Down and out…

Down and out…

At the end of last week I got the very nasty Norovirus and I have been down and out this weekend.   It is reaching an epidemic level in Japan this season.   It nearly killed me the first two days.   It is easy to see some it is so dangerous for young children and elderly who can die of organ fatigue while fighting this.    I  felt like I was kicked in the stomach a few hundred times.

If you have ever had food poisoning this is a very similar experience.    I have actually had both food poisoning and Norovirus in the past so I have good basis of comparison.  I haven’t felt so helpless is a very long time.  I am very lucky to have had my wife here to take care of me.

It typically passes in a couple of days and then you just need to rest and recover for a few more.  Yesterday I could barely sit up my stomach hurt so much.   I think I spent $100 on iTunes entertainment for myself while I  was in bed.     I was able to catch up on the lastest episodes of Burn Notice, Breaking Bad, Pawn Stars, Top Chef, The Good Wife, and Blue Bloods.   It is not very often I get a day where I simply lay and watch television.

Today I was able to use the down time to get productive.  Email can and does rule way too many of our lives.   We are all subscribed to too many mailings lists.  Some we signed up for because we wanted to and others we get signed up to.   I have been finding lately in my personal email that ‘junk mail’ was overtaking my inbox.  It not that it just becomes something that you need to delete.  Now that we all have iPhones and iPads all with the same accounts on them it actually worse to get mail you don’t really want as it distracts you more as it breaks your focus on whatever you are doing as you want to check your mail when the ‘ping’ tone goes off.   What you end up doing is deleting the mail vs. unsubscribing from it.    I spent the better part of this morning unsubscribing to a few hundred mailings lists.

I even went and set up IMAP on my ShootTokyo email.  Believe it or not I was running on ShootTokyo email on a POP client on my iPhone, iPad and Mac.  For those of you that doesn’t know what that means – it means I am stupid.  It means that went I delete the mail in one of those places it exists in the other so I spend a lot of time rereading mails.   I was just too lazy to stop and figure out how to set up IMAP.  It took me about 20 minutes to figure it out and change my 3 accounts.    It is a bit embarrassing that I used such a nonsensical approach for so long.

I can’t imagine how many hours these  two actions will save me in the next year.   So often we need to just get to it and make some changes that will save us so much time in the future.   I was also able give a few hours to cleaning up my Lightroom catalog.   I have been making a lot of progress on this.  Soon I will have a completely keyworded and clean Lightroom catalog.

Me in the mirror!

I always find it funny when people comment on my profile pictures on Google+  or Facebook and say it doesn’t make me look like a photographer.    How are photographers suppose to look?  I hate to disappoint but I take 90% of my photographs dressed like this…

Me in the mirror

I realized I haven’t posted any images of my new favorite sushi shop Pintokona (B2 Metro Hut, Roppongi Hills, 6-4-1 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo).   I eat here probably 3-4 days a week.  It is fast, cheap and super yummy!

Kaiten Sushi in Roppongi Hills

Kaiten Sushi in Roppongi Hills

Always start with the tamogo…

Kaiten Sushi in Roppongi Hills

Kaiten Sushi in Roppongi Hills

My Sushi Master rolling my Negitoromaki times 2!   I love this place…

Kaiten Sushi in Roppongi Hills

Google had a cool doodle for the Japan elections today…  No matter how long I live in this country I don’t think I will ever understand the politics of Japan.   I was confused, stunned, when I saw previous Prime Minster Abewas running again.   I was even more surprised when I learned he was the front runner.  I have so much to learn…

Google Doodle for Japanese Elections

The love the scenes you can see looking across onto train platforms…

Nakameguro Station

Nakameguro Station


Ebisu Station

Japanese Mailbox

I feel your pain…

Scratched Car

A very cool old BMW M3…



Hello Kitty

More photos of this crazy house in Jiyugaoka.

Speaking of cleaning up:  I am clearing out my inventory of ShootTokyo T-Shirts.   The remaining shirts are now just $1.99.   Grab them before they are gone…

Crazy House in Jiyugaoka

Crazy House in Jiyugaoka

Crazy House in Jiyugaoka

Crazy House in Jiyugaoka

Kenny's In Jiyugaoka

I like delicious coffee…

Bake Shop in Jiyugaoka

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  • Kurt

    I just signed up for your posts via email. I hate missing them!!

  • Mark Esguerra

    Great, fun shots in this post Dave. I’m sorry to hear you were ill, but at least you got some Breaking Bad in. And cool stuff being able to clean up your LR catalog too. I can’t bring myself to go digging through past photos to update keywords yet. He he.

  • M Y R O N E

    I want to ask your advice , being respectful of your choices , I would like to know your reasoning why you purchased the Ricoh Grd IV considering your had a X100 Fujifilm . Is there any features that are outstanding versus the X100. The X100 has a Aps-c Cmos sensor versus Ricoh’s 1.7 sensor . Does the Ricoh IV B&W mode have any stand out features versus the latter , or the does Ricoh manipulates its software for better quality imagery . Daido is very fond of the Ricoh compacts ,any influence or inspiration. Your opinion would be highly appreciated . thank you so much
    M Y R O N E

  • Dave

    Great. Enjoy Kurt!

  • Dave

    Mark – it is actually pretty rewarding. You end up clearing out some dead wood and end up finding a few gems you didn’t know about. I am also tagging things with starts for my 4s and 5s so you get a nice collection of your best.

  • Dave

    Myrone – I found the FujiFilm just a little bulky and found the continuos searching of the autofocus maddening at night time. I mostly shoot food or cameras with it and often in not the best light. I had a friend that uses the Ricoh and was very happy with it. I tried it and he was right. It was great.

  • Mark

    Dave, glad to hear you are feeling better! We’ll have to talk soon

  • Dave

    Thanks Mark…

  • Jonesy

    Hey Dave
    Glad the novovirus is headed out the door for you. From all of us who enjoy seeing you world through the lens thanks for the photos and what you do with Shoottokyo.
    On another note considering you are an old hat IT guy I was well let’s say surprised you were using pop on your site;-). Anyway thanks again for the site and photos.

  • Dave

    Thanks Jonesy. Not sure what I was doing using POP. Not my proudest movement…

  • Ricky

    hey Dave, glad to hear that u are getting better! Look forward to see more of your posting ~

  • Cliff

    Dave, great to hear you are better now. A stomach virus is something I would not wish on any one.

    Thank you for the clearance pricing on your shirts, I just picked up a few which I will be giving as gifts. Have a happy holidays!!

  • Thorsten Overgaard

    I think the stomach is the most painful of places. Good to hear you came over it. Heat should be the best (and almost only) remedy for stomach problems I have been told several times by doctors.

    I used to have POP as well, then fot IMAP so all devices are synced. These days I’m transferring all e-mails since 1995 (yes, I kept everything!) to one IMAP account so all my mails are in a one synced archive on all devices.
    And at the same time I am getting all documents on the computers synced via Dropbox so I can have multiple computer with the same content.

    Wonder if this is the time of year where one clean up and organize stuff?

    On Lightroom, remember to click the “Automatically write changes into XPM” under Lightroom > Catalog Settings > Metadata so that changes, keywords and all is written to the DNG file. If you don’t those changes is only in that specific LR catalog and if you loose that, you loose all changes to the DNG files.

    On dressing … Look how Henri Cartier Bresson dresaed. Always stylish :-)

  • Dave

    Thanks Thorsten. This is certainly the time I year I organize stuff. I am working very hard now with my IMAP and some approaches I am taking on my work inbox to keep my email completely under control. It is so easy to become all consuming. Good tip on Lightroom!

  • Jen Xi

    Glad you’re feeling better now, Dave. I had food poisoning several months back and I was barely out of bed unless I really had to.

    I’ve learnt to tag my photos when I import them into Lightroom. My catalogue was in a mess and it’s one of those things that I made myself sit down to organise.

    I use several emails for different purposes: work, professional, personal, photography etc). I forward all of them to one main account that I sync across my devices. It’s easier this way, though some of my friends commented that it’s more secure to compartmentalise rather than allow access to all accounts through one.

  • Thorsten Overgaard

    Interesting Jen Xi

    I am just these days transferring 17 years of e-mails onto one IMAP so I have access to all of them on all devices, and at the same time syncing all documents via Dropbox so all documents except photos are available on all devices.

    (Dropbox is not suitable for photos; it would take two days to upload one day of shooting to Dropbox with the current speed. In other words, it would never finish).

    On security I had an interesting talk some months ago with a fellow in Hong Kong. What he said about security was that the main concern was if the government could read your documents, and they basically can no matter what type of security you use. Hence his policy was not to have anything in digital form that was an actual secret.
    But the rest, e-mails, documents, contacts and all. You throw that around as if someone might snap it up anytime.

    And if you have to have private stuff in digital form, then on a USB or similar?

    As i is, most e-mails are saved for the use of intelligence agencies (at least in Denmark it is officially saved for one year, and I guess unofficially available for many more years)

    For my part I have so much data written and collected over so many years that it would overwhelm anybody :-) 20 GB of e-mails…

    Another thing that this fellow said was that he would not depend on one company like Apple or Google. So he would have his addresses sync’ed via Google but shown in the Address book on iPhone. But ready to change to Samsung if they did a better product.

    Dealing with all this is a very interesting thought process. And mainly when you throw in future technology, how to preserve YOUR data despite changes in platforms, mergers of platform suppliers, change in software standards together with the growth in hard drives, bandwidth and the possible change in countries and future wars and terrorism. How do you manage YOUR data so they stay yours and safe through all this, when somebody hacks Dropbox and Time Machine suffers from a fatal error. Did you prepare for that, or that you may need to change the format of your images or Word documents in your archive in a few years to still be able to read them?

    And at the same time, how can you work a lot, from anywhere, on any device (how can you have everything available, updated, ready and safely preserved whilst working anywhere on different computers).

  • Jen Xi

    Yes, Thorsten. I agree with the guy. I share information with the assumption that it’s being recorded or has the likelihood of being accessed by others.

    I’m locked into the Apple ecosystem. I used to rely solely on Google but I’ve since made Apple where I keep my contacts, calendar events etc. I have only myself to blame because I allowed myself to be locked into one system. I find it much easier to work in a system where I can access my data from the iPhone, iPad or Macbook and know that it information is updated. I’m placing my faith that Apple holds up in terms of security and being around for the long run. What I can do is to perform local backups and make sure that my hard disks are healthy and replaced before they fail.

    But I agree that it’s risky to depend on a particular system. I have several friends (not so tech savvy) who used Friendster to store photos and contacts. When Facebook stormed the world, Friendster decided to purge its data and reborn as a social gaming site. The only copies of their photos were gone. Of course, the more tech savvy amongst us would know NOT to rely on a web service for storage, but it serves as a reminder not to rely on someone else to keep your data.

    I previously mentioned about compartmentalising. Some of my friends use have long passwords for each different account, and less secure passwords for less important accounts (because they can only memorise that many long passwords). And some friends use password managers to help them to remember the passwords. I’m still not convinced that this is a right move. The companies claim that the data is encrypted etc but to me, it’s back to square one. You might have different passwords for different accounts but the master password to the manager unlocks all the other passwords. They take the trouble to compartmentalise and then leave them compartments vulnerable in a overall compartment.

    It’s a big problem because with modern technology, it is easy for a computer to guess a password through brute force. It reminds me of this:

    I’m still searching for a better way to manage passwords across multiple accounts.

    Dave, sorry for flooding the comments with all this talk of security. ^^;

  • Fabio D.

    That’s incredible! I’ve been in Japan in 2009 and I eated in Pintokona 2 times, and I take a portrait of the same sushi chef!

    I want to write about this on my blog, can I re-publish your picture? Obviously I will mention the source.

    I like very much your pictures… and I miss Japan….

    Thank you for sharing with us.

  • Dave

    Hi Fabio… Sure you can re-publish my photo. Thanks for mentioning and linking back to ShootTokyo. Small world!

  • Fabio D.

    I just posted about this…

    I don’t know if you can understand italian (probably not) but sure you can understand the links :-)

    Thanks again.


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