Japan recycles EVERYTHING! 1001 ways to put out the trash

I. Reduce Recycling has interested me ever since it was introduced to my hometown dump in the mind 1980s. The idea that waste can be reused is as intuitively appealing as a perpetual motion machine. Once I learned about recycling, the idea of NOT recycling became anathema, and people who didn’t recycle were scorned by my 8-year old brain,…

The kawaii singularity: learning to love our (adorable) robot overlords

The kawaii singularity is near: robots too cute to resist. In February we were exploring an upper floor of 3331 Arts Chiyoda (map), a creative space in the old Rensei Junior High. The halls were silent, well-insulated from the first-floor crowd. We almost returned downstairs when we noticed activity in one of the classrooms. It looked like an adult-education class: men and women of various ages…

How to interpret Japan’s Animal Quarantine Guide

A few things cross my mind when I look at the Animal Quarantine Guide in the hallways of Narita Airport. 1. Why is the illustration different between the English and the Japanese version? 2. Which version was drawn first?  (Presumably the Japanese.) 3. Was it the same artist? The artistic style looks a bit different,…

Good and bad behavior in the park

Originally posted on Funny Japanese Street Signs 面白い道路標識:
Parks in Tokyo are full of life on the weekends. Families with children, young couples, and the elderly all enjoy the quiet green splendor. Consider Rinshinomori Park 林試の森公園…even the tortoise is happy to be out and about: Or the autumnal bliss of Ikuta Ryokuchi Park 生田緑地 in suburban Kawasaki (near Mukogaokayuen Station 向ヶ丘遊園駅, just 22 minutes from…

America, Big & Tall 大きいサイズの服

Near the Kobe 神戸 waterfront is a grand stone building. A weathered plaque bears the following inscription: On this site in July 1868 was established the first American consulate in Kobe The American consulate can be seen in this map of Kobe from 1929: And in detail: It is no longer an American consulate. The yellow…