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Extra shaky UK travel memories

The last time the duck and I posted a video about one of our adventures on here, I mentioned that we were having trouble with our usual editing process. We were in a state of “meaning to look into other software and workflows” for two years. Finally, last month, when we reminisced about our delicious bento lunch, the duck and I did it; we reviewed some of our earliest video footage from a time when the duck was still whispering nocturnal messages about moving to Japan and starting a blog in my ear, and our tiny camera of choice was especially susceptible to my shaky camera work. And we finally (somewhat) familiarized ourselves with this editing software that’s been sitting on our computer, untouched, for a good year. Since we are lazy and masterful procrastinators, it took us most of this past week to finish about 80% of this video so that it would be ready today. We spread around 5% of the work over the summer and decided to save the remaining 15% for another project. You should always leave room for improvement, you know. So, today the duck and I present an edit of some footage from that fateful trip that solidified our plans to live in Japan for a while, planted the seed in our minds that we might want to try taking up jogging one last time… a few years later, started the duck’s fascination with trains, and gave us our (possibly our) first bento memory- all in less than a half week! We had a few bonus adventures after that. But for now, the duck and I are happy that we have some sort of video to share today:

After working on this for quite a bit longer than the end result suggests, the duck and I are surprised the footage wasn’t as terrible as we had remembered (or that our powerful editing software was able to salvage a lot of it). And we’re excited about next night’s absolutely restful sleep. Oh, the joys of being master procrastinators!

Have a wonderful day, everyone! We know we will!

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After some more walking… in Akita

Oh my gosh, you guys! It happened! The duck and I have decided to finally resurface after our prolonged absence that was a fun mix of extreme laziness and working on this last (at least in a while) Japan video that has taken us so much longer to edit than all the other ones, partly because our wonderful microphone decided to be even more dramatic and rebellious than usual by recording so irregularly that we couldn’t even fix it in post (or maybe I’m just incompetent, or maybe it’s a mixture of the both) which meant re-recording the voice-over over and over for it to be at least somewhat consistent. My hereditary inability to properly enunciate at times did not make this any easier, neither did the duck’s conviction that “one should only reveal one’s voice once a certain degree of fame is reached” (yeah, whatever).
Anyway, after giving up on having perfect sound (I hope it’s not too intrusive), we actually did finish editing this video and can now finally add some movement to our Akita photo sessions and that wonderful oshiruko that we had a while back. So, sit back and enjoy another installment of Sometimes My Camera Work Is Particularly Shaky.

That’s the video. I hope you enjoyed our little Japan adventure video diaries and can’t wait to go back to the duck and my days of complete laziness.
Actually, we’ll do that right now.
Buh-bye!

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Climbing Mt. Takao in spring

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? The duck and I have been enjoying our (way too hot) summer and just could not escape this mean heat-induced laziness that kept us from updating our blog… until a few days ago, that is, when we finally decided to tackle all that extra-shaky footage we got during our climb up Mt. Takao back in early spring. Because it was the middle of the popular sakura season, that one short week that makes everyone pack their picnic sheets or don their hiking gear, the mountain was pretty crowded for a weekday and we even got to follow a TV crew around (can you find them in the video?) that, same as the duck and me, thought that climbing Tokyo’s resident mountain with a few trees that were blooming in pretty shades of white and pink along the way was even cooler and totally smart when you wish death upon all the evil pollen! Anyway, I’ll quit the rambling now and finally present to you this one video that the duck and I were not sure would ever come to see the light of day :

This time we decided to go back to our first two videos and spare you the weird rambling that graces the more recent ones. I hope you appreciate that, hahahahahah!

That shall be it for now.

Too. Much. Typing… Can’t. Move. My. Fingers!
Cramppppppppppppppppppp

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“An afternoon in Kichijoji” is NOT the title of our video

This post concludes our little Kichijoji series that we started over a month ago but didn’t get to continue due to unforeseen circumstances (of laziness).
A few (ehehe) weeks ago, before we were even thinking about cherry blossoms, the duck and I spent an afternoon wandering around this pretty neighborhood, accompanied by my loyal camera and weak arms. Actually, this video is a contribution to the Wandering Bard – a wonderful project that I can highly recommend checking out!
Now, feast your eyes on our beautiful, characteristically shaky, camera work and your ears on those weird mumbles that I’m considering sparing you from in the future, at least in the next video or so (you’re welcome):

We hope you liked this most recent manifestation of our weirdness and are looking forward to welcoming you to our next moving picture (in the least glorious sense possible) in another three months or so, hahahahaha!

Your movie stars,

the duck and I

Ducktectives in Action: Solving Tokyo’s Underground Mysteries

That should be our new tag line! Because, even when we’re not actively trying to solve puzzles, we are constantly trying to debunk the mysteries of life in Tokyo (and acting like normal human and duck-y(?) beings). However, this is not what this story is about.
This story is about the former: solving puzzles – and I’m writing professional ones, almost like the ones solved by real literary detectives! To be honest, as a kid I wanted to become a detective and solve exciting cases like the infamous Sherlock Holmes and his not so well-known great-grandniece Shirley Holmes; in fact, in 5th grade I wrote my first play – a very badly structured murder (non-)mystery; and a year later I started my very own detective club with two friends – we had a cool logo but not a single case. As I grew older I found out that being a detective isn’t as adventurous as I had always imagined it to be because, strangely, most real-world detectives don’t seem to emit gangster pheromones that mysteriously attract criminals the way Detective Conan does, so I gave up my dream of becoming a detective and, instead, solved crimes and puzzles vicariously through Holmes, Dupin, Monk, Conan, Professor Layton, and their puzzle-solving pals.

Ducktective - ready to solve riddles!

When the duck and I, on one of our fun subway journeys, discovered an ad for the Tokyo Metro Underground Mysteries, an exciting game that sends you through central Tokyo solving puzzles, our Sherlock-sense began to tingle; we quickly assembled the Shinjuku City Pals (our Baker Street Boys) and set off on an all-day mystery adventure through some of Tokyo’s Metro stations: Continue reading

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Seeing off Autumn in Kyoto

Now that we’re in the middle of winter and constantly complaining about the cold, the duck and I thought that it’s the perfect time to look back on our little trip to Kyoto back in December (where it was also freezing, but at least it was still fall). Of course we took my camera with us to document all the pretty sights we were sure we would come across. And I’m super glad we did because now we can share all those pretty things we got to see with everyone who has found their way onto this blog:

The camera work is still pretty shaky, but editing this filled me with so much joy (this is definitely my favorite video editing adventure on this blog so far – well, it was, until it took me two days to figure out how to export the video with kinda decent audio levels) because autumn is the duck and my favorite season and autumn in Kyoto with wonderful company adds at least three extra layers of awesome on top of our love for it (and all its food)!
But, man, Kyoto sure was cold! And, even though we did miss the peak of the autumn leaves (紅葉) which, we thought, would leave us with fewer tourists because the very keen would have come in November, we learned a valuable lesson during our trip:

In Kyoto it’s always peak season!

That’s unbeleafable!