THE FCCJ SPIRIT FUTSAL team emerged with a 100 percent record in their series of five matches against politicians and bureaucrats on May 23. The Club team lost every game.

The carefully selected FCCJ squad — that all-important mix of elderly, the walking wounded and the not-very-good — had appeared in a confident mood at the outset. By the time the warm-up ended, however, a good number of the players — understandably left out of their respective nations’ World Cup squads — were wheezing and puffing.

The shaven-headed trio of Captain Andy Sharp, Mark Austin and Toru Fujioka initially appeared to strike fear into the politicians’ team, which included LDP members Ichiro Aizawa, Akimasa Ishikawa and Yutaka Komatsu, along with a bunch of fit and skilled ringers from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. Toshi Maeda and FCCJ General Manager Tomohiko Yanagi both demonstrated a remarkable turn of pace and trickery, while Nathalie Stucky was calm and composed in the middle of the pitch.

Goalkeeper Shinichi Nakajima performed heroics in keeping the waves of political attackers at bay, ably assisted by the imposing figure of Tetsuo Jimbo. Julian Ryall wandered around aimlessly at the back and complained incessantly about various body parts hurting.

After permitting the politicians to record their victories, the team, managed by Koji Ogawa, went on to a post-match meal and drinks at a nearby restaurant.

Encouraged by the suggestion that the FCCJ players can only get better, Captain Sharp threw his considerable weight behind the proposal that futsal training sessions become a weekly event.

—Julian Ryall

Heard at the Club

“Because the mainstream media avoids covering corruption in the police system, it seems I have a monopoly on this kind of reporting. Over the past 25 years, in fact, my reporting activities have led to over 100 police officers either being punished, summarily dismissed or forced to resign.”


The Swadesh DeRoy Scholarship, awarded annually by the FCCJ, was created to encourage and support university students interested in entering journalism.

Left; Guest of Alexandra Juhasz, Akira Nagakura (committee member), Martin Fackler (key-note speaker), Elliot Silverberg, Alexandra Juhasz, Allison Kwesell, Suvendrini Kakuchi (committee member) and Masaaki Fukunaga (chair).

Left to right, Alexandra Juhasz, winner of Pen Prize, with Martin Fackler (of the New York Times); Elliot Silverberg, winner of Pen Prize; Allison Kwesell, winner of Photo Prize, with Suvendrini Kakuchi

TAMZIN BOOTH is the current Tokyo bureau chief of the Economist. She joined the publication in 2001, where she worked as finance correspondent and media editor in London before being posted to Paris in 2008 as European business editor. Prior to The Economist, she was a staff writer at the Wall Street Journal Europe and Institutional Investor Magazine. From 1995 to 1998 she worked in Hong Kong as an equity research associate for Salomon Brothers. Her interests include literature, current affairs, sailing and skiing.

MATHEW SMITH is senior editor at Engadget. He was relocated from London to cover major consumer tech companies and research projects in Japan and the rest of Asia. He worked in Sendai as part of the JET program, then became a journalist, doing freelance work for both the Guardian and the Times. He also took up judo during his time in Sendai, and managed to earn his black belt before returning to the UK.

Mike De Jong, Paradigm
Ryusaku Tanaka, Tanaka Ryusaku Journal
Takeo Sato, Freelance
Takayuki Yasui, Asahi Shimbun
Tomoko Sato, TBS Television, Inc.
Yoshiko Miwa, Denno Neko Yashiki Co., Ltd.
Kenji Oikawa, France 10

Christian Howes, Merill Lynch Japan Securities Co., Ltd.
Wolter A. Veenhoven, Hastex International K. K.

Osamu Funatsu, Bain Capital
Tatsuya Kuji, Kuji Sekkei
Takeshi Hara
Kazuyuki Okada, DLS Trading Inc.
Tokio Mitsuda, Marcura Japan K. K.
Shigeru Nishimura, Nishimura AQ Industries Co., Ltd.
Soichiro Iida, Chiba Iida Farm
Rie Sakamoto, UBIC Inc.
Kiyohiko Toyama, New Komeito Party
Takeshi Yokoyama, Take Off
Kazushige Kasakura, AOI International Co., Ltd.
Tatsuo Kawasaki, Unison Capital, Inc.


Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival
David Pilling Penguin Books Ltd. Gift from David Pilling

Making Tea, Making Japan: Cultural Nationalism in Practice
Kristin Surak Stanford University Press Gift from Kristin Surak

Big Data to Mito Shiko: Mondai Hakken Noryoku to Kaiketsu no Noho
Shuhei Aida Sangokan Gift from Shuhei Aida

The Republic of China Yearbook 2013
The Executive Yuan The Executive Yuan Gift from the publisher

Attacks on the Press 2014 Edition: Journalism on the World's Front Lines
Committee to Protect Journalists Bloomberg Press Gift from the publisher

Janarizumu no kihan to riron: shinraisei o kakuho suru tameni
Hiroshi Fujita; Kazuo Abiko Japan Press Research Institute Gift from Kazuo Abiko

Japan Company Handbook: Spring 2014
Toyo Keizai, Inc. Toyo Keizai, Inc.

Abortion before Birth Control: The Politics of Reproduction in Postwar Japan
Tiana Norgren Princeton University Press