Sunday, April 27, 2014

Japan Trip XVII: A Day at Home

First, holy crap, I've been doing most of these posts completely from memory, not really sure of the timeline. But then, I just remembered I brought my Techo with me for the trip and, sure enough, I took note of everything I did, on the days I did them.

I love it when I impress myself, but it's funny how I remembered all these thing (pretty accurately, according to my Techo) but completely forgot that I actually kept record of it all. Memory is weird.

Anyway, we spent most of the fourth day at home, but not idle.
The house was at its fullest that night, since Xan, Steven, Mark, Luca, and Reid all arrived the day before and took up sleeping space. Luckily, there was plenty of space to go around.

The reason Mark and Xan came (with their travel partners in tow) was because, as old members of Starmen.Net, they were going to get interviewed by Jeff for his documentary Earthbound, USA.

That morning we interviewed Mark. Dan and I ran cameras while Jeff himself conducted the interview. In short, Mark is an employee of Capcom in the localization department, and he's been in Japan for many years now--long enough to find the lady who became his wife, get married, and have a daughter old enough to walk, talk, and travel.

After that interview we broke for lunch, traveling down to Tama Plaza to check out their restaurants. We were able to break up into as many as four groups (!) thanks to having Mark, Xan, and Steven around. That said, I think we ended up in just three groups, each one going to a different restaurant.

I don't remember what the others ate (I think one group went to get some kind of special omelets or something?), but I joined a group to get katsu.

Katsu is a blanket term for fried cutlets, usually pork, served with some sort of sauce and shredded cabbage. The concept is actually western in origin, as evidenced by the name: katsu (cuts) is short for katsuretsu (cutlets), so it's really just an english word that has been absorbed into Japanese culture and made unique.

Anyway, our meal also came with soup and rice. I'm not much of a soup person, so I gave mine away. I chowed down on the rice instead, mostly.

Also, I'm not a huge pork fan--I can eat it, but I prefer chicken or beef if there's an option. Luckily, chicken katsu is definitely a thing, so that's what I had. It was pretty good.

After eating, Laura, Jack, and Jenna went to a nearby hair salon to get their hair cut and dyed--Laura went primarily for the cut, Jack and Jenna for the dye.

We also said farewell to Mark who, having completed his task with us, now had to catch a train home. He and Luca had a long way to go.

Back at the house, we interviewed Xan who, along with Camille and Liz, was one of the few girls to attend the early Starmen.Net conventions. The girls are still outnumbered by the boys at these things (the next one looks to have about two guys for every girl), but the situation was compounded by also being awkward teens at the time.

That said, the gender ratio didn't really come up much: Xan has had an interesting life, and Starmen.Net was an important part of it. She had several touching stories to tell.

After the interview was done, the sun was setting. That said, we had just spent a day resting, pretty much, and the night was young. There was still plenty to do...

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