Japanese Twitter user discovers the perfect Halloween decoration in the form of…a flower?!

Who’s afraid of the big bad…flower?! Sure, we’ve seen the pitch-black Turkish rose that would harmonize perfectly with the home decor of any hardcore heavy metal fan…but we never thought that a flower could be downright terrifying! The following pictures posted by one Twitter user prove that Mother Nature has cooked up some pretty creepy recipes. You might even have nightmares after seeing what this certain kind of flower looks like after wilting. On the bright side, you can make a veritable Halloween bouquet!

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In a shocking twist, some idol singers really will go out with you if you buy their albums

When you really stop and think about it, the concept of idol singers is a little strange. At its core, the idea is to leverage the performers’ good looks into higher sales than they could achieve through their musical talents alone.

We realize that in face-to-face dealings, there’s very little a guy won’t do for a pretty girl, if for no reason other than to raise his chances of getting a date with her by even the tiniest fraction of a percentage. But does it really make sense for hard-core fans to try to impress their idol of choice? Regardless of how many copies of your favorite singer’s albums you buy, it’s not like she’s going to go out with you or anything.

Unless, of course, you’re talking about the idol group AeLL.

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Why your cat hates baths, but is fascinated by the bathtub

If there’s one thing internet videos have taught us, it’s that cats can be skittish around water. But why do animals that spend seemingly all day grooming themselves freak out when their tail gets a bit wet? And why do some cats seem to be obsessed with the bathtub?

Japanese site My Navi put their investigative hats on and came up with a three-part theory for cats’ apparent love of the shower room, but fear of water. Today, we take a look at their findings, and add a few suggestions of our own!

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North Korea calls US the ‘World’s Worst Human Rights Abuser’

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (C) guides the multiple-rocket launching drill of women’s sub-units under KPA Unit 851, in this undated photo released by North Korea’s Korean Central News Agency (KCNA)

North Korea called the United States “a living hell” while offering a comprehensive listing of criticisms against the country it called “the world’s worst human rights abuser” in a news report from state-run media Wednesday.

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.

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“Neko nabe” – Cute cats napping in pots and pans 【Photos】

Anyone who has ever owned a cat will know of their fondness for boxes, pots, pans, and bags — if an object can in any way become a bed, fort, or platform to sit on, they’ll claim it. They are also, as cat owners will no doubt have noticed, at once both deceptively long animals (when they stretch out or are held vertically, they magically unfold like some kind of fur-covered extendable ladder) and yet can squeeze into some of the smallest spaces imaginable.

With that in mind, and because a) it’s the weekend and b) they’re just so cute, here’s a little selection of photos of cats making pots their own.

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BuzzFeed’s image of post-beer ramen in Japan is soberingly off base【Video】

A few months ago, BuzzFeed posted a video titled What Does the World Eat for Breakfast? The video’s representative morning meal for the United States – pancakes, eggs, and bacon – was an old-fashioned if not inaccurate choice, but we couldn’t say the same thing about the funky menu selected for Japan, which was unlike anything anyone on our team, Japanese natives included, had ever started their day with.

So when we heard the same crew was back with a new video about post-drinking foods from around the world, and that once again Japan was featured, we were both a little honored to be included, and a little worried about what would end up on the plate this time.

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Internet falls in love with Chinese cosplaying beauty, disappointed to hear she’s a guy 【Updated】

Love-struck netizens across China, Taiwan and Japan have been voicing their disappointment after finding out that the exceptionally cute girl pictured above is actually an exceptionally cute boy. This isn’t the first time this kind of switcheroo has happened (it’s quite common actually) but netizens seem to be especially upset this time around. Maybe it’s this young man’s choice of outfit (characters from the light novel The “Hentai” Prince and the Stony Cat.) or maybe it’s just how different his before and after photos are, but one things for sure: this cosplayer is a total hottie.

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Import immediately! The top 3 Japanese chain restaurants

The first McDonald’s opened in 1940 and since that time it has grown to 35,000+ locations worldwide. Its popularity is international with people craving their “Mackers” or “McDs” or “Maccas”, so it’s no surprise how popular McDonald’s is in Japan. Would it work in reverse? What chain restaurants from Japan would be popular in the States? Our famous friend Ike, from the comedy group Choshinjuku tells us which three chain restaurants he loves the most in Japan.

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Is British food really that bad? Our Japanese writer tries her hand at some UK dishes

Japanese people seem to love telling me that British food is terrible, and the only good thing we have going for us is fish and chips. No one can believe that I actually get a bit tired of Japanese food and pine for my favourite dishes from home! Perhaps to try and change this perception, the British Embassy has been undertaking a campaign called ‘Food is GREAT!’ (for Great Britain, geddit?), and our Japanese writer decided to put some of their recipes to the test.

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Disney XD to run Doraemon anime in U.S. this summer

The financial news source Nikkei reported on Friday that the American media conglomerate Walt Disney will begin running the quintessential Japanese anime Doraemon on television throughout the United States this summer. 44 years after the original manga about a robotic cat from the future debuted, the anime has already aired in 35 countries and territories in Southeast Asia and elsewhere. However, this will be the first television showing of Doraemon in the United States.

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Amazing shows of craftsmanship to make you feel woefully unaccomplished

It’s our opinion that everybody needs at least one good hobby that they can really devote themselves to. Being good at something other than sitting at a desk and banging out Excel spreadsheets will not only make you feel more whole as a person, it’s also pretty sexy when you can whip out a guitar and casually riff out “just something you thought up over the weekend.”

The sexy part doesn’t really apply to, say, basket weaving, but hey, if it fulfills you personally, have at it.

Of course, we wasted our innate writing talents on weird Asia news and useless listicles instead of polishing up our young adult vampire novel writing skills, so when we saw this huge collection of people who are really, really, really good at one particular craft, it sort of made us feel a deep existential sadness as we reflected on what we could have been doing if we’d just applied ourselves.

So, beware, unless you’ve already mastered an impressive hobby yourself, these amazing shows of craftmanship will probably make you feel like a horrible waste of flesh:

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Nine reasons why Japanese men hesitate to say “I love you”

Whenever someone asks me, “How do you say ‘I love you’ in Japanese?” I’m always at a loss for what to say. In short, there is no good Japanese equivalent. Textbooks and other resources will tell you to say ai shiteru, but in reality this phrase is used very rarely due to cultural and linguistic differences. You would never throw it around casually throughout the day to your friends or family in the way that English speakers use “I love you.” More appropriate perhaps is the phrase suki da, which translates roughly to a strong “I like you” in a platonic or romantic sense. Either way, the specific connotations of each saying get lost in translation.

Enter Sugoren, a Japanese dating advice site. Earlier this year they conducted an online survey asking 165 bachelors in their teens and twenties to provide reasons why they don’t say ai shiteru to their girlfriends. Based on the results, they were able to compile a list of nine common patterns that prevent men from saying ai shiteru. If you’re dating a Japanese man and have yet to hear the fabled words, you may find yourself in one of the situations below!

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Trailer released for live-action version of street gang anime Tokyo Tribe 【Video】

This year is shaping up to be the year of live-action anime adaptations. First up is the second installment of samurai action series Rurouni Kenshin, which opens August 1 and is followed in rapid succession by the trilogy’s finale on September 13. August 30 sees the long-awaited return of the band of thieves from Lupin III, which hasn’t been attempted with live actors for three decades.

And now there’s one more group of manga-originating criminals coming to the big screen — the live-action version of ultra-violent gang story Tokyo Tribe.

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Nintendo celebrates its roots with traditional art of their most famous characters

With global phenomenon like the Mario and Pokemon franchises under their belts, it’s easy to forget about Nintendo’s humble beginnings as a producer of traditional Japanese playing cards. This year the company goes back to their roots in their 2014 company brochure with beautiful artwork that celebrates both the old and the new.

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A tale of two tonkatsu burgers – We pit McDonald’s pork cutlet sandwich against Mos Burger’s

Here at RocketNews24, we’re all about forming stronger connections between Japan and the rest of the world. Incidentally, we’re also all about burgers and fried foods.

Sometimes, the planets align just right, and we get to check all three boxes at once, like we did today with our taste-test of McDonald’s new pork cutlet burger, a Westernized version of Japanese dish inspired by Western cuisine. And since the only thing better than a fried pork sandwich is two fried pork sandwiches, we’ll be comparing it to the nearly identical menu item from hometown hero Mos Burger.

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Taxi driver arrested after slipping female passengers drugs so he could watch them pee

A taxi driver in Osaka has been taken into police custody after it was discovered that he had given snacks laced with a powerful diuretic to as many as 50 of his female passengers and refused to let them exit the vehicle so that he could watch them squirm, and in some cases urinate, in the back of his cab.

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Kagawa’s “Udon Generator” begins pumping out the most delicious kilowatts you’ve ever tasted

Actually never mind that, tasting any wattage isn’t really recommended, despite my own preference for licking 9V batteries. Nevertheless, a power source fueled largely by Japan’s girthy noodles called udon is now currently in operation in Takamatsu City, Kagawa Prefecture.

Although generating power from bio-organic sources is nothing new, it seems this plant-based plant has found a way to be sustainable using a peculiar quirk of Kagawa’s udon rich culture.

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We eat the Attack on Titan instant curry, plus make our own edible Titans

Sometimes, you don’t realize how much you’ll miss something until it’s gone. A few months back, hungry Attack on Titan fans could get both hamburgers and bento boxed lunches inspired by the hit series. They were only available for a limited time though, and both are gone now, leaving us without a way to simultaneously satisfy our cravings for giant-fighting anime and a quick, hot meal.

That is, until the release of a new line of Attack on Titan instant curry. We got our hands on a pack, then created a batch of edible Titans to go with it.

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Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who’s the baldest of them all? Japan top for male baldness in Asia

There are a number of theories regarding the causes of male pattern baldness. Some suggest that one’s diet and stress levels play key roles. Others feel that regular exercise will help keep locks thick and plentiful until well after retirement. Most would agree, though, that our genes hold the most sway, and if a man loses his hair then chances are his son, too, will have increasingly more face to wash as he ages.

Baldness affects some more than others, however, and a survey by Trip Advisor Japan has revealed the countries where male baldness is most common, with Japan found to have more bald men than any other Asian country.

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Cultural differences spoiling the sing-along version of Frozen for some fans

Disney’s Frozen is a big hit in Japan, where it’s known as Anna and the Snow Queen. It’s not such a big surprise, as Japan’s always had a soft spot for Disney and stories about the power of friendship and family, and the film’s lack of dramatic, showy romance also fits in nicely with Japanese narrative sensibilities.

So when Disney decided to bring the sing-along version of Frozen to theatres in Japan, a country where you’re never more than a few minutes from a place to sing karaoke, you’d think it’d be an amazingly enjoyable experience for moviegoers. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like that’s always the case.

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