I feel kind of sorry for the staff at the Tolo Bakery & Cafe, because how many times can you hear, “Kawaiiiii!” in one day without checking yourself into the … Continue Reading Totoro Cream Puffs
So, I was walking through the stately Ikegami Hongan-ji temple grounds this spring, and I saw this sign. I guess with the shrinking population and all, the number of regular … Continue Reading Funeral For A…What?
Yikes, everything is blooming crazy early this year! Here are a few highlights, as each day unfolds. For directions and maps, head over to The Best Cherry Blossom Spots in … Continue Reading Cherry Blossom Report 2018
Walking back from the Nezu Museum this week, I was crossing the street behind this official government worker. Yes, his job is to walk around my neighborhood in a flourescent yellow … Continue Reading Jobs I Do Not Want To Have When I Grow Up
Yes, it’s exactly what it looks like. A fuzzy green polka-dot toilet seat cover. Because Japan delivers a whole new level of hurt to the concept of freezing your butt … Continue Reading Things I Never Envisioned Myself Owning
I know you’ve just been WAITING for more amusing observations and subtly ironic drawings about modern life from Yamada Zenjido (the artist who goes by y_haiku), so for those of … Continue Reading More Hilarious Haiku About The Small Mysteries Of Modern Life
Ah, New Year’s, when everyone in Japan visits their local kami-sama for the first time and gets a glimpse of their fortune for the coming year! But if you’re geographically … Continue Reading Are Ya Feelin’ Lucky?
It’s that time of year, when everyone who’s easy to buy presents for already has a big satisfying check mark next to their name, but the ones who don’t are … Continue Reading Top Ten Crazy Holiday Gifts from Japan 2017!
There’s a little shop near Sendagi Station called Amezaiku-ya where you can order the ultimate sweet selfie! Most often commissioned for wedding cake toppers, all the resident artists need is … Continue Reading Sweet Selfies On A Stick
It’s time again for the best free holiday light show ever! Here are this year’s Tokyo Illuminations offerings, some of them even better than before: • TOKYO MIDTOWN This year’s … Continue Reading The Best Tokyo Illuminations 2017
That’s what you call this in Japan. It’s an experience that looks way better shared on social media than in real life. But I gotta say, Japan is genius at … Continue Reading Instabae
The season has arrived, and in somewhat strange order this year. The ginkgo trees are full-on gold and already carpeting their surroundings with fallen leaves, but most Japanese maples are … Continue Reading A Feast Of Autumn Leaves
In the land where nannies are nearly as scarce as chimney sweeps, this all-Japanese celebration of bygone British privilege is about to hit the stage. It’s too bad they don’t … Continue Reading Poppins-san
Yesterday I was walking through Ueno Station, and I spotted this I’ve posted before about silly subway posters that warn against kicking the ticket wicket, pitching a beer in the station … Continue Reading Most Useless Subway Poster In The History Of Useless Subway Posters
I know it seems like all I do these days is frant about looking at stuff lit up at night, but there’s been a sudden rash of illuminations events in … Continue Reading Yokohama Smart Illumination 2017: Even More & Better Than Before
Level up, holiday lightshow fanboys & girls! This digital greenhouse ups the ante in the illuminations game, bigtime. First of all, you can go inside and LIVE THE KALEIDOSCOPIC DREAM. … Continue Reading The Digital Greenhouse: Interactive Illuminations, I Am In You!
This insidious Halloween snowman’s got a world-class #xmasmissioncreep game going on, but I’m going to choose not to be reminded that the Japanese Christmas glitter bomb is poised to hit us … Continue Reading Hallowrong
• @seishonagon A latecomer pushes in front of you at a festival and holds up his huge ipad to take pictures #hatefulthings @seishonagon Someone wearing a bright orange jacket is … Continue Reading Modern Day Tweets From The Pillow Book
There’s a secret walled garden at the Ueno Toshogu Shrine that’s only open once a year for peony season, but guess what? This year they’re letting us come in to … Continue Reading In The Japanese Dahlia Garden
Who can say they never clutched the fence at their local zoo’s lemur exhibit and didn’t long to sneak over the top just for a few minutes (or, okay, in … Continue Reading Mobbed By Lemurs At The Exotic Animal Petting Zoo!
Okay, I really want to hate the Mitsui Memorial Museum (because see below) but they keep putting on shows like this. The idea behind “Amazing Craftsmanship!” is to pair mad … Continue Reading Obsession, Thy Name Is This Exhibit
Went to check on whether the cosmos were blooming yet at Hama-Rikyu Teien garden last week and discovered that the lovely fields of gently nodding multicolored blooms I remembered were looking … Continue Reading Who Knew There Was A Butterfly Season In Tokyo?
All art, all night long. That’s the idea behind Roppongi Art Night, and although past years have been a bit meh, this year it was totally worth staying out late! … Continue Reading Roppongi Art Night 2017
In the I-totally-don’t-need-this-but-am-strangely-compelled-to-buy-it-anyway category, these square fruit balloons are a quirky modern take on kami fusen, a cheap, Meiji-era toy. Of course, in true ultra-Japanese style, they’re made of paper! If … Continue Reading Square Fruit Balloons
The Giant Gundam is finally back! And it does not disappoint! I was super sad when I heard that the old giant robot outside the DiverCity shopping mall in Odaiba … Continue Reading Giant Gundam Is BACK!
It’s not often that I walk through an art show where each piece is more surprising and delightful than the last, but Jason Freeny’s “Plastic Surgeon” exhibit at the Megumi … Continue Reading The Secret Innards Of The Catbus And Other Shocking Revelations
These Japanese amaryllis bloom once a year for only a few days, right at the fall equinox. If you move fast, you can still catch the higanbana in their full … Continue Reading Where To See Magical Red Autumn Lilies In Tokyo
Okay, usually biting a dog butt would not be top of my to-do list, but I’d totally make an exception for these so-cute-it-hurts shiba dango! Compared to other takes on … Continue Reading Shiba Dango!
Okay, is this a book lover’s ultimate fantasy, or what? A romantic read, dished up by a handsome young man with a talent for whispering sweet nothings in your ear … Continue Reading Let’s Go To The Crowdfunded Host Club!
Just when you need a little something to lift your wilted spirits, the dog days of summer fail to dish up a single Japanese flower extravaganza. Which is why I’ve … Continue Reading Flower Dream 2017
Don’t you just hate it when your kittehs get a touch of the walkabout? Well now you can do something about it. A quick prayer at the Tachikawa Suitengu Shrine … Continue Reading The Lost Cat Shrine
Still looking for that perfect souvenir to surprise your friends back home? Well, they certainly won’t be expecting this. Saw these at Don Kihote store in Shibuya. If you’d like … Continue Reading The Meat Washcloth
Last week I discovered Yamada Zenjido, an artist who pens haiku-like truisms paired with pitch-perfect drawings, and they are SO FUNNY…if you can read handwritten Japanese, that is. Fortunately, I … Continue Reading Hilarious Haiku About The Small Embarrassments Of Modern Life
So, everyone knows you can get kicked out of hot springs, public swimming pools, and water parks in Japan if you’ve got visible ink, even if it’s a teeny, tiny, … Continue Reading Why Are Tattoos Still Taboo In Japan? (Spoiler: It’s not because they think you’re a gangster)
I have to admit I was just the teensiest bit disappointed that the bowling salon actually only offers, well, bowling. I was all ready to sign up for “Mani-Pedi & … Continue Reading The Bowling Salon
Making my way back to Kamakura Station after tossing a few plates at the Dish-Breaking Shrine, I was walking through a totally normal-looking neighborhood when I chanced upon this. A … Continue Reading When You REALLY Hate Your Neighbors
When I first saw this gachapon machine filled with little plastic champagne towers, I thought WAT? Who needs a set of miniature, light-up, host club furniture? I mean, even though … Continue Reading The Host Club Vending Machine
Hanging out waiting for a train this spring, my intrepid fellow adventurer and I spotted THIS in a vending machine! Of all the unlikely tastes to come in a can, … Continue Reading Cream Puffs You Can…Drink
So, everybody knows about the cherry blossoms, and I bet you flower mavens even know about the glories of the plums, wisteria, azaleas and iris. But recently a bunch of … Continue Reading Secret Flower Seasons of Japan
This spring, the ever-impish kami-sama apparently thought I was in need of some sort of life lesson. Because every time I set out with a well-planned, perfectly-timed plan, it was like … Continue Reading The Dish-Breaking Shrine
Okay, I’m going to come right out and admit I don’t actually have a dog. You would, however, be forgiven for assuming that I was knee-deep in shiba inus, on account of I own a … Continue Reading Confessions Of A Shiba Stalker
The sticky rice balls I can handle. I could even get into the slightly gelatinous, traditional mitarashi topping that gets its brown from, uh, soy sauce. But I draw the line at nori. … Continue Reading Please Tell Me That’s Not Seaweed On My Ice Cream
Because what nuptial event could possibly be complete without… • Read a novel set in Tokyo
Every once in a while you discover a place where the photos that made you run to the nearest station and jump on godzilla-knows-how-many-trains to get there did not lie. Not even a … Continue Reading Endless Fields Of Blue
Yesterday as I was cutting through the grounds of Zojo-ji temple, I noticed that all the Jizo-sans had bright new hats. In all the time I’ve been going there, they’ve … Continue Reading New Red Hats
I’ve seen fruit for your patootie and warriors for your derriere, but this is the first time I’ve encountered top-of-the-food-chain predators for your butt. Am trying hard not to imagine the Japanese bathroom … Continue Reading A Leopard For Your Butt
Rose. Flavored. Yogurt. Let’s all agree that this one ought to have remained a fantasy. • Read a novel set in Tokyo
From mid-April to mid-May, it seems like there are bright pink bushes whipping by the train window everywhere you go in Tokyo, but there are a few special places that just … Continue Reading Where To See The Most Amazing Azaleas In Tokyo
But isn’t this the best fire escape EVER? I mean, it’s a SLIDE. (And a fast one too. I know. I was a childhood slide junkie.) If I lived here, I’d … Continue Reading I Never Thought I’d Be Excited About A Fire Escape
See, this is where tolerance will get you. Let them get away with putting ginger pickles and fish shavings on pizza, say nothing when your spaghetti comes topped with sea urchin … Continue Reading The Slippery Slope, Illustrated