Kids' neighborhoods can affect their developing brains, a new study finds


Children growing up in more disadvantaged neighborhoods – meaning those with poor housing quality, more poverty and lower levels of employment and education – show observable increases in brain activity when viewing emotional faces on a screen, according to our team’s new study. But importantly, we found that this association… Read


'Edo era' Coke machine is an amazing work of camouflage and craftsmanship

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"A vending machine that's overly concerned with (blending into) the urban landscape." This is how Japanese Twitter user Saho.explorer (@urbex_34) captioned the photo of an unusual vending machine he saw during his most recent travels. Saho.explorer enjoys photographing abandoned buildings, landscapes, and unusual architecture in Japan and abroad, the results… Read


Things people started during the pandemic but soon wound up quitting


In Japanese, a person who starts engaging in some activity only to soon give up is referred to as a mikka bozu (a monk for three days). Weekly Playboy (June 20) set out to poll people about things they'd initiated from early in the pandemic, only to throw in the… Read


Japanese Recipe Adventures: Hiyashi chuka


Hiyashi chuka is my go-to dish as soon when it’s warm enough to stop wearing long sleeves. The cool noodles and the refreshing tang of the vinegar really hit the spot on a hot summer night, and it helps that there’s not a lot of cooking to do, so I’m not sweating buckets by… Read


Global hotel occupancy surpasses 2019 levels for first time


According to Amadeus’ Demand360 business intelligence data, hotel reservations have been on par with pre-pandemic 2019 booking levels since March of this year. April 2022 was the first month to surpass 2019 occupancy levels and this continued to climb in May hitting a new high of 63%, compared to 60%… Read


When texts suddenly stop: Why people ghost on social media


Check your phone. Are there any unanswered texts, snaps or direct messages that you’re ignoring? Should you reply? Or should you ghost the person who sent them? Ghosting happens when someone cuts off all online communication with someone else, and without an explanation. Instead, like a ghost, they just vanish.… Read


China's coastal ecosystems still unhealthy despite recent progress, official says


Most of China's marine ecosystems are still in poor health despite recent improvements, and more efforts are needed to restore, protect and monitor coastal waters, an environment ministry official says. "Most of the typical marine ecosystems that are monitored remain in a sub-healthy condition," said Zhang Zhifeng, deputy director of… Read


Webinar: How to study Japanese in Japan


Learn everything you need to know to study Japanese in Japan presented by GaijinPot Study. From the process of enrolling in a Japanese language school to applying for a visa and career opportunities for bilingual foreigners. The webinar will be held live online on Tuesday June 28 from 6:30 p.m.… Read


Airport chaos: European travel runs into pandemic cutbacks


Got European travel plans this summer? Don't forget to pack your passport, sunscreen and plenty of patience. Liz Morgan arrived at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport 4 1/2 hours before her flight to Athens, finding the line for security snaking out of the terminal and into a big tent along a road… Read


Famima Laundry: Japanese convenience store adds laundromat to store in Tokyo


As of May 31, there are 16,564 FamilyMart stores around Japan. And out of all of these thousands of branches, only 33 of them offer something extra special for customers — a laundromat called Famima Laundry. It’s not every day you get to see a FamilyMart with a coin laundry inside, so… Read

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