Kameoka Diaries #3 — Midwestern Conflict

For those that missed them:

Part One: Self-Introduction
Part Two: Friends

And here’s Part Three:

The Kameoka Diaries: Volume One, collecting the first eight parts, is available in HD for $1:
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[ Click here to buy as a DRM-free PDF ]

Also available is The Kameoka Diaries: Part Two, collecting parts 9-16:
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[ Click here to buy as a DRM-free PDF ]

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Continue on the Part Four

  • Tori

    It’s so not part of the Midwest.

  • Hahaha…
    These strips are great. I never noticed how crazy we foreigners look in those texts. My wife assures me that to her Japanese eyes they don’t look crazy just “strong.”
    I also asked her about the shoulder thing. She insists that it’s not true. She illustrated this by pointing out that she wears tank tops all the time but wouldn’t be caught dead in a mini skirt. I had to admit she had a point, but who knows. I mean, she is married to me, a maniacally grinning foreigner, so other Japanese people probably think she is a slut.

  • Laughed out loud at the textbook manipulations. Great work man.

  • Lars Martinson

    Thanks for the comments, guys!
    Victor: hm, maybe on the mini skirt/shoulder thing I overstated the case a bit. Guess I’ll have to wait til it gets warmer to see if the theory holds up to scrutiny. (Not too many short sleeves this time of year either way!)

  • Nice stuff Lars-ification, i like these strips a lot. The mini skirt/shoulder thing is accurate i think – at least in Kyushu. Or maybe the ‘mini skirt/breasts thing’ is more accurate. Here girls wear mini skirts very often, but very seldom show off much from the top half. Why this would be is very interesting, it appears paradoxical – why a dramatic display of one aspect, but not the other? Of course the main functional reason is just falling fashion, but what is the underlying reason? Omoshiroi, ne.

  • Steve M

    Actually, the whole idea of Midwest is rather odd. I think it is based on a bunch of colonialists who thought anything not part of the original 13 colonies was west. If we use the Mississippi River, which is about in the middle of the country, as the dividing line, then Minnesota would be Midwest, and Wisconsin would be Mideast ;-)

    Oh, and I’ve been to Oklahoma. The part I saw was totally cows and cowboys – definitely Southwest.

  • Ashley G.

    I haven’t laughed that hard in a while. Besides being just downright funny (I’d never noticed how maniacal all the foreigners looked in Sunshine) I was not fooled by your name changes as I know your friends. Which just made it that. much. better.

    Can’t wait to see what comes next!

  • trent w

    great great great . i know as a minnesotan that you are a vikings fan!!! as a wisconsinite your just a sad packers fan . But in oklahoma you just simply like to ride bulls. Me as an ohioan that had a sad face printed on our state would have to agree that i like to look at shoulders and short skirts lol…. i will once again say wonderful larz

  • tats

    I laughed a lot when I read your speculations of the differences of the descriptions between Japanese people and foreigners in the textbook. Foreigners there look hyperactive. Herge, the creator of Tin Tin should have drawn them instead. Looking forward to the next one.

  • Charlie

    I’ve always thought of Oklahoma as one of the Great Plains states, along with Kansas, Nebraska and the Dakotas above it.

    My definition of the Midwest was always sort of limited to the states that had schools in the original Big 10 Conference (Penn State and Nebraska don’t count, as numbers 11 and 12 added later).

    Also, there is apparently a whole community of people out there who argue about such things – the NY Times has a blog called “Borderlines” addressing similar topics, and one of the recent entries was about defining what exactly constitutes “Europe.” Good luck with that.

    BTW, I really enjoy your work. One of my wife’s friends did the JET program like you, and your comics provide entertaining insight into what that experience must be like.

  • proof
  • Filippo Mare

    Foreigners depicted as devils is a pearl!
    My next step is try to get a copy of your former book Young men of a c.m. even if I don’t live in NORTH AMERICA.. I’ll wake up my American friends to help
    Thank you for free publishing all of these.
    Ciao from Milan, Northern Italy… or it’s Southern Europe?

  • Lars Martinson

    Thanks for all the comments, everyone! (^O^)/
    I finished the script for the next installment and have started drawing it, so should have it up in… two weeks, maybe? I’m trying to find a balance between working on these and working on Tonoharu…

  • Walt

    These are great. Still looking for the next installment of Tonoharu.

  • Check out what this dude has to say about selling comics for e-readers. http://danidraws.com/2010/09/27/digital-comics/

  • Becky

    Love it! I`ve been arguing with my fellow students about how many continents there are…..turns out that in lots of parts of the world, the Americas are considered to be 1 continent. No one can explain, though, why the Americas, joined by a tiny isthmus that has a canal cutting it in half, are one continent, while Europe and Asia, with no reasonable dividing line, are considered separate. We don`t have that many discussions about US geography, since I`m the only one here with any opinions on the subject…..though I discovered that a good way to get South Americans riled up is to refer to yourself as an アメリカ人。Works every time.

  • Tom O

    I really enjoyed your comic, especially seeing the text book – Sunshine. Oh that Yuki and her naan! And her maniacal friends. As for what is Midwest battle – as a native Nebraskan I know that feeling. I would say the eastern half is farm-land like Iowa, but then it becomes desolate and rocky on the western side. There’s actually a term for our area called “high plains.”

  • LQ

    Yeah, I’m from Missouri and was shocked to find out that many people don’t consider it the midwest. Well, we raise the same crops as the canonical midwestern states — not tobacco, rice, or cotton. We don’t have southern accents. We look more toward Chicago than Dallas. So … midwestern, in my opinion. But yeah, the plains terminology needs to get more airtime.

    Anyway, teaching ESL elsewhere I’ve watched similar arguments happen, between two Korean students over whether a Korean river was a river or a tributary, between two Indian students over whether a certain practice was religious or cultural, etc. Being away from home — what a trip!

    (sorry, love my oyaji gags.)

  • Cassie

    Well, I know Matilda very well, i love how you describe her personality perfectly in the previous one, and i agree, Oklahoma is southl.

  • Have any of you ever heard of Midwest City, Oklahoma?

  • Peter

    Many people here in the Northeast seem to consider any state that doesn’t touch the Atlantic or Pacific ocean “The Midwest”.

    These are great, Lars—thanks for putting them up.

  • Haha !! You’re so right!! All the characters in the “Eigo Note” ALWAYS do the devil sign!! It’s on almost every page!
    By the way,my name’s Emile,i’m living in Fukuoka as well and run a webcomic too.
    We should link up or something,if that’s ok with you.
    Anyway,you’re the shit Lars,keep it up !!

  • jam

    They are right about Texas! It either defies definition, or it’s part of the Southwest. But “the South” is Mississippi… Georgia… all those.

  • When I wore sleeveless shirts in Japan it really created a stir. I’m such a modest dresser and that was probably the only time anyone thought I approached the risque.

  • Lindsey

    I’m from Texas and we don’t consider ourselves “Southerners”. Some folks do, but mostly we just consider ourselves “Texans”. Weird, I know.

    But, now that I live in Australia, we’re all “Yanks” anyway. :)

  • Chris

    late to the party; i’m a native okie. I think Oklahoma culturally is sort of a mashup of several american regions: the south, the midwest, appalachia, and the southwest.

  • Southern Larry

    If it helps, as someone who spent most of his life in the South (NC, SC, AL, and mostly GA), the South is defined as the place where, if you sit down at a restaurant, they ask you if you want water or iced tea, and sometimes they’ll call it sweet tea if they think you don’t know that’s what you’re going to get. Also, no one looks at you weird if you want grits, and fried chicken means fried chicken (not chicken-fried chicken, whatever the hell that is)

    By that definition, Texas is not the South (I live now in Austin), except maybe some of its eastern portions. Oklahoma is definitely not the South.