Shop takes revenge on unauthorized parking with shopping cart prison

Shop takes revenge on unauthorized parking with shopping cart prison

Parking can be hard to come by and expensive in Japan, so shop owners who are lucky enough to have a parking lot take their “customers only” policy pretty seriously, but having a car towed can be time-consuming and problematic. One shop in Okayama Prefecture came up with a very creative way to punish rule breakers.

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Five tips to be the perfect boyfriend (as taught by Japanese dating simulators)

Five tips to be the perfect boyfriend (as taught by Japanese dating simulators)

Among Japan’s bigger pop cultural head scratchers is the dating simulation. Whereas people around the globe can agree on the entertainment potential of video games that let you drive high performance cars (Gran Turismo), shoot people (Call of Duty) or some combination of the two (Grand Theft Auto), having a digital dating partner remains primarily a feature of the Japanese gaming landscape.

And while it’s tempting to write the genre off as appealing to only the sweatiest and smelliest of nerdy males, dating simulators have a whole sub-genre known as otome (maiden) games that let female players pick from among a stable of hunky love interests.

The creative team at Cybird, developers of the popular Ikemen series of dating simulators, recently shared the five characteristics of an ideal virtual beau.

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This funny Pikachu pancake is a perfect flop

This funny Pikachu pancake is a perfect flop

If you’re a Pokémon fan, this “Let’s make Pikachu pancakes!” mould is sure to excite you. One Japanese fan recently tried to make her own Pika-licious snack, but her resulting creation went terribly wrong. We wanted to share these fail-blog worthy pictures with you.

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From children to netizens: Asian international relations have a long way to go

From children to netizens: Asian international relations have a long way to go

We here at RocketNews24 occasionally get hit with accusations of having an anti-China or anti-Korea slant. And while we don’t think a story about a young Chinese man getting a seatless bicycle wedged in his butt is inherently anti-Chinese, we can see how it might be interpreted that way. We can also see how we get labeled as anti-other-Asian-countries since we largely get our information from Japanese sources, and it would be naive to say there aren’t anti-Chinese and anti-Korean forces at play within the Japanese media. You couldn’t hope for a better example than the following story that was said to have been posted by a Chinese person on a message board. The anecdote has a lot to say about how Chinese children are raised to view Japan. However, the reaction to the story itself is more revealing about what it’s like on the other side.

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Godzilla is finally discovered in the ocean’s depths!

Godzilla is finally discovered in the ocean’s depths!

Well, sort of. OK, so that title is a bit misleading. But an article on Yomiuri Online the other day confirmed that researchers have discovered a new underwater geological formation, the largest of its kind in the world, south of the Japanese mainland. Furthermore, they have named it after everyone’s favorite King of the Monsters! This “new Godzilla” could even shed light on some secrets about the inside of the earth. Keep reading to find out more about this amazing scientific discovery.

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Japanese idol fan prepares to meet his favorite singer by filling out a marriage application

Japanese idol fan prepares to meet his favorite singer by filling out a marriage application

While the 48-member, Tokyo-based AKB 48 still holds the spot as Japan’s top idol singer unit, its sister troupes around the country are no slouches either. NMB 48, which operates out of Osaka’s Namba neighborhood, joined the sorority of tri-letter mega-groups produced by the prolific Yasushi Akimoto in 2011.

NMB 48 has followed its predecessor’s lead in providing fans with a high level of personal access to its members. Aside from regularly holding concerts in their proprietary theatre, the performers of NMB 48 occasionally hold events where they greet and shake hands with their adoring supporters.

It’s an exciting opportunity for any fan to press palms with their idol, and it’s understandable that some hope to make an impression on their favorite, either with a heartfelt smile, a kind word of encouragement, or a legally binding marriage proposal.

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Japan’s rarest cars, from exotic sports coupes to Toyota’s answer to the Hummer

Japan’s rarest cars, from exotic sports coupes to Toyota’s answer to the Hummer

For decades, the automobile industry has been one of the driving forces behind the Japanese economy. But for every Camry, Civic, or Miata that went on to international success, Japan’s carmakers have produced a model that came and went so quickly that you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who’s even seen one on the street, let alone actually driven one.

Today, we present a field guide to Japan’s rarest, most frequently forgotten rides.

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Car surfing reportedly being banned by Saudi Arabian killjoys

Car surfing reportedly being banned by Saudi Arabian killjoys

Sometimes, I feel sorry for kids in today’s safety zealous world. More and more, it seems like the things I grew up with are being banned, whether it’s the thrilling bloodsport of dodgeball or the razor’s edge of a cafeteria in which some people are allowed to eat peanut butter.

Now comes the latest step in the inevitable march towards a global nanny state, as Saudi Arabia is apparently moving to ban the undeniably safe pastime of car surfing.

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If you give a mouse a cookie… you might get some chocolate in return

If you give a mouse a cookie… you might get some chocolate in return

Twitter user @sazaki0 recently got an unpleasant surprise when she discovered a mouse had taken up residence in her house, but this particular mouse had far better manners than your average rodent, offering a gift of chocolate to the lady of the house. Her full story after the jump.

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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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