensive cleaning the place is once again livable. Took a shower in my newly renovated bathroom and am happy to report a lack of general flooding, so I think the problem is solved.


Originally uploaded by renfield.


leg warmers

P got Tonchan some cool leg warmers. Very 1983.

yoko narabi

Sakaguch put up a video of me cutting four targets at the 2nd West Coast Taikai.
It looks like I nailed it, but actually I just chunked the top of the first target and therefore it didn't count. The winner did I seven targets anyway.
But man is that a great sword!

lunch @ mandarin oriental

lunch @ mandarin oriental
Originally uploaded by renfield.

Had to teach at honbu in the afternoon, so went with the ladies to Mitsukoshi to do some shopping in the am. We had lunch in the lobby of the Manadarin Oriental next door. A truly inspiring buffet, and we even saw a famous Japanese dude.