Monday, March 11, 2013

This story has a spectacular photo of Tokyo Sky Tree lost in the polluted haze

Tokyo dust storm came complete with China sand | The Japan Times

I've never been to Tokyo Sky Tree.  I prefer the old school tackiness of Tokyo Tower.  In May 2010, I climbed Tokyo Tower's steps and received a little card-- my certificate of achievement.  Then I spent some time at the wax museum where I had flashbacks to all the tawdry little wax museums I forced my parents to take me to on vacations as a kid.  I have a thing for wax museums.

Tokyo Sky Tree is an impressive sight, though.  You take certain trains in and around Tokyo and you'll see it looming behind buildings.  What's the point of Tokyo Sky Tree?  Probably just to have someplace new to go.  A gargantuan novelty.  Someone had the money to build it and so that person did.  Or persons.  A consortium, no doubt.  It takes a group of people to dream up such a useless thing and make it a big, shiny reality.  In an earthquake zone.  But I don't mean to knock Tokyo Sky Tree.  I actually admire it.  I just don't plan to go to the top anytime soon.

Tokyo is kind of my home away from home.  I've become proficient at navigating its train lines and subways.  I've seen and done just about everything you can in Shibuya, Shinjuku, Harajuku, Ikebukuro and Akihabara.  Shimokitizawa (I saw Melt-Banana there the same week I climbed Tokyo Tower) beckons, though, and Kichijoji.  Lately, I'm a bit burnt out on Tokyo but all it would take is the right "live" to lure me back.  There are a lot of bands I've neglected in favor of Melt-Banana and I need to make it up to them.

It's just a bit scary seeing Tokyo this foul.  While the whole "Chinese dust" phenomenon is probably being overplayed in the Japanese media, the air lately hasn't been very kind to people with breathing problems or allergies.  Kafunshou, or hayfever, has really done a number on me this year.  I don't think I've ever been this sick for this long.  It's got me in a bad mood.  Gasping for air like a fish and having a nose that drips whenever you put your head in drawing position-- thereby negating any attempt at making art-- will do that to you.

I probably belong in the high desert of the American southwest.

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