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WARNING: THIS SITE FEATURES ORIGINAL THINKING...Jim Croce once sang Don't tug on Superman's cape..., which seems like reasonable advice should we not wish to anger the supreme powers. We do have this duality in our culture: the Superman that is the state collective, the leftist call to a politics of meaning managed by the state, the deification of "we're from the government and we'll take care of you" - versus the Superman that celebrates individual freedom, private property, freedom of conscience, free enterprise, and limited government. We humbly take on the latter's mantle and, eschewing the feeble tug, we dare to PULL, in hope of seeing freedom's rescue from the encroaching nanny state. We invite you, dear reader, to come and pull as well... Additionally, if you assume that means that we are unflinching, unquestioning GOP zombies, that would be incorrect. We reject statism in any form and call on individuals in our country to return to the original, classical liberalism of our founders. (We're also passionate about art, photography, cooking, technology, Judeo/Christian values, and satire as unique, individual pursuits of happiness to celebrate.)


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April 12, 2005
Japan: The wonder of Ueno Park
Filed in: Current Affairs, Japan, Photography

From Asakusa we took a short cab ride to Ueno park - another downtown Tokyo landmark.

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At the entry to the park, what was most notable, was the large number of people entering the park.

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From the Ueno rail station area - where we were dropped off - there was a climb up to the park entry area. Once past the entry we needed to descend again to enter the park proper. You can see that this is a very special place.

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They line the walkways with lanterns this time of year. I later learned this is because the people stay very late into the evening.

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The number of cherry trees and the density of their blossoms increased as we walked into the park.

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Eventually we reached a kind of courtyard where several walkways emerge into different areas of the park.

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These were the fullest, most beautiful trees we had seen.

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As we entered this walkway, if you took in the view from about ten feet up - there was nothing but blossoms as far as you could see.

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The people of Japan celebrate this season with absolute gusto. Early in the morning, junior company employees are sent to lay out tarps and save an area for their companions. Family members, too, arrive at 5:30 in the morning and save a spot. By mid-afternoon there are thousands and thousands of people gathered together under the trees. They sit here and talk and laugh and drink saki and eat their picnic provisions until past midnight - and they will do this until the blossoms have fallen off of the trees. There is not a square foot to spare.

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The camera just cannot capture the scope - the density of the foliage - the sheer number of blossoms - is overwhelming. I've never seen anything like this gathering of fleeting natural beauty and people in celebration at the same time.

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The season attracts people of all ages.

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The older generation as well.

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The media is out in force too. It's like covering football games here in the states.

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This is the entry to the park from the Ueno city district. This beautiful trained cherry tree provides an inviting temptation to what lies beyond in the park. Truly an incredible culmination to a day long tour that I will never forget.



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