Tougher law means bleak future for ticket scalpers

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In Japanese, a ticket scalper is called a dafuya, a word created -- as is often done in underworld slang -- by reversing the syllables for fuda (a ticket or token) and adding the suffix ya to indicate a business or profession. According to Asahi Geino (March 21), ticket scalping… Read


The whole tooth and nothing but the tooth


What are you, the patient, to do? You have a bad tooth. You know nothing about teeth. You can’t help yourself. You’re in your dentist’s hands. What he or she says is true. What he or she recommends is best. But what if the dentist is a profiteer? Or not… Read


Brain expert warns parents of horrors that await juvenile smartphone users


Dr Ryuta Kawashima, executive director of the Smart-Aging Research Center at Tohoku University, is a neuroscientist widely known for his research into aging. Writing in the March issue of Bungei Shunju, Kawashima discusses the latest research findings into smartphone use by juveniles, which involved testing of primary- and middle-school students.… Read


Tokyo's Shin-Okubo ethnic enclave still evolving


It was the huge popularity of "Yon-sama" (actor Bae Yong-joon) -- male lead in the weepy South Korean TV drama "Winter Sonata" televised here in 2003 -- that's said to have really put Tokyo's Shin-Okubo district on the map. Just one train stop from the capital's largest commuter rail station… Read


How to approach, or respond to the approach, of a neglected child living in your neighborhood


Poor kid. She’s an elementary school sixth grader with nowhere to go after school. Her parents are divorced. She lives with her father, who’s at work all day and seems to have no attention to spare for her. She wanders the streets in a filthy tattered sweater that shows her… Read


Any extra room left aboard that moving van for our 'moving refugees?'


There's been lots of news these days about labor shortages in various industries. One of them, reports Yukan Fuji (Feb. 24) is household transport firms, and their recent difficulties in meeting market demand has generated a new term, hikkoshi nanmin ("moving refugees"), to describe people prevented from moving to their… Read


'Yame-hara' - pressuring resigning workers not to quit


According to data from the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, about one out of three of the class of new company freshmen who entered companies in April 2015 have left their place of employment. But going through with quitting a job, it seems, isn't all that easy. To explore… Read


Why SNS videos of store, restaurant personnel doing stupid things are proliferating


A restaurant chef rubs a raw chicken vigorously over the floor, then tosses it into the fry pan. Another, at another restaurant, fishes sushi he’s preparing out of a trash can. A third, in a third establishment, blows tobacco smoke into the cooking pot. Somewhere else we see someone washing… Read


Lapses in commuter manners change with the times


The main feature in Weekly Tokyo Keizai (Feb 16) is the current state and future plans of Japan's commuter rail networks. The 19th of the section's 20 pages is devoted to the problems of passenger manners. We have insights into what commuters find most annoying thanks to an annual survey conducted by the… Read


Age limits - whatever you’re doing, you can’t do it forever


No sooner have we grown up than we start growing old – a melancholy reflection for which we can thank Spa! (Feb 12-19). You’re 20 years old, and working, let’s say, for a moving company, carrying heavy furniture into and out of houses, into and out of trucks. It’s hard… Read

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