Knee High Media

Boat and biking on Oshima with Paper Sky

伊豆の大島は東京の品川区だと知っていますか。浜松町から船で8時間かかりました。Paper Sky Bicycle Club のツール・ド・オオシマはとても楽しかったです。黒溶岩の砂漠での日の出も優しい自転車おたくたちもローカル料理もすばらしかった。Paper Sky は素敵な雑誌で、ニーハイメディアという出版社は最近自転車、山のハイキング、料理本のグループを打ち上げました。実際に人を集めるのはすごいと思います。

DId you know that Oshima island, off the coast of Izu, is part of Shinagawa ward? From the pier near Hamamatsucho, it’s an eight hour overnight ride on a slow and rather large boat. I recently went with Paper Sky’s Bicycle Club.

Highlights included watching the sun rise at black lava rock “desert” atop the volcano, fun and fashionable cyclists in their twenties, thirties, and forties, the slow over-night boat ride, two onsens, a small port made from a volcanic crater. We saw the end of the camellia season, the blooming of Oshima cherry trees, and ate ashitaba leaf vegetable. Dai dai cocktails cmobined local citrus with booze.

I am now even more impressed with Paper Sky, which is a travel magazine and also the hub of mountain climbing, food, book, and bicycle clubs. My fellow travelers were an interesting mix of bicycle sellers, magazine editors, serious and hobby cyclists, photographers, and creative types. I was surprised that the rental bikes were all Bruno bikes, which have small tires, great colors, and are excellent for city biking and mid-range touring.

With its real world events and groups, Paper Sky’s publisher, Knee High Media, is clearly thinking about a new type of publishing beyond paper, the web, and smart phones.

My Japanese TV debut on Plants+ Club Live

Plants+ という番組に参加しました。初めてのテレビ出演! UStreamで見れます。ルークさん、せいこさん、しんごさん、Plant+のみなさん、ありがとうございます!

My first live Japanese television program, on Plants+ Club Live on Ustream. Thanks Luke, Seiko, Shingo & everyone!

Lucas from Knee High Media (makers of Paper Sky and Mammoth magazines and the Plants+ website) invited me to their monthly Plants+ Club Live which is Ustreamed. In Japanese broadcast tradition, I was one member of a large panel of eight, including hosts Ito Seiko and Yagyu Shingo.

I can’t seem to embed the video on this blog. You can see the 30 minute show online at http://www.plantsplus.jp/video/plants-club-live-vol-14

This is the 14th episode, and I was impressed by it being simultaneously DIY and very well organized. A quick stage was set up, two professional photographers set up camera, lighting, and computers. And there were at least ten more people “backstage.” Lucas introduced the youngest blogger on the Plants+ network, who is a 7 year old in Kobe.

I struggled a bit with the live and conversational quality of the show in Japanese, but I did my best to introduce Tokyo Green Space. The hosts were super-animated, and we shared on-air some persimmons from the publisher’s back yard in Shibuya.

Other guests included the founder of Green Sticks, which makes seed strips in the shape of match boxes, writer and photographer Ashikara Yoko, and talented mandolin player Inoue Taro.