About Doc &
A little about me…
I research: I'm quite certain you'll not find a more fervent digger than me. I've been finding my Mom's buried earrings, dusty archival research for the History Channel, and leads galore for companies for decades now. Try me. If it exists, I can find it.
I'm a connector: I love nothing more in the world than introducing people to solutions, and other people who can make a difference in their lives. If you're looking for introductions, this is one of the main things I'm going to do with this page and Nihon Hustle. There is a lot more to come in this area… stay tuned.
From New Jersey to Illinois… a short seven year jaunt in Minnesota, another fifteen or so back in Illinois (Chicago!)… and now to my new home in Japan. I can say that, finally, I've found home.
Howdy, I'm Doc Kane.
I kinda' have a long story… more than I feel is worth spilling on the page for the time being, but I'm sure as time goes on and I flesh out other aspects of Nihon Hustle, I'll be back to fill in the gaps a bit. Thanks for reading what I'm dishing out for the moment. 😉
I'm a writer. I've pretty much been taking pen to paper for as long as I can remember… about the only thing I recall doing longer is researching and selling: candy in high school, lemonade as a youngster, forklifts and all manner of other things as an adult. I had a paper route at age twelve, and worked in a vineyard when I was fifteen. I've been working my whole damn life, it seems. I don't mind it… in fact, I find stopping to be the most difficult part.
I've always got some sort of side project going on, and I'm quite sure that'll continue forever. My wife has the fun job of keeping me focused… that creative entrepreneurial curse of wanting to do everything at once is something I can't seem to shake—she's the only one who has the superpower to get me to rest a bit so I actually get something done, instead of getting a million things “half-done.”
Perhaps that sounds familiar? If so, I think you'll find a lot of things worth learning around here.
Why even listen to me at all?
Well, I don't know… I think I've learned a lot over the years, and from a lot of people, and a ton of books. I'm the guy McKinsey wouldn't have hired because I lacked the $100,000 MBA. No sweat. I learned a lot through hustle and hard work. In person, I'm guy people have always felt comfortable asking for help when they're stuck, when they can't find a resource, an answer, a new way of looking at things. If we ever meet, I hope to be able to do that for you.
Why Nihon Hustle?
This effort was born out of frustration, mainly… again, something that if you live in Japan, you might be familiar with.
In 2017, when I first decided to live and work in Japan, I was fulfilling a lifelong dream. Not to live in Japan, per se (that desire didn't really come until about 10 years ago)…, but to live and work in country other than the United States. I arrived here with about 6K, the reminader of 10K previously stacked away in my 401K (I'll write about that later…), then watched as it slowly dwindled away to nothingness as my search for an “easy” job teaching English went on and on and on for six months.
By some miracle of luck (in quite literally the last few days of being able to get the paperwork in that would allow me to extend my vistor visa), I ended up with a gig teaching at an eikaiwa in the Shinnagata area of Kobe. I was so lucky, and quite literally have one person to thank for helping me live out this dream life I have now. This guy –> Dan Krohn at Crown English in Kobe. Oh, yes… the picture of me… indeed, that's my slightly heavier self before I started running so much in 2019. Dan's help didn't stop there, though, he also connected me with a number of other gigs, part time, and ongoing that have kept me surviging in Japan… he's been a temendous help.
But I've always been driven to do more than just survive, and teaching, I found, wasn't exactly the career I was looking for… as you may know, some students are great, and others not so. The desire to learn English is often pushed upon many kids, and it creates less reward for everyone involved.
So, at the tail end of 2019, I resigned from the eikaiwa, and essentially put myself into retirement—something I'd been planing on since my thirties. I turned 50 in 2019, and getting out of the rat race since the turn of the decade had long been on my plate. It didn't matter that I wasn't sure how the hell I'd make things pan out, but I thought with a strong woman helping lead the way, and far more gusto than is good for me sometimes, it'd all work out.
It has… or, it's beginning to! A year into this venture, my wife and I have translated several books of Japanese literature into English as part of our indie publishing firm, Maplopo —with many more on the way. We're excited about what the future holds for this effort, but are really doing it for fun more than anything else.
I still have a few teaching clients I work with that are enjoyable, and provide a steady income when the world isn't falling apart because of a deadly virus.
Nihon Hustle, and Maplopo are my main priorities, and the drivers that get me going each and every day. So, let's see what happens. On this website, I'll share my journey and resources I hope will be valuable so you can get the life you desire here in Japan as well. I'll also be interviewing a slew of Japanese and non-Japanese business owners so we can all learn about how they're weathering business in Japan. It's going to be a fun ride. Please join us.
So! Whether you're a teacher, a banker, a programmer, a member of the service, or something entirely different, with the dream of starting your own business in Japan, it is my goal to help you do just that.
Again, thanks for reading… I'll see you around.
P.S. Want to check out a bit of my professional background? You can learn about my film work, and experience as a medical writer, and all sorts of other fun stuff by checking out my LinkedIn profile thingy, below.
“When fortune bestows new friendship upon us, it is then that we are truly lucky.”
Why Work With Me?