Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Injured Bad on Google Video

This is cute.

And here is one we put up. We made it this summer for a kick, and now its getting all kinds of hits on google video. Must be some bored people out there.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Tiramisu Daifuku Mochi Dessert

Tiramisu Daifuku Mochi Dessert
Originally uploaded by fatblueman.
This is the most incredible dessert I have had in some time. Just had to tell someone about it. If you are in Nagoya, run don't walk to Nigiri No Tokube, the kuru kuru sushi, or kaiten sushi, or sushi bar, whtever you want to call it, in Oasis 21 in Sakae. It'll be on the conveyor with all the sushi. Cost you 3 bucks.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Wisdom comes with age??

There was an entertaining moment in an English class tonight. We were talking about the expression "beauty is only skin deep" and I had mentioned how a friend in California had told me that it was not a terribly uncommon thing for parents to get their daughters boob jobs for their eighteenth birthdays. The students were shocked and made various disgusted exclamations in Japanese about how for Americans bigger equals better etc, etc, until we were all quieted by the voice of the only other man in the class, a 71 year old guy. He started, "that is terrible thing when people start to do such things,"

We all sighed and waited for more, as it seemed he was getting ready to release some ancient Japanese wisdom about the importance of finding beauty deep within the heart, or something along those lines. He went on,

"Because it is the shape that matters, not so much the size."

Friday, December 09, 2005

Sushi for Dummies

An in depth introduction to sushi - how to enter the restaurant, eat the sushi, let women pour your drink (it is an old Samurai tradition), how to know which ones are from the meat of endangered animals, etc.

Very entertaining. Well for me anyway. From Google video.



Thursday, December 08, 2005

Memoirs of a Geisha

As a Hollywood production headlined by Asian stars, Memoirs of a Geisha does represent a breakthrough of sorts — the story does not use a white character as interloper or interpreter for the Western audience, as is so often the case. Yet it’s consistently marred by Marshall’s need to fetishize every aspect of Japanese culture, resulting in a film that is visually lavish but dramatically inert. Lost amid so many occidental fantasies, Japan could use a better translator.

That seems like the way it is when Hollywood does Japan, ne? They could have at least gotten even just one Nihon-jin to play in one of the lead roles...


Sunday, December 04, 2005

Dragostea din Tei, or Mai Ah Hee as they say it here

In Japan, O-Zone's single "Dragostea din Tei" created a stir when it was released under the name "Koi no Maiahi" with a special Macromedia Flash style video featuring characters similar to the cat Mona (link), who is extremely well known in Japanese BBS circles. The entire song was phonetically translated into Japanese, and while not making very much sense, the DVD single became very popular and was sold in record stores all over Japan. One memorable line of the song sounds like 'noma noma iei' which basically means 'drink, drink, yay!' in Japanese.

from Wikipedia

Some kids I know are constantly singing this song, dancing to this song, choreographing their best moves to this song. So it has gotten into my head, and tonight Diana found it on itunes. You know those songs that are nothing more than ear candy, but just won't get out of your head? Well, if you are a sucker for those ones, you better add this to your collection.

Napoleon Dynamite dancing to it also qualifies as entertaining.

This one also kind of entertaining.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Kazuhide for December...

Dear Kazuhide,
Why do Japanese old people like to don floral bathing caps, walk in the swimming pool and complain about the splashes of swimmers like me? Swimming pools are for swimming, right?

Dear Naomi,
I sorry to saying again, but gaijin women is need to realize the size of enormous hips and waist. It is make dangerous large splashing when dive the pool. Please be careful to not drowning the frightened Japanese swimmer. We has compact, small body.

More Kazuhide at Japanzine

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Now accepting applications for Japanese girlfriends (日本人彼女募集中)

For those who want to balance out the abundance shirts with shockingly strange English with a few of the opposite variety, check out this site. Choose from Japanese versions of "Now accepting applications for Japanese girlfriends", "Respect the Emperor, Expel the foreign devil", "Beware of perverts", and many more.

Studying Kanji on the Web

This is not likely news to anyone who is already studying kanji, as all it took was a quick google search to find, but I thought I would note it for any interested passerby.

Two really good japanese study pages:



Usagi-chan's Genki study page

And users of the Heisig Kanji system, which have been using, will be happy to find this page. It has an online review test tailored to Heisig's system.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Japanese urban legends

True or false:

A Japanese department store once created a Christmas display featuring a smiling Santa Claus nailed to a cross.

Interesting article from snopes on Christmas in Japan, and the cultural clash that ensues.
As you'd expect in a country where less than 1% of the population is Christian (the rest is primarily Shinto or Buddhist), Christmas is a purely secular occasion, with shops and businesses remaining open for the day. The Japanese have adopted many of the traditional trappings of 'Kurisumasu': stores with elaborate displays of Christmas decorations and piped-in Christmas music, and homes made festive with Christmas lights, Christmas trees, and poinsettias. The elimination of the religious aspects of Christmas and its hyper-commercialization have led to some unique (and, to us, bizarre) ways of celebrating it, however.

The exchanging of kurisumasu cakes is not exactly a Western tradition, but it doesn't sound too unusual to us. What we do find unusual is a custom of young couples exchanging presents of expensive jewelry, heading out to high-priced hotels, and being directed by scantily-clad female elves to rooms complete with Christmas trees, where the lovebirds spend their Christmas Eve in romantic bliss. The co-optation of familiar Christmas figures -- both secular and religious -- in the service of mass merchandising has produced some rather curious blendings: Colonel Sanders dressed in a Santa suit (as KFC tried strenuously to promote fried chicken as the "traditional" Christmas meal), nuns singing advertising jingles to the tune of Christmas carols, Christmas cards featuring a ghoulish Santa in a graveyard accompanied by the Virgin Mary on broomstick, elves plastered on sake, and a Christmas revue featuring "stripping nuns and three lecherous Wise Men."