If you've been to this li'l blog before, you probably know I love Peter Payne's J-List side blog. He posts something informative and amusing almost everyday, and when I have nothing to tell you myself I can always count on Peter Payne to spark something. Today's entry was no exception, with a fun discussion of Japan's narrow streets and the strange situations this sometimes causes. I get the blog delivered to my inbox and it's one of the very few advertising-related emails I don't send to the junk folder.
However, as much as I enjoyed the blog entry, what really caught my eye was listing below it for "Restocked photobooks of Old Tokyo." Haikyo Hyoryu - Images of Destruction in Japan. Modern ruins. I'm a visual person and fascinated with imagery of decay and decrepitude. I mean, architecturally. Don't link me to any of those websites with disease imagery or gross photos of accident aftermaths, please. I checked out the books on J-List itself and so should you. I don't mean to shill transparently for the company (that's what the ad up top there is for! Shop early, shop often... Christmas is just five months away!), but at the very least check out the photos they've posted.
There's nothing sadder than abandoned amusements meant for children. You know how Toy Story 2 really milks that concept for all it's worth with toys-- the real thing is infinitely more melancholic. The other images are hauntingly beautiful, otherworldly. Some of them literally look like monuments of some long-lost civilization out among the distant stars, one we reached too late in our space-warping starships. While you're at it, look at the book about the nostalgic stairs of Tokyo, too. For the observant, Japan is just a miracle to behold. From the tacky to the sublime, from the ludicrous to the poignant, Japan has it all.
However, I do have to warn you not to scroll down too far. J-List sells some adults-only products and if you keep going? Well, that way lies... nudity! And madness! And bare-assed naked people! Without any clothes on to cover their nakedly nude naked bodies!