theyounglion comments

Posted in: What is hell? Book stirs debate about afterlife See in context

I would bet that the majority of people who come to this website know more than enough about the basics of Christianity...even the agnostics and atheists (who grew up surrounded by it). But there is very little understanding among westerners about Shintoism and Buddhism. I'd rather see articles about philosophical questions involving those two faiths here. But I've been coming to this site for more than 12 years, and I rarely see stories about them. I see more stories about stuff having to do with Christianity.

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Posted in: Forgotten celebrities, villains, victims - 20 years later See in context

Interesting story about folks that generated so much ink and TV time back then, but are all but forgotten today. (Though I certainly remember Noboyuki Sato, and I'm glad he's still rotting in jail.) Why don't you do a little series in which you write about the other 18 people featured in the Shukan Shincho article? Or at least one more article naming all of them and giving us short paragraph blurbs about who they are and what they did?

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Posted in: With staid Japan as host, no silly shirts for APEC leaders See in context

Are we supposed to accept the premise that the APEC leaders wearing the traditional clothes of the host countries is "silly" just because the writer of the article framed it that way? I happen to think the annual photos of world leaders shedding the stuffy, boring suit-and-tie outfit and donning traditional local attire are cool and something to look forward to. It also serves to humanize them a bit. It's really too bad that Japan has to be the spoilsport in this recent APEC tradition.

I seem to remember there is one day out of the year when Diet members are encouraged to shed the western duds and attend the day's session wearing traditional kimonos. A photo of those who do is usually published in a few newspapers and magazines. I enjoy seeing that too.

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Posted in: Leonardo DiCaprio, Nicolas Cage arrive in Japan See in context

Thank you, ReikiZen. Just because people profess certain ideals doesn't mean they can live up to them 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year even if they wanted to. What, does not having a 100% track record of doing so automatically make someone a hypocrite and a phony? Real life doesn't work that way.

Who knows what the situation was for DiCaprio coming over...where he was coming from, what time he had to be in Tokyo for whatever film-related activities, etc.? If the private jet (which was probably already coming with other people associated with the movie) was the only flight that worked for him coming over, then so be it.

Show me that the guy has a sustained pattern of not doing what he preaches, then I'll believe he's a hypocrite. Point out a few instances of him not doing so (with no context, like how many times he flies a year, what other means there were available for him to get somewhere when he had to be there, etc.), then it's just griping for the sake of griping.

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Posted in: Namie Amuro turns down offer of special Grammy TV show See in context

Kudos to the folks here who pointed out that just because some entertainment reporter speculated something doesn't mean it's true. These people get paid to come up with juicy quotes suggesting things like, "She did it to avoid stepping on her boyfriend's career toes." As if they know what was going on in Amuro's mind.

Some of the comments here seem to suggest that Amuro's appearance on the Grammy program would have gotten her exposure in the west. From what I understand, the show wouldn't have been seen in the west, but just broadcast on WOWOW from the Grammy ceremony...meaning a Japanese-only audience. WOWOW simply paid for the rights to show the ceremony and air their coverage from the actual event.

I'm with Namiefan. Who is Lady Gaga compared to Namie Amuro? Gaga might have the greater global fame now due to the power and worldwide reach of western media, but the jury is out as to whether she will have a 15-year staying power like Namie...something that is notoriously difficult in the music industry, today more than ever. The article seems to suggest that because Amuro admires Gaga, then it's odd she doesn't chase after her given the chance. Heck, Paul McCartney likes the Black Eyed Peas, but that doesn't mean Sir Paul would stop at nothing to be seen with them. Because he's Paul McCartney! This is my own speculation -- which means take it with a grain of salt -- but perhaps aside from being more concerned with being a parent, Namie is secure enough in her own career and status that she doesn't feel the need to chase after another celebrity she likes.

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Posted in: Fox TV reporter Ako Koizumi shines on See in context

Ako's work ethic is amazing. She's worked really hard for her success. On top of that, she is one of the smartest, nicest, and most down-to-earth women I've met in Tokyo. One of my favorite people to hang out with. Her recent success doesn't surprise me in the least. Also, she's not just sitting around waiting for her future to happen. She's strategically planning for it. She'll go far. Sure, I'm biased. But that doesn't make it any less true.

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Posted in: Airhead female fans can't get enough of 'cool' accused killer Ichihashi See in context

As sick and twisted as this is, it's not correct that this is a Japan thing. Murderers and serial killers attract female groupies all over. It happens all the time in the U.S.

Maybe the most famous example is "The Night Stalker" Richard Ramirez, who went on a killing spree in the U.S. (in California) in the 1980's. He very famously attracted a large number of female fans despite the brutality of his crimes. In the wake of his trial he got a lot of gifts and marriage proposals from women swooning over how handsome they found him, how cool they thought he looked and sounded when he made his infamous proclamations in court that were then televised (i.e. "I don't fear the death penalty. It comes with the territory").

There are also a significant number of women in the U.S. who meet and marry killers in prison after learning about them because of publicity surrounding their crimes and trials.

The big difference here is that the internet has put such twisted swooning and pining directly on display for the public to see. But this kind of dumb behavior has been happening for a long time in other places.

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Posted in: Actress Chie Tanaka sees future in Chinese-language cinema See in context

Congrats to her for taking a big chance and putting in the hard work to get to her current level of success. She recognized the difficulty of getting ahead in the extremely competitive Japanese entertainment industry, where actual talent is just one of many factors used to determine who gets a career push, and where aspiring -- even established -- actors have little control over what happens in their career. (True everywhere, but especially so in Japan.) She saw an opportunity, set out on the path it took to reach her goal, and tackled head-on the huge obstacle in the way (learning Mandarin at a sufficient level).

I hope she's able to maintain and build on her current success.

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Posted in: X JAPAN to perform at Madison Square Garden See in context

Ah, but here's the real question: Are they performing in the ARENA, or are they performing in the THEATER? The arena holds 20,000 people, but the theater holds as little as 2,000 people and as many as 5,600. I remember when I lived in New York City, Japanese acts would announce to the press that they were playing Madison Square Garden...but they'd conveniently leave out that their show was in the theater, not the arena.

Maybe I could see them playing the arena if they've got tour packages for their fans in Japan that they're heavily advertising. With the occasion of an X concert, a reason to go to New York City, the chance to see them in Madison Square Garden, and the weak dollar, maybe enough Japanese fans would go over to get a decent arena crowd for the show. If, however, the band is relying on New York area-based fans (including local Japanese fans), then I expect it'll be a theater show.

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