MORE THAN half of Japanese babies can expect to live to 100. This prospect would have horrified Yukio Mishima, a writer who thought it so important to die young and handsome that he ritually disembowelled himself after staging a pantomime “coup” attempt in 1970.
TOKYO—In early September, the island nation of Japan was doing Japan things. One day, Typhoon Jebi roared ashore near Osaka and Kobe, breaking historical wind records.
Yoshitaka Sakurada, 68, is the deputy chief of the government’s cybersecurity strategy office and also the minister in charge of the Olympic and Paralympic Games that Tokyo will host in 2020. In parliament on Wednesday however, he admitted he doesn’t use computers.
Japan Airlines will introduce a new breathalyser system at overseas airports after one of its pilots was arrested at Heathrow Airport for being drunk. Katsutoshi Jitsukawa was arrested last month after a test showed he was over nine times the legal alcohol limit.
A Car Nerd's Guide To JapanAn insider look at car culture in Japan. As fun as it is doing these driving road adventures in Japan in fancy sports cars, I realize not everyone who’ll be visiting Japan will be able to drive an Aston Martin or a McLaren on the best roads this country has to offer.
Japan Airlines (JAL) pilots have failed breathalyser tests on 19 occasions since August last year, Japanese media reported, as the country’s flagship carrier reels from the recent arrest of a co-pilot who was almost 20 times over the alcohol limit.
The Asahi Shimbun reports that the cartoon short, entitled "Neck n' Neck," was part of the collection of an anime history researcher, Yasushi Watanabe, who bought it in Osaka while still a high school student some 70 years ago.
THE stake-out lasted a week, but it paid off in the end. The tireless police of Kagoshima, a sleepy city in the far south of the country, watched the unlocked car day and night. It was parked outside a supermarket, and contained a case of malt beer.
As a newlywed in the 1980s, a Japanese martial arts master named Ichiro expected only good things. He and his wife, Tomoko, lived among the cherry blossoms in Saitama, a prosperous city just outside of Tokyo. The couple had their first child, a boy named Tim.
TOKYO—Japan’s population is shrinking. For the first time since the government started keeping track more than a century ago, there were fewer than 1 million births last year, as the country’s population fell by more than 300,000 people.
Japanese people are, as a whole, very healthy: They have the second-highest life expectancies compared to any other country in the world (the U.S. comes in at number 43) and have an obesity rate of just 3.5 percent, which is one-tenth of America's 35 percent obesity rate.
TOKYO — Since Japan began counting its newborns more than a century ago, more than a million infants have been added to its population each year. No longer, in the latest discomforting milestone for a country facing a steep population decline.
Ai Aoyama is a sex and relationship counsellor who works out of her narrow three-storey home on a Tokyo back street. Her first name means "love" in Japanese, and is a keepsake from her earlier days as a professional dominatrix.
AT FIRST glance, Sora Tob Sakana is aimed squarely at the pre-teen market. After all, the pop group’s four members are 14- to 16-year-old girls who sport ponytails and cutesy frilly dresses and pump out bubblegum tunes accompanied by wobbly dancing.
TOKYO -- Japan seeks to lure foreign entrepreneurs with one-year startup visas, hoping to create competition for talent among localities to breathe new life into the economy. The program, spearheaded by the trade and justice ministries, will take a pilot project national as early as fiscal 2018.
Kotaku EastEast is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am. So, you’re going to Japan, huh? Fantastic. You might have some questions. Hopefully, I’ll have some answers.
Japan is the world's third-largest economy and the producer of many of the world's best products, from video games to cars. Yet most Americans don't know much about the country's rich history.
A few weeks ago, in a Kyoto tempura bar, I watched a lone chef, a man in late middle age, cooking behind a counter for his 11 customers. The set menu had 15 items on it.
A week ago, I saw Wes Anderson’s “Isle of Dogs,” or “Inu-ga-shima.” I saw it as someone who, upon hearing that name, is forcibly reminded of Oni-ga-shima, the isle of demons where Peach Boy, a hero of Japanese folklore, fights evil with his canine band of brothers.
Century-old American companies like General Electric and Ford appear ancient when viewed alongside modern upstarts like Google and Facebook. But there are a number of Japanese firms—some of which have been around for more than a millennium—that exist on another scale of time entirely.
The rain misted down and I had two choices: the road up the hill, or the one alongside the river. I stood next to some kind of cement plant, most of it hidden behind a corrugated metal fence dripping with moisture. My pack pulled down on my shoulders.
In I asked why history has unfolded differently over the last 13,000 years in Eurasia, in the Americas, in sub-Saharan Africa, and in Aboriginal Australia, with the result that within the last 500 years Europeans were the ones who conquered Native Americans and Aboriginal Australians and sub-Sahara
EVERY 20 years in the eastern coastal Japanese city of Ise, the shrine, one of the country’s most venerated, is knocked down and rebuilt. The ritual is believed to refresh spiritual bonds between the people and the gods. Demolishing houses has no such lofty objective.
Richard Lloyd Parry's book explores the damage to a community that had “suffered an exceptional tragedy”. When, on 11 March 2011, the ground began to shake, the Times journalist Richard Lloyd Parry had been living in Japan for 16 years.
When you consider that Japan squeezes five times our population into a country one twentieth of our size, there is not an extra inch of space for junk. No surprise that their hottest export right now is de-cluttering expert Marie Kondo, who can fold a T-shirt like nobody’s business.
When you are the first person to arrive in a meeting room, do you think of it as being empty or full? If you were raised in the West, a meeting room is made for people to meet. Therefore, if there are no people in that room, then of course it must be empty.
TOKYO — Japan’s population shrank by nearly a million during the last half-decade, official census figures confirmed on Friday, an unprecedented drop for a society not ravaged by war or other deadly crisis, and one that helps explain the country’s persistent economic woes.
Thanks to hip-hop and Hollywood, the United States is still the world’s leading cultural exporter. But, in recent years, American culture has increasingly been following a playbook made in Japan. Consider the fascination with “the Japanese art of decluttering.
Simply put, Japan is a fascinating destination. Here, you'll find a seamless blend of old traditions and new technology.
OSAKA, Japan — The country suffered a “lost decade,” and then another one, after its bubble burst some 25 years ago. To this day, despite Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s efforts to reinvigorate it, Japan’s economy remains in the doldrums.
When Hiroe Tanaka’s father died, he left behind something that would change her life: a recipe for fried meat on a stick. It was an act of love. His daughter adored the Japanese street food known as kushikatsu, and he’d spent endless hours working out how to make it just right.
Minimalism is taking over. Figures like Marie Kondo are becoming famous by spreading the gospel of throwing everything out and keeping just what you need. The movement is most prominent in Japan, where the influence of Zen Buddhism instills a desire for simplicity. For them, less is more.
I've updated this very popular article a little bit and pushed it up from the archives, since it is the season for cold noodles now. I'll also have a followup recipe soon for the perfect accompaniment to zaru soba. Originally published in May 2007.
Kotaku EastEast is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am. Ah, Japan! On a regular basis, I get emails from readers wanting to know about where they should go on their trip to Japan.
Get a free 30 day trial for Audible at http://audible.com/whativelearned or text ‘whativelearned’ to 500-500▲Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/WILearned▲Twitter: https://twitter.com/jeverettlearned▲Bitcoin: 1CuSEgDr5raV3XKoHL7W19QRoCkE3iHt1XSequel to my previous video! Will have more info h
VideoEmperor Akihito of Japan spoke publicly about the possibility of his retirement for the first time in a televised address on Monday.
Tokyo (東京, Tōkyō) is Japan's capital and the world's most populous metropolis. It is also one of Japan's 47 prefectures, consisting of 23 central city wards and multiple cities, towns and villages west of the city center. The Izu and Ogasawara Islands are also part of Tokyo.
Fumio Sasaki’s one-room Tokyo apartment is so stark friends liken it to an interrogation room. He owns three shirts, four pairs of trousers, four pairs of socks and a meagre scattering of various other items. Money isn’t the issue.
The red-roofed temple at the top of the hill closed about a decade ago, and now Yoshihiro Shibata can’t even remember its name, though the 54-year-old dairy farmer has lived in this picturesque village all his life.
What’s your reason for getting up in the morning? Just trying to answer such a big question might make you want to crawl back into bed. If it does, the Japanese concept of ikigai could help.
MIYAZAWA BEACH, Japan — The weather-beaten wooden fishing boat still harbored its secrets as it lodged in the sand, frigid waves beating against its side. All that remained were a few clues, strewn across the deck.
SHIMMERING spreads of raw fish sashimi, succulent beef from massaged cows, and, for a decade, the capital with the most Michelin-starred restaurants: few nations rival Japan for fine dining. Its fast-food scene has also thrived for centuries.
In case you missed it, rivers of ink have been spilt over Japan’s supposed aversion to litigation, often in juxtaposition to a United States portrayed as the ninth circle of litigiousness hell.
It’s a year to the day since I left Japan after exactly 10 years and 1 day of living there. It’s no secret that my departure was long overdue and that by the end I loathed so much about Japan and Japanese society that it was damaging my physical and emotional health continuing to live there.
We've put together some mind-blowing rules of courtesy from Japan. Breaking them would seriously offend your Japanese friends or colleagues.Subscribe to Bright Side : https://goo.gl/rQTJZz----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Our Social Media:Facebo
IN 2014, a local official in Aichi prefecture set out a daring proposal. Tomonaga Osada suggested that the authorities could distribute secretly punctured condoms to young married couples, who would then get to work boosting the birth rate.
Alana Semuels Many point to unromantic 20-somethings and women’s entry into the workforce, but an overlooked factor is the trouble young men have in finding steady, well-paid jobs. TOKYO—Japan’s population is shrinking.
It’s a common sight on Japanese mass transit: children troop through train cars, singly or in small groups, looking for seats. They wear knee socks, polished patent leather shoes, and plaid jumpers, with wide-brimmed hats fastened under the chin and train passes pinned to their backpacks.
Right now, I am visiting New York. There are not many vending machines here, like there are in Osaka, where I live. Surely, there must be a good reason for Japan having all those vending machines. Turns out, there are several. Stroll through the cities. Stroll through the countryside.
American companies say protectionist policies keep them out. The reality is more complicated. TOKYO, Japan—The last time Shujiro Urata wanted to buy a new car in Japan, his phone happened to ring. It was the local Toyota dealer on the phone, asking him if he was thinking about buying a new car.
I thought she was beautiful, although I never understood why she plucked her eyebrows off and penciled them on every morning an inch higher. She had been captain of her high school basketball team in Japan, and she ran circles around us kids on a dirt court in our small town in Upstate New York.
TAGAJO, Japan — Shusaku Tani is employed at the Sony plant here, but he doesn’t really work. For more than two years, he has come to a small room, taken a seat and then passed the time reading newspapers, browsing the Web and poring over engineering textbooks from his college days.
With Martin as my ever-amenable guide, over several nights I caught bands as diverse as the gushingly melodic Luminous Orange, the fascinating rhythms of Beat Satoshi, the mighty In The Sun (pitched as a “thundering disco-kraut instrumental band” - sold!), the kraut n hardcore of The Noup
Unless something happens to boost Japan's birth rate, its population will shrink by a third between now and 2060. One reason for the lack of babies is the emergence of a new breed of Japanese men, the otaku, who love manga, anime and computers - and sometimes show little interest in sex.
TOKYO — For nearly three decades, millions of Japanese have clamored for their every album, lined up with breathless anticipation for their concerts and gathered on Monday nights for their hit television show.
In the West, there's no end to stories and listicles and books telling you how to work more productively so you can spend more time with your family or doing the things you love. In Japan, there's not even a term for "work-life balance". What there is, though, is a word for "death by overwork.
Old film of Tokyo, Japan in 1913 and 1915. Set to a natural rate and added in sound for ambiance. Thanks to EYE for the amazing footage
Internet cafes have existed in Japan for over a decade, but in the mid 2000’s, customers began using these spaces as living quarters. Internet cafe refugees are mostly temporary employees; their salary too low to rent their own apartments. Watch the full series at: http://mediastorm.com/clie
There are some words out there that are brilliantly evocative and at the same time impossible to fully translate. Yiddish has the word shlimazl, which basically means a perpetually unlucky person. German has the word Backpfeifengesicht, which roughly means a face that is badly in need of a fist.
Trains in Japan are incredibly punctual. Being on time is counted down to the centiseconds. And unless there's an accident, Japanese trains simply are not late. In the above Discovery Channel Asia video, you can see some of the reasons why the country's rails run, well, like clockwork.
TOKYO — Yoshihiro Masui’s growling Ford hot-rod, its sides adorned with the Stars and Stripes, attests to his love of American cars — an unusual passion in Japan, where Toyota, Honda and other domestic brands rule the roads.
VideoPart mortuary, part hotel, Japanese corpse hotels allow grieving families to spend the night near the bodies of their loved ones as they make their final farewells. Here's a look inside of one.Published OnCreditCreditBen C.