People

Mr. Heavy Metal: An Interview with Marty Friedman

Imagination time: You're one of the world's greatest guitar players and a pioneer of the metal genre. You've had an illustrious career in the U.S. and it shows no signs of stopping. You're at the top of the world! Where do … [Read more...]

HELP! I Don’t Know How To ALT!

Summer is almost here, bringing with it sweltering heat, limited edition Crunky ice cream bars, and a whole new flock of ALTs (Assistant Language Teachers). Maybe your dream of coming to Japan is finally coming true. Soon … [Read more...]

The Empire Built On Egg Shells: An Interview With TanKuma Owner Gensho Nishigaki

What an eggy week it has been! I wrote a travel review of an Egg Vending Machine and a raw-egg-on-rice (tamago-kake-gohan) restaurant called Tankuma. I also wrote simply about the famous Japanese dish tamago kake gohan. I … [Read more...]

Japanese Food Models, Yesterday And Today

If you’ve ever visited Japan and had to order food without benefit of being able to read Japanese, there’s one thing that’s a lifesaver: those plastic food replicas lined up in the windows of many restaurants. With their … [Read more...]

How To Speak Beautiful Japanese: An Interview With Yomiuri TV Announcer Naomi Uemura

I know most everybody here loves to watch Japanese television. That’s why I thought it would be interesting to interview somebody who was actually on Japanese TV. I was surprised when I heard back from Yomiuri TV’s 25 year … [Read more...]

Japan’s Epic History Of Discrimination Against The Mustache

If you ever go to Japan, you’ll come to realize that almost all men, especially salarymen, don’t have mustaches (or facial hair for that matter). Although shaving your mustache can sometimes cause trouble (watch Koichi’s … [Read more...]

Hiroshi Yamauchi: The Very Non-Whimsical Willy Wonka Of Nintendo

In the west, we like our media kingpins to be creative. And not just creative on a few things in their lives, but visionary geniuses we can laud as people worth worshiping. Walt Disney and Jim Henson are two great … [Read more...]

Tanaka Hisashige: Father of Toshiba, Edison of Japan

Tanaka Hisashige is one of Japan's most prolific inventors. Creating everything from mechanical dolls to weapons of destruction, this guy did it all. He even started the company that later became known as Toshiba. Yeah, … [Read more...]

What Japanese Kids Want To Be When They Grow Up (And What They End Up Becoming)

Children. So young! So full of promise! The world is their oyster and they haven't been crushed by life's merciless sky fist... at least not yet. Still though, it's fun to hear a child's hopes and dreams before they turn … [Read more...]

Rachel’s Top 10 J-Pop Artists

In seventh grade I had my half-Japanese friend burn me a CD full of her favorite Japanese music. That CD, full of Japanese boy bands, ballads, technopop, and anime themes, was my first introduction to J-Pop. That music was … [Read more...]