Archive for April, 2010

Black Sugar on the Go!

What a coincidence. The other day, I happened to get the same omiyage (souvenir gift) from two different friends visiting from Japan. I’d understand if it was a pair of lacquer chopsticks or a folding fan — you know, cheesy traditional stuff they think Americans would enjoy — but on both counts it was a bag of black sugar! Now why in the world would people give me black sugar? We’re talking straight up sugar cubes.:

Well, after a little bit of net-sleuthing I found that black sugar (aka, kokuto, or what we call brown sugar in the U.S.) is a popular candy in Japan mainly because it’s one of the few nutritious sweets out there. It’s rich in calcium, iron, potassium, phosphorous and other minerals and, believe it or not, it has less calories than regular sugar!

Well, after a little bit of net-sleuthing I found that black sugar (aka, kokuto, or what we call brown sugar in the U.S.) is a popular candy in Japan mainly because it’s one of the few nutritious sweets out there. It’s rich in calcium, iron, potassium, phosphorous and other minerals and, believe it or not, it has less calories than regular sugar!

This particular bag ‘o sweetness is green tea-flavored. I have another sprinkled with kinako powder, which tastes like peanut butter. I know, it’s weird to bite into a cube of pure sugar, but when I think about it it’s much better than most things I put in my mouth. So now whenever I need a quick boost of energy, all I do is reach in my purse for a cube of black sugar!

Himawari

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April 27, 2010 at 2:20 pm Leave a comment

A New Way to Light Up Your Room

The seasons in Japan have distinct personalities, not just because of the heat and cold but because there’s so much to take in with each passing month. Winter calls for Christmas cake and an abundance of lights. Springtime sends people to picnic under the cherry blossoms. Summer is my favorite season because it’s all about fireworks.

So when Japanese people move away from Japan, I can only imagine how homesick they must be. That’s when a fireworks projector ($136) comes in handy!:

At the press of a button, the machine shoots out fireworks onto your living room wall. Sound effects set the mood as colorful streaks of light whizz to the ceiling. The machine, developed by Sega Toys, comes with five projection lenses, a handful of cartridges inscribed with different fireworks shapes, and a few blank sheets to customize your own show. Take a look:

The hokeyness is part of the charm. After all, what kind of simulation apparatus could ever compare to the real thing?

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
japanizmo, a Los Angeles based company, provides practical solutions for U.S. ? Japan business projects. Our experienced Japanese staff will support all phases of your business project to seize business opportunities and turn your vision into a reality. >> Learn more

April 20, 2010 at 2:36 pm Leave a comment

Watch out for Flying Pigs!

I just got this oddball gift from a friend in Japan. It’s called Pitamin, a squishy lil’ oinkster you throw at the wall when life stresses you out. Its name purposely sounds like ‘vitamin’ because its supposed to make you feel better — even as you batter it to death.

Pitamin is among a long line of Japan’s ‘feel-better’ products. It’s a silicone blob that feels like a water balloon except you can’t really pop it. Push it, pull it or even sit on it, this little piggy ain’t gonna lose its cool. Just watch this video:

At first, I was pretty skeptical about its stress-relieving properties. But as I got my hands on it and flung it against the wall I felt pretty damn good. I picked it up again and threw it at the door just as my annoying roommate walked in. **SPLAT!** I felt even better.

After a bit of searching, I found other versions of the toy that look like people. They’re all men and they’re made to represent your bosses at work. (Of course, this is a mere oversight since there are plenty of mean female bosses too.) What a great concept to have voodoo dolls that you don’t need needle pins for! ***\(^o^)/***

Himawari

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Thinking of doing business in Japan? We can make it easy for you!
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April 6, 2010 at 2:11 pm Leave a comment


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