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第 四 十 七 巻 六 五 三 号   ト ウ キ ョ ウ ア メ リ カ ン ク ラ ブ 

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TOKYO AMERIC AN CLUB SEPTEMBER 2019

Trophy Hunt Japan makes host history with Asia’s first Rugby World Cup

INTOUCH

イ ン タ ッ チ マ ガ ジ ン 二 〇 一 九 年 九 月 一 日 発 行 

TOKYO AMERIC AN CLUB

毎 月 一 回 一 日 発 行 

平 成 三 年 十 二 月 二 十 日 第 三 種 郵 便 物 許 可 定 価 八 0 0 円 本 体 七 四 一 円

SEPTEMBER 2019

P U L L I N G P U N C H E S + N O V E L A P P R O A C H + FA M O U S G R A P E S


A pioneer in prestigious real estate Kara Blanc in Minami-Azabu

We don’t just offer places to live, but locations where communities can grow. Our Homat Series has been offering the best in modern and stylish rentals in prime locations for international residents since 1965.

www.nskre.co.jp/english

We offer a wide range of premium residences, from highrises with sweeping panoramic views, such as the Homat Viscount in Akasaka, to low-rise residences in green and quiet neighborhoods, such as the Kara Blanc in Minami-Azabu. Our continuing goal is to provide high quality housing for expat families living and working in Tokyo’s city center.


Contents 24 R AISING THEIR GAME

FOLLOW US

With Japan set to host Asia’s first Rugby World Cup this month, Member and England coach Steve Borthwick assesses the host nation’s chances of success.

5

LE ADER SHIP

6

DIGE ST

10

AGENDA

20 DAMN FINE WINE

INDEPTH

17

MARTIAL ART S

19

BUSINE SS

20

WINE

23

AUTHOR

24

FO CUS

COMMUNITY

31

INL AND SE A CHARM

On a trip to Japan’s Seto Inland Sea, Member Efrot Weiss discovers beguiling scenery, artisanal hubs and a welcome as warm as the summer waters.

Kyle MacLachlan has left his mark on Hollywood and primetime television, and now he’s doing the same with Washington vines.

29

REGISTER

31

VOICE

32

HIGHLIGHT S

40

E S C APE

COVER IMAGE OF RUGBY’S WEBB ELLIS CUP BY YUUKI IDE

SEPTEMBER  | 1


TOKYO AMERIC AN CLUB

BOARD OF GOVERNORS

INTOUCH

Representative Governor Michael Alfant (2019)

Editor Nick Jones

First Vice President Jesse Green (2020)

editor@tac-club.org

Second Vice President Anthony Moore (2020)

Assistant Editor Owen Ziegler

Secretar y Betsy Rogers (2019)

Senior Designer Jason Garcia

Treasurer Michael Benner (2020)

Designer Gabriella Finney

Governors Trista Bridges Bivens (2020), John Flanagan (2019), James Mori (2020),

Designer Matthew Worsley

Tetsutaro Muraki (2020), Kenji Ota (2019), Alok Rakyan (2019), Heidi Regent (2019),

Production Administrator Yuko Shiroki

Sam Rogan (2019), Christina Siegel (2020),

GENERAL MANAGER

Statutor y Auditor Koichi Komoda (2020)

Anthony L Cala

Parentheses denote term limit.

CLUB COMMITTEE CHAIRS Compensation Anthony Moore Culture, Community & Enter tainment Miki Ohyama (John Flanagan)

ASSISTANT GENERAL MANAGERS Business Operations Wayne Hunter Business Suppor t Lian Chang

Finance Paul Kuo (Michael Benner)

DIRECTORS

Food & Beverage Jim Weisser (Betsy Rogers)

Food & Beverage Nori Yamazaki

House Douglas Hymas (Kenji Ota)

Recreation Susanna Yung

Human Resources Ray Klein (Sam Rogan)

Member Services Jonathan Allen

Membership Jeffrey Behr (Trista Bridges Bivens)

Membership Mari Hori

Nominating Dieter Haberl

Finance Naoto Okutsu

Recreation Bryan Norton (Christina Siegel)

Engineering Darryl Dudley

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Dean Rogers (Jesse Green)

Human Resources Shuji Hirakawa

Parentheses denote Board liaison.

SUBCOMMITTEES Community Relations Hideki Endo

Communications Shane Busato Information Technology Toby Lauer Revenue Management Suranga Hettige Don

CONTRIBUTORS

Frederick Harris Gallery JoAnn Yoneyama Golf Charles Postles

Writers

Squash Richard Kenny

Drew Damron

Swim Nils Plett

Koichi Komoda

Wine & Beverage Terry White

Efrot Weiss Photographers Enrique Balducci Donna Beeman Yuuki Ide Ken Katsurayama Kayo Yamawaki Illustrator Tania Vicedo

ADVERTISING IN INTOUCH

JOINING TOKYO AMERICAN CLUB

Explore the Club’s range of advertising possibilities by talking to

To arrange a tour of the facilities,

the Club’s exclusive advertising agency, Custom Media.

contact the Membership Office.

Custom Media President Robert Heldt

Tokyo American Club

Custom Media Publisher Simon Farrell

2-1-2 Azabudai, Minato-ku, Tokyo 106-8649

adver tising@tac-club.org

membership@tac-club.org

03-4540-7730 | www.custom-media.com

03-4588-0687 | www.tokyoamericanclub.org

All prices referenced in INTOUCH include 8 percent consumption tax.

2 | INTOUCH


EURO MERICAN

TAILOR-MADE STYLE Bespoke men’s and ladies’ fashion at Hong Kong prices

suits from $395 blazers from $275 tuxedos from $595 overcoats from $650

trousers from $135 shirts from $69 (minimum of four shirts)

Other superfine quality suits from $550 to $2,900

Prices in US dollars (excluding shipping); delivery in three weeks


LIVE JAPAN RENT

Purchase

Sale

Rent

Investment

Motoazabu 1-Chome

Motoazabu Hills Forest Tower ¡ Rent/Maint. and Reserve: 1,350,000 yen/mo. ¡ Access: 6-min. walk from Azabu-juban Station (Oedo Line) ¡ Floor: 17F (of 29F) ¡ Layout: 2 Bedrooms+2.5 Bathrooms ¡ Exclusive Area: 181.64 sqm. ¡ Built: May 2002 ¡ Deposit: 2 mos. ¡ Period: 3 years ¡ Type of lease: Fixed-term ¡ Type of transaction: Brokerage ¡ Required: Fire Insurance, rent guarantee company (80% of rent)

SALE

Roppongi 4-Chome

Park Mansion Hinokichokoen ¡ Price: 550,000,000 yen (tax included) ¡ Access: 4-min. walk from Roppongi Station (Hibiya/Oedo lines) ¡ Right: Freehold ¡ Exclusive Area: 120.67 sqm. ¡ Layout: 2 Bedrooms+ 1.5 Bathrooms ¡ Floor: 3F (of 8F) ¡ Built: March 2017 ¡ Management fee: 113,190 yen/mo. ¡ Reserve Fund: 17,010 yen/mo. ¡ Parking: 62,000 yen/mo. ¡ Management System: 24 hours ¡ Delivery Date: Consultation ¡ Type of transaction: Brokerage ¡ Status: Self-use (2nd home)

SALE

Karuizawamachi, Nagano

Kyu-Karuizawa Club Brand-New Villa ¡ Price: 138,000,000 yen (tax included) ¡ Access: 50-min. walk from Karuizawa Station (Hokuriku Shinkansen) ¡ Right: Freehold ¡ Land Area: 2163.38 sqm. ¡ Exclusive Area: 215 sqm. ¡ Structure: Mixed/Reinforced Concrete (Basement) and Wooden (1F) ¡ Layout: 3 Bedrooms+1 Bathroom ¡ Built: July 2019 ¡ Delivery Date: Consultation ¡ Type of transaction: Brokerage ¡ Status: Vacant Ad valid until 30/09/2019

※ Calculation based on the walking pace of 80 m/min

List Sotheby’s International Realty

global.listsothebysrealty.co.jp Please call

Ginza office

0800 - 800 - 5016

list-tm@list.co.jp

Address: Meidi-Ya Ginza Building 5F, 2-6-7 Ginza, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, 104-0061

To k y o

Hawaii

Asia

· Hong Kong ·Singapore ·Philippines ·Thailand


LEADERSHIP

I Values to Celebrate WORDS KOICHI KOMODA IMAGE ENRIQUE BALDUCCI

n less than one year, Tokyo will host the 2020 Olympic Games, 56 years after it staged Asia’s first-ever Olympiad. The last Olympics, in 1964, were held during a period of incredible change for Japan. That year, the country joined the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development as a full member and switched to Article 8 status of the International Monetary Fund, meaning it could hold and trade foreign currencies for the first time. With Japan’s steel, shipbuilding, engineering and chemical industries growing quickly, the country averaged an annual growth rate of 10 percent between 1953 and 1973. One US dollar was worth ¥360 in 1964, and the first postwar government bond was issued the following year. Much has changed in the intervening six decades. While the world is experiencing sluggish economic growth, the pace of change in business and technology is unprecedented. The UN’s sustainable development goals have become the focus of developed countries and corporations, and we now place more importance on poverty eradication, health and longevity, community, freedom and benevolence. Such values, which are embraced by countries like the United States, can only be achieved by vigorously practicing and defending democracy, freedom and basic human rights. The US will most likely top the medals table at next year’s Olympics in Tokyo. That’s partly because of its democratic ideals. It enjoys the fruits of its vibrant democracy, diverse population, hardworking attitude, creative thinking and education system. The result is evident in the world corporation capitalization rankings. The top six companies are all American, led by Microsoft, Apple and Amazon. Japan’s top corporation is automaker Toyota, 46th in the table. The social and economic success the US enjoys today has a lot to do with the dedication and achievements of women. Women like Ginni Rometty, the first head of tech giant IBM, and Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook. “Research already suggests that companies with more women in leadership roles have better work-life policies, smaller gender gaps in executive compensation, and more women in midlevel management,” Sandberg writes in her bestselling book Lean In. In this era, it would be astute of the Club to make use of the talents of more qualified women on the Board of Governors and its many committees. Diversity will help us continue to enjoy success through next year’s Olympics and beyond.

“DIVERSITY WILL HELP US CONTINUE TO ENJOY SUCCESS THROUGH NEXT YEAR’S OLYMPICS AND BEYOND.”

Koichi Komoda is the Club’s statutory auditor.

SEPTEMBER | 5


D I G E ST E D I TO R

Anniversary Court Thrills

Welcoming the World

YUUKI IDE

S Q UA S H

Top Japanese squash pro Ryosei Kobayashi (pictured right) won the 10th edition of the TAC Premier Classic tournament after defeating defending champ Tomotaka Endo. It was his first title in three years. The women’s division saw Risa Sugimoto triumph over Mami Sakai after finishing runner-up in last year’s competition. Sugimoto and Kobayashi each earned ¥143,000 for their efforts with the losing finalists awarded ¥73,000 each. The Japan Squash Association-sanctioned tournament was held at the Club from July 19 to 21. Turn to page 33 for photos from the final day’s action. NJ

STA F F

Distinguished Service After 50 years of exemplary service to the Club and its membership, service attendant Yohko Masamoto, (pictured) was honored with a commemorative plaque and a standing ovation from her colleagues during a ceremony at the employee recognition event on August 9. Joining the Club shortly before the Azabudai facility was rebuilt in the early 1970s, Masamoto fondly recalls the classic charm of the building that preceded the current premises. “There was this grand staircase at the main entrance,” Masamoto says, “and the atmosphere everywhere was just wonderful.” Masamoto’s dedication has helped thousands of Members and their guests enjoy the Club over the decades, from weekly mahjong players to private partygoers to hungry diners at the family-focused Garden Café in the old Azabudai clubhouse. OZ

6 | INTOUCH

There seems no discernible connection between Wales and Kitakyushu, but the industrial city in southwest Japan will be enthusiastically flying the flag of Tom Jones’ homeland this month. Since the city is the pre-Rugby World Cup base for the Welsh team, it has been adopting elements of its guest nation’s culture over the last few months. Flags and daffodils have been on display outside government buildings, with Welsh cakes served at official functions. “I am Japanese so, of course, I will be supporting Japan, but after that it will be Wales,” said one local rugby coach in an interview earlier this year. According to Member Rob Abernethy, the World Cup’s executive director, it’s an example of Japanese “omotenashi” hospitality. “Civic pride and engagement are a big part of Japanese culture and the host cities have embraced the tournament,” he says. “You have to remember, the tournament is much greater than the 12 host cities. There are 55 team camps and 16 fan zones dotted across Japan.” With Asia’s first Rugby World up kicking off on September 20, the 20 teams will be training and playing matches across the archipelago. In this month’s cover story, “Raising Their Game,” Member and former Japan forwards coach Steve Borthwick discusses the progress of the host nation since the team’s memorable showing at the 2015 World Cup in England. However the Brave Blossoms perform, the country, Abernethy says, will be certain to “embrace the tournament, the teams and the visiting fans.”


F I L MS

WINE

BOOKS

Journey’s End

City Sipper

Art of the Deal

Thirty-six superheroes, heroines and villains. Twenty-two f ilms over 11 years. One climactic capstone unlike anything in cinematic history: Avengers: Endgame. Also available on DVD at The Cellar this month are the family-friendly, animated critter romp The Secret Life of Pets 2 and Godzilla: King of the Monsters, starring Ken Watanabe and Millie Bobby Brown alongside a pantheon of city-leveling kaiju beasts. OZ

Les Vignerons Parisiens might craft its wines in the center of Paris as the city’s first urban winery, but its organically grown grapes are shipped from the southern Rhône. Pick up six or more bottles of the winery’s 2016 Le Petit Parisien red blend from The Cellar in September and you’ll enjoy a 15 percent discount. Available for ¥2,500 a bottle. Santé! NJ

Michael Shnayerson’s newest book, Boom, traces the recent history of contemporary art markets and the ‘mega dealers’ behind their extraordinary dynamics. Other new Library titles include Valerie Luiselli’s Lost Children Archive, a powerful literary novel about a family road trip across modern America, and Go Ahead in the Rain, Hanif Abdurraqib’s biography of the pioneering hip‒hop collective A Tribe Called Quest. DD

R EC I P RO C A L C LU B

S PA

E L EC T I O N

Toronto CSC Club

Refreshing Beauty

Make Your Voice Heard

Minutes from the city center, the Toronto Cricket Skating and Curling Club boasts professional-class facilities for almost any athletic pursuit. Spend the summer on the club’s manicured grounds for cricket, croquet and lawn bowling or in the lanes of the 25-meter pool. Indoors on year-round skating and curling rinks, take part in classic Canadian pastimes, no matter the weather. OZ

Welcome back the cool breezes and crisp nights of autumn in Tokyo with a refreshing facial treatment from The Spa’s exfoliation specialists. See how Dermalogica’s Pro Power Peel rejuvenators can erase wrinkles and even skin tones to leave you looking and feeling as radiant as the foliage about to turn. From September 1, book three 60-minute sessions for just ¥28,620. OZ

With the Club’s Annual General Meeting set for November 26, make sure you’re able to vote in the Board of Governors election and on Club matters. To register as a Voting Member, download a voter registration form from the Club Articles of Association & Rules page of the Club website, fill it out and submit it to Member Services in person by November 11. NJ

SEPTEMBER | 7


We design for ONE’S life and dreams. Interior Design and Renovation in Tokyo

TOKYO OFFICE Ryoshin Onarimon Bldg. 7F 6-17-15 Shinbashi, Minato-ku, Tokyo Tel: +81 (0)3 6758 3535 For more information, please email: post-onesd@koyou.co.jp

www.koyou-onesd.co.jp/en


D I G E ST W R E ST L I N G

Help at Hand

Pinning Prodigy

The vital counseling and crisis hotline services of TELL received a boost in July when the Women’s Group donated ¥2 million to the local nonprofit. “Last year, TELL was in serious financial difficulties,” says Vickie Skorji, TELL Lifeline director. “We are so grateful for the support of the Women’s Group, and TELL looks set to provide support for many years to come.” TELL provides some of the only mental health resources to Japan’s English-speaking community. OZ

Noah Leibowitz might still be in elementary school, but he’s already made a name for himself on Japan’s amateur wrestling circuit. At July’s All-Japan Youth Wrestling Championships, more than 1,200 young grapplers gathered in Wakayama for a defining test of strength, technique and mat strategy. By the end of the competition, in which the 12-year-old Member didn’t give up a single point in any match, Noah stood atop his weight class as national champion. “That wasn’t surprising to me,” Noah says. “I kind of expected that would happen.” Noah, who also took home a title at last year’s competition, trains daily at gyms around Tokyo. At Jiyugaoka Gakuin High School, he practices with older athletes with a significant size and skill advantage. “They have five all-Japan champions and a few world champions [there],” Noah says. Next year, Noah will jump up in age and weight class to compete against the same older wrestlers with whom he trains. He’s ready to hit the gym to close the gap in physicality, but he knows the biggest edge he’ll ever have isn’t anywhere near the mat. “If you don’t think about wrestling more than anyone else, you can’t become an all-Japan champion,” Noah explains. “You [have to] love wrestling like you love your mom and dad.” OZ

DONNA BEEMAN

CHARIT Y

Photo (l–r): Women’s Group director of charities Tomomi Fujita, Vickie Skorji and Women’s Group Vice President Olivia Smith

FENCING

Sharpened Skills

After watching their children excel in the Club’s fencing program, several parents decided to take up the sport themselves. Member Jerry Chan, whose daughter, Sascha, started saber fencing at the Club, says he enjoys the accessibility of the Olympic sport. “Older players can still play with younger ones, as what you lose in speed in old age, you can gain in strategy,” he says. Representing the Club, the group won two silver and two bronze medals at a fencing tournament in Saitama in July. NJ Photo (l–r): Koji Morimoto, Tetsuo Kawada, Jerry Chan, coach Ritsu Minami, Harunobu Sasakawa and Wayne Jarm

SEPTEMBER | 9


AG E N DA

Events in September 1

3

Summer Suds Beat the heat all summer with ¥750 pints of Suntory The Premium Malt’s all around the Club.

GALLERY RECEPTION:

Katsutoshi Yuasa

 Through September 30  Rainbow Café, Café Med, Traders’ Bar, American Bar & Grill, CHOP Steakhouse  Adults only  Details online

1

World Weekend Buffet Say goodbye to meal planning with this family-friendly Rainbow Café feast.  11am–8:30pm  Rainbow Café  Adults: ¥3,220; juniors (ages 12–17): ¥2,050; big kids (ages 7–11): ¥1,500; little kids (ages 3–6): ¥1,030; infants (2 & under): free

1

Squash 101 Kick-start a lifetime of love for squash at this four-lesson introduction with experienced Club pro Rico Cheung.  Sundays  3–4:30pm  Squash Court 1  ¥8,640  Members only  Ages 8 & above  Sign up online

1–30

Classic Nights Culinary trends change, but good taste never goes out of fashion. Enjoy a menu of yesteryear Club favorites all month.  5–10pm (except September 6)  American Bar & Grill  Details online

1

Road to Japan Bowling Challenge Tally scores to win big in this Rugby World Cup-themed competition. Runs through October 31.

Katsutoshi Yuasa always begins with a photograph. But he is not a photographer. The subsequent weeks he spends carving out the textures for his woodblock prints are proof of that. Through September 23, Yuasa’s blend of digital photography and avant-garde printmaking on display at the Frederick Harris Gallery challenges more than one’s sense of genre. OZ Moment I realized I wanted to become an artist. When I was studying at London’s Royal College of Art. There were so many artists living off their works that I realized it could be a career.

 6:30–7:30pm  Frederick Harris Gallery (B1 Formal Lobby)  Free  Open to adults, invitees and Members only

Head to the Club’s rooftop beer garden for drinks and summer bites under the stars. Continues every Monday, except national holidays.

Make new friends and pick up a lifelong love of reading at this inspiring weekly series.

2

3

Women’s Group members share snippets of their own culture at this allinclusive discussion of seasonal topics.

Marvel at the marbling of your complimentary 5oz (140g) tenderloin when you order any T-bone steak at this weekly CHOP special.

10 | INTOUCH

Artist, living or dead, I’d most like to share a meal with. Hokusai or Picasso. I’d be interested in seeing how they eat their meals, though I doubt they’d be very interested in the food.

4

Rooftop Mondays

 Bowling Center  ¥500 (game fee excluded)  Ages 7 & under require parental supervision  Details online

 10am  CHOP Steakhouse  Free  Women’s Group members only

My perfect creative environment. Traveling the world, from the North Pole and the Amazon to the International Space Station, all while creating my art.

2

 6–9pm  Splash!  Food and drinks (two hours): ¥5,310; food only: ¥3,150; Nightfall wine upgrade: ¥5,850  Details online

Culture Connections

What I would tell my 20-year-old self. Don’t worry. You can be an artist.

T-Bone Tuesdays

 6–11pm  CHOP Steakhouse  Reservations recommended

Wednesday Storytime

 4–4:30pm  Children’s Library  Free  Ages 2–6

4–6

Moules Frites Special This iconic Belgian combo of steamed mussels, crispy fries and a baguette returns by popular demand.  11am–8:30pm  Café Med  Moules frites: ¥1,730; Blue Moon Belgian White: ¥760  Details online


6

First Friday: Rugby World Cup Raise a glass (or a few) to Japan’s firstever staging of rugby’s showcase event while enjoying some post-vacation mingling with friends.  6–8pm  Winter Garden, American Bar & Grill  ¥2,160 (guests: ¥5,940); walk-ins: ¥3,240 (guests: ¥7,020)  Limit: five guests per membership  Sign up online

6

Perfect Porterhouse Night

YUUKI IDE

8

Sky Pool Fun Fest With more than 43,000 inground and aboveground fixtures dotting the city’s backyards, Los Angeles just might be America’s private pool mecca. Aside from Tokyo’s smattering of municipal sports centers and overcrowded water parks, it can be tough to find a place for a cooling midsummer dip this side of the Pacific. Unless, of course, you’re a Member. This month, the annual Sky Pool Funfest returns just in time for the hottest days of the year for an afternoon of aquatic games, activities and splashing under the sun. Tumble down inflatable slides, scramble across a slippery obstacle course or “walk on water” inside a giant, see-through ball. While the long summer break might be over, the fun never stops at the Sky Pool. OZ  12–2pm & 2:30–4:30pm  Sky Pool  ¥2,160 (guests: ¥2,592)  Ages 5 & above  Sign up online

4 & 18

6

Polish your public speaking skills and leadership acumen at this regular Club gathering of motivational voices.

Mingle with other mothers at this family-friendly get-together every Friday afternoon.

 12–1:30pm  CHOP Steakhouse (September 4); Washington & Lincoln rooms (September 18)  ¥2,380 (guests: ¥2,765)  Sign up online

 2pm  Childcare Center  Free

Toastmasters Luncheon

5

Enrichment Class Registration Still going strong in its 70th year, the Women’s Group kicks off another semester of classes designed to teach new skills, hone old talents and widen social circles.

Mommy and Toddler Time

The best things in life come in threes, like this winning trifecta of 21oz (600g) strip loin, 5oz (140g) tenderloin and bone marrow. Make it a Friday habit you’ll never want to kick.  6–11pm  CHOP Steakhouse  ¥12,500  Reservations recommended

6–7

Surf ’n’ Turf Special Enjoy the best of both culinary worlds by adding a whole lobster tail to any weekend steak dinner for just ¥1,970.  5–9:30pm  American Bar & Grill, Traders’ Bar  Details online

7–8

Back-to-School Bowling Before the homework starts to pile up, head to the Bowling Center for snacks, soda and the chance to win the slickest school supplies around.  10am–9pm  Bowling Center  ¥1,000  Ages 5–17  Details online

7–8

World Weekend Buffet This spread of Tex-Mex favorites will have you singing the praises of the Rainbow Café chefs in two languages.

Movie Night

 11am–8:30pm  Rainbow Café  Adults: ¥3,220; juniors (ages 12–17): ¥2,050; big kids (ages 7–11): ¥1,500; little kids (ages 3–6): ¥1,030; infants (2 & under): free

Pizza, popcorn and plenty of bigscreen thrills await youngsters.

7–8

6

 6–8pm  Toko Shinoda & Yukiko Maki classrooms  ¥3,240 (guests: ¥3,900)  Ages 5–12  Sign up online

Weekend Unwinders Celebrate the end of the week until the start of the next one with a selection of outstanding wines for just ¥5,000 or ¥10,000 a bottle.  Weekends  American Bar & Grill, Winter Garden  Details online

 10am  Sign up online

SEPTEMBER  | 1 1


AG E N DA

8 & 22

10

11 & 25

Discover adventure, friendships and lifelong skills through the Clubsponsored Troop 51.

The NFL season returns to Traders’ as the Kansas City Chiefs take on the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Put your court skills to the test in these midweek tournaments for dynamic squash duos.

 5–7pm  Activity Room  Details online

 7pm  Traders’ Bar  Details online

10

Women’s Group Welcome Back

 6:30–8pm  Squash Courts  Free  Open to all ages (under 16s require Squash Committee approval)

Boy Scout Meeting

Tailgate Tuesday

11

Cocktail Connections Kick back at a fun evening of happyhour drinks and mingling.  5pm  CHOP Steakhouse  Women’s Group members only  Details online

Explore the calendar of upcoming social events, fundraising sales and tours and meet the instructors of the dozens of cultural, cooking, art and lifestyle classes.  10am–12pm  Manhattan III  Free  Details online

Squash Pair Challenge

12 & 24

Squash Social Night Meet fellow Club squash lovers and test yourself against Club pro Peter Amaglio and former national champ Hitoshi Ushiogi.  6:30pm  Squash Courts  Free

10

Body Conditioning 101

JASON GARCIA

10

Gin Workshop “First you take a drink,” American novelist F Scott Fitzgerald once said of gin, his poison of choice, “then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you.” Instead of throwing back gin rickeys like Fitzgerald or any of his famously thirsty characters, embrace the finer points of the spirit experiencing a renaissance at a tasting with Nathan Baggs, the Club’s beverage director. Featuring five gins from the British Isles, Iceland and one bottled at Suntory’s craft distillery in Osaka, the tasting will include a menu of perfect pairings, such as juniper and salmon pinchos, marsala chicken tempura and lamb sliders with cucumber and mint relish. Fitzgerald famously preferred gin for its supposed lack of detectability on his breath, but the craft concoctions available at this evening are sure to delight so much that not even Fitzgerald would care if his old chaps could tell what he’d been sipping. OZ  6:30–8:45pm  Washington & Lincoln rooms  ¥5,400  Limit: two guests per membership  Adults only  Sign up online

12 | INTOUCH

Our lives might be thousands of years removed from our caveman origins, but our bodies aren’t. We’re simply not designed for the conveniences of modern life. “The more sedentary you are, the more dysfunctional your body will be,” says Club trainer Takeshi Hirata. Which is why he’s determined to help Members build and maintain a healthy, balanced body. At this month’s free workshop, he will explain how looking after your joints, improving your posture and staying flexible leads to more effective workouts and less chance of injury. Hirata, a certified Kinstretch instructor, will reveal why the exercise regimen, with its focus on body control, flexibility and strength, is favored by so many professional athletes. “I am going to address common roadblocks to reaching fitness goals and teach ways to eliminate them, so you can unlock your physical potential,” Hirata says. NJ  7–8pm  Beate Sirota Gordon classroom  Free  Ages 16 & above  Sign up online


14

Art Attack With Japan’s fiery-red foliage set to draw its annual throngs of camerawielding admirers, celebrate the season with a painting of autumn leaves.  10:30am–12:30pm  Toko Shinoda & Yukiko Maki classrooms  ¥3,780 (guests: ¥4,540)  Ages 6–12  Sign up online

14

DIY Comic Book Club JASON GARCIA

21

Exploring the Stacks For so many youngsters, reading never gets beyond the realm of homework. But could pulling back the curtain on the Library make their next book jump off the page? At the monthly Young Librarians program, bookworms-in-training explore the inner workings of a library. “You get to help people find and introduce books,” Mana Trapanese (pictured left) says of working alongside the Club’s professional librarians. “You can spend a long time in the Library,” adds her sister, Leilani. Led by Drew Damron, the Club’s senior librarian, this inaugural program introduces young readers to the systems for locating and reshelving books. “It’s fun because you have to know where the books are to help other people,” says Mana. One day, Mana, 7, and Leilani, 5, might curate their own library. Mana could add the extra seating and expanded shelf space she wants. And Leilani? “More books about turtles.” OZ  Every third Saturday  2–2:30pm  Children’s Library  Free  Ages 6–12  Details online

12 & 28

Fitness Center Orientation Start on the road to wellness with a beginner’s guide to the Fitness Center. And if you haven’t consulted a trainer in the past six months, you’ll receive 50 percent off a 60-minute session.  September 12: 6:30–7pm; September 28: 10–10:30am  Fitness Center  Free

13

Club Speaker Series: Jim Rogers The American investor opines on Japan’s economic future, Asian investing and more at this dinner event. Rogers explains where he’s putting his money on page 19.  7–9:30pm  Manhattan III  ¥10,500 (guests: ¥12,500)  Sign up online

13

13 & 27

Elementary school kids explore the world of Scouting through regular meetings of the Club-sponsored Pack 51.

Cellist Ayumu Kato and flautist Satoe Kida provide a soothing start to the weekend. Violinist Mizuki Horikoshi plays with Kato two weeks later.

 7–9pm  Activity Room  Details online

 6–9pm  Winter Garden  Free  Details online

Cub Scout Meeting

Winter Garden Melodies

Flex your creative muscles to craft your own comic book.  11:30am–1:30pm  Teen Connection  ¥2,160 (guests: ¥2,590)  Ages 6–14  Sign up online

14–16

World Weekend Buffet Rainbow Café chefs craft a delectable spread of ahi poke, loco moco, kalua pork and other Hawaiian classics.  11am–8:30pm  Rainbow Café  Adults: ¥3,220; juniors (ages 12–17): ¥2,050; big kids (ages 7–11): ¥1,500; little kids (ages 3–6): ¥1,030; infants (2 & under): free

15

Bookbinding for Kids Ever wonder how books come to be? Learn how to craft your own bound volume using paper, paint and thread.  1:30–2:30pm  Jean Pearce Classroom  ¥1,620 (guests: ¥1,940)  Ages 6–12  Sign up online

17–18

Tokyo Here & Now Learn from experts in everything from earthquake preparedness to local cuisine at this comprehensive, twoday orientation on thriving in Japan.  8:30am–2pm  Manhattan I  ¥10,800 (guests & non-Members: ¥16,200)  Open to the public  Sign up online

19

Book Lovers’ Group The Club’s brigade of bibliophiles let their literary thoughts run wild during a free discussion at this monthly meeting.  Every third Thursday  11am–12:30pm & 5:30–7pm  The Cellar  Free  Details online

SEPTEMBER  | 13


AG E N DA

24

Coffee Connections Chew the fat over a cup of joe with old friends and new acquaintances.  10am  CHOP Steakhouse  Details online

25

Club Blend Coffee Tasting Which new coffee beans will grace the Club’s grinders? Sip from four arabica bean blends and vote for your favorite.  8–10am (Café Med) & 11:30am–2pm (Winter Garden)  Free  Details online

25

Meet the Author: Kyoko Nakajima YUUKI IDE

21

Disaster Awareness Day Japan and earthquakes are as synonymous as any nation and natural disaster can be, but when it comes to the safety of you and your family, it pays to prepare for more than the threat of a tremor. Take the first step toward emergency preparedness at the Club’s annual Disaster Awareness Day this month. Join representatives from the Azabu Fire Department, Minato Ward’s foreign residents’ helpdesk and local emergen-

cy medical services for an afternoon of tips on planning for the worst and emergency response training. Participants can take in a fire hose demonstration before learning how to handle a fire extinguisher and navigate their way out of a smoke-filled room. However long you’ve lived in Japan, this information-packed day will leave you ready to cope with whatever Mother Nature throws at you. OZ

 2:30–4pm  Parking Area (1F)  Free  Open to the public  Details online

19

20–22

Producer of the most Robert Parker 100-point Cabs, Hundred Acre unveils its newly released 2016 vintage and 2014 Wraith Cabernet Sauvignon.

Enjoy up to 80 percent off a range of beautiful glassware by luxury brands Riedel, Spiegelau and Nachtmann.

Hundred Acre Wine Launch

 5–7pm  CHOP Steakhouse  ¥15,000  Limit: one guest per membership  Sign up online

20

Rugby World Cup at Traders’ Couldn’t grab tickets to the Rugby World Cup’s curtain-raiser at Tokyo Stadium? Catch all the action at Traders’ Bar. On page 24, Member and England forwards coach Steve Borthwick shares his thoughts on the 20-team tournament.  Traders’ Bar  Details online

14 | INTOUCH

Riedel Sale

 7:30am–9pm  The Cellar  Details online

21–23

World Weekend Buffet Rich spices, fresh seafood and noodles galore are on Rainbow Café menu at this showcase of East Asian cuisine.  11am–8:30pm  Rainbow Café  Adults: ¥3,220; juniors (ages 12–17): ¥2,050; big kids (ages 7–11): ¥1,500; little kids (ages 3–6): ¥1,030; infants (2 & under): free

Acclaimed author Kyoko Nakajima discusses her award-winning 2010 novel The Little House. On page 23, Nakajima ponders the success of the book.  7–8pm  Toko Shinoda & Yukiko Maki classrooms  ¥1,620 (guests: ¥1,940)  Sign up online

25

Pursued by Bear Wine Dinner with Kyle MacLachlan The “Twin Peaks” leading man shares his journey from Tinseltown to the vineyards of the Pacific Northwest at this exclusive event. MacLachlan dishes on Pursued by Bear’s genesis on page 21.  7–10pm  CHOP Steakhouse  ¥15,000  Sign up online

26

Nokogiriyama Hiking Tour Trek through the Chiba foothills on the way to breathtaking views on this Women’s Group tour.  8am–6pm  Women’s Group members: ¥10,800 (non-Women’s Group members: ¥11,880)  Ages 18 & above  Sign up online

26

Penfolds Grange Night at CHOP For one night only, pair discounted pours of Penfolds Grange celebrated wines with CHOP’s exquisite prime cuts for an unforgettable culinary experience.  7–9:30pm  CHOP Steakhouse  Reservations recommended  Details online


Learn the basics of squash or refine your game with Club professional Noriko Kamiyama.

Coming up in October

 10–11:30am  Squash Courts 2 & 3  Free  Sign up online

1

27

Ladies’ Squash Clinic

24 GALLERY RECEPTION:

Tomoyasu Katsuta At his western Tokyo enclave, Tomoyasu Katsuta teaches pottery workshops, hosts jazz musicians in his atelier and, out back, stokes the embers of his half-buried anagama kiln. It is not the typical life of a Tokyoite, but Katsuta, whose Club exhibition runs through October 14, long ago realized true refinement in his art demands a certain detachment from the ordinary. OZ Moment I realized I wanted to become an artist. In my late teens, when I started to realize the contradictions between the worlds of man and nature. What I would tell my 20-yearold self. Don’t just focus on living a solitary life—notice and be thankful for everything that helps you live that way. My perfect creative environment. A rustic place ensconced in nature where I can be pensive and pray. Artist, living or dead, I’d most like to share a meal with. [Legendary samurai] Musashi Miyamoto. Not for his swordsmanship, but for his unparalleled brushwork as an artist.  6:30–7:30pm  Frederick Harris Gallery (B1 Formal Lobby)  Free  Open to adults, invitees and Members only

27

Premium Friday Clear your calendar, switch off your phone and enjoy this supercharged TGIF of happy-hour bites and drinks.

CHOP Steakhouse Osechi Welcome 2020 with a feast of CHOP flavors. Place your osechi order before November 30 to receive a ¥5,000 voucher for your next CHOP dinner.

 3–7pm  Winter Garden, Traders’ Bar  Details online

 ¥38,000  Details online

27

First Friday: Oktoberfest

Island Breeze

4

Get swept up in the tropical vibes of this Women’s Group post-vacation shindig at the Club’s rooftop terrace.

Sausages and sauerkraut. Lederhosen and oompah tunes. Beer, beer and beer. What more could you want?

 6–9pm  Splash!  Women’s Group members: ¥5,400 (non-Women’s Group members & guests: ¥8,900)  Sign up online

 6–8pm  Winter Garden, American Bar & Grill  ¥2,000 (guests: ¥5,500)  Limit: five guests per membership  Sign up online

28

6

Saturday Storytime Curious minds kick off the weekend with a book-inspired morning of magic, adventure and wonder.  11:30am–12pm  Children’s Library  Free  Ages 2–6

28–29

World Weekend Buffet

Kamakura Samurai Archery Ceremony Tour Travel to Kamakura for a masterful display of traditional horseback archery on the grounds of the majestic Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine.  10am–3:30pm  ¥2,000  Ages 16 & above  Sign up online from September 6

As the seasons change, so too does Rainbow Café’s chef-crafted menu of autumn favorites at this weekendlong feast.  11am–8:30pm  Rainbow Café  Adults: ¥3,220; juniors (ages 12–17): ¥2,050; big kids (ages 7–11): ¥1,500; little kids (ages 3–6): ¥1,030; infants (2 & under): free

29

Fall Fit Fest The weather outside is cooling down, but you can keep your heartrate up at this motivational afternoon of Les Mills workouts and Lululemon apparel.  1–4pm  Gymnasium, The Studio  ¥2,160  Ages 16 & above  Members only  Sign up online

13

Family Yoga Families who play together, namaste together.  12:30–1:30pm & 1:45–2:45pm  The Studio  Ages 6 & above  Details online Displayed Club prices from October will exclude consumption tax.

SEPTEMBER  | 15


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I N D E P T H | M A RT I A L A RT S

Playing the Hero

When his competitive taekwondo career ended, the Club’s newest martial arts instructor began trading blows on camera. WORDS OWEN ZIEGLER

Chuck Johnson

C

huck Johnson was still new to Tokyo when a student approached him during his English school’s welcome party. Why, the man wondered, did this new teacher look like he could fight off everyone in the room? Johnson explained how he was a former Michigan State taekwondo champion and ranked fourth dan. The student wasn’t surprised. “He said, ‘We should fight,’” recalls Johnson of that encounter in 2002. The one-time Olympic hopeful had given up professional fighting and planned on staying abroad no more than a year. After sparring, though, the student offered him a job as a bodyguard for visiting celebrities. Johnson’s first film role followed. During production of 2004’s Godzilla: Final Wars, in which he played a soldier, a director pulled Johnson aside. How about putting his martial arts skills to use with the movie’s professional stunt team? “When the opportunity to do it on camera came,” says Johnson, 40, who wore out VHS tapes of Bruce Lee

and Jackie Chan growing up outside Detroit, “I just couldn’t resist.” Several years and dozens of TV, film and video game credits later, Johnson has molded himself into one of Asia’s preeminent foreign stunt actors. He still trains in and teaches martial arts, including the Club’s youth taekwondo program, but his upcoming stunt choreography course will be the first chance for Tokyo’s budding action heroes to pull back the curtain on Hollywood stage fighting in English. Even in his early years, Johnson sensed the value of a Western stuntman in Japan’s homogenous entertainment industry. “For at least a decade, I was the only [foreign] stunt guy here,” Johnson explains. “There could be a casting where they needed a 50-year-old, balding, overweight, white guy. ‘We don’t have that, so send Chuck. Chuck, you’re being Santa Claus today, OK?’” Johnson made the most of that unusual monopoly, which meant reorienting his taekwondo skills. “In real fighting, no matter how much it hurts, you never want to show it,”

Johnson says. “In fight choreography, you play all that up. The goal is to get people to see it.” Collaboration is key, he adds. An experienced team of stunt actors may seem like mortal enemies, but that only emerges when they know when a roundhouse is coming or how to sell a landed punch. No one understands the appeal of traditional arts more than Johnson, but he’s proof of how transferring skills can lead to new passions and new careers. With superhero flicks more popular than ever and video game profits ballooning every year, who says there’s no future in playing the hero? “All I can say is, if you like action movies,” Johnson says, “come learn how they work.”

STUNT CHOREOGRAPHY  September 7–December 14  Ages 8–15  Sign up online TAEKWONDO FOR KIDS  September 7–December 14  Ages 4–12  Sign up online

SEPTEMBER  | 17


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I N D E P T H | B U S I N E SS

What does the future hold for Japan’s economy? It will be very challenging, and things will get progressively more challenging. Of course, Japan has potential. People have been known to make money in a declining economy, but it depends on what you do. How would you assess the success of the so-called “three arrows” of monetary easing, fiscal stimulus and structural reforms touted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe? As I have said in interviews and in my books, they have not really delivered. What has Japan done right in the last few years? Trying to increase immigration numbers and trying to be more startup-friendly.

Jim Rogers

Betting Big in Asia Ahead of hosting a dinner at the Club, investor Jim Rogers explains why Japan no longer appeals. WORDS NICK JONES

N

ot many investors would put their money on a highly secretive, repressive state. But then Jim Rogers is not most investors. The 72-year-old financial guru has been bucking market trends—and reaping the rewards—since he set up the Quantum Fund with George Soros in 1973. “The Chinese and Russians are pouring into North Korea because they see great opportunities,” he said in an interview earlier this year. “There are [vast] natural resources [as well as] dedicated, cheap and educated laborers.” Rogers, who is an outside director of Ananti, the only South Korean resort operator in the north, has repeatedly

extolled the investment potential of the Korean Peninsula. The Singapore-based American is famously less bullish about Japan. At an exclusive dinner at the Club this month, Rogers, whose latest book is titled Warning to Japan, will offer his thoughts on a range of topics, including Japan’s continuing struggle with economic growth and why the world is headed for another catastrophic economic downturn. Ahead of his appearance, Rogers ruminates on what the future might hold for the world’s third-largest economy: Why did you choose to sell all your shares in Japan? Because I think there are far better places other than Japan to invest.

What are the country’s selling points? Its stability, good service and potential in a declining economy. In a recent Japan Times column, Richard Solomon wrote: “Could Japan be well positioned to benefit from emergent technologies? The nation’s aging labor force is shrinking, educated and dedicated — attributes that match what labor-saving producing firms need in tomorrow’s knowledge-based economy.” What are your thoughts? It’s a possibility, but it would be limited. What advice would you give policy makers in Japan? Reread history and rethink everything. You have spoken a great deal about the opportunities on the Korean Peninsula. Why are you so bullish? Things take time, but there is potential. Few people may see the potential, but it is there. How do you see economic growth in Asia over the next decade? I live in Singapore, not in the USA. The region will grow. Welcome to Asia’s age. CLUB SPEAKER SERIES: JIM ROGERS  September 13  7–9:30pm  Manhattan III  ¥10,500 (guests: ¥12,500)  Sign up online

SEPTEMBER  | 19


INDEPTH | WINE

Kyle MacLachlan

20 | INTOUCH


Damn Fine Wine

Ahead of hosting a wine dinner at the Club this month, actor Kyle MacLachlan discusses his journey from the silver screen to the cellar. WORDS OWEN ZIEGLER

K

yle plays innocents who are interested in the mysteries of life. He’s the person you trust enough to go into a strange world with.” Those words of American director David Lynch about his noted Dune, Blue Velvet and “Twin Peaks” collaborator Kyle MacLachlan hold true today. Since stepping away from the big screen, the actor has been on his own pleasantly strange journey. “Ann Colgin and I met by chance,” says MacLachlan, 60, of his encounter with the Napa winemaking doyen 20 years ago. “We were doing an article for InStyle magazine. The writer had put together a celebrity, a winemaker and a restaurateur.” “I was the celebrity, not the winemaker,” the actor clarifies with characteristic good charm. MacLachlan had overcome the shaky reception of 1984’s sci-fi epic Dune to become one of most recognizable stars of the ’90s as Special Agent Dale Cooper in the acclaimed TV series “Twin Peaks.” Years prior, Colgin herself had pioneered a model of sourcing grapes from established vineyards that would see her crowned one of California’s foremost Cabernet vintners. After work on the article wrapped, MacLachlan, a selfconfessed oenophile, set out to learn what he could from Napa’s newest legend. “I would ask her lots of questions about wine and winemaking and how she did it and why she did it,” MacLachlan says. “That’s how I slowly began to piece together the idea that I could do a similar kind of structure in Washington State.” That idea would become Pursued by Bear. Based just north of the Oregon border in Walla Walla, the label’s titular Cabernet Sauvignon, Baby Bear Syrah and Blushing Bear rosé have turned heads in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. Many celebrity wines never rise above the realm of vanity projects, but Pursued by Bear’s 2015 Cab, which MacLachlan pours alongside his Syrah and rosé at the Club on September 25, garnered a laudable 92 points from Wine Spectator magazine. MacLachlan’s passion for grapes may have matured over time, though he can’t recall being tempted by anything else in his younger years. “In college, it seemed to me the one sole purpose of drinking beer was to get absolutely hammered and fall down

and throw up,” MacLachlan says. “I wasn’t really interested in that. Wine seemed like a much more sophisticated beverage, so I just gravitated towards it.” With the help of Colgin and her chief winemaker, Mark Aubert, MacLachlan gradually convinced himself that it was time to start his own label. In 2005, the prohibitive prices and availability of Napa Valley land proved a stumbling block. He decided to look north to his native Washington State. “My father was getting older, and I felt like I was neglecting that relationship a little bit,” MacLachlan admits. “I thought, ‘You know what, this wine project could serve a greater purpose, give me a reason to go home more frequently.’” MacLachlan began scouting locations in the Yakima Valley and meeting local suppliers, often with his father in the car beside him. He fell in love again with the unique terroir of his home, as well as its sun-drenched days and cool, desert-like nights, and a brightness and layered acidity in almost every varietal. His connection with Colgin enabled him to secure more than advice. His 12 French oak Taransaud barrels are, according to MacLachlan, his wine’s “signature element.” “They’re rare, highly sought-after, spoken for well in advance,” MacLachlan explains of Taransaud’s tightgrained coopering. “I tend to age the wines a little longer, and [the barrels] really help to keep the oxygen out, without over-oaking.” Pursued by Bear has outgrown its origins as a passion project into a full-fledged, small-batch winery, and MacLachlan’s visit to the Club will be his first to Japan as a winemaker. Even so, he expects “Twin Peaks” devotees to enjoy the coffee undertones of the Baby Bear Syrah while “Sex and the City” fans might be drawn to the effervescence of the Bandol-style Blushing Bear rosé. MacLachlan doesn’t want to tell you what to drink, though. Just to help you enjoy the journey as much as he has. “Every day, once a day,” says Special Agent Dale Cooper, “give yourself a present.” PURSUED BY BEAR WINE DINNER WITH KYLE MACLACHLAN  September 25  7–10pm  CHOP Steakhouse  ¥15,000  Limit: two guests per membership  Sign up online

SEPTEMBER | 21


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I N D E P T H | AU T H O R

Rewriting History

Set to speak at the Club this month, award-winning author Kyoko Nakajima ruminates on the success of her landmark 2010 novel. WORDS OWEN ZIEGLER

T

here it all was: white picket fence, gabled front entrance, red tiled roof. “I was taken aback,” Kyoko Nakajima says. “I’d never seen it with my own eyes, you know.” Nakajima, 55, wandered through the Toho Studios soundstage. It was 2014, and legendary director Yoji Yamada was shooting his adaptation of her award-winning novel The Little House. Nakajima ambled through the grassy front yard and into the Showa-era kitchen where Taki, the Hirai family maid and narrator for all but the novel’s pivotal epilogue, spends as much time performing her duties as she does observing her employers. Through the glass of a period cupboard, Nakajima stood transfixed by the finery of her characters’ porcelain tableware. “Just to take in all that detail,” Nakajima says, “I almost wished I’d seen the movie before I ever started writing.” Despite her self-deprecation, Nakajima’s 2010 novel lacks nothing in the way of detail. Her account of one well-to-do family in antebellum Tokyo was awarded the Naoki Prize, one of Japan’s two highest literary honors. Nakajima was 46. Writing was always Nakajima’s plan. After college, she took up magazine editing to pay the bills, but she soon discovered she had little time and energy for fiction. At 32, she was at a crossroads. “If I worked a little harder, I’d make deputy editor-in-chief, then editor-in-chief,” Nakajima explains. “I don’t think I could have turned back by that point, so I quit.” Nakajima spent a year teaching at an elementary school in Seattle, Washington before returning to Tokyo as a freelance writer. Untethered, she could devote herself to fiction whenever she chose. “I was so used to constantly hurrying as a full-time employee,” Nakajima recalls. “As a freelancer, I was almost surprised by the free time that I had.”

Kyoko Nakajima

Nakajima published her time-skipping debut novel, Futon, in 2003. In the years since, she has gone only one year without publishing at least one major work. Her 25th and latest novel, Yume Miru Teikoku Toshokan, was released in May. For a writer as industrious as Nakajima, Ginny Tapley Takemori’s English translation of the nearly decade-old The Little House (Nakajima’s first book to be published in English) can feel like crossing paths with someone she’s already bid farewell. “During the writing process, you want to care for the story and the characters as intimately as a mother,” Nakajima says. “But at some point, you have to let go.” Perhaps that is why Nakajima still declines to clarify the dynamics at play between the Hirai family and their maid. Speculation among Japanese readers ran rampant in 2010 and returned with Yamada’s cinematic adaptation. At this month’s literary evening at the Club, Nakajima welcomes English readers into the fray. “I don’t believe writers should go around pointing out which interpretations are right and which are wrong,” Nakajima says. “A book belongs to the person who reads it.” MEET THE AUTHOR: KYOKO NAKAJIMA  September 25  7–8pm  Toko Shinoda and Yukiko Maki classrooms  ¥1,620 (guests: ¥1,940)  Copies of The Little House available for ¥1,620  Sign up online

SEPTEMBER | 23


INDEPTH | FO CUS

24 | INTOUCH

Japan take on England at Twickenham in November 2018


RAISING THEIR GAME With the first Rugby World Cup in Asia kicking off in Japan this month, can the hosts inspire a generation? WORDS NICK JONES

T

he game was billed as a David versus Goliath showdown, but few rugby fans really believed that minnows Japan would fell South Africa’s mighty Springboks. On the opening weekend of the 2015 Rugby World Cup, Japan did just that. “One of the most famous victories in the history of sport, I would go so far as saying. Not just the game of rugby union,” declared one South African TV commentator. It wasn’t just the fact that a relatively unknown side had beaten a rugby powerhouse (packed with 851 caps), it was the way in which Japan claimed their historic scalp. With the Springboks leading Japan 32-29 in the dying minutes, the Brave Blossoms’ talisman captain, Michael Leitch, twice chose not to kick a penalty and draw the pool B match. Just meters from South Africa’s try line, red-and-whitehooped shirts flung themselves at a wall of towering defenders, urged on by the delirious crowd. Then, fending off a South African with one hand, Amanaki Lelei Mafi deftly slipped the ball to Karne Hesketh. The New Zealand-born wing powered over the line, knocking the rugby world off its axis. It’s an encounter Member Steve Borthwick isn’t likely to forget. He was Japan’s forwards coach at the time.

SEPTEMBER | 25


I N D E P T H | FO CU S “For me, it was after the game and seeing the joy in the players and seeing spectators crying in the stands,” he says. “Everybody was hit by the emotions of that game. That was some day in Brighton.” Japan went on to mesmerize crowds around England with their pacey, flowing rugby and fearlessness. They racked up two more pool wins, over Samoa and the United States, but it didn’t prove enough to progress in the competition. Japan flew home as the first team ever to win three group games and not make the knockout stage. While the Brave Blossoms didn’t secure a quarterfinal spot, Borthwick, 39, says the team still accomplished

its goals of inspiring the nation, establishing a new legacy for Japanese rugby and becoming the breakout team of the tournament. “When you hear in the second week of the tournament that all Japan shirts around England are sold out, you hear that 30 million people [in Japan] stayed up in the middle of the night to watch a rugby game and you hear that Japan is everybody’s second team of the tournament, I think we achieved those three things,” he says. The World Cup represented the culmination of four years of work led by Eddie Jones, the former coach of Australia. “Eddie Jones left no stone unturned in terms of the detail

Steve Borthwick

Fan Talk

Rugby-loving Members weigh up their teams’ chances of lifting the Webb Ellis Cup on November 2.

Paul Hardisty

Anthony Blick

Neil Bevan

Ciaran Gannon

“For me, [the result] is never a done deal. It’s a World Cup and teams feel a different pressure. Look at the Wallabies versus the All Blacks [last month]. I am sure not too many thought the Wallabies would get up and win. I believe Japan will do well in front of their home crowd. It’s anyone’s.”

“I’m hoping that by Team USA being in the World Cup and performing somewhat well, it could raise exposure in the States and hopefully we’ll get some more talent in the future. Right now, we’re plus-250,000 [to win the tournament]. But maybe we can upset France and sneak into the quarterfinals.”

“Wales has got, I think, the best defensive side in the game. Offensively, they tend to feed off the mistakes of other teams. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but mentally they need to be able to generate more opportunities. Semifinals they can get to, I think, but New Zealand is always the one to beat.”

“The biggest difference between this Irish team and previous World Cup teams is the depth of the squad. Ireland has at least two quality players at every position. An ideal run would have Ireland top its group, then go on to beat South Africa in the quarterfinals, destroy England in the semis and take down the mighty All Blacks in the final. We all can dream.”

26 | INTOUCH


of the preparation,” says Borthwick, who represented England at the 2007 World Cup in France. “And that ultimately led to a very good performance by the Japan team.” While both Jones and Borthwick are now coaching England, Borthwick is quick to praise Japan’s progress under current coach, Kiwi Jamie Joseph. “You saw how they played against England last November,” Borthwick says of the match that Japan led at halftime before finally losing. “There’s a change in expectation. They expect to win.” The intervening years have seen wins over the likes of Italy and Georgia, a draw against France and a recent Pacific Nations Cup triumph. Players and fans alike will be hoping that the success continues when Japan kicks off its World Cup campaign on September 20 against Russia, this time as tournament hosts. “This tournament is the first one that I can remember where you’ve got six or seven teams that can win it. I think it’s a highly competitive tournament,” Borthwick says. “It’s crucial to get that good start and get momentum.” Japan will need it in a tough pool that also includes Scotland, Samoa and Ireland. The 20-team competition takes place over six weeks, with matches played in 12 venues across Japan. Yokohama Stadium will host the final on November 2. According to Member Rob Abernethy, executive director of the World Cup, applications for tickets have exceeded 5.5 million and more than 400,000 fans are expected to travel to Japan from abroad. “We are anticipating a sell-out,” he says. “The demand has been exceptional, greater than any previous tournament, which shows just how attractive Asia’s first Rugby World Cup is.”

Just as Japan captured the imagination of so many rugby fans across the world four years ago, Abernethy believes ordinary Japanese will embrace the chance to return the adoration. “It will have such a unique character and special atmosphere for a Rugby World Cup,” he says, “and I think one thing that international fans will notice is that the Japanese public will get behind all the teams, not just the Brave Blossoms, which is going to be great to see play out.” Borthwick says the tournament can also help the game flourish further. “This is a huge opportunity to inspire the kids to want to represent Japan,” he says. Giants beware. FIRST FRIDAY: RUGBY WORLD CUP

An evening of drinks, eats and rugby madness.  September 6  6–8pm  Winter Garden, American Bar & Grill  ¥2,160 (guests: ¥5,940); walk-ins: ¥3,240 (guests: ¥7,020)  Limit: five guests per membership  Sign up online RUGBY WORLD CUP AT TRADERS’

Make Traders’ Bar your hub for every game of rugby’s quadrennial tournament.  September 20–November 2  Details online RUGBY WORLD CUP FINAL

Catch the climax of rugby’s showcase event at an evening of drinks, buffet favorites and raffle prizes.  November 2  6–8pm  CHOP Steakhouse  ¥5,000 (guests: ¥7,000)*  Adults only  Sign up online *Prices exclude consumption tax.

Anthony Moore

Pete Juds

Jayson Vemoa

Matthew Tappenden

“If it’s not Wales [winning the tournament], then I’d like it to be Argentina. They used to be just a pure forwarddominated team but now they’ve added a lot of flair and backs play. They’re up-and-coming and can cause a shock. It’d be nice to see a nontraditional nation make it into the top eight.”

“After four years of building up their team, the Springboks came good in the recent Rugby Championship. The form, strong defense and character they showed in winning the competition against the All Blacks, Wallabies and Los Pumas leads me to think they are a good bet to lift their third World Cup in November. Go Bokke!”

“The All Blacks are part of our New Zealand culture and identity as a nation. Being consecutive world champions in 2011 and 2015 was a monumental achievement. Winning three times over 12 years is unheard of, but I’ll definitely be supporting the All Blacks for that accolade. Ka mate! Ka mate! Ka ora, ka ora!”

“Realistically, England should finish top of group C, but I’ve hedged my bets by buying tickets for both quarterfinals at Oita Stadium in case they finish second. Either game is going to be tough as we will most likely play Australia or Wales. There are no easy games at this stage of a tournament, but if you want to be world champions, you have to beat the best.”

SEPTEMBER | 27


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Learning. Love. Laughter.

General, Pediatric, and Orthodontic Dentistry with Two US-licensed Dentists

Small and intimate, in a leafy garden area only five minutes from Tokyo American Club, St. Alban’s Nursery provides each child with opportunities for learning and self-discovery in a safe, structured, loving environment. We welcome English-speaking preschoolers of all nationalities and cultures, and we focus on individuality to offer each child a wide choice of activities based on the Montessori method. — Large enclosed outdoor playground — Parents welcome at all times

• 5 minutes’ walk from TAC • Some foreign insurance accepted • Checkups and cleaning Dr. Miwako Hayashi New York University Dental School graduate Pedodontist and orthodontic training Licensed in New York, practiced in Manhattan

3-6-25 Shiba-Koen, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-0011 Tel: 090-6480-4542 | Email: gilma.yam@gol.com www.saintalbans.jp

Dr. Hirokazu Enatsu UCLA School of Dentistry graduate Licensed in California Mentor at Kois Center

United Dental Office | 2-3-8-1F Azabudai, Minato-ku 03-5570-4334 | manager@uniteddentaloffice.com www.uniteddentaloffice.com


C O M M U N I T Y | R EG I ST E R

Arrivals US A

Up Close

Frederic & Sayoko Peyrot Persol Career Co., Ltd.

Justin & April Cook PwC Consulting LLC Todd & Merete Kropp KPMG FAS Co., Ltd. Justin & Miyuki Negron i Search Worldwide K.K. Christopher Roger Stryker Japan K.K. Donald & Tami Smith Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. Brian Walton & Akiyo Kado Beacon Communications K. K. Scott & Jennifer Warren Boston Scientific Japan K.K.

AUST R A L I A Damion & Kei Howlett Orix Corporation Tzer-Han Lim Equis Bioenergy K.K.

JA PA N Takenobu & Yayoi Imaeda TMI Associates Kunihito & Sayuri Ito Verse, Inc. Tomoaki Kato Columbia University Takako & Kosuke Watanabe Paris Presse Narutoshi & Akiko Yoshida Fujimigaoka Educational Institute Yoko & Sanae Yoshii CH Global

NETHERLANDS Patrick van der Loo & Anna Verdaasdonk Pfizer Japan, Inc.

Guy Lynch Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

S O U T H KO R E A

Vanessa Terry Ad Astra V Co., Ltd.

Sun-A Kim & Yong Jun Shin Pfizer Japan, Inc.

C A N A DA

Kyoung Jin Lee & Yoon Chung Won Boston Consulting Group

Owen Mannas Loyalty Kabushiki Gaisha Joseph & Alexandra Philbrook Deloitte Tohmatsu Consulting LLC

CHINA

UK David & Alison Cave Tindall Riley (Britannia) Japan Ltd. Michael & Toni Garrett National Australia Bank

Weiwei Li & Bo Jiang Netsdl

David Kell & Nina Godoy MasterCard Japan K.K.

FRANCE

US A |

Gina & Takaaki Goto

“We have many friends who are Members of the Club, so we have often visited as guests, always being impressed by the Club’s superb services and atmosphere. We thought the Club could offer our family a chance to enjoy not only a bilingual environment, but a multicultural one. We are very excited to be a part of this community and we look forward to building networks with new friends.” (l–r) Gina, Ray and Takaaki Goto

Romain & Chloe de Laubier Boston Consulting Group

Departures Vincenzo & Kelly Alfano

David Kuo & Ellen Yang

Kenji Amino

Luis & Raquel Maia

Steven & Jamie Burger

Duane & Colleen Maier

Sean & Jennifer Clark

Chuck & Kelly Ann McKenzie

Emmanuel & Wendy Datoc

Stephen & Mary Moosbrugger

Hamish & Tammy de Freitas

Andrew & Natalie Otoo

Himanshu & Poonam Doshi

Santiago Pardo & Antonia Sanin

Russell & Sarah Fleeger

Siegfred Penaverde & Jennifer Lladoc

Jason & Rachel Freedman Leslie & William Gaudreau Pierre Gaudreault & Marie-France Paquet

Peter Pierce & Steven Sare Matthieu & Caitlyn Sauce Shuhei & Heather Sekiguchi

Brett & Anne Gerry

Stacey Simon

Kevin & Emily Gilboe

Thomas & Lynda Stepanchak

Yong Hua (Alfred) Goh & Wai San Yip

Joe & Mari Strain

Scott & Jeni Halliday

Jonathan Stuart-Smith & Rungrawee Wisetpheng

Greg & Denise Hantak

Keith Tsang & Margaret Reid

Adam & Monique Hieber

Rudolf & Michele van Houten

Naomi Hill

Nicolas & Clotilde Vassal

Shane & Sally Hunt

Michael & Julie Westmoreland

Chris Inouye & Toshiko Nishimoto

Susumu & Tomoyo Yoshida

Tamon & Sumie Ishiharazaka

Joachim Zagrosek & Kikoc Veopraseut

Anita Kariappa & Suraj Gandha Shinji Koyasu

Jay & Anita Zednik

UK |

Charles Nash & Zsanett Haraszti

Sumitomo Corporation

“We have already started to enjoy the Club, particularly the sports facilities and the summer activities. Our kids love the buffet in Rainbow Café. With the various activities on offer, the Club will no doubt be a great venue for our kids to let off steam while us parents enjoy some downtime. And while this is our second stay in Tokyo, we hope to meet other families through the Club and make the most of our time in Japan.” (l–r) Ami, Miya and Charles Nash, Zsanett Haraszti and Elliott Nash

SEPTEMBER | 29


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C O M M U N I T Y | VO I C E

Inland Sea Charm WORDS EFROT WEISS ILLUSTRATION TANIA VICEDO

M

y list of places to visit in Japan never gets shorter. The country is endlessly fascinating. This was reinforced during a recent visit to Kure and the Seto Inland Sea. I was dazzled by its beauty, history and innovative local entrepreneurs. Twenty kilometers from Hiroshima, Kure is a built on a hillside. As a port, it has a long history as a naval hub and center of shipbuilding and steel production. These maritime links are on display at the Yamato Museum, which presents the history and a model of the Yamato, the largest battleship ever built. It was ultimately sunk by US forces in April 1945. History buffs should also visit the Irifuneyama Memorial Museum, a collection of century-old buildings that include the residence of the commander of the former Kure Naval Station. Like many towns throughout a country with a rapidly declining population, Kure has been amalgamated with smaller towns nearby. As many of them are on surrounding islands, travel to them is rewarded with breathtaking vistas.

One such town is Ondo, which we reached by rickety ferry across the narrow Ondo no Seto strait. Wandering along the main street, we watched two women intently molding clay in a lovely pottery studio, sampled delicious sake at a local sake shop and admired the statue of Heian-era general Taira no Kiyomori, whose story is recounted in the Japanese classic The Tale of the Heike. Seeking shelter from the rain, we entered Tenjinan, a café and gallery with a beautiful wood interior and exquisite garden. As we sipped our luxury Mariage Frères tea, we learned that the family-run store’s focus on quality was honed during its years as a kimono shop. In 2012, on its 130th anniversary, the owner, Yuchi Kazuta, converted the space into its current incarnation. Ondo was the first of many surprises. The following morning, we visited the Shotoen Museum in Shimokamagari. The museum showcases the history of Korean diplomatic missions to Edo that stopped off here. A diorama portrays Korean officials with their Japanese attendants and there is a replica of a typical feast that would have been prepared for the foreign emissaries. Korean histo-

rians regularly visit the museum to gain insights into this period. There is also an exhibit of both Korean and Arita porcelain that rivals many Tokyo exhibitions. The drive across the next set of bridges afforded us captivating views of azure skies and deep-blue waters dotted with islands. I didn’t know places like this existed in Japan. Our destination was Mitarai, the type of quaint town that foreign visitors expect to see in Japan. Many of its buildings have been carefully restored and the main thoroughfare’s eyesore power lines have been buried. We had lunch with Akira Inoue, a Kure resident who has renovated a number of old buildings in Mitarai. He has overseen projects to convert a hospital into a hostel, a sailors’ lodging house into a teahouse and a 100-year-old ryokan inn into a restaurant and guesthouse. Kangetsuan Shintoyo has just two bedrooms and one bathroom, so perfect for a family or group of girlfriends. And its harborside location offers unrivaled views of the sea, the star of this beguiling pocket of Japan. Efrot Weiss is a Club Member.

SEPTEMBER | 31


COMMUNIT Y | HIGHLIGHTS

July 13 Team USA Meet and Greet: Archery

Would-be Olympians of Team USA’s archery squad graced the Club and posed for photos with Members ahead of a test event for next year’s Olympics. IMAGES YUUKI IDE

32 | INTOUCH


July 19–21 10th Anniversary TAC Premier Classic

The Club’s squash community welcomed Japan’s top pros for a weekend of action-packed competition for the 10th edition of this popular tournament. IMAGES YUUKI IDE

SEPTEMBER | 33


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COMMUNIT Y | HIGHLIGHTS

July 21 Hawaiian Grand Buffet

Members tucked into a spread of Polynesian delights at an aloha-inspired feast featuring dishes crafted by Ward Village’s Hawaiian chef Chris Kajioka. IMAGES KEN KATSURAYAMA

SEPTEMBER | 35


COMMUNIT Y | HIGHLIGHTS

July 23 Team USA Meet and Greet: Beach Volleyball

Three-time gold medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings and her beach volleyball teammates were the latest Team USA athletes to mix with Members at the Club. IMAGES YUUKI IDE

36 | INTOUCH


July 24 Webb Ellis Cup Visit

Ahead of the start of this month’s Rugby World Cup in Japan, Members mugged for the camera with the trophy awarded to the tournament’s last team standing. IMAGES YUUKI IDE

SEPTEMBER | 37


Forget the Year in Style Our spectacular venues, exceptional cuisine and customizable party packages will make it a memorable end to the year.

Contact our event planners today to start organizing your year-end bonenkai.

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COMMUNIT Y | HIGHLIGHTS

July 26 Countdown to Tokyo 2020

The Club kicked off its own buildup to next year’s Olympics when it will host Team USA in its role as USA House for the duration of the Games. IMAGES YUUKI IDE

SEPTEMBER | 39


COMMUNIT Y | ESCAPE

PROGRAM

INSTRUCTOR

STUDENT

Japanese Garden Walks

Kazuko Morio (pictured left)

Mesee Greene

Japan is well known for its manicured Zen gardens, but the country’s love affair with the garden runs to myriad ornamental and botanical retreats. This series of Women’s Group garden tours takes in five cultural gems, including the oldest strolling garden in Japan and an exquisite garden teahouse.

Growing up in a house with a Japanese tea garden, Kazuko Morio tended to the garden every day. She developed her horticultural interest further through study and her job as a certified national guide-interpreter. She leads both garden tours for foreign visitors and lecture tours for local tour guides.

“I have always loved nature and have visited many gardens back in the United States. These tours gave me the opportunity to see the beautiful gardens that Japan is so renowned for, and they allowed me to visit various parts of Tokyo and get the lay of the land.”

JAPANESE GARDEN WALKS  Lunch on the Pond (September 25)  Mitake Valley Stone Garden (October 2)  Oiso Seaside Gardens (October 25)  Daimyo Garden and Kagurazaka (November 21)  Kita Kamakura Zen Gardens (December 4)  Sign up online from September 5

40 | INTOUCH

KAYO YAMAWAKI

Seasonal Strolls


An Evening of Fine Taste & Music Experience some of Suntory’s finest whiskies in a unique setting at Suntory Hall, one of the most prestigious concert halls in the world.

As part of its Classic Bar in Blue Rose series, the worldrenowned Suntory Hall is inviting a select group of guests to sample three Suntory whiskies—Hibiki Blender’s Choice, Yamazaki 12 Years Old, and Ao, Suntory’s first-ever world blended whisky—while listening to a performance by the acclaimed pianist Kyoko Tabe. Held in the intimate setting of the Blue Rose at Suntory Hall, the tasting will be accompanied by hors d’oeuvres. Guests can learn the secrets behind these whiskies in a lecture by Suntory chief blender Shinji Fukuyo before the concert.

Kyoko Tabe

Shinji Fukuyo

© AKIRA MUTO

Suntory Hall, Blue Rose (Small Hall) Saturday, October 26, 8pm Seats are limited for this exclusive event. To apply: www.custom-media.com/suntory


第 四 十 七 巻 六 五 三 号   ト ウ キ ョ ウ ア メ リ カ ン ク ラ ブ 

Time for an upgrade Time for MORI LIVING An English-speaking concierge who helps you book a table at one of the city’s hottest restaurants. On-site gym and spa facilities that will help you look and feel your best. If you’re looking for long-term lease properties with a full range of services in convenient locations around Tokyo, it’s time to upgrade to MORI LIVING.

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TOKYO AMERIC AN CLUB SEPTEMBER 2019

Trophy Hunt Japan makes host history with Asia’s first Rugby World Cup

INTOUCH

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TOKYO AMERIC AN CLUB

毎 月 一 回 一 日 発 行 

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SEPTEMBER 2019

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Profile for Tokyo American Club

September 2019 INTOUCH Magazine  

Tokyo American Club's Monthly Member Magazine

September 2019 INTOUCH Magazine  

Tokyo American Club's Monthly Member Magazine

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