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151 posts tagged japan

Japan has taken the humble hot dog and turned it into an adorably creepy lunchtime snack. According to RocketNews24, they’re called “sausage people”, which somehow makes them even creepier. These little red weenie folk appear all too eager to be boiled in soup, nestled in sandwiches or posed in cute bento meals.

There are undoubtedly children and adults throughout Japan entertaining each other by performing midday meal skits with their smiling sausage people. We know we would be.

[via RocketNews24]

We’ve discovered yet another destination to add to our list for when we finally take that field trip to Japan: Moomin Cafés.

Created Swedish-Finn illustrator and writer Tove Jansson for a series of books and comics, the Moomins are a family of fairy tale characters that look like white hippos who’ve learned to walk upright and sometimes wear the odd article of clothing. They live in Moominvalley where they share all sorts of adventures with a variety of equally interesting characters.

The original books are so popular throughout Japan that they spawned a franchise of animated tv shows [Buy on Amazon], merchandise [Buy on Amazon], and a chain of Moomin Bakeries and Cafés managed by the Benelic company. Each adorable location is full of Moomin-themed art, Moomin-shaped food and drinks, and Moomin merchandise. But, wait, none of those cute things are the best part.

The best part is that, when you visit a Moomin Café all by yourself, you’ll soon be informed that someone else would like to sit with you. And before you have time to wonder who on earth might’ve followed you there, you’ll be joined at your table by one of the Moomin characters - or rather a large plush version of one of them. No need to bring a book. We’re sure you’ll have plenty to talk about.

Visit RocketNews24 to learn more.

Does this bedroom look like a dream come true or a saccharine nightmare? Either way it’s complete kawaii overload. A bright and disorienting “swarm of neon-colored cuteness.” Entitled Colorful Rebellion — Seventh Nightmare, the room is an immersive installation created by Japanese artist Sebastian Masuda.

"This installation, which filled the Kianga Ellis Projects in Chelsea, New York earlier this year, features a room bursting with manufactured objects of cuteness, including bundles of fake fur, stuffed animals, plastic jewelry, girl’s hair accessories, dollhouses, and other colorful toys that completely cover the walls and ceiling of the room. In the middle of the room is a bed, which visitors could lay upon and gaze up at the explosion of “Harajuku kawaii” closing in on them from every direction.”

Harajuku is an area in Japan known as a hub for Japanese youth culture and fashion. Fans of Japanese street fashion gather to show off all sorts of distinctive and outrageous styles. Masuda recognizes that this is sometimes much more than a flamboyant hobby. It’s often a vital coping mechanism for youth in Japan.

"One must understand that in Japan, therapy and psychological outlets are not as acceptable as they are in the United States," Masuda explains in his artist statement. "The majority of the time, these girls do not fit in with their classmates and community. Harajuku is not only a place where they can be different without consequence, it is also a place that provides fashion alternatives for girls to express dark emotions in flamboyant, alternative styles."

In addition to being an artist, Masuda owns a Japanese boutique called 6%DOKIDOKI and has been very influential in popularizing kawaii culture, both within Japan and around the world.

[via My Modern Metropolis and The Huffington Post]

This awesome Gundam mobile suit is made of stone, stands 13 feet tall, weighs 10 tons and might just be the most geekstastic headstone we’ve ever seen. It was photographed in front of a stonemasonry shop outside a Kise Sekizai Boseki Center in Yasu City, Shiga Prefecture, Japan.

Kise Sekizai is a chain of Japanese grave makers in the area. According to the watermark on Google Street View it was last seen in 2013 and probably still stands there to this day.

If your business is building tombstones and your population includes an ever-increasing number of anime-loving Otaku, it seems both shrewd and ambitious to advertise such extravagantly geeky custom grave markers. We love it.
[via RocketNews24]

This awesome Gundam mobile suit is made of stone, stands 13 feet tall, weighs 10 tons and might just be the most geekstastic headstone we’ve ever seen. It was photographed in front of a stonemasonry shop outside a Kise Sekizai Boseki Center in Yasu City, Shiga Prefecture, Japan.

Kise Sekizai is a chain of Japanese grave makers in the area. According to the watermark on Google Street View it was last seen in 2013 and probably still stands there to this day.

If your business is building tombstones and your population includes an ever-increasing number of anime-loving Otaku, it seems both shrewd and ambitious to advertise such extravagantly geeky custom grave markers. We love it.

[via RocketNews24]

Kawaii! Prepare yourself for another awesomely potent dose of Japanese cuteness. Meet Marutaro, an impressively round African pygmy hedgehog who lives in Japan with his hedgehog wife named Okomesan and a daughter named Kinoko.

Thanks to his inherent adorableness and charm, as well as his owner’s predilection for photographing him behind silly paper faces and in front of all sorts of chalkboard scenes, Marutaro has become an internet sensation on Japanese twitter. There you’ll find a seemingly endless stream of cute photos that are sure to keep your blood sugar level dangerously elevated.

[via RocketNews24]

A few weeks ago we shared a couple photos taken at a Japanese pigeon mask party. Today, thanks to Kotaku, we learned that that festive occasion was just the tip of an awesomely weird Japanese iceberg.

A Japanese comedy site called Daily Portal Z recently held a “Hato Event" (‘hato’ means pigeon in Japanese) at Osaka’s Grand Front shopping center. Attendees wore our Pigeon Masks and had their photos taken at the massive and fashionable Grand Front Osaka shopping center.

But there’s more, so much more. It seems Twitter is full of Japanese users posting their own photos while wearing pigeons masks - during meals, at the office, at the bar, lounging at home with their cats, riding the subway, even at the park hanging out with live pigeons. It’s amazing. When we go to Japan, we’ll be sure to pack a Pigeon Mask.

Visit Kotaku for more photos and complete photo credits.

Kawaii! These little kitties aren’t just unbelievably cute, they’re also edible. They’re made by a Japanese mom named Caroline for Neko no Hi or Cat Day, which takes place each year on February 22nd.

Cat-shaped treats seem like a wonderful way to celebrate how much you like your feline friends. These treats are cat-shaped nerikiri, which is “a traditional Japanese sweet made by mixing shiro-an (sweetened white bean paste) with gyuhi (made of glutinous rice, similar to mochi but softer).” Caroline sculpts her nerikiri cats and kittens into various sizes and poses and then uses edible dyes to add distinguishing markings and fine details. She even makes little accessories for them, like tea sets and pillows for extra-comfy lounging.

Based on the effort that goes into making these sweets, it seems likely that Caroline’s family probably has at least one real life cat of their own and we’re guessing it leads a wonderfully spoiled life.

Visit RocketNews24 for additional photos.

Check out this awesome Super Mario Bros. costume depicting Mario in his original 8-bit form. These photos were taken by e_earphone and mamerialyuuyaaa at a huge cosplay street festival taking place in the wonderfully geeky Nipponbashi district of Osaka, Japan. It’s such a well-attended event that classic Mario ran into a little Luigi. Let’s hope no one got in the way of that giant Koopa shell.

Visit Kotaku Cosplay for many more photos from this fantastic event.

Fast food is already pretty unhealthy, so why not substitute that cheeseburger, milkshake and fries with a perfect (and perfectly edible) replica made of cookies?
This awesome cookie meal was made by the older sister of Japanese Twitter user あかり who added that her sister, “Can make anything out of cookies.” We don’t doubt it for a second and hope we get to see more of her tantalizingly tricksy cookie creations.
[via RocketNews24]

Fast food is already pretty unhealthy, so why not substitute that cheeseburger, milkshake and fries with a perfect (and perfectly edible) replica made of cookies?

This awesome cookie meal was made by the older sister of Japanese Twitter user あかり who added that her sister, “Can make anything out of cookies.” We don’t doubt it for a second and hope we get to see more of her tantalizingly tricksy cookie creations.

[via RocketNews24]

Leave it to Japan to demonstrate an exceptionally awesome way to liven up our morning commute. This 15-second commerical for Fit’s LINK chewing gum depicts a businessman being aided in his morning commute by a giant cat. It’s the urban business version of the Catbus from My Neighbor Totoro.

Click here to watch the short commercial.

[via Design Taxi and BuzzFeed]