Tokyo restaurant’s crazy huge rice omelet has 600 grams (1.3 pounds) of rice

It’s not uncommon to describe a meaty dish by listing how much beef it contains. McDonald’s has had plenty of success with the Quarter Pounder, and some American restaurants will tout their steaks as being 10 ounces or more.

But have you ever stopped to think about how much rice is on your plate? We recently sent one of our reporters to a restaurant in Tokyo to take on a rice omelet, one of Japan’s favorite comfort foods, made with a staggering 600 grams (1.3 pounds) of rice.

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The perfect place for a Tokyo catnap? Under the statue of Japan’s most famous dog, of course!

Tokyo’s Shibuya is one of the busiest parts of one of the world’s busiest cities. Ginza is filled with high-class cafes, Harajuku is bordered by the tranquil Meiji Shrine, and Shinjuku’s Shinjuku Gyoen is a sprawling green space in the center of the city, but Shibuya is all glitzy entertainment, fashionable boutiques, and trendy restaurants.

But even in Shibuya, every now and then something happens that makes people stop in their tracks and take a moment to smile, like the sight of this adorable kitty taking a nap under the statue of Japan’s most famous pooch.

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Women in Tokyo are cutting through stress and fat with this new “Katana Exercise” class

There’s a growing fitness trend in Tokyo, but it’s nothing new really, being based on age-old traditions: Katana Exercise.

Not only will you be taught to swing a sword like a samurai by a handsome teacher, but you’ll cut out stress and extra fat. Check out our hands-on experience of the class after the jump!

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New Tokyo restaurant promises food that tastes like crap: actual poo-flavored curry

It’s getting harder and harder to be truly original these days, and nothing much seems to surprise anymore. And then something like Curry Shop Shimizu opens in Tokyo. This is a real curry restaurant that specializes in poo-flavored curry.

The very notion of that is sure to send a flurry of questions up to the old cranium, the biggest one no doubt being “How do they know what poo tastes like?” Well, they actually have a good explanation for that, along with answers to other questions you may be pondering…

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Jump back in time with this super high-quality video of Tokyo taken right after WWII 【Video】

This month marks the 70th anniversary of end of World War II. There’s a lot to remember from that time period, much of it horrific, some of it humorous, and some of it downright amazing. But perhaps the most powerful images from that time are just of ordinary people getting on with their regular lives.

And now, thanks to a Belgian DJ, we can catch of glimpse into the life of ordinary Japanese people in the years right after WWII. The background video to one of his songs is an absolutely beautifully recorded film of daily life in Tokyo. And this video is not your typical 1940s quality; it looks like it could have been recorded today!

So prepare to take a walk down the street of 1940s Tokyo and see how different, and similar, it is to now.

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We say goodbye to our Japan Wish winner and look back on her time in Japan【Video】

Ashley is now safely back in the US after her exciting adventure here in Japan, so it’s time for a wrap-up post!

Our Japan Wish competition winner’s time with us was a whirlwind of fun, food, and typhoons as her dream of coming to Japan became a reality. Go ahead and watch the video below for a glimpse at just some of the amazing things Japan has to offer for a visitor, as well as to see Ashley’s emotional goodbye.

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Kawaii Monster Cafe opens in Harajuku with a pop of color and, you guessed it, cute monster girls

Japan’s newest concept restaurant held its grand opening on August 1 in Tokyo’s Harajuku district, which is well-known as Japan’s mecca for zany subculture fashions and youth culture.

We haven’t had a chance to go to the Kawaii Monster Cafe yet, but based on the pictures of its lavish decorations positively bursting with color and Alice in Wonderland-esque bizarreness, we’d say it looks well worth the trip!

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Tickets on sale for commemorative Back to the Future concert in Tokyo featuring full orchestra

2015 marks the 30th anniversary of the classic 80s blockbuster film Back to the Future. And if you consider yourself a fan of the movie series, then you’re in for a treat! In honour of this milestone, a special commemorative Back to the Future concert event is being planned! You’ll have the chance to go back in time and relive the adventures of Marty McFly with a concert featuring a screening of the movie accompanied by a live full orchestra.

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Tokyo man arrested for stealing women’s “treasures” and other general creepiness

Tokyo Metropolitan Police have announced the arrest of one Shochi Nagata for allegedly sending an email to a woman in her 30s containing photos of herself along with pictures of her shoes and underwear which he had stolen, together with the caption: “I’ve just snatched your treasures.”

Further investigation is also hinting that the suspect was in the possession of a veritable bounty of other women’s “treasures” as well, making him something of a modern-day pervy One-Eyed Willie.

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Snoopy Museum scheduled to open in Tokyo’s Roppongi

As the glitzy center of Tokyo’s nightlife scene, Roppongi is best known for its high-profile dance clubs, high-class restaurants, and high-cover charge bars. But even if you’ve got no interest in dancing, dining, or drinking, there’s a new attraction coming to the neighborhood: the Snoopy Museum.

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Tokyo’s Setagaya Ward to begin legally recognizing same-sex partnerships

In a landmark move last February, Shibuya Ward in Tokyo announced it would begin legally officiating same-sex partnerships, giving gay couples the same rights as married heterosexual couples. While the movement, set to begin in October this year, has received some scrutiny, it has also seen plenty of support.

Now, in what may be the beginning of a domino effect, one of Shibuya’s neighboring wards, Setagaya, has also announced that it will be offering the same legal recognition to same-sex couples, beginning this November.

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Faster than a speeding bullet! Ride the Tokyo to Kyoto “Nozomi” Shinkansen with us! 【Video】

Even if you’re not exactly a trainspotting otaku, chances are you still find the idea of riding a Japanese bullet train seriously appealing. After all, those things get up to some crazy speeds, and the whole process runs like smooth, scientifically adjusted clockwork. Even the cleaning crew get their job done, making the trains absolutely spotless, in seven minutes max!

But if you haven’t quite made it to Japan yet, then we invite you to take a Shinkansen ride with us and our Japan Wish competition winner Ashley. Strap yourself in and feel those G-forces!

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Japanese photographer captures gorgeous photos of timeless building facades in Tokyo

It must take Hitoshi Kobayashi a long time to walk anywhere if his collection of photographs is any indication. The photographer has been gaining attention online for his galleries of photos dedicated solely to the facades of local buildings tucked away in the quiet streets and alleyways of suburban Tokyo. In fact, taking a stroll through his pictures is almost like being spirited away to another world and time altogether. 

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New Tokyo hotel lets you sleep in a bookstore

Bookstores are really relaxing places, particularly since many Japanese ones have responded to the rise of digital publishing by merging with cafes and creating inviting places to hang out and peruse the goods. With the quiet babble of background noise and a squishy chair to sink into, you may find your eyelids drooping over the new Murakami. However, a comfy chair is not a bed and the stores are generally not open 24 hours, so if you give in to sleep, you’ll probably find yourself turfed out at closing time with a crick in your neck.

If this has been a problem for you in the past, you’ll want to reserve a spot at Book and Bed, a new hotel in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro neighborhood that invites bibliophiles to sleep in the stacks.

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Chill out with a tasty shaved ice treat from Mercedes-Benz’s ICE MONSTER tie-in shop

We’re not even halfway through summer here in Japan yet, and already we’ve seen a number of strange collaboration combinations, including barley and eel soda and soft-serve sushi.

This time we’d like to introduce another curious combination, in the form of a new Mercedes-Benz x Ice Monster shop that recently popped up in Roppongi, Tokyo. But what do luxury car makers know about making the perfect frozen ice treat? Our ever-popular reporter Mr. Sato heads out to investigate.

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Japanese Twitter users can’t help but respond to suggestive-looking starfish with crude humor

It’s hard being an adult sometimes. Once you become a grown-up, the world starts expecting you to possess a certain level of maturity, which includes things like powering through your Aunt Virginia’s special turnip casserole without gagging, not engaging your Uncle Ted about his uninformed political views on Facebook, or trying not to turn everything you see or hear into something sexually suggestive.

But there are some situations where the lattermost just can’t be avoided. Like when Japanese Twitter user Kojiro decided to take a trip to his local aquarium and came across this curious-looking starfish that, no matter how you look at it, looks like a certain part of the male anatomy. Well, to some dirty-minded folk anyway…

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Is super-salty Tokyo ramen too much umami for foreign tastes? 【Video】

Ramen is the ultimate Japanese hunger-busting food. With its combination of greasy, fatty soup combined with carb-heavy noodles, it’s the perfect meal for when you’re REALLY hungry in Tokyo (or just really hungover.) But that doesn’t mean that this taste is for everyone. In fact, there’re probably a lot of people out there who just can’t handle that heavy hit of garlicky, salty grease.

Our Japan Wish competition winner Ashley mentioned in her winning video entry that she really wanted to get a taste of Tokyo ramen. We accompanied her to Ramen Jiro to watch as her tastebuds tangled with the pungent umami of a bowl of their finest slurping fare. Unfortunately, Ashley soon realised that the reality of the truly salty ramen might be a little hard to swallow – along with the actual ramen itself! Check out our video report!

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What are Tokyo trains at rush hour really like? Check out our eyewitness account!【Video】

Tokyo’s Shinjuku Station is the Guinness World Record holder for busiest transport hub in the world, with an average of 3.64 million people passing through the station, which has 36 platforms and over 200 exits, each and every day. And it’s never busier than during the morning rush hour, with commuters from all over Tokyo and its neighbouring prefectures pouring through the station on their way to work. No wonder the trains are so crowded!

Since Ashley, our Japan Wish” competition winner is currently in town soaking up as much Japanese culture as she can, we thought it would be great if she could experience the rush hour crush for herself and share her thoughts with her fellow RocketNews24 readers.

Check out the video we took of Ashley being squished like a sardine and see for yourselves how she rates the experience!

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Sayonara, stadium! Tokyo tosses out design for 252 billion-yen Olympic site, starts from scratch

I’ve got nothing but love for Tokyo, and I’ve spent a good chunk of my adult life working and playing in Japan’s city of cities. Still, I remember having mixed emotions when it was announced as the site of the 2020 Olympics.

Like everyone at RocketNews24, I truly believe Japan is an awesome place, and I’m happy whenever something happens that gets people to take a peek at what’s going on here. But I was worried that in the run-up to the 2020 Olympics, Japan would embark on a glut of overly extravagant construction projects, building needlessly expensive stadiums that would fall into disuse or disrepair soon after the Games ended, as has happened in so many other host cities.

That certainly seemed to be what was happening with Tokyo’s New National Stadium. Every few months came a new report that cost estimates had been revised up yet again, and the expected price tag recently soared to 252 billion yen (US$2.02 billion). Finally, though, the Tokyo Olympics organizers have said enough is enough, and they’ve decided to toss out the existing design completely and start over from scratch.

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We scarf down all-you-can-eat fried chicken at a Tokyo pub

Let it never again be said that America is the only country that has an unhealthy relationship with fried foods.

While you may not find such cynically, blatantly unhealthy fare as fried butter and fried Oreos  here in Japan, you will find that many square meals consumed in Japan are going to come with some kind of fried food. A lot of times the default is karaage, a dish that is basically the Japanese analogue to American fried chicken, and an item that Japanophiles the world over desperately, vainly argue is somehow healthier than American fried chicken by virtue of its, uh… Japanese-ness or something?

The truth is, karaage is every bit as unhealthy as fried chicken from anywhere else and the Japanese are just as prone to gorging on it to the point of discomfort. Don’t believe us? Exhibit A: This all-you-can-eat fried chicken restaurant we went to for, uh… “research purposes.”

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