Internet

Tuffy Rhodes, all-star baseball player in Japan, wows basketball crowd with kindness

As many of our readers probably already know, baseball is incredibly popular in Japan–in fact it sometimes seems as if Japanese folks love the sport more than people from the US. Japanese fans can be truly fanatical and they gladly follow everything from the local team to the major leagues, which makes it no wonder that so many Japanese players eventually make their way to the US.

Of course, it’s not uncommon to see players going the opposite direction across the Pacific, with MLB players coming to Japan to play professionally. One of the best example has to be Tuffy Rhodes, who played for the Chicago Cubs and Boston Red Sox before moving to the Nihon Professional Baseball league in the mid-1990s. Tuffy recently became a bit of an Internet sensation thanks to his good will and kindness at sports games. The weird thing was that it wasn’t even a baseball game!

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The Real Barbie Army grows larger with the appearance of a Chinese recruit【Photos】

There must be something in the water…or maybe in the atmosphere? Well, whatever it is, the ranks of the “Real Barbie” army seem to only be growing faster! All across the world, new recruits keep appearing, one after another, in the most…peculiar of forms.

Our most recent example hails from China and has garnered quite a bit of attention in her native country–and has gotten noticed in Japan as well. But what will her role be in the Real Barbie plans for world conquest?

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New hands-free binoculars let you see far, look like something out of One Piece

Don’t you hate it when you’re out birding in Tibet and you spot a Sillem’s Mountain Finch? The find itself is great of course, but immediately upon sighting it you want to light up a cuban cigar in order to celebrate, in accordance with birdwatching tradition. The problem, is you have to put down your binoculars to do so, thus potentially losing sight of the rare bird.

To address this problem that we all must deal with at one point in our lives, a Shanghai wholesaler is offering “Meganegata Sogankyo” or “Glasses-type Binoculars” which allow you to see long distances while retaining the use of both your hands, in the most steampunk way possible.

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His name is Balse and he looks like Colonel Muska: Japanese netizens go wild for new French PM

Japanese netizens are bursting with excitement about Manuel Valls, who was appointed as France’s new Prime Minister this week. But what are these Twitter users so astounded about? Well, the newly appointed Prime Minister supposedly bears a striking resemblance to evil genius Colonel Muska, from Hayao Miyazaki’s 1986 movie Castle in the Sky.

And what’s more, in Japanese his name sounds just like barusu or “balse”, the incantation from Castle in the Sky. So this new guy not only looks like a character from the classic animated movie, his name also happens to be the movie’s most important word – which, incidentally, is a record-breaking Twitter meme in its own right.

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Hamster butts go mainstream in Japan, get their very own Facebook fan page

See? Didn’t we tell you Japan had a thing for rodent derrière?

It turns out that it’s not just a few fanatics spending hours in front of their hamster cage with a digital camera trying to get photos of their furry pet from behind — there are apparently thousands of like-minded netizens in Japan, and now an entire Facebook group exists just for people who like to talk about and upload photos of their pet hamsters’ bottoms.

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So that’s what they mean! SWAT hand signals as explained by a working Japanese mother

If we had a 100 yen for every action movie that showed scenes of SWAT teams sneaking around waving hand signals at each other, we’d probably have, um, a lot of yen. At least enough to buy a Happy Meal or something. But have you ever looked closely at those hand signals? For most of us, they could be making it up on the spot and we’d probably never know! Fortunately, this is the Internet and everything you could ever want to learn about anything is probably available online.

And that includes hand signals! For a few years now, charts explaining the hand signals that sneaky tactical groups use to communicate silently have floated around on the web, though their explanations have always been a bit…straightforward. “Stop.” “Look over there.” “Holy crap, they’re shooting at us!” All pretty standard fare, we suppose. But standard fare is never good enough for the Internet, and thus “Hand signals commonly used by mothers with babies” was born!

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Sailor Uranus & Neptune make it to LogoTV’s character semi-finals

LogoTV, the lifestyle channel targeting gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender demographics, is holding a “Gayest Cartoon Tournament.” Sailor Moon characters Haruka Tenoh/Sailor Uranus and her partner Michiru Kaioh/Sailor Neptune have successfully made it to the semi-finals. The duo is competing against South Park’s Big Gay Al. If they win, they will go to the finals round against eitherFamily Guy’s Stewie or American Dad’s Roger.

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Japanese Twitter user ruins Thomas the Tank Engine for everyone with ultra-creepy drawing

Well, that’s a much-loved part of my childhood ruined forever…

I have fond memories of rushing home as quickly possible every Monday afternoon circa 1986, pulling my mother along behind me after she had kindly come to meet me from school, and constantly asking her what time it was, fretting that I might miss even a snippet of the opening credits of kids’ TV show Thomas and Friends.

Had I known that there was just some creepy nude guy inside that little blue tank engine, though, I might have instead dragged my feet as much as possible so as not to give my four-year-old self, already with a highly active imagination and a fear of anything that wasn’t my cat or jam sandwiches, any additional nightmare fuel.

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Tsunami survival by the numbers, it doesn’t take much

It shouldn’t be hard to remember the sheer force that a tsunami can unleash on land. And with the recent quakes in Chile, many parts of the world wonder if another is not too far away.  But there’s an important thing about a tsunami that is not often discussed, and that’s how big it has to be to jeopardize your life.

Recently a Twitter user posted a photo of this safety poster which has caused those who saw it to wish it was seen all over the country. You might be able to understand this graphic which shows the water level versus the probability of death without understanding the Japanese, but let’s look at it a little more closely.

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【TBT】China’s Photoshop experts will fix your bad photos, but be careful what you wish for

Thanks to the high level of image processing technology available, even a picture taken by an arthritic spider monkey can be made to look like something from Ansel Adams’ portfolio. Beyond that we can even create scenarios which stretch the limits of our imagination. With a little practice, one could create a seamless photo of Mickey Mouse punching Mr.T in the stomach while gold coins shoot out of his ears.

With this in mind, some Photoshop artisans have taken to the web in China and are using their unique skill sets to make right what once went wrong in the world of photography. However, sometimes wires intentionally get crossed, leading to some seriously hilarious results.
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Guy lifehacks his way to flawless “Seven Samurai” wall art

When I was a freshman in university, still meandering aimlessly around campus as a General Education (read: “Future Starbucks Lifer”) major, I spent a brief stint in the art college thinking I’d give drawing or maybe even painting a try. After several months of doodling poorly-drawn machine gun-wielding dinosaurs attacking stick figures while my classmates were effortlessly putting together impressive full canvases, I decided I wasn’t really cut out for fine arts.

If only, like this guy, I’d known I could use clever lifehacks to give me an edge in class. The unnamed do-it-yourselfer used simple tools including a few different sizes of paint brush, a paint roller and an old-school projector hooked up to a computer to transfer an iconic scene from Akira Kurosawa’s classic Seven Samurai onto a barren dining room wall with stellar results. To top it all off, he claims he has no formal training or innate art talent and that anyone with enough time and just the right amount of crazed dedication to pop culture can do it.

Here’s his step-by-step guide:

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Cat locks owner out of the house, confirms plans for world domination

We’ve all had days where things just go inexplicably wrong. Forgetting your homework, tripping over the cat, or worst of all, getting locked out of the house–all of these are horrible ways to start or end any day of the week. But have you ever wondered why it seems that when one thing goes bad, everything goes bad? Well, this video might provide an answer to the mystery: It’s all the cat!!

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Infant cosplay: It’s-a me, Mario-bambino! 【Photos】

For any parent that’s ever thought, “My child is super cute, but I wish he looked a bit more like an Italian-American plumber,” do we have news for you.

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Google kicks off April Fools’ Day with a Google Maps Pokemon Challenge that’s actually real…kinda

As you might expect, Google is up to its usual pranks in honor of April Fools’ Day, but this time, they’ve created something that’s actually playable that allows any Google Maps user to be the very best, like no one ever was.

The Google Maps Pokemon Challenge was announced in the form of an awesome YouTube video, with specific details on how to gain the coveted title of any 90s kid: Pokémon Master. Brian McClendon, Vice President of Google Maps, explains, “Now using the technology created by the Google Maps team, we’ve prepared the most rigorous test known to man to find the world’s best Pokémon Master.”

But this year, Google has one extra trick up their sleeve, allowing anyone to actually catch Pokémon on Google Maps.

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Banish the Monday blues with bunnies! 【Monday Kickstart】

Yep, unfortunately it’s Monday again. It just doesn’t take the hint, does it? It’s like that kid no one ever wants at the party, but who just keeps turning up anyway.

So to ease you on your way into the week, we’ve got some cute little bunnykins who are all dealing with the dreaded Monday in their own special ways.

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You ain’t seen North Korean calisthenics ’til you’ve seen it done to Final Fantasy IV boss music

Every once in a while we experience pleasant beauty of synchronicity in life, whether it’s listening to Pink Flyod’s Dark Side of the Moon while watching The Wizard of OZ or just listening to The Police’s Synchronicity.

Another such case is the uncannily fitting combination of a North Korean calisthenics video for children with the background music to a Final Fantasy IV boss battle. A video of it was posted on YouTube quite a while ago, but it’s worth revisiting again and again.

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Fashion Update: Lobster is the new black

With only a day left before the dreaded sales tax hike in Japan, this is truly the zero hour for you to get your last-minute impulse buys in. And what could be more impulsive than buying this lobster-shaped clutch bag for the low low price 50,400 yen (US$490)!?

It’s not getting any cheaper folks!

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Cup Noodle commercial reveals that the samurai still exist, love idol music

The samurai are one of the most enduring icons of Japanese culture. While anime, manga, and Godzilla are obviously all huge parts of popular Japanese culture that have received attention overseas, the old-school warriors continue to fascinate people of all ages and nationalities. Unfortunately, the real samurai haven’t existed for quite some time, and we’ll never get to see them in action again.

Or will we?!

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Fresh out of a sci-fi film! Make your own “head in a jar”!【Instructions】

April Fools’ Day is just a few days away! Are you prepared for it? Perhaps the pranks we picked out earlier this week were lacking some impact. Well, that’s because we kept the best for last!

If you’re looking for something that will shock the entire family or add a little excitement to your otherwise boring workplace, check out this homemade head in a jar! Be it for April Fools’ or for Halloween, this creepy artifact is bound to raise some hairs, and the best part is, no blood is involved in the making. Instructions after the jump!

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