Nekobukuro Kitty Kats

There have actually been some very disturbing things happening here in Japan land (not to me personally, but at the political/civil liberties level) that have put me in a severely depressed mood recently and are making me seriously – like, seriously – think about leaving next year, or possibly sooner. Shit, to put it nicely, is about to get a lot more oppressive is you’re unfortunate enough to have the wrong skin colour and you live in Japan.

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I’ll write more about this in a depressing, angsty, emo-rambling poast sometime next week, which I’m sure must just make you want to run back and check this blog! *laughs* So to counteract what will inevitably be a depressing indulgence in moaning self-pity and righteous indignation at blatant government-sponsored racial profiling, I have decided to devote today’s entry to super cute and cuddly kitty kats!.

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I went with the lovely Kazumi to Nekobukuro in Tokyo a few weeks ago and took lots of pictures of cuddly spoiled furry felines. Now I am a panda person, of course, and I never used to get why people love taking pictures of cats so much, but after a few shots I realised that it’s because cats are incredibly photogenic. Lucky bastards. I never come out well in pictures. And these cats just lay there half asleep and still look a thousand times better and cuter on film than I do on my best day. *laughs* Awww! Here kittah kittah kittah!

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More photos of kitty kats after the jump.

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A busy intersection in Ikebukuro…

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This guy was not the most photogenic, but he was my favourite…

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….he was so grumpy! I love it!!

As a final aside, if you enjoyed these pictures, then head over to Tien Mao’s blog to see how kitty kat photography is really done, with loving ultra-sharp shots of his beloved Mortimer, who might give the denizens of Nekobukuro a run for the award of “World’s Most Pampered Cat.”

That’s it for today. Hope you’re all enjoying beautiful autumn weather wherever you are, except for my kiwi and aussie readers, for whom it is currently late spring, early summer. Oh, and Sabine, if you want, we can go to Nekobukuro when you come visit Tokyo next month!

Now listening to: RSP – Lifetime Respect (女偏)” [female version]

I don’t know much about this group “RSP”, but I do know that this is a female remake of the original song “Lifetime Respect” by the Japanese reggae artist (don’t ask) Miki Dozan. Dozan’s version is a lot more “reggae” sounding, while this remake kind of devolves into a more j-pop-py sound. Not that that’s bad or anything, but it’s interesting to see the two approaches to it.

If you want to see the original version, you can check it out over on youtube.

14 Reactions

  1. michaelpanda

    Thanks! I took most of those shots with the $70 Canon ES 50mm f/1.8 II (aka the “fantastic plastic”) set to around f/2.2 or so. Not bad for a (super) cheapie lens – I only wish I had money for a better one!
    (but isn’t that always the case? *laughs*)

  2. Veronica

    I’m so sorry, I know I owe you a hugely long email. I suck. I will make up for it though.
    I will keep checking back for the upcoming info on your current feeling. Very curious as to what’s going on…

  3. Lorelei

    What the *beep* is going on over there? I guess I’ve been missing out on news from Japan lately, jetting back and forth between Berlin and Styria, land of Arnold, all the time.
    But man, I would love to visit Nekobukuro! Nice pictures – you’re right, the grumpy guy is the best.

  4. Buffy

    Good Grief those photos are fabulous. I’m sure I’ve asked you this before…but what camera does the Panda use?

  5. adele

    Great pictures! Love the third kitty shot. I might need to pay a visit to this place, seeing as I can’t have a cat lest my dad decides never to visit me. Oh wait… ^^ I kid.
    I heard about the fingerprinting policy that’s going into effect in Japan, but I imagine you’re referring to other, more serious issues as well. Now I’m curious, not to mention a little concerned. Do you think the new policies will have heavy implications for visitors to Japan as well? I’m considering holidaying there for a bit next summer.

  6. MatchaMonkey

    I wish there were a place in NYC where I could pay to play with cats…though they’d probably let me do it for free at the animal shelter…

  7. SabineM

    once again, Panda Man, you have outdone yourself with the photography! Amazing shots.
    I think this concept of a Cat PLAY WITH ME store is amazing!
    I would die in a place like that as I am allergic to cats. Though I find them adorable, their dander get my sinuses go crazy! ;)
    And I bet you if a cat could think Like us, you would put one of their photos in front of them and they would think “DAMN it My eyes look all squinty, and my tail looks long and fat, and my hair could be shinier, why do I alway look so bad in photos!?” I always thought YOU looked good in pictures! Get my point! ;-)
    I am going to search online what you are talking about this political changes in Japan. I am looking forward to reading more about it on your blog. so don’t take too long…
    In one month from today, you can tell me all about it face to face! ;-) ok now I am writing a novel!

  8. Shay

    I’ll definetly read when you elaborate on what you said in the first graph. I’ve noticed a few not-so-good trends in the news lately myself (and I’m an outsider looking in). So plz share :)
    In other news, thanks for the cute kitty pics :P haha I feel happy :) <– smiling

  9. gidgetbananas

    Al Qaida — the all-purpose, all-nation excuse for violating the civil rights of persons who are obviously not terrorists.
    On a lighter note — the cat on the ledge looks just like my kitty Frankie Ming who’s giving me some of that rear-end attitude even as I type . . .

  10. Monique

    I want to go there!
    Nice photos, grumpy cat is definitely the best!! :)
    Is there a limit to how many people they let in there at a time?