Author Archive

Jun
10

The sturdily power of alpine plants

Posted by on Saturday, 10 June, 2006

My girlfriend just bought some new health supplements and reading the package cracked me up. Would you trust something which had this printed on it:

This supplement has appeared for you to bring out a beautiful figure hidden inside of you. Recieve the sturdily power of alpine plants for your beauty. People will talk about your beauty soon.

I’m a bit hesitant… But I will wait until she tries them; maybe they really contain good stuff from the Alps!!

Jun
06

Cory Doctorow visits a Radio Shack

Posted by on Tuesday, 6 June, 2006

OK, so I’m an Internet geek, so sue me, but I rolled on the floor laughing when I read this story:

Cory Doctorow visits a Radio Shack

CORY DOCTOROW: And I have a background wallpaper skin of the Ontario subway system with all the stop names cleverly rearranged to spell out the names of the characters from “Harry Potter”.

Not funny at all if you’re not already an avid Boing Boing reader. (Via Waxy.org, the king of links.)

By the way, if you’re totally clueless on who this Cory Doctorow person is, you can read up a bit on him here

Jun
02

Japan’s Good, Bad, and Strange

Posted by on Friday, 2 June, 2006

I wanted to share with you three lists; one is the top things I love about Japan. The second contains the things I hate, and the last one is a list of things I just don’t understand about Japan!

5 Things I Love About Japan

Low crime makes you feel secure whenever and whereever you are
The food is simply marvellous. And the variety you can get is top notch.
– You are never bored in a city like Tokyo. Always something to do!
– Japanese people are extremely service-minded and courteous.
Public transportation is abundant, on time, and clean!

5 Things I Hate About Japan

Earthquakes – sooner or later there’s gonna be a big one.
– It’s expensive to live here, and apartments are generally rather small.
– Japanese people’s lack of flexibility can be frustrating.
Honne and Tatemae
– Japanese working hours tend to be ridiculously long.

5 Things I Simply Don’t Understand About Japan

Fried fish and rice for breakfast
– Why most houses & apartments only have frosted windows.
– The fascination of Pachinko.
J-Pop
– Japanese people’s patience to wait countless hours for anything.

May
31

Japan the fabulous

Posted by on Wednesday, 31 May, 2006

It has been a hectic few weeks with few updates, and I am truly sorry about that. I have had numerous ideas for posts, but lack of time has stopped me.

Now I am overseas on a business trip, it is the first time in two years that I am back in my “homeland” of Europe, and it has made me reflect on my situtation as a foreigner in Japan.

There are surely a lot of things about Japan that I absolutely despise and cannot understand; but there are so many more things that are so great they should not be underestimated. Just a simple thing as shopping on weekends. I know it differs from country to country in Europe, but I think Sweden is sort average when it comes to business hours. How on earth are you supposed to enjoy shopping on weekends (the only real time you have time, if you have a full time job) if stores open at noon and close at 4 PM? Further, I estimate 75% of all shops are fully closed on Sundays, and the ones that are open are open as short (or shorter) as on Saturdays.

This is never a problem in Japan, where most shops are always open from 10-11 AM to 8-9 PM everyday including weekends. Sure, stores are occasionally closed – but what is most common is that many department stores are closed on a regular weekday instead; and not necessarily once a week, but once a month or less. Fabulous. Truly fabulous.

Speaking of shopping. (Sounds like I love shopping… I don’t, but hey, sometimes you gotta do it, and it’s better to do it in a fun, relaxed way isn’t it) The amount and variety of products available in Japan is purely amazing. Speaking in European terms, I doubt there is a city in Europe, maybe except London, that has a greater market for consumer products. And I am not only talking about luxury goods or electronics (where Tokyo undoubtedly is #1), but also cheap shopping is fantastic. Where else are the cities filled with “100-yen stores” (where everything costs exactly 100 yen, or close to; i.e. roughly $.90) that has everything from napkins, cutlery, cups, frying pans, rakes, handbags, chips, noodles, sodas, etc. etc. etc. There is one big myth about Japan and that is that everything is expensive. It is utterly false. The living expenses as in rent etc. may be high, but otherwise you can live dirt cheap here. And it’s fabulous.

May
15

Disposable chopsticks slapped with tax

Posted by on Monday, 15 May, 2006

I fear this might be the first step to the downfall of the whole Japanese society:

China slaps tax on chopsticks exports

I foresee chaos in the streets. It will be a dog eat dog situation, where only the strong will be able to continue to eat with their cherished chopsticks! The rest will have to make do with a spoon, or, gasp, fork and knife.