Jonathan Harston comments

Posted in: Survey asks Japanese women if they could date a man who earns less money than they do See in context

But I've got enough to live on, I don't want to be slogging my life away desperately trying to get more money, I want to live my life doing what I want to do.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese airlines say they will obey China's air zone rules See in context

I thought Air Traffic Control zones were based on distance to control tower, not surface-level territoriality. London South East's ATCZ extends over part of the French coast.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Top court says 2012 election unconstitutional, but not invalid See in context

Hold on, are you saying that some constituencies have (widely) differing numbers of electors than others? How can that make for any sort of valid electoral system? A representative democracy is founded on each elected representative representing as close to the same number of electors as possible. Doesn't Japan have regular boundary reviews to ensure all electoral districts are as close to each other as possible? I've been involved in three in the UK and am just in the starting stages of a fourth.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: No, austerity did not work See in context

Full employment is no good if that employment doesn't pay enough to stay alive.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Bus, rail companies to hike ticket prices in units of Y1 for card users See in context

So, penalized for paying cash. Should be the other way 'round.

I get a discount if I pay electronically for my electricity, my gas, my water, my insurance... Cash handling is expensive, why shouldn't cash payers be charged for the expense of handling cash?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Feel better fast: Eight home remedies from the little old ladies of Japan See in context

When I get that ticklish feeling that I know is the start of a cold I eat as many oranges as I can force down. It doesn't cure the cold, but it stamps down on the symptoms.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Lack of worker skills threatens European recovery See in context

It's more than skills, it's the refusal of employers to actually employ people, and creating their own skills shortages. I went to university in the 1980s, I'm a software engineer/programmer, I've spent the last three years hopping from between short term contracts that takes hundreds of applications to get because employers are only prepared to employ somebody who is already working on something exactly 100% identical to the vacancy they advertise.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 1 in 3 Japanese women want to be housewives: poll See in context

However, there IS no choice in this country. The entire system is stacked against females who attempt a career.

And stacked against people (male or female) who don't want to slog their guts out working in order to be able to afford to stay alive.

A few days ago I was watching a documentary about the 19th century Pacific north-west Indian tribes. "They only needed to spend a few hours each week tending their crops or catching food". Yes, until westerners came along and thought "slackers! must make them spend 16 hours a day slaving away in order to eat".

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 1 in 3 Japanese women want to be housewives: poll See in context

Good on them. I don't want to go out to work either, I want to stay at home and get on with what I want to do, and sponge off my wife.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: YouTube revamps much-criticized comments feed See in context

Comments, what comments?

Scroll scroll scroll

Oh, those comments! I've never noticed comments on YouTube, I go there for the videos not the comments, which are hidden off the bottom of the screen.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 10 simple ways to ruin a Japanese wife’s day See in context

Not putting the toilet seat down

This always puzzles me. Do women walk backwards into the toilet with their eyes closed and just plonk themselves down? They are simply complaining that other people won't let them be slothenly lazy.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: The top 10 words to describe Japanese people (according to foreigners) See in context

err... I sweep and weed the pavement in front of my house in the UK. It's just common sense. I don't see why I should live behind a pile of rubbish. Surely doubly so for shops. I can't understand how shop keepers are happy to have their customers scared away by weeds growing up the front of their building.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Aso compares Senkakus dispute to Falklands See in context

Does the population of the Senkakus wish to remain Japanese?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Posted in: What price for power at the flick of a switch? See in context

Britain has also proposed launching two more balancing services, the Demand Side Balancing Reserve and the Supplemental Balancing Reserve, to help keep the country warm and lit during the winters

It's madness using electricity for heating, heating should be done with consumer-side gas heating. The madness of using electricity for heating is compounded by the titanic madness of using gas for electricity generation. That means converting gas into heat, into motion, into electricity, sending it down long electricity lines, and then converting it back into heat again. Madness! Gas should be send directly to the consumer where it is used via only one conversion point.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: 3 most unattractive women’s hairstyles (according to Japanese men) See in context

Hair over the eyes. I keep wanting to reach out and brush it away, and find myself empathetically trying to flick the hair out of my own eyes!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Russia, Japan begins talks on territorial dispute See in context

Habomai and Shikotan make no "sense" as part of the Kurils, they are a natural extension of the Nemuro penisula and have no "natural" connection to the Kuril chain. They are also the smallest islands, and don't protect a cross-Kuril transit route. Transit across the Kurils would be through the wide channel between Iturup and Urup. A sensible compromise would be to return Habonmai and Shikotan to Japan and then discuss what to do with Itarup and Kunishir later (see http://mdfs.net/maps/Japan/Kuril.gif)

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Posted in: Aging hikikomori children's lifelong dependency on parents See in context

As soon as I left my parents' home they moved to a smaller house - there was no place to return to.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: If I were a young Japanese and I could speak English, I would probably choose to emigrate. See in context

My home town in England used to be thronged with Japanese students. Now, they have declined to invisibility, and more than replaced with Chinese students. (2001 approx 1000 jp, 1000 cn; 2011 approx 500 jp, 8000 cn)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Aso's gaffe exposes Japanese ignorance of Jews See in context

"Japanese beyond high school have no opportunity to study the topic"

In many western schools there is a similar lack of distinction between Japanese and Chinese history, I remember a plot line in a soap opera a few years ago where a Chinese character was constantly harassed for being (a descendant of) the aggressors in WW2.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: New immigration laws hinder some married expats returning to UK See in context

And what happens if you're happily settled in the UK, but get divorced? Does the non-UK ex-partner get thrown out of the country?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Lifelong sex? Men say yes; women not so sure See in context

How does this match up with the article a few weeks ago saying Japanese women were wanting sex and frustrated at their menfolk for not providing? Quotes along the lines of: he's barely even touched me since our honeymoon.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: When death comes in installments See in context

"Not so much at Death's door, but well inside the hallway, admiring the carpets and commenting on the hatstand".

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese-style toilets can be challenge for visitors See in context

There's nothing to hold onto! You need the knees of a weight-lifter to hold your body in that position.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Posted in: Parents actively seeking mates for their single offspring See in context

I know somebody who's about 48 and single and still at his parents' home, but that's because as the youngest he ended up looking after his elderly mother until she died, and living in a rural area he didn't have much chance to meet up with anybody - and this is in the UK, so it's not a particularly Japanese phenomenon. He's tried the usual distance dating methods, but there isn't much around for late-40's life-time singletons.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese language study becoming popular in China, Indonesia See in context

The new wave is Korean

Whenever I hear Korean it has such similar sounds and rythms to Japanese that I subconciously start to try listening in Japanese and get completely confused. Not like Mandarin which sounds like you've got your teeth wired together, or Cantonese which sounds like people arguing.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Posted in: Why you shouldn’t learn Japanese See in context

Bizzarely, the place I most used my Japanese was Hong Kong. I couldn't speak Chinese, they couldn't speak English, but we could both speak Japanese ;)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 20 words of English origin that Japanese people often mistake for real thing See in context

There's no such thing as a plug socket. There's a plug, which you plug into a socket, and there's a socket, that you plug a plug into.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: China, Japan scholars seek way out in islands dispute See in context

China wants everything up to the Okinawa Trench - if that had been done in the North Sea, Britain's sector would have extended to the Norwegian shoreline. China doesn't want to lose access to the oil and gas fields - well, the median line appears to traverse the fields near enough exactly down the middle. A sensible start would be: put a 200 mile circle around "the islands" and put them to one side for the moment. Draw and agree a median line through the rest of the East China Sea based on assuming "the islands" don't exist. Now, start licensing exploration. Brownie points to the country that suggests this first.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: U.N. to consider validity of China's claim over disputed islands See in context

Japan has missed a trick here. They should have said: hurray! yes, go ahead, here's all our documentary evidence, when it's done pass the findings directly to the International Court of Justice, as we've been trying to get China to agree to for 40 years.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Learning language through nonsense – Japanese author of 'unusable English' speaks See in context

We need to take a helicopter overview and do some blue cheese thinking while we bang our think-woks together and gather together some idea stew.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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