This is one of the funniest clips I have seen. The part at 50sec kills me:
11 years agoBeenova
I used to hear how the Midwest was used as a test market for products from big companies (ie. new sandwich at McDonalds, new sodas, etc.) but my time in Japan has showed me differently. At least when it comes to Pepsi. In my time here (4 years as of October 1st) I have seen 4 distinct variations of Pepsi that I may never see back home.
They have been: Pepsi Red (cinnamon Pepsi), Pepsi Carnival (orange Pepsi that someone described as a cross between orange soda and sprite), Iced Cucumber (before you say "yuck" it was actually pretty good) and now Blue Hawaii Pepsi (the bottle says Pineapple and Lemon, but I mostly just taste the pineapple).
One thing I need to say is that all of them have been at least "good" while Pepsi Carnival was quite good (my personal favorite of the 4). So whoever is coming up with these drinks at least knows what they are doing.
The only problem here is that once you find something you like, don't expect to see it for very long. And don't expect it to come back. I haven't seen any of the previous 3 Pepsis mentioned make a comeback. So what I have to do is just enjoy the Blue Hawaii while its here and then see what they come up with next year. Oh and bring some back with me when I go home on vacation so others can experience this unique drink that they will probably never see otherwise.
Looks like another franchise has been revitalized. This is due to come out on the PC/360/PS3.
12 years agoBeenova
As my 3rd Summer in Japan blazes on, I feel compelled to talk about the weather here.
Let me first start off by saying that I'm not a big fan of hot weather. Well... it would be more accurate to say I am not a fan of hot and humid weather. As my trips in Arizona years ago were pretty pleasant. Sure it was hot in the summer, but as everyone knows and forgive me for using such a cliche, "it is a dry heat". Some may scoff at such a line, and say "hot is hot" but I for one agree that there is a huge difference between hot/dry and hot/humid.
One of the very first Japanese phrases you will learn here when you experience your first summer is - mushi atsui (meaning hot and humid). You generally say this around others, pretty much the same way we would make small talk about the weather. If you want confirmation, you would say - mushi atsui desu ne! of which the response (if the person does agree that it is hot/humid) would be - so desu ne! This pretty much breaks down into - It sure is hot and humid. - of which the response would be more like - sure is!
When I first arrived in Japan, it was the beginning of October. So I dodged the bullet on experiencing summer in Japan when I first came here. I had been here on vacation before that, but it was around late April/May then. So I did not know what a Japanese summer was truly like. My friend would tell me about how hot it was going to be in the summer here, but as I thought the summers in Ohio were quite hot and humid I wondered, how bad could it really be. Of which his response was "you have no idea".
So, now that summer is upon us again. I have gotten e-mails or talked with my dad back in Ohio and have been told how hot it is back home. I think I chuckle (or sigh) a little inside when someone from Ohio tells me how hot it is back home. Because as my friend told me "they have no idea".
The only other place where I think I have felt the same kind of heat combined with humidity was in Florida, and anyone that's been down to that evil state in the summer knows what being inland in the summer feels like. Even a friend that lives here, who lived in Miami will still agree that it is hot here.
One major factor that contributes to the crazy heat is the blazing sun. It honestly feels like the sun is about 3x closer here than it was back home. Or as a friend from Germany put it - the sun feels like a warm globe back home, but here it feels like a laser beam. I couldn't put it better myself. Step out into the sun and it will beat you down. I see why the Japanese children make the sun red when they draw it, though I would also add horns while wielding a flaming pitchfork.
But not all is bad. The winters here are wonderful. The temperature never seems to get down into that bone-chilling, 1/2 hour to warm up your car temperature. At least not where I am at. Sure it gets cold some days, but I have no winter coat (just a leather jacket that seems good against wind) and I've been just fine for 3 winters here. I think I could count the times it has snowed on 2 hands, and the longest it actually stayed on the ground could have been 1 hour (and it was quite a light dusting). So I really enjoy the winters here. I don't miss the step outside and have the wind rip through me cold of back home.
Falls and Springs are nice as well. But it takes a while for Fall to get to the point where I like it. Whereas back home, towards the middle-end of Sept. the weather was finally getting into what I like (around 50-60). Here, since it is so much warmer, it takes it a bit longer to cool down to the point I like.
Spring brings with it the rainy season, which isn't so bad, but it cranks up that humidity. And Spring also has the cherry blossoms, which are beautiful. If you live in Washington D.C. you know what I mean.
12 years agoBeenova
Most casual readers of Japanese life have undoubtedly read at least something on the public transit system in major Japanese cities, which is almost always Tokyo. Usually these are gaijin horror stories designed to show others that don't live in Japan how truly populated Japan is and to shock the casual observer. In some cases, these assessments are correct. Japan's major cities are indeed quite populated, and invariably this leads to very populated trains and subways.
My visit to Tokyo in Spring during Golden Week showed me a glimmer of how crowded trains can get in Tokyo. Where there is nothing to grab onto and as the train sways and moves, you are rocked back and forth with the tide of people sandwiched together. It can be an unsettling experience if you have never ridden a crowded train before. Though a short time in Japan will make you surprisingly accustomed to things that you would have never thought you could get used to.
But I digress... My intent with this journal entry was not to go into detail with the Japanese public transit system and its inner-workings, but to go into my personal experiences with it.
Let me first start off by saying that when I first arrived in Japan, I was a clean-shaven average looking redheaded American. But as my head has quickly decided to speed up my transformation into Jean Luc Picard, I have been obliged to keep my head shaved (God has fortunately blessed me with a round head, and for that I am indeed thankful). Another factor that makes this decision easy is the extreme heat and humidity of summer in Japan. So for most of my life in Japan now, I've been a shaved head bald American with a fire red goatee. The only reason I grow any hair on my head now is due solely to being lazy. It can be a process to shave one's head and involves me putting shaving cream and shaving my head twice to "get all the hair" and this is followed by using an electric razor to get the spots I missed with the razor. I don't mind so much, cause at this point I like having a shaved head, but it still generally takes me around 1 hour. So I usually shave every 2-3 weeks.
Anyway, to get the trains part of the story. Now that I have a shaved head, red goatee, and have bulked up some since coming to Japan I have made an interesting observation about my train rides, and trips through train stations.
Getting bumped into on trains, and in stations is a common place thing in the major cities. You wouldn't make it too long if you wanted to fight everyone that ever bumped into you. It's just the way of life here, and you either get used to it, move out to the countryside or go back home. There's no use getting angry, because it's how it is, it is nothing personal. Japan's major cities are crowded places, so you better accept it.
What I have noticed myself though is that when I first got here and looked quite unthreatening, I got bumped into quite a lot like everyone else. Though once I had gotten some more size, had a shaved head, and this fire red goatee to go with it, I've noticed that I rarely get bumped anymore. Though women will still bump into me. Probably figure "he won't do anything to me" and they are 100% correct. I wouldn't. The men however seem to not bump into me much anymore, or not as much as I used to get bumped. I find it quite humorous personally. I guess now I look like someone that might "lose it" at any second and start throwing punches. Which anyone that has ever known me for any length of time will tell you is not me. Not a violent person in the slightest. Even in situations where you expect to get bumped, I've noticed that I don't get it. As in exiting the train and heading for the stairs. There are so many people going towards the stairs at the same time, that a little bumping can be expected. But it seems rare anymore that I will get a bump, or if I do, it will probably be light, instead of something shouldering past me. Again, I figure that people see me and think "uh oh, if I bump him he may lose it and go off on me".
I doubt this gives much insight to life in Japan for people, but maybe it's a small window into my world here that someone will find slightly interesting.
12 years agoBeenova
A friend of mine showed me a blog written by a very insightful, articulate chap about his life here in the Land of the Rising Sun. If anyone reading this is interested in reading more insights into life and work here, I would recommend checking it out.
The author has at this point stopped making new entries because the blog became just too time consuming (among other things), of which I totally understand. He has other reasons as well, but he is keeping the blog up for a little while so check it out if you have some time. You'll also see from his last entry why he has stopped posting.
What I found so funny/interesting about his blog is how true it is for me personally. For others it may seem like just funny quips and observations, but for those of us that are living the life here it is far more meaningful and rings so true in many areas. There are just some things that I wouldn't have really "got" until actually living here for years. His blog is a great window into what to expect if someone planned on moving to Japan and working/living here.
And with that , carry on my wayward sons.
I'm surprised no one has mentioned it here already, but in case you didn't read it or see the news, DMC4 will now be coming to the Xbox 360 and PC.
I know it's started some odd flame wars at least on another site. Which I don't get. It's business, plain and simple. I think some people go overboard with their diehard attachment to 1 system. People seem to take it personally, with one person saying something along the lines of 'I may never buy another Capcom game'. Again, I don't get it. Business is business, and this decision makes sense from a profit standpoint. Maximize profits by reaching the largest auidence possible. Not rocket science.
I think part of it is that once a game goes multi-platform people lose their "AH HA! I have this game and you don't, nah nah nah nah nah!" Just all seems so childish to me. We've become so obsessed with the hunks of plastic that play the games instead of the games themselves. I never remember this "my console is better stuff" back in the NES/Master System days. You were just happy to try out new games on your friend's system that you didn't own.
Ok, sorry for rambling. Anyway, wanted to let eveyone know this news.
12 years agoBeenova
Alright, I've been a bit too lazy at doing these journals lately, especially the ones about living in Japan. I'll admit it.
This time is about some misconceptions that people living in other places have when you tell them you are living in Japan.
One thing that gets assumed when you say you live in Japan, is that you are taller than everyone around you. That Japanese people are barely taller than Frodo. I would like to put the record straight and say this is not the case. While there are plenty of Japanese people shorter than I am (I'm a non-tall 5ft. 7in by the way), there are many Japanese people taller than I am. The way it seems to me, is that I am closer to the "average height" here, whereas I was on the shorter side in the States (I can't think of any of my friends that are shorter than me). You see less of the "giant people" that we see in the States, but even that you do see from time to time. A really tall American, say 6ft. 7in or taller would definitely stand out for their height, along with looking non-Japanese. But all these misconceptions about everyone here being tiny is off. Keep in mind that Japan has some pretty good eating habits in general. So as it was in the States, eventually the people are going to get taller than their parent and grandparents due to nutrition and environment. Now maybe I would find more of the hobbit-like Japanese people if I moved out the countryside, but I don't see these tiny folks much in Osaka. Sometimes yes, but not the nearly to the stereotype we have in the States.
Another funny one is that I think people have the impression that I live in a land of robots, vending machines, and just the coolest gadets known to man. Yes, there are a whole lot of vending machines around, but I haven't seen any that you can buy shoes/bras/cel phones at, but maybe I'm not looking in the right area. You will indeed find vending machines all over the place, which after you get used to it, is quite nice. Whereas in the States, putting a vending machine on the corner is just asking for it to get either stolen or at the least destoyed, here it is just a common everyday thing. All the ones I see though are either tea/soda/drink machines, or cigarette machines. Which brings up another interesting side note. I have never once seen a young punk teenager trying to buy smokes from the cigarette machines. I'm sure it happens, but I've never witnessed it myself. Which says a lot for the rules here and that people generally abide by them.
As for the minions of robots, they may grace the cover of tech magazines, but I do not personally have a robotic wife and buddy. I haven't seen Godzilla attack yet either, but I don't live in Tokyo, so I should be safe, unless Mothra decides to take a trip out here to Osaka. Darn flying monsters!!
One assumption (remember what assuming does) is that if you live in Japan, you are in the military. It's actually quite funny, because if you meet another American here, they assume your an English teacher. That does seem to be the common job that many Americans living here have or if they have been living here for a number of years, have done in the past.
Ok, that should be enough of my ramblings for now. I hope to do better at these in the future, and I hope they are interesting to at least someone out there.
12 years agoBeenova
Well I finally have Zelda (yeah I know I'm late to the party). Friend of mine tried to find me a Wii when he was back in the States but to no avail. He did; however, find me the GameCube version of Zelda: TP. So I am quite happy. From what he was telling me, it was sold out everywhere (he was in L.A. by the way). I guess the EB Games he went into had 1 copy left, behind the counter. Whew!
I'm very much looking forward to playing this one. Zelda is in my top 4 series' of all time (with RE, SH and LoK). I remember when I was 11 or 12 (memory sucks, but if it came out in '86, then I was 11) getting the game new (back when the original was the "new" Zelda). My stepdad took me to go get it, then he took me with him to where he worked. I remember looking at the manual, so you know it was torture to sit there with Zelda and have to wait til you get home to play it. Well it was a school night and I think we got back after 1am (I doubt mom would have been happy with my stepdad if she was awake). I popped it in for a while, then went to bed. I'm sure the next day of school I was worthless, and I bet as soon as I got home I played it some more (unless I was made to eat).
And now, all these years pass and Zelda still holds that special magic for me. I'm sure part of it is nostalgia, but the series by in large is almost always top notch.
Good thing I have a long vacation coming up. Last day of work is the 29th, then I'll be off until the 9th of January (before you get jealous, remember you have off for Christmas and I have to work). So 10 days off in a row. Plenty of time to play some more Gears of War and Zelda. Also, a friend is visiting from Ohio and he leaves on the 1st. So it will be the last weekend I get a chance to hang out with him until I go back home probably sometime next Summer.
It doesn't really bother me that it's not the Wii version. Sure it would be great to have a Wii and play Zelda too, but I'm just happy to have Zelda.
This is indeed a good time to be a gamer! Any time a new Zelda comes out, it's always good! Now I just have to keep my fingers crossed that Silent Hill 5 comes out on the 360.
13 years agoBeenova
Why in the heck do I keep seeing these weird percentages in people's profiles? I'm sure you know the ones I mean:
>>98% of teenagers does or has tried pot. If you are one of the 2% that hasn't, copy and paste this in your profile
>>98%of teenagers say "I Love You" and don't mean it. If you are one of the 2% that does mean it, then copy and paste this in your profile
>>92% of teenagers has moved on to rap. If you are one of the 8% thats still into real music, copy and paste this in your profile
Umm, I don't know about all of you, but this doesn't take much brain power to see that these percentages are a bit HIGH (well, 98% of the percentages have tried pot, so I guess that makes sense).
I don't know who conjured these percents up, but people really need to stop putting them into their profile. Or at least give it some thought before you do.
Let's have a little breakdown of each one and see why they are assinine.
1. 98% of teenagers does or has tried pot. If you are one of the 2% that hasn't, copy and paste this in your profile
- You know, I'll tell ya the truth, I did smoke pot, and plenty of it. But 98% of teenagers? Come the f on! What reject thought people would swallow this insane stat... oh wait, people ARE swallowing it, or smoking it, since everyone is. Think about it people. This says "98% of teenagers". Did you read that? See how sweeping that is? It doesn't say "American teenagers", it just says "teenagers". So you are trying to tell me that 98% of the kids in the nether regions of bumble f Egypt know what pot even is? And what about the Middle Eastern countries, or in Singapore where the punishments would be extreme?? Even if you did say it was "98% of American teenagers" I still would say NO F'IN WAY!!! 98% of the teenage population?? Come on.
2. 98%of teenagers say "I Love You" and don't mean it. If you are one of the 2% that does mean it, then copy and paste this in your profile
- Ugh! I am no big fan of teenagers, but this one is just insulting to them all. I knew what "I love you" meant as a teenager. And while yes, I have a better grasp of the meaning of love now, I still loved my parents when I was 13-19. I didn't just magically start "really" loving people when I turned 20.
3. 92% of teenagers has moved on to rap. If you are one of the 8% thats still into real music, copy and paste this in your profile
- This is just sigh-tastic. If this was the case, then why would studio execs put out hardly anything else? The teenage audience is the major audience for music. So if this one was true, then you would think that at least 50% of the music you hear on the radio should be rap correct? Is it? Yeah, I didn't think so.
You want to cover your profile in assinine %'s??? Well I got some for you then, which are about as accurate as the ones everyone is already using.
>>99% of teenagers have been to the moon. If you are one of the 1% that hasn't had moon cheese, post this in your profile
>>82% of teenagers have skipped a rock across a pond 72 1/2 times. If you are one of the 18% that are too weak armed to get that many skips, then put this in your profile you panzy!
>>100% of teenagers have breathed. If you are one of the... oh wait, nevermind
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