funny

Owner publicly shames misbehaving cat on Twitter, it regrets nothing

“That damn cat!” Now, that’s a phrase that even the most doting cat owner has surely uttered more than once. As much as we love our kitties, they do seem to have an affinity for testing the limits of our affection–tearing up shoji and mercilessly knocking any object that dares to be close the edge of any desk, table, or counter onto the floor. Despite the best training efforts, it eventually becomes necessary to just admit that although cats may live indoors, they’re not exactly “domestic.”

Unless you’re this cat owner, who decided to shame her misbehaving cat on Twitter!

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Holiday travelers in China get sleepy, creative and frisky on trains 【Photos】

Here in Japan, we’ve still got a couple of weeks to go until our next public holiday, when Sports Day comes up on October 13. Workers in China, though, can look forward to a day off much sooner with National Day of the People’s Republic of China on October 1.

The holiday marks the founding of the nation, and many people choose to spend their time off by visiting family members. The travel rush seems to have already started, but with a country as large as China, some passengers are in for a long ride back to their home towns. But when you’re spending hours upon hours on a train how do you get some shut-eye without springing for a sleeper car? By being inventive and literally flexible, as these photos show us.

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Fan offers theory that Ghibli’s Tombo grew up to be another beloved children’s character

While the settings of Studio Ghilbi’s anime are filled with whimsy and fantasy, their characters can at times seem remarkably real. Even if you’ve never found a forest serviced by a network of Cat Buses, for example, the emotions that Totoro’s Mei and Satsuki deal with feel so genuine that you can’t help but think of them as real people who’ll eventually grew up and continue their lives long after the movie ends.

The same goes for the cast of Kiki’s Delivery Service. But while it’s easy to imagine titular witch Kiki continuing to work in the magical courier industry throughout her adulthood, what about her friend, Tombo? One fan recently offered his theory on what the future holds for the bespectacled lad.

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Creative problem solving: Vending machine dispenses cans with 5 yen coins taped to them

One cool thing about living in Japan is that, whether you’re in a bustling city or the open countryside, you’re never too far from a vending machine. True, you won’t find any canned ramen in many machines outside of Akihabara, but so long as there’s power to run one, you’re pretty much always within a few hundred metres of a machine selling both chilled and hot drinks.

We’ve seen some unusual things turning up in Japan’s vending machines over the years, but cans of peach juice with money taped to them is definitely a new one.

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Japanese athletes brighten up our day with new sport of ‘extreme shaving’

Athletes devote their lives to fully unleashing the potential of their bodies and pushing the limits of how far they can go every single day. But what happens when top-performing athletes take something as mundane as shaving seriously? We’re not sure if this is something normal people even wonder about, but Japanese electronics maker Philips already has the answer for us.

To promote of its electric shavers, Philips came up with the “Extreme Shaving Tournament” featuring a number of top athletes from Japan. And guess what? The top shaver gets to shave in outer space!

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Invoice puts Japanese company in running for greenest in Japan, at least as far as names go

Whereas a lot of last names in English come from professions, such as Smith, Hunter, and Baker, you don’t find a lot of work-related ones in Japan. Generally, Japanese family names have some sort of connection to the natural environment, such as Ogawa (“Small River”), Yamada (“Mountain Field”), or Takeoka (“Bamboo Hill”).

You could debate whether or not this is the result of a deep-rooted Japanese respect for nature, or simply that for centuries the feudal system forced the vast majority of the population into agriculture. Regardless of the reason, there’s no denying the linguistic phenomenon, as proven by the signatures on this invoice from what appears to be the most ecologically oriented company in Japan, at least in terms of names.

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If you love sushi so much, why don’t you marry it with these sushi rings and pendants?

I love sushi. I really can’t overstate that fact, and it’s to the point that I’d totally understand if you asked, “If you love sushi so much, why don’t you marry it?”

First, I’m already married, and there are several ways in which my lovely and human wife is a superior spouse compared to a slice of raw fish, no matter how delicious the latter may be. Second, even if I were single and ready to take my relationship with Japanese cuisine’s most famous discipline to the next level, what kind of ring would I use to propose?

Here with the answer is American designer Carolyn Tillie, who’s crafted a whole line of sushi-themed accessories.

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Sad 3DS user wants Gamecube peripheral for Smash Brothers, genius tinkerer provides

There are few things in life more competitive than Super Smash Brothers (and, like, hot dog eating contests with hamsters). So, even though you can now Smash Brothers on the go with the new 3DS version, truly competitive players don’t want to settle for the 3DS’s inferior, cramped D-pad and button layout.

A clever Japanese Twitter user recently openly dreamed of a better way to Smash Brothers on his 3DS by connecting an old-school Gamecube controller to the portable handheld and, shockingly, another even more genius Twitter user responded with a real-life prototype he made with plentiful engineering skills, his own two hands, and what appears to be a bunch of fresh spaghetti.

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Japanese flutist keeps her cool, plays beautifully even with a butterfly crawling across her face

Part of my job at RocketNews24 is providing English titles for the videos on our YouTube channel. So my knee-jerk reaction when stumbling across a clip, from a different source, with the title “flute performance butterfly stop the face” is to point out the capitalization and syntax errors.

But you know what? Full points to whoever thought it up anyway. That jumbled cocktail of nouns and verbs just about perfectly captures what would run through any of our heads if we experienced what the woman in the video did: a butterfly crawling around her face in the middle of an important flute performance.

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English-learning smartphone app teaches Japanese students to say “I just took a dump”

While the English edition of RocketNews24 is primarily focused on Asia in general and Japan in particular, our Japanese-language sister site, Pouch, covers stories from around the world. Sometimes, the source information they work with is in English, so Pouch’s team members are always on the lookout for ways to brush up their language skills.

So we weren’t shocked to hear that one of Pouch’s writers, Marie, had recently gotten really into a new English-learning smartphone app. What did surprise us, though, was when we took a look at the phrases she was learning, including such nuggets as, “I just took a dump.”

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Squirt hand (job) guns – Weird trigger placement on animal-shaped toys promise a dirty deluge

When you stop and think about it, designing squirt guns is actually a pretty hard job. In an era where people have smartphones, video games, and the wonders of the Internet to keep them entertained, how do you get people to seriously consider shooting tiny sprays of tepid water at one another a viable entertainment option?

One idea is to go for a unique design, like the company that decided to model its guns after bears and leopards. That’s playful, unexpected, and eye-catching right? Unfortunately, guns and four-legged animals ordinarily have very different shapes, and in this case, trying to mash the two together meant the trigger ended up in a place you really shouldn’t touch a grizzly unless you’re looking to get mauled. 

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10 things foreigners do that Japanese people find amusing

Ah, the wonders of learning a second language. There’s much to be said for the sense of satisfaction and achievement that comes from communicating effectively in another tongue. There’s also much to be said about the head-scratching and sense of humility that comes from tripping up and sounding like a buffoon.

We’ve found 10 tweeted tales of confusion from Japanese people who’ve had amusing encounters with foreigners in Japan. Some strike such a chord with Japanese that they’ve been retweeted and shared hundreds, sometimes even thousands of times.

So what is it that we foreigners do that’s so amusing?

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Exciting promotional campaign offers chance to win horrifying cat figure

When it comes to science fiction technology made real, 3-D printing is one of the most exciting. While we might all say we wish we had jet packs, the fact is that 3-D printing had 96.6 percent fewer leg burn injuries in a direct comparison that we just made up and is totally not real. But putting fake statistics aside, 3-D printing not only enables for cheap, efficient manufacturing, it also allows us to make figures out of nearly anything we want with little more than photos and some software.

And to prove it, Ima Topic and DMM.make, the web-based 3-D printing division of web-retailer/video-on-demand company DMM, are offering what can only be described as a horribly awesome campaign: A chance to win a figure of Setsu, the gorgeous, blue-eyed house cat who looks like roadkill when she sleeps. This is one contest you will almost certainly regret winning!

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Man vs. Beast! Competitive eater Kobayashi takes on hamster in hot dog-eating contest 【Video】

I didn’t watch a lot of TV during college, and before you think I’m saying that to try and come off as some high-minded intellectual, I’ll quickly admit that I filled that spare time playing video games and watching anime DVDs. One program I do remember catching, though, was a Fox special in which humans went against animals in a series of contests.

In one event, Takeru Kobayashi, Japan’s champion competitive eater, was pitted against a bear to see who could eat more hot dogs. The bear won with ease, because, well, it’s a bear for God’s sake.

Now, though, Kobayashi’s back for a rematch with the animal kingdom, but this time with a smaller opponent: an adorable hamster.

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Mr. Sato gives his first ever autograph, gets a broken heart in return

Last year, our intrepid Japanese correspondent, Mr. Sato, basked in the limelight as he became the first person in Japan to buy a Docomo iPhone 5S. Now, with the new iPhone 6 and 6 Plus going on sale, he’s determined to capture another five minutes of fame, so he’s been camping out in front of the Docomo store in Tokyo’s downtown Marunouchi district since four days ago.

Lining up so early meant a lot of lonely downtime, but recently Mr. Sato’s day was brightened when a young lady asked him for his autograph! At least, it was brightened for a moment, before he learned the sobering secret behind her request.

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Makeup transformation experts move to character impersonations【Photos】

We’ve previously seen the creative cyber citizens from the Philippines use their amazing makeup techniques to instantly transform themselves into superstars such as Brad Pitt and Miley Cyrus.

Well, things have gotten slightly out of hand since then and makeup transformation enthusiasts have apparently attained the ability of turning themselves into non-human forms. It’s totally bizarre! Check out their super transformations after the break!

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It’s on like Donkey Kong! Netizens crack up over DK’s fearsome taunt

Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS just hit the stores this past week in Japan, and already over a million copies were sold and with so many different characters to choose from, it’s hard to pick a favorite. Maybe it’s not how the character fights but how it ridicules your opponents as they fly off the battlefield. Nintendo always has their staple characters that have appeared in every Smash Bros. game so far, but there’s one whose taunts are more hilarious than the rest: the master of the bongos himself, Donkey Kong!

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Meet the unforgettable teachers at quite possibly the coolest cram school ever

You’ve probably heard stories about the horrors of Japanese juku, otherwise known as cram schools, where children go after an already grueling day at regular school to receive even more academic instruction in specific subject areas. Most students attend these costly schools in the hopes of gaining even a few extra points on their high school or university entrance examinations, whether it’s by their own volition or because they’re being forced to go by their parents. So unless you’re someone who genuinely enjoys the process of studying, you can see why just the thought of juku conjures up dread in so many Japanese students.

Determined to dispel the image of cram schools as torture chambers for weary students who would much rather be watching TV or playing video games in the evening, one such juku has decided to take a completely different approach in the way that it attracts students to its classes. And after seeing the following pictures, you might just be convinced to go back to class yourself!

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Cute cat bank collects coins, makes fiscal responsibility adorable 【Videos】

With money in Japan, the smallest denomination of bill is 1,000 yen (US $9.35), which means that you often end up having a ton of change in your pocket. With awesome vending machines on seemingly every corner, there’s an ever-present temptation to blow piles of coinage on canned drinks, especially now that some come with prizes.

Still, if you’ve got the willpower to make it home with a few coins left, you can treat yourself to a little reward if you also happen to have one of these awesomely cute motorized cat coin banks.

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Toyota owner goes crazy with new driver marks, earns a little extra lane space on the road

Japan has a couple of unique automotive regulations. For example, every other year cars have to undergo an extensive inspection to make sure they’re being properly maintained and haven’t been illegally modified (although you can get away with some pretty interesting modifications in the 24 months between checks). You have to make a full stop at all railroad crossings, regardless of whether or not there’s a train coming.

For new drivers, there’s even an additional rule, which states that for their first year on the road, they have to put a large sticker on their car advising surrounding motorists to be extra careful. But while the law states the vehicle must bear two stickers, one on the front and one on the rear, there’s apparently no upper limit, as one proud owner recently demonstrated.

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