April 03, 2006

# 70

I've stated at various stages of my psychological decline, which is why a reiteration is on its way; I believe twelve weeks from the time of one's holiday completion to be the point at which the human brain instinctively switches from the myriad of perfunctory functions to those likened to a serial killer with a blockbuster necessity to quell the unspoken fix.

Just one fix.

My twelve weeks expired last week. Instead of sitting around dragging my cheeks along our pseudo vinyl-covered floor entertaining the slim chance of absorbing enough spilled honey to squeeze onto a slice of toast, or reach the inevitable conclusion that I was about to stumble upon a fail-safe blueprint buried inside a crack in our humble walls outlining one of three step-by-step procedures to outsmart a forlorn detective with three decades' experience in a hostage negotiation situation by using nothing more advanced than a mobile phone and a box of doughnuts.

Instead, I initiated a plan under the supervision of my wife where an entourage of three clashed heads resulting in the unified theory that we could escape the vortex which, for twelve weeks, had drained us methodically of every milligram of desire to do anything unrelated to our respective jobs.

The plan was to head west like young men using any means of propulsion: tyres, steel girders, rubber soled shoes, bare feet. The reasoning was so that the royal we could see the sun rise and again feel a sense of belonging on and to this colossal sphere.

It was a bloody good plan, methinks.

Within moments, the only two thumbs I owned were raised. Yeeha. Mission was being accomplished with fundamental ease. If you're intrigued about how we went about having a great time, follow the post as gravity herself would.

We commandeered a vehicle of Bavarian origin without protest from the legal owner. Ace. Ignoring the unmistakable flaw with the Deutsch design of said vehicle's mechanism for steering, which should have been a mirror version to where it was, we set off three hours past dawn to discover almost every other yin-yang had chanced upon the same brilliant idea. Double fault.

Ignoring the urge to cram the stick of C4 I had stashed metaphorically inside my petticoat as we were parked in the middle of a 14 kilometre metallic jam somewhere along the fastest stretch of pay-per-use highway in the nation, we cranked the tunes on the miniature jukebox. Moments later, we threw the iPod (head and shoulders the most overrated accessory built to advance anti-socialism) out the window and into a sign to significantly reduce instances of such aural diarrhoea infecting airwaves again. Fine, it was me and I did vent a bit of frustration at stewing inside a comfortable tin can, but I dare you to convince me that it wasn't a justifiable act for the betterment of mankind.

Four hours later, not including a brief stop to check the alignment of our bearings and to free the bladder of liquid retention, we were somewhat closer to putting our clogs over our socks and checking the sights that a foreign district of bright lights we had never before seen had to offer.

We copped our first taste of plum blossoms in Kyoto with all in agreement that they were sexy, though they definitely tasted like most other flowers. Still, as far as nature displaying her colours are concerned, I've seen far worse and the assortment of humans infesting the otherwise tranquil setting proved to be the type of legendary honey that brought Winnie undone.

Then it was off to a pavillion made entirely out of golden cheese, though allcomers were asked to stand well clear without fondling or drooling over the sacred creation. Speaking on behalf of everyone, it was the toughest ask of the entire trip. My stomach grumbled, gurgled and whined at the monumental structure. Suffice to say, the alarm was raised by several members of the human fraternity when I ventured into the water. I made it part of the way there before I was ably swatted across the noggin with what felt like a block of mozarella.

We covered the remaining distance to get to our hotel room in Osaka in less than five billion minutes, checked in, competed with the reception staff to see whose head could touch the floor while remaining upright (they won hands-down), and then dodged lunatics of all manner as they rode their two-wheeled bulls on footpaths.

We made it to a safe house the length of a giant stick of celery underneath a series of train tracks. It served food from the sea with a strong will for life. Not even distress calls to family or histrionics climaxing in an epileptic fit could prevent their demise.

The locally made transparent nectar, served hot to extinguish internal demons as gravity powered its progress, was even better.

Lights out.

Come dawn, everyone's eyelids agreed with everyone's stomachs; a major breach of protocol was in effect. We'd all slept through the code red and gave four-fifths of a rat's arse knowing that punctuality does not a holiday make.

Eventually, we materialised in full cry inside a large hall with a squared circle battle ring at centre stage. Obese men with effeminate hairdos paraded around in oversized g-strings, occasionally bumping into each other or hurling a fellow fatty boombah into the crowd without as much as an apology. It was like witnessing Prisoner unfold in front of our collective peepers with males cast as leads. It made us all introspective as we were again united in agreement that the results of untamed hunger were definitely high on the agenda of things to avoid.

Meanwhile, it became clearer with each passing gut wobble that these curiously obese creatures of war were adored to the heights usually reserved for teen pop stars. My personal favourite was Japanese Army Knife Jelly Belly, who could mould his shapely figure into a multitude of striking positions. What's more, he won his bout.

The hefty battles continued for several hours as the non-participants curdled in the heat of the venue's stifling heat. The eventual winner, a lad I had had my eyes on since the word go because of his daring high-wire act prior to the commencement of the main battles, walked away the grinner as the crowd hurled priceless seat cushions into his path as a show of payment for an outstanding job. That, too, was ace.

The feeling of freezing the instant we ventured outside is something one cannot convey through words alone: it's a feeling one should experience at least seven times in one's lifetime in order to grasp the full effect of what it's like to be powerless to nature's frigid ways.

We survived thanks to some curb-side pancakes then headed to the highest point in the city in order to see if we could repeat the sensation. It didn't work, but the lights atop the concrete were pretty.

As the following day snuck up on us, eventually to overtake us, the fearless five parted company and headed our separate ways in search of aesthetic desires to add fuel to the Molotov cocktail inside our beating hearts. Mrs Kaufman and I went in search of nature's beasts, such as these deer, who displayed wanton disregard for public codes of carnal decency slightly north-east of where ice sculptures bearing our images had all but melted.

We grew tired of perving after a few hours without action of our own so we continued to head north. We arrived once more in the Tokyo of central Japan, Kyoto, a short time later and set up a tent in a hotel with three stars atop its roof and within crawling distance of the city's core.

It tasted good, bringing me to the realisation that if I had a few spare hundred million Yankee dollars to play with I'd set up a half-decent eatery in that fair town.

If you've never been to Kyoto, dear reader, what are you waiting for? Go!

The hotel was clean and costly but the bed was twice as wide as our normal single futon affair back home. We ensured it was a memorable night by turning off the lights way before midnight. Oyasumi nasai.


Anyway, more sights were seen, loads more photos were taken and then we shifted our rears onto the Hikari bullet train for another two-hours of sleep before returning to normality of home.



benjibopper said...

It's so cute when people say 'arse' and spell tire with a 'y'.

My wife and I were considering the purchase of an ipod for our impending world tour and came to much the same conclusion: much better to immerse one in the sounds of the surroundings, when in Kyoto or Helsinki.

ps. Regarding our previous musical conversation I also recommend 'Death Cab for Cutie' from Vancouver I believe.

Under the Radar said...

Did you buy any deer poo?

Kaufman said...

BB: The peculiarities of a shared language are endless. Yo, don't you be pushin' on ma homie dialect, G, for I iz champeen o da hood, Flava Flav.

The way I see it, the iPod (and tiny fuckers like it) are good for two things: Stay tuned for details as I've gone and typed something (again) without having thought about it.

I wish you and your significant other a most splendid shared experience without surreal distractions, unless you plan to be a participant in local drug-taking culture, in which case, do well.

UTR: Why purchase when it's freely available at every corner (and in between every corner)? Also, how does one make best use of deer poo? I'm thinking along lines of practical joking which involve thick-shakes and ignorant friends.

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...


The excellence of a holiday.

I am just about to finish 'Memoirs of a Geisha', so I am keen to see a little bit of Japan for myself.

My initial penchant for a visit was borne out of 'Shogun', which is an even better book anout an englishman who runs aground in feudal japan.

Great pics. Who is the lady in front of the temple?

Kaufman said...

I never read Memoirs of a Geisha, believing that one day there'd be a movie made that would save me the countless hours of multi-tasking while on the throne.

That one worked out well because I really enjoyed the visuals the movie had to offer (a master stroke, really). I was also one of few around the globe applauding come the closing credits because my opinion hadn't been skewed by expectation. I felt the plot blended with the ease of sedatives taking effect into the overall eye-candy nature of the tale.

Unless I'm mistaken, the lady in front of the temple is someone unfamiliar to my five senses. My sixth sense tells me she's trouble.

Could I be wrong?

reverendtimothy said...

I am two chapters away from finishing Geisha as well. It's amazing what a movie deal can do. I read it before a long time ago, but I forgot it.

Anyway, that sounds awesome. I'm planning to hit Japan for SummerSonic in August, but that may or may not go ahead. This post makes me wanna make sure it does, though.


Kaufman said...

RT: It will definitely be worth it. Bring every cent of your retirement fund. If you intend to see the sights and travel all around the country, I recommend purchasing a train pass for J while still in Oz (because you can't get them here). Last I heard one goes for around AU $500, which may sound costly but most definitely isn't. It gives you unlimited travel on JR lines, including the shinkansen (bullet).

If it's a goer, send us an email care of that Secret Squirrel address and I'll see what I can do with regards to free board.*

* May cost you a can of deodorant or three.

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...


Blog get-togethers.

Come on!

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

p.s. You could be wrong.

That was me in disguise.

Part of my GNVQ/Btec Ninjitsu practical was to stalk someone I know without them recognising me.

This means I got an A-.


benjibopper said...

Flava Flav a punk bitch!

Captain Berk said...

I tried to beam Flava Flav aboard my ship once to host a party.

I got tired of him asking me what time it was, so I told him it was home time and beamed him off the ship.

He just couldn't get his head around stardates.

benjibopper said...

Berk it was nice of you to give Flav that nice giant clock as a parting gift. What planet is that clock from anyway?

Kaufman said...

UTMG: You sure know your disguises. I could've sworn I got a glimpse of a camel toe. Woo!

BB: No arguments here. The lads sure did shine though during those icky late '80s/early '90s, didn't they?

Capt. Berk: In my younger days as a bar-room crooner I once had the moves put on me by a female news reader in Adelaide. The affair never got off the ground because I lost track of time and drank myself under several tables. Hooray for industry functions!

benjibopper said...

Chuck D on the other hand is a genius of the highest calibre. I guess every genius needs a sideshow freak. I'm actually looking for one myself, let me know if you have any recommendations.