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Showing posts from January, 2013

Snow at a Tokyo Temple and Tokyo Tower

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It snowed January 14 which is a national holiday for those coming of age. I often go to shrines and temples to take pics of kimono-clad girls but there was hardly any to be seen today due to the heavy amount of snow by Tokyo standards.
I went to Zojo-ji Temple in Hamamatsucho just evening was falling. I arrived as they were ringing the evening bell and doing their evening service. It was quite an enchanting and eerie experience to be almost alone in such a populous city with Buddhist monks chanting in the background as the snow fell from the empty skies.
























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Alex Jones' Gun Control Conspiracy - Who is really benefitting?

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In the infamous and hilarious Alex Jones' debacle on Piers Morgan's show recently, Alex Jones starting throwing out false flag accusations amongst his rantings. A false flag is where a government or organization fakes an incident to make it look like someone else did it in order to justify a certain action in response. This is what a number of ardent gun advocates having been saying - that the tragedy of Sandy Hook was not simply the work of a madman but a government false flag operation in order to start the process of disarming Americans.

The problem with that idea is that a number of these advocates having been saying this same thing about other mass shootings as well such as Aurora and Virginia Tech. Some have been saying this as far back as Columbine. They have said after each of these shootings that these incidences are government false flags which are to be used as a pretext to snatch up all our guns before tossing us into FEMA Death Camps.

If that's the case, obvi…

Giant Japanese Snake Festival - Taisita Monjya in Sekikawa, Niigata

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To honor this year's Chinese Zodiac animal the Snake, I offer this look at an interesting unique festival from the small town of Sekikawa in Niigata prefecture where they parade an enormous snake made of bamboo and straw. The snake is 82.8 meters long or about 271.6 feet and weighs about 2 tons requiring 500 people to carry it and is in the Guinness Book of World Record as longest snake made of bamboo and straw (wasn't aware there was such a category).
The festival is a type of Obon celebration - a time when the Japanese remember the spirits of the dead. It also is reminder of a terrible flood which hit Sekikawa in 1967 costing a number of people their lives. The date was August 28th which is why the snake is the exact length of 82.8 to reflect that.
As to why a giant snake, one has to dig further back into the misty past of Sekikawa. Legends say the area was troubled by a giant snake which had been a cursed woodcutter's wife. 
Some centuries ago, a local woodcutter was attac…