Hello Kitty Steamed Bun For Sale At Circle K, Too Cute To Eat But Too Tasty Not To

Jack of all trades or slave laborer: call her what you will, there’s just about no job that Hello Kitty won’t do.

Last summer, for example, Hello Kitty surprised fans when she developed a taste for human flesh in her undead debut. Now, Kitty is available in steamed bun form for humanity to turn the tables and feast on her.

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Epic Advertisement Recounts 10 Years in the Life of a Family

We often take the simple invention of the light bulb for granted. Even though our lives have their bright and dark moments, we are always under the reliable warm glow of our lights.

This is the premise of a new commercial by Toshiba, created to promote its new LED light that they claim lasts 10 years, that follows the life of one bulb as it lights a family’s life for 10 years (3653 days including leap years).

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The Most Kick-Ass Cosplay of Comic Market 81!

Comiket 81, the world’s largest self-published comic book fair, was held 29 December, 2011 at Big Sight in Tokyo. Like Comikets before it, the cosplayers came out this year in full force. Yet, among the standard cosplay fair was one who stood out in the crowd like no other.

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Japan Brings Comfort To The Foreign Masses With Shoe-Socks, Socks That Look Like Shoes With Socks

It’s custom in Japan to take off your shoes upon entering a house. This is done mostly to keep floors clean and in good condition, but also because socks and slippers are just more comfortable than shoes.

The Japanese are rather proud of this tradition and often have trouble understanding why people in other countries wouldn’t want to take off their shoes after going inside.

Japanese company Satoyama Socks suspects that many people may just not feel comfortable taking their shoes off while everyone else keeps theirs on.

And that’s why they designed Shoe-Socks.

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Japanese Parents Hit With Up To $1,300 Cell Phone Bill For Free-To-Play Games, Government Steps In

Anyone who has spent time sitting in a Tokyo train knows that the Japanese love their cell phones. From junior high school students to elderly women, it seems that just about everyone is texting, surfing the net or, of course, playing games.

Needless to say, the mobile gaming market is a multi-million dollar operation in Japan and these days most of the profit is made by charging users for special in-game items or features used in free-to-play games, a business model known as ‘Freemium.’

However, the Freemuium model has recently come under criticism in Japan after a flood of complaints from parents saying that their children unknowingly ran bills of up to as much as ¥100,000—nearly $1,300 US—in in-game payments.

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Big Mac Bread: The Flavor Of A Big Mac Value Meal Condensed In A Handy Loaf

We mentioned last month that we were hard at work developing new rice cooker recipes and introduced the culmination of our research thus far: McDonald’s Miracle Steamed Rice, or McMiracle Rice.

Since then, we’ve unfortunately had difficulty reproducing the success of McMiracle Rice with other rice cooker combinations.

This got us thinking: perhaps it was not the cooking method, but the ingredients that made McMiracle Rice taste so good. In other words, maybe we should ditch the rice cooker and just start trying different things with a Big Mac Value Meal.

Now, one month later, we’re pleased to bring you Big Mac Bread.

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Time-Lapse Video Of Comic Convention Crowd Control Shows Japanese Discipline At Its Best

Comic Market (abbreviated as Comiket) is the world’s largest self-published comic book fair, held twice a year in August and December in Tokyo.

This year, the 81st Comiket was held from December 29-31 at the Tokyo Big Sight convention center and drew a crowd of over 500,000 attendees over the course of 3 days. While attendance was about 20,000 less than last year, that’s still about 16,000 people going in and out of the convention center per day.

Luckily, the Japanese are known for their patience and orderly conduct, making it easy for staff to manage the logistics of such an event.

In fact, a video recently uploaded to YouTube shwoing massive crowds of attendees waiting outside the convention hall and following the staff’s directions attests to just how well-disciplined the Japanese really are.

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Japan Tweets Happy New Years 16,197 Times In One Second, Crashes Servers

When the clock strikes midnight on January 1, some people celebrate the New Years by raising their champaign glasses for a toast, some people kiss and some people just yell “Happy New Years!”

During the first few seconds of 2012 in Japan, 16,197 people twat.

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Apple’s Lucky Bag: We Wait In Line 11 Hours New Years Day, Totally Not Worth It

On January 1, customers lined up outside Apple Stores across Japan for the chance to purchase Apple’s elusive ‘Lucky Bag,’ which went on sale the next morning.

‘Lucky Bags’, or Fukubukuro, are sealed bags containing a random assortment of goods offered at a heavily discounted price sold at limited quantities during the first days of the New Year.

Apple’s Lucky Bag, which was priced at 33,000 yen (US $430) this year, has always been extremely popular with customers who hope to find the latest high-tech Apple gadget inside, with the iPad2 and iMac being the top prizes this year.

Your reporter in Tokyo waited in line for 11 hours outside the Shibuya Apple Store to test his luck with the rest of them. Below, I’ve listed the contents of my Lucky Bag along with the retail price of each item.

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Bust-Reducing Bras See Strong Sales In Japan, Women May Prefer Slim Figure Over Big Breasts

Many women look to the padded bra as a quick and easy way to boost their sex appeal, the traditional logic being that men prefer a bigger bust.

However, recent strong sales in Japan of a bra designed to make big breasts look smaller suggests that Japanese women may find a flat chest more flattering.

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Wendy’s Japan Xtreme Taste Test: We Buy One Of Everything On The Menu, 33 Items For $221.09

American fast food chain Wendy’s is back in Japan and already many customers have trekked to the first store in Omotesando. Some very enthusiastic customers even lined up as early as 4 am on opening day!

Now, it’s all well and good that the launch itself was a success—but how about the taste?

Being the champions of journalism that we are, we decided to answer this question by ordering one of everything from the Wendy’s menu and bringing it back to our office for a taste test party!

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A Fast-Food Joint to Visit Before You Die

First Kitchen is a Japanese fast-food chain that has been rapidly expanding in the Kanto and Kinki areas. Readers in Japan have probably been to a First Kitchen at least once, but did you know that there is a branch with phenomenal views that rival high-end resorts and skyscraper restaurants?
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Pictures Of Beautiful 43 Year Old Japanese Model Without Makeup Exposed, Still Way Hotter Than Our Moms

We previously reported on Mizutani Masako, the unbelievably gorgeous 43-year old Japanese mother who—thanks to a 5-hour per day skin care routine—looks half her age.

While pictures of the made-up Mrs. Masako are enough to convince us that she is the world’s most beautiful woman in her 40’s, some of you may be wondering how that goddess-like face holds up after the powder comes off.

After looking at pictures recently posted to her blog of her without makeup, we think it’s safe to say that the makeup was no more than icing on a beautiful, sexy cake.

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About 70km from Fukushima Daiichi, on the boarder of Fukushima and Tochigi prefectures lies the city of Shirakawa. It’s was a pleasant city with lots of green space that was mentioned by Basho in his famous poem The Narrow Road to Oku. Every year they hold the Daruma Ichi festival that celebrates Daruma dolls, traditional toys that symbolize perseverance and good luck.

However now the background radiation is at times 0.60μSv which is about three times the average dose of radiation we receive during our daily lives. Here, a tearful mother of two confesses to reporter investigating financial compensation something that a mother should never have to say: “I wish my daughters were never born.”

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Discovering the Best Strawberry Shortcake in Japan

Japanese strawberry shortcake is different from the kind usually eaten in the United States in that it’s more like an angel food cake with whipped cream icing and sliced strawberries. Amongst Japanese people, strawberry shortcakes are considered a classic dessert. In Sugamo, Tokyo, is a bakery where it is said that the finest shortcakes in Japan are produced. The French Pound House Bakery is found in a quiet residential district, only a five minute walk from JR Sugamo train station.

Because they have received a lot of media exposure, their strawberry shortcake is still their top selling item. Even though they try to keep up with demand, they often run completely out of sponge cake.

For such a good reputation, I felt that it was necessary to find out for myself.

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A long intro talk given by the school principal is unavoidable at any school event. Most of the time, those talks seem to go on forever.

It seems the phenomenon happens in China also. Some students at a Chinese school recently protested against their principal’s long and boring monologue. However, the way they did created some controversy.

It happened at the opening ceremony of Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts in Guang Dong Province. The school principal started his address on the red carpeted stage, when suddenly a group of male students in white t-shirts broke in. They made a straight line facing towards the stage, pulled their shirts up to their faces, and then laid back with their feet turning toward him.

What in the world happened? In China, showing the top in such a manner is meant to represent a dead dog. They said later that was a protest again his long and boring address.

People stopped paying attention to the address and started taking pictures. The somber ceremonial mood broke completely. The principal, in a show of stoic defiance, kept talking in spite of the disturbance.

Students vs Principal. Everybody watched breathlessly to see what would happen next. They realized the concrete they laid down on was so cold that they could not keep going. They ended their protest dismally in the end.

Some of the students that were present for the protest uploaded the incident on the internet. However, most of the comments to the videos are not very supportive. Some examples:
“It’s so abstract. I have no idea what they are trying to say”,
“That must be some kind of artistic statement, but what?”,
“They should have shown the administration some respect as students”.

The school addressed the comments to media with compassion, “Yes, some of our students laid down on the ground during the speech. But they had their own opinion, and they have the freedom to show it…”

Six Business Hotels in Tokyo You Can Spend the Night in For Under 3,500 Yen

When deciding to travel in Japan we are faced with a rather large assortment of hotels that don’t exist in our home countries, one of which is the “business hotel”. The label of business hotel may conjure up images of the infamous “capsule hotels” for some, while for other’s it may have the sense of a dank, narrow, room that was occupied by the cast of Mad Men. I suspected such things at first until, in an effort to save money, I bit the bullet and tried a few out.

I can now confidently say that despite their label, business hotels are actually rather comfy – some of them downright elegant!

These hotels don’t skimp on the amenities. For instance, it wouldn’t be hard to find a business hotel that offers air conditioning, humidifier, or even an air purifier. Most have fairly spacious bathrooms and offer a complimentary breakfast. Even if you are just looking for a place to have a brief romantic rendezvous, a business hotel can be a cheaper alternative to a dingy motel or robotic love hotel.

Let’s take a look at 6 prime business hotels that can be found in the Tokyo area. All hotels charge rates less than 3,500 yen (US$44.80) per person when two people are staying in the room at a rate of 7,000 yen total ($89.60).

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Wendy’s Strikes Back In Japan With Foie Gras, Wasabi Avacado. Wendy-chan Spotted Loitering Outside New Store At 4AM

American fast-food chain Wendy’s is back in Japan!

The flagship store opened at midnight on December 27 in Omotesandō, Tokyo, two years after the company had pulled out of the market due to falling profits.

We headed out at 4AM to see the Wendy’s for ourselves and when we arrived, TV stations were preparing their cameras to cover the burger chain’s grand re-opening.

It looks like Wendy’s will have some media coverage to help it get its name out there, but will Japanese customers heed the call?

There was already one person lining up outside by the time we arrived, though we have reason to believe that she may be just a little biased.

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Ever since the Great Tohoku Earthquake led to one of the worst nuclear disasters at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant people have been left with a lot of uncertainty. Information has not been coming from places of authority in a free and timely fashion. News broadcasts often tell stories of contaminated food and radioactive puddles near schools. Still, these stories are after the fact and often hard to process given the complex nature of radiation.

Luckily, on 27 December, Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute (KURRI) announced they are working with Fukushima Transportation Inc. to begin testing a system to monitor radiation in Fukushima City that is in real time and is accessible by anyone over the internet.

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Chinese Message Boards Warn Citizens of Stairs that Look Like Escalator; Number of Embarrassed Shoppers Expected to Reach the Hundred Thousands

Every once in a while I come across an escalator that seems out of order. But upon taking my first disappointed step to walk up, the elevator gently shakes to life and carries me triumphantly the rest of the way thinking “How do they know?”

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