krash japan

KURASHIKI CAFFS

Yutaka Akahoshi

Krash Eyes

倉敷に吹く風

There was a mayoral election in Kurashiki last April. Against projections shared by many, Ms. Kaori Ito (age 42), a former Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications officer serving as Treasurer for the City of Kurashiki, beat the incumbent Mayor Mr. Kenzo Furuichi (age 60) for the office. She became the first female mayor of the Chugoku and Shikoku region. While I would very much like to congratulate her in person, I have yet to make her acquaintance; and I doubt I ever will.

At about the same time, young Barack Obama, advocator of “reformation,” is the presumed presidential candidate of the Democratic Party in the U.S. He won out over Hilary Clinton. It appears that citizens of both the U.S. and Kurashiki anticipate new winds of changes. Needless to say, a female mayor assuming office in Kurashiki does not affect our publication. The same is true if Obama is elected president. I will simply continue issuing one volume after another, as I’ve always done.

The announcement made in the previous Vol. 6 that “KJ intends to end at Vol. 10” was met with unexpectedly strong responses. “Are you really going to end?” asked many of the e-mails I received. There were more than a few voicing that they were ”saddened” or “disappointed.” As Editor-in-Chief, such comments were quite an honor, and the feeling that I’ve hit the right button made me feel content. There were misunderstandings, too. “KJ to discontinue after Vol. 10” was an expression I found on the net. Perhaps I wasn’t quite clear with my words. Let me take this opportunity to clarify this for the second time: KJ will end at Vol. 10. However, it will not be discontinued──it will be complete.

KJ had a “complete in 10 issues” scenario from day one of its publication. There are several reasons. The characteristic of the magazine, which is not an informational publication, is one. My nature, which cannot stick to one thing for long, is another big reason. Even greater are my hopes of not continuing to publish from sheer force of habit. I do not find meaning in publishing a magazine created without being able to think of what to feature on the next issue or how to present a topic with joy, but is created as if one squeezes out the last drop of water from a cloth that is already wrung.

Now, having past the halfway point, I think this style of publication, limited in number, was successful in maintaining tension both on the publisher and the publication itself. It does not have to be a strong wind. Just a constant gust of wind that blows through Kurashiki. Such is the hope I entrust in “Krash japan.”