Jessica Kozuka

Jessica Kozuka is a freelance writer and editor living in the exciting, interesting and sometimes perplexing city of Tokyo. Her work has appeared in Wine Spectator, CNN Travel, and The Japan Times, as well as numerous other print and online media outlets. She writes a column on NPO/NGOs and volunteer work for Metropolis, the largest English-language magazine in Japan, and specializes in EFL educational materials and travel writing. Kozuka is rarely to be found without a book or two within arm’s reach, though there's no telling if they will be serious literature or frivolous guilty pleasures, and she runs a monthly book club for other bibliophiles in the Tokyo area. She's also an enthusiastic if mediocre cook and daily laments the smallness of Japanese kitchens.

All Stories by Jessica

Get shaved ice and chiseled muscles at macho kakigori event【Photos】

Temperatures are rising in Tokyo, y’all.

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Magic fail makes dignity disappear【Video】

Can you spot what went wrong?

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Lettuce makes tasty booze and other discoveries at a new all-you-can-drink shochu bar

Lettuce shochu counts as a vegetable, right?

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You gotta fight for your right to flash mob?

Is a flash mob protected free speech? The Japanese courts will decide.

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Takarazuka becomes fourth Japanese municipality to recognize same-sex partnerships

Love wins, one city office at a time.
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Four surefire ways to lose Instagram followers

Our reporter P.K. Sanjun can drive them off in droves!

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Foreign press greeted by unusually conspicuous ninjas at G7 summit

Normally you wouldn’t see a ninja until it’s too late…

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Stunning 4K videos of Dazaifu shrine will make you want a nicer screen and a ticket to Fukuoka

Unlike yours truly, Japan looks even better in super high def.

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Official Hentai Kamen costume set now available

It’s never too early to start planning for Halloween, especially since you may want to squeeze in a few extra leg days…

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Our lonely male reporter finds romance, Zen contentment with a pair of stockings

When we forced one of our male reporters into a pair of stockings to celebrate National Stockings Day, we had no idea how much he’d enjoy it…

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Young Chinese man placates angry girlfriend by cleverly rolling on the ground【Video】

Pay attention, guys. A bad pun might save your relationship some day.

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New Tokyo Olympic stadium architect responds to accusations of plagiarism

It seems controversy over the new National Stadium for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics isn’t over yet.

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Machida Squirrel Garden: Tokyo’s tiny zoo for equally tiny critters【Photos】

A whole zoo devoted to the common squirrel? Of course—it’s Japan!

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“We hear the cries of sushi”: Teaser for mysterious 3DCG anime Sushi Police released【Video】

Since winning the Poster Award at the 2015 Cannes Film Market, people have been wondering what the heck CG anime Sushi Police is about. Now we know. Kind of.

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Chinese artisans use traditional foot-powered lathe to craft beautiful wooden bowls【Video】

At one time, nearly all of the 270 households in the village of Shawo would have been engaged in woodcraft, but today just six elderly men know the old techniques. Luckily, a younger generation is taking steps to ensure that the craft does not die out.

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Japanese man shares photo of near-perfect ‘poop emoji’ in hand cream, Twitter goes nuts

When Japanese Twitter user @nasuiro posted this picture of a blob of hand cream last week, he probably had no idea that it would end up being retweeted over 41,000 times

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Japan’s “escape room” games go foreigner-friendly, into the underground

I’m slightly claustrophobic. So you might wonder why I would volunteer to have myself locked into a small room with a bunch of strangers. The truth is that I can’t resist a puzzle.

This is an escape room, an immersive puzzle-solving experience that will test your lateral thinking skills and problem-solving, and for the first time in Japan, it’s being offered in English and Chinese.

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“Macho” yakiniku restaurant offers beef with a side of beefcake【Photos】

Korean barbecue, or yakiniku as it’s known here is Japan, is a popular among all diners, but particularly men seem drawn to the primal enjoyment of roasting gobs of raw meat over flames. Or maybe they just like meat. Either way, the customer base skews male.

However, this month a pop-up yakiniku restaurant in Tokyo’s Ebisu neighborhood seemed to be taking particular aim at the ladies. Let’s see if you can spot their unique approach.

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Art collective POW! WOW! completes series of murals in Tokyo’s Tennozu Isle【Photos】

If you happen to have been wandering around Tennozu Isle this past week, you may have noticed a big change. The somewhat drab little island of office buildings and factories has been distinctly enlivened by a series of large public murals courtesy of an international group of artists known as POW! WOW!

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Designer makes daruma good enough to eat with sushi, parfait and fried pork

Japan is a country that really values tradition, but that doesn’t mean that traditional culture is completely sacrosanct either. Giving something old and iconic a tongue-in-cheek modern twist is a popular approach in art and commerce, with results at once familiar and jarring enough to be eye catching.

Like these daruma, spotted at Tokyo Design Week, with outrageous paint jobs and wearing some rather tasty-looking headgear.

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