Yoyogi park was pumping on Tuesday under a blazing sun and a seemingly collective yearning to recreate by all. Catch bloke joined the masses and performed his own unique blend of techno dance and portraiture, he had a massive crowd and all were appreciative of his artistic shtick.
As they say in real estate, location is everything..
Text addendum from guest IRYB Blogger, Kurt Shirt:
I see the couple with the matching outfits every weekend in Yoyogi Park. I don’t mean that they have one pair of outfits that match, but rather what seems to be an entire wardrobe of his-and-hers clothing that coordinate material, color and design. Last weekend he was wearing an ivory button-down shirt with khaki trousers and a denim jacket. She mirrored him with an ivory blouse, khaki skirt and denim vest. They must be close to 60.
They were walking past the patch of grass where I was sitting with my friends, near the big fountain in the middle of the park. The one that attracts the drum circle crowd. We sat there drinking beer, playing guitars and singing old Lemonheads and Teenage Fanclub songs, trying to drown out the monotonous thumping. Guess we can’t really complain. The drummers are there in the same place every weekend. If we don’t like it we can move to another place, maybe near the hacky-sackers, or the frisbee tossers, or the meditaters, or the skateboarders, or the rockabilly dancers. They all have their designated areas in the park, which they diligently man on Saturdays, Sundays and public holidays.
A crowd had gathered in between us and the drum circle to watch some kind of performer. A wiry guy with unkempt hair was dancing around and periodically daubing black paint on a canvas set up on an easel. He had a cardboard box on a strap around his neck, designed to look like an 80s style boombox and apparently housing a real boombox from which techno music was blaring as loud as it could go (I guess he didn’t want to get paint on it). This was something new and exciting. I’d never seen anyone attempt to dance and paint at the same time. My friends and I pressed closer into the crowd to watch. “Aw, it’s not the ‘real’ guy,” one said. “The real guy actually paints peoples’ portraits while he dances. This must be his apprentice.” Hot off the press but already spawning imitators.
Of course the Japanese need to belong is the stuff of legend. No matter how niche your interest you can always find your group, or create one that others will join to make you feel less alone in the world. Meanwhile, foreigners here are often praised/despised for their individuality. Back home all my friends were getting married, having babies, buying houses, and I didn’t want to be a part of that scene. That was the reason I came here in the first place, to do my own thing.
My friends and I went back to our patch of grass to bash out our power-pop songs.