Monkeys, Maseratis, and Trans-Continental Crisis Management

Soaking in a steamy hot-spring, monkey-filled or otherwise, in the mountains of snowy Hokkaido would be pretty baller right now. Unfortunately, although I do live, for better and for worse, in the snow-encrusted northern mountains, where the winter is 6 months too long and about 30 degrees too cold, we don’t have any of those perks that make you think, this really isn’t so bad.

The really bad part is that, not only do you end up suffering from acute February-Blues, but come March (assuming you survive until then), you feel foolishly hopeful that the “end” is in sight. And then the blizzards set in, and you are faced with the bleak onset of nihilism, that dark moment of enlightenment, when you understand that it will never end. It is winter, forever.

That is why I, lest my roommates should come home one day to find me buried out under the back deck, do my best to escape to some marginally warmer and redeemingly more interesting part of the world. Thus, tomorrow afternoon I will be catching a flight out to Seattle, WA, to spend some time visiting friends, thawing out, and taking a break from 8′ snow-banks and frostbite.

It may not be Okinawa, but 45 degrees and rain sounds like the Virgin Islands compared to playing Ice-Climbers in real life. It sounds like a cool city, as well, and given that they were apparently the first to successfully impale a UFO, must be forward-thinking and strategic people with a tendency to accept foreign cultures.

After an uninspired couple of months, I’m looking forward to taking a bit of a vacation from reality while I’m out west, so a lot of my projects will be put on hold until I return in early April, while I party my way through my quarter-life-crisis in the hopes of returning refreshed, restored, and rejuvenated.

Ironically, in an attempt to not let Secret Garden become so inactive that it gets evicted from the internet or something, things will probably be more frequently updated while I’m away than they have been while I’ve been lazing around picking out fancy sports cars I can’t afford and don’t want, but that my trophy wife thinks I need in order to express the suffering that comes with old age and— what I mean to say is that posts will be appearing on SG every Saturday at 7:07 AM EST. Comments, emails, and @mentions will be moderated and responded to when I return in April, so if you don’t see your comment up right away, fear not- I did not send it to the spam folder. Yet.

Incidentally, the day that I get back to the east coast will also mark my 2nd anniversary on WordPress. I’ll admit, the reason I haven’t been posting lately has less to do with picking out Maseratis, and more to do with the fact that I feel like I’m not able to properly express a lot of what I think and perceive about Visual Kei on Secret Garden with things the way they are.  I’ve been turning over a lot of ideas in my head for ways to expand and change things, so we’ll see what happens.

Although I’ve enjoyed working on Secret Garden with things like this for the past few years, I think I expressed in past posts that I’m plagued by a chronic obsession with self-improvement and development, and I feel like I can always be doing better and working to improve things. This will be my mission when I return to the east coast. But in the meantime, I would like to expand a little right now and open a poll to Visualists to ask you, for the first time, what brings you to Secret Garden for the 1st, or the however-many-returns visit. Leave a vote, and if you have any feedback, insights, thoughts, suggestions, or remarks, comment below.


What do you think?


2 responses to “Monkeys, Maseratis, and Trans-Continental Crisis Management

  1. I hope you have a great vacation. I know what it feels like to live somewhere where it feels like winter goes on forever and a day.

    As far as why I was attracted to this blog… Too may reasons to ever list. SG pretty much introduced me to Visual Kei, J-Rock, and Visual lifestyle as a whole.
    I found your blog just under a year ago, having found an old copy of Gothic & Lolita Bible at the local library. (I love my library…) Flipping through it, I inevitably came across the mandatory Mana-Sama photoshoot. I fell in love with gothic and loli fashion then and there, and wanted to know more. At that time, I had no idea what Visual Kei was. Thankfully, a few days later when I looked for more pictures on the web, I stumbled onto an article you had written on cosplaying Mana. I marked the page, liking how well-written the article was, and it didn’t take much time for me to check out your more recent posts. I then wanted to know more about the musical side of this beautiful fashion, so I looked up Malice Mizer on a whim. I liked them, so I went back to your blog to see what more you had to say about music. At the time, you had just posted about raunchiness running rampant in J-Rock PVs, and you of course included all those videos… So of course I watched them all. On the first listen, I think I liked VAMPS’ Devil Side best, followed closely by SCREW’s Gather Roses. (By the way – I blame you for my fanservice addiction.) Sadly, I was not so impressed with B-T’s early performance of Sexual XXXX!!! at the time, and didn’t think to look for more of BUCK-TICK’s music until a month or so later. (Given that they’re now my favourite band, I kick myself for not looking them up sooner.) After that, I started looking up more and more bands that you listed – The GazettE, MIYAVI, D’espairsRay… I also blame you for infecting me with your Visualist Dementia. Not that I would ever have you cure it, never that!
    I now listen to Visual Kei on a daily basis, and I can’t live without it. I consider myself a Visualist, thanks to you. I don’t know how I could ever thank you properly.
    Beyond that, the reason I keep coming back to this blog is “all of the above.” And sure I’ll run away to Japan with you, but you’d better be buying the plane tickets.

  2. Does the bike come in red? Red would be more badass, IMHO. White is Kamen Rider-ish, unless that’s what you are trying to achieve.

    I come here for the insights, though how they were presented has more weight. I believe I had mentioned before how I admire your gift of creating imagery with words and up to now, it still holds true. There is fluidity in your writing but your biggest strength is your knack for using metaphors. Your post about D’s latest single is one testament to this. I don’t agree with everything that’s on it :) (I actually hate that single and the titular track is the weakest in the album. Peace.) but the writing is brilliant. It was very – picturesque.

    The written word is obviously your friend and I wonder what else you two could accomplish beyond the realm of visual kei commentary. Then again, the reason why the partnership works is also the reason why this lil’ site of yours is steps above most: it’s passion driven. You relish being a “visualist” and that fact is very palpable in your writing.

    Anyway, have you read The Book Thief by Markus Zusak? You have the same writing style: holding words in your hands like the clouds then wringing them out like the rain.

    Enjoy your well deserved vacation!

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