BACK TO XI MEN DING

Whether it’s for the bus, ramen, Bape, or the heck of it, Japan is hands down the country of long lines.  That is until I came across this line outside Xi Men Ding Starbucks.  Starbucks???

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Xi Men Ding is the staple of urban culture and graffiti in Taipei complete with that feeling of raw energy and physical imperfection.  It’s Harajuku over a decade ago before the money started pouring in. 

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I hung out with Bobo, an inspiration to a lot of young writers and his partner Colasa, a stencil graffiti artist with a dark edge.  These days they run Citymarx and work closely with the government on legal walls and enrichment programs.

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After I left Citymarx, it started to rain…

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then came the downpour.

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Gave CHEK a call and he was in the area so we met up.

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I followed CHEK to a shop that was closed with the shutter pulled down.  Turned out to be UNITY after he shouted for them to open up.  They were having a meeting upstairs while we chatted in the back of their office.  CHEK is hardcore with a “don’t give a shit” attitude but he told me he lost his passion for bombing after a bad run in with a gang that resulted in brain surgery.  Hope things get better.

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