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Sunday, January 25, 2015


Monday, January 5, 2015

Best wishes for a great 2015!

Be well,
Pato

Friday, December 19, 2014

Happy Holidays from benthictones.com! WHO'S ON BASS-Now available online/オンライン発売中 at CD BABY and iTunes



(English follows Japanese)
皆様、
謹賀新年。昨年は大変お世話になりありがとうございました。
本年もどうぞよろしくお願い致すます!

最近リリースされたCDフーズ オン  ベースはオンライン発売中!
サイラス チェスナット(ピアノ)カール アーレン(ドラム)
是非ご覧下さい!


Who's On Bass on sale at CD BABY

Who's On Bass on sale at iTunes







Seasons Greetings!
As you may know, I recently released an album featuring the amazing talents of Cyrus Chestnut (piano) and Carl Allen (drums).  (You can check out some clips from the recording session in my previous post from November 29th).

I am not exactly "tech-savvy" and therefore I have finally gotten WHO'S ON BASS released digitally-just in time for the holidays!



Who's On Bass on sale at CD BABY

Who's On Bass on sale at iTunes






Have a wonderful holiday and be well!
Pat



Saturday, November 29, 2014

Sunday, March 20, 2011

What's Going Down In Tokyo-town?

What does one do when they have too much time on their hands? Read? Sew? Design a more efficient way to make ice cubes? No. The answer: BLOG. When this equation is reversed, it is made very clear that the general population has more spare time than they can handle. This surplus also leads people, yours truly included, to be permanently connected to a steady stream of sensational slop that tends to take our minds away from the rational and on to the Hollywood-inspired-end-of-days-omg-irrational (I would quote Oscar Wilde if I thought the word "art" was appropriate. Oh, where is mimesis when you need it?). How could a world so gifted and blessed act like such cattle? Because it's easy.

We live in a "developed" world of convenience. For those of us in the "developed" world, developed really means the size of the seats required to accommodate the increasing jeans sizes that have "developed" in the last 20 years. Perhaps over-developed is more appropriate? This has led us to the inability to perform basic tasks that were once requisite of almost the entire populace (Rockefeller-types excluded). While news reports of food shortages in Tokyo were spread about the world-wide-web, my wife went to the local bakery and bought fresh bread. We ate veggies from our local stand. Milk was obviously absent (and is still missing in many places) but for a culture that is dairy-ily challenged, I shall have to let that go. Rice is also short but is still available at all of the MANY restaurants that are still open everyday. This most certainly has made lives a little more challenging in T-town but we should not forget the bigger picture: there are also hundreds-of-thousands of people in the Tohoku region who are living in far more basic conditions that should get priority.

It does bother me that the headline about the current crisis in Japan is more about a "potential" threat from the nuclear disaster that could be rather than the "kinetic" catastrophe from the tsunami that IS. Unfortunately, this post-emergency amnesia is all too common in our world of 24 hour news. Anyone remember the 2004 tsunami, the Haiti earthquake, or even Hurricane Katrina, not to mention our servicemen and women in Iraq and Afghanistan? We move on so quickly that we often leave behind the most important part of any golf swing: follow through.

I guess that this rant will have to come to a point. Otherwise, you will quickly move on to the next post, blog, or tweet-maybe you already have-DOH! Now, the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster (Yes, disaster because "incident" is indeed too "incidental") is and will be a huge problem for the region. I am no scientist and won't postulate on the half-life of Cesium but I will say that the everyday pattern of life for people in Fukushima/Miyagi/Iwate will have to change. It will be a challenge and may have some impact on lives elsewhere but barring any Book of Revelations movie script scenario, life will go on. Please keep your wits about you and remember that most of what you read, and are reading, is opinion.

Be well,
P.G.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

O-Eshiki

Just a quick note...

The block party is a great American institution. Who knew how fun it was to set yourself up in the middle of the street and drink beer? Most people aren't daring enough to try it when the roads are open to traffic though...chickens.

Anyhow, my neighborhood (Ikegami) hosts an annual "matsuri" for the Buddhist priest Nichiren which tops any block party, anywhere. For 3 days, tens of thousands of people come to my neighborhood to celebrate the death of Nichren. I suppose it's really just a very big, 700 year long Irish funeral. Well, this year was a lot of fun. Below is a short clip of the parade that started at 5PM and ended around 12AM. The one saving grace for the marchers was that they were not wearing MRD uniforms.

Be well,

Pat

video

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Eating "Hell": Summer in Japan




For those of you who are afraid of the Devil, please read no further. The rumors that the Devil went down to Georgia (the boiled peanuts one, not the Black Sea one), have been greatly exaggerated. In fact, he has found a home on the island of Hokkaido.




Now, the irony is that Hokkaido is the coldest part of Japan. In the winter, it makes Winnipeg look like Palm Springs. When you see pictures of 20-foot-high snow drifts, you are likely looking at dear old Hokkaido. Why would Lucifer, Beelzebub, Satan, Alec Baldwin (or whatever name you know him as) choose Hokkaido? The answer is simple: Ramen.




In my college years, Ramen held a very important place in my life. Other than feeding the tapeworm, it allowed me to ingest massive amounts of MSG for only 12 cents a packet, one of the side affects of which is hair loss and weight gain. I am just starting to really feel it now.




In Japan, Ramen is not bought at the A & P. It is is a delicacy borrowed from China and consumed in restaurants. There are many varieties of Ramen: miso, soy, tonkatsu, vegetable, and of course zigoku (Hell). Recently, I had the pleasure of sampling this sinful dish. Zigoku Ramen is unusual in more ways than just nomenclature. You can order it to your specific pain threshold. Dante could never have envisioned the complexity of the recipe. The scale goes from Zero to incinerator, based on the number of spoonfuls of chili powder you can stomach. Usually, Japanese food is served without the input of the patron-you get what the chef says you're going to get, how and when he says so, much akin to dinner at the Glynn household. Good thing I like casserole. Anyhow, I ordered Ni-chome, which is 2 heaping tablespoons of chili powder added to the soup broth. It was good and indeed hot, although it did look like the "eyeball soup" from The Temple of Doom and there was no sign of the devil. In fact, he never showed up. Rather, his old friend Montezuma paid a brief visit a few hours later. I have to say that I'm glad it wasn't Alec Baldwin.




Be well,


Pato