Tokyo shop makes ramen for foreigners by adding sugar, something called “Japanese sprit!!”

Tokyo shop makes ramen for foreigners by adding sugar, something called “Japanese sprit!!”

With the 2020 Olympics on the horizon, restaurateurs in Tokyo are already thinking about how they can appeal to the crowds of foreign tourists set to descend on the city. Most of them are focusing on spiffing up their English menus and adding pictures, but some eateries are actually cooking up new menu ideas to appeal to the non-Japanese palate.

We got word that a ramen shop in Shinjuku had concocted just such a dish, so we naturally went to check it out.

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Move over itasha, here come itachoko – anime chocolates!

Move over itasha, here come itachoko – anime chocolates!

In recent years, itasha, cars emblazoned with admirably detailed yet painfully nerdy vinyl graphics inspired by anime and manga, have been getting more and more mainstream attention. But what if you’re not old enough to drive, or you just want to express your admiration for your favorite 2-D character without spending hundreds of dollars creating a car that your friends or date will be too embarrassed to ride in?

In that case, why not turn to the world of itachoko, chocolates decorated with anime character likenesses?

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Adding a mosaic makes almost anything NSFW

Adding a mosaic makes almost anything NSFW

Ah, the power of the mosaic – that little clump of pixels used by news networks to blur out the faces of anonymous sources and by Japanese porn producers to conceal people’s sexy parts. They can pretty convincingly hide most sensitive visuals from public scrutiny, while still offering us just a little tantalizing glimpse of the features beneath.

They can also, it turns out, serve as a pretty good litmus test for how gutter-minded you are; because when applied to everyday scenes, such as chefs preparing meals, athletes celebrating victories, even something as innocuous as folks making pottery, the scenes are suddenly transformed into something that appear, at first glance, much dirtier than they should.

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Werewolf cat! Spooky new feline equal parts cute and creepy 【Photos】

Werewolf cat! Spooky new feline equal parts cute and creepy 【Photos】

You might have seen something—or someone?!—like the guy above prowling in the moonlight, but I’m afraid he’s not proof of the supernatural, he’s just a new breed of cat called a Lykoi, or “wolf” in Greek. Of course, most people are just calling the breed what it looks like: a werewolf cat!

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List of anime directors fans expect the most from topped by….Goro Miyazaki?!

List of anime directors fans expect the most from topped by….Goro Miyazaki?!

It’s been almost half a year since Studio Ghibli founder Hayao Miyazaki announced his retirement from animation direction, leaving a empty seat at the top of Japan’s pile of anime talent. Miyazaki himself has even voiced his concerns about whether or not his juniors in the industry will be able to replicate the results that Studio Ghibli achieved when he was at the helm.

With the medium in a state of uncertainty, Japanese telecom provider NTT Docomo asked fans which director they expected to pick up the banner of the Japanese animation industry. Their surprising answer? Hayao Miyazaki’s son, Goro.

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6 strange laws to take note of before embarking on your worldly travels

6 strange laws to take note of before embarking on your worldly travels

Who doesn’t love a good vacation? Particularly for working adults, it’s the only time we can take a step back from our hectic work lives, unleash the wild-child within us, and perhaps do something silly without worrying about (too many) repercussions since we’ll be jetting off in a couple of days.

But wait, hold your horses! The last thing you would want to do on an overseas vacation is to unknowingly breach the law, right? Some of the things that we normally do in our homeland might be illegal in other parts of the world. Things as normal as ladies wearing pants. Strange, huh? There’s more coming up!

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Figure-skating silver medalist Chan prepared by drumming to K-ON!

Figure-skating silver medalist Chan prepared by drumming to K-ON!

It’s not just gold medalist Yuzuru Hanyū who has won the hearts of anime fans. 23-year-old Canadian figure skater and Olympic silver medalist Patrick Chan seems to be a K-ON! fan himself. He personally posted a YouTube video of himself preparing for his 2011 trip to Japan — by drumming along to the anime’s opening:

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Chocolate kakigori may be delicious, but looks like flaming pile of poo

Chocolate kakigori may be delicious, but looks like flaming pile of poo

A restaurant in the trendy Shimokitazawa neighborhood of Tokyo thought they would get into the spirit of Valentine’s Day by offering a limited edition chocolate kakigori, a traditional Japanese snack that involves putting toppings on shaved ice. There was only one small problem…

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Young man collapses a lung from yawning too hard, and so can you

Young man collapses a lung from yawning too hard, and so can you

It’s a Monday and you might find yourself struggling to get back into work mode from the weekend. Sitting in your workspace you feel the urge to stretch your mouth into a satisfying yawn.

If you happen to be a tall thin man in young adulthood, STOP! That innocent little stretch might turn into something much more painful and kind of gross. Such and incident happened to a 26-year-old Chinese man last month.

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There’s snow in my kitchen! Heaviest snowfall on record brings Yamanashi Prefecture to its knees

There’s snow in my kitchen! Heaviest snowfall on record brings Yamanashi Prefecture to its knees

We’ve already seen Hokkaido residents putting a damper on the fuss Tokyo-ites are making over a bit of snow, but Yamanashi Prefecture genuinely might be able to give them a run for their money. Huge amounts of the white stuff has been causing problems across the prefecture, but has been comparatively underreported compared to events around the capital.

Residents have been taking to Twitter to share these shocking images that aren’t making it onto the news. Check out these rather epic photos.

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Kind-hearted deliverymen hand out truckload of bread to snow-stranded motorists

Kind-hearted deliverymen hand out truckload of bread to snow-stranded motorists

Last Friday the biggest snowstorm of the last decade hit the Tokyo area. While neighborhood kids had fun building snowmen and couples who managed to meet up could enjoy snuggling up to each other for warmth on a white Valentine’s Day (not to be confused with White Day, which is a totally separate thing in Japan), actually trying to get from one part of the region to another was a major gamble.

Some of the worst off were drivers along the Chuo Expressway that runs through mountainous Yamanashi Prefecture into Tokyo. With the storm dropping over 100 centimeters (39.4 inches) of snow in Yamanashi, over 60 sections of the road were closed due to the unsafe driving conditions. Since most people don’t carry a bottle of snow cone syrup in their glove box, as time went by, the motorists became hungrier and hungrier, until some philanthropic baked goods deliverymen came to their rescue.

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Oni-kyan wheel alignment: How to drift like the pros and baffle the spectators

Oni-kyan wheel alignment: How to drift like the pros and baffle the spectators

Motorsports have been around for as long as people have had vehicles. If it’s got an engine and wheels, we guarantee someone somewhere will try to race it. And there aren’t many counties that love their motorsports as much as Japan–especially the mystical, magical art of drifting!

While other places may have longer or faster races, Japan is definitely one of the best places in the world to catch cars sliding through corners almost as if they were on an ice rink. And, while a talented driver could probably get nearly any car to drift, racers often use cars modified for maximum drifting, including things like negative camber, a type of wheel alignment. But one Celica owned by Japanese motor-enthusiast Kawashima has been capturing people’s attention both in Japan and overseas thanks its mind-bending, extreme wheel alignment.

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Why a Korean speed skating star changed his name and started racing for Russia

Why a Korean speed skating star changed his name and started racing for Russia

Twelve years ago, South Korea’s Ahn Hyun-soo crashed into Apolo Ohno a few feet from the finish line in the men’s short track 1000m at the Olympics.

It sparked an intense rivalry between the two skaters that peaked at the 2006 Olympics in Turin, where Hyun-soo won three gold medals to Ohno’s one.

On Saturday night in Sochi, the Hyun-soo won gold again. But now his name is Viktor Ahn, and he skates for Russia.

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8 reasons to visit this bizarre Buddhism theme park

8 reasons to visit this bizarre Buddhism theme park

At any amusement park run by the “big two” – Disney or Universal Studios – you can be whisked away to a picturesque fairytale castle, or live out scenes from your favourite movies. But what if what you really want is to ride through the depths of hell and then go alligator fishing? Suoi Tien Cultural Amusement Park, located on the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City, is a mammoth of a theme park that delights and baffles in equal measure. Read on for our eight reasons not to miss out!

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Ah My Goddess, Patlabor artists draw figure-skating gold medalist Hanyū

Ah My Goddess, Patlabor artists draw figure-skating gold medalist Hanyū

19-year-old male figure skater Yuzuru Hanyū won the hearts of fans in Japan and across the globe this week. It’s not just his Olympic gold medal in Men’s Free Skating that has everyone talking. Hanyū also bears a striking resemblance to Neon Genesis Evangelion Shinji Ikari. Viewers are also fans of his cute Winnie the Pooh tissue cozy.

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Angry Korean fans not satisfied by apology from British skater who cost their country a gold medal

Angry Korean fans not satisfied by apology from British skater who cost their country a gold medal

While the primary goal of the Olympics is to bring athletes from various nations together for a friendly demonstration of the greatness that can be achieved by the human body, the Games are also a contest to answer the question of just who is the best in the world in its events. The dedication and hard work necessary to even qualify as an Olympic athlete doesn’t come without an extremely strong desire to win, and the competitive juices naturally flow all the stronger for events that don’t get a lot of attention outside of this once every four years opportunity to shine.

But the glory of victory is coupled to the agony of defeat, and Olympic athletes represent entire nations of sports enthusiasts, who sometimes take the defeat of their countries’ athletes with even more bitterness than the competitors themselves. Such is the aftermath surrounding the speed skating collision involving British Elise Christie and Korean Park Seung Hi.

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Anything is fair game for advertisement trucks in Tokyo

Anything is fair game for advertisement trucks in Tokyo

If you spend some time walking around the Shibuya, Shinjuku, or Ikebukuro districts of Tokyo, at some point you’re bound to spot a lavishly decorated truck blasting music from its speakers. These “ad trucks” as they’re known in Japanese are just what they sound  like – gigantic, mobile billboards with no purpose other than to drive around promoting the latest music and products. While these trucks do raise some legitimate environmental concerns, there’s no denying that this eye-catching (and deafening) marketing strategy is an effective way to grab everyone’s attention. Keep reading after the jump to view some photographic examples of ad trucks in action. You might be surprised by some of the wacky and suggestive things they can get away with!

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【Obituary】 Giant isopod “No.1″ found dead after more than five years of not eating

【Obituary】 Giant isopod “No.1″ found dead after more than five years of not eating

On 14 February at Toba Aquarium, the giant isopod that captured the imaginations of a nation was found dead in its tank by keepers and media. This brings to an end the record-setting hunger strike No.1 had been waging since 2009.

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Japanese blogger calls for party to celebrate Hitler’s birthday, whines when criticized

Japanese blogger calls for party to celebrate Hitler’s birthday, whines when criticized

Though it’s not something we think about often, Japan has a number of very strange and ardent groups of ultra-right-wing conservatives. You can often catch them riding around in black vans or stinking up online forums denouncing pretty much everything. The ideology that each of the groups expresses tends to vary, though rabid nationalism and emperor-worship are typical.

Some of them also apparently love the Nazis–and one of them, one Hiroyuki Seto, has even called on people to join him for a party celebrating Adolf Hitler’s birthday. “Crazier than a barrel of monkeys” is an appropriate description…

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