watch her program on NHK, from 22:15 to 23:15 tonight, live talk show with the ex-editor of LEON magazine.
Tomorrow Kurara will attend this cricket event to raise money & awereness for young children with cancer.
Mimi So arranged a surprise party for Kurara the day after the Miss Universe Pageant to celebreate her 2 place. Lots’ of Japanese peole were invited in her home with champagne and applauds. Kurara was very touched and honored to have a party specially for her on the very famous RODEO DRIVE.
Thank you Mimi, you are so sweet! AND……….Come to see us in Japan soon!
INES & kURARA
Sawa Kurotani Special to The Daily Yomiuri
The samurai-inspired costume that Kurara-san wore during the Miss Universe contest is a bold move to appeal to the global taste for kitschy-cute. Her costume, which Japanese observers have quickly named aka-ninja, or “red ninja,” is, basically, a bright red minidress that looks like a warrior’s armor, with the sides of her short “skirt” split open to show off her shapely legs. She wore this dress with a pair of bright-red platform sandals, and her hair tightly pulled back in a ponytail. And to kick up the costume’s impact a notch, Kurara-san pulled out and pointed a long sword at the audience when she went onstage.
It is an anime-esque mix of “Japanese” components (armor, sword) pasted onto a basically Western costume (minidress, platform sandals) and ambiguous gender-coding (color red and skin exposure connote the feminine, while armor and sword represent the masculine). They add up to a sort of hybrid look that is “Lara-Croft-Meets-Kunoichi (or female ninja) on Takeshita Street.”
This costume–for which Kurara-san won the Best National Costume Award–has upset the more traditionally minded but was a big hit among the international and younger Japanese audience. The vast majority of young Japanese bloggers understand this outfit as a strategic choice to appeal to how Japan and Japaneseness are perceived in the contemporary world, and appreciates it–correctly so, I believe–as a form of kosupure, in which no identity is taken literally, and in which the meaning of being a “Japanese woman” is up for interpretation of the most playful sort.
It is tempting to fall back on traditionalist thinking and dismiss the novel aesthetic move as “weird” and “embarrassing.” But Japan has changed, along with the world around it, and it is inevitable that the symbol of Japan and its relationship to the world should also change. As a symbol, Kurara-san in her aka-ninja costume accomplishes something that a Miss Japan in furisode can’t: It embodies playfulness and global appeal, which are the very essence of nouveau Japanesque.
Kurotani is an associate professor of anthropology and director of Asian studies at the University of Redlands in California.
(Sep. 14, 2006)
Read the all-thing at http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/dy/features/language/20060914TDY15001.htm
Photo with my little one Luca Kei, early morning cruising the streets around our hotel in Causeway Bay.
Super News program
Sept. 8 this evening (16:55-19:00)