Archive | May, 2011

Where and When [Video]

30 May

Where and When (For Japan) from Robert Dean Glencröss on Vimeo.

Whenever you feel lost
Whenever you feel tossed around
Whenever you feel thrown
Whenever you feel blown away

Whenever you are down
Whenever you renounce your ways
Whenever you look back
Whenever you feel black and blue

I will come to you
With my heart on my sleeves
And down on my knees
I’ll embrace what you need

Whenever you stand up
Whenever you need a parade
Whenever you want songs
Whenever you just want to sing

Wherever you call home
Wherever on this globe you stay
Wherever you are safe
Wherever you are brave today

I will come to you
I will always believe
In you and your dreams
When you say you’re in need

I will come to you
With my heart on my sleeves
And down on my knees
I’ll embrace what you need

Submitted by: Robert Dean Glencröss

3/11 [Essay]

30 May


The next day:

So what happened was I was on my way to work, just finishing up getting ready, when I felt a small earthquake.  It seemed to go on for longer than usual while getting stronger at the same time.  I’m very sensitive to earthquakes, and I’m the first to take cover (much to the amusement of my coworkers).  I ran to the entryway in our home, opened the door and knelt down. When I realized I wasn’t the only one doing this, I began to panic.  I ran down to the first floor of our building as the earthquake intensified.  I was also in the Loma Prieta earthquake of ’89,  which had more of a jarring feel, but this earthquake was like being stuck on a suspension bridge.  I could see outside that the power lines were swaying and everything seemed to blur.  The earthquake did not want to let up, and the aftershocks seemed to be an extension of it.  We still had power, including the Internet, but phone lines were down.  I couldn’t contact my fiance for a while, which was frightening.  My neighbors all banded together and found that we were in the safest place possible.  Thank goodness for things like Twitter, Facebook, and email.  I was able to keep in contact and informed of the situation.  I was able to not only speak to my family, but I also got to see them on Skype.  It was very reassuring! Still, my mind is a mess. I can’t think straight. To keep my mind off the aftershocks, I started pooling our emergency kits and supplies. I honestly didn’t expect to use them, but it was busy work and needed to be done.

As for my fiancee, he was at work at the time.  The aftershocks became too much and they evacuated his building to a local park in Shibuya.  He saw glass that had fallen off of buildings onto the sidewalk, and there were huge crowds of people that were stuck.  The trains had stopped, the station even closed and weren’t letting people stay there.  He went to a local electronics store where there were loads of people crowded around the TVs to get their news and charge their phones.  Some were simply out shopping as usual.  The izakaya (bars) were still open, as well as many restaurants.  Later in the evening, it was revealed that the JR Lines would not resume that day.  He decided to walk home.  Under normal circumstances, this would have taken an hour and a half or maybe two hours.  But it took him about three and a half hours to get home as the sidewalks were packed with people. What a relief it was when he walked through that door and said, “ただいま!” (“I’m home!”)

The aftershocks continue.  Of course, they’re much lighter and more infrequent compared to yesterday.  Even as I’m writing this, we just had an aftershock that was enough to spook me into hiding!

Now things are much calmer.  Yesterday was very scary and stressful.  But everyone remained calm.  Even on the news, I didn’t see anyone who was hysterical.  My neighbors and I all stuck together.  It was my first time meeting some of them; they’re lovely.  We shared advice and information, it was very reassuring.  One thing I’m very impressed with is the part social media has played.  There was such a strong community with support, encouragement and the very latest information.  It was also a quick and easy way to account for many people at once.  Google even set up a system for checking in.  Thank goodness we had Internet!

We are very lucky.  Everyone is concerned about the people who were very seriously affected up north.

And Then:

It’s been about two days since the quake, and we are working on getting back to our daily routines the best we can.  But what’s happened in the north is very shocking and our thoughts are with them.  We are keeping an eye on the nuclear reactor situations, but it does not appear that we are in any danger here in Tokyo at this time.

Going shopping at the grocery store today, we stocked up on necessities and extra food.  The stores were busier than normal, but not completely packed, and the shelves were fairly well stocked.  There wasn’t much besides bread that they were sold out of.  Bottled water was still available. We went in the afternoon and again in the evening.  I would venture to say that it felt like business as usual.

We’re trying to conserve energy, but we do have power, gas, and water.  We were informed that they will “ration” power-outages in three-hour sessions.  However, because we live in the busy downtown area, we’re not going to be in the scheduled groups. Still, we may have power-outages anyway.  We were also told that once the power goes, we may be without water during that time as well.  We’ve filled our bathtubs with water just in case.  We’ve stocked up on food and essentials.  We are prepared to evacuate, although we do not expect to.  It’s just a precaution.  In Ikebukuro, Tokyo today, the scene was such that one wouldn’t know if it were taking place today or last week.  Most of the stores and train lines are open again, but many businesses remain closed or closed early. Even the jumbotrons in Shibuya and Shinjuku have been turned off to save energy.

We had tentative plans to go to Sendai over Golden Week. Perhaps there will be something we can do to help with relief efforts. Miyagi is supposed to house one of the top three greatest landscapes in Japan.


The situation in Tokyo today the scheduled power-outages began, but most of them weren’t applicable to most of the downtown districts in Tokyo.  We are all conserving power.  Convenience stores, shops, and supermarkets are lowering their lights, closing early and doing everything possible to conserve electricity.  In fact, we did such a good job of it that some of the rationed power-outages were canceled.  However, this caused a lot of confusion.  It was comfortable temperature today, so it was easy to go without heat.

The trains today were busier than I have ever seen them.  Most of the lines have delays and have suspended operations between certain stations.  This morning, two trains came that I couldn’t fit on.  Usually, by that time, the trains are clear enough to have some elbow room.  I waited for the third train and got on, but by then I was a half hour late.  The government had actually encouraged people to stay home today, work shorter hours, come in later, or telecommute.  My fiancee and I were able to end our workdays early.

Electronics stores today quickly sold out of battery-powered cellphone chargers.

But the general vibe remains calm and cooperative.  There is no panic over the situation with the nuclear reactors.  Although we are inconvenienced, we’re doing well.

Our hearts are heavy; they’re with the families of the dead and missing. I remember visiting Fukushima a couple years ago. I remember thinking how cold it was, but everyone in the shops and restaurants were so warm and inviting. I enjoyed the best bowl of ramen I’ve ever had while I was up there. I read that the people of that town have all evacuated. I don’t know if the tsunami damaged the town. I’m afraid for those nice people.

Submitted by: Jenny Silver

Support the NOLA Japan Quake Fund

30 May

It could be said that if it weren’t for Koizumi Yakumo, Japan and New Orleans would have no relationship at all. If you are even passing familiar with the modern cultural history of Japan or New Orleans, you know Yakumo-san better by his given name, Patrick Lafcadio Hearn. Through his evocative writings, Hearn presented the world with rich, colorful, and lasting images of both New Orleans, where he lived for ten years, and Japan, which became his adopted country after he took up residence in Matsue, Shimane Prefecture.

New Orleans and Matsue are now sister cities, a relationship forged out of Hearn’s history in both places, and cemented when charities in Japan donated roughly $44 million to New Orleans disaster relief and recovery efforts following Hurricane Katrina in 2005. In order to give back what was so richly given, a coalition of Japan-related organizations in New Orleans has established the NOLA Japan Quake Fund to raise money for relief following the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

The Quakebook Team urges you to support the excellent work the NOLA Japan Quake Fund is doing to bring aid and comfort to survivors of the Japan disaster. And because part of the disaster in Japan is due to the meltdown of the nuclear reactors in Fukushima and the resulting radiation leaks, the need for relief funding to rebuild and relocate survivors is more urgent and is likely to be rather prolonged. Reestablishing normal life in the Fukushima area after the quake and tsunami may have been possible after months or a couple of short years. But the nuclear disaster is going to stretch that timeline past what most experts can currently predict.

So, please, join the creators and supporters of Quakebook and do what you can to aid the NOLA Japan Quake Fund. So far, the fund has raised over $183 thousand for the cause, but could really use so much more.

To donate directly, you can go to The NOLA Japan Quake Fund. In addition, you can contribute by buying marvelous art posters from Tsunami of Support. The purchase of these posters supports the Quake Fund. Tsunami of Support is a project of Unfold Media, a New Orleans-based art gallery committed to promoting design and art for positive social change.

11.03.2011 Pray for Japan [Art]

29 May

People are not Numbers #prayforjapan #iphoneography

Submitted by: Daniele Martire
Originally posted here.

Scorie [Art]

29 May

Scoria n.5 #prayforjapan #iphoneography #nuclear

Scoria n.6 #prayforjapan #iphoneography

Submitted by: Daniele Martire
Originally posted by here

Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami [Photos]

28 May

Submitted by: Damon Coulter, Photojournalist

Digital Quakebook goes free; buy print copy in bookstores!

28 May

Here’s the big news. We’re going free. That is, 2:46 – Aftershocks: Stories from the Japan Earthquake will be downloadable from Amazon (US, UK, DE) and (as it has been all along) at Sony for free.

Yep. To raise more funds, Quakebook is going free. WHAT? FREE? How can you raise more money by going free? Let me explain…

  1. Since its release two months ago, the Amazon digital book has sold over 3,000 copies.
  2. The digital book was downloaded for free just over 3,000 times. In 12 hours.

Wow. We doubled our audience in 12 hours, which had taken two months when priced at $9.99.

Here’s the plan:

  1. Thousands more will download the book for free.
  2. Some of them will donate cash to the Japan Red Cross.
  3. Many of them won’t (but would they have done anyway?)
  4. Suddenly the audience will be exponentially bigger.
  5. Even if a tiny proportion of those free downloaders decide they’d like a print copy of the book, we will be raising far more than by keeping a digital book priced at $9.99 which acts as a paywall against potential interested readers.

The print book is coming in two weeks.

In Japan, the bilingual Japanese/English paperback edition is coming out on June 14th, published by Goken, priced ¥1400.

In the United States and the United Kingdom, a hardback English book will be coming out priced at $20 (I’m not sure of the price in pounds). You will be able to order any of these from Amazon (for the bilingual copy, go to and click on the English language button and you can order from anywhere in the world).

But if you can, PLEASE go to your local bricks and mortar bookshop and order the book there.


If you order at your bookshop, they will stock it. If they have it on their shelves, others will see it and more people will buy it. More people buy it, more money goes to the survivors. And you want to help your local bookshop too, don’t you?

So, 1. Download the book! 2. In two weeks, order the print book from your local bookshop!

Got it? Carry on!

Clown in Tohoku [Video]

27 May

Submitted by: Douglas Wakimoto

Event: #Quakebook Live

25 May

Show your support for Japan by attending an eclectic evening of music, poetry and soul at Shibuya’s Pink Cow. Musicial performances by Nature Airline, Fumiya Sugimoto, Akiko Otao accompanied by Ai Yamazaki plus a very special #quakebook musical guest. Also hear poetry inspired by Japan and readings from #quakebook contributors.

The 1000 yen entry fee includes a light buffet courtesy of The Pink Cow. In addition to the entry fee we encourage you to make a donation to the Japanese Red Cross either at the door or through the purchase of #quakebook.

Come, help Japan and be inspired.

When: May 27th, 19:00 – 22:00
Where: The Pink Cow, Shibuya:
Cost: 1000 yen

Our Man, Roberto De Vido, Kevin Carroll and Yuko Kato on CNN International

18 May


From his home in Abiko, Our Man spoke live to CNN International mere hours ago on 17 May. He speaks about the book, and about his personal experience as the earthquake hit Abiko on 11 March. Quakebook team members Roberto De Vido and Kevin Carroll, as well as contributor Yuko Kato, are also featured at the beginning of the CNN video report: