09 August 2011 ~ 10 Comments

Back to Life Blog Party #13: Kicking It With The Don

The party continues…


I went to this club in Yokohama, once, and was just having the time of my life. It was just one of those nights, where everything was on point. I was hanging out with some good friends, laughing, joking, just enjoying it. Beautiful women were walking up to me asking me where I was from, and telling me how handsome I was. Me, being the level-headed fellow that I am…I ate that sh*t up!! LOL.

I was dancing with like four girls at once, letting the hip-hop music and the atmosphere soak into my soul. While I was dancing, I accidentally stepped on this guy’s foot. He was tall, mysterious, African-American, just like me (minus the mysterious part). He gave me the mean mug, like he was going to do something. I immediately apologized, because the last thing I wanted on a perfect night like this, was a fight. Dude chilled out (thank goodness) and went on about his business; I kept partying with the hot Japanese ladies…and that was that…or, so I thought.

 The following day I’m back in Tsukuba, still feeling pretty geeked from the night I just had. Just before mid-day I headed out to do some much-needed grocery shopping. On the way to my bike I saw about ten masked dudes standing in apartment lobby. I kept walking and just minded my own business. As I walked towards the door, two of the men stopped me with their unusually burly arms. The others surrounded me and one said “Loco sends his regards.” I thought “Who the hell is Loco?!” Without any wasted words, one of them men smashed into my jaw with a left hook (“!!!”).

 The crushing pain from the blow instantly switched my mind into “kick-ass mode”…I went nuts: arm locks, throws, hurricane kicks (tatsu-maki-sen-pu-kyaku), dragon punches (shoryuken), any and everything in my arsenal. When I came to, from my frenzy, there 8 men lying on the ground, writhing and bleeding in front of me. One of the last two guys remaining literally pulled out a sword and came lunging at me. I sidestepped him, did a 180-degree turn and sent a fireball (hadouken) blazing into his back. I let the last one run and tell this “Loco” guy what the deal was.

 So I guess the craziest thing I’ve done in Japan is kill like 9 peop…


  (Loco pops Donald in the back of the head)

 “Stop daydreaming, yo!”


C’mon Don, pull yourself together! can’t you see it’s time for:

So, let’s set it off, shall we? Here’s your shot at DJ immortality…make it count!

1-What’s the most Loco thing that I’ve done in Japan? (The Real One)

 I have been a martial arts practitioner for as long as I can remember. I was actually teaching karate in the U.S. for about four years or so. Taking karate here in Japan has always a dream of mine and I decided to take Kyokushin Karate as an intro to the Japanese martial arts scene. I enjoyed how hard these guys would train and was just happy to be a part of all of it.

 One day, at the end of class the Shihan (a Japanese term meaning senior instructor) says that they’re going to do some extra training for any students that want to stay late. For those wanting to stay, he said that we could change into t-shirts. I quickly agreed, threw on my Superman shirt (that’s nice and humble) and came back out to the floor.

 I notice that of the fifteen students that came to class that night, I’m the only one that returned. “Heh, heh…looks like I get a private lesson all to myself…losers!” I thought to myself with a smug grin on my face.

 My grin flattened as the sliding door opened and a small crew of black belts started coming in. I was a little nervous at first, but I didn’t lose faith “I was a black belt back home…how bad could this possibly be?” Initially it was okay. The conditioning work was hard, but I could do it. However, things changed a bit when we got to the sparring part of things.

This was my first time really sparring with guys whose bread and butter is full contact fighting. I fought with this one black belt in particular who was fast as hell, with weird footwork to match. I did the best I could. I tried to use one of my fancy stop kicks and just touched him in the stomach with it (to keep things friendly). After doing it, the Shihan said something to the black belt in Japanese that I couldn’t quite understand (I’m guessing it must have been like “Knock his punk ass out.” or something along those line). Sure enough this guy throws a beautiful roundhouse kick that hits the lower-left edge of my jaw. I didn’t go down (my body wanted to), but I think I saw Jesus after that kick.

 “Donaldo-san, daijobu?” the Shihan said. A calm “Unnh” was all I could manage to get out. I was calm on the outside, but inside I was thinking “OOOOOOUUUCHH…YOU SON OF A B*TCH!! THAT REALLY HURT!!” I had to pause for a while to get the stars to disappear.

 It was definitely a learning experience. I think the lesson I learned is “If you’re going to spar with full-contact fighters for the first time…bring a taser.”

2-Why Do You Blog About Japan?

Initially I started blogging because I just had so much in my head that I wanted to get out. There are friends and family back home who, because of circumstances, can’t come to visit me. I realize that nothing beats experiencing something first hand, but a blog is a great way to at least give family and friends a glimpse of what Japan is like.

 I also blog  to catalog my own experiences here: it’s like home videos, a diary, and a photo album all wrapped up into one.

 What else? Blogging about Japan has also been a way to deal with my frustrations. There aren’t always people for me to talk to. Even if there were, I don’t want to bring people down by venting about my problems all the time. In those cases…I blog about it. If there is something that gives me a hard time, I find that blogging about it helps in a lot of ways. In the cases where I find a solution to the problem, I share it in the hopes that maybe it’ll help somebody going through the same thing.

 The last reason I blog is because I really enjoy writing and it’s fun for me.

 3-How is Japan like the video games that it’s so famous for?

 Japan is like a real-life, honest-to-goodness, warp zone. But it’s a little different than the Mario Brothers type. In the Super Mario Brothers, the warp zones could be used to help you get ahead in the game but that’s not necessarily the case with Japan. It’s more like a time-warp. I remember telling my dear sweet parents and everybody else that I’d be back in a year. That was two-and-a-half freakin’ years ago! I’ve run into many a foreigner that’s said the same thing. They originally intended to stay for only a year, but have been here for far longer, in some cases ten years or more. Is staying a bad thing? Not at all…I happen to really like it here. But Japan can be like a time warp nonetheless.

 Thanks for having me, Loco!


Donald Ash

The Japan Guy


@Don- Thanks for the post yo! Well Done! It was like a refreshing escape from the every day foolishness and just what the doctor ordered. And you’ve kinda inspired me to think about getting into some sort of martial arts. It sounds like a great way to release.

@Readers- Don blogs damn near daily over at The Japan Guy  and is also a regular Tweeter at TheJapanGuy. If you’d like to read more of his  perspective on life in Japan, please check him out. I recommend it! He generally keeps it light and lively while being fun and informative at the same time.

And tell him Loco sent you!

This party WILL continue…


Who is Loco?

PS: Click on the links below to jam with the previous guest DJs!

Blog Party #1: Saboten Girl

Blog Party #2: Wakarahen

Blog Party #3: Bad Boy!

Blog Party #4: Verity

Blog Party #5: Green Eyed Geisha

Blog Party #6: Caroline Josephine

Blog Party #7: Corinne

Blog Party #8: Rubi

Blog Party #9: Mima

Blog Party #10: Orchid

Blog Party #11: Biggie

 Blog Party #12: Craig Scanlan


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10 Responses to “Back to Life Blog Party #13: Kicking It With The Don”

  1. cocomino 9 August 2011 at 8:36 pm Permalink

    Your reason to write blog is nice and great.
    Writing something is also fun and relaxing for me.:)

    • Locohama 9 August 2011 at 8:55 pm Permalink

      Who are you talking to? Me or Don?

    • Donald Ash 11 August 2011 at 5:02 am Permalink

      Thanks, cocomino. Writing can super-therapeutic. It’s a great to get your mind of things instead of doing the alternative…going postal.

      • Donald Ash 11 August 2011 at 5:16 am Permalink

        Yargh…a typo! I meant to say writing can “be” super-therapeutic (I think Loco popped me in the head too hard 🙂 )

  2. Will 9 August 2011 at 9:38 pm Permalink

    Dear Don,

    I’m under the impression ghat Kyokushin is a source of pure evil…at least that’s what some people have professed. Bruises like a K-1 fighter, welts, and creaky joints. Oh so glad I chose origami and flower arranging.
    “There aren’t always people for me to talk to. Even if there were, I don’t want to bring people down by venting about my problems all the time.” That’s a more crushing truth heavier than the last coin fed into the machine in hopes of getting to the next level of abuse. Almost makes someone in the audience start thinking to himself, “Why do those Mario Brothers do this to themselves? Is it somehow related to the mushrooms?”
    You look happy in all of your pictures.

    • Donald Ash 11 August 2011 at 5:15 am Permalink

      No arguments there, Will. Kyokushin is pure hell when you’re on the receiving end of the bruises, sore knuckles and the like (i.e.-getting the shiznit kicked out of you). When you’re winning, though, Kyokushin is heaven. I try to reason with/lie to myself and say…it’s not fighting…it’s like a chess match. Ahh origami and flower arranging, no bruises, no getting kicked in the mouth…sigh.

      Nice Mario Brothers metaphor, Will.

      In general, I’d say I’m a pretty happy dude.

  3. Chris B 9 August 2011 at 9:52 pm Permalink

    ” but I think I saw Jesus after that kick. ”


    I get it.
    I’ll have to stop fighting when I see Jesus more than I’m introducing him to others 😉

    One of my favorite blog party posts. Cuz I didn’t know this site.

    • Donald Ash 11 August 2011 at 5:23 am Permalink

      :). You box, right, Chris? I’m sure you know, first hand (even more so than me) what those heavy blows can feel like. That’s a smart stance to take on fighting. Maybe some of the professionals should adopt the same philosophy when trying to fight way past their primes.

  4. J.Dang 10 August 2011 at 9:08 am Permalink

    Pretty enjoyable post Loco. Thanks for introducing me to Donald Ash “The Japan Guy”. His posts already look interesting!

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