Hungry For Some Singaporean Food? You Can now Enjoy a Taste of Singapore in Central Tokyo!

If you’ve visited Singapore, you may be familiar with the tasty local noodle dish, hokkien mee. Well, now that the Singapore Restaurant and hokkien mee specialty shop “Yac Man” has opened in Omote-Sando, those of you based near Tokyo won’t have to travel all the way to Singapore to get your fix! And since we’re always on the lookout for new and interesting foods, we sent one of our reporters to “Yac Man” to see what hokkien mee is all about.

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Customer Service (and Customers) in Japan vs. the West: A Japanese Perspective

One of the things almost all foreign tourists to Japan comment on is the quality of customer service. The phrase “the customer is god” is hammered into Japanese customer service and restaurant staff and the politeness and thoroughness with which they tend to you certainly does a great job at making you feel like one.

Yet while there are plenty of stories on the net about Japanese customer service from a foreigner’s perspective, what do the Japanese think about the rest of the world’s manners?

Reiko Kawakami over at Excite Japan shares her observations about shopping and customer service in the West vs. Japan based on her experience living abroad in England, Italy and Romania.

So how does a lady hailing from a country where the customer is king view these 3 Western countries? Her analysis follows below:

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Adorable New “Pokemomo” Brand Goods Coming to Pokemon Center Stores Across Japan

Collecting is one of the predominate themes of the Pokémon franchise and Nintendo never seems to run out of new things for fans to spend their Pokédollars on.

For example, on August 3, The Pokémon Company reveled, “Pokemomo,” their newest lineup of adorable Pokémon merchandise featuring the artwork of Japanese illustrator Momo Okada.

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Watch a Businessman Go to Work on an Adorable Sewn Bento

A lone salaryman walks in to a room with bento in hand and sits down at a table to enjoy his lunch in privacy. He unties the knot holding together the bandana bundle to reveal a small brown bento box and chopsticks case. Finally, the man removes the lid from the bento to unveil a mouth-watering assortment of…colored yarn?

What follows is some hardcore lunchtime needlework.

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Limited Edition Bathroom Scale Features Japanese Voice of Barney and Phoenix Wright

Famous bathroom scale manufacturer Tanita is joining forces with Nippon Cultural Broadcasting to create a limited edition high grade bathroom scale featuring two of the most prolific voice actors in Japan, Daisuke Ono and Takayuki Kondo.

The machine itself isn’t so much a bathroom scale as it is a body composition meter allowing you to get a crystal clear idea of what’s going on under your hood.

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Young Japanese Women Becoming Less Interested in Sex, Survey Says

For the past few years, Japan has been in a fuss about soushoku danshi, literally translated as “herbivore boys.” These are young men who represent the antithesis of the rowdy, skirt-chasing, big-spending corporate man associated with the 1980s bubble economy: they’re passive, conservative with money, prefer to stay in instead of going out drinking with coworkers and are generally uninterested in sex.

Such personal lifestyle choices wouldn’t be considered problematic if Japanese society wasn’t struggling with a declining birthrate and low consumer spending. But when an ever-increasing portion of your male population is enjoying their evening with a cup of tea at the local manga cafe when you need them to be out buying cars and procreating, you’ve got a situation on your hands.

To make matters worse, a survey conducted by The Japanese Association for Sex Education (JASE) reveals that the number of young Japanese women who have had sex has decreased dramatically over the past 6 years.

Perhaps the ladies of Japan have finally given up on trying to get their male counterparts into bed and joined convent themselves.

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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?


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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Clever Girl… Deadly Bird Escapes Into Japanese Wild

Anyone thinking of traveling to the northern Japanese prefecture of Akita in the near future may want to make sure the power is online first seeing as an adult male Southern Cassowary — said to be the deadliest bird in the world — escaped into the wild early last Friday.

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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] Hot Japanese Male Gymnast Inspires Chinese Women to Create Homo-Erotic Fantasies with Equally Sexy German Male Gymnast

Controversy hit the men’s team all-around gymnastics event as a mishandled score was appealed by the Japanese team earning them a silver medal thereby knocking out an angry Ukraine team and angering fans of a now Bronze winning Great Britain team.

It’s a murky controversy that may have implications on how appeals are dealt with in future games.

However, leave it to women with their filthy minds to make everything about sex.  For as the Japanese team accepted their silver with mixed emotions, women in China were going nuts over “the sexiest guy of the London Olympics.”

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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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Mr. Sato Cosplays as Slime and Waits in Line 24 Hours to Purchase Dragon Quest X

August 1 was a big day for Japan as it marked the release of Dragon Quest X, the latest installment in the iconic series and the first to force players to play online. While the release of a new Dragon Quest game is usually something akin to a national holiday here, many people were wondering if mandatory online play wasn’t too tall of an order for a series traditionally known for sticking to its tried and true formula.

To get an idea of just how excited the country really is over Dragon Quest X, we sent resident reporter Mr. Sato to a video game shop in Shibuya the day before release to stand in line until the store opened the game went on sale the next day at 7:00 am.

Of course, anyone can wait in line for a day, but it takes a true Dragon Quest fan like Mr. Sato to wait in line for a day dressed as the series’ most beloved monster, slime.

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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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South Korea Hates Japan More Than North Korea & Loves America, Gallup Poll Reveals

Nothing brings a nation together like a common enemy and the Olympics give us an excuse to degrade every other country on the planet world without it seeming xenophobic.

It was in the midst of this festive atmosphere that Gallup Korea published their annual poll showing the country’s opinion of the rest of the world. The results? South Korea hates Japan even more than North Korea and loves America the most.

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Meet Family Mart’s Newest Employee, Hatsune Miku

A while back we reported on Hatsune Miku’s hijacking of four Family Mart convenience stores.  This time, however, Family Mart has turned the tables by hijacking Hatsune Miku herself and hiring her as a store clerk.

The news comes during a display at Wonder Festival (Wonfes) Summer 2012 by figurine makers Good Smile Company.  In the display figures of Miku sporting a Family Mart Uniform (with a few cute alterations) could be seen.  These will be part of an upcoming promotional event between the popular Vocaloid and convenience store chain.

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