| Jun 8, 2010

Mobile game startup boss set own bar

by Minoru Matsutani

David “DC” Collier, 44, from Britain, could not speak a word of Japanese when he first came here seven years ago. Not only has Collier, president of mobile phone game company Pikkle, become conversant in Japanese, but he conducted e-mail correspondence with The Japan ...

N.Y. expat delivers parenting options

| Jun 1, 2010

N.Y. expat delivers parenting options

by Tomoko Otake

When New York native Brett Iimura visited Japan for the first time in 1976, the teenage girl spent an “absolutely amazing” time here. Visiting a Japanese friend she had met at her school in New York, Iimura stood out everywhere she went because back ...

Expat dancer Hibari Misora-inspired

| May 25, 2010

Expat dancer Hibari Misora-inspired

by Kris Kosaka

Chris Chavez maintains an upbeat outlook about life in Japan but leaves the rosy-tinted view for idealists or those newly arrived. This Mexican-American’s snapping brown eyes differentiate clearly the good, bad and indifferent of living as a foreign woman in Tokyo. From her early ...

Nutritionist praises traditional diet

| Apr 13, 2010

Nutritionist praises traditional diet

by Natsuko Fukue

Erica Angyal, the 40-year-old official nutritionist of Miss Universe Japan, is on a mission to bring balanced meals back to the Japanese table. “It’s so ‘mottainai’ (a waste)” that a lot of Japanese women choose Western food over a traditional Japanese diet, said Angyal, ...

Yakushima keeps expat busy as a bee

| Apr 6, 2010

Yakushima keeps expat busy as a bee

by Edan Corkill

Long-term residents of Japan might remember the name Rainer Kaminski. In 1985 he made headlines as the first Westerner to become a taxi driver in Tokyo. What happened to him after that? Well, after six months as a cabby based in Setagaya Ward, Kaminski ...

A fresh approach to Japanese food

| Mar 30, 2010

A fresh approach to Japanese food

by Tomoko Otake

Nicolas Soergel graciously brings two tiny plates to the table. They each contain three pinkish “umeboshi” (salted, dry plums), but those on one of the plates have been preserved for just one year; the ones on the other plate — whose skins are a ...

Openness is key, bookseller says

| Mar 2, 2010

Openness is key, bookseller says

by Minoru Matsutani

Alastair Lamond, a 47-year-old Briton, is like many English-speaking foreigners. He began working in Japan as a teacher of his native tongue. He later landed a job selling English-language educational materials. “I liked teaching very much and was satisfied when I helped students, encouraging ...

Instinct key for singer-entrepreneur

| Feb 16, 2010

Instinct key for singer-entrepreneur

by Mariko Kato

For a musician and entrepreneur with many professional faces, Australian Donna Burke is surprisingly wary of constantly taking work-related calls. “I’m always disconnecting myself. I’ll go for days without looking at my mobile phone,” said the singer, narrator, songwriter, lyricist and talent agency head. ...