Cara Clegg

After discovering anime in her early teens, Cara decided she wanted to live in Japan. Of course her parents thought it was just a fad... but 11 years, a university degree in Japanese Studies, and a whole lot of culture shock later, here she is. She currently works a day job whilst writing and translating otome games in the evenings. Her hobbies include anime, manga, sci-fi & fantasy TV shows, and starting countless things that will never get finished.

All Stories by Cara Clegg

Learn how to drink with Japanese people in this funny and informative YouTube series【Videos】

MOVIE LIFE KYOTO is a video series which aims to introduce Japanese culture to foreigners in a light-hearted and humorous fashion. With English narration and Japanese subtitles, they’re filled with little factoids and hilariously on-point observations that will be of interest to foreign visitors and a source of much ‘that’s so true!’ amusement for Japanese people, too!

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Dragon Quest creator reveals secrets behind mysterious ending

The creator of legendary RPG series Dragon Quest has spilled the beans on the mysterious ending to the third game that still had fans puzzled over 25 years since its original release. Read on to find out, but beware – some things are best left a mystery.

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Secret backmasked message found hidden in Dragon Ball Z ending song

There are many urban legends of satanic verses hidden in popular music to subconsciously corrupt our children. While those claims may not always be true, there are definitely a lot of songs out there that feature backmasked messages (hidden messages revealed only when you play the piece backwards). So what could possibly be hiding behind the cutesy, bouncy Dragon Ball Z ending song?!

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High-speed rail in China just got moe-fied

Taiwan has their cute rail mascot, and now China’s getting in on the act, too. Originally doujinshi characters, these anthropomorphised moe anime versions of high-speed trains have now made their debut at an official rail event. Read on to see the cosplaying cuties and their 2-D counterparts.

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Why is Japan such an unpopular tourist destination?

You would think that a country like Japan, rich as it is in both traditional culture and technical innovation, as well as plenty of weird and wacky things you’ll never see elsewhere, would be a huge hit with tourists. But as it turns out, Japan is actually not such a popular destination for people traveling abroad. Join us after the jump to find out why.

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Artist gives the finger to famous characters from fiction and real life

Our fingers are each a special snowflake, the ridges and whorls on the pads creating a unique pattern that sets us apart from anyone else. Criminals go to great lengths to make sure not so much as a pinky touches the scene to leave incriminating evidence, but if they get careless and leave a print behind perhaps they could give some of the following disguises a try.

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Japanese youths celebrate reaching adulthood with outrageous outfits and Elvis hair

Monday was Coming of Age day in Japan, an annual celebration held on the second Monday of January where those who have turned 20 over the past year come together to celebrate while everyone else gets a day off work. There are ceremonies (seijin shiki) held at local and prefectural offices and of course many after-parties where I’m sure everyone acts as maturely as befits a young adult. In Kitakyushu things got a bit wild, with a substantial number of kids turning up with crazy pimped out outfits and hair.

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Self-taught Chinese street photographer captures all the right moments on camera

Tao Liu has a knack for capturing split-second moments that reveal funny configurations or striking parallels, and embody the essence of the hectic and haphazard Chinese streets where he and countless others live and work.

His work has gone viral in China, and is now spreading across the world thanks to people sharing his images across the net. Street photography is about capturing poignant and fleeting points in time, which say something about the human condition, even if that something cannot be put into words, and Tao Liu’s photographs speak across languages and cultures.

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That moment when you realize you forgot to take your dog out of your handbag

People are always forgetting to take stuff out of their bags. Sometimes you’ll hear your phone ringing and have to rush to unzip all your rucksacks, or you’ll have to scrabble through endless purses to find the one you left that receipt in. Or sometimes you’ll hear your dog barking and… huh?

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Not just for humans – dogs love the warmth of a kotatsu, too!

One of the worst things about winter in Japan is that with no central heating and a lack of insulation, the temperature inside your house feels pretty much the same as the temperature outside your house. One of the best things is taking the opportunity to snuggle up under a kotatsu, especially if you have a furry friend to join you.

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Can Maru fit into the tiny box? He certainly thinks he can… 【Video】

Feline YouTube star Maru brings the cute again in this new video titled “Maru never gives up”. It’s as simple as the description states: “Maru believes that he can get into all boxes. And Maru never gives up.” Join us after the jump for the full video and a breakdown of this chunky little neko‘s antics.

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Latest Dragon Ball movie collaborates with explicit Japanese rock band

Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama and Japanese rock band Maximum the Hormone have each creatively inspired the other, and now they have come together for the latest Dragon Ball Z movie, which will feature the band’s intense and explicit track “F” as the main battle song.

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Gorgeous snow-white cat is effortlessly adorable as he keeps warm this winter【Monday Kickstart】

Happy Monday, dear RocketNews24 readers! Here in Japan it’s been an especially gloomy Monday as it’s the first day back to work after the all too short New Year’s break. But there’s nothing like taking a sneaky peek at a few cute cat pictures on your phone during the morning meeting or lecture to get you feeling a little less blue, so here you go.

This snow-white kitty is cute enough as it is, but what does he do when his owner flips the switch on the heated rug beneath him?

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Did samurai use armoured cats and mice in battle?

The beautiful and imposing samurai armour from the Warring States period (sengoku jidai) still fascinates people today, and there are historians who have dedicated their lives to finding out as much about ancient warfare as possible. We know that warriors often rode horseback, but did samurai also use armoured cats and mice in their epic battles?!

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One Piece themed amusement park due to open in Tokyo this March

Anime and manga fans will soon have even more reason to visit the country that offers the opportunity to eat Pikachu-themed meals at the Pokémon restaurant or gaze up in awe at an 18-foot tall giant Gundam. The long-awaited world’s first One Piece amusement park will be arriving on March 13 2015 in Tokyo!

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Contents of Starbucks Coffee’s 2015 lucky bag REVEALED!

Happy New Year! At the start of the new year in Japan many stores release fukubukuro, or lucky bags, where you can get a selection of goodies for less than they usually retail for, as well as limited edition items. People rush around the stores picking up fukubukuro from all their favourite brands, but often the items inside are a secret. We’re here to reveal some of them so you can make an informed decision on which to go for.

Here we have Starbucks Coffee’s offering, which sells for 3,500 yen (US$29). Read on to find out what’s inside!

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Overheard at Comiket: wise words from the C87 staff

Thousands of otaku stagger home yenless and struggling under the weight of the doujinshi, illustration books, games and other goods they’ve snapped up in a frenzied three days of pushing, shoving, and waiting in endless lines. Yep, Comiket 87 is over for now, until the whole ordeal begins again next summer.

Most people agree that the event is more arduous than fun, and the volunteer staff are in the unenviable position of keeping things under control, trying to keep the hordes moving, and looking anyone who collapses from the excitement of it all.

Below we have a collection of inspiring quotes from these heroic men and women. Some of them are simply priceless.

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Dirty Car Art is the perfect excuse not to wash your car ever again

Have you ever doodled in the dirt on your car before you finally got around to washing it? Or perhaps when you were younger you wrote something rude in the dust on the neighbour’s rear window? American artist Scott Wade took his doodling many steps further and now creates this stunning Dirty Car Art that you’d never want to wash off.

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Pop-pom pigeons are topping Japan’s cute-o-meter this winter

Perhaps the (in)famous pigeon dating sim Hatoful Boyfriend has given the nation a soft spot for the feathered creatures, because Japanese people have been going crazy for cute pics of pigeons all fluffed up in the cold.

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Get spirited away in China’s Ghibli-esque tourist complex

Studio Ghibli’s acclaimed film Spirited Away is beloved around the world for its touching story and beautiful animation, and the whimsical setting has a real-life counterpart. Jiufen, a mountainous area of New Taipei City in Taiwan is said to be where creator Hayao Miyazaki drew a lot of his inspiration for the film, and many tourists visit the area to feel like they’re stepping into the magical world of Spirited Away. But it turns out there’s also somewhere similar in China! Check out these photos and videos of the incredible place.

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