Things I’m into now

As I ease into this blogging thing again, I figured I’d give a little update into some of the stuff I’ve been into lately – and if I’m feeling frisky, I might even do a follow-up post with my dislikes!

  • Fortnite: This game is unbelievably popular among American kids. I wasn’t into it until I watched people play on stream for a while and got a feel for how it works. And it’s actually a lot of fun! It’s hard to win, but there’s something very satisfying about gathering materials and giving it a shot. If I’m being honest, I really don’t have any business playing the game because I am horrible and will die to any 11 year old boy who has even a little skill. But there are times when the matchmaking system pushes me down to a low enough rank that I can actually outbuild people and even sometimes win a game. And that’s suuuuper satisfying. Reach out if you’d like to join the Mutant Frog squad (Look for “Radamukun”).
  • Pokemon Go: A top-10 thing I miss about Japan is the Pokemon Go scene. In central Tokyo there are so many players it made the game much easier to play, especially the higher-level raids. Even so, my interest in the game has held up even here in the States. I live within walking distance of gyms and stops, and the game keeps adding enough new content that I never get tired of it.
  • Cooking: I taught myself to cook in Japan because I was sick of not being able to eat American staples like lasagna, cookies, and roast chicken. Now that I have an oven those things are easier to come by, and I’ve been able to broaden my horizons a bit too. Now I make roasts and baked ham in the oven, burgers and hot dogs on the grill, spaghetti sauce and Cuban rice and beans on the stovetop, and Indian-style curry in the slow cooker. Mrs. Shoko has continued making Japanese food, so with a few glaring exceptions (we almost never have sushi now) we are enjoying a wider variety of foods here in the States.
  • Hip-hop, especially Soundcloud rap: Despite their reputation for being drugged-out and lazy, there is a lot of talent among today’s big rappers – it’s too bad they all seem to die at 21… I love Lil Peep, Juicewrld, Yung Lean, Yung Pinch, NBA Youngboy, and so many more. I started getting more into newer rap in Japan after discovering Riff Raff, and since moving here my obsession has only grown. It might be one of those things that I’m way too old for, but I don’t care.

You’ll see that “blogging about Japan stuff” isn’t on the list, partly because the fire inside me to do that has largely gone out. As I mentioned in the last post, I do a lot of that sort of thinking for work, which kind of ruins it when I want to do something that takes me my mind *off* of work.

These are all things I do with what little free time I have – most of my waking hours are spent working, taking care of kids, or dealing with house-related issues. But everyone needs a hobby or two! These have helped me get through the various difficulties of real life, particularly during quarantine. What has everyone else been up to? Sound off in the comments!

2 thoughts on “Things I’m into now”

  1. Well, I spent 10 years away from Japan working on startups in Canada and the US. So my 20s were in Japan, my 30s in NA, and now in my 40s I am back in Japan. Now that I have returned, I am of course discovering lots of new things, but also “re-discovering” some things I thought I knew, with the benefit of a little age, experience (and possibly wisdom?). It has been humbling.

    So, *I* am back on the Japan blogging wagon, but I don’t expect all of MF to be. I was pretty burned out when I left here too, so it is understandable. However, one thing I really appreciated from you guys is your deep dives into more fringe (née interesting) topics, such weird cults, obscure historical incidents, etc.

    For Adamu, this might be more specific to you, but US-Japan relations from the perspective of DC would be awesome if you have any insights there. Japan’s stock in the international community seems to be eclipsed by China, but Japan is one of the major partners in the new(ish) IndoPac alliance structure. For people in DC, is Japan-relations a humdrum affair? Or one of importance?

    Or you could just post about your fav video games, that’s cool too!

  2. I hate to disappoint, but because my work involves those issues I won’t be directly discussing them here (that’s part of what I mean when I say my job “scratches the blogging itch”). At the same time, I am thinking of some ideas that should keep things interesting, we shall see.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *