April is upon us again, which means the start of a new school and work year in Japan. So perhaps it’s fitting that Fuji TV’s morning informational show Nonstop! recently aired a segment about new company employees. But its focus wasn’t on just any new recruits to the workplace…it was about monster recruits! Read on to find out what kinds of unthinkable behavior shocked netizens and made them lament the rude ways of the younger generation.
Well, good afternoon/evening/morning/day everyone! Today we’re going to talk about Japanese greetings and what they really mean.
Just as in English, “Konnichiwa” or “Good day” is a greeting that is technically an idiom with a complex and near-forgotten past. Just as English language greetings tend to stem from bastardizations of foreign loan words and/or full sentences that have been gradually shortened over the years, “konnichiwa” is actually a shortened version of a full and meaningful greeting, because, if anything, human beings are a lazy sort with a bad habit of cutting corners whenever possible.
How do you take the best selfies on your phone? In Japan, for girls especially, pulling down your chin, turning up your eyes and giving your best duck lips is said to be the standard technique for photographing the most beautiful you.
BUT! This time we want to overthrow the established theory and introduce the ULTIMATE selfie technique. The person providing these tips today is a Japanese TV and movie star who’s a pro at taking flattering pictures of herself. So, directly from the star herself, the way to take the ultimate selfie is…?!?!?!
- Joan Coello
Apr 8, 2014
Let’s be honest, if selfies (self-portrait photographs) were a crime, most, if not all of us would be found guilty. With a million and one smart phone applications created to satisfy our narcissistic photography habits, catering to the needs of every possible user group; from hardcore selfie maniacs to tech-newbies, even preschool kids are selfie experts these days.
If you are one of the rare few who have yet to jump on to the selfie bandwagon, get this. Even cats are taking selfies, and they’re surprisingly good at it! Not only do they look cute and fuzzy as always, they make some of the most hilarious expressions too!
Gundam fans worldwide, including those in the industry, are taking to Twitter, Pixiv, and other social media to celebrate the 35th anniversary of Mobile Suit Gundam, which began airing on April 7, 1979. The messages have been including artwork, photos of gunpla, and more.
Here are some of our favorites:
Meet Marutaro, a pigmy hedgehog who lives in Japan with his hedgehog wife, Okomesan, and daughter, Kinoko. As you might be able to tell already, he isn’t any ordinary hedgehog. With 41,800 followers on Twitter and plenty more admirers around the web, Marutaro is the most famous hedgehog in the world.
- Fran Wrigley
Apr 8, 2014
We’ve seen what some lucky Japanese students get up to at their crazy cosplay graduation ceremonies, and now we bring you an entrance ceremony extravaganza! New students enrolling at Kinki University in Osaka on April 5th were treated to a stadium-style light show and idol dance performance conceived by Tsunku, the producer behind idol supergroup Morning Musume.
While some Japanese netizens took to social media to question the organisers’ use of funds in throwing such an extravagant party for students who are, after all, only just entering the school, the university offered up an original reason for putting on the spectacular show: to encourage the one-third of incoming students who hadn’t picked Kinki University as their first choice.
- KK Miller
Apr 8, 2014
We all know Maru. We love him, watch his videos on YouTube and then wonder how we can make our own animals as amazing as he is. This time around, Maru and his companion Hana find themselves with a new box. The newest challenger is long and rectangular with a perfect circle cut out of one end. What will happen next?!?!?! Drum roll please!!!!
Recently, we talked about how Japanese, while a tough language to learn, isn’t quite as difficult as some horror stories make it out to be. Still, if English is your native language, certain Japanese grammar rules, like saying “wa” and “o” to mark the subject and object of your sentences, can seem like a major hassle.
With practice, though, these things start to become automatic. Even better, the Japanese language is filled with incredibly handy phrases that we’d love to import into English.
In the age of affordable digital cameras and programs that can make even photos and footage taken by a team of cavorting chimps look artistic and cool, footage of popular destinations like Tokyo are ten-a-penny online. But this video from Simon Boulsson is not just noteworthy by stop-and-gawp-worthy.
Titled “TOKYO REVERSE”, the video is set to a pumping soundtrack and takes us on a brief tour of some of the capital city’s most famous spots. The views are of course stunning, but as its title suggests there’s even more to the video than that.
- Cara Clegg
Apr 7, 2014
Which prefectures produce the best kids?
On April 2 the Kyoritsu Research Institute announced their findings of where the ‘best’ kids in the country are brought up, based on an analysis of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT)’s 2013 ‘National Aptitude Test and Education Survey’.
- Master Blaster
Apr 7, 2014
Although apparently so famously gross it earned its own idiom in English, there are some communities around Japan that have long felt when it comes to fowl, crow is the way to go. For example the crow dish above can be found at Espoir De Maison, a French restaurant in Chino City, Nagano.
Ibaraki residents such as hunter Shinya Senmatsu say that such wild animals which feed on natural vegetation have more pleasant and less smelly meat. It’s uncertain if that really applies to crows who are omnivorous scavengers, but the locals swear by its surprisingly “soft and sweet” taste, to quote a local veterinarian.
- Casey Baseel
Apr 7, 2014
As cultural attitudes continue to evolve in Japan, some groups that have spent decades being socially ostracized are finally seeing the tides turn in their favor. For example, while the covers of most men’s fashion magazines are still plastered with photos of incredibly slender guys, the country has recently been showing some love for heavyset males as well.
One demographic that still tends to have a hard time landing a date, though, are the otaku, Japan’s catch-all term for obsessive fans of anime, video games, computers, and anything traditionally geeky. But could the popular image of otaku as the bottom feeders of the dating pool be a case of women overlooking their hidden merits as boyfriend material?
In honor of the Denny’s restaurant chain opening its first Japanese location 40 years ago, Denny’s Japan will be offering a special “American Fair” menu starting on April 15. Of course, such an announcement raises questions about just what exactly this American Fair involves and whether it’s authentic or not.
Fortunately, we here at RocketNews24 were able to enlist the services of a real, live American to specially sample the menu for us to tell us whether Denny’s offerings were anything like the real deal! This young man is none other than IKE, a member of the six-man Japanese comedy group/band Choshinjuku who was born in New York and raised in Seattle. Ike vowed that if the menu didn’t live up to his expectations, he would send a message to the restaurant manager and shut down the whole campaign.
Do you think that Denny’s American Fair menu passed his test?
- Casey Baseel
Apr 7, 2014
In plenty of situations, Japan’s reliance on public transportation is a life-saver. Need some extra time to study for that test in first period? Pull out your notebook and review on the train to school. Had a few drinks too many? Park yourself in a seat on the subway, take a 30-minute nap, and arrive at the station with just enough power to walk home and get your key in the door.
Now, a railway in Chiba Prefecture is looking to give a hand not just to procrastinating students and heavy drinkers (who are, of course, often one and the same), but to young lovers, too, with its special priority seats for couples. That’s right, singletons, you just got one more reason to hate clingy couples.
- Philip Kendall
Apr 7, 2014
Barely a week after branding her a “blabbering peasant woman,” North Korea has labelled South Korean leader Park Geun-hye a “repulsive wench” via its state-run media. Not only that, but the same quoted source also alluded to the fact that the president has no children of her own, and said that she “makes a mockery of sacred motherhood.”
- Joan Coello
Apr 7, 2014
An uninhabited island, Big Major Cay, located in Exuma of the Bahamas, is home to what are arguably the world’s happiest pigs! More commonly known as Pig Island or Pig Beach by the locals, this tropical getaway is famous for none other than its adorable swimming pigs!
- Philip Kendall
Apr 7, 2014
As we’ve seen before, Hollywood stars who ordinarily wouldn’t be seen dead in a commercial in their homeland for fear of damaging their reputation as a serious actor aren’t quite so shy when it comes to commercials in Japan. With Japanese companies eager to push stacks of cash stars’ way in exchange for endorsing their products, occasionally a big-name actor will pop up on billboards over the famous Shibuya scramble intersection and on primetime TV.
This week, smirking silver fox George Clooney follows in Leonardo DiCaprio‘s footsteps by lending his face to a Japanese commercial, in this case one for Kirin Brewery Company’s Green Label brand of beer. Clooney is no stranger to ads even at home, but Kirin’s commercial – which sees the actor painting a house and communicating with a small bird – is kind of an odd one, partly because it doesn’t have an awful lot to do with beer, and partly because, to our ears at least, Clooney appears to be channeling Christian Bale’s Batman for his single word of Japanese dialogue.
Apr 7, 2014
One of the worst things about being an adult is not getting to play pretend anymore–or, at the very least, getting angry looks from grumpy old neighbors when you do. Your boss is almost guaranteed not to be amused by you shouting, “The floor is lava!” and then leaping onto your desk. We suppose that’s the best reason to have a kid–no one will complain about you playing pretend with your son or daughter!
Well, one parent has taken their pretend playing with their kid to an entirely different dimension. Thanks to computer graphics skills honed through working at freaking DreamWorks, this guy has made his son’s pretend play into reality and wowed netizens across Japan while doing so.
- 10 things Japan gets horribly wrong1
- Real-life barbie bares real-life face in minimal makeup selfies【Photos】2
- Brutal four-panel comic explains why Japanese salaryman are trapped in their jobs3
- Touching commercial pulls off a hat-trick to hit us right in the feels once again4
- Cute girls are universal! Japanese netizens rave over a Chinese girl who is “too cute”【Photos】5
- So, the Dalai Lama walks into a convenience store in rural Japan… 【Photos】6
- 20 crazy facts about North Korea7
- Taiwanese student creates incredible art with materials others would throw away【Photos】8
- The extreme lengths Samsung must go to make sure your Galaxy phone works perfectly9
- Amazing Lego artist spends six months bringing Hatsune Miku into the physical world10
- Chinese Photoshop Trolls and the Half-Blood Prisoner of the Deathly Phoenix Goblet (Part 6)1
- 10 incredible tiny houses in Japan: a photo tour2
- Unfortunate Google employee forced to wander alone on eerie abandoned island for Street View photos3
- The extreme lengths Samsung must go to make sure your Galaxy phone works perfectly4
- 10 things Japan gets horribly wrong5
- Ten-year-old illustrator getting national attention for his unique style of portraits6
- See what 13 stuffed toys look like after a wash at the home spa7
- We finally get to meet Goku’s mother — and we think she’s a real cutie!8
- So, the Dalai Lama walks into a convenience store in rural Japan… 【Photos】9
- Sad breakfasts the morning after a fight【Photos】10
- Japanese netizens put reality on hold for a moment, fall in love with new attorney general of Crimea1
- Chinese Photoshop Trolls and the Half-Blood Prisoner of the Deathly Phoenix Goblet (Part 6)2
- Little store managers take over FamilyMart in Taiwan, hilarity and tons of cute in store【Video】3
- Unfortunate Google employee forced to wander alone on eerie abandoned island for Street View photos4
- Daughter of Osamu Tezuka, God of Manga, discovers his stash of hand-drawn sexy mouse artwork5
- Attack on Titan’s studio head talks sequels, keys to the hit anime’s success6
- 【TBT】China’s Photoshop experts will fix your bad photos, but be careful what you wish for7
- 10 incredible tiny houses in Japan: a photo tour8
- Admirers express their love for Crimean attorney general in the purest way they can: cute fan art9
- Who’s inside those theme park costumes? In China, it could be this 75-year-old woman10
- Korean high schools allow “anything goes” yearbook photos, with hilarious results1
- Taiwan’s Gravity Max – Quite possibly the scariest roller coaster in the world2
- Don’t call them fat, call them Marshmallow Girls!3
- Beautiful gym babe impresses Chinese netizens with her incredible fitness!【Pics & GIFs】4
- Japanese netizens put reality on hold for a moment, fall in love with new attorney general of Crimea5
- Picture perfect siblings of 18 years apart melt the hearts of Chinese netizens【Photos】6
- Attack on Titan’s studio head talks sequels, keys to the hit anime’s success7
- Unfortunate Google employee forced to wander alone on eerie abandoned island for Street View photos8
- Chinese Photoshop Trolls and the Half-Blood Prisoner of the Deathly Phoenix Goblet (Part 6)9
- Ghibli’s Hayao Miyazaki says the anime industry’s problem is that it’s full of anime fans10
- So, the Dalai Lama walks into a convenience store in rural Japan… 【Photos】
- 20 crazy facts about North Korea
- Taiwanese student creates incredible art with materials others would throw away【Photos】
- The extreme lengths Samsung must go to make sure your Galaxy phone works perfectly
- Amazing Lego artist spends six months bringing Hatsune Miku into the physical world
- Watch the Singapore Tourism Board video that was so bad it was pulled from YouTube
- A Maasai tribesman in Ginza: How Tokyo fashion empowers women a world away in Africa 【Photos】
- Lady Gaga goes gaga for Hatsune Miku, makes virtual idol her opening act
- Iraqi Shadow of the Colossus is hardcore (plus more fun with bootlegs) 【Photos】
- Doraemon meets Dragon Ball in the weirdest mash up we’ve seen today
- Giant Patlabor robot stands tall in Tokyo even as film’s director calls it “useless” 【Photos】
- 10 things Japan gets awesomely right
- Gadgets before flowers – Japanese moms reveal what they really want for Mother’s Day
- Searching ‘Japan’ on Google Images in 17 different countries (Korea’s results? Just plain weird)