odaiba american festival japan

An American festival in Tokyo

Odaiba, which I’ve posted on before, held an “American Festival”. I needed to know. If Japan is sushi, samurai, manga in the US, what is America in Japan? Oh, you don’t want to know.

I was going to take photos but I knew I’d be taking them to jab and jeer.

I will briefly outline the people and venue: Every worker was dressed in denim shirts AND jeans with HUGE cowboy hats. Over that women wore white homestead aprons and/or Aunt Jemima-esq headscarves. The shops were cooking up huge steaks on BBQ’s and the Budweiser was everywhere. On either side of the audience/tables were food stalls with steaks, the Japanese interpretation of pulled pork (if you think you’ve been eating Teriyaki chicken and sushi where you are, I’ve got a surprise for you), and SPAM. Oh, and used clothing bins, boxed cake mixes, and toy guns because that’s America folks, used clothes and guns. Yes, sir.

Picture it: The average Japanese person is about 170 – 175 cm and narrow waisted. Their Texas belt buckles were like shields and their poor little heads peaking out from those hats — oh, lord. No. No photographs — for their sake — save the stage, which was playing an unusual bossa nova/jazz with Japanese lyrics because that’s how we roll in the states.

odaiba american festival japan

Odaiba is popular and crowded all the time. The rest of Odaiba was packed with people; however . . . .

odaiba american festival japan

I felt so bad them. The people in the shops were doing the best to bring in customers but….  I, too, abandoned them and took a walk around some of my favorite places. I came back a few times but I never saw it any more crowded twenty people in that HUGE venue.

odaiba american festival japanYup. There’s one here, too. Lady Liberty’s sister. I suspect that’s why they chose Odaiba for the American Festival.

fuji tv building odaiba

I love this building. It’s the Fuji TV building. With a little tilt shift I can do this now.

fuji tv building odaiba

And a day in Odaiba without a sculpture of a bird flying overhead and a beautiful sunset is incomplete.

fuji tv building odaiba sculpture

fuji tv building odaiba sculpture sunset

10 Comments on “An American festival in Tokyo

  1. Enjoyed this through your narrative lens. Snickering and sadly, embarrassed at the same time. Some things have obviously not changed. Like the shot of the Fuji TV Building. What, however, is a tilt shift?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Tilt shift is a specific kind of distortion where you adjust the light coming into the lens so it doesn’t fit perfectly on the image sensor. It’s often used to change converging lines to parallel (like in architectural photography), or for fun effects like I did by making the lines bend.

      It’s fun!


  2. How well I remember when Oz went through its insane craze for everything American. It was a time of total cultural cringe, and quite appalling. Thank all the gods it’s long in the past: we can see that our own offerings and theirs don’t need to compete.

    Liked by 1 person

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