Wow! One thing I really like about Japan is that women still dress like women. I mean, on any given day, just about all the girls riding the trains are wearing dresses and are dressed up to kill.
Now Bloomberg reports that these sexy fashions are now trends for mountain climbing too as Japanese girls are mountain climbing in mini-skirts?
Forget the ice ax and $500 climbing boots. The mode du jour for today’s female mountain hikers in Japan is a miniskirt and leggings.
Not in the winter!
The North Face, a maker of Gore-Tex waterproof jackets, andAlpine Tour Service Co. are targeting “yama girls,” or mountain girls, the nickname for the growing number of women who are taking to the hills of Japan wearing short pants or fleece skirts with leggings and designer trekking boots.
“I want to wear something cute like a skirt,” said Machiko Miyauchi, 25, who made her first ascent of Mount Fuji, Japan’s highest peak, earlier this year after buying new equipment and shoes. “Climbing is healing. You can breathe fresh, clean air
Who would have guessed that mountain climbing would be a place to pick up girls? The article continues:
Japan’s fashion scene has a record of establishing cult trends that sweep the industry, typically for a few years, such as the “ganguro” look that mixed deep fake tans with white lipstick, brightly colored clothes and orange-to-blond hair. Tokyo ranked 14th this year in Global Language Monitor’s annual list of world fashion capitals, trailing Hong Kong and Shanghai in Asia.
The nation’s top climbing spot is the 3,776 meters-high (12,388 feet) Mount Fuji, within sight of Tokyo, where the number of trekkers rose 9.9 percent to 320,975 in July and August, according to a report by the Environment Ministry. About 12.3 million people hiked Japan’s mountains last year, compared with 590,000 in 2008, according to a 2010 Japan Productivity Center White Paper on Leisure, published in July.
“Mount Fuji seems to be a catalyst for many people,” said Machiko Ito, who plans trekking tours at Yama-kei Publishers Co. “It’s like going to Tokyo Disneyland -- people get this feeling that everyone else is going, so they will too.”
Alpine Tour and Yama-kei offered a women-only tour to Fuji for 28,000 yen ($347) in July, and plan two more all-female tours to other locations in December.
“Single women are spending their spare time on something fashionable and good for their health, as they can’t do it once they get married,” said Toshihiro Nagahama, chief economist at Dai-Ichi Life Research Institute in Tokyo. “Mountaineering is luring in female fans.”
Mountaineering is luring in females fans!? Really? There's no way my wife would climb a mountain like that. She is a typical Tokyo girl of her generation: that means boutiques and shopping centers are the extent of her recreational activities.
Wow! Maybe there more to going outdoors and just nature views too? Wow! Mountain climbing with girls in mini-skirts? Forgive me but this is definitely a case of "Ladies first!"
Goodbye, David Bowie.... You were the very first that made me crazy about one rock star and not just one song... You were the first one that I took drugs with and got high listening to... You were the one that made me hate my dark and wavy hair: I wanted to have straight blonde hair so I could make it orange...
Because of you, I stayed indoors and never got a suntan in my entire life; that is why at nearly 60 today, I have no wrinkles. You were also the one who showed me that it was OK not to be the most popular boy in school and to be different and to be myself.
David Bowie, I love you. You changed my life. I will never forget. ........For many years, David Bowie made me laugh and scream and sing and dream... Yesterday, for the first time in a long time, he made me remember how to cry again. ------------------
In Japan, it is customary for family and friends to get-together on New Year's morning and have sake and a toast along with some words - a sort of prayer - for the New Year. This year, I sat and had a cup of sake and the words of the speaker - a priest who survived World War II - really shook me in their solemnness, stark realism and simplicity. He said, "This next year may see the world full of war and no one knows what is going to happen to the economy. We may be seeing the start of the next great war and the next great depression. No one knows if they will even be alive tomorrow." He took a breath of exasperation - as if to suggest, "I've seen this all before" - and then he added, The best one can do is to always try their best and to protect their health and survive it." We all held our glasses high in the air and said, "Kanpai!" (cheers) and drank our sake.
I knew I was hearing the words of a very wise and experienced man. Do your best and also protect your health in 2016. Happy New Year! Be well.
I'm glad I did that and played in that band. It was a great experience.
(Left to right: Johnny Brewton, Peter MacKenzie, Bob Rogers, me (crouching with rifle). Dead on the ground was our dear friend Arya Sabahi.)
The Rotters played lots of shows with famous bands and we had, actually, more than one song released on 7 inch analogue vinyl single... I once saw the first pressing of our debut single on sale in a record store for $750 (USD). That was about 20 years ago. I have heard that our second single is even more valuable. After that band broke up, I floundered in a few other bands, but never really did anything that was as exciting as the Rotters... I thought... Until this morning... This morning I opened up my Facebook and my jaw dropped to my socks! My old friend who was the drummer in another band project we had made in the early 80s had tagged me in a post showing where a record we made back in those days had sold at auction for $1,350 this year!
I couldn't believe it! "The Wuffy Dogs" makes the Top 10 list for the most expensive items sold on an Internet music auction site!? What?
In brief: A few years after the Rotters broke up, my friend's and I made this band, called the Wuffy Dogs. It was my university room-mate Peter MacKenzie and my older brother, Bob and a really talented young drummer named Johnny Brewton and me. We never played live but I was convinced that some of the songs I had written could be radio hits (again) so I conned my friends to get together and record some tracks.
The recordings were done at some local studio (I forget the name) near my home. We recorded 4 songs, I wrote 3 of them and sang (screamed) on those 3 too. Pete wrote the "Radio-friendly" single and sang on that.
When the recordings were done, I tried to get us aired on KROQ in Los Angeles, but there was no fire. Nothing was happening with this record. I was kind of surprised. It seemed so easy with the Rotters.
We pressed about 250 or so of these records and I threw most of them away when I moved to Japan in 1983.
I hear that record collectors today call this particular record one of the "Holy Grail" of 7 inch records from those days.
But, back then, when we made these records, I couldn't give them away! Now, this summer, someone paid over thirteen-hundred dollars for one!? WTF?!
I was so happy to see this news! It was the best Christmas present I have received in years. Thank you so much for allowing me to brag!
To think that the effort we made over 30 years ago finally gets some recognition today... Unbelievable!
As my dear friend Ken aways says, "Dream as if you will live forever. Live as if you will die tomorrow!"
Thank you, er, destiny or fate, or just plain good luck, and being in the right place at the right time and making the effort.
Folks, live without regrets! - Mike in Tokyo Rogers
* As one of my dear friends pointed out, even after all these years, it's nice to still be wanted.
(Me with The 50 Kaitenz! Left to right: Dory, Bogie, Me, Danny (I'm the handsome one!) - Go "Like" their FB page! https://www.facebook.com/the50kaitenz/)
Mike (in Tokyo) Rogers' Top 50 Best Songs of 2015 マイク・ロジャースの2015年のトップ５０曲 （１から５０の順番リストじゃない！）
These are my favorite songs and/or something from a favorite artist of the year. There is no order from 1 ~ 50. These are just my favorite 50 listed as I played them on my Year-End radio show special. Now, some of these songs were not released in 2015... In fact, a few are several years old. But so what? I play alternative and underground stuff so this year was the first time I had heard them and it's my countdown, so there! Also, these songs were chosen by my iTunes software as the Top 50 songs I played from October, 1 2014 until October 30, 2015.... Songs that I have been heavily playing since November (and there's lots of them) will be on the 2016 chart, so stay tuned!
I have placed videos with the songs whenever and where ever possible.
The Smittens - One Hundred Roses
Fabienne Delsol - Laisse tomber les filles
Knife Pleats - One Step Too Far
Messer Chups - Sex Euro And Evils Pop
Barrence Whitfield and the Savages - The Corner Man
The 50 Kaitenz - サムクックが聞こえる This is also one of Japan's best and, by far most entertaining bands. These guys are the closest thing to Japan's Ramones while retaining kick ass originality and great tunes. Check them if you can!
Fabienne Delsol & The Bristol - Questions I Can't Answer
Clara Belle and the Creeps - I Just Wanna Dance
The Just Joans - Hey Boy...You're Oh So Sensitive!
The Ettes - Take it With You
Mirror Trap - New Trance
(Sorry. No video for this song, but try this one: The Mirror Trap - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvZEWO2TsVM)
Doll Skin - Family of Strangers
Lola Dutronic - Go Fuck Yourself
(Well there's no video for this great song and I think the only radio show in the world that plays this great tune is my show. But never fear, Lola Dutronic had one of my Top 5 Fave Songs of 2014 and here it is! Enjoy! LOLA DUTRONIC - Everybody Loves You When You're Dead
Girlpool - Alone At The Show
Kovak - My Boyfriend Is A Rockstar
(Awesome tune. No video available. So try this out: Kovak - Sex Electrichttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AadcyBl00NM)
The Routes - Day & Night
Allo Darlin' - Kiss Your Lips
Messer Chups - Difficult Love
Barrence Whitfield and the Savages - Rock N Roll Baby
The Jacques - Pretty DJ
Messer für Frau Müller - The Best Girl In the USSR
THE PRIVATES - ACTION WOMAN
(Japan's "The Privates" have been compared to the famed Buzzcocks. The lead singer of this band, Tatsuji Nobuhara will also star in "A Japanese Rock N Roll Ghost Story." Check it! But, sorry. No video for this song, but try this one: The Privates - Drive All Night:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dixV0AAxsdE)
Vienna Ditto - Feeling Good
Courtney Barnett - Pedestrian At Best
THE MONSTERS - BLOW UM MAU MAU
A.J. and the Jiggawatts - Get Wild
The Man - Gabba Gabba Hey
Potty Mouth - Cherry Picking
Taffy - Suicidal Bunny
Mozes And The Firstborn - Peter Jr.
Messer Chups - Go Satan Go
The Just Joans Some Boys Are Bigger Than Others
Su ko D Koi - Busu (Ugly)
The Jackets - Wasting My Time
The Two Tens - Scene
Dog Party - Peanut Butter Dream
Titty Twister - SPEEDBALL BABY
The History of Apple Pie - You're So Cool
Wolf Alice - Moaning Lisa Smile
THE NEATBEATS - Snakey Baby
China Rats - To Be Like I
Dirty Fences - Judy (Don't Go)
Have You Ever Seen The Jane Fonda Aerobic VHS? - Shämäläin
The HaveNots - Rock'n'Roll Weekend
Purple - Wallflower
UME - Chase It Down
Motobunny - Let's Go Out
Thanks to Kona Cindy, Alex Kish, Kayla Williams, Dave McLean, Aya Fukuta, Ken Nishikawa and Rodney Bingenheimer (Rodney on the Roq). You guys are the only people in the entire music industry who teaches me music that I don't already know about. That's what happens to you when you work in the music industry and you become a 60-year-old man. Really!