sirgamble comments

Posted in: Things that foreigners find annoying about life in Japan See in context

Work's the only thing for me:

Lack of career jobs. Low incomes. Poor work conditions.

This is why I moved back to Australia. I love the noise + energy in general around Japan! Never had any issues with people, culture or lifestyle.

Put it this way... in Japan I made $4000 a month. WHAT A JOKE!! No chance of any real promotion, no career and no savings for my retirement. I'd work 14 hours a day. I also didn't get more than 2 consecutive weeks of holidays in more than 6 years. I was burned out after that...

In Australia I make 3 times that amount, have 2 months worth of holidays a year (AT LEAST!!!), get 15.4% EXTRA put into a retirement fund and work 9-5. I have promotion prospects all the time and look... quite frankly a career, not just a job.

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Posted in: If a longtime expat starts offering you advice, walk the other way See in context

Tips have ranged from “Don’t drink tap water; the Japanese all drink bottled” to “You won’t be allowed into an onsen with a tattoo.”

Both are correct... in small towns they use bore, so you can't drink it. 99.99% of onsens will turn you away if you have a tattoo and can't cover it up or something.

Looks like somebody just has a chip on his shoulder...

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Posted in: Anti-whaling activist Pete Bethune gets suspended prison term See in context

He pleaded guilty to obstructing commercial activities

I didn't think commercial whaling was legal...

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Posted in: Debate swirls over best abbreviation for McDonald's See in context

Tokyo vs Osaka "dialects" are really splitting hairs. I've lived in Osaka and lots (most) people say "Maku"... then one guy from Osaka says "Makudo" and everybody goes "oooooooh Osaka dialect" (although it's just as common in Tokyo.)

Personally I call McDonalds Maccas and the Yanks never know what I'm talking about...

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Posted in: Kanji catching on all over, but frequently misunderstood See in context

Yeah I'm not a fan of the tats in Japanese... particularly when the branded cow can't even read Japanese, but they still feel that kanji will make something more meaningful.

A guy I know came to Japan with pale white skin... nerdy guy, but on his back had some weird kanji + a picture of some anime guy. I think he thought this would make him cool... in reality it just meant he couldn't go to the onsen, and stuck out as an even weirder geek.

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Posted in: Australia gets its 1st female prime minister as Rudd ousted See in context

"Is the Lawsuit against Japan at the ICR still happening, etc?"

Ooooh I think so... Gillard is further left than Rudd. She's ditched a mining tax, and is more likely to go back to carbon trading...etc. Undoubtedly Peter Garrett will be let off his leash a little as well... I can see him campaigning against whaling (like he used to when he was with the Oils.)

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Posted in: IWC meeting abuzz over Japan vote-buying accusations See in context

It's food for those countries seeking legal action against Japan in international courts. Be interesting to see how these bribe allegations stack up in the international court...

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Posted in: IWC opens meeting with focus on commercial whaling ban See in context

I was reading that the international community is getting serious because Japan has paid rego fees for certain countries and also provided them with prostitutes. In my opinion this should be banned...

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Posted in: Internet service company to show 'The Cove' in Japan See in context

Meh we should project a copy of it onto a big city building or something one day with big speakers...

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Posted in: Why Japanese property managers are so strict on renting apartments See in context

I've never had an estate agent say no to me on the grounds that I'm a foreigner. I think they say no to people because they work for Nova, don't make much money, actively say "key money is b/s" and speak no Japanese (so can't read the hefty paperwork required to rent a property.)

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Posted in: Dolphin hunt film canceled in Tokyo after protests See in context

All I can say is this... if whaling/dolphin hunting (which the movie calls the same thing) are really Japanese culture, then why isn't it something they are proud of?

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Posted in: Dolphin hunt film canceled in Tokyo after protests See in context

What a farce, it's like canning to kill a mockingbird because people didn't like the message around the time. Not saying The Cove is anywhere near as good in terms of quality as a text, but it has a message, and I don't think things should be canned just because a vocal minority smells change and doesn't want it published.

If the Japanese people who don't like this are so proud, why don't they make their own documentary that portrays their feelings and views their practices in a more positive light? I'll watch that... and I can tell you, it's not gonna be banned in the USA, Australia, UK, Canada...etc just because people don't like dolphin hunting.

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Posted in: Australia to take Japan to int'l court over whaling See in context

The guys at www.rant-a-day.com did a decent report on this I think.

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Posted in: Australia to take Japan to int'l court over whaling See in context

I like the fact that it will be a court case rather than a popularity contest, whereby Japan has bribed countries to vote with it.

One reason the USA, Australia, NZ, UK...etc (most of the world) have not counter-bribed countries to vote for their opinion is because in a court of law this will be significant. I can just see Japan arguing "but the IWC voted..." and the Judge saying "but only because you bribed them... how dodgy is that!"

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Posted in: How long to learn Japanese? See in context

I think that unless you REALLY want to learn kanji then it's impossible. I speak decent Japanese and have passed my JLPT level 3, but above that I have absolutely no interest in mastering Japanese...

That said, I know a really weird chick who LOVES manga... she reads it every day and studied kanji up until say 4am every day because she LOVES Japan and manga... so had a reason so learn. She was what I'd call basically perfect after about 3 years.

I don't think it's THAT hard to master Japanese, you just have to want to do it. Personally I have other interests...

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Posted in: High school student arrested for stabbing father in Chiba See in context

Who knows what happened... so many conclusions being jumped to. Attempted murder is the obvious issue here. Whether or not the father was violent, this was not an act of self defence, it was an attempted murder on a sleeping man.

If he's beating up his wife and kids... they should call the police, not try to take the law into their own hands. A pre-meditated attempted murder is a much more serious crime than an assault, and "battered wife syndrome" is no excuse for this, as has been tested in many cases.

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Posted in: Back to the 'eikaiwa' drawing board See in context

Eikaiwa's do not offer long-term work prospects or any advantages for people with real teaching qualifications. They are what they are, and I think the teachers are basically expected to come over as fresh new graduates, party for a year, realise the system's rubbish the go home.

I don't know if people really want the "teachers" to stay?

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Posted in: David Cameron takes over as British prime minister See in context

This is the conservatives paired with the liberal democrats (a left wing party) though... It'll be hung and I doubt the conservatives will be able to achieve much.

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Posted in: Australia rejects proposal for limited whale hunts by Japan, Norway and Iceland See in context

"Last week, the IWC put forth a proposal that would allowing whaling nations to hunt without specifying whether it is for commercial or other purposes"

Should read... last week, Japan put forth a proposal to the IWC that would allow whaling nations to hunt without specifying whether it is for commercial or other purposes.

Australia rejected it... so did everybody else.

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Posted in: Anti-smoking 'monsters' have smokers on the run See in context

"First of all...you seem stressed. Have a smoke and relax. And your passport may say resident...but until you vote you are a foreigner."

For the record, permanent residents can now vote in Japan...

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Posted in: Anti-smoking 'monsters' have smokers on the run See in context

Raise the taxes on the smokes... in Japan there's no tax on tobacco, so I have to pay their taxes. Health insurance is 40,000 yen a month for me, and all it does is pay for people who are sick because they smoke. Everybody in Australia gets more comprehensive insurance for free... oh and cigarettes are about $15 a packet rather than $1.50...

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Posted in: Anti-smoking 'monsters' have smokers on the run See in context

Meh so the crux... I'm happy that people are calling us all "monsters." I think this is proof that the pressure is mounting, and smokers are finding that people have the guts to stand up to them.

In the past it was silence that made smoking continue. Kids in cars... mum/dad would just smoke all over them... "shut up" if they complain. Public transport, restaurants, offices... you name it, nobody said anything. Now even in Japan, it's changing. I'm proud that Japanese people are showing some guts and saying "NO, DON'T SMOKE ALL OVER ME!" They have the right to, and should be encouraged to do so rather than staying silent, in fear that they might be showing disrespect towards them. I say good! They're disrespecting you in every way... why should you show them respect?

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Posted in: Anti-smoking 'monsters' have smokers on the run See in context

With regard to smoking, it's public policy that is slowly being introduced by Japanese authorities. I'm not trying to tell them what to do; they've banned smoking on trains/subways/shinkansens already. Now some prefectures are banning smoking. I'm not criticising Japan, I'm saying I like the policies that the Japanese people are introducing.

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Posted in: Anti-smoking 'monsters' have smokers on the run See in context

"I wonder why smoking is demonized but not alcohol." Last time I checked, I'm not allowed to take a 10 minute break from work to go have a swig of whiskey, I'd be fired on the spot if I did so. If I drive after drinking ANY alcohol (regardless of whether I'm drunk) then I'll lose my license and possibly go to gaol.

Alcohol is already "banned" from situations where it can hurt people other than the consumer. Anti-smoking saviours are simply asking for the same rules to be applied to tobacco. No 10 minute smoke-o, no smoking in the car with kids, no smoking in family restaurants, no smoking in the park next to my kids.

I know people who have stopped smoking (or control their smoking so that they don't do it during work hours, or around other people unless it's at the smoker's pit.) It's not THAT hard, and I think regulations will simply make it clear to the people who lack the decency to restrict their smoking, that their behaviour is unacceptable. All smokers seem to claim to be victims! If the majority of you had curbed your habit, then it wouldn't have gotten to the stage where it needs to be banned... simple as that.

Moderator: Readers, please stay on topic. Alcohol is not relevant to this discussion.

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Posted in: Anti-smoking 'monsters' have smokers on the run See in context

There's a BIG difference between asserting yourself and being a monster.Non-smokers have been made to put up with second hand smoke for far too long in Japan. The problem is that if you allow smoking in a venue, then everybody has to smoke if you include passive smokers. Non-smokers make up the majority of people in Japan (which has a relatively high percentage of smokers compared to most countries... 10% in Australia, 30% in Japan.) Non-smokers have the right to assert themselves... sorry if this seems like us being monsters.

Ironically when calling anti-smoking people fascists... maybe a dictionary would help? The people who have allowed smoking for so long in Japan are the right-wing parties, who have had very close relationships with big tobacco corporations (that's what fascism is all about... being in the pockets of big corporations.) So calling those who try to attack the big corporations "fascists" does have a tone of irony about it.

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Posted in: Right-wingers vow to block release of 'The Cove' in Japan See in context

I think like the rest of the world, Japan is open to criticism.

"betraying Japanese national pride"

News to you... most countries are open to attacks on their pride. I sorta like being Australian because we well uuum... lack national pride? We're not always out there saying "OUR COUNTRY IS THE BEST!!!!" "WE MAKE THE BEST QUALITY PRODUCTS IN THE WORLD!!!" "OUR HISTORY IS WAY DEEPER THAN YOUR HISTORY!!!!"

The USA is just like Australia... the only think they take pride in is making fun of themselves (e.g. The Simpsons and Southpark)... I think part of "fitting in" is having a bit of humility.

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Posted in: Japan's food culture is an endangered species See in context

"A definition of Japan's food culture is hardly restricted solely to the whale/dolphin/tuna issue, and in fact, Japanese cuisine as a whole is highly regarded throughout much of the world."

Exactly. The GOOD stuff (AKA more popular foods) are available anywhere worldwide. They will never die.

The silly little things that conservatives and old bats try to hang onto... they only survive because they are HEAVILY government subsidised.

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Posted in: Japan's food culture is an endangered species See in context

What food culture?

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Posted in: Three cheers See in context

What I like is that in Japan nobody hurts people for giving it a go (even if you're old, ugly and have no skill.)

Australia (my home) is so judgemental with regard to such things... if you don't have the skill and you don't look good then you're encouraged to pack up and go home because others think you look stupid.

Japan... you can just give it a go no matter what. I like that...

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Posted in: Victory See in context

No, not a "mouthpiece", a mouthguard!! Haven't any of you guys played contact sports before? I believe wearing a mouthguard is compulsory...

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