In Japan, Women Think Mark Zuckerberg Is A Hamburger [The Zuckerburger]

Facebook isn’t all that popular in Japan (Mixi is currently king there), but it doesn’t meant that people don’t know about it. After all, the movie “The Social Network” came out in Japan, and I’m sure that Facebook hits the news every once in a while. But what about Facebook’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg? Apparently in a recent poll, Japanese women just thought he was a hamburger (for good reason, too!). [Read more…]

yoroshiku onegaishimasu

What Does Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu Mean?

For all you Japanese language learning 生徒 out there, this isn’t your normal “found on a Q&A site ‘What does yoroshiku onegaishimasu mean'” kind of post. No. This is the ultimate ‘What does Yoroshiku Onegaishimasu mean?’ kind of post. And by “ultimate” I mean “holy crap, look at that kanji!” [Read more…]


Everything You Need To Know About Japan’s Sumo Match-Fixing Scandal

I’m guessing most of you know what Sumo is. Along with karate, ninjas, and Hello Kitty, Sumo is about as Japanese as it gets. Over the last week or two, there’s been a ton of hub-bub about a big, nasty Sumo-related scandal. So what in the world (er… in Japan) is going on here? [Read more…]


Japan Finally Gets Its Second Banana Vending Machine. Banana Peel Related Injuries Double Overnight

Ever since I found out Japan got its first banana vending machine, I’ve been chomping at the bit banana for a conveniently placed second banana vending machine, preferably someplace I didn’t have to fly an airplane to get to.

Actually, I don’t care that much, but I did think it was pretty sweet that Japan has banana vending machines (two, now) allowing anyone to get a banana whenever the please… as long as they live near one of the two banana vending machines in existence. [Read more…]


The Uniqlo Tilt-Shift Miniaturization Calendar [Saturday Timewaster]

Erin (who writes something on Tofugu like once a year now, and has a new blog over at SputnikSweetie.com) showed me this calendar. After looking at this calendar for four straight days, I exclaimed:

“Omg, this will be an awesome ‘Saturday Timewaster’ for Tofugu!”

“But what day is Saturday?? Where AM I?”

“Thank God I have this calendar to tell me.”

This is the most addicting, time wasting calendar I’ve ever seen. Thanks Uniqlo (who also told us what women think about their bras). [Read more…]


How To Use “Cramming” To Study Japanese Way More Effectively

I wasn’t particularly good at studying when I was in school, and to make up for this I got really good at cramming. In case you aren’t familiar with the term, the definition of cramming is:

To study hastily for an impending examination

That being said, cramming sucks, and nobody should do it… that is, unless you do it right. I’ve been experimenting with something over the last couple weeks, and I think I’ve come up with a pretty effective study technique that uses cramming. [Read more…]


Google Japanese IME For Better Typing In Japanese

Last week, @andoryuu3 on Twitter told me about Google IME. Since then, I’ve been trying it out to see if it’s worth writing about. Obviously it is (if you haven’t figured that out already), so I’ve written up a little article talking about why Google IME is actually pretty awesome. The differences are pretty subtle, but over the long term Google IME is a great way to type out your Japanese. [Read more…]


Do’h. Smart.fm Is Closing Down And Going Paid (And Stealing All Your Content, Too)

Do’h. Smart.fm is closing down, and taking your content with it (holy crap, I made a lot for them, including a good amount of semi-pro audio, which I paid someone for). Well, they’re only kinda-sorta closing down. The parent company, Cerego is ending the Smart.fm service and rebranding it as “iKnow” (wait… hasn’t this happened before… like twice?) and slapping a monthly fee on there. [Read more…]


Are These The Oldest Photos Of Japan?

I’ve seen some old pictures of Japan… but these are really old. We’re talking like 1860-1861 here. I didn’t know cameras existed at this time (though apparently the first exposure ever was taken in 1827, around 30 years before these pictures were taken). Pictures taken at this time were probably using the daguerreotype method, which, according to Wikipedia, involved coating a copper plate in silver, then treating it with iodine to make it sensitive to light (then you’d have to develop it with mercury vapor and fix it with some strong salt). Either way, it doesn’t sound easy. Also, getting into Japan in 1860 wasn’t all that easy either. The Shogun didn’t like foreigners walking around all that much… [Read more…]


Practicing Japanese In Your Dreams. Can It Work?

For the last few weeks I’ve been pretty fascinated by the idea of “lucid dreaming.” Basically, this is the ability to know when you’re dreaming, then being able to take control of it to do whatever you want. Of course, after being able to fly and performing dentristry on monkeys, my thoughts drifted to studying Japanese… in my dreams. The more I thought about this, the more I thought it could be possible. So, over the next two or three months, I’m going to run an experiment on myself. I’m going to find out if it’s possible to study Japanese in your sleep and then share how I did it (or how I failed at it) with all of you. I think it’s more than possible, though. Here’s why: [Read more…]


Christmas In Japan Is Finger Lickin’ Good (KFC Christmas)

There’s a pretty decent chance that if you’re Japanese, you’re about to head off to pick up your (possibly reserved) Christmas Chicken from KFC… you know, because that’s how the rest of the world celebrates Christmas. Who knew The Colonel’s secret recipe was so… tricky! [Read more…]