Thursday, February 26, 2009

Beat Crusaders video

I'm really loving this video for the song Phantom Planet that I found on Jean Snow's blog.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

'Oldest hotel in the world'

This in via Kirainet, Houshi hot springs hotel in Hokuriku has a history that dates back to the year 718 (how can they be so precise?). It's worth taking a peep at their website for a more detailed history. Ah, I'm yearning for a dip in a hot spring myself as I sit here in my freezing Tokyo apartment.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tokoton ramen

Tokoton Ramen in Ningyocho is so far the best ramen I've ever eaten. The soup is really rich and creamy and they give you a lovely runny egg if you ask for it with your normal ramen (you have to pay extra). Normal ramen costs 600 yen, other good ones to check out are stamina ramen which is full of garlic and tako ramen which has huge fatty chunks of pork on top (700 yen). To find it click here on diddlefinger. Address: Tokyo, Chuo-ku, Ningyocho 2-6-2 Tel: 03 5641 6036

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Soundproof room

This story from Trends in Japan. For people who want to belt out karaoke classics or rawwwk out at home Yamaha have brought out the second model of My Room, a teeny soundproof room that fits inside your home. People are extremely courteous to neighbours about noise in Japan and musicians often practise by hiring studio time or sitting by the nearest river. The first option is really pricey and the second can be a bit chilly at this time of year. Mind you, My Room is not cheap at 1,039,500 yen and definitely not an option for claustrophobics.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Tell me a story Jackanory

Tokyo Walker reports that a growing number of young people are starting to attend rakugo nights. Rakugo is an old form of storytelling where the teller tells a long and complicated story using only a fan and a piece of cloth as props. The entire time he sits in the seiza or kneeling position, ouch! I guess in these troubled times it's comforting to have someone tell you a bedtime story.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Valentines choco

Valentine's day in Japan usually involves women giving men chocolate but this year the choco companies have introduced a twist: reverse chocolates. The gimmick is that the lettering on the box is in reverse indicating that men can give women choices this year. Nice idea from marketing companies. Men are supposed to give women chocs on white day next month but usually don't bother. Other kinds of choco featured are choco ramen and choco facial. Via Japan Probe

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sake with a sugared pill

Trends in Japan blog report that a new flavoured sake will be in stores from Feb 24. Made to appeal to the majority of young people who don't drink nihonshu, it will come with a funky bottle flavored in lime. Personally I like nihonshu and want to try more, masking the taste seems a shame.