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Recycling Food in Japan

Kjeld Duits, Thursday, November 30, 2006 Posted: 09:27 PM JST

(by Junko Edahiro and Yuriko Yoneda) - Daily meals are source of our energy. Dining together is essential for us not only from a nutritional perspective but also as a good occasion to communicate with families and friends. At the same time, we should note that a certain amount of food waste is always created whenever we have a meal. This article outlines the current situation of food waste recycling in Japan.


Intimate Photography: Tokyo, Nostalgia and Sex

Kjeld Duits, Thursday, November 23, 2006 Posted: 10:21 AM JST

In an excellent interview published in the Japan Times today, controversial (to some) Japanese photographer Nobuyoshi Araki likens photography to making love. "The time," Araki says, "when a picture is taken is like an emotion, it's like a sexual encounter. It's like a f--k! So, timing is very important. ... Taking pictures is a lot like sexual foreplay. Even though sex ends in an orgasm, it is not just a f--k. A lot of my pictures are foreplay but the best ones are orgasms." (More about Araki on Wikipedia)

Keywords: culture_news

US Says Konnichiwa to the Style of Uniqlo

Kjeld Duits, Wednesday, November 22, 2006 Posted: 06:38 AM JST

(by Jean Scheidnes, in the USA) - Watch out, Gap. A Japanese apparel giant has just landed on U.S. shores with a long-range plan to challenge your supremacy.

Uniqlo is often called the Gap of Japan, but that designation, believe it or not, understates the store's ubiquity there. Japan has 17 percent more Uniqlos per capita than the U.S. has Gaps. And it has them all in an area the size of Montana.


Japan Rediscovers Granny's Wisdom

Kjeld Duits, Tuesday, November 21, 2006 Posted: 09:22 PM JST

A book titled "Honke, Obaachan no Chiebukuro" (Gramma's Collection of Wisdom, Standard Edition) was released on August 31, 2006. The book was edited by a Japanese NPO and published by Gakken Co. for the purpose of spotlighting traditional Japanese wisdom and customs passed down for generations.


Japanese Fall in Love with Nature

Kjeld Duits, Tuesday, November 21, 2006 Posted: 09:19 PM JST

Over 85 percent of respondents showed an increased interest in nature, according to an opinion poll released in September 2006 by the Cabinet Office of Japan. The poll also confirmed a rise in the number of respondents who said that nature conservation is the most critical issue, exceeding for the first time those who valued the harmonious coexistence of human society and nature.


Japan's Irrational Fear of (Phantom) Crime

Kjeld Duits, Friday, November 17, 2006 Posted: 12:45 PM JST

Over the years I have done quite a few articles on crime in Japan. Delving into crime figures dating way back to the fifties I discovered that Japan is much safer today than is generally believed. Japanese newspapers and magazines often print screaming headlines about the increase in crime. Japanese TV, especially the 'wide shows', seem to show nothing but crime. They go into the tiniest horrifying detail.

There is a strong feeling among Japanese that crime is getting worse every year. Especially foreigners are blamed. The truth is that the only thing on the increase is fear, media coverage of crime and anti-crime measures. Companies selling security measures, news media and the police benefit from this irrational fear, so they continue fanning the myth. Crime in Japan has been falling for years. And foreigners play a far smaller role than is presented.


Onitsuka Tiger Returns to its Hometown

Kjeld Duits, Friday, November 17, 2006 Posted: 12:20 PM JST

Japanese legendary sports fashion brand Onitsuka Tiger will open a flagship store in Kobe, where the brand was born in 1949, on November 25.

Onitsuka Tiger Kobe is located in the Kyukyoryuchi district where foreign merchants lived when the port of Kobe was first opened in the 1860s. Contrasting with the stone facade, the store interior is a mixture of Japanese classic and modern. The use of paperboards decorated with crafted wood creates a feel of a traditional house with a sophisticated touch.


Cost of Living in Japan

Kjeld Duits, Friday, November 17, 2006 Posted: 11:59 AM JST

I was asked about the cost of living in Japan this week, so I thought it would be a good idea to publish some figures. Please add your own experience with Japanese prices in the comments.


Grandmother Gives Birth to Own Grandchild

Kjeld Duits, Tuesday, November 7, 2006 Posted: 10:53 AM JST

A woman in her late fifties became the surrogate mother for her daughter this Spring it was revealed last month by Nagano Prefecture obstetrician Yahiro Nezu. The fertilized egg was provided by her daughter, whose uterus had been removed because of cancer, and the daughter's husband. Japan, or at least its news media, seems to have trouble accepting this medical development. Some editorial comments from Japanese newspapers:


Japanese Buttsex

Kjeld Duits, Sunday, November 5, 2006 Posted: 02:42 PM JST

America appears to be falling in love with 'Japanese butsex'. The Village Voice this week published its second article about yaoi, manga of boys who fall in love, with other boys. Having lived in Japan for almost a quarter of a century now, the article surprised me.


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The now legendary Sir Ernest Mason Satow (1843-1929) was a member of the British legation in Tokyo for twenty-one years. This classic book is based on the author's detailed diary, personal encounters, and keen memory. In it, Satow records the history of the critical years of social and political upheaval that accompanied Japan's first encounters with the West around the time of the Meiji Restoration. Fascinating.
Stone Bridge Press

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