Hamish Downie’s News Sushi #124: Morsels of News From Japan and Beyond

Hamish keeps serving the best News Sushi!
Hooray! More News Sushi for you to enjoy!
Editor Note:It is Friday and that means it is time for the World Famous, soon to be Intergalactic Famous, News Sushi from our very own, Hamish Downie. Hamish brings us a decidedly different slant on Pop Culture as viewed through the lens of a non-native living in Japan.

Thank you (ありがとうございました) Hamish, for your insights.

こんにちは!Which means “Hello”!


Osaka seems to have had an early rainy season and has skipped right to summer, with temperatures in the high twenties (or eighties if you are American). As of writing, I hope to see the fireflies on Thursday (yesterday as of publishing). I did a video on seeing the fireflies a couple of years ago, check it out here:

This past month, I’ve been overseeing the final touches on my new short film, “The Last Anomaly”. The animation is now finished, and next Thea Riley is doing the music. I also got to do a 60 minute presentation on the Golden Age of Cinema, so I’m thinking of recording and posting it. It was a lot of work, but I’m proud of it.

There is a lot of bad news in the world. Sometimes it seems more so than others. This week, I hope I can provide you with some escapism. To help you in this journey, let’s start with the song I co-wrote, “Write”:

Is it bad to love a song you helped make? I love that song.


If, like me, you are still too nervous to travel, but would like to (and probably need to) escape… I’ve collected some videos for you to watch that will take you to some new and exciting places, and to try some new and exciting foods.

Firstly, from Where Next Japan (@wherenextjapan):

“I traveled to Bhutan in 2016, and took a lot of footage which has been sitting in my harddrive, ignored since then. I finally cut something together to show the beauty of Bhutan, its people and culture. I hope to return there again one day.”

Now, let’s go to a traditional Japanese home with Dean Newcombe:

“This is my wife’s family home in Nara. Keiji and I have always wanted to show people why it’s so special. Finally we could.”

runAway website:

Social Media
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/runawayjapan/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/runawayjapan

Back to Where Next Japan, recently Felicity did an interview with Writers in Kyoto legend, Robert Yellin:

And more from WIK, here’s Sheila Cliffe:

“Sheila Cliffe is much more than a Kimono enthusiast who wears the traditional Japanese garments every day. She did her PhD thesis on the History, Traditions and Fashion of Kimono as an important aspect of Japanese culture which involved over 3 years of research and interviews with over 30 people in the industry from designers to makers, stylists and influencers.

Sheila started her Kimono journey studying Kimono as an art and learning the traditional stylings to get her license. But once certified she has found a lot of freedom in mismatching kimono with western influences and sparking interest in the younger generations in Japan and around the world.”

Social Life of Kimono Book: https://amzn.to/2LebpOv
Kimono Sheila Style Photo Book: https://amzn.to/3cx0bjj

Sheila on Social Media:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kimonosheila/


All this talk is making me hungry… how about this egg-based creation from Tamagoya (literally translates as Egg Shop):

Fabulously fluffy custard brûlée pancakes at Cafe brunch TAMAGOYA
(Mishima City, Shizuoka Prefecture)

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A post shared by Grape Japan (@grape_jp)

Read more here: https://grapee.jp/en/200210
Shop website: http://izu-tamagoya.com/




On a sunny day in 2009, two women go on a first date in this new short lesbian film from the director of “How to grow a tiger lilly” and the editor of LoverGIrl, Anthony Aguiar. Stars Mandy Brown and Ileana Contreras.


My friend, Steve Edwards has released his debut book, “The Tombstone Express”. From the back cover, “The public thinks he’s a motorcycle cop, but he’s a civilian, and an inexperienced rider at that. This new job as a police motorcycle escort for funeral processions is the best job he’s ever had, affording him the respect and dignity that has so far eluded him. But can he make ends meet, pursuing his interest in bikes and cemeteries, leading to a better life? A colorful cast of characters help and hinder in his struggle to find meaning as they deliver the hearse and the deceased on its final journey to the grave. With constant reflections on mortality and a distinct sense of humor, Edwards tells his story with unflinching honesty and insight.”

Says Steve:

“It’s official! My book is finally out there in the world in every format on virtually every platform. I hope all of you that have been eager to get a copy will find it on their preferred site in the universal link below. You only get one chance to announce your first book, so I hope everybody will share this with everyone you know and please be sure to review! Like a good bike, the book needs traction. I personally prefer the ebook version, in full color with no shipping costs or waiting time. It’s a very visual book, as you will see, and the audiobook has a lot of unique qualities that make it a distinct listening experience, narrated by yours truly.”

Get it here: https://books2read.com/u/mv1nZX

Keith Levesque with Steve’s debut book

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A post shared by Keith Levesque (@keithlevesque83)


Finally, let’s finish off with our hot link of the week.

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A post shared by Ethan Schellin シェレン イースン🌴 (@ethan_yuta_fitness)

I hope you have a great weekend! Thanks for stopping by!

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