Saturday, December 30, 2006

Postcard Delight: New Year's edition

Japanese postcardTo end my 2006 post card frenzy, here are two New Year cards for ya.

On the first card, a violin player with the head of a wild pig, playing a song celebrating the New Year. In this case, that was probably 1911 (or maybe 1923?), as that is the year of the pig on the Chinese Zodiac. The sender of the card recommends the recipient—another Nakamura-san who was in a Yokosuka hospital at the point of writing—to listen to the pig's violin play in order to cheer up her day.

Japanese postcardThe second card is my all time favorite: a beautiful New Year's card I found in a tiny store in Yufuin, Kyūshū. The owner of the store told me he was born in the year the card was posted, which seems to be Taishō 8 (1920)—or is it Shōwa 8 (1934)? Anyway, I hope you enjoy its elegant Art Deco design!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Postcard Delight: part 6

Japanese postcard This card, which depicts a lady sitting in front of a tree, is one of my favorites. I'm not really sure what the author's autograph stands for (か-something?), but the date is quite clear: 1912. Also be sure to check out the backside of the card. The addressee is a certain Nakamura Yoneko, living in Yokosuka. (Note: one of the previously posted cards also had a Yokosuka link.) The ink on the stamp reads 29.11.1, which is probably November 29 of Taishō 1 (= 1912).

Friday, December 22, 2006

Postcard Delight: part 5

Japanese postcard A long overdue update to my Postcard Delight series. This week's card depicts 掘部弥兵衛源金丸 (anybody an idea how to pronounce this?). Just as was the case with the previous card, I have no clear idea about when this one was made. Info is welcome.

Update: Some insights from the gf... Apparently, the rest of the text says 江戸留守居役 三百石 行年七十八才, which means he was a daimyō's "Edo representative," owned quite a bit of rice-producing land, and died at the age of 78. The writing on his clothes also mentions 赤穂遺臣 (akō ishin), which is a reference to the Akō vendetta.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

haikuplanet logo The first Jonkenpon project is out: it's called Haikuplanet and I love it. You can read, rate and comment on haiku or create one yourself. No tagging, but 4 seasonal categories + search. Tamjpn's Wii haiku is my current favorite!

Monday, December 04, 2006

Postcard Delight: part 4

Japanese postcard This week's post card is very different from the previous ones: no framed photographs this time, but pure illustration. No idea when this one was made though — the Leonard A. Lauder collection book I previously mentioned doesn't contain any similar designs.

The person featured is 大石内藏之助藤原良雄 (as written on the card). That's Ōishi Yoshio, also known as Ōishi Kuranosuke. Wikipedia has more info (JP).