Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday.
NEW USER REGISTRATION
Letters and numbers only; 5 to 50 characters. This cannot be changed later.
You will be sent an email to activate your account before you can log in.
Yes, I would like to receive news alerts from JapanToday
edojinAug. 30, 2014 - 04:12PM JST
Real freedom in Hong Kong took a hit when the colony was returned to China in 1997. Since then Beijing has been leaning toward full domination of Hong Kong ... and this pressure will get greater and greater until it achieves its goal. Hopefully, Hong Kongers will be able to resist complete Beijing control ... but the odds appear not to be in their favor.
Posted in: China warns against foreign meddling in Hong Kong
edojinAug. 30, 2014 - 04:05PM JST
When my wife and I travel around Japan in a rented car we sometimes stay at love hotels. Being on the unusual side of things, I guess, we are given first-class treatment by the love hotel staff. Perhaps it's because they rarely see married couples staying at their place. Anyway, the cost is cheap, we don't need reservations, the rooms are fantastic and the parking is free. Once in Tottori Prefecture we stayed at a love hotel in which our room overlooked the open sea. It was nice to hear the water lapping up against the waterfront just outside our window. It was much better than staying at a much more expensive hotel ... which wouldn't have put we low-paying customers right next to mother nature ... that is, the open sea.
So my advice is, when driving around Japan, or even touring by air or by train, stay at love hotels ... they are great (for the above reasons).
Posted in: Rush of foreign travelers good news for Kansai love hotels
edojinAug. 28, 2014 - 05:37PM JST
I liked playing pachinko in days gone by ... when the balls were released by a spring-powered lever. I had a knack of winning on these machines. I had won such things as a hair dryer, a necktie (which I still have) and other prizes. I never collected any money off of them. I enjoyed playing for prizes.
Enter the modern machines that use a knob-type of release to shoot the balls up the slot and into the main playing field. I can't win on these machines ... and as I hate to lose ... I have not played pachinko in years.
There is a pachinko parlor next to the place where I work, and if a "winner" is collecting his/her winnings in the little room next to the parlor, I always look at the computer in the window to see how much was won. I have seen a little old lady walk away with 47,000 yen in cash, another woman with a little over 40,000 yen and guys with anywhere from 5,000 to 30,000 yen. Such winnings don't tempt me to return to playing 'cause I know these people were probably lucky on that particular day ... and in the long haul probably they lost much, much more than what they won.
And yes ... those places are smoky ... and noisy. Never could stand the smoke ... and today probably couldn't stand all that noise either.
I also enjoyed playing "smart ball." Does anyone remember those games? Each machine had a pretty girl standing beside it. And I enoyed playing ... and sometimes ... winning on them. Perhaps some old "smart ball" games can still be seen in amusement centers ... and if so, I'm sure the pretty girls are long gone ... history ...
Posted in: What do you think of pachinko?
edojinAug. 24, 2014 - 05:48PM JST
Of the 10 cities in the list above, I'd choose Matsuyama and Hiroshima. In Matsuyama, there's a super sento near the JR station that I enjoy going to when I'm in the city. The Dogo Onsen sento is interesting, but too small and too expensive for me. Matsuyama is an interesting city to cycle around. Hiroshima is an interesting city with a nice public transportation system. Plus I enjoy eating fresh Hiroshima oysters ...
Recently passed through Fujisawa and found the train going into there and out too crowded for my liking when taking long trips (such as going to Tokyo from there ... ). Enoshima is nice, but it takes a lot of time and energy to get to and from there. Maybe it would be different living there ... but never experienced this, so don't know ...
Nishinomiya is in a nice area, but staying only in hotels when visiting the Kansai area, I prefer nearby Kobe and Osaka. Kobe has excellent food and Osaka has all kinds of exciting things and people in its favor.
But I find that home is the best of all ... which, for me, is downtown Tokyo. We have everything that is needed here ... plus I don't need an automobile as the public transportation system is great. And, at my age, Tokyo's hospital system must be the best in the world ...
Posted in: Magazine survey picks Japan’s 10 best places to live in
edojinAug. 24, 2014 - 05:01PM JST
After reading this article, check out the picture at left ... the one captioned "business is bad." This scene is what is being seen alll over Japan. Everything planned by Kuroda and Abe seems to be going haywire. As prices rise everywhere thanks to Abenomics, Kuroda keeps saying deflation is still out of control. Nothing makes sense anymore. Perhaps Japan needs some new economic experts to try to dig it out of the doldrums without hurting the average citizen any more.
Posted in: BOJ may ease policy for some time to beat deflation: Kuroda
edojinAug. 24, 2014 - 04:55PM JST
I have seen scenes like this throughout my travels in Japan, from southern Kyushu to northern Hokkaido. It is eerie to walk down such shuttered streets. I feel an emptiness as I stroll along these former busy shopping districts. Closer to home, I strolled down the Ginza streets in Odawara and Atami earlier this month ... and found emptiness everywhere. In Odawara quite a few establishments have been razed and there is nothing there but the bare earth plus a few empty parking lots that have risen among the ruins. In Atami I was faced with shuttered shop after shuttered shop.
Yes ... Abe keeps saying his Abenomics policy is working successfully ... but where? I haven't seen positive results anywhere. Does he realize what the average citizen is going through financially? When he forms his new Cabinet on Sept. 3 ... perhaps he had better start looking for a good economically minded person to take over the reins of government from he himself.
Posted in: Business is bad
edojinAug. 22, 2014 - 05:23PM JST
After all of this sexist publicity, will Abe still consider Hashimoto for a post in his new cabinet? If he does give her something ... well ... perhaps it will take the spotlight off his wacky Abenomics stuff for a while ...
Posted in: Takahashi denies being victim of sexual harassment
edojinJul. 27, 2014 - 04:32PM JST
Dr. Louis Guillotine had the right idea: use the guillotine. Although such a device was used before he suggested its use, the device got his name.
While looking up information on the guillotine, I came across this statement: "There is some evidence to suggest that the head retained some life for a moment after the head was severed and so the death might not be as quick as has been supposed."
Despite this and the messiness involved, if something must be used, the guillotine must be the quickest way to get rid of someone ....
Posted in: If a country has to have the death penalty, what is the most humane way of carrying it out?
edojinJul. 25, 2014 - 04:59PM JST
I guess it can be said that Javier Aguirre's Mexican players were "hungry" ... that is, most of them came from poor backgrounds and thus played extra hard to help their team win. Here in Japan Javier Aguirre will have to deal with players that are "spoiled," that is, they have earned a lot of money along the way and are not really "hungry" when it comes to trying to post a win.
So, Javier Aguirre will have a different kind of player to deal with here in Japan ... He will have to find a way to motivate them above and beyond what exists now ...
Posted in: Mexican Aguirre named as new coach of Japan
edojinJul. 25, 2014 - 04:52PM JST
I read somewhere that this might be another political trick thought up by the whiz kids at Jiminto (Liberal Democratic Party). A big election is approaching on Okinawa and Jiminto is hoping to garner enough votes for the victory. By moving the Ospreys off the island during the election period they might "convince" the voters to vote for them. After the election: who knows what will be done with the Ospreys. When the new base is ready in the Nago area, then the Ospreys will be moved there. Politics ... as played by Jiminto.
Posted in: Local people are wondering why Saga Airport is being picked and whether the Osprey is really a safe aircraft.
edojinJul. 22, 2014 - 05:11PM JST
Just like the captain of his doomed ship ... he was scared to stick around when the pressure builds up. Too bad he couldn't have faced the music ... in a courtroom and in a jail cell.
Posted in: Body of fugitive S Korea ferry tycoon found by police
edojinJul. 22, 2014 - 05:08PM JST
I have friends who live near the border in both Texas and Arizona. They say it is really scary down there ... and around their homes. They say border crossers could be nearby at any time ...
Posted in: Texas governor sending 1,000 National Guard troops to border
edojinJul. 06, 2014 - 05:21PM JST
Going over this article a day later, I discovered I mistakenly wrote an "elbow to the back". Actually, it was a knee. Neymar was kneed brutally.
Thankfully, he doesn't need surgery ...
Posted in: Neymar injury bombshell rocks Brazil
edojinJul. 06, 2014 - 05:18PM JST
Tessa-san ... the body is cremated to the point where only the bones remain. Then while they are still hot from the incinerator, the family stands around the remaining bones and puts them in an urn ... with the use of chopsticks. From my experience, I used one chopstick and a relative used the other one and together we picked up & placed a bone in the urn. This is done until everyone in the family has had a chance to do this. Beforehand, the skull cap has been set aside and when all the remaining bones and ashes have been put in the urn, the man in charge of the procedure puts the skull bones on the top of the pile. Then the urn is closed ... and taken back home where it remains for one month. Then the family gathers again at the cemetery and the urn is placed inside the family tomb (probably alongside other urns that have already been put there ages ago), from the front where the main stone has been removed. When everything is finished, the main stone is returned to its original place and sealed once again.
And Tessa-san, all the organs have been cremated. As I said above, only the bones remain.
The first time I experienced this I was in a huge crematorium. While the chief priest from the family cemetery was saying final words over the intact body, I heard a hideous scream from somewhere in the crematorium. Sent chills up & down my spine. As I looked around, I could see numerous other bodies being prepped for cremation or being wheeled out of the oven with only the burned bones remaining. A chilling scene ...
Posted in: A dying business: family graves in Japan
edojinJul. 05, 2014 - 04:59PM JST
Neymar has been a target for hits throughout the tournament. He was playing the game with Germany with leg injuries ... and watching the vital play in the 88th minute in today's game on TV, he really got hit hard in the back. Looks like Zuniga not only ran into Neymar from the back, but that elbpw blow seemed to have had a little extra oomph on it.
It's tough being a talented star in this game as there are guys who seem to want to slow them down or take them out completely no matter what.
Anyway ... so far it's been an exciting tournament ... and expect to see more top-quality football (soccer) ahead ...
edojinJun. 21, 2014 - 04:47PM JST
More goals might be the result of the new Adidas ball that is being used in Brazil for the first time. It is being billed as a high-tech wonder. The ball is made of a six-panel design that makes it better to kick. According to a recent AFP-Jiji story, "the evolutionary panel shape creates flight speed and efficiency." Thus, the balls go faster and more accurately toward the goal. The thing is, the players gotta use their own footsies and heads to send the ball that way ... something the Japanese team can't seem to do.
When I played soccer we used an old-fashioned leather ball that seemed clumsy when compared to the high-tech ones that are now in use. And Adidas has upped that level even more in the ongoing World Cup. Therefore, I expect to see even more goals in the remaining games.
Posted in: Why so many goals at the World Cup?
edojinJun. 20, 2014 - 12:45PM JST
So far, mostly British sports have been mentioned above. From the viewpoint of an American, I like watching baseball, American football, basketball, high-speed automobile races plus numerous other sports. Being from a small town, I played or was involved (such as in auto racing) in most team sports in my younger days so now enjoy watching all of them no matter what.
I've never been to a cricket match ... and often have wondered how anyone can sit through something like a three-day match. My Aussie friends tell me there is a lot of beer consumed during such cricket events ... saying something like the sport here involves downing the suds as the game slowly proceeds.
I've only done a bit of wrestling ... but at the higher level I do enjoy watching professional wrestling ... I know the game is for "entertainment" purposes but guess I like being "entertained" by their injury-defying feats and weird antics.
Up in Canada the Canuks are crazy about ice hockey ... which, I, too, enjoy watching (I can't skate worth a hoot, though) ...
Chess is considered a sport ... but I prefer playing it vs. the computer rather than watching it.
Posted in: What for you is the most exciting sport to watch, when it is played well, and what is the most boring?
edojinJun. 17, 2014 - 04:21PM JST
I was informed prior to this that Ishihara had blundered in his inept handling of the nuclear crisis at Fukushima. If he were in any other administration he would be gone by now. Don't know why Prime Minister Abe keeps him. But then, Abe himself wants to keep his screwed-up administration intact as he adds to his 500-plus days of keeping the same administration in place. Unbelievable how the Abe crew can run amok in this country ... and get away with it ...
edojinJun. 14, 2014 - 03:05PM JST
Baseball has such replays available ... and the action still ends up in controversial calls on some plays ...
I've always enjoyed booing the referee/umpire and always will ... high tech technology or not.
Posted in: Do you think goal-line technology and video replays can help avoid controversial referee decisions in sports?
edojinJun. 10, 2014 - 05:52PM JST
Should be an interesting addition to the game ... especially at such a high level of play.
Hope we get to see at least one close goal-line call ... and see how the new technical addition works in the final decision.
Posted in: Goal-line technology to be used for first time at World Cup
Sep. 02, 2014 - 06:03PM JST
Posted in: Sailor's suicide caused by bullying, MSDF admits
Sep. 02, 2014 - 06:00PM JST
Is it that time of year again already?
Posted in: Japan to seek return of all its citizens held by North Korea
Sep. 02, 2014 - 05:52PM JST
Will they release adult movies with this technology? Otherwise it is useless. Nothing else is touch…
Posted in: Japanese firm showcases 'touchable' 3D technology
I've always kept a couple of months worth of toilet paper. Also, extra water, food, a…
Posted in: Do you have enough toilet paper?
Sep. 02, 2014 - 05:50PM JST
i am indian and i love japan after india and israel.because these two countries have been…
Posted in: Japan, India to step up security, economic cooperation