Japan Today

borax comments

Posted in: Why do so many native English speakers (mainly Americans) wrongly use "loose" instead of "lose?" See in context

They do? According to who/what?

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Posted in: Smoke haters go after smokers with a vengeance See in context


Say what? The smoking rate in Japan is falling every year and is now around 20%. The OECD average is also 20%.


Those numbers are a bit misleading, though. As the same PDF report states one page earlier, there is a huge gender gap among tabacco users in Japan: 34% of men, and only 9% of women. From my (observational) experience Japanese women are far more likely to smoke at home or away from other non-smokers, due to manners, whereas Japanese men are more likely to light up in restaurants, cafes, on the street, etc. The result being that when you're out and about, it certainly seems like a lot more than just 20% of people are smokers.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Posted in: Smoke haters go after smokers with a vengeance See in context

Timothy Bedwell

Unless you have absolutely no vices, never overeat, always eat 100% healthy food, exercise daily, and don't get sick, you don't have a right to call smokers stupid for enjoying a vice they know isn't healthy.

The one hugely important difference being, eating unhealthy foods or not exercising are not direct, repulsive nuisances to the people around you. Smoking very much is.

15 ( +28 / -13 )

Posted in: Is Japanese TV really as bad as its reputation? See in context

Yes, yes it is. I loved living in this country for a good five years, until I started watching TV regularly.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Posted in: National Guard ordered in as Ferguson businesses torched See in context

Am not condoning/never will condone looting and violence, but...whole lot of people posting comments here who cannot possibly understand the years' and lifetimes' worth of anger and frustration that are causing this nationwide outlash.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Little known deluxe bus services promise long-distance trips in comfort See in context

Even the Shinkansen does this: on the Nozomi train between Tokyo and Hakata Stations, they usually change drivers at Shin-Osaka Station.

They change the entire staff at Shin-Osaka. This is beacause Shin-Osaka is where operation of these trains is divided between JR Central and JR West.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Little known deluxe bus services promise long-distance trips in comfort See in context


The ones I've been on had two drivers from the start, they switched at a rest area partway through the trip.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: What Japan's recession means for the country See in context

Wonder what effect this will have on the value of the yen in the interntional market? Haven't seen any major changes since the news broke yesterday.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Finally, an acceptable breakfast option at 7-Eleven: Eggs Benedict Sandwich See in context

That's considerably more than what an Egg McMuffin costs, which is essentially the same thing minus the hollandaise. If this were Starbucks or another eat-in coffee shop that would be fine, but for prepared-in-advance combini food? That's a bit too steep.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Japan's smartphone 'zombies' wreak havoc on the streets See in context

People staring at their phones while walking are a nuisance, but probably more of a danger to themselves than those around them. People staring at their phones while riding a bike, however...

I see so many of them while I'm biking to work every morning, mostly high school students: headphones in, phone in hand, staring down as they blaze through intersections with one hand on the handlebars. It's so obviously, astoundingly dangerous, I struggle to comprehend how anyone could be so, so stupid. It's a miracle that half of them aren't dead or paralyzed by graduation. Police need to step out of their koban, flag these people down, and give them a ticket.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Posted in: Tokyo Station lists departing train’s destination as…New York See in context

Neat! As a New York-born train geek, I got a real kick out of seeing that sign.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: 27 more dogs found dead in Tochigi See in context

I don't think we're dealing with a random criminal here, but rather a pet store, or perhaps a supplier. Just look at the breeds, those are the three most popular in Japan right now. Whatever the circumstances, this is obviously appalling, and will hopefully bring increased attention on the despicable state of the pet industry in this country.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Posted in: Häagen-Dazs Japan making ice cream classier than ever with wine and Opera flavors See in context

These cake-based varieties are a ripoff. When they replace dense, rich ice cream with light, airy cake layers, you're getting way less bang for your buck. Excellent marketing as always, HD.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Wedding send-off See in context

She gets a gift of 100 million yen for marrying out of the royal family. Our tax money at work!

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Posted in: Step in See in context

I'm usually bothered by most uses of the word foreigner too, but in this case I'd much rather blame society as a whole than this particular karaoke joint. Instead, I'll give them small kudos for making the effort (keeping in mind they're just trying to bring in more business, not spread world peace).

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Posted in: Black burgers See in context

Bamboo charcoal is used frequently in some Japanese sweets. It's natural, flavorless, and turns the product very black indeed. No reason to believe BK is sneaking in artificial colorings.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Posted in: 'Spirit' fades for famed animation studio after Miyazaki signs off See in context

Marnie was one of the best Ghibli films in years. It had heart, beauty, and characters who felt very real. People just didn't give it the chance it deserved...while it may not be at the same level as Miyazaki's legendary works, no movie ever will be.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Posted in: Do you really know how to eat sushi? Probably not See in context

Another day, another "foreign people eat sushi wrong!!!" article. But look around at the Japanese customers in your local sushi joint and tell me how many of them are eating it "wrong" according to this article...from my experience, it's most of them. These are guidelines, not rules. Eat sushi in the way that makes you happiest.

P.S. most wasabi sold INSIDE of Japan, at grocery stores, is actually a mixture of horseradish, mustard, starch, and green food colouring, which is a poor substitute.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Which country has the best high-speed rail technology in the world? See in context

The question has to deal with the best technology. As it stands currently, TGV without any doubt.

Based on what? Taking into account safety and reliability, the shinkansen's technological track record is pretty much impeachable.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Posted in: It's a custom among Japanese corporations to promote someone who knows the company well: people who have been with the company a long time and have transferred to different departments and places. Wom See in context

Correction: women tend to end up being forced to quit, through a desire to raise a family and give more time to their family life, or simply because they are fed up with a business culture where they have to push and fight, and endure criticisms for their pushing and fighting, just to get half the respect their male counterparts get by default.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Which country has the best high-speed rail technology in the world? See in context

There isn't even enough grounds for a debate, it's obviously Japan.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

Posted in: Tokyo restaurant has chilled chicken skewers in collagen blocks See in context

The picture looks like those horrible lollipops with actual bugs inside them that became popular in the States 15 years ago or whatever. I have about as much desire to try this.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Supermoon See in context

Especially in the thumbnail on the front page, the lights on the ferris wheel make it look like creepy evil centipedes coming over a hill or something. Maybe not what the photographer was going for, but I love it.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Man dies after being stung by wasps See in context

Truly horrifying insects. A friend of my wife's was stung once...she went to the hospital and was ok, but the doctors told her that if she was ever stung again, she would likely die.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Voice-activated Laputa pendants sell out after hitting stores See in context

Want it! I've always loved this movie, but it's even more fun, just a tiny bit, watching it on TV here, taking part in the goofy Twitter thing mentioned above, and making a new world record every broadcast.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Why are summer fruits, such as peaches, plums, nectarines, cherries, etc, so expensive in Japan? See in context

Pricing fruit as a luxury item is a crime against public health, it's a shame this has never been brought up as a serious issue in the public forum here. Like Pandabelle said there are local, family-owned shops where you can get less beautiful produce for much cheaper, but not everyone has access to those shops, or is aware they exist at all.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Magazine speculates McDonald's may pull out of Japan if things don't improve See in context

I'll take the other side of this and say nuts to all you people cheering for a pullout. McD's isn't healthy, everyone knows that by now. What it is is a tasty, cheap, and important little slice of home for many of us living here. Same goes for KFC for that matter. If you don't like it, fine. But them pulling out of Japan would be a sad day for me, and many other expats I know. And don't tell me I can just go to Mos instead, they make the worst burgers in the world.

2 ( +11 / -10 )

Posted in: Ex-JSDF commander: Mass murders by disturbed soldier could never happen in Japan See in context

Someone should compile a list of all the things Japanese officials have said would be "impossible" or "unthinkable" in Japan, after they happened in other countries. Then we can cross them off the list one by one, as they happen, eventually, because bad things happen EVERYWHERE, sooner or later. Such hubris.

14 ( +16 / -2 )

Posted in: All for one See in context

Why is Mori still there? For the love of god, why is this man who has embarrassed his country again and again in the international media still president of the committee??

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Travelers pick Japan’s 30 best restaurants See in context


What I'm not sure about is why the picture of raw beef is associated with a story about restaurants.

I assume that's a picture of the food at the number 1 restaurant, M. Being a yakiniku restaurant, the beef would naturally be served to you raw.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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