Wednesday, 29 September 2010


Mott's Bar Gen in Kabukicho: 100 different shōchū's and open till 7am. When I lived in Kabukicho I came here 6 nights a week and had less time off than most of the staff. 
I learned all about Imo Shōchū and met loads of great people but time marches on, the original four staff all left, most of the locals slowly changed, new staff came, new staff sadly go... but the 100 shochus are still there, just waiting for me to pop back in from time to time and taste the new arrivals.
Worshipping at the altar.

Sunday, 26 September 2010


They say that 3 million people pass through Shinjuku station every morning, and tucked away in the "Food Pocket" part of the East Exit basement is Berg, a hotdog & beer cafe/standing-bar that's actually managed to create a real sense of community.

Just the job for a quick bite after work or to wait for the first train after a night out, they keep a fine drop and have a mini-exhibition from a different local artist every month or so along the back wall. They've been going more than 20 years but since 2008 they've been fighting eviction by their corporate landlord Lumine, the big department store in the building above who want to kick then out and redevelop the area. There's a petition you can sign in the shop as well as online here.

So far so good...

Wednesday, 22 September 2010


Nice to see gates that quietly suggest, "Sorry mate, do you mind walking round?" instead of screaming "KEEP OUT!!"

Friday, 17 September 2010

Names III

Anyone got a missus who'd let them meet the lads down here for a game of stick?
I can't really see Ray Reardon meeting Eddie Charlton down the Pleasure House Giggle for a quick best of 5 frames.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010


The overcrowded trains of Tokyo have been a well-known dirty old man's delight for years. To try and deal the chronic groping problem, about ten years ago the rail companies re-introduced an old idea of women-only cars at peak hours on certain lines.
Most are grateful for the safe haven and don't think there are enough, a few see it as a band-aid solution and not facing up to the real problem. All I know is you feel like a right perve if you ever accidentally get into one of these cars during the Women Only hours as I did once when when I first got here without knowing the rules… it was a long couple of minutes to the next station.

It still goes on though and enterprising gropers (chikan) have even been known to feign disability, as there's an exception for the disabled who can ride anywhere.

A friend of mine was a real looker and used to get this shit on the trains all the time when she was younger. Some guy even called after her once, “thank-you”, as she made her escape to another car at the next station. She ended up carrying a hat-pin in her bag and sticking it HARD into any wandering hands that came her way. Nice one.

Sunday, 12 September 2010


Just found another great bottleshop down the road. These three massive pots reminded me of buying Scrumpy at a farm outside Taunton years ago on a surf-trip down to Bude. The farmer took us to a barn where there were two huge vats of the stuff labelled "Dry" and Sweet" and asked us if we wanted dry, sweet or medium. "Where's the medium then?" one of the boys asked. "Eazy, Oi just puts in arf-n-arf n gives it a bloody good shake."

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Fukushima Surf Trip

2' waves
35 degrees
"error code 99" on the new digi camera
left my fins at home
first 2' waves in 6 months
35 degrees in September!!
the camera's under warranty
great surfspot tip for next time from the guy who sold me the new fins
Man I've missed surfing!

           Great fountain design...