Episode 5: Voluntary Insanity, Part 1
This is part one of a two-part interview with Jamie El-Banna, founder of the volunteer group, It’s Not Just Mud ("INJM" to its friends). Jamie tells us about how he decided to come to Japan one day over lunch, his personal experiences during the aftermath of the Tohoku earthquake, and how he was inspired to spend the next three years as the head of his own disaster relief non-profit organization (NPO). Jamie also reveals some of the inner workings of the Japanese government and culture, including the surprising truth about Japanese fishermen and Twitter.
The Midnight Brew: “Voluntary Insanity, Part 1"
Episode 5 (November 22, 2014)
Show Notes for this Episode
Links of Interest:
- The Japanese Peace Boat home page.
- What Jamie was referring to when he said “Post-Kobe”: The Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake of 1995.
- You heard it right! Costco exists in Japan.
- While Google Maps seems to no longer have the before-and-after satellite images of the Tohoku tsunami, the New York Times does have a good gallery here.
This week’s Midnight Brew trivia fact: the majority of users on Twitter are retired Japanese fishermen exchanging pictures of food porn.
It’s all completely obvious to anyone who has mastered a reasonable level of Japanese. For example, understanding the difference between “bonsai” (a tiny, immaculately manicured tree); “banzai” (an exclamation meaning, “May the emperor live a thousand years!”); and “Bandai", a popular Japanese toy manufacturer responsible for the original concept that became known world-wide as “The Transformers”.
The Midnight Brew's theme music was composed by the talented folks over at musicincloud.com.