Fruit vendor Takahiko Takahashi

| Jan 28, 2010

Fruit vendor Takahiko Takahashi

Come rain or shine, Takahiko Takahashi, 69, is outdoors joking with customers and packing delicious peaches, mikan (mandarins), nashi (Japanese pears), apples and melons into their shopping baskets. Though he’s a Tokyo fruit vendor, he knows and loves his vegetables, too. He even grows ...

Ice cream man Tokuya Hirose

| Jan 14, 2010

Ice cream man Tokuya Hirose

Tokuya Hirose, 82, is the second-generation owner of Ze-roku, a tiny ice-cream shop in Osaka city’s Hommachi area. Established in 1913, Ze-roku served traditional Japanese sweets till 1952, when Tokuya’s father and this three sons came up with a brilliant combination that melted everyone’s ...

Web designer Peter Brune

| Dec 24, 2009

Web designer Peter Brune

Peter Brune, 45, is a Web designer and photographer who has been a Japanese resident for 10 years. Born and raised in East Berlin, Brune was a world traveler even before he set foot outside the walls of his home: Absorbed in books and ...

Photographer/filmmaker Kiyotaka Tsurisaki

| Dec 10, 2009

Photographer/filmmaker Kiyotaka Tsurisaki

Kiyotaka Tsurisaki, 42, is a photographer and mondo filmmaker who specializes in shots of corpses. Since 1994, he has taken photos of over 1,000 dead bodies, often chasing police cars to scenes of crimes, accidents and suicides in such countries as Thailand, Russia and ...

Cable guy Yasushi Sano

| Nov 26, 2009

Cable guy Yasushi Sano

Yasushi Sano, 30, is a “cable guy” living and working in Tokyo. By his estimates, over the past six years, he has installed cable TV into about fives homes a day, averaging 25 hook-ups a week, 100 a month and 1,200 a year, bringing ...

Tokyo Girls Collection producer Ayako Nagaya

| Oct 22, 2009

Tokyo Girls Collection producer Ayako Nagaya

Ayako Nagaya, 37, is the president of F1 Media Inc. and the chief producer of Tokyo Girls Collection (TGC), a semiannual entertainment extravaganza showcasing Japanese street fashion, music and a myriad of products, from instant noodles to cars. Staged in Tokyo’s Yoyogi Stadium, this ...

Nissan Chuzousho President Shunichiro Tsuji

| Oct 8, 2009

Nissan Chuzousho President Shunichiro Tsuji

Shunichiro Tsuji, 62, is president of Nissan Chuzousho Ltd., Japan’s last surviving beigoma maker, located in Kawaguchi City, Saitama Prefecture. Beigoma are small cast-iron spinning tops that are spun in a game that has been a favorite with kids and grown-ups in Japan for ...

Asahi Breweries advisor Takanori Nakajo

| Sep 24, 2009

Asahi Breweries advisor Takanori Nakajo

Takanori Nakajo, 82, is the honorary adviser of Asahi Breweries Ltd., one of Japan’s leading beer and beverage makers. From “boy Friday” in 1952, Nakajo worked seven days a week until his official retirement as chairman in 1994. He poured all of his energy ...

| Sep 24, 2009

Asahi Breweries advisor Takanori Nakajo

Takanori Nakajo, 82, is the honorary adviser of Asahi Breweries Ltd., one of Japan’s leading beer and beverage makers. From “boy Friday” in 1952, Nakajo worked seven days a week until his official retirement as chairman in 1994. He poured all of his energy ...

Tour guide Shinobu Nimura

| Sep 10, 2009

Tour guide Shinobu Nimura

Shinobu Nimura, 50, is an experienced tour guide who organizes long-distance bus journeys through Asia, Africa and South America. His tours take one to two months and cover vast territories. In 25 years, he has clocked up an incredible 280,000 km on buses, the ...