train

7 Japanese daily planners to suit every lifestyle, from hostess to otaku!

For the past six years, I’ve made a point of buying myself a little Rilakkuma daily planner each January and using it to keep track of my appointments, deadlines, to-do lists, etc. These kinds of daily planners are widely used in Japan, perhaps as a result of the Japanese love of punctuality and efficiency (or maybe they’re so punctual and efficient because everyone uses daily planners?) Sure, you could use the functions built into your smartphone or tablet, but there’s something about writing things down that just makes you feel like you’ve got it all together. Also, and this is kind of geeky, but it’s sorta fun to flip through your old schedule books and see what you were up to on x date 3 years ago. In fact, Japan loves schedule books so much that you can now choose from a huge range of styles which are tailor-made to cater to specific lifestyles. Whether you’re a hostess, train otaku or exam-cramming student, there’s a schedule book out there for you!

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Tokyo train delayed due to the strangest of reasons

The JR East Musashino Line sure has an impressive track record when it comes to trains being delayed due to unusual circumstances. And after a most bizarre early morning collision on Friday last week, the rail line can add another reason to that list. 

Although the details of the incident are still murky, one thing is for certain–no one ever expected this to happen in the middle of Tokyo!

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Osaka police looking for woman who jumped in front of train, lived, and ran away

Weirdness broke out on the afternoon of 16 November in Osaka. Several witness claimed to have seen a woman jump onto the tracks of Izumiotsu Station just as a train was approaching. However, after the train arrived there was no sign of injury and the woman was last seen running away on the platform.

How the woman got on the tracks, survived the train, or escaped is unclear and an investigation is underway. Internet detectives well-versed in manga, however, are assuming that she was summoned by a big black orb in an apartment somewhere.

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Just a bunch of adorable cats riding on trains in Japan

Sometimes, after a long day of napping and begging for treats, a cat’s just gotta get out of the house. And what better way to get around than by Japan’s famously on-time and impeccably clean railway? If you’re still walking or taking taxis to your desired destination, take a lesson from these street-smart felines and hop on a train!

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Junior high kid has lucky escape, learns why walking while using a smartphone isn’t a good idea

Cell phones, and smartphones in particular, are amazing tools. They let us keep in touch with our friends and family, provide us with incredibly convenient maps and directions when we are lost, and are the ultimate tool in settling bar bets. They are our life support, our life line to everything, so what happens when our every waking moment revolves around it?

There have been numerous issues recently about people who endanger those around them when they constantly look at their phone while walking. A junior high school boy in Nagoya found out just how dangerous staring at your phone can be, both to himself and to the hundreds of people he put in danger.

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Now that’s clever! Yurikamome line’s new ergonomic seats are designed to keep you in your place

There’s something about being on public transport that seems to bring out the worst in us. Whether we’re talking on our phones, bringing smelly food onboard, or taking sly swigs of chūhai when we think no one’s looking, most of us are guilty of some kind of train faux pas.

A company in Japan has come up with an ingenious design solution to a very particular kind of anti-social behaviourpeople taking up more than their fair share of space on the train.

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Get in the mood for the weekend with the Perth party train!

Get inspired for the weekend with this fun YouTube video from Down Under! It’s sure to leave a big smile on your face and an itch to get your dancing shoes on.

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Police officer arrested for assaulting 2 train station attendants in Saitama

Saitama prefectural police said Monday that a 54-year-old police officer has been arrested after he assaulted two train station attendants.

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Little girl riding the subway in China threatens to kill older woman, bystanders gasp in disbelief

Most of us grew up being taught to respect our elders. In fact, this is one of the most fundamental values traditionally taught to Chinese children. But the video we’re about to see is a stark reminder that the times they are a-changing, and that even in China there are some real brats who think nothing of verbally abusing their elders.

Watch as this little Chinese girl threatens to kill the older woman after she apparently took a photo of her misbehaving onboard the train.

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Train groper escapes along tracks at Ebisu station in Tokyo

A man suspected of groping a woman on the JR Yamanote line escaped by jumping onto the tracks at JR Ebisu station in Tokyo on Thursday night. His actions delayed trains along the Yamanote line for about 30 minutes, TBS reported Friday.

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Osaka police sergeant arrested for putting smartphone between woman’s legs on train

A 41-year-old police sergeant from the Osaka Tondabayashi police station has been arrested after it was discovered that while riding in a train, he put his smartphone between a woman’s legs.

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Two men die in apparently separate suicides after jumping in front of the same train

Komabatodamae Station was the scene of a bizarre suicide yesterday as two men who seemingly had nothing to do with each other took their own lives by leaping in front of the same train.

At around noon on 11 August, an express train struck and killed the men after they jumped into its path about 20 meters apart.

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Attack on Titan stamp rally perfect for Japanese-speaking train fans, probably sucks for everyone else

A stamp rally, a promotional event in which you rush, saunter or dawdle around a local area collecting rubber stamps from checkpoints, is a popular summer activity in Japan. It often takes the form of a themed rubber stamp chained to an inky board that can be found at each station along a railway line, thus encouraging kids (and their accompanying, ticket-buying parents) to visit a bunch of places by train during the summer holidays.

Rubber stamps aren’t just for kids, though. Adults are welcome to collect the stamps in a book to keep for themselves, or if you catch ‘em all on the promotional leaflet and hand it in to the organisers, you can sometimes win some cool prizes or goods relating to the show or characters being promoted. And this summer, Attack on Titan attempts to bring the stamp rally kicking and screaming into the 21st century, with a railway rally entitled Attack on Chichibu. The twist: it’s a stamp rally where there aren’t any stamps.

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Cat takes a trip on a train, just like in a Studio Ghibli movie!

Ever felt the sudden urge to go on a solo journey to some place unknown, or just to wander around aimlessly to take a break from the sights and sounds you’re accustomed to? This cat in Miyagi Prefecture, Japan, seems to have caught the wanderlust bug too, and hopped on to a local train for a ride!

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UK company buys Japanese netizen’s creepy Thomas doodle, turns it into a T-shirt

Only in this day and age can a completely disturbing drawing of Thomas the Tank Engine created in Japan be discovered by a company nearly half a world away in the UK, and then be purchased from the Japanese artist and turned into a T-shirt. Ladies and gentlemen, this is the power of the internet at its best (or worst, depending on how you look at it).

And if this drawing looks familiar, it should. Read on to find out more.

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The 2,900 km/h train: China could soon have maglev faster than commercial jet

Scientists at Southwest Jiaotong University in China have built a prototype testing platform for a near-vacuum high-speed maglev train that is theoretically capable of reaching speeds up to 2900 km/h or about 1,800 mph. Currently, the fastest commercially operated maglev reaches just 431 km/h and even the world record is just 581 km/hr.

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Station worker becomes literal door man, probably regrets coming to work that day

In most countries, if an outer train door broke they’d stop the train until it was fixed. But this is Japan, and they have a schedule to keep! And so one poor station worker ended up wishing he’d stayed home that day after clearly losing at rock, paper, scissors…

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JR East putting on love-handles for Valentine’s Day

Imagine getting on a train after slogging through the slush-filled streets of Tokyo under a grey cloud-filled sky. With the usual packed row of seats, you’re forced to stand while you manipulate your Twitter feed with only one hand.

Then you begin to notice and odd sensation in the hand you’re using to keep your footing as the train jerks and rattles along. The strap you had unwittingly chosen feels a little different to normal. Looking up, you discover that it is in fact in the shape of a heart, and next to it is another heart-shaped hand strap being held into by another. Then your two eyes meet and you’re both struck by what Michael Corleone referred to as a “lightning bolt.”

This is exactly the kind of scene Japan Rail East hoped will play out in the days leading up to Valentine’s Day when they installed a single pair of heart-shaped hand straps on trains running along the Keiyo Line.

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Oh the things you’ll see when glancing at a nearby passenger’s phone on the trains of Japan

When you’re crammed into a train car during rush hour in Japan and almost everyone has a smartphone in their hands, you sometimes can’t help but look at what someone’s doing on their phone. Moreover, when you have a mix of seated and standing commuters, things get even more interesting, enabling a perfectly positioned passenger to sneak peaks at an unsuspecting person’s private messages. As you’d expect, you come across some really weird stuff when no one thinks you’re looking. Let’s take a look at five anecdotes from passengers who just happened to glance over at their nearby passenger’s phone.

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The top 10 things cool guys do on the trains of Japan

Have you ever looked over while riding the Yamanote Line and saw the coolest guy you’ve ever seen? Sure he was probably wearing fashionable clothes and had great hair, but what was he doing? A poll conducted by Japanese mobile phone provider, NTT Docomo, reveals the top 10 things cool guys do on the train.

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