weird

This just in: Yawning bunnies are terrifying! 【Photo Gallery】

My entire life I’ve grown up thinking that bunnies are adorable. Who can resist those cotton ball tails and wiggling noses? They’re basically moving balls of fluff! However, after seeing a recent photo compilation of yawning bunnies on Japanese website, Karapaia, I feel so misinformed. Bunnies aren’t always cute, in fact, they can be downright terrifying. Take a look, if you dare, at 20 photos of yawning bunnies. They’ll change the way you look at rabbits forever.

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We devour a mountain of ramen (toppings)

By far the plainest, most bare-bones name for a guy in Japan is Taro. Look at just about any sample application form in the country, and nine times out of ten the applicant’s name will be listed as “Taro.” When coupled with a girl’s name like Hanako it’s the equivalent of “Dick and Jane,” showing up in children’s stories and textbooks.

Nonetheless,the name Taro is something of a classic, and a common choice for first-born sons. But change the first kanji character Taro is written with and you get “Jiro,” meaning more or less “second son.” Jiro doesn’t have quite the cachet of Taro, as it has a perpetual little brother-like ring to it.

Restaurant chain Ramen Jiro doesn’t play second fiddle to anyone, though, especially with creations like this.
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Japanese politicians are time lords! Government considers speeding time up by two hours

As a native of the United States, I’m all too familiar with the controversy around daylight savings time. I’m not sure if anyone actually “loves” it, but it certainly seems like most people hate it. WebMD, the Internet’s favorite doctor, even has an article about the effects the time change has on people’s health, though they seem minimal.

Either way, one of my favorite things about living in Japan is not having to worry about that annual spring torture of moving the clocks ahead by an hour. With no daylight savings, you always know what time it is in Japan. Unfortunately, it looks like one Japanese politician has it out for me and my beauty sleep. Read More

We answer the age old question: How many McDonald’s fries can one person stuff into their mouth in one sitting?

There’s something quite wonderful about the humble french fry. That combination of starch and grease, the crunchy outside and fluffy inside; it stimulates something deep in our reptile brains to create a tuber-induced euphoria. We could easily plow into and finish a new Mega Potato in one sitting; that’s child’s play. But there must be some upper limit to the amount of golden, crisp french fries one single human being can eat at one time, right? Right?!

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Horrifying Hello Kitty soap dispenser makes every restroom visit a test of will

Some brave soul on Twitter decided to stick some expired color contacts onto a Hello Kitty soap dispenser, inadvertently creating the above monstrosity that is guaranteed to turn every trip to the bathroom into an unnerving test of mental fortitude.

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Free Hugs? Uhh…Okay, Says Japan

The free hug boom that swept the world nearly a decade ago also made it to Japan. Though only on shaky legs, it seems.

In case you don’t remember or somehow missed it, the idea was that people would stand around in public areas holding signs that read, simply enough, “Free Hugs.” If interested, anyone was welcome to step forward for a warm embrace. Ostensibly, it was an attempt to spread love and peace, and it did seem to bring a lot of smiles to a lot of people. Overall, a net positive.

Though the movement seems mostly to have quieted, one Japanese writer in Tokyo has described his recent experience meeting some Japanese Free-Huggers. Read More

We Use Lotteria’s Ramen Burger to Make a Bowl of Ramen Noodles, Restore the Natural Balance of the Universe

On May 17, Japanese hamburger chain Lotteria’s ramen burger went on sale in the Tokyo area. Comprised of a slab of seasoned pork and a handful of noodles sandwiched inside a bun, with a cup of broth on the side, the sandwich is a collaboration between Lotteria and the popular ramen restaurant chain Musashi.

Representing the convergence of two of fast food’s all-stars, the ramen burger has been a hit, with lines stretching out the door when it went on sale. But our stomachs are fickle masters, and we decided to tear the two star-crossed lovers apart once again by using the ramen burger to make a bowl of ramen noodles. Read More

With Title “Happiest Place on Earth” Already Taken, Amusement Park on Cebu Island Makes Its Claim to Be the Sleepiest

When you’re a kid, theme parks are a place where your dream can come to life. Wouldn’t it be great to feel that excitement once again?

In search of that childlike wonder, one of RocketNews24’s reporters recently visited the Lecian Grand Carnaval amusement park in Mandaue City on Cebu Island, in the Philippines. While it doesn’t have the high-tech animatronics and pyrotechnics of Disneyland, it offers plenty of old-fashioned attractions like a tilt-a-whirl and haunted house, plus a life-endangering roller coaster and very lenient napping policy. Read More

Trapped in a Glass Cage in the Philippines, Mario Has No Mouth with which to Scream – The Shocking World of Knock-Off Plush Dolls

Recently, one of our correspondents was strolling through a shopping mall in Mandaue City on Cebu Island in the Philippines. As he passed an arcade, one of the attendants flagged him down, asking if he wanted to try to win a stuffed doll in one of their crane games.

Intrigued by the offer, our reporter peered into the machine’s glass case, at first thinking he saw popular Japanese anime characters Doraemon and Testuwan Atom (also know as Astro Boy internationally). Closer investigation though, revealed that the arcade was filled with cheap, yet somehow incredibly endearing, knock-offs.

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The Secret Slang of Japanese Cabbies

Like many people who moved to Tokyo in their youth, most of the time I’ve spent in Japanese taxi cabs has been directly preceded by heavy drinking. In the country’s urban centers, people primarily get around by train and subway. However, both of them stop running around midnight (for now?), at which time you can see a mass of people stumbling towards the station like Cinderella if she’d spent less time on the dance floor with the prince and more at the ball’s open bar. Once the trains stop, they don’t start again until about five in the morning, and since staying out all night drinking only seems like a good idea until your buzz wears off at around 2:30 a.m., if you missed the last train the only way you’re getting home is by taking a taxi.

Like taking a cab ride anywhere else in the world, the drivers use radios to communicate with the dispatcher and other cars in the fleet. I could never understand what Japanese taxi drivers were saying to each other, but the reason why isn’t because I was liquored up (OK, so it wasn’t only because I was liquored up). It turns out cab drivers in Japan have a whole set of jargon and code words that you won’t find in any textbooks. Read More

Korean Remote Controlled Turtle Project Making Slow But Steady Progress

One year when I was in junior high school my parents gave me a radio controlled car for Christmas. It was the perfect gift for a young boy right in the middle of dealing with the most awkward, confusing psychological change that comes with puberty (no longer thinking riding a bike is cool, but still being too young to drive a car). I loved that R/C car, so much that I kept playing with it outside as it started to rain one day, eventually frying the circuits so that it never ran again.

But things would have been different if my parents had been researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, or KAIST. First, everyone would have been surprised by how two Korean scientists ended up with a Caucasian son with blond hair. And next, they could have hooked me up with a controllable water-resistant reptile, like the remote controlled turtle KAIST is currently developing. Read More

To Mexico in Chains: The Tale of Three 16th Century Japanese Slaves

In 1597, Japan was reaching the end of the Warring States period and starting to unify under the rule of Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi. At the same time, which was 15 years after the Tenshô embassy (the first Japanese embassy to Europe), three Japanese men were completing their (unwilling) journey to Mexico, of all places.

Using records from the Inquisition found in the National Library of Mexico, Lucio de Sousa (University of Evora in Portugal) and Oka Mihoko (University of Tokyo) have discovered conclusive proof of the men’s journey to the New World. They’ve also managed to piece together a few details of their stories.

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Let It Rip with Japanese Company’s Stress-Relieving Notepad

The company Edit, based in Tokyo’s Chiyoda Ward, produces a variety of notebooks. Most of them come with specialized forms on each page, such as a cooking notebook with separate boxes for ingredient names, amounts, and cooking directions. The company’s more unique offerings include a pitcher’s notebook with a three-by-three grid to mark each throw as high or low, inside or outside, and a horse racing journal to record bets, wins (hopefully), and losses (inevitably).

The pages of Edit’s newest big seller are completely blank, though. What’s more, if customers follow the instructions for using it, they’ll never be able to refer back to what they wrote, because the pages are designed to feel good as you rip them into shreds. Read More

Catch-22: Guys Interested in Small Breasts are Probably the Type of Guy Girls Should Stay Far, Far Away From

New research from Japan takes a look into the psychology of male bewb preference and is shedding some unfavorable light on the inner workings of the small breast-loving male mind, resulting in an unfortunate catch-22 for small-chested women: the type of guy who appreciates your size is probably also a pervy weirdo.

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Saudi Arabian Reporter Floored by Things Japanese Take for Granted

The Saudi Arabian television program Hawatel Kaizen (a combination of the Arabic word for “thoughts” and the Japanese for “improvement”) is a series of reports by Arabic reporters in which they share things they have been impressed by in Japan. A Japanese TV show in turn did a feature on Hawatel Kaizen, in which the panel of Japanese TV personalities were amused by the enthusiastic responses of Saudi reporter, Ahmad, to things Japanese citizens take for granted.

So in an effort to be as international as possible, RocketNews24 brings you an English recap of a Japanese TV program reacting to another program in which a Saudi Arabian reporter reacts to Japan. Read More

Gas Attack! Can Holding In Farts Be Bad For you?

You’re on a date with the most amazing person you’ve ever met. It’s all going well, and you know you’re not going home alone tonight. But as you finish up your meal, it hits you out of nowhere: the stomach rumbles of a vicious fart. Your mind races: what to do?! Should you hold it in or break wind and try to blame it on the waiter?

Well, today we have a translation of a Japanese article about this very topic! Now you’ll know what happens when you hold in those Silent-But-Deadlies.

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Original Japanese Kirby Was Even Less Hardcore

No discussion of the pantheon of video game heroes is complete without mentioning HAL Laboratory’s Kirby. Including his recently-released 20th anniversary collection, the adorable pink puffball has close to two dozen appearances under his belt, which is an impressive feat for someone who lacks a waist.

Kirby has also gotten a bit of free publicity from website TV Tropes, with its “American Kirby is Hardcore” entry, which catalogues how the images of Kirby and other fictional characters are “toughened up” in marketing to make them more appealing to U.S. audiences.

In recent years, Kirby’s earned enough gamer goodwill to be as cute as he wants to in any market. Even still, we’re guessing he would have had a tough time of it initially in overseas markets if HAL had stuck with the character’s original name. Read More

Who Needs a Cherry on Top? Osaka Café Crowns its Parfaits with Cake

Tokyo’s restaurants may have more Michelin stars, but for many Japanese foodies, the real culinary action is in Osaka. Particularly if your tastes run more towards good honest grub than haute cuisine, Japan’s second largest city is the place to be.

The people of Osaka enjoy a good meal so much that they coined the phrase kuidaore, to eat until you collapse. But even with this image firmly entrenched in our minds, the city has found a new way to surprise us with its gastronomic decadence.

On a recent day out in Osaka, our reporter stopped by a café and ordered a truly hard-core parfait. It wasn’t that the parfait was so big, and no, it didn’t contain any shocking ingredients. What blew our minds about this parfait was its topping.

It was a slice of cake, and it was so big it wasn’t even trying to fit into the glass.

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New Dating Sim Follows Time-Tested Story Blueprint of Boy Meets Alpaca

Video games have made pretty steady progress into the cultural mainstream. Even people who aren’t gamers themselves can at least see the entertainment potential of a Mario title with its breezy fun, or the sweeping adventure of a Final Fantasy.

A genre many people have a harder time wrapping their heads around, though, is the dating simulator. Sure, driving games like Gran Turismo let us tune and race cars so expensive we can’t even talk the dealer into giving us a test drive in real life. And while Japan does have a royal family with princesses, the country’s lack of fire-breathing dragons means our chances of having to pick up sword and shield to go rescue them are slim, at best. But a game about going on dates? Couldn’t we just, like, ask someone out in real life?

Apparently some developers feel the same way, and have decided to spice up their dating sims with scenarios that take full advantage of video games’ unique style of escapism. Read More

Baby’s First Warmachine: the Perfect Mech for Your Tiny Supervillians!

As with most weeks in Japan, robots seem to be dominating the news, but this one’s much cuter and waaaay more alarming.

Sakakibara Kikai (or Sakakibara Machines), a well established manufacturing company in Gunma Prefecture, has released a video of their KID’S WALKER CYCLOPS out for a test drive. (No buildings were destroyed by errant missiles in the filming of this video.) Read More

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