In 2013, Mr. One Million, Hyakumansan, upset the residents of Ishikawa prefecture, whom he was supposed to represent, by being too ugly. Overdesigned. Not cute enough. Nearly a decade later, he’s still standing as the mascot of Ishikawa but what was all that hullabaloo about? Is he really as messy as they said he was? […]
Read More The Curious Case of Hyakumansan
Kanazawa, aside from being a historical wonderland to rival Kyoto, is also the home of the gold leaf industry in Japan. Take a walk with me through a golden garden, won’t you?
Read More Gold Leaf of Kanazawa
You thought I was done talking about daruma? Do you even know me? Have you met me? I don’t think the discussion about daruma will ever end, to be honest. This one isn’t directly daruma (DD), but it is daruma-adjacent (DA). Let’s journey to Fukushima and investigate the balance boys and girls known as Okiagari […]
Read More Weeble Wobble, Roly Poly, Okiagari Koboshi
There’s been an epic struggle down in Osaka concerning convenience store chain Seven-Eleven and a franchisee, Mitoshi Matsumoto. It’s a delicious tale of corporate greed, concerned citizens, and flying kicks to stationary vehicles. It also sheds a small bit of light on the oftentimes poor working conditions that many Japanese workers face.
Read More Seven Eleven versus Mitoshi Matsumoto
It’s a bold claim, but what happened here completely rewrote the trajectory of the warrior class in Japan and Japanese society as a whole. Let’s explore its fabled history together!
Read More Why is Aizuwakamatsu Known as The Samurai City?
Hideyo Noguchi is one of the scientific masters of Japan, and his birthday is November 9th! His achievements were so important and revered in Japan that he adorns the 1000 yen bill (although, that will change in the future). He was born in Inawashiro, Fukushima, and both in his hometown and nearby Aizuwakamatsu are some […]
Read More Hideyo Noguchi Sites in Fukushima
Yes, you heard that correctly. This one was brought to my attention after watching a lore video about the popular game Elden Ring. This lead me down a series of twists and turns I was not anticipating, and neither will you!
Read More The Soul in Your Butt, According to Japanese Legend
A whole land dedicated to Daruma? Yes, yes there is! Of course, I had to go out to Shirakawa in Fukushima to check out this newly built establishment!
Read More Daruma Land
Most people know about Gion, the famous Geisha district in Kyoto, but are there any others out there? Well, there’s a hidden gem of a city, Kanazawa, that has not one, not two, but three surviving Geisha districts! We went to the two larger ones, the West and East Tea Districts, to check out the […]
Read More Higashi Chaya and Nishi Chaya Geisha Districts of Kanazawa
If you come to Japan, or if you’ve watched any school-based anime, you probably know what I’m getting at here: There are a few sights and sounds in Japan that they took directly from the English. From sailor uniforms to a familiar school jingle, Japan owes a lot of its iconic school culture to England.
Read More Why Are Japanese Schools So… English?