Bottles? We Don’t Need No Stinking Bottles! In China Everyone Carries Cucumbers to Beat the Heat

In these dog days of summer it’s a pretty good idea to carry around a bottle of water or sports drink to stay safe from heat stroke.  However, in China, home of the melt-proof ice pop, people are into a much more low tech way to keep cool.

One of our reporters was standing at a traffic signal in Shanghai when he spotted an attractive businesswoman rummaging through her purse.  Finding what she was looking for, she pulled out a huge cucumber and started munching on it as nonchalantly as one would drink a cup of coffee from Starbuck’s.  Mildly aroused, he decided to investigate this spontaneous act more deeply.

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“A 10 Year History of Stitch” Offers Fans of the Blue Rascal More than They Could Hope For

Tottori is a prefecture in western Japan famous mostly for some really large sand dunes and not much else.  Well, actually it’s also the birthplace of many famous manga writers and artists like Shigeru Mizuki, leading to the creation of promanga organization, Manga Kingdom Tottori, whose goal is to make Tottori a funner place through manga.

Their most recent project is an exhibition dedicated to international comics called Tottori Manga Dream World that spans three venues around Tottori.  Also, throughout the latter half of 2012, they will be hosting a special exhibit featuring Japan’s favorite Disney Character, Stitch.

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Chinese Public Pool is Aquatic Hell of Urine and Feces

Nothing beats the summer heat like a day at the pool…thought everyone in China, apparently, judging from these pictures posted to Chinese message board site Tiē Tiē.

It looks like pool visitors hardly have any room to move, let alone swim. Really they’re just soaking shoulder-to-shoulder in a giant soup of chlorinated water and each other’s filth. But that’s what public pools are all about, right?

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Sakhalin as Seen From a Japanese Tourist in 42 Points

Sakhalin is a large and sparsely populated island in the North Pacific, lying directly North of Japan and East of Russia. While it currently belongs to the latter, the island was the source of a bitter territorial dispute between the two countries throughout the 19th and 20th centuries.

Getting into Sakhalin as a tourist can be rather difficult due to the restrictions set by the Russian government, which is why, despite the island’s proximity to Japan, Japanese and other foreign tourists are few and far between. While you can find tours of historical remains from Japanese occupation and landmarks visited by famous Japanese author Kenji Miyazawa, you’ll need quite a bit of cash and patience to get there in the first place.

One of our Japanese correspondents recently returned from a trip to Sakhalin and shares with us his rather random thoughts on the Russian island in convenient numbered list form.

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20 Guilt Free Snacks With Only A Hundred Calories

Imagine, if you will, a conversation in your Pilattes studio or gym locker room, or even on the train in any city in Japan, between two slender women, whom nobody would ever guess to be worried about their weight.  These women could be any age, married, single, with or without children, the point being that they are slender.

“I’m getting fat!  I really have to watch what I eat!”

“Me too!  My weakness is snacks I can’t help eating snacks!”

“Oh, guess what?  I found an article on RocketNews 24 about ‘diet snack food’!  It introduces 20 of them, I’m pretty sure it says they are no more than 100 calories each!”

Two heads meet in the center to gaze over an i-phone. Read More

Cigarette Carton Airplanes Now Trending on Japanese Nets

Most people have made paper airplanes before but how about cigarette box airplanes?

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Molted Insect Skins Are so in This Summer: Japanese Entertainer Shokotan Sports Exotic Headwear

TV personality, outspoken otaku, avid cosplayer, diligent blogger: Japanese celebrity Shoko Nakagawa, or Shokotan, as she is lovingly referred to by fans, is known for many things. Normality is not one of them.

Exhibit A: On August 11, the quirky entertainer posted a series of pictures to her blog of herself covered in molted insect shells.

We think that should be sufficient evidence.

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The Very Bitter Gourd ‘Goya’ Ripens into a Sweet Treat!

The goya represents summer in Japan in many ways.  This bitter gourd is a staple of Okinawa cuisine with a tropical image, its bitterness is celebrated as one of the healthiest foods around.  If you can stand the bitterness then it is excellent for the skin, a beauty aide for women!

The ever popular ‘green curtain’, which is a vine plant grown on netting over windows to keep out the heat, often consists of goya plants.  The leaves grow thick and can keep direct sunlight out considerably saving on cooling costs!

Goya growers and super markets throw out the over-ripe goya when it yellows, I suppose because it stops being the well-loved summer vegetable we all know.

But wait!  If you let it ripen, it turns into a bright yellow sweet fruit!  WOW!  Where did that bitterness go?
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Filipinos Remarkably Upbeat During Massive Flood

On 6 August a large part of the Philippines was hit with approximately half a month’s worth of rain inside a period of 24 hours causing severe flooding.  The capital city, Manila was among the many regions affected.

The death toll as of this writing has reached 60.  But what is amazing about this catastrophe beyond its scale is the resilience of the Filipino spirit, as illustrated in these surreal photos and videos.

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How Many Winks Can You Expect to Catch with these Blindfolds? Over NINE THOUSAAAAAAND!

Have trouble getting to sleep? The sensory depriving qualities of a sleep mask might be just what you’re looking for.  Sure, you may think eye masks are for wealthy dowagers and other fuddy-duddies. However, these masks cater to the hip, urbanite otaku in all of us with patterns ranging from mainstream (Sailor Moon) to the obscure (Black Butler).

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Interested in Android OS but Don’t Want to Commit to a Smart Phone?  Well, Take This Stick and Shove It Up Your HDMI Port

Looking at the picture you might think this is another run-of-the-mill USB stick when in fact it’s so much more.  For starters that’s a HDMI port on the end not USB.  And while it does have 4GB memory on it, this stick is also hauling a 1GHz processor, 512MB of DDR3 RAM, and Android 4.0 – all for use on your TV.

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Chinese Businessman Develops Doomsday Escape Pod

A Businessman from Yiwu, China recently unveiled his disaster survival invention labeled as “China’s Noah’s Ark.” However, the other side is labeled “Atlantis” which makes me wonder about his knowledge of ancient myths.

Although it lacks the sleek design of the original ark, this orange ball is claimed to be shock-proof, water-proof, fire-proof, and radiation-proof.

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Man Forced to Choose Between Mother and Wife Drowning at the Same Time, China Continues to Become the Home of Hypothetical Situations Come to Life

One of the amazing things about China is that with its massive population of 1.3 billion, strange events tend to happen with more frequency than other countries. And they’re usually the kind of strange events imagined during late night drinking sessions. For example, someone falls into a pit of human feces. Who in your neighborhood would be the first person to jump in to save them?  Happened in China.  Your boyfriend stole your money so he could buy you presents.  What would you do? Happened in China.

Now your wife and your mother are both drowning. Who do you save? This also happened in China a few weeks ago, and not everyone agrees with the man’s decision.

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Panda Onigiri Are Too Cute to Eat, We Do So Anyways

As a rule of thumb, if you want to cuten something up, add some panda. Just look at these panda rice balls (onigiri). There is no other animal on this planet that can make a ball of white rice look this adorable.

We know what you’re thinking: “Sure they’re cute, and I’d love to make them myself, but don’t you need the dexterity of a Japanese ninja housewife to do so?

Not anymore you don’t! The panda rice balls you see above were actually made by one of our Japanese reporters (single, female, hasn’t made a bento in 5 years) with the help of the fabulous “Panda Onigiri Set,” which can be purchased for around $13 from sites like Bento & co or JBOX.

Already own a Panda Onigiri Set but are having trouble getting your rice balls to look like the ones in the picture? RocketNews24 is here to pander to your needs with our step-by-step guide to making adorable panda onigiri!

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Ride a Real Sushi Train! The Newest Attraction at the Hamanako PalPal Amusement Park

The first sushi train themed ride in Japan!

This is one ride we would like to try at least once before we die. The newest attraction at the Hamanako PalPal amusement park in Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka Prefecture allows you to ride on a piece of sushi. The name of the attraction?“Ride on the sushi and spin around!”
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Possum Cat Plays Dead(?) in the Heat [Video]

Summer can be tough. Some days are so hot that it’s difficult to do much more than idly lie there as the heat drains you of your energy. And just imagine how bad it is if you’re covered in fur.

At first glance this kitty is just sprawled out on a sofa, but as the camera moves around (up and down, circling around, even going right up to the cat’s face), you’ll notice that it doesn’t even move its eyes.

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If you don’t live in Hokkaido, Japanese summers are hot and humid! A good way to stay cool, other than staying in a confined room where air-conditioned air is piped out from a room cooler, is to use a uchiwa. It only takes just a little muscle to keep a constant breeze and recently there are highly functional ones that will help send cool air your way!

Stainless Steel type, put it in the Freezer!

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A Remarkable Moment When There Were Six Rings!

Did you do a double take too?  Yes!  The Olympic rings are six instead of five!  But wait!  That sixth ring is the moon!  WOW!  How beautiful!  And it fit perfectly as the sixth ring, only for a moment though, caught in this picture perfectly!

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There’s Something About Sawa

As the Japanese women’s soccer team walks away from the London Olympics with a respectable yet somewhat regrettable silver medal, many of them will return to a normal life.

For Homare Sawa, the national team’s top scorer and Fifa’s Woman Player of the Year, this means she can finally get back to her secondary claim to fame – sex symbol.  If there’s one thing international fame has brought to Sawa, it is an expanded legion of men who would like to spend some time together.

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