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Photos and Video from San Francisco Token-Kai 2021

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I'm home now after my first sword show at the San Francisco Token-Kai. I had an incredible time, learned so much, made a few purchases, met some great people, and can't wait to attend another show. For those that missed it, here's a few photos and a video I took of the event. My camera is just an older iPhone, so I imagine there are better photos out there, but here's what I've got.


Me up and ready bright and early for the day. My wife tagged along for the morning, but I was left free rein for the afternoon :)






I went back and looked at this BEAUTIFUL sword several times. A Hizento by the second generation, the owner had just completed a daisho by the first generation Tadayoshi and was selling this example from the same school:







One of the best attendees was this little friend:



A MASSIVE o-dachi:





A Yoroi-dōshi (edited for spelling, thanks Piers D!). I had been hoping to see one!












Ha ha ha, I'm not quite sure about the science here, but a great way to build community, and the dealer was incredibly nice!



Very few kyu gunto present. I had been hoping to study more, but honestly, I think there were perhaps 3 total.



Of course, I was foolish and didn't get a good photo of this display, which was several Juyo works, and the most expensive was $175,000. Beautiful!!


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Here's the shot of my loot upon getting home! I need to properly take photos and kantai the two katana I purchased, so those will be in the "Nihonto" sub-forum sometime in the next month.



And finally is the short walkaround video I took. I didn't want to be too obtrusive, so it's probably about a third of the booths and really just a glancing view of most. But fun to see everyone!


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Thanks for all the eye sweets, er… candy!


Yoroi piercing? Hmmm… Rather it passes by or slips between the sections of yoroi, to the back, neck etc., so ‘Yoroi-dōshi’.

According to some sources, also known as 馬手差し Metezashi..., worn at the right hip.

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Many thanks for posting this Michael . I have always wondered what one of the American shows would look like and yours is the first decent photographic coverage that I can recall seeing . You were lucky to be there. 

Ian brooks

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7 hours ago, Stephen said:

May i ask who was supplying the mouth sanitizer? I have a good guess but dont want to say his name n be wrong.

Shoot, sorry, but I didn’t catch his name. It looks like he’s a regular though; his booth and back of his head (presumably) is in this 2016 video at 1:41, and he’s got Maker’s Mark then too:

 . Like I said, really nice gentleman.


Thanks, everyone, for the nice comments! It was just so FUN to hold things in hand and actually talk with people about this niche topic in person. 

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11 hours ago, Tom Darling said:

Michael,  congratulations you've got a new job, video all the Shows, best I've seen in a longtime.  Very much appreciated.  Good hunting. I also love your kitty.

Thanks @Tom Darling! I’m not sure when the next show I’ll get to attend will be, but I’m positive it’ll happen some time. 

Our cat is pretty great :) We got him when we lived in Japan. He’s naughty and kind of dim sometimes, but we love him.

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