Japan, China, Thailand and Korea summed up in one phrase each – but are they accurate?

A thought-provoking post recently appeared on Chinese micro-blogging site Weibo purporting to sum up the national characteristic of Japan, China, Thailand and Korea in one simple phrase each. The post gained a huge amount of attention online for its controversial nature, with many people criticising the reducing of entire countries down to a single limiting phrase. Others, however, thought that the phrases chosen were pretty spot on

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Is this the world’s most spoiled cat?【Video】

It’s already Tuesday here in the Big J, but even though we’ve survived the day whose name shall not be spoken and which many of you are still enduring, the weekend still seems awfully far away. So for all you hardworking salarymen (and women!), here’s a super cute kitty cat to help you ease into the week. Watch him enjoy his prime heater-front real estate and dream of your own warm happy place.

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Tantalizing Osaka advertisement lures in certain unsuspecting, unsober passersby

A rather risqué advertisement somewhere in Osaka has been drawing quite the attention from passersby. It exploded in popularity when one Japanese Twitter user uploaded a picture of the poster online for the world to see. But just what about it, besides some woman’s attractively long legs, makes it such a brilliant advertising scheme? Wait till you read what said Twitter user said he saw one person doing beneath the picture. 

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Resort in Philippines has literally giant Gundam rip-off, plus Disney and Marvel knockoffs galore

Although the Philippines have plenty of seaside travel destinations, Jed’s Island Resort isn’t one of them. Being located in the landlocked municipality of Calumpit means that while Jed’s isn’t far from Manila Bay, it doesn’t have any coastline to call its own.

That’s OK, though, because you can still relax in one of the resort’s nine advertised swimming pools. And while you may not be able to enjoy listening to the sound of the waves, you will be able to look up at Jed’s gigantic Gundam statue that’s as tall as the one in Tokyo yet far, far skinnier. Not into anime? Not a problem! Jed’s is also home to beloved characters from Disney, Marvel, and DC…or at least their disturbingly off-model, knockoff doppelgangers.

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Little Witch Academia sequel’s title, 2015 theatrical release unveiled

Anime Studio Trigger opened the official website for Little Witch Academia: Mahō Shikake no Parade (Little Witch Academia: The Enchanted Parade), the sequel to its 2013 Little Witch Academia movie, on Monday. The site unveiled a visual, and confirms that the movie will have a theatrical release via TOHO Visual in Japan in 2015.

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Reverse Valentine’s Day comes to Japanese high schools as girls finally get presents from guys

Japan likes to celebrate Valentine’s Day by women taking the first step and giving a gift of chocolate to the men in their life (whether they see them in a romantic or platonic light), and for the guys to reciprocate a month later on March 14, or White Day, as it’s known here. Over the last couple of years, though, some florists have been putting up signs dropping hints that in the west, it’s customary for men to take the initiative in giving presents on Valentine’s Day.

The idea still doesn’t seem to have really caught on, though, and when I stopped by the flower shop to pick up some roses for my wife this year, I didn’t see a crowd of other men doing the same. But it looks like guys may be slowly warming up to the idea of doing something sweet in February, as this year a number of high school girls got a pleasant, and present, surprise by receiving chocolate from their male classmates in something they’re calling “Reverse Valentine’s Day.”

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7 surprising images of Tokyo without its billboards and neon signs 【GIFs】

If you’ve ever walked the streets of Tokyo, you’ll know how the buzz of people, street signs and giant screens can heighten all your senses and fill you with a rush of excitement that stays with you well after you’ve returned back home. While travel brochure photos can never truly prepare you for the dense onslaught of visual and aural stimuli that envelop you when you visit the megalopolis, one creative photographer has come up with a clever way of highlighting the main features of the city by showing us just how bare the city landscape looks without them there.

Come with us as we take a walk through day and night in Tokyo and see just how different the place looks when the neon signs and billboards are taken away. You’ll never see Tokyo in quite the same way again.

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Idol group’s collaboration with blackfaced performers sparks controversy in America

J-pop-cum-doo-wop group Rats & Star have been active for decades in Japan singing soul tunes and doing the occasional electric slide. It’s a style of music that they have embraced whole-heartedly. In fact they are so into the sound that they paint themselves black during shows to look the part.

Their act had continued without major incident for quite some time until one of their singers Yoshio Sato posted a promotional image of them with idol unit Momoiro Clover Z on Twitter for an upcoming TV appearance, nearly all with faces painted black.

As you might expect, many Americans are up in arms over the image, but what do Japanese people have to say about this?

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A manly affair: celebrating Valentine’s Day at a Japanese all-boys school

In a country where girls traditionally give chocolate to boys on Valentine’s Day and the boys returning the favor exactly one month later on White Day, February 14 in Japan has got to be a pretty lonely day for the young men who attend all-boys schools.

But it turns out that those boys may not suffer through such a bleak holiday after all. Take a look at these pictures and see how some students at Japanese boys’ schools celebrated Valentine’s Day this year, minus the girls!

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Check out these doodles by legendary Japanese author Osamu Dazai!

From the Heian period to today, Japan has had more than its fair share of great writers. While Ki no Tsurayuki and Murasaki Shikibu are this humble writer’s favorite members of the Japanese literati, today we’re talking about someone a bit more modern: Osamu Dazai. Famous for his first-person and often morose stories, such as the world-famous novel No Longer Human, Dazai was one of the more troubled figures of Japanese literature–and he eventually died in a double suicide when only 38 years old.

Considering his turbulent life, it’s probably no surprise that his classroom doodles, drawn in his English and Ethics notebooks, are so fascinating! Even if you’ve never read a single word by the author, you still won’t want to miss these drawings.

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Curiosity doesn’t kill, but certainly surprises, the cat in this adorable video

Cats are dumb. They don’t even know how to interact with basic devices such as televisions, cooking ranges, mirrors, computers, or doors (well, sometimes they figure the last one out).

But not knowing what to do with these everyday items doesn’t stop felines from hopelessly pawing at them and hoping for something to happen, displaying that telltale curiosity cats are well-known for exhibiting… and occasionally dying from.

Take this adorable kitty that gets the surprise of its life after it stupidly paws at an iMac for a few seconds.

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Dual-wielding free thrower masters the game of arcade basketball 【Video】

There are all sorts of masters lurking in arcades around the world. We’ve seen quite a few in Japan, where taiko drum experts and claw game champions reign supreme. But if this video of a basketball free-thrower is anything to go by, Chinese game centers seem to have their own breed of skilled gamers. However, what makes the skills of the guy on the left, we’ll call him “Khaki Shorts,” all the more amazing is the fact that he’s making one-handed free throws with both his left and right hand four times faster than the other players.

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Channel your inner rock god while smoothing your skin with the official KISS face pack

KISS, the never-ending merchandising machine, is still relatively popular in Japan and periodically releases Japan-exclusive products. In the past we’ve seen black KISS spicy steamed buns and just recently we were treated to a KISS collaboration music video with popular Japanese idol group Momoiro Clover Z. But if you aren’t satisfied merely eating or watching the band, you now have a chance to transform into one of its members in mere seconds using the newly released KISS Face Pack.

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Escaped hamster went on overeating rampage, may have eating issues 【Photos】

We’re pretty keen followers of the Japanese site Hamster Sokuhou (“hamster newsflash”). But if there’s one thing that site has long been missing, it’s hamster-themed news…until now!

Because entertainment news site Hamster Sokuhou, which actually has nothing to do with rodents at all, has finally done what it says on the tin and brought us something hamster-related to write home about, with this Japanese Twitter user’s tale of one greedy little pet who escaped in the night.

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Skilled Japanese artist creates intricate cut-paper origami cranes

Kiri-e (切り絵) is the Japanese art of hand-cutting paper into intricate designs. Kirigami (切り紙), on the other hand, involves cutting and folding paper to create a 3-D image that pops right off the page. But one talented Japanese artist has combined these two traditional art forms, creating folded paper cranes that contain a seemingly impossible-to-achieve cut-out design. Let’s take a closer look at her stunning artwork!

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China’s Valentine’s Day sabotage may be the best thing to happen to the holiday

Recently in parts of China a movement has been growing online where groups have been pooling funds to buy up all of the odd-numbered seats in movie theaters to prevent couples from going during peak hours of Valentine’s Day.

While this might seem like simply a spiteful act by single people during a day devoted to couples, the Chinese media and others are beginning to see it as much more. These motivated individuals may be tearing down preconceptions of the holiday and creating something more even love-inspiring than it ever had been.

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Cute animals in powered exoskeletons: 6 wondrous items from the 2015 Wonder Festival

The latest edition of Japan’s bi-annual Wonder Festival brought out both male and female cosplayers, plus Sailor Moon figurines, which are well-known stalwarts of any good event celebrating anime and the creative arts. But what about the actual handmade models that put the wonder into the festival?

Amateur hobbyists converge at the event to display and sell unique goods, resulting in an array of never-before-seen models and items that can’t be found anywhere else. From ramen kewpie dolls to seductive vegetables, we’ve got photos of the most imaginative and eye-popping goods you’ll see this season.

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We made world-famous French toast in our office, and so can you! 【RocketKitchen】

Have you heard of the Hotel Okura in Tokyo? It’s recognized as one of the top hotels in the world, often housing rich business travelers and foreign heads of state visiting Japan. Every U.S. president since Richard Nixon has stayed there, and even James Bond has been a guest!

But despite all that, the Hotel Okura is best known among us mortals as “the home of the most delicious French toast in the world.” It’s been praised by innumerable websites and reviews, turning the small, simple breakfast dish into a 1,840-yen (US$15.50) delicacy. With a price and reputation like that, you wouldn’t expect us to be able to make the exact same thing in our office kitchen. Right?

Well, we did. And so can you!

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Tokyo Disneyland Hotel set to enchant guests with new character themed rooms!

We all know that the people at Disney are masters of enchantment and magic. Well, it seems they’ve done it again, this time putting their formidable powers of imagination to full use to renovate part of their rooms at the Tokyo Disneyland Hotel. For the first time since its opening in 2008, rooms at the iconic hotel have been redone and were opened to the public this week. As you might expect, the new rooms indeed look magical, worthy of the Disney reputation for turning fantasy into reality. So, let’s take a look at the lovely rooms designed to make guests feel like they’ve stepped into a Disney story!

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Adorable cat strikes mind-boggling pose – Can you decipher what he’s trying to communicate?

Sometimes our pets do crazy things to get our attention, whether it be for food, to play or just for some good ol’ loving. This adorable green-eyed feline seems to have tried everything to get his owner’s attention, but with little success, so he had to resort to some sort of strange yoga move. This pose did the trick, because he not only got the attention he craved, but that of the internet community too!

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