These days, everyone wants “experiences,” not “stuff,” so how about digging into your Santa sack for presents that deliver #youllneverguesswhatwedids that could only come from (where else?)…Japan! This year, give the gift of…
…making your own Panda Face sushi and finding out who’s the fastest panda-grabber in the land
Level up by slipping in a few made with natto (stinky, slimy, fermented soybeans) just to keep it extra-competitive
…drinking to The One That Got Away with these fishy beer glasses
After hoisting a few trout-themed brews with these beauties, coming home with an empty creel could become an annual Thing.
…getting on your holiday cheer decked out as Shiba Santa instead of St. Nick
Because what could be more useful than being able to do a heckin’ refuse when Auntie Gert insists on giving you a perfume-drenched hug in return?
…lighting up with the cutest matches to ever ignite what you’re smoking
Excuse me, I think we need to see those again
…getting an instant face lift without all that pesky surgery
(Although it’s unclear how these stretchy ear-squishers can vanish the saggies without the benefit of a little slicing and dicing (｀_´)ゞ)
…owning the pet of your dreams (or the next best thing): an animal face washcloth
Sure, you might be able to convince a garden variety feline or canine to wash your face if you smear it with enough peanut butter or chicken livers, but if your giftee is craving a facial cleansing from, say, a red panda or a fox or a koala, you can’t do better than wrapping up one of these oh-so-friendly facecloths.
…spend more time eating bonbons on your chaise lounge while a dedicated JAPANESE slow cooker whips up dinner
Which is just like a Western crock pot, except the presets aren’t for Three Alarm Chili or mom’s chicken soup, they’re for kakuni (braised pork stew), nikujaga (beef and potato stew), edamame (boiled soybeans) and both kinds of rice (white and brown).
…scooting your kitchen chair across the floor on little cat feet
With these cat paw chair socks, your midnight snacking can be silent AND deadly.
…becoming the supreme ruler of the coffee break with this 3D latte foam tool
Yes, now you can top your double shots of espresso with adorable bears, cats, bunnies and Godzillas in your very own home.
…sharing the pleasures of extreme personal grooming with that boyfriend who insists you maintain an immaculate Brazilian, with the Gosso Nose Wax System
What it lacks in waxable square inches, it more than makes up for in pain.
Or you could instantly whisk away your bestie to the seedy underworld of Tokyo with a novel set in Japan. (And in case you’re a bit late checking off your list, this one will still arrive in time for Xmas)
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!