Five of Japan’s best locations to ski and snowboard

Five of Japan’s best locations to ski and snowboard

For those of us up in the northern hemisphere, winter is already in full swing. And for skiers and snowboarders, that can mean only one thing: the snow-covered mountains are calling and it’s a race against the clock to get the most out of them.

Treated to generous snow dumps each winter and coupled with the fact that so much of the country is mountainous, Japan is one of the best locations in the world for ski and snowboarding fun, not to mention some of the best powder snow in the world. But which resorts should you be sure to visit before the powder turns to slush? Check out this list of five of Japan’s greatest, and our favourite, places to ski and snowboard!

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Hypnobirthing: A way to give birth without fear or pain that is gaining popularity in Japan

Hypnobirthing: A way to give birth without fear or pain that is gaining popularity in Japan

Have you ever heard of the term “hypnobirthing“? And no, it doesn’t involve hypnosis in the traditional use of the word. It’s a trend that has recently been catching on with mothers-to-be in Japan. Read on to learn more about this technique which aids women in having a more comfortable childbirth, as well as some comments from Japanese women who have tried hypnobirthing for themselves.

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Love hotels offer free post-coital kimono dressing service for guests on Coming of Age Day

Love hotels offer free post-coital kimono dressing service for guests on Coming of Age Day

As we saw earlier today, some girls in Japan celebrate turning the big two-oh with some rather elaborate outfits. However, most young women on Coming-of-Age Day in Japan opt for a more traditional-looking kimono.

Another aspect of Coming-of-Age Day is the ceremony held in each region of the land. In each of them, large numbers of young men and women gather to celebrate, during which time it’s only natural for at least some of them to hook up, which is perhaps why the love hotel industry sees an annual spike on this particular holiday.

If you put these two things together, though, you have a big problem.

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One Piece’s Nami has silicone breast implants, and we have pics to prove it

One Piece’s Nami has silicone breast implants, and we have pics to prove it

How many of you have ever seriously wondered if One Piece’s heroine, Nami, has fake boobs? Well, not just Nami, we can easily name a long list of manga or anime characters with overwhelming assets. These characters can get away with heavy bosoms larger than their heads because they’re fictional after all, but if they existed in real life like famous celebrities, there is bound to be speculation over whether they’ve gotten implants.

Sorry to dash your dreams, guys, but it seems that Nami has silicone implants! We’ve got the photos to prove it!

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Applications for Japan Self Defense Force increase by 20% thanks to moe

Applications for Japan Self Defense Force increase by 20% thanks to moe

Cuteness sells, even if what you’re selling is recruitment for the Japan Self-Defense Force (JSDF) and the National Defense Academy (NDA). Since last July, the JSDF’s Okayama Provincial Cooperation Office has been using three adorable mascot girls to raise awareness for the JSDF. The girls represent each military branch of the forces, sporting the uniforms for each. Momoe Kibi represents the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (Army), Mizuho Seto represents the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (Navy), while Airi Bizen represents the Japan Air Self Defense Force (Air Force). If the design aesthetic looks familiar, it’s because the girls were created by Humikane Shimada, the original character designer behind such military-inspired moe series like Strike Witches and Girls und Panzer.

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Sporty nerds gather in Nagano to show off their anime and manga-inspired snowboards

Sporty nerds gather in Nagano to show off their anime and manga-inspired snowboards

Snowboarding is fairly popular in Japan and there’s no doubt that anime and manga are deeply ingrained in the psyche of many people across the nation. So we suppose this ita-board, or “painfully nerdy snowboard” event isn’t too much of a surprise considering the constant appearance of ita-sha (painful cars), ita-suit (painful suit), and even ita-heli (painful helicopters). What did surprise us is the national association dedicated to nerdy snowboards and the annual event that hosts them.

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Rumour: Sony and major Chinese investor in talks re: bringing PlayStation 4 to China

Rumour: Sony and major Chinese investor in talks re: bringing PlayStation 4 to China

It was perhaps inevitable that games industry giants should start taking an interest in China the moment the country’s laws changed, permitting the production and sale of video games consoles for the first time in almost a decade and a half, but tech sites and analysts in China are now suggesting that talks held late last year between the Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group and Japan’s Sony Corporation very likely herald the official arrival of PlayStation 4 in China.

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Bendy beauty looks cute, sexy and totally awesome in her new calendar!【Photos】

Bendy beauty looks cute, sexy and totally awesome in her new calendar!【Photos】

Time flies by so quickly! In a blink of an eye, about half of January has already gone by. This post might have come slightly late, but if you have yet to get yourself a calendar for the year, here’s an extraordinary one for your consideration!

Known as the world’s most flexible woman, Russian-born contortionist Zlata struts her incredible skills in this 2014 calendar!

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New 20-year-olds in Japan celebrate Coming of Age Day with extreme fashion

New 20-year-olds in Japan celebrate Coming of Age Day with extreme fashion

Earlier today we showed you an image of the craziest finger-length nails covered in pink charms. We just recently discovered that this was merely the tip of the iceberg…a terrifying pink wig-wearing, bug-eyed iceberg. If you thought these completely impractical nails were bad, we’re sorry to report that it gets worse…much worse. Read on, if you dare, to find out more about this young woman’s outfit and take a look at some of her just-as-terrifying friends.

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Learning Edo-era blade polishing techniques from a Japanese master

Learning Edo-era blade polishing techniques from a Japanese master

Have you taken a close look lately at the knives you use every day when preparing food? If you’ve been using them for many years, they are no doubt dull and in need of a sharper replacement, especially if you want to do any fancy knife work. While it may seem easier to just go out and buy a new set, you might be inspired to learn how to sharpen and polish them yourselves when you hear about the ancient Japanese art of blade sharpening and the few remaining craftsmen practicing it. Click below to read about our visit to one such sharpening master in Tokyo!

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My Melody lucky bag turns out to be slightly unlucky

My Melody lucky bag turns out to be slightly unlucky

Buying a fukubukuro (lucky bag) is one of the most anticipated thrills during New Year’s in Japan. Although what’s in the bag is a mystery until you’ve paid for it, the goods in the bag are usually worth more than the price you pay for the fukubukuro, so most of the time it is indeed a “lucky” buy.

Depending on your luck, you might not get something you desperately want or need in the bag, but even that wouldn’t dampen your day as much as what this Japanese Twitter user found in her slightly “unlucky” My Melody fukubukuro.

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Surprising foreign words Japanese people are likely to know

Surprising foreign words Japanese people are likely to know

As mentioned many times before on this site, the modern Japanese language uses a set of characters to represent foreign words called katakana. Such characters are used for foreign place names such a Beverly Hills (ビバリーヒルズ) or people like Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (マフムード・アフマディーネジャード).

However, this feature of Japanese has been criticized by some for allowing the purity of the language to be polluted by foreign influences. It can also cause confusion by creating English words that have different meanings than the original.

That being said, for foreigners visiting Japan with a limited knowledge of the language this list may prove invaluable. Excluding the obvious classics like “OK” (オケ) and “McDonald’s” (マクドナルド) here are some relatively newer loan words ranked by understandability in Japanese.

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Young woman celebrates adulthood with dizzying Hello Kitty/My Melody nails

Young woman celebrates adulthood with dizzying Hello Kitty/My Melody nails

This 13 January marked yet another Coming-of-Age Day in Japan. Every year on the second Monday of January, young adults who have turned 20 in the previous year congregate in city halls and community centers across the land.

These ceremonies honor the passage into adulthood and for such a once in a lifetime event, it’s not uncommon to see young women dress to the nines with an elegant kimono and elaborate hairstyle. Nails are an important feature too, but one young woman decided to accompany the event with some once-in-a-lifetime nails. In fact the image above is only about 45% of them.

Get ready to see the full picture, but beware! It’s kind of like staring into an Escher painting.

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See a Tokyo from the past as you’ve never seen before — in vivid colors and brushstrokes!

See a Tokyo from the past as you’ve never seen before — in vivid colors and brushstrokes!

Before the capital city of Tokyo was given its current name in the late 1800s, it was known as Edo and served as the seat of power for the Tokugawa shogunate. The era now referred to as the Edo Period effectively ended with the last Tokugawa shogun Yoshinobu Tokugawa relinquishing power to Emperor Meiji in 1867, thus drawing the age of the shoguns to a close. However, we were pleasantly surprised to find a collection of vivid paintings depicting Tokyo sometime after the end of the Edo Period but still strongly reminiscent of a past era when the city was called by its former name. Quite interestingly, these paintings happen to be the work of an American artist who travelled to Japan near the end of the 19th century. So, come join us and take a look at Tokyo through the eyes of a foreign visitor to Japan over 120 years ago. It’s certainly nothing like the Tokyo we know today!

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The vocaloid classroom: Where music class meets the 21st century

The vocaloid classroom: Where music class meets the 21st century

Music class can be pretty hit or miss. Some people really enjoy it and find a life-long passion–other fumble hopelessly with the drumsticks and just wish it were time to start math class. Either way, we all had to sit through it, right?

But as important as learning an instrument may be, it kind of seems like music class is still stuck in the 20th century–or even the 19th century. After all, the music industry today relies as much on Pro Tools as it does on an expert bass player. So while we’ll always need skilled musicians, it does seem prudent to introduce the more technologically advanced aspects of music to the classroom, doesn’t it?

Well, one Japanese school did just that by offering a vocaloid composition trial lesson to their curriculum!

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No wrong answer: Given the choice, what kind of panties would you have your girlfriend wear?

No wrong answer: Given the choice, what kind of panties would you have your girlfriend wear?

Pop quiz, guys: Your girlfriend approaches you and says she’ll wear whatever panties you tell her to, and she won’t even get mad if you choose the ones that reveal too much or make her look fat. What do you do? Go for the safe, hip-level sailor stripes? How about the slightly creepy but non-offensive teddy bear print? Go for broke and tell her to go commando?

This is the kind of question men of the Internet apparently pore over, because this image with the above question popped up on a Japanese Internet forum recently.

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【Monday Kickstart】The duckling herder

【Monday Kickstart】The duckling herder

It’s Monday again and you know what that means! Your Monday Kickstart video is here to get you going through another week. 

Think going back to your job on Monday morning is hard? At least you’re not a duck herder…what are we talking about? This is the best job ever!

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Super limber Chinese lady shows world insane stretching routine【video】

Super limber Chinese lady shows world insane stretching routine【video】

Have you made that New Year’s resolution to be healthier but just can’t seem to make the commitment to work out? Is the only flexible thing in your life the elastic band around your sweatpants after you gorge yourself on cake? We think we can motivate you into a more active lifestyle by seeing a Chinese lady in her 50s doing her morning stretching routine that will be sure to shame you into eating healthier and exercising more!

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The adorably worst hide-and-seek players ever, a photo journey

The adorably worst hide-and-seek players ever, a photo journey

All over the world, Hide and Seek is a staple of childhood play teaching kids the valuable skills needed for a job in either the bounty hunting or escaped convict fields. Also, being one of the earliest games children can play, it begins to show them that not everyone possess the same inherent skill-set. Knowing this, it’s not so bad to say that some kids just plain suck at hiding.

The following twenty images show such concealmentally-challenged children in action. Don’t worry about feeling bad laughing at these kids either, as it’s possible to lead a rich life without the ability to hide in a house. In fact, we can statistically assume that at least 20 percent of world leaders were hopelessly stuck being “it” as children.

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The best of Japan’s “top 3” tourist hotspots【poll】

The best of Japan’s “top 3” tourist hotspots【poll】

Japan really loves to put its tourist spots into a top three list, such as the top three gardens or the top three hot springs. And a lot of tourists like to visit all three of the places to be able to say they’ve completed the set. But which of these famous trios do Japanese tourists want to visit the most? The website Web R25 recently surveyed 664 of their readers to ask them which of the top three lists they most want to visit. Click below to find out which trio of tourist hotspots topped the list and be sure to let us know which one you prefer in our RocketNews24 poll at the bottom!

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