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CHAMADE comments

Posted in: 'The Wolf of Wall Street' tops 2014 illegal downloads See in context

No doubt the Chinese and Koreans were behind this poracy. They think nothing of illegal copying of American intellectual properties. The Americans should do more about this.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Emperor celebrates 81st birthday See in context

Congratulations to His Imperial Majesty!

Their Majesties' hearts will be heavy wth sorrow upon their visit to Peleliu, where over some 12,000 Japanese were killed by American forces, who also suffered huge losses, when they refused to surrender. Admiral Nimitz is said to have predicted a three day confrontation before landing on Peleliu, but the Japanese stood their ground for several months, hiding in subterranean caves on an island about the size of San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Only two remained alive at the end.

This astouding commitment by nurses, doctors, civilians and the military convinced the American side of the expediency of using atomic warfare to terminate hostilities as quickly as possible. The entire populaion of Japan had been urged to wait beachside for the arival of the American forces, whom they were entreated to combat using hand carved bamboo poles. Surrender was not considered an option.

I am sure Their Majesties shall struggle severely and painfully with this historical reality during their visit, and we must admire them for their courage. The island is now picture postcard perfect, despite surely the anguished ghosts of thousands of the dead,Japanese, American and Palauan.

A footnote: the wild, 5 meter long marine crocodiles in the swamps at Peleliu are descendants of crocodiles brought to Palau by the Japanese for research and for the zoo they built there when Koror was the Nanyo capital; they escaped when the battles released them to nature.

0 ( +7 / -7 )

Posted in: Japan unveils first domestically made passenger jet in four decades See in context

As an American who's lived here fifty years and watched as Japan sieved off valuable foreign technologies for their own closed markets, I must admit I hope this venture falls flat on its face.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Michelin-starred Japanese chef fears loss of simple, traditional food See in context

I personally like much of the local fare, but as President Obama demonstrated, It remains an exotic, esoteric choice for many non Japanese - an acquired taste. And why should murata care what the people here chose to eat? Why does he turn eating into a validation of national attributes?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe says Obama just wanted to talk trade at sushi dinner See in context

Japan shouldn't think sushi has universal appeal, and president Obama's time here was very limited; I'm delighted he went straight to trade. Japan has been getting away with murder for decades at Americas expense.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Norovirus detected at Capital Hotel Tokyu See in context

At least the hotel is being honest about how they presume the contamination occurred and not trying to cover it up or deny responsibility.

But who's going to hold their banquet at the Capitol Tokyu now?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Abe takes Obama to Jiro's in Ginza for sushi dinner See in context

あっぱれ オバマ大統領!Freshly so or not, dead uncooked fish is pretty much dead uncooked fish. Japan may presume it's a universal taste, but clearly it's not. And it seems rather clumsy timing for Abe to have suggested it for a jet-lagged visiting western head of state.

But I most enthusiastically applaud President Obama's taking the topic to the vastly more important subject of trade, an eternal point of contention between quietly but staunchly protectionist Japan and the United States, which has been paying dearly for global Japanese political lip service with unfettered open American markets for decades.

Pity Abe didn't also stop his munching and listen more attentively. The President isn't here for raw fish, and this currently trendy little basement counter is an extremely esoteric attraction at best. (And I understand the American Embassy did NOT ask for this venue - they merely agreed to it when it was proposed by the Japanese side.)

So it backfired as entertainment. But then, George Bush made a bee line to that tacky ersatz-Japanesey Gonpachi in Nishi Azabu when he was here years ago. So perhaps things are getting a little better?

And while we're on the subject, I always wonder just how does Michelin (which the laders of the Japanese culinary industry like to refer to as 味 知らん -- "Mi-shiran", or unable to grasp flavors) get away with telling the world which Japanese food is good and which is not? Despite the token yet allegedly meagerly experienced two locals one hears they drag along to try to validate their legitimacy, the French themselves are not likely to have a clue when it comes to assessing sushi the way Japan would. Yet they have the chutzpah to publish their 'rankings' for Japanese eateries in Japanese for the Japanese market.

As we say here: huhhhnnnnnnnnn!

Anyway, gambatte Mr. Obama.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Obama ate only half the sushi course: media See in context

あっぱれ オバマ大統領!Freshly so or not, dead uncooked fish is pretty much dead uncooked fish. Japan may presume it's a universal taste, but clearly it's not. And it seems rather clumsy timing for Abe to have suggested it for a jet-lagged visiting western head of state.

But I most enthusiastically applaud President Obama's taking the topic to the vastly more important subject of trade, an eternal point of contention between quietly but staunchly protectionist Japan and the United States, which has been paying dearly for global Japanese political lip service with unfettered open American markets for decades.

Pity Abe didn't also stop his munching and listen more attentively. The President isn't here for raw fish, and this currently trendy little basement counter is an extremely esoteric attraction at best. (And I understand the American Embassy did NOT ask for this venue - they merely agreed to it when it was proposed by the Japanese side.)

So it backfired as entertainment. But then, George Bush made a bee line to that tacky ersatz-Japanesey Gonpachi in Nishi Azabu when he was here years ago. So perhaps things are getting a little better?

And while we're on the subject, I always wonder just how does Michelin (which the laders of the Japanese culinary industry like to refer to as 味 知らん -- "Mi-shiran", or unable to grasp flavors) get away with telling the world which Japanese food is good and which is not? Despite the token yet allegedly meagerly experienced two locals one hears they drag along to try to validate their legitimacy, the French themselves are not likely to have a clue when it comes to assessing sushi the way Japan would. Yet they have the chutzpah to publish their 'rankings' for Japanese eateries in Japanese for the Japanese market.

As we say here: huhhhnnnnnnnnn!

Anyway, gambatte Mr. Obama.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Stalemate remains in Japan-U.S. talks on TPP See in context

Since when is beef a sacred subject here? The oily, often smelly wagyu was made for a postwar market that couldn't afford meat regularly so it was made as a special "treat" and was never a staple of the local diet. How typical of protectionist Japan to try to trump this up as a cultural product for special protection! Don't relent, America!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Builders of the new economy See in context

What has Oracle got to do with enhancing the Japanese economy? I don't quite gte it.

I remain in jealous awe, regardless, of Mr. Ellison's spectacular and vast, classical Japanese home near Nanzenji in Kyoto, built by a zaibatsu tycoon in the Meiji Era. It's amazing the characteristically anti-foreigner elite of that self-celebrating city allowed such an investment - or encroachment, as they no doubt consider it. I wonder, at the same time, exactly how deeply he actually grasps Japan and the Japanese mentality. Or is that important?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: French chefs rebel against 'food porn' photos See in context

Tokyo has more world-renonwed 'French' restaurants than all of France, so the potentially irritated chefs here will likely be Japanese or one of those transplanted French implants.

But it's so typically petty and mean spirited of them to worry about such absurd issues as taking a photo of what you ate!

Eat sushi - it's better for you.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Park Hyatt Tokyo appoints new chef de cuisine See in context

The food at the misnamed "New York Grill" (Tokyo looks far vaster and more impressive fhan NYC from way up there) has always been hum-drum and mediocre - people went there more for the views and the inexpensive weekend brunches where they could while away their Sunday mornings. So this young Argentinian will have his hands full. I wonder if we can expect some South American tastes? New York goes to Tokyo to Buenos Aires? That will be... fun.

In any event, they need to do something over there.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Cosmo PR: Getting the right message out See in context

Not much new here.

Wasn't Cosmo doing PR for Nissan back in the tilted trade era?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: MOS Burger’s new premium hamburger packs a sophisticated punch See in context

What does anyone expect from a Japanese company brazenly redeploying original American items for a nationalistic market segment who, after all, really prefers Japanese handling of such business? And have you noticed their menus don't include any English at all? What chutzpah!

That ghastly high school cafeteria-style "tomato" glop they slap on their meat patties ruins the taste for most westerners expecting the familiar flavors of a normal burger. And the wait you endure for even the most modest of meals there seems to confirm MosBurger can't function with the speed and efficicency of a MacDonald's.

And who writes this stuff? "While the ingredients are based on French cuisine, MOS Burger is also bringing a little of Japan’s best to the new burger by mixing top quality Hokkaido-sourced potatoes with rich mozzarella cheese and garlic for the aligot. The result is a light, fluffy topping that will tantalize your taste buds and create a real rustic flavor. If that wasn’t enough, the taste of the demi-glace is complemented perfectly by the inclusion of vegetables coated in a rich butter, with a dash of sherry and Madeira wine to bring out the flavors of the beef patty"

That list of ingredients makes for a very, very un-buger-like burger indeed. But, after all, here in Japan, who really cares anyway as long as the public can be made to eat it? In Japan, it's not the consumers who matter, it's the producers and the suppliers. (Remember how the public was fed the nata de coco and tiramisu booms?)

For some of the city's tastiest hamburgers, try Hamburger Mania in Hiroo.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Posted in: A life in the day of Roti founder-chef Ian Tozer See in context

I used to love the original, old Roti, the one next to Tipness, but the service got blah, the menu dwindled down, and I stopped going there as often as I once did. Now there is another one, where things are offered and done differently and the staff is not especially well trained, in the Midtown shopping mall. I heard that Roti was sold to the Japanese (often meaning a farewell to the gaijin-oriented idiosncasies and menus we love) and had fallen out of foreign hands, whch may account for its current comparative mediocrity - in a city where mediocre can mean death.

And now we read its connected to the Japanese owner of Cinnabon and Seattle's Best? In heaven's name, what for?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: ANA resumes Dreamliner flights See in context

Why is it the media here frequently neglects to mention the faulty batteries in question were made by Yuasa, a Japanese battery specialist manufacturer? One cannot help but wonder if this costly screw up could have been averted had Boeing used an American company.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: China trying to strengthen its claim to Okinawa See in context

Guru 29, thanks for your point of view on this sensitive subject. It will be entertaining to see what Japan, Taiwan, the US, Philippines, Vietnam, Mongolia, Britain, France and others with any historical experience of engaging China will come up with, akin to China's laughable claim on Okinawa, to demonstrate the absurdity of this claim by claiming 'historical rights' to various sections of China. After all, in reality Shanghai was developed not by Chinese, but by clever caucasian Sephardi Jews - who used Chinese labor, not Chinese brains. Hong Kong was nothing until the British built it into a global economic powerhouse with Chinese labor.That sort of thing - you know, England reclaiming Shanghai and Hong Kong and so forth? No?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: China trying to strengthen its claim to Okinawa See in context

The reality is that China by its emerging belligerance is inducing more animosity around the world for it and its people than it has ever beore in its long, shattered history. Americans should reconsider to whom they subcontract production, allowing valuable tehnologies and industrial expertise to be seived off by Chinese hands so easily. China is famously worried that the rest of the world intends to "contain" it - but they are doing an excellent job alienating themselves from the rest of the globe all by themselves. Nonetheless, the West and Japan should continue to unite to restrainthis vulgar, lawless rogue nation and its bellicose attitudes. Despite the fact that for its population and land mass its acomplishments are somewhat modest in comaprison with Jaoan's, China does indeed seem potentially a very, very dangerous and globally destablizing country.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Last 'dojunkai' apartments to be demolished in June See in context

The recently deceased Donald Richie maintained that all of Japan would eventually look like Tokyo. (Gag.) We as foreigners have little sway over the tastes and demands of the average Japanese public, who clearly have minimal interest in their former traditional culture and architectural styles such as the dojunkai buildings (or even worse, the original Frank Lloyd Wright Imperial Hotel) and prefer anything o-new and "convenient." They will in fact surely "convenient" themselves into hell if left alone. The government's support of the shamelessly amoral construction industry and its breathtakingly talentless architects is another factor behind the destruction of so many beautiful old builidngs here. The dojunkai in Harajuku were iconic elements in Omotesando - and Ando Whoosits's new building, while ideal for somewhere such as ugly Kawasaki, where it woul be a beautifying element, does absolutely nothing at all for Omotesando other than perhaps attract mindless fashion victims and idiotic shoppers to its gimmicky courtyard ramps and tediously familar brand name shops. One almost wishes the world had a global architectural preservation body with the power to bring the Japanese constuction inustry to a world tribunal and sentence them to decades in one of their very own repulsive tenements in Takashimadaira (where suicide rates are often the highest in Japan!). This is one of Japan's very sickest characteristics.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: 5 fall sick after drinking bleach-laced water at Mister Donut store in Osaka See in context

Mister Donut should operate their outlets here themselves and not rely on a professional cleaning company (with lots of bleaches sitting around lol) that is Japanese. Too many American companies here lose out on expansion potential here by depending on Japanese 'partners' who merely want the know- how and the name. It's a very old story and the Americans have yet to learn.

-10 ( +2 / -12 )

Posted in: Chinese military officials admit ship radar lock on Japanese detroyer See in context

China must be contained by the world at large. That's all there is to it. Contained by the world that bought its cheap products and shared its technologies. That era is over。

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: ANA says it had Dreamliner power distribution panel trouble 3 times See in context

Mexican parts, faulty Yuasa batteries ---- maybe the Americans should make everything in the US to assure the aircraft is safe.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Chef Wolfgang Puck: 19 years of feeding Oscars' hungry See in context

A sushi bar?

How old.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan identifies some Boeing 787 problems See in context

What does Yuasa have to say about all this?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Top 5 worst places to visit in Japan See in context

Isn't it ironic that two of the capital's most acclaimed international hotels are smack dab in hideous Roppongi (also affectionately referred to as Reppugni)? The Ritz Carlton, where the Japanese who would rather be foreign go to try to actually feel foreign, and the office-building-gone-bizarre Grand Hyatt, Tokyo's glitziest love hotel. Despite Mori-san's ardent aspirations to gentrify Roppongi with his rapidly fading Roppongi Hills and his ho-hum Midtown, the area remains one of Tokyo's very sleaziest - alive with gaijin wannabes and gaijins who don't want to be here but are for the money.

Tokyo isn't really very attractive for tourists who come here to seek the traditional Japan - since there's damned little of the traditional left in Tokyo -- except in the intellects of the natives living there.

But almost all of Japan's cities look just like Tokyo. And the traditional, "classical" Japan so many dreamy-eyed gaijins come here to experience is almost gone, or, as someone pointed out, propped up in front of some hideous signs and garsih, nationalityless buildings or isolated somewhere like Nikko. Kyoto has pockets of breath-taking beauty but it, too, is a for the most part a hideous metropolis when viewed as a city.

Ugliness is something today's Japanese appear to be able to ignore or edit out of view. Visitors, on the other hand, may just not be able to do that.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Boeing wraps up 787 test flights for now See in context

The batteries were made by Japan's Yuasa - what sort of explanations ar they offering??

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: U.S. tries new line of inquiry in Boeing battery probe See in context

Japan's Yuasa made the batteries - what sort of cooperation are they extending?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Boeing conducts 'uneventful' test flight to probe battery fires See in context

The problematic batteries were commissioned to Yuasa - the Japanese battery company. Boeing appears to have trusted Yuasa.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: 90% agree with NHK decision not to invite Sachiko Kobayashi to 'Kohaku' - survey See in context

Ill miss her sublimely ludicrous, three story high skirts.Although I never took her singing seriously . Enka is Japan's country and western....

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: U.S. serviceman apologizes for assaulting boy in Okinawa See in context

Get over it, Japan. There are relatively far more serious crimes committed every single day in Okinawa by Japanese, and few except the most serious crimes ever make the same splash in the media as incidents involving the American military.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

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