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In This Case, Maybe a Product Photo Wasn’t The Hottest Idea

Royal Jelly Essence! Ooo, this face mask promises to use the rejuvenating power of distilled nectar of the bee-gods to transform my face into a paragon of dewy freshness!

It’s not until I get it home and look a little more closely at the package that I wonder hmm, what are those round white things in the middle of the honeycomb in the photo? Surely they’re not…DISGUSTINGLY WORMIFORM BEE LARVAE?!

Ewwww! They are!

So, what do you think? Is the yuck-o-meter reading of a skin treatment made from bee grubs worse than the one for that face cream geisha used to use, the one made from nightingale poop?

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Jonelle Patrick View All

Writing mystery books set in Tokyo is mostly what I do, but I also blog about the odd stuff I see every day in Japan. I'm a graduate of Stanford University and the Sendagaya Japanese Institute in Tokyo, and a member of the International Thriller Writers, the Mystery Writers of America, and Sisters In Crime. When I'm not in Tokyo, I live in San Francisco. I also host a travel site called The Tokyo Guide I Wish I'd Had, so if you're headed to Japan and want to check out the places I take my friends when they're in town, take a look!

5 thoughts on “In This Case, Maybe a Product Photo Wasn’t The Hottest Idea Leave a comment

    • Actually, the little bee-worms had been reduced to some sort of Essence Of Bee Worm so the wet felty-mask looked suspiciously harmless and clinical. But…I knew they were there! O_O

  1. Very popular dish in China, and is supposed to taste like bacon.

    Bee larvae is very similar to Hachinoko, which I had last time I was in Nagano:

    “Hachionoko (ja) Hachinoko is the larvae and pupae of kurosuzumebachi, or yellowjackets. Carefully harvested from nests, hachinoko is cooked in soy sauce and sugar. Hachinoko is said to be somewhat sweet with a crumbly texture.”

    Or, you could do like me friend’s grandmother and just dip dead bees in honey and eat them whole. Perfect protein.

    • You actually ate hachinoko?! I’ve seen them for sale on inaka backroads, but am quite sure I’m not brave enough to try them. I know they are a perfect renewable source of protein (and in fact, were quite popular in postwar Japan, when it was eat them or starve) but, uh, I think I’d have to go vegan before I’d pop one in my mouth (><).

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