Sunday, July 15, 2007

After the storm

Snippets from the past 24 hours:
This morning after the storm, blue skies like I haven't seen in a couple of weeks and a strong wind all day. The typhoon is heading away from Tokyo over chiba. 70 people were injured in some way during its passage up the mainland.

I arrived back late last night after a night out with studio clients and my cameraman. The main guest was president of a printing company. Over 30 years in the commercial printing business in Tokyo and Nagoya. He said he'd like to see some of my photographs. ”まだまだだねって” (not quite there yet), he said after leafing very expertly few the prints I had on me at the time. Not enough impact for a commercial audience. The prints were from the light and dark series, and I have to agree they might not sell you a house or make you want to buy insurance.

We talked of this and that. His memories from the economic bubble era when the printing firm could charge outrageous mark-ups, and push the client to order more, and of the older techniques for printing photographs and laying out pages that is all done on computer now. He told me a joke to illustrate one point of the Japanese character:

Three men, one from America, one from Germany and one from Japan are standing outside of a burning building. There is a young child on the second floor, screaming for help.

The American says "I'll go, because it's heroic".

The German says "I'll go because it's my duty".

The Japanese man says "Let's all go together".

The point here being that in Japan, people prefer to follow the crowd/do things together.
I had one more person to add to the joke.

The Englishman says "After you, old chap".

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