philly1 comments

Posted in: Man whose wife, 3-year-old daughter were killed by speeding car, puts focus on issue of elderly driving See in context

My heart goes out to the grieving husband and father. His concern is valid and attention should be given to the problem of drivers who should no longer be on the road.

There needs to be a mandatory government test & refresh driver skills program (not only in Japan) which is carried out at regular intervals after a person gets a license. As a driver ages, the intervals between the tests should become progressively shorter.

It's not fair to put the onus for removing a license on doctors or family members or rely on drivers' "feelings." The independence inherent in a driver's license is something to be earned and maintained by the individual in possession of a license. That basic premise and responsibility ought to be understood and respected by all drivers from the outset.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: U.S. to sanction 5 nations, including Japan, if they import Iranian oil See in context

Trump is leading the world to conflict and he doesnt give a damn about the consequences!

Unscrupulous rich people often make a great deal of money during periods of global conflict...

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Posted in: This cheesy, golden, puffed casserole is all about the eggs See in context

You can't put "hearty" and "white bread" in the same sentence. Hearty whole grain bread, yes.

Quite the contrary. You most certainly can put "hearty" and "white bread" in the same sentence. What you need is a dense, European-style bread rather than the fluff-style loaves popular in Japan. If you use the latter in this recipe you will end up with egg and cheese mush.

This recipe is similar to another called "Christmas Morning Wife Saver" (look for it with Google) which adds bits of bacon to the mix. All sorts of other minced ingredients--crumbled dry sausage, smoked salmon, crab, whatever--can be added for creative variations on this theme.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Woman, 3-year-old daughter killed, 8 others injured after car, garbage truck collide in Tokyo See in context

Ageism abounds in many comments above. Unlike racist comments, ageist comments invoke little critical thought or the outrage they deserve. Instead people tend to nod in agreement. Doesn't make it right.

Society still operates on a mindset from back in the day when many people didn't live much beyond 70, and 65 was considered very old. That was exacerbated by the (logically flawed) notion that "you can't trust anyone over 30" perpetuated by the very people some now want to banish from the road.

As the population has aged, the agencies responsible have not stepped up with programs for retesting and re-licensing drivers. The fact is only some people not all decline to the point where they should not be driving as they age. However, there's no overall system in place for determining who those people are.

Others--and I have first-hand knowledge of several--are competently operating a vehicle and enjoying that independence into their late 80s and even early 90s. It's entirely individual. I also know of instances where drivers in their 40s have had heart attacks while behind a wheel causing grave injury as well as damage. So are we to kick them off the streets as well?

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Posted in: Trump, first lady to visit Japan as state guests May 26-28 See in context

...intended to showcase the closeness of the two countries' ties...

Puppeteer & puppet. Who holds the strings?

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: British rock band Queen to bring 2020 Rhapsody Tour to Japan See in context

No need to top up the pension, his [May's] personal wealth is £130 million.

From everything I have heard him say when interviewed, it's clear that he's doing it for the joy, the rush, the love of it. Brilliant that he can and because he's beyond good at it. Kudos to him for not quitting. More people who are nearing his age (70 now, if I remember correctly) might be inspired to push past the cultural pressure to quit and be content to sit for the rest of their lives and do likewise.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: New York Chinese eatery heats up cultural appropriation debate See in context

This happens all the time. Recently a Canadian book was published on the phenomenon/adaptation of "Chinese" food in restaurants across Canada. http://www.douglas-mcintyre.com/book/chop-suey-nation

If we're going after the "perps" does anyone want to take on the number of so-called sushi restaurants abroad owned by Koreans?

It's part of history and the evolution of food culture. Italians would not have spaghetti otherwise. Just sayin'...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Workplace yoga can indeed lower employee stress See in context

Even giving any staff time to go to the washroom or make a cup of tea without side-eye from coworkers and censure from managers also reduces stress. It's a known fact that breaks of various kinds boost productivity and creativity. Yoga, mindfulness practices and meditation suited to the work environment also help individuals to calm and console themselves during and after periods of great stress.

If businesses were as careless with their company vehicles and machinery as some are with their personnel, they'd soon realize how counter-productive such practices are.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: JR East replace title of 'train conductor' with just 'crew' See in context

Since the "conductor" job title requires extensive training and carries a level of responsibility as well as prestige, it's understandable that the change would be disturbing to personnel.

Though we assume (likely correctly) that the food trolley lady won't be taking the controls, it's hard to comment further on the proposal or predict its impact on commuter safety without knowing how JR East plans to deploy its "crew" members in the future.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Group investigated for placing bed in center of Shibuya scramble crossing See in context

Hilarious! Harmless! Crazy! Creative! Fun!

"Bedlam in Shibuya" indeed, serendipitous 1. Thanks for that.

My question: How can the police arrest them while keeping a straight face? Hssss. Very, very difficult, ne?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Netflix sends some movies to theaters but has insisted on making them available on Netflix at the same time, or just a few weeks later. That has upset big movie chains, which refuse to show Netflix films and want a longer "window" of time to play films exclusively. What's your view on this? See in context

How people consume entertainment continues to change as technology offers more options for the viewing experience. The people who want the big screen, big sound, opening weekend, festival and social experience of films are usually not in the same group which doesn't like crowds, driving, finding parking or hates going out at night.

Why not please different audiences simultaneously? Why inconvenience one audience by making people wait several weeks?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: New imperial couple to face heavy burden of tradition See in context

WHAT is with the pegboard background?!? We see this in every pic! 

Anyone wanna bet that it isn't pegboard? That each of those dots is an individually crafted motif created by some artist with a National Treasure designation and is priceless? Wouldn't surprise me if it were....

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Posted in: Security cameras installed on street lights along Tokyo’s Omotesando-dori due to spike in pick-pocketing See in context

There are warnings in washrooms of pickpockets in the area in Shibuya, too. Statistically Japan has been a "safe" place for so long that trust coupled with careless complacency about safety is part of the culture.

Thus actions that would be foolhardy anywhere else (wallets in back pockets or in open totes--an easy grab & go for thieves) are commonplace in Tokyo. It's unlikely that locals or visitors would behave that way in New York, London or Rome.

When I first traveled/stayed in Japan in 1998 there were fewer than 5 million tourists annually. Now the total approaches 30 million. More people=more crime. Perhaps not statistically, but in higher numbers, certainly.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: Gov't says official translation for next era name Reiwa is 'beautiful harmony' See in context

Everyone seems to have forgotten that "wa" is frequently used to describe Japan and its people. The common words using the character are "和食、和牛 和服 和洋" all meaning "Japanese" not "peace."

And as it's been pointed out "rei" today is often for words like orders, instructions, arrest, command, etc. so the obvious intrepretation of 令和 would be something like "commanded Japanese" or "ordered japanese." I find it hard to believe the govt didnt have that in mind.

I find this very interesting exposition, Jeff Lee. I would not be the least bit surprised by a secret code for the Japanese and a great deal of obfuscation for the rest of the world.

Ironically, commanded and ordered Japanese are very likely deeply comforted Japanese.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Posted in: New recruits mark 1st day at work across Japan as fiscal 2019 begins See in context

"You can become anything you want to be if you put your mind and effort into it," Toyota President Akio Toyoda told them. "Be a treasure of the company and if possible you should be someone who will be valued by society."

Subtext: Conform no matter what.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: Gov’t proposes measures to make it easier for foreign visitors to get mobile phones See in context

So this can't be easily done in Japan?

What can be done easily in Japan?

There seem to be many assumptions about what 'tourists' need. Just because one is in Japan for less than 90 days doesn't mean that one only needs data. Needs are individual, a simple fact often lost in Japan.

I was recently in Tokyo for studies on a tourist visa for separate periods of two and three months. While I used email, Skype and texting more than the telephone, I needed a Japanese phone number to be able to register (as required) at the police box and in several other instances.

I also needed to make international calls to certain people and businesses (medical insurance for one) which I could not access any other way. Leaving the apartment to find a pay phone for such services or using the pricey hotel/apartment rate was not an option.

It's also much more convenient to carry a phone to do everything while away from one's residence. Lugging a laptop or tablet around is a nuisance.

Since flip-phone days in the early naughts, I have tried numerous purveyors, rental services or SIM card swaps, and the phone service was always problematic for all of them. This is compounded if (as I do) you have an android phone not an iPhone. It is much more convenient to have use of my data base of contacts and information on my personal phone than it is to deal with the Japanese system.

In addition, it takes hours of research to consider the various options available to visitors in Japan. Determining the hidden costs and apples to oranges plans takes forever--especially if you are low-to mid level tech savvy. People travelling to other countries do not have these hindrances. They plop in a prepaid SIM. When it runs out they get another. Easy!

What is easy in Japan? Achieving high levels of frustration due to absolutely unnecessary aggravation.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Which hairstyle makes a woman look good at her job?' asks Japanese survey See in context

Looking at the selection, you have to wonder what kind of job. Husband/sugar daddy hunting?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japan slowly buying into cashless future despite widespread misgivings See in context

...the Japanese government hopes consumers will eventually embrace the future, or even the present...

Thanks for the belly laugh, JT! A great way to start the day.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Does #nomakeup trend help women or is it bare-faced cheek? See in context

The truth is that women independently choose whether or not to wear makeup. 

Not quite true. Systemic manipulation of women plays a huge role in their choices. In spite of Big Yen's ironic point regarding Naomi Wolf wearing make up, The Beauty Myth is a spot on (and timeless) commentary on the subject.

Billion dollar industries contrive to make women feel inadequate without cosmetics, perfumes, handbags, clothing and what not while raking in the money they spend to enhance their appearance. Men are under somewhat less pressure in that regard.

It takes a great deal of inner aplomb to find a balance between what is seen in the media as societies ideals and what one presents to the world with confidence and elan.

Like exquisite clothing to enhance the body, maquillage can enhance the face people show to the world. Nothing wrong with that. Nothing wrong with an industry meeting those needs. However, it's important for every individual to recognize what is the influence of the advertising industry in setting beauty standards. It's not being done for a woman's benefit, but the corporate profits. With that understanding, individual choice is possible.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Consumers turn to nostalgia goods, events in final weeks of Heisei era See in context

Nostalgia isn't logical. It's a chimera of the mind.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Don’t like trigonometry? Then you’re just like Hitler, Japanese high school English teacher tells student See in context

While somewhat harsh (though completely normal and even mild compared to some verbal humiliation entrenched in Japanese pedagogy) the teacher's point that someone not open to other disciplines and fields of study might not make the best teacher is spot on.

The fact that the 62 year-old (which invites offensive ageist attackers) invoked the name Hitler in his analogy for the student is a flash point in the story, but the offence is deeper.

A brilliant teacher sees the value of learning whatever the subject and encourages all students to open their minds to and have respect for subjects in which the cannot excel personally. That said, a brilliant teacher might have made his point in a manner that brought the struggling student onside with a more inviting argument for taking on and giving his best effort to a subject in which he struggles.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: IHG tries new lighting technology to help guests sleep better See in context

Too bad that difference wasn't taken into consideration when LED lighting was first designed and marketed as an improvement over incandescent or fluorescent lighting.

LED lighting is especially annoying and detrimental to one's health after the sun goes down. Also, adding a dot of it as on/off indicators to switch plates, small appliances and screens lights up a room so that it is impossible to sleep without an eye mask. Even so, the pituitary gland registers that light through the skull which results in poor quality sleep after working (to death) all day.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Shoplifters' wins another award See in context

Bravo! It is a wonderful film.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Skateboard whizz-kid Brown chooses Britain in Olympic blow to Japan See in context

Despite her outrageous talent, the teeny boarder, who stands just 1.34 meters has faced resistance from some event organizers reluctant to allow her to compete and risk embarrassing established skaters.

This sentence caught my attention. In addition to the deeply-rooted prejudice against hafu and the cultural bent for taking the joy out while ramping up the stress of high level pursuits, the hierarchical system must be upheld. God forbid that some pre-pubescent interloper upset all that harmonious order.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Teenager ashamed of given name 'Prince' adopts traditional one See in context

 ...so what is the rational for making it so difficult in Japan?

If anything were easy in Japan, how could anyone avoid anything slightly uncomfortable with a tilt of the head and hiss between the teeth? Keeping everything (even the mundane) difficult is the cultural "get out of jail free" card. That and shoganai.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Posted in: Cabinet OKs bills to ban harassment, promote women's advancement See in context

Correction: still do and will continue to...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Cabinet OKs bills to ban harassment, promote women's advancement See in context

1...harassment by those taking advantage of their more senior position at the workplace is specified as a prohibited act. But the legislation does not set punitive measures to be taken against violators.

2...many companies said it is difficult to distinguish between harassment and coaching by bosses.

More legislation without teeth. With no punitive measures there is no enforcement possible. Like farting on a train, everyone knows it's inappropriate but people still do will continue to do it.

This reads like the punchline of a dark joke. The legacy of a hierarchical shaming culture which refuses to move forward to more egalitarian ideals.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Nuclear evacuees to face tougher housing situations from April See in context

Yes, just look at the photos. What luxury. Who wouldn't want to live there, even if they had the wherewithall to have their own home?

The utter lack of even basic human empathy from some posters on here never ceases to appal. Let's hope they never have to be old, poor, sick and forced from their homes by earthquakes and nuclear disasters.

I read that as sarcasm, Alfie.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Posted in: As medical costs mount, Japan to weigh cost-effectiveness in setting drug prices See in context

If people are going to be denied expensive treatments for any reason, but especially age, then give them the option of an unimpeded and painless death at the time of their own choosing. Why should governments make patients and their families suffer such indignities?

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Posted in: Gov't panel finalizes draft to cut plastic waste by 25% by 2030 See in context

it stopped short of setting a reference year or presenting specific measures

Welcome to Japan Inc.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

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