Master Blaster

Writer / Translator

Master Blaster is the two-man translating team of Canada’s Steven Le Blanc and Japan’s Masami M, a pair who in addition to writing work are in English education and created the StudyNow app for Japanese students of English.

Together they have written somewhere around 1,500 articles for RocketNews24 covering such diverse topics as Chinese men selling sanitary napkins to each other and a Japanese guy dragging an ear of corn around the Tokyo train system. A few of these were actually good, but don’t take our word for it! Here’s what our beloved readers had to say:

“One isn't always in the mood for bold tastes. But when I'm in the mood for bold flavor I turn to you.”
“Stupid article. Who cares what the Japanese think it's cool. You don't call a monkey, "gorilla".”
“You know, this is about the most cogent explanation of how a turbocharger works that I have ever seen in the non-motorsports world.”
“Thanks for the article peter!”
“It's people like you who make exploitation possible.”
“It looks yummy and the story was great. Thank you for the smile.”

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Posted by Master Blaster

Domino’s Pizza “Manager of Excellence” Pawns His Domino’s Themed Rolex Reward, Company Appears Shaken

There are many pizza places in the world but very few have achieved the worldwide notoriety of Domino’s Pizza.  So it’s comforting to know that they reward their workers handsomely when outstanding work is done.

In Japan, a manager deemed “excellent” by the corporation gets rewarded a Rolex watch.  Granted the Rolex is engraved with the Domino’s logo in places, but it’s still a Rolex, and it’s worth a pretty penny too according to the pawn shop one was sold to.

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Internet Ladies Going Nuts Over Gymnast’s Arm Pit Hair, Fantasies Involve Using It as Seasoning

Move over Ryohei Kato! There’s another male gymnast whipping women into a frenzy online.  His name is Kohei Uchimura, and while his boyish good looks and personality scores points with the ladies, it’s a certain part of his body tucked away that sets him apart from others.

That’s right. Women can’t seem to get enough of Uchimura’s arm pit hair.  In fact, there’s a lot of talk of using it a garnish as one person commented “I want to sprinkle his fresh pit hair over my soba and savor the taste.”

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Bottles? We Don’t Need No Stinking Bottles! In China Everyone Carries Cucumbers to Beat the Heat

In these dog days of summer it’s a pretty good idea to carry around a bottle of water or sports drink to stay safe from heat stroke.  However, in China, home of the melt-proof ice pop, people are into a much more low tech way to keep cool.

One of our reporters was standing at a traffic signal in Shanghai when he spotted an attractive businesswoman rummaging through her purse.  Finding what she was looking for, she pulled out a huge cucumber and started munching on it as nonchalantly as one would drink a cup of coffee from Starbuck’s.  Mildly aroused, he decided to investigate this spontaneous act more deeply.

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“A 10 Year History of Stitch” Offers Fans of the Blue Rascal More than They Could Hope For

Tottori is a prefecture in western Japan famous mostly for some really large sand dunes and not much else.  Well, actually it’s also the birthplace of many famous manga writers and artists like Shigeru Mizuki, leading to the creation of promanga organization, Manga Kingdom Tottori, whose goal is to make Tottori a funner place through manga.

Their most recent project is an exhibition dedicated to international comics called Tottori Manga Dream World that spans three venues around Tottori.  Also, throughout the latter half of 2012, they will be hosting a special exhibit featuring Japan’s favorite Disney Character, Stitch.

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Filipinos Remarkably Upbeat During Massive Flood

On 6 August a large part of the Philippines was hit with approximately half a month’s worth of rain inside a period of 24 hours causing severe flooding.  The capital city, Manila was among the many regions affected.

The death toll as of this writing has reached 60.  But what is amazing about this catastrophe beyond its scale is the resilience of the Filipino spirit, as illustrated in these surreal photos and videos.

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How Many Winks Can You Expect to Catch with these Blindfolds? Over NINE THOUSAAAAAAND!

Have trouble getting to sleep? The sensory depriving qualities of a sleep mask might be just what you’re looking for.  Sure, you may think eye masks are for wealthy dowagers and other fuddy-duddies. However, these masks cater to the hip, urbanite otaku in all of us with patterns ranging from mainstream (Sailor Moon) to the obscure (Black Butler).

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There’s Something About Sawa

As the Japanese women’s soccer team walks away from the London Olympics with a respectable yet somewhat regrettable silver medal, many of them will return to a normal life.

For Homare Sawa, the national team’s top scorer and Fifa’s Woman Player of the Year, this means she can finally get back to her secondary claim to fame – sex symbol.  If there’s one thing international fame has brought to Sawa, it is an expanded legion of men who would like to spend some time together.

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Yakuza Themed Restaurant Operating in Bangkok, Still Not Sure Why Thailand Digs the Yakuza

There seems to be something about the yakuza that appeals to the people of Thailand.  First, we witnessed a brand of possibly yakuza themed tea: Chakuza.  Now we are presented with Yakuzaaa Man Man Japanese Kitchen, which seems to be a hit with local youths and foreigners.  You might be thinking from the name that it’s a gay restaurant, but it’s not.

At least I’m pretty sure it’s not…

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We Lose All Sense of Time and Space in the Magical and Beautiful Lello & Irmão Bookstore

In these days of digital media the world is losing more and more brick & mortar shops, which is a shame.  Take ebooks for example.  Sure they’re infinitely more convenient and less space consuming.  But half the fun of reading is going to the book store to find hidden gems and what could be your next favorite. No matter what book store you go to you can’t help but get filled with a sense of elegance and tranquility.

With that in mind, photographer Koach, before capturing the second most beautiful bookstore in Argentina, started his journey in Portugal at the oppositely designed but equally beautiful, Livraria Lello & Irmão (Lello for short).

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Samsung Fights to Expel Dr. Dre’s Headphones From the Olympics

It must be hard to be an Olympic athlete with all that pressure to perform with the eyes of the world watching you and asking you to do your very best in that one moment.  Not to mention that most of them are far from home in a strange land with strange customs.

For many, the best way to relax the mind and get reconnected to your homeland is by music.  And there’s no better way to deliver this acoustic tranquilizer than through a pair of the increasingly popular brand of Beats by Dr. Dre headphones.  Unfortunately, electronics giant Samsung wants to take those away from the athletes.

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COCOROBO Is the Funnest Vacuum Cleaner Ever! I Know That’s Not Saying a Lot but It’s Really Fun

When robot vacuum cleaners first hit the scene about a decade ago, they appeared to signal the end of lugging around traditional upright models.  However, with a pretty hefty price tag and comparatively limited cleaning ability, they haven’t exactly caught the world on fire.

Seeing this, Sharp has developed a robot vacuum cleaner destined to light a fire under consumers: ladies and gentlemen, meet COCOROBO (also affectionately known as, RX-V100W). So what makes COCOROBO so great? Well, for starters, it’s remote-controlled and able to talk with people.

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Japanese Criminal Arrested After Visiting Police on the Advice of His Victim

A 19 year-old male university student was arrested on suspicion of violating the Minor Offenses Act for attempting to video tape inside another female university student’s room.

The shocking part was how he came to be arrested.  Before starting the story, I would like to emphasize that this criminal was enrolled in an institution of higher learning, which should imply a certain level of intelligence.

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“Sutra Master” is Cute, Confusing, and a Little Controversial, Goes on Sale at Comiket 82 by Ryoho Temple

Tokyo’s famous Comic Market (Comiket) 82, the world’s largest doujinshi convention, is set to kick off on 10 August.  We can be sure to expect cosplayers and original comics a plenty, but one particular creation has be stirring up a fair bit of hype weeks before the gates open – the PC game Sutra Master.

Sutras are, in a nutshell, short pearls of spiritual wisdom like something you might find in a high-brow fortune cookie and are often compared to prayers in other religions.  Taken from Buddhist texts and often chanted during meditation or religious ceremonies, sutras are generally treated with solemn dignity but Sutra Master takes them to a weird new place.

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How to Make a Horror Bento, Perfect for Fights with Loved Ones

We’ve covered the phenomenon of charabens in the past ranging from the extremely cute to the downright bizarre. However, as with any art form, the horror genre cannot be left out.  Inspired by some photos of horror bentos found online a reporter from the website Pouch, Hotaru Yamakawa, has decided to make her own series of 3 horror bentos and help you make your own.

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The other day RocketNews24 introduced a breakthrough energy saving and morale building program called Hyper-Gentleman’s Cool Biz which was met with a warm reception from the titans of industry.

Thanks to your report I’ve decided to start Hyper-Gentleman’s Cool Biz in my company.  The mankinis are on their way! But, I was wondering, how should I instruct my staff to alter their daily routines under HGCB?

Sincerely,

Larry Sage, CEO, Goggle Inc.

Well Larr, you’re in luck!  Because we have compiled a comprehensive multimedia guide to being a Hyper-Gentleman’s Cool Biz worker arranged in a streamlined manner for quick reference.

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Even Non-Alcoholic Drinks Should be Limited to 20 Years Old and Up According to Survey

To all our under-age readers, I feel for you.  Understandably, alcoholic drinks are off-limits as they can be harmful to your growth at a young age.  But now, it seems the adults want to take away your non-alcoholic drinks as well according to a recent survey.

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We Take a Slow Ride to the Disputed Russian/Japanese Island of Sakhalin, Taking a Boat Can be Much More Enriching than a Plane

While in Hokkaido I decided to go to the Sakhalin Island just North of Japan.  This island has had a long history of passing between Russian and Japanese control for centuries.  In the closing days of WWII Russian forces took the entire island although no treaty was made to officially declare their ownership.

As a Japanese person it stung a little to need a visa to visit this Sakhalin but the dispute over this island has been quieted recently.  A Japanese Consulate was established there and businesses in Japanese frequently make the trip thanks to warming ties between the two countries.

And so I decide to make the most of this journey by taking a ship rather than a plane.  Ultimately it was full of surprises – good and bad.

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[Olympics] Chinese Media Attempts to Annex 2 Kazakhstani Gold Medalists, Chinese People Wish Their Media Would Give It a Rest

During the London Olympics, two young ladies from the Kazakhstani team Zulfiya Chinshanlo (19) and Maiya Maneza (26) each earned gold medals in their respective weight classes as well as setting a World and Olympic Record respectively.

However, their celebrations were short lived as China’s state-run Xinhua News Agency declared that they are in fact secret Chinese nationals, Zhao Changing (19) and Yao Ling (26) who were sent on a clandestine mission to Kazakhstan to spread the sport.

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America Flexes Its Marketing Muscles by Turning a Bland Japanese Condiment into the Hippest New Diet Food

A common addition to many Japanese dishes is a substance called Konjac (Konnyaku in Japanese which may sound confusingly like Cognac). It’s a peculiar, virtually tasteless gelatinous mass that admittedly has an excellent texture to it.

What may come as a shock to millions of Japanese people is that America is beginning to embrace this garnish not as the Japanese have, but as a replacement for conventional pasta.

Thanks to the West’s keen marketing sense, Japan’s often underappreciated purplish-grey slab gelatin has been reborn there as Miracle Noodles!

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We Head to the Location of OS X Mountain Lion’s Desktop, “Blue Pond” and Soak In the Mysterious Beauty First Hand

Installed on the recently released OS X Mountain Lion is a breathtaking image of an aquamarine pond with trees growing out of it.  We previously gave you the impressions of the photographer Kent Shiraishi, but now we went straight to the real Blue Pond in Biei, Hokkaido to see if it lives up to the photo.

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