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Judge Brett Cullum • Location: Houston, TX
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Japan Part 3
December 22nd, 2005 2:16AM

Another installment from my trip to Japan - land of singing toilets, Angelina Jolie, and now Madonna.

For some reason Okinawa has decided to turn cold... well, at least for Okinawa. It's in the 50s which doesn't sound bad, but the cold wind is strong enough to carry away a large garbage can, small pets, and anything I'm holding in my hand. All the trees are sideways, stray cats drift by like tumbleweeds in the air, and the wind howls over the roofs. So most of the activities have shifted indoors. Been going to a lot of Japanese restaurants and shopping. I'm not the world's best shopper, but the weather makes me appreciate getting out of the wind to look at kimonos and statues of demonic dogs that everyone buys here to protect their homes (shishas is the correct term).

My mom booked us both a Thai yoga massage which was all about pressure points and assisted stretching. The guy who did mine said I was the most flexible white person he's met. I think he said that because my mom was in great pain anytime they bent her legs back towards her spine. I did win "most flexible" in high school though I think they meant versatile instead of bendy. Ah well!

MTV Japan is kind of fun. It's all Oriental types acting like either Marilyn Manson, J Lo, or a gangsta rappers. Madonna shows up occasionally which only convinces me she does indeed rule the world somehow. She's the only white woman allowed in the mix of videos currently on rotation in Asia. By the way the Japanese can make ANYTHING rhyme because all the verbs end in "masu" and usually come at the end of a sentence. No wonder they invented haiku! Poetry based on rhymes here would be endless. Everything rhymes!

Sushi lovers would hit the jackpot here! My mom and I went to one of those rotating sushi restaurants - where hunks of raw fish on plates circle endlessly around a large conveyor belt around the diners. You grab what you want, and they charge you at the end by the color of your plates. We had a shrimp tempura roll, a pork cutlet roll, French shrimp salad roll, tuna roll, cucumber roll, plumb roll, and a salmon roll - the total came to $7. Funny thing is my mother hates raw fish, so I end up with any shasimi or sushi which is actually raw. I'm still boggled by all these Americans that requested to work here and hate raw fish, and the ones who hate seafood. If you are what you eat I'm turning into a raw piece of salmon! Which is a good thing, since I have to fight as if I am going upstream to get through all this wind.


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