I feel obliged to note the random trifecta of events I managed to attend this weekend:
(1) Improv Workshop
I attended the Tokyo Comedy Store's inaugural Student Improv Jam-alama, a 5-hour improv session at Our Space led by veteran Tokyo improv-meister Chris Wells. Rather than just mess around as usual, I decided to approach each piece with the attitude that it actually counted, and I managed to only suck about 50% of the time—a new record! Having a chance to try improv to music was a huge plus, and I even failed to frighten off the audience during "actor's nightmare".
More pics on Facebook.
(2) Manda-la 2
No, this is not just an anagram of Jam-alama: this is the bar where Icon Girl Pistols, Jimmy Binks and the Shakehorns, and the Keep Togethers played on Saturday night. The Keep Togethers are fronted by Linden Wint, my dead wife from Of Mice and Men, and one of my best and oldest friends in Tokyo. As she is on her way to Hong Kong in the near future, this was the Keep Togethers' semi-final gig.
More picks on Flickr.
The Children's Day festival I attended in Rikuzen-takata last month was sponsored by various kickboxing groups in Iwate and Miyagi Prefectures. For whatever reason, one of the kickboxers took a liking to me and insisted on inviting me to his next event in Tokyo.
It turns out Yuji is the Martial Arts Japan Kick Boxing Association Flyweight Champion—or rather, he was until he lost by TKO in the second round of his fight on Sunday. Apparently, when a massive gash opens up in your head, they won't let you keep fighting. Up to that point, he'd been winning.
The event's opening fight was between eight-year-olds, who flew at one another with fists and feet somehow attacking simultaneously. I recognized quite a few of the adult boxers from the Rikuzen-takata event, though I'd only hitherto seen them mucking about on stilts or playing games with children (see pics).
I just enjoy the unlikeliness of these three events being attended by the same person...