JAPAN PHOTOS by Philbert Ono

*Be sure to wear a mask when in crowds.

Last additions - 1998 Winter Olympics
Seat backs and ad stickersThe train's seat backs had advertising stickers. When the Nagano Shinkansen reaches a terminal station (Tokyo and Nagano), the seats can turn around by itself? One thing less to do by the train's cleaning ladies.Jan 26, 2006
Nagano ShinkansenThe Nagano shinkansen has a duckbill snout.Jan 26, 2006
During the Olympics, the morning trains from Tokyo were always crowded. However, the last trains from Nagano to Tokyo were almost empty.Jan 26, 2006
Ad sticker on tray tableJan 26, 2006
A four-man bobsled.Jan 26, 2006
Amway at Tokyo StationAmway shows the way to the Nagano Shinkansen platform for people getting off the Narita Express train which comes from Narita Airport.Jan 26, 2006
An elderly couple are among a crowd of people who watched the men's hockey finals on the TV set.Jan 26, 2006
Postcard set (400 yen)Jan 26, 2006
Tokyo Station: Official postersThese were painted by Koji Kinutani and plastered everywhere in Tokyo Station. These were being sold to the public for about Y5,000. Jan 26, 2006
Yaesu underground mall: Speed skater outfits made by MizunoMizuno, an official sponsor, set up a nice Olympics exhibition in the Yaesu underground mall at Tokyo Station. There was a nice photo exhibit of past and current Winter Games and a souvenir shop as well. These three photos show part of Mizuno's exhibition.

A few speed skater outfits made by Mizuno. You may recognize the suits for China, Japan, and the USA.
Jan 26, 2006
Tokyo StationJan 26, 2006
Recycle bins by Coca-colaJan 26, 2006
Even official Olympics miso pasteWould you believe the official miso? Hanamaruki Foods of Nagano was an official supplier for the Nagano Winter Games. Miso soup must have been a staple item for breakfast (and dinner) at the Olympic Village. I found this at my local supermarket.Jan 26, 2006
Olympics logo on official film (not FujiFilm)Kodak was the official Olympics film in a country where 70 percent of the film market belongs to Fuji Film. It must have been sweet revenge for Kodak because Fuji Film was the official film at the Los Angeles Olympics in 1984. Kodak has been the official film sponsor for all Olympic Games since then. It will also be the official film for the Sydney Games in the year 2000.Jan 26, 2006
Olympics logo on official drinksBesides Coke, Coca-Cola also makes Aquarius (sports drink) and Georgia canned coffee. The Olympics logo and "Nagano 1998" figure prominently on the limited-edition cans. On the Aquarius can, notice the image of a speed skater. On the back of the Georgia coffee can, see the image of the torch relay runner. Georgia coffee was prominently advertised during the nationwide Olympic torch relay to Nagano. Jan 26, 2006
English programme (1,800 yen)Jan 26, 2006
Key chain (1,000 yen)Jan 26, 2006
IBM pins (my collection)The IBM pins were being sold for 1,000 yen each. Some people were selling them for up to 2,000 yen.Jan 26, 2006
Palm-size stuffed Snowlet (official mascot)Jan 26, 2006
Tokyo Station Olympics souvenir shopThis little space (operated by official sponsor Mizuno) in the Yaesu underground mall at Tokyo Station used to have shelves full of Olympic souvenirs. On the day before the Olympics, I saw that they were selling towels, T-shirts, sweatshirts, jackets, mugs, postcards, Snowlets, key chains, and other things. I visited this place again on the last day of the Olympics (when I took this photo) and found a sign saying that they had sold out of Olympics souvenirs. According to the clerk, most were sold out about a week before.They only had a single rack selling expensive framed Olympic prints. The story was the same for the Snowlets House in Nagano and the Tokyo Branch at Mitsukoshi Dept. Store in Nihonbashi. I'm glad I bought my souvenirs early on.Jan 26, 2006
Fruit gelato standFruit gelato storefront with national flags and "Welcome to Nagano" signs.Jan 26, 2006
"Official No. 1 Pin Club" ShopShop selling Olympic pins. Prices ranged from 500 yen to 4,000 yen.Jan 26, 2006
The road from Nagano Station to Zenkoji Temple.Lots of Olympics advertising.Jan 26, 2006
PolicemanPoliceman in special uniform designed just for the Nagano Games. The uniform supposed to make them look more friendly.Jan 26, 2006
Souvenir shop"Japanese dress Kimono and so on." Awkward or mistaken English is nothing new in Japan. They should've used a Japanese-flag motif instead.Jan 26, 2006
Olympics auction hosted by Emi Watanabe (left), a former Olympic figure skater.Jan 26, 2006
Pin sellerThis American woman was selling pins in Nagano at her seventh Olympics. Olympic pins proved to be very popular among the Japanese.

Apparently there are pin sellers who travel to all the Olympics and major sports events making a living as a pin vendor.
Jan 26, 2006
IBM billboard busesThe decals covering the window portion of the decals have little holes in them and from the inside of the bus, the decals are transparent. IBM's Olympic pins and jacket were also based on these bus decal designs.Jan 26, 2006
Local busThis was not a "wrap" bus, but it still had a Kirin ad (made of cloth) on the front.Jan 26, 2006
More billboard busesCoca-cola adorned some of the local city buses in Nagano.Jan 26, 2006
Game ends with USA scoring 10 goals and Japan zero.The final score was 10-0. Japan went on to lose all five of their matches and the US team went undefeated for the gold medal. The US and Canadian men's hockey teams were not the only ones who were put to shame at Nagano.

Japan's women's ice hockey team must feel pretty rotten about their pitiful playing on their home turf.
Jan 26, 2006
Japan team mates try to comfort the goal keeper right after the US scores.Jan 26, 2006
Kids gathered at Nagano Station.Jan 26, 2006
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Total winners beat the total losers...The U.S. team went on undefeated to win the first Olympic gold medal in women's ice hockey. Japan lost all five of its matches (they scored a total of 2 goals) putting them in last place among the six women's hockey teams.Jan 26, 2006
Japan's goalie takes a break at Nagano Winter Olympics women's ice hockey match.Her helmet is dotted with Print Club photo stickers.Jan 26, 2006
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Nagano Winter Olympics women's ice hockey match.Jan 26, 2006
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Face to face. Japan's goal keeper was busy, busy, busy.Jan 26, 2006
Frenzy in front of Japan's goal.Jan 26, 2006
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Nagano Winter Olympics women's ice hockey match.Jan 26, 2006
Resurfacing the ice during intermissionJan 26, 2006
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5-0 on scoreboard during 1st period.In the 1st period, the scoreboard shows 5-0 in favor of the US.Jan 26, 2006
Resurfacing the ice during intermissionJan 26, 2006
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A US player scores and celebrates to the dismay of Japan.Jan 26, 2006
A US player scores and celebrates to the dismay of Japan.Jan 26, 2006
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A US player scores and celebrates to the dismay of Japan.Jan 26, 2006
Banging the glassI liked it when the puck slammed into the glass (BOOM!) in front of me. The protective glass, by the way, must have been at least an inch thick.Jan 26, 2006
The Nippon team huddles.The Nippon team huddle and psych themselves up before the start of the game.Jan 26, 2006
The crowd behind me.Jan 26, 2006
Start of gameJan 26, 2006
My Japanese and American flagsI tacked the flags onto the glass and proudly displayed them in front of my seat behind the goal. That's what you do when you love both countries. Since I was sitting at rinkside behind the goal, the flags (and my face and camera) could be seen on the TV broadcast.

On the left of the photo, you can see the goal referee who was sitting in a glass box. She wrapped herself in a blanket. As you can expect, the place was not warm like a coffee shop.
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Cheering section for Yuiko SatomiCollege cheering section for Yuiko Satomi, a defense player for Japan.Jan 26, 2006
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Aqua Wing ice hockey rinkMost of the women's ice hockey matches were held at a stadium called Aqua Wing which is actually an indoor swimming pool with a sliding roof. It seemed like we were in a huge oil drum cut in half.Jan 26, 2006
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Aqua WingJan 26, 2006
Kita Nagano StationTo get to Aqua Wing, the ice hockey rink, we had to take a local train from Nagano Station for a short ride to the next stop at Kita Nagano Station. This Kita Nagano Station was a tiny little train station certainly not meant for large crowds. It was unbelievably small. It took some minutes before we could get out of the station which was not much larger than a normal living room. The door was also small, enough for only two people to get out at one time.Jan 26, 2006
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Aqua Wing ice hockey rinkJan 26, 2006
Jamaica's bobsled team in Kodak PavilionThey introduced Jamaica's bobsled team. They are very popular in Japan, largely due to the comedy movie "Cool Running" which was aired in Japan before the Nagano Games started.Jan 26, 2006
Snowlets House, ticket availabilityJan 26, 2006
Kodak's Kodak-yellow pavilionOn the day I went in, they introduced Jamaica's bobsled team. They are very popular in Japan, largely due to the comedy movie "Cool Running" which was aired in Japan before the Nagano Games started.Jan 26, 2006
Snowlets HouseIt was packed. This is part of the checkout line. There were four checkout lines and each one was about 30 meters long. The line went pretty fast though. They had all kinds of souvenirs: T-shirts, sweatshirts, flags, postcards, pins, key chains, necklaces, stuffed Snowlets, mugs, and even jewelry. I went on the 6th day of the Games and it still had everything well in stock. But I later heard that the shelves were laid bare well before the Games ended. Jan 26, 2006
Entrance to Snowlets House at Olympic Plaza.The official store for Olympic souvenirs. There were a lot of ticket scalpers (all foreigners) hanging around the entrance. Inside, there was a ticket counter for events which still had seats.Jan 26, 2006
Pavilion by Kirin Brewery.Notice the "wrap" bus passing in front. Jan 26, 2006
Olympic PlazaSnowlets House and Kodak's pavilion behind it.Jan 26, 2006
To Olympic PlazaJan 26, 2006
Nagano Station, East Exit to Olympic PlazaAt the East Exit of Nagano Station, this bridge, lined with advertising banners, led the way to the Olympic Plaza which featured ten tent pavilions made by official sponsors.Jan 26, 2006
JR Nagano Station festooned with Olympic logos.Jan 26, 2006
Welcome sign at Nagano StationJan 26, 2006
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