Sunday, September 9

And The Eyes Have It

Take a look at this.

I see these menacing looking eyes all the time. They were always floating on the periphery. I assumed they were a community watch sort of thing. I was right. The sticker says, "Crime: We won't let it happen." Once I started to look for them, I really started to see them everywhere.

On doors.

On vans.

On bikes.

On buses.

It truly is part of the iconic landscape of Japan. I love it. It seems to have a bit more punch that the "Crime Watch" signs in the US. Another thing that is quickly becoming part of the city landscape...

...fixed bikes. If you thought the fixed bike phenomenon was just a passing phase, I got evidence to prove you wrong. This pic was taken outside the Stussy shop in Shinjuku. They were proudly displaying their membership to the fixed club. I also found more scattered through the city.

I like the solid back wheel. It looks very serious. It is also a great place to put all your cool stickers. On the other hand...I like the BMX style a lot. I feel like it would be a bit easier to control. But, what do I know. Would you like some more pics?

I like the pairs locked together. It means that they have fixed friends. I wonder if they would be friends with regular bike riders. From time to time I see a group of them sliding through the city. They look pretty damn cool. But they don't seem to co-mingle. I wonder. One side effect of the growing popularity of fixed bikes: when I see a messenger without a fixed bike, I think, "What a pussy." This happens even though I have never even come close to riding one, let alone buying one.

One other bike issue I would like to address is this.

Why is Hummer making a bike? And why is it being sold in Japan? Yes, it is a bit more environmental sound than the regular SUV. But I still ask why. I started seeing them a year or 2 ago. But they are not the only bike oddity out there.

The Chevy seems to be very popular. I see it all over. Is this the new recovery plan for the US car makers? This is the best idea they can come up with? Scary. But American car companies are not the only people trying to make a quick buck through licensing.

Even the defunct and now resurrected Rover is getting in the game. They make their bikes available in 2 sizes: compact and regular. Look, look, their seats have a stripe! Their bikes, like there cars look low on imagination and high on boring.

Even the French can't turn down a chance at some easy money. Actually the Peugeot bikes are everywhere. All differnt sizes and colors. Speaking of different sizes, I hear some people calling for more picks of the compact bikes. Well, you can't say I don't try to satisfy my readers.

Mini bikes that will fit in the trunks of the cars they are named after. A perfect circle. No?

Moving on.

As I teased last week, I bought some new shoes. First thing to notice is the box sizes. On the left is the modern larger size and on the right is the vintage smaller box. I wonder why they had to increase the box size? Wanted to kill more trees? Wanted to take up more room in my closet?

So as I said, I was looking at the re-sellers in Ueno last week. Usually I see my shoe purchases coming a mile away. I find the pictures online months before the release date, lust after it for some time, plan for the purchase with my banker, and then go to the store and pick it up on the day it comes out. It gives me time to think and I don't make many mistakes.

At the same time, I usually check at the re-sellers to see if there is anything I missed in the past, or any cheap deals. But it is hard: I need to decide on the spot, they need to have my size, they need to be unworn, and the price has to be right. All four came together and I got these.

As far as I know, these were not in any pack or named anything special. What I do know is that they were released in 2005 and are pretty damn nice. I picked them up for ¥8000. ($70) After I got home, I saw them on Flight Club for $200, but they have since been sold. Apparently I did some thrifty shopping. My Dad would be proud.

You know I am all about the pink highlights. The brown and green give me lots of options to match with. And for some reason, I love that the soles are navy blue. It seems like they went the extra mile, rather than the standard white or black. As for laces, again, I have lots of options. First Developing. I wore them for the first time the other day.

It is not very often you can find a floor that matches you kicks. Had to snag a pic. One other shoe related news I bring you yet another lace color for the Hold Tights.

And since it has been a hot minute since I have shown a whole outfit, I will throw one at you.

I found this shirt in some random catalogue my girl had. I am usually not a big catalogue shopper, but I couldn't pass this "AIR" t-shirt up. There is a little paragraph about Air Max on the bottom of the shirt and a nice big logo on the back. I likey.


#1. The first mix I have for you this week is from Catchdubs and DJ Ayres. Read all about it HERE. I like it because it is a bit off the beaten path. Not my usual stuff, but very good. It is a nice dancy rock mix. Never gets too far in any direction. Listenable from beginning to end. Some standout tracks include Depeche Mode goodness, the sick Cardigans remix, and the overly fun reworking of Foxy Lady. Click HERE for the mix. Track list below. [via Catchdubs, obviously]

Tracklist - Superfriends:

Gary Numan - M.E.
Depeche Mode - Policy of Truth
Squeeze - Take Me I'm Yours
Partial Arts - Trauermusic (Alter Ego Mix)
Kaos - My Reputation
The Cardigans - Love Fool (Catchdubs Bongo Edit)
The Gossip - Standing in the Way of Control (Soulwax Remix)
Speaker Junk - Foxy Lady
Adam Kesher - Modern Times (908 Remix)
Wolf & Cub - Thousand Cuts (Phones Remix)
Metric - Handshakes
Tones On Tail - Go
The Kills - Love Is a Deserter (Cavemen Mix)
Pixies - Alec Eiffel
Devo - Mongoloid
The Clash - Jail Guitar Doors
The Presets - Are You The One (Van She Tech NYC Rush Mix)
!!! - All My Heroes Are Weirdos
Snowden - Kill The Power
Maximum Joy - Stretch (99 Records Version)
Pyschonauts - Hot Blood
Harry Knuckles - Blisster<br>Intriga - Nostalgia Dance Orchestra
INXS - Original Sin
Psychedelic Furs - Love My Way
Hot Chip - Colours (Fred Falke Remix)
Robert Lippok & Barbara Morgenstern - Please Wake Me For Meals

#2. This is a mix that Diplo did for Pitchfork. It is a really good mix. I will explain it like this. This mix is like your crazy aunt. Whenever she comes back from whatever loony place she was last never know what bizarre stories she has in her head or what crazy souvenirs she has in her bag for you. It's always unpredictable but always good...sometimes its exactly what you never knew you wanted. Click HERE for the music and lot's more info about the mix.

Tracklist - Diplo 4 Pitchfork:

01. I Like Turtles
02. Mr. Vegas: "Lean Wit It"
03. M.I.A. [ft. Bun B and Rich Boy]: "Paper Planes"
04. Schooly D: "Gucci Time"
05. Yeah Yeah Yeahs: "Rockers to Swallow"
06. Jellybean: "Sidewalk Talk"
07. Belle Stars: "Iko Iko"
08. Scala & Kolacny Brothers: "Heartbeats"
09. Diplo & Switch [ft. Elephant Man]: "East, West (Remix)"
10. Nirvana: Drain You / Huey: "Pop, Lock & Drop It"
11. Marc Houle: "Bay of Figs (Ward 21 Mix)"
12. DJ Tamiel: "Bump Like This"
13. Queen [ft. David Bowie]: "Under Pressure"
14. Eddie Money: "Take Me Home Tonight"
15. Soulja Boy: "Crank Dat Superman"
16. Bat for Lashes: "What's a Girl to Do (Break)"
17. DJ Shadow: "Organ Donor (Sandrinho Remix)"
18. Diplo & Switch [ft. Beenie Man]: "Solta Frango"
19. Mr. Vegas: "Hot Fuk (Diplo Mix)"
20. Enur [ft. Natasja]: "Calabria (2007 mix)"
21. Spoon: "Paper Tiger"
22. Circle Children: "Zulu"
23. M.I.A. [ft Akon]: "Boyz Remix (Hi Powered Boyz Get Down)"
24. Boy 8 Bit: "Suspense Is Killing Me"
25. KW Griff: "Tony's Back"
26. Diplo: "Work Is Never Over"
27. M.I.A: "Bamboo Banger"
28. Sizzla: "Bamboo Banger (Dubplate)"
29. Blaqstarr: "Supastarr"
30. Shai: "If I Ever Fall in Love Again (Dub)"
31. Orbital: "Halcyon"
32. LA Priest: "Engine (Erol Alkan Remix)"
33. Petter: "Some Polyphony"
34. Rihanna: "Umbrella (Vandalism Mix)"
35. Justice: "Phantom Pt. II (Soulwax Mix)"
36. The White Stripes: "Little Cream Soda"
37. ZZT: "Lower State of Consciousness"
38. Kia Shine: "Crispy"
39. Bart Simpson: "Bartman (So Kripsy Mix)"

#3. This is, as it says above, is the Electric Zoo Mixtape 2. It is also good, but in a different way than the Diplo mix. I will explain: This one is like your rich uncle. You could set your watch to his visits. Once every 6 months he arrives to take your whole family to the only nice restuarnt in your town. He always orders the steak, rare with whiskey on the side. (That whiskey becomes important later.) Like clockwork, after the appetizer he gives you whatever is the hottest item at the moment. Of course you are happy...but it seems just a little souless. He then talks about the same topics as always over his steak. It is only when he gets to the 3rd whiskey that he starts to get a little crazy and a bit funny and risqué. Click HERE for the music. [via Electric Zoo]

Tracklist - Electric Zoo Mixtape 2:

Justin Martin - 'Ghetto Train'
Radioclit - 'Divine Gosa (Brodinski Remix)'
The Bulgarian Ft. Spoek Bukky - 'The Zombie Door'
Jaimie Fanatic - 'Don't Act Like You Don't Know'
Crookers - 'Chippin It Up 4 A Killa (Trevor Loveys Rework)'
Uffie - 'Hot Chick (Bonus Beats)'
Eve - 'Tambourine (Edit)'
The Fratellis - 'Creeping Up The Backstairs (Remix)'
To My Boy - 'Model (Sinden Remix)'
The Ghost Frequency - 'Nightmare (Speaker Junk's Unleash The Beast Remix)'
Adam Sky VS Mark Stewart - 'We Are All Prostitutes (Crookers Remix)'
Aquasky Ft. Acafool - 'Have A Good Time (Count Of Monte Cristal & Sinden Remix)'
Jaimie Fanatic VS Missy Elliot - 'We Run This'
Jokers Of The Scene - 'Y'all Know The Name'
Bart B More - 'Killing It'
Hostage - 'Schweet Dreams'
Roisin Murphy - 'Overpowered (Herve & Roisin In The Secret Garden Remix)'

#4. Another mix from the Diplo crew, Mad Decent. Although this time it is from Paul Devro. It is a serious 30 min set full of goodness. It includes everyone from the Mad Decent family. Listen to this and enjoy. I am not sure which family member this mix represents. Plus, I think I took that analogy as far as it would go. Maybe too far. I will say that the mix out of Prince into Bode do Role is fantastic. The 303 of the RadioClit track is screaming right into the pleasure part of my brain. This is the stuff you love, but can never sing along with. That is one thing I envy about pop/rock lovers. The Mark Stewart track moving into the Charlene Dance track is also bananas. Click HERE for the music. (iTunes required?) [via Mad Decent]

Tracklist - XLR8R Podcast DJ Mix by Paul D:

1. Capricorn "20 Hz" (Global Cuts)
2. Garth Brooks & Baawawawa (ABC Primetime Special)
3. Mark Stewart "We are Prostitutes (Crookers Remix)" (Soul Jazz Records)
4. Prince "I Would Die For You (Zomby Remix)" (No Label)
5. Bonde Do Role "Cagado" (Mad Decent/Domino)
6. Expendable Youth "Just" Like (No Label)
7. RadioClit "Divine Gosa (Switch Remix)" (RadioClit)
8. Bonde Do Role "Gasolina (Fake Blood Remix)" (Mad Decent/Domino)
9. Mark Stewart "We're All Prostitutes (Crookers Remix) (Soul Jazz Records)
10. Charlene Dance "Mr. DJ (Speaker Junk Tarantula Remix)" (Dirtypop Records)
11. DJ Hype "Pussy Trak" (Bingo Beats)
12. Blaqstarr "Shake it To The Ground (Switch Remix) Feat. Santogold" (Mad Decent)
13. Santogold "Unstoppable (produced by Diplo)" (Lizard King)
14. Shorter Boyz "Bama Gettin' Money" (Shorter Boy Records)

Bonus Music

I have 2 videos to share this week. If you didn't notice, I am trying to make up for the lack of music last week. The first one is "Drivin' Me Wild" by Common featuring Lily Allen. Love the song. It is beautiful. Although, I am not sure about the combat boots with the dress at the beginning. I like the astronaut suit and the white dress with the Nike Air Max so much more. But, if you sing like that, how can I hate on you.

The second video should be watched for 2 reasons: 1st. Becuase it is a great song. 2nd. Because you can see a lot of Tokyo in the video. Lot's of stuff looks familiar. It is a slice of life. Not the exagerated images you often see. Enjoy the video MUSCLES - Sweaty.

That is all.


Monday, September 3


I came across this great sign the other day. (Actually, it's a 2 for 1 deal, cause the pins in the background ain't to shabby either.) I was with my girl in a department store that we don't go to often. We were just checking out the upper floors looking for a quick place to eat. We turned the corner, and ran into this gem of a sign. I love the retro/futuristic feeling of the font. I also love that I found bowling lanes in a department store. It was a bit shocking. So shocking it started a little emotion in me to, I felt the pull of the pins and the big balls. My girl was less than enthused. Oh well, maybe next time.

So, this week I have a bunch of unrelated stuff that has been gathering in my mind and in various folders on my desktop. We will call it leftovers. It is past time to get rid of some of this crap. (The first pic being a prime example.) So, let's get to it.

Just in case some of you had some lingering thoughts about how underground Bathing Ape is, linger no longer. Bathing Ape provided the t-shirts for the huge nationwide NTV 24 hour TV extravaganza. It is all for charity, so I can't hate on them. The event sticks a bunch of celebs on TV for 24 hours to raise money for various good causes. This year was all about the environment and childhood diseases.

They made 300,000 of the t-shirts and sold them all for the low low price of ¥1400. ($12) The "30" on the t-shirt is because this year marks the 30th year they have done this. Oh, I almost forgot the most iconic part of the show. They pick one celeb each year who runs/walks the entire 24 hours. It is an absolute torture to watch. They have 24 hours to finish a 70km course. This year it was a 66 year old comedian. He didn't finish the course in the allotted time, so it turned in to 27 hour TV. Again, I say this is not fun to watch. I only read about it and flicked through it a couple times. I don't want to see things that hurt my eyes.

This thing here is not harmful for your eyes at all.

I have been very lucky to run into some amazing cars lately. I snagged this pic in Shibuya on my way to play some table tennis. The guy driving this Ferrari 430 Spider did nothing to reverse the stereotype of complete asses driving Ferraris. Oh well. If you are wondering what I would drive, if I had to drive a Ferrari. Click HERE to see the 2008 Ferrari 430 Scuderia. I doubt it would make the best starter sports car...but, it is still my favorite current Ferrari. I also ran into another car I have no business driving. Actually, no one has any business driving this thing in a city.

From far away, it looks like your regular everyday Porsche. It is far from ordinary, move closer.

No, this is as serious as you can get without racing tires. This is the 2007 Porsche GT3RS. This thing comes standard with roll bars people. That is how ridiculous it is. I can't imagine what it would be like driving around a busy city. Can you imagine how hard the springs are? How sharp the brake response is? How much power this thing has from just a quick right foot tap?

At first glance the front doesn't look so different from the regular 911's. It is though, with many more scoops and diffusers. The emblem on the hood is not the usual metal one either, it is a sticker to save weight. That is how serious the German's are about this car. I love it. I love the color too. The orange really suits this shape. My 2nd fav detail on the whole car is the color matching brake calipers visible through the massive black wheels.

My favorite detail is the "RS" on the huge rear spoiler. So not needed, but so necessary. The owner of this ride was busy shopping in Gucci while I and a few other people drooled over his car. When he came out, with 3 staff members holding his large bags, it took forever to find places to stash all his loot. No space in the front trunk, very difficult to stick stuff in the back with all the roll bars. What a conundrum. Luckily my man didn't bring his girl shopping with him so they stacked all the stuff on the passenger seat. Smooth. (Not that I was watching and Never!)

And the last hotness I came across was this monster.

This Lamborghini Murcielago surprised me. I came around the corner and BAM! The white monster was just sitting there waiting for me. As curvy and sensual the Porsche is, the Lambo is all straight lines and edgy. Look how far forward the driver's seat is, compared with the rest of the car. It just keeps going and going to fit all the engine in the rear.

The flatness of this car is pretty damn amazing. It is all wide spaces, angles, and clear lines, yet somehow it is full of emotion. This thing exudes passion in a way that the Porsche can't.

The exhaust is pretty sick. I think the center exhaust option works on only a few cars, and this is one of them. It is my 2nd fav detail on this crazy car. My top detail is the real wheels. They are so wide that they stretched the wheel design in 3 dimensions. This pic tries to show that, not all that successfully, sadly.

If you scroll back up you can see the difference between the front and rear wheels. I love it. And that is all for the cars I have seen lately. But don't you worry, I will have my eyes open and my camera at the ready.

Speaking of keeping my eyes open...this product caught my eyes.

So, yeah, these cookies were in the local drugstore. The perfect product for the girl on the go who is a bit hungry and wants bigger breasts. F-cups no less! Strange. I wonder if they sell this kinda crap in drugstores in the US. Anybody? Japan is a great place to live, no? (And I won't even get into the ringtones ladies can download to increase their chest size.)

As you remember the other day, I went to a graf exhibition. As I was there, I was thinking about the huge effect that the whole movement is having, and had for such a long time. It is being used in the mass media all the time, there is even a video game about it. Any person living in any city sees it everywhere. The good, the bad, and the ugly. Lot's of companies co-opt the look to make their ad more edgy. It took me a minute to figure out if this was real graffiti or Nike looking for for more street cred.

I finally figured out it was some writer throwing his shit up on the Nike billboard. But, who knows, maybe Nike paid him to. I kinda like the how it looks together. And Nike is smart to put up such simple ads. They are just begging for somebody to spray all over them. Here are more examples.

I also like the new logo they are using in Tokyo. It is simple but it has a nice balance. (The swoosh is between the kanji characters for Tokyo.) One more pic.

Call me crazy, but I read no clear message in this one. But I don't hate it all. It made me stop and think for a minute, which is about all we can ask of art. Speaking of messages, there is no doubt in this one.

[via Supertouch]

I'm not sure one French graf artist is going to make a whole hell of a lot of difference, but WK INTERACT wants this war to be over. This "Bring Me Back" is a pretty impressive piece if you ask me. But you are an idiot if you are asking me about graffiti. I don't know nothing. Click HERE to see more picks and read a bit more about it.

And finally for today, I went shopping again. I hit the outlets first. New Balance and Adidas were a waste of my time. Not even anything I slightly considered. Nike on the other hand had a bunch of maybes.

Like these Stabs. I like the color combination. I have a t-shirt that would match really well, maybe too well. And it is only the one shirt. No other options. That's a limited wardrobe y'all. Plus, the price was still a bit high.


I was liking these square-dots too. If it was a mesh toe-box instead of the dead looking leather, these would be in my closet already.


These are pretty old, so I was surprised to see them. I carried them around the store for a long time. These were best things they had in the store. The price was a bit dear again. So, in the end, I put them down too. I ate lunch and then took the train back to Tokyo. Before I went home, I stopped in Ueno. I had kinda made up my mind to get the Air Max Lights. Remember these?


Shockingly they didn't have my size. I took it as a sign that I should not get them. So I made my way to the station to go home. But not before stopping in a couple mini-stockists booths. I never find much there. They have a varied selection, some new releases, some collectibles, some used stuff. It is completely hit or miss. Low and behold, I found these!

I nice vintage shoe from 2005. I will share soon. See you guys next week.