Jan 10, 2005

Random pic #8: Fruit freak show

Captured at an exotic fruit retailer in Shibuya. Okay, so this pic isn't timely in the slightest and most of us have probably seen similar photos already. But it's one of my favorites. And with all the toxic train wrecks and natural disaster action going on lately, I thought it would be nice to focus on some tasty - not to mention space-saving - results of human genius.

Note the 50-yen mini pineapple toward the lower right. Quite a deal compared with the square watermelon's 12,000 yen price tag!


At 1/10/2005 3:37 PM, Blogger Safety Neal said...

That is a very cute little pineapple. I've never seen a small one, they only sell big ones here in the States, as far as I can tell.

I recieved your holiday postcard, which was great. I was wondering if you could put that image up or at least enlighten us on the wardrobe choices and their significance.

At 1/11/2005 5:48 AM, Blogger eBohn said...

Yo Safety! And are you reading, John? (he asked, too)

I really don't want to post that pic on the page, but you can find it by clicking the clickable dot ...
It's a digital snap of a print photo, so there are some border issues you might kindly ignore.

The card itself is a New Years greeting that Japanese traditionally send every year to friends, coworkers, and anyone else they want to keep socially well-lubricated. Really cool people send and receive hundreds. And they get delivered starting on Jan. 1, so mailmen usually don't have their holidays until after the 3rd or so.

Nengajou (they're called) can have a picture on them or not, but they typically contain an image somewhere of the coming year's Chinese calendar animal. 2005 is the chicken, or rooster, or whatever. Since we finally had our Japanese wedding reception this past November, to meet all of Rie's relatives, we opted to use our picture from that day. Therefore our clothing is traditional Japanese wedding garb.

Is that more than you wanted to know?

At 1/11/2005 11:42 PM, Blogger Safety Neal said...

You know I'm the inquisitive type. No, that's not more than I wanted to know. But knowing that you were wearing traditional Japanese wedding garb does answer my main question.

You have something in your right hand in the picture...what is that? And what is the white powder-puff looking thing at your midsection? And is the hat traditional for Japanese brides?

Feel free to tell me to shut up at any point. ;-)>

At 1/12/2005 3:00 PM, Blogger John said...

You bet I'm reading.
And you answered my question(s) splendidly.

I still can't believe that a square watermelon costs 12,000 yen. I can't think of a comparably priced fruit over here, though I guess caviar is similar in terms of value and space-savings.

At 1/13/2005 8:02 PM, Blogger eBohn said...

Hi, John. Caviar. Mmmmm... space savings...

Keep the observant questions coming, Neal. Otherwise I forget what to explain and what to skim over. The thing in my hand is a sensu, or foldable hand-held fan... you know the type. As for the white puff hanging from my midsection, I didn't even think to ask while the kimono people were dressing me. It's kinda like a koosh ball, only with hundreds of nylon threads instead of rubber. I assumed it was just to decorate the cord that holds the overcoat together in front. Yes, the hat Rie's wearing is traditional... but typically worn only long enough to take the photo. That plus the decoration-encrusted wig she's got on beneath are adding an extra several pounds for her neck to hold upright.

"Senior picture" poses in high school always seemed cheesy to me, but these Japanese wedding pics take the cake - there is one pose, and one pose only. The photographer controlled our positioning down to the individual finger level. So that grip I have on the fan is certified 100% weddingpic-appropriate.

But if you think that's goofy, the group photo with our families in it was an orchestrated version of the same. Everyone in the front row - Rie and I, our parents and any grandparents - sits. Normal so far, but the men's knees are spread shoulder-width apart, and hands are placed on thighs in very unnatural-looking loose fists with the palms down. In their left hands, the two fathers grip a pair of white gloves which they never put on and only have possession of until everyone has said "susheee."

At 1/13/2005 10:03 PM, Blogger Safety Neal said...

Thanks for the answers, that's very interesting, if a bit strange to my American sensibilities.


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