1244 posts tagged with Japan.
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Supper Mario Broth

Supper Mario Broth is a wonderfully obsessive blog devoted to all sorts of Super Mario Brothers minutia. Really, you are not prepared for this. Things like.... [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Apr 18, 2016 - 18 comments

Can you earthquake proof a city?

Four experts talked to the BBC World Service Inquiry programme, which was published on March 24th, about how to make earthquake-prone cities safer. More people may be asking that question in the wake of the major earthquake that struck earlier today, April 16, in Ecuador and the twin earthquakes that hit Japan on April 15 and April 16. US residents have reason to worry as well. [more inside]
posted by Bella Donna on Apr 16, 2016 - 15 comments

Dave Spector, Gaijin Tarento: Big in Japan, unknown in the US

Tarento, a Japanese rendering (gairaigo) of the English word "talent," or actors, though often is used to refer to actors who take part in more comedic panel shows. Gaijin tarento are "foreign talent," non-Japanese actors who speak Japanese and often represent a stereotyped view of their given nationalities. One of the best-known and longest operating gaijin tarento is David Spector, a relative unknown in his native Chicago, but a household name in Japan (NYT, 2014). The strange cult of the Gaijin Tarento (YT, 5:41) [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 10, 2016 - 30 comments

The language of flowers, spoken in forms around the world

In the Victorian Era, "the language of flowers" (floriography) was all the rage. According to The Smithsonian Gardens History in Bloom summary (and activities sheets) for The Language of Flowers (PDF), "Nearly all Victorian homes would own at least one of the guide books dedicated to the ‘language of flowers.’ The authors of these guidebooks used visual and verbal analogies, religious and literary sources, folkloric connections, and botanical attributes to derive the various associations for the flowers." But where did it come from? (Google books preview) Istanbul in the Tulip Age (PDF, first chapter of Crime and Punishment in Istanbul: 1700-1800), and Turkish love-letters and harems ... somewhat. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Apr 1, 2016 - 8 comments

Renting A Friend In Tokyo

When you’re alone in Tokyo and you need someone to talk to, do as the locals do: Rent a friend.
posted by veedubya on Mar 26, 2016 - 42 comments

I'm Cartooning It (pada-pa-pa-pa)

As part of its job recruitment program, McDonalds in Japan have released a (pretty adorable) anime ad. (More character info here though it's all in Japanese.) People are lovin' it - and there's a fandom already.
posted by divabat on Mar 21, 2016 - 29 comments

Love black? A suriken whiz? Super silent sneakery skills? Nunchuk this

Ninjas, apply here. Samurai, your deadline is on 31st March.
posted by infini on Mar 16, 2016 - 17 comments

“Of course, there's still a nuclear site with three damaged reactors.”

Five Years Later, Cutting Through the Fukushima Myths by Andrew Karam [Popular Mechanics] Radiation expert Andrew Karam, who covered the disaster for Popular Mechanics in 2011 and later traveled to study the site, explains everything you need to know about Fukushima's legacy and danger five years later. [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Mar 14, 2016 - 57 comments

"You can do it! You can do it! You can do it!"

Storm of excitement to the hard work of kindergarten children jump 10-stage of Tears (SLYT)
posted by andoatnp on Mar 9, 2016 - 22 comments

Little Labors

The Only Thing I Envy Men is an essay about women writers by Rivka Galchen, taken from her book Little Labors. The book focuses partly on writing by Japanese women, especially the 11th Century writers Sei Shonagon and Murasaki Shikibu, authors of The Pillow Book and Tale of Genji respectively. The latter has recently been retranslated, and was the subject of a lengthy article in the New Yorker by Ian Buruma.
posted by Kattullus on Mar 7, 2016 - 10 comments

But what *is* Kawaii?

Kawaii but not as you know it. (SL slightly pretentious advertisement)
posted by Megami on Mar 5, 2016 - 18 comments

A steaming bowl of life

Ramen, despite its reputation as a cheap fast food, is a complex pillar of modern Japanese society, one loaded with political, cultural and culinary importance that stretches far beyond the circumference of the bowl.
Dive in with one of Japan's top ramen bloggers.
posted by infini on Feb 24, 2016 - 86 comments

What Comes After Neo-Tokyo?

Whatever happened to the animators who worked on Akira? (NSFW) Find out with over 30 minutes of clips that start with a scene from 1988's masterpiece of Japanese animation, Akira, and follow each animator's career across the decades. [more inside]
posted by GameDesignerBen on Feb 24, 2016 - 17 comments

The Many Uses of Charcoal

It's not just for burning sausages.
posted by lucidium on Feb 21, 2016 - 26 comments

Japan's Disposable Workers

Net cafe refugees | Dumping ground | Overworked to suicide. A three-part documentary based on Shiho Fukada's portrait series, Japan's Disposable Workers. Previously. [more inside]
posted by nickyskye on Feb 18, 2016 - 8 comments

The Woman Who Makes Prosthetic Pinkies for Ex-Yakuza Members

When “Mike” spotted a newspaper advert for a clinic making prosthetic fingers in the 90s, he thought it was a scam. But the ex-yakuza member had booked himself a consultation within the hour. For almost a decade, a stumpy pinkie on his left hand had marked out his previous allegiance to the criminal world, preventing him from leading a normal life. A fake little finger, he thought, sounded outlandish, but it was worth a shot. It might allow him to disguise his past—and help shield against Japanese society’s prejudiced view of ex-yakuza members in search of redemption. [more inside]
posted by ChuraChura on Feb 9, 2016 - 16 comments

L.A. Dreamers

Five Japanese girls meet in Los Angeles. They are far from home but they have same goal, chase the dream of becoming hip hop dancers. [SLVimeo]
posted by MoonOrb on Feb 8, 2016 - 4 comments

history of japan (in 9 minutes)

history of japan in 9 minutes by bill wurtz
posted by gen on Feb 2, 2016 - 41 comments

On this spot

On This Spot is a history blog that focusses on then and now photography, comparing historical and contemporary photographs of the same locations. Locations include cities and battlefields in the UK, Germany, France, Japan and Canada.
posted by Dim Siawns on Jan 29, 2016 - 8 comments

Such a good doge

If you like Shiba Inus, and you like slow-paced videos, you will love this hour-long video of a doge on a leisurely walk through a Japanese village. They visit a temple, stop for some noodles, take some photos, and create some paw print art. No dialogue, only music. No Japanese knowledge required. [more inside]
posted by desjardins on Jan 24, 2016 - 28 comments

Millions of sushi, sushi for me.

On one hand, you have the Jiro-sans of the world. On the other...
posted by theappleonatree on Jan 24, 2016 - 35 comments

N. Korea does have a long history of exaggerating its military prowess.

North Korea says it just tested a hydrogen bomb. Here's what we know. [Vox]
According to top experts, it's very plausible this was a test. "I think it is *probably* a test," Jeffrey Lewis, the director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the Monterey Institute of International Studies, tweeted. "DPRK [Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the formal name of North Korea] event epicenter close to test site and on 1/2 hour." Generally, earthquakes don't just happen on exactly the half hour.
[more inside] posted by Fizz on Jan 6, 2016 - 82 comments

A Moss Girl’s Guide to Japanese Moss Viewing

Since I first discovered moss ten years ago, the joys of examining moss in its natural habitat and marveling at the sporey, crazy geometries on the other end of my magnifying glass has become one of my greatest pleasures in my life. And I’m not alone: a growing number of young Japanese women have taken up moss-viewing, calling themselves “moss girls” and holding moss viewing parties all over Japan. More recently, the trend has spread to people of all ages and sexes, who are discovering new venues all over the country where moss enthusiasts can gather to share their passion. [more inside]
posted by dmit on Jan 6, 2016 - 37 comments

"The food is authentic in spirit."

"It was Asian enough for my immigrant parents and American enough for my sister and me." In the PBS feature documentary, Off The Menu, filmmaker Grace Lee traverses the US into the kitchens, factories, temples and farm of Asian Pacific America that explores how our relationship to food reflects our evolving communities. Food Republic spoke with Jonathan Wu and Wilson Tang, whose NYC restaurant, Fung Tu, is featured in the film.
posted by Room 641-A on Dec 31, 2015 - 4 comments

Supreme Skills! Miracle Tops: May They Spin Forever!

Supreme Skills is a show on the NHK, presented here dubbed well into English, in which two groups of Japanese engineers who compete to meet the challenge of exceptionally strict production standards according to their talents and natural biases. Eight additional shows are linked inside.
In Supreme Skills! Miracle Tops: May They Spin Forever! [24:47] A group of young satellite engineers and a group of wizened craftsmen compete to produce a top that will spin the longest in an understated drama of rapidly rotating dreams. It showcases the design focuses and production process of both teams as well as the engineering and physics concepts they demonstrate supreme mastery over as we watch the tops spin and the engineers grow increasingly nervous.
[more inside] posted by Blasdelb on Dec 29, 2015 - 36 comments

"This squid was not damaged and looked lively . . ."

Architeuthis Dux: Giant Squid observed in Toyama Bay, Japan. [SLYT] The story from CNN. This one was 12 feet long; they can grow to 60 feet. [more inside]
posted by spitbull on Dec 28, 2015 - 67 comments

Yakitate!! Japan, an informative manga/anime series about bread baking

From the beginning of the first episode, you can see that Yakitate!! Japan is a silly show about bread. The title, which translates to Freshly Baked!! Ja-pan, alone is enough to warn you that it's full of puns ("pan" is Japanese for bread). If you're inspired by the show or manga, here are a ton of recipes, beyond the rice cooker bread recipe from the show, which was converted to US units for the English manga translation. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Dec 28, 2015 - 23 comments

Shin Kubota and The Jellyfish of Immortality

Vice Motherboard on the immortal jellyfish and Shin Kabota, the man who sings their praise. Shin Kubota music video.
posted by Foci for Analysis on Dec 26, 2015 - 3 comments

Money is extracted from people in love & happy people support capitalism

Since 2006, a group of lonely single men in Japan calling itself Kakumeiteki Hi-mote Domei (“Revolutionary Losers’ League”) has been protesting against Christmas, arguing that the holiday, as practiced in Japan, marginalises the uncoupled. [more inside]
posted by acb on Dec 21, 2015 - 42 comments

Moe desu

This stressful, ongoing debate fuels the seeming paradox of an “endearing” military force. In Japan, where indirect communication is highly valued, cute illustrations have long played the role of tension-breakers and mediators in situations of conflict. Thus kawaii mascots, whether miniskirted girls or bunny-rabbit decoy launchers, are both a reflection of pop-cultural trends and a way to defuse the very touchy issues surrounding the military’s undeniable presence.
posted by MartinWisse on Dec 15, 2015 - 16 comments

Classic Art with a Modern Twist

2015 marks the 400th anniversary of the famous Rinpa School painting of the Wind God and Thunder God (Fujin-Raijin-zu). This has led a modern painter of the Rinpa School to add his own twists on the iconic painting, first in a collaboration with Nintendo to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Super Mario Bros. and, shortly thereafter, to celebrate the new Star Wars movie's release. In addition to these, the artist, Yamamoto Taro, has quite a history of producing traditionally-styled Japanese paintings with a modern sensibility and a touch of humor.
posted by DoctorFedora on Dec 7, 2015 - 4 comments

Please look forward when walking

Samurai Smartphone Parade
posted by infini on Dec 2, 2015 - 7 comments

Style Out There

Asha Leo of Refinery29 travels around the world to learn about international fashion subcultures and the way fashion affects society worldwide. So far she's met Gothic (and other) Lolitas in Amsterdam, Moroccan expat culture, hijra in India, Hasidic designers in Brooklyn, Korean matchy-matchy fashion for couples, and the highly colorful world of Japanese decora.
posted by divabat on Nov 30, 2015 - 6 comments

In a beautiful pea-green boat

Thankful for Friendship: the story of Marimo the cat and Fuku the owl
posted by infini on Nov 26, 2015 - 8 comments

Art of Sakuga

The term sakuga (作画) refers to a series of well-drawn movements in animation found in both western and Japanese animated shows. [more inside]
posted by chrono_rabbit on Nov 26, 2015 - 9 comments

Leave no ball behind.

"Once upon a time, in a tiny home, lived three ball brothers: Biita, Biisuke, and Biigoro. The three lived happily together but one day.... What?! Two of the brothers were taken!"

And so begins Biisuke Ball's Big Adventure, where one little ball braves a Rube Goldberg machine and larger-than-life enemies to rescue his ball brothers and bring them home. (Turn on closed captioning for subtitles in English.) [SLYT]
posted by Room 641-A on Nov 22, 2015 - 8 comments

Fighting crime is just my hobby

Onepunch-man (ワンパンマン) a comedy/superhero webcomic created by ONE in 2009 hosted on his site which quickly became a viral hit over the years. It features the adventures of Saitama (サイタマ), an unlicensed hero, and his disciple Genos (ジェノス) as they protect the citizens in Z-city from a variety of villains and monsters. However, after all his dedication to training to become a serious hero he feels empty as everything is too easily resolved with one punch. [more inside]
posted by chrono_rabbit on Nov 15, 2015 - 11 comments

OkonomiYumi!

How a Guatemalan chef became the owner of an okonomiyaki restaurant in Hiroshima. [more inside]
posted by bigZLiLk on Nov 7, 2015 - 27 comments

“A mix of Japanese pop songs, most of them with a synth funk backbone”

Jen Monroe and Brian Sweeny, the curators of the Listen To This! album blog, have collaborated with Self-Titled Magazine on an eclectic mix of Japanese synth pop that will go perfectly with your personal end-of-Summer / Fall weather: OMG JAPAN (Track list and liner notes)
posted by Going To Maine on Oct 25, 2015 - 6 comments

Crickets chirp around the door

Four seasons? Is that all you got? Japan has 72 seasons.
posted by Gotanda on Oct 21, 2015 - 31 comments

Insert your own "Alien Ant Farm" joke here.

A traditional Japanese cover of "Smooth Criminal", led by flautist Yoshimi Tsujimoto.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI on Oct 21, 2015 - 22 comments

Covered in lube and sliding about — it’s a fantastic way to make friends

The "Lube Olympics" makes slippery bid to rival 2020 Tokyo Games — featuring popular Greece sports like group sumo, tug-of-war, giant balls relay, sliding underneath the sheets and so much more
posted by a lungful of dragon on Oct 11, 2015 - 13 comments

Unlockdown Nation

Why are little kids in Japan so independent? - 'If we had a nonviolent society, kids could walk around on their own, unafraid, like they do in Japan'. (via)
posted by kliuless on Oct 3, 2015 - 83 comments

Hardcore Gaming 101 video articles

Here is the new series of video articles started by the ultra-knowledgeable folks at Hardcore Gaming 101. The first two are up, the beginning of series on Pre-Super Mario platform games and on the early history of JRPGs. Related is the video adjunct to the Game Club 199X Podcast, with over 50 videos. (Previously.)
posted by JHarris on Sep 29, 2015 - 23 comments

Japanese Government Asks Universities to Close Social Science Faculties

Short on time? Here are the highlights: Japan’s Minister of Education has asked all national universities to close their social sciences and humanities departments. 26 universities have so far confirmed plans to close affected faculties or convert them to "areas that better meet society’s needs" [more inside]
posted by Shouraku on Sep 29, 2015 - 138 comments

Woodblock GIFs

Japanese woodblock prints re-imagined as animated GIFs. (via Giant Cypress)
posted by jedicus on Sep 21, 2015 - 13 comments

Fukushima.

This photographic documentary is not intended to tell the story of the events surrounding the disaster yet again. [...] It is not earthquakes or tsunami that are to blame for the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station, but humans. [...] As in the Chernobyl case, it was a human, not technology, that was mainly responsible for the disaster.
posted by slater on Sep 21, 2015 - 5 comments

"All Japanese young women want kogao."

An American living in Japan, Ellen Freeman confronts her own body issues upon learning that her 'small face' fits an ideal of beauty she wasn't even aware of.
posted by buriednexttoyou on Sep 19, 2015 - 42 comments

The love that dare not speak its name

Cat & Snail [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine on Sep 18, 2015 - 23 comments

Drink your single malt and put your helmet on...

In 2011, Ardbeg, a prominent Scotch whisky distiller, sent vials of its whisky to the International Space Station to mature. Those vials have been returned to Earth and subjected to taste tests alongside samples of the same whisky matured at Ardbeg's distillery. [more inside]
posted by mandolin conspiracy on Sep 9, 2015 - 40 comments

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