ambrosia comments

Posted in: 2-year-old girl drowns in irrigation ditch in Niigata See in context

This a tragedy. The parents are going to have to live with this for the rest of their lives and I feel terrible for them because of that. I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that they loved their daughter and didn't want her to die. Having said all that, it is still their fault. As parents, it is your job to do all that is within reason to protect your child. No doubt that's hard to hear and sounds harsh but this idea that it was "just an accident" helps no one. I'm not saying the parents should be punished but the reality that raising babies and toddlers is exhausting and requires constant supervision because of what can happen is exactly the sort of thing new/young/careless parents need to hear. Two-year olds are not yet capable of navigating the world safely and you do them no favors by having a lackadaisical attitude about their whereabouts. As difficult as it is for one parent to constantly keep an eye on them, there were two parents here. Let them roam, try out new things, fall and get cut - at the appropriate age! At 2, watch them! I don't care how hard it is. They are your responsibility. So, yes, I feel for these parents but it is their fault. It would be unnecessarily cruel to say that to their faces but the reality is that they already know that and so do we.

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Posted in: Japanese are more subtle and more sensitive. Whereas a strong chocolate will please Parisians, more of then than not, it will be too strong for Japanese. See in context

This guy's no fool. He could just as well have said that Parisians are more discriminating and demand chocolate with a full-bodied flavor which infuses the pallet with distinctive profiles of the region from which the cocoa was grown but he knows that in this market you always boost up the Japanese sense of being sensitive and unique at the expense of some other group. Posters here do it all the time too. Heaven forbid we talk about Japanese beauty without slagging off "the fat, unfeminine nags from the West". We can't mention the relative safety of Japan without making the States seem like a place where you dare not leave your home for fear of being shot. Japan has an interesting cultural history which seems to make many posters conclude that other places don't. Yes, Chef Cloiseau has learned well how to appeal to the local market. Perhaps he reads this site in his spare time.

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Posted in: 2-year-old boy dies after falling into irrigation canal in Saitama See in context

Strangerland: I think you run more risk walking down the road every day than most kids do playing in a group with friends. Do you advocate everyone stopping walking down the road? Do you call it bad living if someone walks down the road? Are people being negligent by walking down the road?

Talk about a strawman argument and a bad analogy to boot! Risks are an inherent part of life, however there are necessary risks, like walking down the road in order to get from point A to point B and unnecessary risks, like allowing a 2-year old to wander about near a canal with a group of children who are clearly not equipped to supervise him properly. I certainly don't advocate trying to shield children from all risks, necessary or unnecessary ones. That said, in order for a 2-year old to have a fighting chance at making it past childhood one would hope that his or her parents would be a little better at assessing what risks are truly unnecessary for the child's development due to the chance for injury or death outweighing the benefits.

Back to your road argument, a parent may deem it necessary to walk down a road with his or her 2-year old and there would be nothing wrong with that. Where the problem would come in or the "bad living" as you put it, would be in not paying attention to where that 2-year old is on the road and doing nothing to ensure his or her safety.

Finally, as most any parent will tell you, a 2-year old may like other children and may even have friends, as a 2-year old can but they really don't play together at that age. For most kids, until they are about 3, what they do is engage in parallel play where they may occasionally share toys or show the other what they are doing but they don't play together the way older children do. It's also quite difficult to imagine a 2 and 10-year old being friends or even a 10 and 4-year old being friends. The language, social and motors skills are just too different. So the notion that this 2-year old was just "playing in a group of friends" is undoubtedly inaccurate. Most likely he was following the other kids or one of the older kids had been charged with watching him, a task he or she was clearly not up to at that age. Again, unnecessary risks and bad decisions resulted in a tragedy not only for the dead child but the children who he was with and who will live with this.

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Posted in: Thousands languishing in children's homes in Japan: Human Rights Watch See in context

jerseyboy: ambrosia -- huh? Don't you see the contradiction in what you are saying? You say that Japanese ae not cold and heartless, but then you say that even if you want to adopt you face "institutional and social hurdles. In my experience institutions and societies reflect the values of that culture. And Japan values the damn family registry and order over compassion and humanity. Sure there are a minority of Japanese who might see this problem, and want to change it. But the majority like the social order the way it is, and thus, hence, as a whole, Japan is cold and heartless.

I suppose I can understand how you came to that conclusion but I simply have a hard time pegging a nation as cold and heartless. I think your average Japanese most likely has no idea how difficult adoption can be and probably spends little to no time thinking about it anyway. That might make them ignorant and apathetic but that's not the same as cold and heartless. For those who have considered adoption but decided against it, there may be a myriad of reasons, some of which may have to do with social or familial pressure. That might make them weak and susceptible but again, that's not the same as cold and heartless.

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Posted in: Should overweight people flying economy class be required to pay for an extra seat? See in context

There are a number of reasons why this is even an issue, starting with the fact that airlines first used the hip width of the average US Air Force pilot to decide how wide airplane seats should be. Not only has that average hip width gotten wider but women very often have wider hips than men and your hips are not the widest part of your body anyway. Your shoulders are. So, you might be fine in the seat but find yourself uncomfortably close to your neighbor in your upper body. Second, airlines have starting putting in more seats per row which means narrower seats. Third, human beings, on average, are two inches taller than they were less than a century ago.

Yes, it's uncomfortable to have someone "spill over" into your seat. By the same token, it's also uncomfortable for that person, both physically and emotionally to be "spilling over". Yes, they could probably lose weight but at the end of the day, your typical airline seat isn't really comfortable for anyone. I have a brother who's 6'3 (1.9 meters) with legs up to my shrimpy 5'5 (1.65 meters) shoulders. Neither or us is at all overweight and neither of us finds flying comfortable, nor does most anyone I know besides those fortunate few who can afford first class. With his legs it's nearly impossible for my brother to sit comfortably without bothering the person in front of him or next to him. My legs aren't really an issue but I do find that I have a hard time comfortably keeping my shoulders and arms in my space, as apparently do many of those I've sat next to while flying.

Making seats at least moderately comfortable wouldn't solve the problem of what to do for those who are greatly overweight but it would make the experience more comfortable for a greater number of passengers.

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Posted in: Thousands languishing in children's homes in Japan: Human Rights Watch See in context

slumdog: So, ambrosia, although you have friends who have done it, as have I, it is still much less rare than in many other countries.

I don't doubt that but I also mentioned "hospital adoptions" which may not be included in official statistics since, according to the article I mentioned, they are very "hush-hush" affairs. Regardless, I don't think the reason is, as some poster would like us to believe, that Japanese are cold and heartless. It's not the norm here for a variety of reasons and even if you want to adopt you face institutional and social hurdles that would keep many of us, Japanese or otherwise, from doing so. My husband is not from Japan and not from a country where people are cold or heartless, if there is really such a place, but he also has, what I consider to be somewhat peculiar ideas about adoption, as do many of his countrymen with whom we've discussed it. The idea that adoption is a normal, beautiful thing about which people can be open is a relatively new concept even in many European countries and North America. It wasn't so long ago that adoptions were very private affairs where even the adopted children might have gone their entire lives not knowing they were adopted and certainly adopting children after infancy wasn't the norm either. Hopefully bringing attention to the situation, in a positive manner, not a negative, accusatory one, can help to change ideas about adoption in Japan and those kids can end up with loving families rather than having to grow up in orphanages. No matter how nice those orphanages are, a loving family which can provide a safe, healthy and happy environment would be a better option.

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Posted in: Thousands languishing in children's homes in Japan: Human Rights Watch See in context

QueenBee Hall: Do they allow foreign couples or mixed (foreigner+Japanese) couples to foster or adopt children here?

Yes, they do. You can adopt even if both parents are non-Japanese.

Frungy: That's why I didn't mention it earlier, because it seems to exist only under very specific conditions, and so realistically "adoption" in Japan is the first type, which more "fostering" than adoption.

Yes, adoption, as it would be understood by most people from Europe or North America, is a long and onerous process in Japan but it is not true that "special adoption is almost never granted". I, along with a few posters here, know couples, non-Japanese in my case, who have done so and we are but a small number so one could reasonably guess that the actual number is larger. One thing to keep in mind too is that a lot of Japanese who do adopt keep it quiet and will go so far as to have the woman move to her parents hometown during her "pregnancy" so that her friends and neighbors don't know that she isn't actually pregnant. A few years ago The Japan Times did a very good story on the whole process and mentioned that a lot of adoptions are what would be called "hospital adoptions" which occur when the child is newly born. In that respect, I don't think Japanese are so unlike people in many countries who prefer to adopt infants despite their being harder to come by and despite many older children living in institutions.

Seirei Tobimatsu: So much beyond our control. If child turns monstrous, would be more endurable if own blood. Could retaliate if not own blood.

Your comment is sad and showed a ridiculous degree of ignorance and small mindedness. I hope you don't actually believe what you've written.

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Posted in: Russia vows to hit back at Japan for denying visas to 23 people See in context

bass4funk: Not if and What I meant was that although Japan just started doing this, it can set an example and unlike Europe Japan is taking action, the U.S. is taking action, but not enough. The U.S. can and should do a whole lot more to put a strangle hold on Russia, so far, it's NOT enough.

Say what you meant the first time and you'll save others the trouble of having to prove you completely incorrect. Or better yet, just get your facts straight before posting.

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Posted in: Checklist for 'black hospitals' to be avoided See in context

gokai_wo_maneku: Ambrosia, you can buy magazines that publish hospital ratings in Japanese.

That's great! What are they called and who or what group is responsible for the standard by which the hospitals are ranked, if you know?

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Posted in: Toyota to move U.S. operations base to Texas See in context

YuriOtani: I would not want to live in Texas as it is freezing in winter and very hot in the summer.

I'm not sure what you consider "freezing" but no matter because Texas is big, bigger than Japan and the weather varies, just as it does in Japan. Texas hill country is humid subtropical with hot summers and cool winters, quite like Tokyo. The coastal areas are warm most of the year, rather like Okinawa or coastal Kyushu. No doubt some of the large urban areas of Texas will suffer from major droughts but then again much of southern California is now experiencing serious drought and so are parts of Oklahoma.

I would tell Toyota please give me another job but not in Texas.

And Toyota would probably tell you to see if someone else was hiring.

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Posted in: Checklist for 'black hospitals' to be avoided See in context

Okay, this is helpful, I suppose but how about a published ranking system with an actual list of the hospitals that should be avoided and the ones that do excellent work? Is anything like that available?

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Posted in: 71-year-old man gets swept into sea, shows up at home a day later needing cash to pay for taxi See in context

What a tough old codger! I think I'd seriously consider him as a teammate on some kind of survival show like The Amazing Race.

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Posted in: Russia vows to hit back at Japan for denying visas to 23 people See in context

bass4funk: Now that's how you do it! Kudos to Japan. Seriously hope Obama is watching this, he could seriously learn something on the first steps on dealing with an out of control Russia.....Believe me buddy, I'm very well read....

If you're so well-read how is it that you think the US can learn from Japan on this one? The US imposed visa restrictions on Russians well over a month ago, March 6th or 7th, if I'm not mistaken.

The White House announced Thursday that the U.S. government is imposing visa restrictions on Russians and others who it says are "threatening the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine," as Congress moves on a separate track to impose more sanctions.

The visa restrictions were placed by the State Department. President Obama also signed an executive order authorizing sanctions against "individuals and entities responsible for activities undermining democratic processes or institutions in Ukraine."

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Posted in: 60% of Japanese support whale hunt; 14% eat whalemeat, survey shows See in context

borax: Headline: A new survey shows that 60% of Japanese don't like being told what to do by people in other countries.

You raise a fair point but on the other hand the decision was handed down by the International Court of Justice which is the principal judicial organ of the the United Nations, of which Japan is a member. Surely they have handed down decisions favoring Japan over another country or countries, in which case Japan must've been quite alright with "telling another country what to do". So, now the shoe is on the other foot. If Japan doesn't like it they could always withdraw from the UN.

CraigHicks: However, in the US and Europe only the blubber of the whale was harvested and the rest thrown away.

That may have been true in the early days of whale hunting but was not true once the hunts became more industrialized. Ambergris was used in perfume, baleen was used in hoop skirts and decorative items such as combs, sperm oil was used in lights, and other parts of the whale were used for candles and lubricants. To learn more about the whaling industry in the early part of America's history, I highly recommend Leviathan: The History of Whaling in America by Eric Jay Dolin. Besides being very informative, it's also just a great read.

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Posted in: 79-year-old woman stabbed to death in Shizuoka home See in context

It would be nice to know if any of her neighbors reported seeing her anytime after the son left for work. That would take some suspicion off him.

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Posted in: Teacher criticized for attending son’s entrance ceremony instead of her own school’s See in context

As the saying goes, "Who, on their deathbed, has ever wished they'd have spent more time at work rather than more time with family?" Good for this woman for knowing what's important before it's too late. One would think that being a good parent who values time with her child would make her a better teacher, more sympathetic to both her students and her parents. Shame on her critics who clearly don't have their priorities straight.

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Posted in: What’s your impression of parental supervision of children when families are out and about in Japan? See in context

randomman: There is no difference between Japanese or Canadian or Australian or US level of supervision of children.

So, does it follow that there are no differences in the way kids are raised in Japan, Canada, Australia or the US? Are there no cultural differences between these places or do they simply not extend to the level of supervision?

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Posted in: Addition of Korean name for Sea of Japan becomes law in Virginia See in context

Ah-so: East Sea" is an utterly meaningless name,giving no clue as to where it is other than if you happen to be in Korea.

Have you never heard the North Sea? The White Sea? The Dead Sea? How do any of their names give clues as to where they are? That's not to mention the numerous seas named after somewhat obscure explorers and old rulers.

Wakarimasen: always amazes me that no-one takes umbrage at the name of the Yellow Sea.....

It always amazes me how people choose to interpret things in a negative manner instead of doing a little simple research.

The Yellow Sea derives its name from the color of the silt-laden water discharged from the numerous Chinese rivers that drain into its waters.

vanostran: And how about the Gulf of California.

How about it? It goes by more than one name already. It's know as the Sea of Cortez or Sea of Cortés or Vermilion Sea and locally known in the Spanish language as Mar de Cortés or Mar Bermejo or Golfo de California.

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Posted in: Tokyo, Yokohama declared cities at highest risk of natural disaster by Swiss insurance company See in context

Loki520: You might wanna reread what he said, compare it to what you misunderstood, and then offer a correction

I didn't misunderstand him so no correction will be offered. He called the people who came up with the study pencil pushers for putting two Japanese first on the list. The list has nothing to do with preparedness and everything to do with - natural disasters, hence the title being Cities Most At Risk of Natural Disasters and not Cities Which Would Be The Least Prepared for a Natural Disaster.

He in NO WAY insinuated the article was a slight against Japan, nor did he say Tokyo is "less prepared" Contrary... he insinuated they are MORE prepared.

Nor did I "insinuate" that he thought Japan was unprepared so perhaps learn how to read before you accuse others of misunderstanding things.

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Posted in: Tokyo, Yokohama declared cities at highest risk of natural disaster by Swiss insurance company See in context

willib: Where would these Swiss pencil pushers prefer to be, if a big one strikes, in a typical building in Istanbul (also overdue for one) or in Tokyo??

Where did you read that Tokyo is less prepared for natural disasters than other places? All I read what the Tokyo and Yokohama are the top two cities at highest risk of natural disaster. No where in this article does it say anything about how well built buildings are, how prepared the residents are or how well trained the emergency personnel are. It's simply about what cities are the most likely to experience serious natural disasters. If you do live in Tokyo or Yokohama, then make sure you have an emergency kit packed and hope that the rest of the citizens are as well-prepared as you think they are. And for heaven's sake, stop being so defensive. I hardly think the article was a slight against Japan in any way so no need for you to come running to her defense over an imagined insult.

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Posted in: Prosecutor for Crimea becomes a hit online in Japan See in context

She's attractive but she doesn't exactly possess a soft voice, like the article says she does. It's pleasant but not soft.

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Posted in: How come Japanese couples don't say "I love you" to each other as often as their Western counterparts? See in context

So, if you say "I love you" often you don't mean it but if you never or rarely say it you mean it more? How about, you mean it if you mean it no matter if you say it every day or once every ten years? I'm talking about saying it to a spouse or partner, not tossing it out randomly at someone you barely know. As Jimizo said, it's nice to hear. As others have said, actions speak louder than words. Both are true and are not mutually exclusive. If it's lost meaning for you and your loved one then there may be something else going on there but it's not up to you to presume the significance of the words to others in their relationships.

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Posted in: How come Japanese couples don't say "I love you" to each other as often as their Western counterparts? See in context

kibousha: Say "I love you" too often, the phrase loses its weight, saying it become an everyday occurrences, nothing special about it.

My husband tells me he loves me all the time and the words have yet to lose their importance to me. Certain things like "have a nice day", "that's a lovely ....", "thank you" and "I love you" when said with sincerity don't have to lose their meaning over time. If you think they do then perhaps you're either saying them without sincerity or having them said to you without sincerity.

Analogous, if everyone has super power, then no one is special.

Not exactly. We're talking about words with actual meanings, not comic books. But having said that, if everyone had a different super power, a' la Heroes, than we'd all certainly still be special according to your definition.

When asked why, he said "didn't you hurt your hands ? I thought I'd do the housework until you're healed". Actions and considerations.

Nice story but why did he have to wait until she hurt her hand to help her out a bit?

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Posted in: Nagasaki man gets back the cash he left at ATM See in context

darknuts: I left 5000 yen at a change machine once. Any other country and that money would have been gone.

I've had my wallet returned to me, money and cards in full, three times in the States. My bike was stolen in Japan when I went into the store for maybe three minutes tops. Now before you go apologizing for bike thievery, this wasn't some rusty old mamachari either, not that that would have made it any better.

I'm glad this guy got his money back but trying to use this story as an opportunity to bash other countries is just plain wrong, in both senses of the word. Stuff like this happens in plenty of places and if you don't believe me check out some of the stories I was very easily able to find, proving my point quite nicely.

It's nice that you have positive feelings about Japan but there are good and bad people here, just like everywhere else.


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Posted in: And they're off See in context

roughneck: Maybe you haven't heard, being popular is not always being right. Else Justin Bieber would be a really good singer and the earth would go around the Kardashians.

Being a fan of neither the Beib nor the Kardashians, I don't disagree with the sentiment. What I disagree with is your trying to make some kind of a point about something that is relatively inconsequential in the scheme of things and probably doesn't cause nearly as much disruption to your life as you're making out. Your sentiment towards people doing something as a way to set fitness goals, to encourage themselves to keep exercising or just for the beauty of a challenge is a bit off too for so many reasons, starting with the idea that it's a good thing for a country's people to want to be fit and if the goal of running a marathon encourages them to do that then that's a good thing and dare I say, more beneficial to the overall social and economic health of the country than whatever it is you're doing driving around for a few hours on a Sunday, one Sunday out of the year.

If I need to keep track of "Tokyo Marathon" before I need to go out driving, it must be as disruptive as snow storm!

I'm not really sure what your point is there but I didn't say you should "keep track of the marathon". My point was simply that you could find alternative routes. As for the marathon being as disruptive as a snow storm, hardly. A snowstorm will put out most of the streets, not the few along the course. The effects of a snowstorm can last for days while the marathon is over by mid-afternoon. A snowstorm doesn't give a month's warning so that whingy drivers can plot alternate routes. The marathon does. Get over it. No one likes a whiner especially one whining about how he can't drive his car one Sunday out of the year because those rotten marathoners are taking over every single street in the city!

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Posted in: And they're off See in context

roughneck: If you want to run, run any day. No need make it a business earning 360 million yen (and more from the sponsors) for 1 day and annoy all the drivers who are forced to go out, knowing that some Low self-esteem person feeling the urge of "proving themselves" will be clogging the road.

That's your opinion and you're certainly entitled to it but the 36,000 runners, the 300,000 plus who applied to run it and the millions who watch it live and on the telly undoubtedly disagree with you and your odd assessment of the runners as "low self-esteem person".

You get your self-satisfaction of being able run, good for you. The organizers get showered by the money of all of you "Being Fit" lovers...good for them.

Yes, how terrible of those people to want to be fit and enjoy a run with other people. That aside, I'd say that the winners get far more than the "self-satisfaction of being able to run". The top runners win up to 17,250,000 yen and make a very descent living trying "to prove themselves".

We, those who need to go out and drive, get nothing more than annoyance.

If you know exactly when the marathon occurs and what the course is, including the blocked routes, which are posted well in advance, when not just plan an alternate route and stop your whinging? It really makes it seem like you don't have any self-esteem and just have something to prove.

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Posted in: And they're off See in context

roughneck: This event every year causes traffic jam.

It causes traffic jams for one day out of the year. Can't you walk, ride a bicycle or take the excellent public transportation that Tokyo has to offer that one day out of the year and not contribute to the traffic jams? Or better yet, just keep your whiny self home that day.

Can't they held it somewhere else? May be somewhere in Saitama or farther where they have wider roads?

But then they'd have to change the name from the Tokyo Marathon to the Saitama or Farther Where They Have Wider Roads Marathon. It just doesn't really roll off the tongue the same way.

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Posted in: Keio University student arrested for instigating girlfriend's suicide See in context

The first paragraph says he sent her countless messages. The second says he began sending (her) 10 malicious through the app Line and that she committed suicide the next day. First. the story is a little vague so it's hard to come to any real conclusions other than that he's a real jerk and she was fairly unstable. Second, while I in no way condone sending such messages to anyone, I would be curious as to where the legal line is drawn when it comes to "instigating the suicide" of another. Is one malicious message enough to get you arrested? Would it have to be more than 5? Would you have to have a proven knowledge that the person who committed suicide was indeed suicidal? What period of time has to have been covered? Is one day after sending such messages enough? Would it have to be a week? It just seems like there would be so many contingencies in a situation like this that it would be extremely difficult to fairly prove a case, one way or the other.

Nice to know that there are always going to be a couple of posters who apparently feel that prison rape is an amusing and acceptable thing and those that are happy to condone others to hell or otherwise advocate violence. Consistency has its comforts, I suppose.

sensei258: Don't drop the soap" or "How's it feel being your cell mates love toy".

elbuda mexicano: May he burn in HELL!!

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Posted in: Japanese women describe things they’d most like to do if they were guys for a day See in context

sillygirl: @ambrosia yes, so have but it sure is more of an **ordeal as a woman.

It certainly isn't as easy as a guy just being able to whip out Mr. Johnson but nor would I call it "an ordeal". Maybe if you're all wrapped up in petticoats and pantaloons but in all my vast experience of peeing outside, I'd say it's just a matter of balance and aim.

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Posted in: Body of elderly woman found covered in snow in Nagano See in context

kaimychal: Those were the good old days! So sad to read this!

Oh, please! It's not as if people don't continue to be kind and helpful to others. All three of my brothers shovel and plow for their elderly neighbors all winter long and living in the snow belt, as they do, they've got their work cut out for them.

As for this woman and her family, any assumptions that they wouldn't help her are just that - assumptions. Elderly people can be very stubborn and she may simply have refused to let them help. They may not live nearby and thus can't get out to help her as often as they'd like. Her kids would very possibly be in their 60's and while that's not old, it's not young either and who knows what their health situation is. She may not even have had kids but just other similarly aged relatives.

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