Japan Today

Howdy Doody comments

Posted in: How foreigners’ daily lives change when they live in Japan See in context

Why so serious? Why not keep it light hearted and simple? Well that would be following Japanese culture. We Americans prefer to speak on tough real issues.

Good point, American values are quite good ... well most of them. When I was back home in the States, I still knew a few people who swore gun ownership was a must and couldn't understand people who didn't pack one. I guess being here too long I take it for granted that I can actually walk the streets at night without getting mugged or beaten up. Some of my friends (including myself) has been a victim of some sort of crime (burglary, car theft, vandalism, breaking into a car, road rage, etc.). Luckily it wasn't the extremely violent type you hear so often (muggings, rape, murder, etc.). I wouldn't dare sleep on the train or bus back home, lest I risk my wallet or bag getting stolen. I go back home, and I really got to get my guard up. That and remember to tip at restaurants, taxis, barbers, hotels, etc.

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Posted in: Nishikori says he is 'still years off peak' See in context

The start of NHK's piece last night was ridiculous. One would have thought it was a close match.

I don't think so. I was watching the NHK news and the announcers were deeply impressed by Murray's strength and precision and kept on showing clips of his 200+ kph serves. They admitted that Nishikori just came up a better skilled player and then congratulated Nishikori on a job well done. They even showed fans of him watching his match. No tears, but a lot of smiles and congrats to Nishikori for making it to the quarters. Nishikori himself had no tears but was satisfied that he could reach it farther than he has ever at a Grand Slam. He knew Murray was tough and acknowledged it.

But Michael Chang won the French Open when he was 17.

Yeah, Chang did do well and has that Grand Slam win in his resume. He was a tremendous player. Yet, I can't for the life of me think of any other Asian man to win a Grand Slam. Heck, I can't even remember the last time since Chang, an Asian man made it even to the semifinals of a Grand Slam. If anyone knows who that man was, please let me know. Even the great Thai tennis player, Paradorn Srichaphan never reached the semifinals of a Grand Slam. Yet, I can see that it will be only a matter of time that another Asian player will win a Grand Slam in tennis ...

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Posted in: Nishikori says he is 'still years off peak' See in context


ubbish. Or how about 'Asians' from other countries?

I totally agree, Smithinjapan: Both Nishikori and Murray should be ashamed of themselves. Saying such rubbish. Let their play speak for themselves.

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Posted in: Broncos stun Steelers, Giants advance in playoffs See in context

TEE - EEE - BOW. WHOA ... OH .. TEE - EEE - BOW. WHOA ... OH ...

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Posted in: U.S. eats: A taste of America in Tokyo See in context

Please! You couldn't pay me to live in Tokyo.

tmarie: I also wouldn't live in Tokyo. Instead, I chose to live in a place away from Tokyo, but close enough that it takes a mere 45 min to get to the center of it. So I can enjoy the peace and quiet of not being in Tokyo, but close enough so that I can go into it for work and an occasional night out enjoying the eateries there.

"Modern Hawaiian Cuisine" perhaps, but far from authentic Hawaiian.

shirokuma2011: While it may not be "authentic" Hawaiian food, it may still be good. Authentic Hawaiian food (e.g. kalua pig and chicken katsu plate lunch with two scoops rice and macaroni salad) is wonderful eating it in the islands, but frankly can be really oily, greasy and heavy on the stomach. Also, the real ahi poke and lomi lomi salmon can be overly salty at times (although it goes great with beer). In addition, "authentic Hawaiian food" includes "saimin" (a poor ramen substitute) and "spam musubi" (very delicious, if the spam is not too salty).

It's kind of like the choice between eating Taco Bell Mexican food and real food from Mexico. Most of my fellow Americans wouldn't touch the authentic stuff from Mexico (because I heard it can sometimes be nasty on your stomach) and rather opt for the Westernized Mexican food from Taco Bell.

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Posted in: Filmmaker Moore demands Georgia boycott after execution See in context

While I sometimes think Moore gets a little radical with his ways, I do respect his convictions. He is simply arguing what many across the world can plainly see: that a grave injustice was done. Troy Davis was in a no-win situation, once he was convicted of his crime; even when it came to light later that he could have been innocent. Of course, we can thank the passing of the "Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996" for that. This act forbids criminals on death row from later presenting evidence which could have been presented at their trial. Thus, this bill essentially gives an accused murderer no chance to prove his innocence.

The appeals court refused to allow Troy Davis a polygraph even though he agreed to have one. They disregarded any recanting of witness testimonies. They brushed aside any evidence or facts which may have been used to prove his innocence (or at least lack of guilt). The main point that bothers me, is that at the time of the investigation, why did the police only consider Troy Davis as the suspect? In fact, they even used another person (who could've been and should've been considered as a possible suspect) as a witness (a Mr. Redd Coles, who was a registered owner of a .38 caliber gun). It's as if they first decided who they wanted to arrest and then tried to collect only the evidence which supported that fact (while disregarding evidence which contradicted it).

Also, from as early as 1996, witnesses started recanting their stories about the crime, yet the court of Appeals disregarded their testimonies as evidence backing Troy Davis' innocence. Dorothy Ferrell, Darrell Collins, Antoine Williams, Larry Young, and Monty Holmes all stated in written affidavits that they were pressured or physically coerced by police to testify against Troy Davis. Of course, the Appeals court refused to consider any of this. They even refused to consider the fact that a weapon was never found. Nor was no physical evidence linking Mr. Davis to the crime and crime scene.

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Posted in: Troy Davis executed in Georgia amid international outcry See in context

The only thing I can conclude is that you wanted Troy Davis dead, despite the fact that there is contradictory evidence, that may have freed him. What did Troy Davis ever do to you? Where does this irrational hatred for the man come from? Any other people you want put to death so that you can feel better about yourself?

I hear you, Taka313. It's terrible that some people tend to believe in a sort of blind justice. To them, justice is served as long as someone is punished to the fullest. Sadly, it often gets to the point when it doesn't even matter anymore if the person punished is the actual person who did it, as long as some semblance of court procedures (no matter how half-ass the manner it was done in), was followed. I mean, 7 out of 9 witnesses recanting their testimonies due to police coercion is something that shouldn't be ignored, yet some people continue to disregard that. Also the fact that one witness, Michael Cooper who was shot in the face, even confessed that he was inebriated at the time and couldn't quite be sure if it was Davis who actually shot him. And where is the murder weapon? The prosecution never proved that Troy Davis ever had a gun in his possession too.

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Posted in: Troy Davis executed in Georgia amid international outcry See in context

The death penalty is outdated and barbaric. Of course, people will say think about the family of Mark MacPhail, who have lost someone to murder. Yet, can they really be at peace knowing that the wrong man may have been killed, especially when more than of a reasonable doubt exists (as in Troy Davis' case)? Of course, I can understand that just the fact that someone was punished (no matter if it was the right person or not) would give some people peace of mind. However, I for one would like to get it perfectly right; especially when it involves a person's life. An eye for an eye may work, as long as it is the correct eye.

As other posters have written, once you put that life out, you can't get it back if you found out later that you made a mistake. And we all know that grievous mistakes like these have been made in the past. Just imagine if it was a brother, father, mother, good friend, etc. of yours who was wrongly accused of a crime. Would you so easily go against the accused (your brother, mother, father, etc.), without thoroughly observing what evidence (or lack of it) there was?

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Posted in: Atami: Sun, sand, sea, sex and gardens in a day See in context

Atagawa or Shimoda is much better than Atami. Atagawa has better onsens and places to stay. I also love the outdoor footbaths and seafood in Atagawa. Shimoda also has more scenic spots to enjoy than Atami.

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Posted in: Axe man kills two children, four adults near China kindergarten See in context

Terrible terrible news. RIP young ones.

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Posted in: Nine North Koreans to get temporary refuge in Japan See in context

While Japan has always been one of the most generous donors of foreign aid to refugees in other countries, it has been criticized in the past for not allowing in many refugees to stay within its own countries. Fortunately, the last few years have seen Japan turn the corner and allow more refugees in. Hopefully, other Asian nations follow suit. I think somewhere down the line more funding for the housing of refugees and feeding them would help. I wouldn't mind so much to see some of my taxes go toward funding this, and I'm sure other people wouldn't mind too.

I agree. I would be glad to see some of our taxes be used to fund and provide assistance to more refugees in the future. After all, it would be going to a good cause. In fact, it would be beneficial to increase income taxes to help encourage and increase more refugees to enter Japan.

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Posted in: France piles on 22 points in last 10 minutes to beat Japan 47-21 in World Cup See in context

The brave blossoms really gave France a scare there for a moment. Good effort by Japan. However, in the end, France showed why they are the #4 ranked team in the world. Great effort by both teams.

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Posted in: 10 happy years See in context

Actually Disney Land/Sea are built on a very dangerous place near the sea.

LoveNot: Actually, anything you do with your kids has potential dangers. I agree with other posters who feel balance in a kid's life is the most important rule you can follow. While kids need to be stimulated intellectually, they also need to have plain old fun.

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Posted in: Shimada's retirement much ado about nothing See in context

Still, what I said was true.

As what I also said was true too. Illogical forgiving of celebrities happens everywhere. Not only in Japan. There are enough people who idolize and love the "bad chicks" or "bad dudes" who are mean, arrogant, and even criminal. Even Paris Hilton and Britney Spears have their fans. To this day, people in America still idolize Micheal Jackson, even though he had several settlements due to child molestation cases. There are even people who still support and idolize OJ Simpson. As for Shimada, in my university classes, whenever the question in one of the lessons comes up, "Describe a famous person you hate", the number one person my students mention is Shimada (followed closely by Sachiko Nomura and Erika Sawajiri). In fact, he has been the number one hated personality among my university students for the past three years. I guess young Japanese people don't like these kinds of celebrities.

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Posted in: Shimada's retirement much ado about nothing See in context

It's pretty sick how many Japanese say they regret Shimada 'retired'

As many Japanese who have supported Shimada (like Ogura), I've seen and heard much more simply lambaste him. I've met and talked with many more Japanese people who simply despise Shimada and think he is simply a lowlife comedian; who can't even hold a candle to other such as Sanma-san and Beat Takeshi.

Because celebrities in this nation get away with murder, more or less, and because the Japanese public often makes heroes of celebrities who bow down,

Good point. Why does celebrities in every country in the world, including Japan get away with murder. Spoiled brats like that somehow feel entitled to do anything they want, as long as they are famous and have money. Even with this news, Shimada still has his share of fans, just like OJ Simpson has his, who continue to feel he is an innocent man.

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Posted in: Nadeshiko Japan beats Thailand in Olympic qualifier See in context

The Nadeshiko did quite well considering they were clearly without their best team. In the end, Japan and North Korea should be the favorites to book tickets to London, with maybe only Australia having a chance to upset those two teams.

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Posted in: Painful finish See in context

Actually, looking skinny does not necessarily mean a person would collapse. I've seen or heard of many seemingly normal weight looking people collapse from stressful exercise or activities because they lack the proper cardiovascular training and experience. It all boils down to how fit you are. Cardiovascular fitness has more to do with proper training, than how much weight you have on you. Even re-hydrating techniques play a bigger part in how well you can endure a full marathon, than the weight you have on you. Does anyone remember the Japanese woman Noguchi? She was super tiny and extremely skinny (maybe even skinnier than Kinukawa), but she was able to run good races and win silver in the 2003 World Championships and gold in Athens 2004. It was all due to proper training.

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Posted in: Belgian soccer match halted after Fukushima taunts See in context

No, he didn't leave in tears DURING THE MATCH, he left in tears AFTER THE MATCH.

Excellent point, freakshow. Although Mr. Kawashima may have cried after the match was complete, he persevered through the taunting during the match and didn't let it affect him by helping his team earn a draw. That was quite professional of him to do so. Of course, once the game was finished and the outcome clear, shedding tears off the pitch should be no problem.

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Posted in: Belgian soccer match halted after Fukushima taunts See in context

I still can't believe how some posters here can be so insensitive. Racial taunts against you is one thing. In fact, I could handle that. I'm sure Mr. Kawashima could as well. However, these taunts were disrespectful to others who have perished tragically and those still suffering from the aftereffects. I also could handle people calling me names, but when they start directing it at others who I care deeply about, then it hits me hard. I'm sure Mr. Kawashima played as hard as he could through those taunts, but maybe at one point, an image of dead bodies and damaged homes suddenly flashed in his head, and then the emotion could not be contained.

So he complained over 2 objects being thrown on the field near him.

Spidapig24: Are you saying that it is normal and should be acceptable for fans to throw things on the field during a soccer match? I totally disagree with you. Whether it be a plastic bottle, a glass one, or whatever, it shouldn't be allowed. Players are not paid to dodge things that fans throw at them. No matter what you say, it isn't part of the game.

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Posted in: Belgian soccer match halted after Fukushima taunts See in context

True sportsmen do NOT taunt.

That's so true. I can see a little taunting about your style of play, your looks, and such. Even a whole crowd booing can be handled. However, when taunts by a mass of people in unison is taunting something as sensitive as the death of thousands of people whom you may have some connection with, then I can understand how it can touch a nerve.

Taunting is one thing, but projectiles like bottles being thrown your way can be dangerous. How could you continue to play when you could get hit with a bunch of glass on your head.

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Posted in: Belgian soccer match halted after Fukushima taunts See in context

That is so classless. I can see having a thick skin about being booed for being a poor soccer player, or your looks, or body shape. Those things you can take. However, being taunted about something as sensitive as the death of thousands of people is absolutely uncalled for.

I can truly understand how a constant taunting of such a tragic event could suddenly bring back grim and grisly images of what happened, which could then fill you with emotions that won't end; especially when that event was something in which you had a strong connection with, or experienced part of it first-hand.

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Posted in: Koshien: The most emotional sports tournament in the world See in context

I have a Japanese friend who took part in Koshien a long time ago. He said that just being in that stadium, with all that history, gave him chills. He said that you can't really understand the emotions it brings until you are actually there. Of course, even though his team lost, they could at least take a little Koshien dirt as a souvenir, and have many pictures taken, as a remembrance of being there. I'm not sure it's the most emotional sports tournament, but it does seem to bring a lot of people together.

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Posted in: Australian girl, 4, killed by pitbull-mastiff See in context

It is not the breed, but the owner.

While I agree that the owner is mostly at fault here, I also have to say that there are some breeds of dog which need to be more tightly regulated than others. I feel that the pit bull qualifies as such as dog. After all, tigers and lions are breeds of cats, but you wouldn't treat them as the same as a Persian, or an American Shorthair, would you?

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Posted in: Defense chief questions why China needs aircraft carrier See in context

feel free to show me how well democracy's working in the US and in Japan, among other places.

And you can add just about any other democracy in the world to that list: Canada, the U.K., Australia, etc.

I agree that if other nations can have weapons, so should China and Japan as well.

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Posted in: Defense chief questions why China needs aircraft carrier See in context

The LDP has led Japan to be weak, not strong, and there's nothing Japan could do against China if the government changed.

Well, it all goes back to the dropping of the A-bomb. The Japanese have become a peaceful race as a result and don't have the courage, and won't develop any means of military might. Its aggression has long since been vanquished.

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Posted in: 8 shot to death in Ohio, including child See in context

How many does that make this month so far, by the way? Probably more than most nations see in a year in terms of gun-related deaths.

Totally true. And let's not forget that the number of gun-related deaths in the U.S. each month will rise when you factor in the many individual homicides. After all, international sites only report sensational shootings involving many people (e.g. 7 victims in this case; 8 if you include the shooter himself). You'll only find the "minor" shooting deaths in local U.S. newspapers and news. For example, the LA Daily News reported a car-to-car shooting death in Panorama City, and a murder-suicide shooting of an elderly couple in Valencia, just on weekend alone, and just in Los Angeles.

http://www.dailynews.com/crime/ci_18630372 http://www.dailynews.com/crime/ci_18630360

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Posted in: 3 Japanese lawmakers give up and return home from Seoul See in context

Don't know which is more pathetic: two countries (Japan and South Korea) mindlessly bickering about nothing, or so many posters needlessly posting back and forth about something as trivial as this.

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Posted in: 7 injured as M6.4 quake shakes Fukushima See in context

I definitely felt that one. Glad I had my phone set to receive earthquake warnings. Gave me about an extra 10 seconds to get up and ready. Felt pretty big.

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Posted in: Cyclists confront increasingly bumpy situation See in context

Japanese police stopping riders in the heavy rain for using an umbrella?? Never going to happen!

True, because then you'll hear people complaining, "Don't those police have anything better to do than to stop people on the street on a bicycle, asking to see their 'gaijin card'/

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Posted in: Gunman kills 5, then himself at Texas roller rink during party See in context

People that legally carry guns in public, carry guns for the same reason the cops do. For protection.

And as an easy way to commit suicide. Many times this involves taking the lives of others with you before turning the gun on yourself.

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