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Adorable three-year-old Filipino boy absolutely kills it on the drums【Videos】

Adorable three-year-old Filipino boy absolutely kills it on the drums【Videos】

Martin Cruz hails from Iselin New Jersey, is a killer at playing church music on the drums, and is just three years old! Watch four videos of this little guy owning that kit after the jump.

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A guide to public bathhouses, the newest hot spot for tourists in Tokyo

A guide to public bathhouses, the newest hot spot for tourists in Tokyo

When coming to Japan, there’s a wealth of things to do and see–even just staying within the Tokyo city limits, you’d be hard pressed to enjoy everything available in a week. On the other hand, if you just stick with the big sightseeing spots, you’ll be both crushed by crowds and probably bored in a few days. This has left a lot of overseas tourists with time–and incentive–to look for new or unique activities.

One of the things apparently gaining popularity is sento, or public bathhouses. While not quite as much fun as hanging out in hot springs in the mountains with monkeyssento still provide a fun and different activity for anyone just looking to relax. The warm waters are especially welcome after a few days running around Tokyo! But you might want to check this handy guide before you head out for a soak in order to avoid annoying other bathers.

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Five of our favorite blogs about Japan

Five of our favorite blogs about Japan

There’s a lot of information about Japan floating around on the internet, so finding a really great site can seem like a never-ending endeavor. As self-proclaimed Japanophiles, we have more than a few sites we frequent to get our daily dose of anything about our home away from home. It was hard to choose, but here are five of our favorite blogs about Japan.

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Japan-made printer briefly impresses the Internet by catching its own paper

Japan-made printer briefly impresses the Internet by catching its own paper

Working hard every day in offices all over the world, the humble printer rarely gets its due. While the flashier (and sometimes more scandalous) 3-D printers tend to capture most of the attention, everyday office printers continue their humdrum existence just under the radar of most of the world.

But that all changed the other week when the Internet caught a glimpse of a printer seemingly catching its own paper as the sheets were about to fall to the ground. The printer, made by the Japanese company Kyocera, awed netizens worldwide and made them wonder if the Kyoto-based electronics manufacturer had other secret printer features.

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“Hate summer homework, kids? We’ll do it for you!” A disturbingly booming business in Japan

“Hate summer homework, kids? We’ll do it for you!” A disturbingly booming business in Japan

The following is a typical scene that many families in Japan will have recently experienced, and probably not for the first time: It’s August 31, the last day of summer vacation and the fall semester is starting in less than 24 hours. The kids who played all month suddenly realize that they have to do 40 pages of kanji and math drills, write a book report for a book they haven’t read, and fill in 30 days’ worth of journal entries–an assignment that they dutifully kept up with for all of the first week of summer break. They clamor for help, and despite the scoldings and I-told-you-so’s, “nice” parents and the more responsible siblings reluctantly pitch in.

Sure, the above isn’t an exemplary approach to avoiding bad grades, but recently an even more dubious method has been getting a lot of attention: online businesses have been offering to do your child’s homework and school projects for a fee! While the homework-by-proxy racket is nothing new, recent media coverage of the growing enterprise has brought to light this questionable practice and its appalling popularity among elementary and junior high school students.

What does this teach, and not teach, future adults? Why are parents taking advantage of these services for their young children? One twisted reason will probably surprise you.

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Japanese celebricat Maru gets a pushcart, gets to work pushing 【Video】

Japanese celebricat Maru gets a pushcart, gets to work pushing 【Video】

Okay, confession time. I am a little bitsigh, A LOTobsessed with internet cats. From Lil Bub to Little P and with a lot of Princess Monster Truck in between, I follow them all. But perhaps the cutest and most consistently entertaining is chubby, lazy Maru, who happens to live in Japan with his owner known by YouTube handle mugumogu.

Maru is so famous he has his own book and has appeared in both print and TV ads for major brands like Uniqlo. Mostly he likes hanging out at home trying to fit into various boxes, but if the latest video is any indication, he may have a new hobby: pushing a pushcart around the house.

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Before anyone freaks out, no, Kirby isn’t human

Before anyone freaks out, no, Kirby isn’t human

It’s been a couple of weeks now since Kitty-gate, or “that time when someone at Sanrio said Hello Kitty wasn’t a cat and the world went nuts”. The issue has now, hopefully, been laid to rest, and we can all get back to watching videos of chubby cats pushing toy wagons around and debating things like which flavour of Pringles is best (answer: Sour Creme and Onion).

But a line in a recently published Japanese gaming guide has now suggested that yet another much-loved character is not what he first seemed. Rather than simply being the giant pink blob that we always thought him to be, it would seem that Nintendo’s marshmallow-faced mascot Kirby is actually “a person” – something that has greatly amused the internet-using public here in Japan.

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New toy from Takara Tomy transforms eggs into custard pudding in just a few cranks of a handle

New toy from Takara Tomy transforms eggs into custard pudding in just a few cranks of a handle

Although Japan’s purin (crème caramel/flan) differs somewhat from other countries’, everyone has those days where you just want to down a cup or two of the stuff due to some inexplicable craving. Other times you’re sitting there with a regular old cup of instant ramen and want to liven things up with that great custard taste mixed in.

The problem is that purin usually isn’t always at hand, so these cravings require a trip to the corner store or supermarket. But what if you could make your own custard pudding with minimal effort and using only a single egg? And what if you didn’t even have to break that egg to make it?

This dream may become a reality if an upcoming toy from Japan’s Takara Tomy Arts does what its amazing ad claims.

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Here’s how you can knit yourself a bowl of ramen【Video】

Here’s how you can knit yourself a bowl of ramen【Video】

Ramen is easy enough to make with a package of Cup Noodles, but knitting a bowl of hot soup takes a lot more skill. A talented artist who goes by the name betibettin on YouTube has produced a video showing us just how he accomplished this feat. You’re especially going to want to see how he makes the noodles and soup broth!

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10,000 anime fans pick Psycho-Pass 2 as the most anticipated fall anime

10,000 anime fans pick Psycho-Pass 2 as the most anticipated fall anime

Charapedia asked 10,000 what anime series they’re most looking forward to this Fall. The sequel to Gen Urobuchi‘s futuristic, dystopian crime-drama Psycho-Pass took the top spot with 2,015 votes. Here’s the Top 20ranked based on all votes, followed by Top 10 by gender.

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McDonald’s Japan is bringing Mushroom Risotto Balls this autumn and people couldn’t be angrier

McDonald’s Japan is bringing Mushroom Risotto Balls this autumn and people couldn’t be angrier

If we’ve learnt one thing from the vast number of articles on this site, Japanese fast food chains like McDonald’s come up with some really good ideas to keep people coming to their restaurants. Regardless of whether they turn out delicious or disgusting, inventions such as the luxury burger line-up, avocado burger, and tofu nuggets are hard to ignore.

It’s gotten to the point that people in Japan may have grown too accustomed to the nice things served at fast food outlets. For example, McDonald’s recently announced their new autumn special – Mushroom Risotto Balls – and online reaction could largely be described as righteous indignation with comments like “only an idiot would eat that!”

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Reddit user claims common Tokyo chain has “best ramen ever” for just US$6, we investigate

Reddit user claims common Tokyo chain has “best ramen ever” for just US$6, we investigate

A decade or two ago, the big Japanese food export that everybody raved about was sushi. Sushi joints cropped up all over the place, with the more authentic places employing highly skilled Japanese chefs slinging expertly crafted sushi at exorbitant prices. In places like New York City, sushi was the go-to food if you wanted to eat out but keep it at least a little on the healthy side.

Then, Westerners apparently took a look at all the diet food in their grocery stores and bland sandwich wraps in their food trucks and decided to revolt. Suddenly, wraps, sushi and other healthy foods were replaced with cronuts, cupcakes, “all the bacon and eggs you have,” and, of course, ramen. Delicious, fatty, greasy ramen quickly replaced sushi as the hip Japanese food and Westerners are willing to pay top dollar for it.

Of course, some Japanese (primarily the slightly feral citizens of 2chan) argue that, for all the money they’re shelling out, Westerners couldn’t pick out a truly great bowl of ramen to save their lives. So, 2chan was unsurprisingly amused when Reddit user lemonpls posted to a foodie subreddit that he’d found the greatest bowl of ramen he’d ever had in his life… at a common fast food chain in Tokyo.

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Blue-eyed cat has the best reaction after spotting something strange in the backyard

Blue-eyed cat has the best reaction after spotting something strange in the backyard

Sometimes a single glance says it all, and in this particular case, the startled face of this cute cat screams, “Hurry, mom!!! Something’s not right!” But what exactly has this little kitty all in a tizzy?

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Kabe-don no longer just for humans, cat proves his manly credentials

Kabe-don no longer just for humans, cat proves his manly credentials

The kabe-dons not just for humans anymore! Introducing the kabe-don-neko, here to make you swoon with his masculine pose and come-hither stare. Or more likely just give you a giggle.

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Adorable sumo egg cups are here to turn your breakfast table into a wrestling ring

Adorable sumo egg cups are here to turn your breakfast table into a wrestling ring

Maybe it’s a result of having lived in one too many apartments with a cramped kitchen, or just a desire to reduce the number of dishes I need to wash, but I’ve never really understood the point of tabletop egg cups. I can’t imagine eating hard-boiled eggs frequently enough, or giving them such prominent billing in my diet, that I’d need to go out and buy specialized kitchenware for them.

I find myself warming to the idea, though, now that someone’s designed egg cups in a way that lets tiny edible sumo wrestlers grace your table.

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Genius dishes can be molded freely to hold whatever you want

Genius dishes can be molded freely to hold whatever you want

I’m not really the most organized person around; my desk looks like someone who hates me with a dark passion sneaks in every night just to sweep papers around and knock stuff over. So I’ve never really had much interest in or need for one of those little random odds-and-ends plates to hold trinkets (the floor does a pretty good job of that, for me).

But, if you are an organized person, have a lot of trinkets or just like having cool stuff around to decorate with, you’re probably going to love these awesome dishes that can be molded into any shape your heart desires and returned to their original state over and over again.

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Classroom distractions: What were they thinking when they made these textbooks??

Classroom distractions: What were they thinking when they made these textbooks??

You’ve likely seen some of the impressive textbook doodles from Asia before–and you should definitely check them out if you haven’t–but it turns out that bored students aren’t the only ones filling textbooks with bizarre illustrations. Sometimes it seems as if the publishers themselves were out to troll students with the weirdest illustrations we’ve ever seen.

It’s almost as if these textbooks from Japan were compiled by your pot-smoking high school English teacher and his best friend the alcoholic art teacher…

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Sexy yukata amuse Japanese Internet users, leave us confused

Sexy yukata amuse Japanese Internet users, leave us confused

One of the more disturbing stereotypes propagated about Japan is that of the “sexy geisha,” which can often be found around Halloween time in the form of unrealistically skimpy (and blatantly racist) outfits. Normally, we’d decry any version of these get-ups, but when they’re manufactured and sold in Japan, we find ourselves left scratching our heads.

Fortunately, Japanese Internet users also gave us something to smile about with their amused–and confused–comments.

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Real-life Fruit Ninja! Watch Isao Machii slice up flying fruit like a boss 【Video】

Real-life Fruit Ninja! Watch Isao Machii slice up flying fruit like a boss 【Video】

They call him ‘The Modern-Day Samurai’. Master swordsman Isao Machii can slice a BB gun pellet in mid-air. He holds four World Records for swordsmanship – so what’s he doing slicing up fruit in this ad for Toaster Strudels?

It’s still a cool video, though, as he slices his way through watermelons and pineapples at lightning speed. Join us after the jump for a look at this “live action fruit ninja” vid. What would Gretchen Weiners’s father think?

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Nintendo unveils new 3DS models with more controls, NFC support

Nintendo unveils new 3DS models with more controls, NFC support

Nintendo announced on Friday during its Nintendo Direct video presentation that new Nintendo3DS models will be available in Japan on October 11. The new 3DS will retail for 16,000 yen (about US$154) and the new 3DS XL will go for 18,800 yen (about US$180). A Western release date was not announced.

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