Japanese comedian apologizes for his many “multipurpose toilet affairs”

That was not one of the multiple purposes of those toilets.

Earlier this year, the entertainment world was shocked when comedian Ken Watabe was caught in an extramarital affair. The affair part wasn’t all that shocking, because, let’s face it, a celebrity having an affair is about as surprising as finding vihta in a Finnish sauna… Am I right, folks?

But what made this scandal extra-juicy to the media was that he had multiple illicit rendezvous with different women, and exclusively inside multipurpose bathrooms. These kinds of restrooms are found all over public places in Japan like government buildings and shopping centers. They are genderless, intended for individual use, and provide a bevy of added functions as well as ample space to cater to all types of differently abled people.

▼ A rather extensive tour of the many features of a multipurpose bathroom

In Japan they are called “tamokuteki toilet” or “multipurpose toilets” as here the more direct nomenclature is preferred to euphemistic terms like “restroom” or “bathroom.” For parents of small children too these places can be a godsend, which also makes what Watabe did just that much more vomit-inducing.

According to reports, after hitting it off with various women he met on separate occasions while out and about, rather than one of Japan’s many discreet love hotels, or even a regular hotel, he would arrange to meet them in a multipurpose toilet in various Tokyo locations.

There he would proceed to get it on with them, often abusing the restroom’s handy shower faucet features to clean up after. He allegedly would also slip them a 10,000-yen (US$96) bill afterward – an odd move that’s equal parts considerate and insulting.

▼ If you want to make that special woman feel really appreciated and not at all like a prostitute, be sure to have sex with …continue reading

    

KANOGU: Aromatic Paints Stimulate Your Sense of Sight & Smell

Painting primarily involves the sense of seeing and touching. Kanogu (香の具), which means “aromatic paints” in Japanese, is a new tool that combines 100% natural essential oils with paints to offer a new way of painting that also involves the sense of smell. Aromas are all around us, but how much do we really understand […]

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Disney lingerie sets from Japan let you step into the world of a magical princess

Beautiful lace embellishments are just part of what makes these undergarments so special.

“If you dream it, you can be it” is a phrase that’s strangely apt for the lingerie world in Japan, where your wildest fantasies of dressing up as your zodiac sign, your favourite animal or even an Evangelion character really can come true.

Now fantasies are becoming a reality again, with the announcement of a new lingerie line dedicated to some of the most famous princesses from the world of Disney. Created by Japanese online retailer Belle Maison, there are four designs to choose from, each paying homage to a different princess.

The bras are adorned with a beautiful lace embellishment on the left cup that details the silhouette of each princess. In the image below (left to right) you can see the princesses featured in the range: Ariel, Rapunzel, Jasmine, and Belle.

The lingerie sets feature the same colour scheme as the dresses worn by the princesses in the Disney films, and come with a beautiful crystal-like charm on the bra.

…continue reading

    

We piss our pants over and over to find the most comfortable Japanese baby diaper to pee in

SoraNews24’s newest daddy launches into warm, wet research for the sake of his daughter.

Regular SoraNews24 readers may have noticed that our Japanese-language reporter Ahiru Neko hasn’t been around as often recently. There’s actually a happy reason for that: he recently became a daddy!

Ahiru Neko and his wife welcomed a baby girl to their family this fall, and so he’s been taking time off to care for his adorable offspring. That means that instead of spending his days getting hot crepes thrown on his face and waiting for pigeons to poop on him, he’s been giving the baby baths and changing her diapers.

But that second fatherly task got him wondering. This is Ahiru Neko and his wife’s first child, and so he really doesn’t know much about which brand of diaper is the best. So he went on the Internet and did some checking around, which produced all sorts of information about which diapers are the quickest to change and which make it easiest to tell when the baby is wet. And that’s all fine and good, but Ahiru Neko couldn’t help notice that all those articles were written from the parents’ perspective.

Caring father that he is, Ahiru Neko wanted to know which diapers are the best from the perspective of the person actually using them, the baby. Unfortunately, at just a few months old his daughter is still too young to give any sort of verbal feedback, so Ahiru Neko was left with only one choice…

…buy a bunch of different diapers and see how it feels to piss himself in each of them.

Before we get started, …continue reading

    

Straw Hat Brides – Official One Piece wedding dresses going on sale in Japan

Designers create wedding dresses for four of the anime/manga’s lovely ladies, and you can wear them too.

As once-in-a-lifetime attire, wedding dresses are meant to stand out and create an aura that’s beautiful and enchanting. It’s not uncommon for brides-to-be to pick out a gown they hope will make them look like a fairy-tale princess, but one Japanese dressmaker is instead offering wedding dresses fit for anime pirates.

Japanese wedding planning organization Placole Wedding has created a set of four bridal gowns designed with the question “What sort of dresses would we design for four prominent female members of the One Piece cast?” Obviously, first on the list was Straw Hat Pirate navigator Nami.

The vibrant color is a nod to Nami’s love of oranges and sunny personality, and the off-shoulder gown also incorporates and encircling string of decorative cloth orange blossoms.

Next is Nami’s shipmate Robin, whose dress goes in the opposite direction with full-length sleeves (though they can be removed if you prefer less coverage).

For Nami, a dark navy base with black and white accents was chosen to reflect her cool and complex personality, accompanied by a belt-like section of embroidered flowers.

One Piece royalty is also represented with a dress for Vivi.

<img src="https://soranews24.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2020/12/OP-8.jpg?w=640" alt="" width="640" height="489" srcset="https://soranews24.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2020/12/OP-8.jpg 845w, https://soranews24.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/3/2020/12/OP-8.jpg?resize=150,114 150w, …continue reading

    

TGIFWPAV: Thank God it’s Friday with the Pikachu ASMR video【Video】

Put in your earphones and get ready for the warm fuzzies that only the Pokémon stars “pika” can provide.

No matter how much you may like your job or school, it’s safe to say very few people get to the end of the week and say “You know what? I’ve got so much energy that I absolutely don’t need a day off.” So if you’ve had a bit of a week, and are looking for a way to unwind now that Friday is finally here, this video is just the thing…and, as is so often the case, the source of our warm fuzzy feelings is none other than Pikachu.

Since January, the official Pokémon YouTube channel has been releasing a series of ASMR videos. Previously editions have starred Charmander, Grimer, and Squirtle, but the newest episode marks the appearance of the franchise mascot himself.

Pikachu by the Patio doesn’t try to be cunning in its title. It is indeed a leisurely one-angle view of the beloved Electric-type in a living room with a stylish wood-floor section, where he alternates between thinking up new ways to play and taking extremely comfy looking maps in the gentle sunlight coming through the window.

Sound is a critical component of ASMR videos, and Charmander’s and Squirtle’s featured crackling fire and ocean waves. This time around, though, there’s no natural environmental noise, and instead we’re treated to Pikachu’s irresistibly cute voice as he scampers all around the house, and occasionally climbs up onto our head, judging from how the audio changes.

Highlights of the video include Pikachu bringing us a ball …continue reading

    

Typhoon destroys real Ghost of Tsushima island shrine torii gate, crowdfunding campaign launched

Video game inspiration receives massive support in request for repair donations.

Watazumi Shrine sits on the coast of an island in Nagasaki Prefecture, and is dedicated to Toyotama-hime, a Shinto sea goddess. In keeping with this, the shrine’s most distinctive feature is its torii gates that rise out of the ocean waters.

However, with Nagasaki being located at the southwest corner of Japan’s main islands, the prefecture is prone to getting hit by powerful typhoons in late summer and early autumn. So while the shrine ordinarily boasts a pair of watery torii gates, the one seen on the right in the photo below was knocked over and destroyed during a typhoon that swept through the area on September 7.

▼ The torii following the storm

Repairing the gate won’t be easy or cheap. Aside from the difficulty of installing it away from dry land, it’ll actually need to be constructed on a different island and shipped to Watazumi. While the shrine has been soliciting donations from the community, the rural town has a population of less than 30,000 people, and it isn’t a particularly wealthy demographic either.

So the shrine decided to hold a crowdfunding campaign on Japanese crowdfunding site Campfire, hoping to raise five million yen (US$47,620). That might seem like an ambitious goal for a countryside shrine, …continue reading

    

Studio Ghibli puppets??!! Hayao Miyazaki’s son unveils Earwig and the Witch puppet show 【Video】

Goro Miyazaki gives us a sneak peek at the puppet show that will mark the debut of Ghibli’s first CG anime film.

With the Ghibli Museum out of action for a large stretch of this year, staff have been providing fans with videos showing us what goes on behind-the-scenes when visitors aren’t around.

For their latest video, they shared an extra special treat for fans, letting us sit in on a meeting with Hayao Miyazaki’s son, Goro Miyazaki. The younger Miyazaki, who directed the Ghibli films Tales from Earthsea (2006) and From Up on Poppy Hill (2011), is now set to debut his third directorial work, Earwig and the Witch, the studio’s first-ever CG feature film, as a TV special on national broadcaster NHK on 30 December.

To celebrate the big debut, the Ghibli Museum is planning something very special: a puppet show featuring the characters from the movie. As it turns out, Goro is not just a talented director and landscaper (yes, he worked as a landscaper, even helping to design the Ghibli Museum in 1998, before deciding to follow in the footsteps of his famous father). He’s also skilled with puppets, having performed puppet shows back in his student days.

Now, Goro is directing the staff at the Ghibli Museum, who will be helping him put on an Earwig and the Witch Puppet Show, with some awesome-looking puppets that come with glowing eyes.

Take a look at the video below.

The clip shows Goro working the beautifully made puppets like an experienced pro. All the main characters make an appearance, including the star of the show, 10-year-old orphan girl Aya (played by 13-year-old Kokoro Hirasawa in the film).

▼ The movie is titled Aya and the Witch in Japanese.

…continue reading

    

Moving beyond GDP: Well-being and degrowth development alternatives

Moving beyond GDP: Well-being and degrowth development alternatives

The financial crisis of 2008 sent shock waves across the world as economies collapsed or were severely damaged or crippled. Since then, many other crises have ensued, covering issues including debt, finance, stock markets, the environment, natural disasters, society, social media, governance institutions, politics, the nation state, and, most recently, global health pandemics. In a rapidly changing world, the number and frequency of global crises have not slowed or decreased. Rather, such crises are mounting, accelerating, and recurring.

A number of eminent scholars are increasingly turning their attention to the question of what trends the growing frequency of crises might have in common. Nobel-prize winning economists including Amartya Sen and Joseph Stiglitz suggest that the increasing occurrence of crises illustrates the limitations of the dominant growth-led development paradigm. Additionally, they argue that what is being measured as a yardstick of “progress”—and perhaps the yardstick itself—is deeply flawed and no longer viable.

The critique of growth is not surprising because the creator of the world’s first set of gross national product accounts in the 1930s, Simon Kuznets, would later become one of the greatest critics of his own invention, noting that the welfare of a nation cannot be inferred from the measurement of income (Cobb, Halstead, and Rowe 1995: 68). Indeed, there are several problems with using gross domestic product (GDP) as a measure of progress:

  • GDP is unable to distinguish between bad and good economic activities, whereby government expenditure in education and oils spills that need to be cleaned up both contribute to GDP (O’Neil 2015). In this regard, war, crime, and environmental destruction all problematically contribute to the main quantitative indicator of national progress.
  • If GDP is a calculator with a giant “plus” button but no “minus” button, then it cannot capture the social, cultural, and environmental costs and impacts of productive activities …continue reading
        

New Japanese KitKat has been aged in whisky barrels from Islay, Scotland

Blending the best of two worlds together for an unforgettable limited-edition KitKat.

In the land of unusual KitKats, it takes something really special to catch our eye, and Nestlé Japan has done just that with their brand new release, which has been aged in whisky barrels for 180 days.

Called Whisky Barrel Aged, the new chocolate comes to us from the high-end KitKat Chocolatory boutique, with supervision by the Willy Wonka of KitKats, renowned Japanese patissier Yasumasa Takagi.

Takagi has been creating the crème de la crème of KitKats for Nestlé since 2003, overseeing exclusive releases like Ruby and Volcanic Chocolate.

The products sold at KitKat Chocolatery boutiques are known for being more upmarket and luxurious than their supermarket cousins, and this new KitKat promises to deliver an exquisite balance of flavours that will send whisky lovers into a tizzy.

The KitKat has been made with cacao nibs aged for 180 days in barrels once used for ageing whisky, and manually rotated once a week to ensure all the cacao nibs inside come into contact with the barrel.

▼ Rotating the barrels helps to gradually and evenly shift the aroma and taste of whisky throughout the nibs.

▼ The barrels used were from Islay, an island off the west coast of Scotland that’s considered sacred ground for whisky.

The Islay barrels impart a wonderful and unique smoky peatness to the cacao, which come from Ghana and have a mellow …continue reading