August 20

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Winter In A Can

Used to be that Japanese people kept cool in the summer by hanging little bells that rang in the barest breeze, gazing at goldfish in clear globes, and listening to ghost stories that sent shivers up their spines, but now technology has had its evil way with tradition. Behold…Ice Wear!

It’s only one of many cooling sprays, most rated with how many degrees of chilliness they deliver. Ice Wear claims that if you spray it on your skin, you’ll feel like it’s 9° cooler, and in fact (I’m testing it right now!) my left arm IS much cooler than the rest of me. I sprayed it on half an hour ago, and surprisingly enough, it’s still working.

There’s another school of thought that says if you chill your neck, it’ll cool your whole body. Wetting the Miracool, a 4″ X 24″ strip of rather repulsive, rubbery, clammy towel-ish material, turns it shockingly cold, even if the only water have is unrefreshingly warm. Unfortunately, draping a Miraclecool around your neck is about as appealing as wreathing yourself in a dead eel, and twice as fashionable.

If you’d like to visit a Loft store the next time you’re in Tokyo, maps are on my website, The Tokyo Guide I Wish I’d Had.

Jonelle Patrick is the author of  four novels set in Tokyo

A young woman dressed as a Gothic Lolita is found dead in a car with two strangers. But the more Yumi Hata learns about her friend’s death, the more she’s convinced it was murder…read more