Nov 22, 2009

Our growing Earth?

by Jeff Ogrisseg

The world is awash with wild theories, conjecture and speculation about everything you could imagine — and then some. However, one theory that popped up some time ago stands out due to its unexpected curiosity: Earth is enlarging — in the way a pumpkin ...

| Nov 15, 2009

Opening a 'window' to Japan

by Tomoko Otake

As a seven-year veteran at the Narita Airport Tourist Information Center, Yuka Tsujimura is at ease handling all kinds of questions and requests for help from inbound tourists who have just set foot in Japan. With a disarmingly elegant smile, trilingual abilities and a ...

Nov 8, 2009

Menswear bursts the bubble

by Paul Mcinnes

It comes as no great surprise to see so many international designers turning to Japan for artistic inspiration, because it’s well known that the fashion pack often come to the Far East for fresh ideas. Take Raf Simons. His latest collection for Jil Sander, ...

Nov 8, 2009

Innovation feeds on growing flux in male looks

by Paul Mcinnes

From their bases on opposite sides of the Pacific, Japanese and American menswear labels have begun to rip up the rule books and reinvent how men think about fashion. Long gone are the days when ostentatious Europeans, such as heavyweights Armani, Gucci and Dior ...

Nov 1, 2009

Symposium hears of new 'pan-Asian' trend

by Tomoko Otake

“It’s been years since Japan, in the eyes of outside observers, entered the phase of “Japan Nothing.” This followed an era of “Japan Bashing” during its 1980s economic heyday and then “Japan Passing” in the post-bubble ’90s. Yet between 1995 and 2005, the number ...

Oct 25, 2009

Bodhisattva of the river road

by Hillel Wright

“Have another drink, Boss!” Yes, Saburo Yamada was the boss, the company president — and yes, he would have another drink. And why not? Business was good. His small but productive company made ships’ propellers and marine metalwork and had contracts with Mitsubishi, one ...

| Oct 18, 2009

Roll up! Roll up!

by Daniel Robson

London, where there are tens of thousands of Japanese people living at any one time, is awash with world cuisine. But most Japanese food available in eateries there would hardly pass muster in its homeland. That is where Hideyuki Uno scores big, because — ...

Oct 11, 2009

Which names are to be found where?

The geographical distribution of today’s family names, moving roughly north to south from Hokkaido to Okinawa and listing the five most commonly found in each prefecture in order of occurrence. Hokkaido: Sato, Takahashi, Sasaki, Suzuki, Ito Aomori: Kudo, Sato, Sasaki, Kimura, Narita Iwate: Sato, ...

Oct 11, 2009

What's in a (Japanese) name?

by Michael Hoffman

“How do you do, my name is Saito Ichiro Sama-no-kami Minamoto-no-Ason Tadayoshi.” We can be grateful to the reformers of the Meiji Period (1868-1912) for cutting Japanese names down to size. Renaming the Japanese people was part and parcel of their overthrow of feudalism. ...

Oct 11, 2009

What's in a (Japanese) name?

by Michael Hoffman

“How do you do, my name is Saito Ichiro Sama-no-kami Minamoto-no-Ason Tadayoshi.” We can be grateful to the reformers of the Meiji Period (1868-1912) for cutting Japanese names down to size. Renaming the Japanese people was part and parcel of their overthrow of feudalism. ...

Shinjuku shows the way

Sep 27, 2009

Shinjuku shows the way

by Edan Corkill

Property ads in Hatsudai and Hatagaya, immediately west of central Tokyo’s Shinjuku Station, often trumpet the fact that it’s possible to “commute by bike” to the neighboring hub. Last year that ride became a little bit easier, when the so-called Kyu-Tamagawa Suido Road, running ...