If only all these people weren’t here… Commuters are the cause of problems according JR sign

If only all these people weren’t here… Commuters are the cause of problems according JR sign

Recently, a Twitter user snapped a photo of an interesting sign on their train platform. The station worker at this particular stop might need to review their basic Japanese grammar.
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Sakurajima’s 500th eruption this year goes off with a bang and a huge cloud of ash

Sakurajima’s 500th eruption this year goes off with a bang and a huge cloud of ash

When it comes to terrifying displays of the power of Mother Nature, Japan never fails to deliver. These incredible photos capture the volcanic eruption off the coast of Kyuushu yesterday afternoon.

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Horse blinders for students? Cheating prevention tool at university in Thailand met with criticism

Horse blinders for students? Cheating prevention tool at university in Thailand met with criticism

A new method of cheating prevention at a university in Thailand has been met with criticism according to a recent report from Newsclip. The tool employs a white paper headband with two large pieces of paper attached to the sides, preventing students from peeking at their neighbor’s answers.

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Malaysian mother wows Japan with meals that are too cute to eat!

Malaysian mother wows Japan with meals that are too cute to eat!

Kyara-ben, boxed bento lunches featuring cute comic characters, have been around in Japan for some time. Usually created by housewives with a lot of time and skill on their hands, getting to feast on one in person, though, is about as difficult as nailing jelly to a tree. So it’s no surprise that people in Japan were green with envy when they caught sight of these adorable meals. Created by a Malaysian mother of two of the luckiest daughters in the world, these plates of healthy cuteness have earned her a huge fanbase, with more than 250, 000 followers eagerly keeping track of the new creations as they appear on her Instagram account. From Lady Gaga to Batman, no feast is too difficult for this artistic mum!

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It’s an epidemic! Worldwide freezer diving!

It’s an epidemic! Worldwide freezer diving!

Avid readers of RocketNews24 might have noticed our series of articles earlier this month about Japan’s latest fad, freezer diving. This year’s summer heat wave has inspired a whole string of idiotic people to climb into convenience store freezers as a way to beat the blazing weather.

Now, whether it’s a result of Japanese media hype or individual inspiration, pictures of people inside fridges and freezers are popping up all over the world. The latest country to join in the craze was China.

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If you thought the Teletubbies were creepy before…

If you thought the Teletubbies were creepy before…

Something always trouble me about Teletubbies with their missing eyebrows, that laughing baby sun, and always insisting on watching videos twice in quick succession (seriously, where were they the first annoying time?).

If you’re among the few who still find these kids’ TV characters adorable, then this photo from China titled “Teletubbies decorating car window with mold growing” should bring you quickly over to the dark side. But beyond the initial shock of seeing these beloved infant heroes in such a state, there seems to be something more going on in this photo.

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10 surprising lifestyle habits of Japanese savers: Why are men who throw things out good with money?

10 surprising lifestyle habits of Japanese savers: Why are men who throw things out good with money?

An online survey was recently carried out on 100 Japanese men in their 30s with an annual salary of 6 million yen (US$61,000) or less who have nevertheless managed to amass more than their annual income in savings, and the results were really quite surprising. The men’s answers seem to overturn the common wisdom on how to save money, resulting in a list of characteristics that natural savers share.

I always imagined thrifty types would hang on to all their old junk in case it came in handy, but for some reason, the men who have proved themselves to be great at saving money also tend to excel at throwing things away and… reading maps.

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No instruments? No problem! Tokyo musicians use ordinary kitchenware to make sweet music

No instruments? No problem! Tokyo musicians use ordinary kitchenware to make sweet music

Proving that life on a budget doesn’t necessarily mean one without song, Tokyo-based musicians Sou and Kumama are on a mission to make everyone, and everything, sing. In this video, the quirky duo use nothing more than a pair of wooden spoons and an array of cheap, store-bought dishes to produce a startlingly high-quality rendition of none other than Mozart’s “Turkish March”.

Check out the full, insanely catchy video after the jump.

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We try to hammer a nail into a board using a popular Japanese summer treat

We try to hammer a nail into a board using a popular Japanese summer treat

A few days ago we reported on a series of whimsical Twitter warnings issued by Imuraya, makers of the Adzuki Bar. The tweets all advise consumers of the famous frozen sweet bean snacks that “Adzuki Bars are seriously hard, so watch your teeth!”

But how hard are they really? Hard enough to, say, drive a nail through a piece of wood? Our reporter Usagi-chan decided to find out.

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The street art at this year’s culture festival in Beijing will blow your mind

The street art at this year’s culture festival in Beijing will blow your mind

As part of The Fourth Qianmen Historical & Cultural Festival, the streets of China’s capital city have been transformed this month by a group of talented artists. Using the pavement and plain stone walls as canvases, the artists have produced an array of incredible 3-D paintings that is wowing both tourists and locals alike, with photos of the jaw-dropping work being shared all across Asia. Check out some of the coolest street art we’ve ever seen after the jump.

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Airport art! Local airports in Japan having fun with baggage carousels

Airport art! Local airports in Japan having fun with baggage carousels

Is that a giant eyeball in your luggage or are you just happy to see me?

Actually, it’s neither! What you’re looking at up there–and what’s staring back at you–is an art piece that rides the baggage carousel at a local Tottori Prefecture Airport. Realizing how boring it can be to wait for your luggage to come, the airport lets Medama no Oyaji ride around to his tiny heart’s content to cheer up impatient passengers.

But Tottori’s airport isn’t the only one getting in on the rotating art displays. Check out some of the country’s best below!

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Bow-shooting Chinese cutie gets suspicious reaction from world Netizens

Bow-shooting Chinese cutie gets suspicious reaction from world Netizens

China – and to a large extent, Japan – seems to have an unhealthy obsession with any woman of above-average attractiveness performing some action that attractive women aren’t typically known for.

The Chinese media has serialized this concept to the point that we’ve seen them make a fuss over “hot girl cops,” “hot girl soldiers,” heck, even “hot girl bus drivers.” It seems like any time a cute girl does anything other than breath, Asia goes completely crazy.

And now, just when you thought the concept couldn’t jump the shark more spectacularly, we now have “hot girl archer.”

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New Pokemon anime taking it back to ’96, Coming this October!

New Pokemon anime taking it back to ’96, Coming this October!

Were you one of the millions playing the battery life out of Pokémon Red, Green, or Blue back in the late ’90s? If so, your days fishing for magicarp have probably taken a backseat to a 9-5 job and changing diapers. Perhaps you feel a little disconnected after the several iterations that followed the original games over nearly two decades and feel that the poké balls have been passed to younger generations?

If any of this applies to you, the people behind Pokémon want to say they understand and have prepared a special treat in store. Coming 2 October to TV Tokyo a new anime series will begin titled Pokémon the Origin and follows the storyline of the original set of games.

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Did someone in Japan find a magic lamp?

Did someone in Japan find a magic lamp?

Mother Nature can do some amazing things. Sometimes, she’s a real terror, but she can also be a fan of all things cute. This next creation is just plain cool. Spotted in Japan, this cloud reminds us of a familiar sidekick to a street rat from Agrabah.

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Enjoy Kyoto (Part 3) — The ultimate breakfast? Try $45 rice porridge at a 400-year-old restaurant

Enjoy Kyoto (Part 3) — The ultimate breakfast? Try $45 rice porridge at a 400-year-old restaurant

In the first two articles of our three-part series on interesting ways to enjoy Kyoto based on my recent visit to the popular tourist city, I have already written about an attractive place to stay and a fascinating historic site to visit. In the third and final article of the series, I thought I would introduce a restaurant where you can have a truly unique dining experience, because of course, no trip to Kyoto would be complete without tasting the numerous culinary delights the city has to offer. The restaurant I visited was Hyotei, a famous establishment with a long history that specializes in Japanese kaiseki cuisine.  And what is so unique about dining there? Well, for starters, you can have a breakfast rice porridge dish (asagayu) that costs 4,500 yen (US$45)!

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24 Japanese names with strange meanings in other languages

24 Japanese names with strange meanings in other languages

In Japan, the meaning of names can often be easily understood since they are typically made up of two or three Chinese characters. But what does that same name mean in other languages? Often, nothing. But sometimes a Japanese name can be translated as something as mundane as “bear cub” or as embarrassing as “pubic hair.” Take a look at 24 Japanese names that mean something entirely different when said in another language.

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The curious case of the “pink bra” purse snatcher in Osaka

The curious case of the “pink bra” purse snatcher in Osaka

When flashers go from bad to feral and branch out into bag snatching, what’s the world coming to?

At about 3am JST on 16 August 2013 in Osaka’s Hirano Ward, a 26-year-old woman called the police to report that she’d had her handbag stolen, which contained 9,000 yen (about US$90) in cash. As she cycled the short journey home from work, the bag was rudely snatched from the basket on the front of her bicycle by a man who pursued and overtook her on a black scooter. She described how to identify the alleged perp—as he was “totally naked except for a pink brassiere”, he should definitely stand out in a crowd. Police commented that this style of bag snatching was a first.

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We checked out tourou nagashi in Asakusa and loved the beautiful floating lanterns!

We checked out tourou nagashi in Asakusa and loved the beautiful floating lanterns!

In case no one told you, it’s obon this week in Japan! For many people this means a well-deserved long vacation and a trip home. It also means lots of fun cultural events. As you may know, obon is a Buddhist holiday all about the spirits of deceased ancestors coming back for a short visit. Tourou nagashi, literally “lanterns flowing,” is a special ceremony where, as the name implies, lanterns are set afloat, usually down a river. It’s a fun way to spend your evening and an incredible sight as well! This week, we headed to Azuma Bridge in Asakusa, Tokyo to check out the ceremony!

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New online game has players fulfilling the needs of endless waves of schoolgirls, it’s freaking hard and could you help you study Japanese

New online game has players fulfilling the needs of endless waves of schoolgirls, it’s freaking hard and could you help you study Japanese

Growing up as a young girl isn’t easy, the problems both big and small, mental and physical seem endless. This coming-of-age dilemma is the basis of a new online game put out by girls’ manga magazine, Ribbon. Although, instead of a schoolgirl you take the role of a school nurse’s assistant charged with helping an onslaught of children unhappy with their smells and suffering nosebleeds in School Nurse’s Office.

Don’t let the cutesy artwork of the game fool you, this is deceptively challenging! At least zombies only want one thing.

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Explosion-proof membranes won’t keep your phone from blowing, but it might save you from the shrapnel

Explosion-proof membranes won’t keep your phone from blowing, but it might save you from the shrapnel

It looks like the world is facing a new pandemic, but we’re not talking about any viruses or diseases here. No, we’re talking about exploding smartphones. From Europe to the United States to China, more and more cases of phone batteries blowing themselves apart are surfacing, stirring up concern for many. No longer can we fling perturbed birds at their giggling pork nemeses without worrying that our phones will blow our faces off. While the safest option would probably be to simply avoid having one, what would we do without our smartphones on the train, at work when our boss isn’t looking, or in bed at 3 am? This deep, possibly unhealthy attachment to the devices has led to an interesting new product in China: explosion-proof membranes.

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