Japanese Photographer Teaches Lonely Guys How to Use Their Right Hand as a Girlfriend. It’s Not What You Think!

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There’s no shame in being single, but if you’d like your friends and acquaintances to think you’re in a loving relationship, you can follow the example of Keisuke Jinushi, a young Japanese photographer who has mastered the art of making his right hand the perfect photo girlfriend.

Being single can be pretty uncomfortable, especially when all your friends are in relationships and can’t seem to shut up about their perfect girlfriends and the good times they have together. Of course, that’s not the case of Keisuke Jinushi, the guy in the photos below. He obviously has a very caring girlfriend who loves to feed him delicious treats, wipe the corners of his mouth of ketchup or grab his mouth in a very affectionate manner. She’s the one who took the photos, so she must be real, right?  No, not really. It was Keisuke himself who took the photos, and that’s actually his own right hand feeding his mouth. But why would anyone do something like that? Apparently, the talented photographer just wanted to share his “selfie” tricks to show everyone just how easy it is to share a romantic moment even if they’re sharing it with themselves.

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ECO-Cycle – Tokyo’s Amazing Underground Bicycle Storage System

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Tokyo is such a crowded place that even finding a place to park your bicycle can be a daunting task. But leave it to the Japanese to find a genius solution to this growing space problem. The ECO-Cycle Park is an automated bicycle storage system buried 11 meters under the city streets that can hold up to 200 bikes.

Although Japan is one of the world’s leading car manufacturers and its public transportation system is probably the most advanced on the planet, the bicycle is still a very popular means of getting around in the busy traffic. Unfortunately parking spaces are at a premium, and owners are often forced to leave them on the sidewalk where they become obstacles for pedestrians. To solve this problem, Japanese company Giken Seisakusho, which specializes in tidal and flood protection systems, created ECO-Cycle, a series of five underground storage bicycle storage facilities where owners can safely “park” their bikes in just 8 seconds. The buried cylindrical structures are only seven meters wide, but deep enough to safely store up to 200 two-wheel vehicles each.

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Smartphone Panties Protect Your Handheld’s Private Parts

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There are plenty of smartphone covers and screen protectors out there, but they all leave your phone’s most thumbed area, the home button, exposed. That’s where the stylish smartphone panties or pantsu come in. They stretch over the base of the device and cover it private parts.

If you haven’t figured it out already, these cheeky accessories were invented in Japan, by the world’s largest toy-maker, Bandai. They lacks any kind of functionality, and actually make it really hard to operate your phone, but Japanese teens thought they were cute and snatched them up quickly when they first hit the market back in march. Following the SmartPants’ success, Bandai has recently launched a new range of silicone smartphone underwear, featuring all kinds of patterns, from animal print to banana and Mount Fuji. There are also a variety of models, from skimpy bikinis to jockstraps and briefs. The stretchy gadget undies are made of silicone to fit most smartphone models and cost ¥200 ($2) a piece. You can find them in Gashapon machines (Japanese vending machines) across Japan. If you’re interested, sets of 7 panstu are available on the J-Box online store for $38.50. Kind of expensive for a useless accessory, but they’re guaranteed to make your phone stand out.

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Some People Walk Their Dogs, Cornman Walks His Fresh Produce

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It’s not every day you get to see people dragging vegetables on a leash in the street. Unless you live in Japan, that is. Over the last year, photos of a well-dressed man walking all kinds of produce through Tokyo like they were pets have been surfacing on various social networks. Known as “Cornman”, he has become one of the human attractions of Japan’s capital city.

Until recently, no one really knew who Cornman was or why he was walking produce on a leash. The first known photo of him dragging an ear of corn outside a subway station was tweeted in May of 2012, and ever since then people started sharing pics of the elusive character with all kinds of produce, from cauliflower to radishes. There was a lot of speculation surrounding Cornman and the motives of his bizarre habit. Some people said he was crazy, others that he was just looking for attention, and there were those who claimed he was the loser of a batsu game (a competition or a bet where the loser has to do something embarrassing), but no one knew for sure. Then, a few days ago, Cornman appeared on a Japanese TV show and talked about himself and his produce pets.

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Japanese Universities Install Anti-Socializing Cafeteria Tables

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At the request of students who wanted to avoid lunchtime socializing, Japanese universities in Kyoto and Kobe have replaced regular tables with so-called “lonely seats” featuring 50-cm dividers in the middle.

In most cultures, going to lunch with friends or co-workers is a great way to take your mind off the job and relax, but it seems that’s exactly what the students at Kyoto University are trying to avoid. They are busy people who don’t always have time to sit around and make small talk with their peers, so in order to avoid this kind of uncomfortable situations, they’ve asked the university for a practical solution. There are always empty tables where they could eat their meals in peace, but according to one 22-year old engineering student ”If you are sitting at a big table by yourself it’s like you don’t have any friends and that is embarrassing.” So to solve this predicament, the university replaced the regular cafeteria tables with “bocchi seki” or “lonely seats” that have an opaque divider across the middle so the person on the other side can’t see you slurping your noodles or engage in a conversation.

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Japan’s Long Breath Diet – A Breath of Fresh Air in the Weight-Loss Business

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What would you say if I told you losing those extra pounds is as easy as taking a nice long breath and exhaling for just 2 minutes a day? Only it’s not me who is saying it, it’s Miki Ryosuke, a Japanese actor turned dieting guru and inventor of the famous Long Breath Diet.

Miki Ryosuke discovered the Long Breath Diet completely by accident. He was practicing breathing techniques to ease back pain, but noticed he was losing a lot of weight, which eventually amounted to 28 pounds and 5 inches in 50 days. Realizing the potential of his discovery, Ryosuke came up with a series of more effective ways of breathing in and exhaling, and created the now famous Long Breath Diet. The name is a bit misleading, because his weight-loss techniques have little to do with dieting and more with exercising. Basically, you have to have a certain posture, inhale through the nose for three seconds and than exhale aggressively through the mouth for seven seconds, while using your whole body to push out all the air. Apparently, repeating the process for 2 to 5 minutes every day will help you lose weight, or breath away the extra pounds, if you will.

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Japanese Surgically Alter Their Palm Lines to Change Their Fortunes

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Palmistry, the art of predicting the future by reading palm lines, has always been very popular in Japan, only now modern day believers are taking matters into their own hands by using plastic surgery to alter or extend their life, love and success lines, and hopefully change fate.

Do you want to live a long and healthy life, find the man/woman of your dreams or win the lottery? Changing your fortunes may seem impossible, but an increasing number of Japanese are confident it’s as easy as altering your palm lines through plastic surgery. A reporter from The Daily Beast sat down with Takaaki Matsuoka, a plastic surgeon at the Shonan Beauty Clinic, who has so far performed 20 of these palm-line altering surgeries. Matsuoka knew nothing about palmistry until two years ago, when a client walked into his office and asked him to change some of her palm lines. Unsure he could pull off such a procedure, the doctor started searching through medical journals and found it was already practiced in Korea. He studied the methods and after the patient confirmed what she wanted altered, he performed the surgery for ¥100,000 ($1,000). It turned out alright, and since then 37 clients have had their palm lines changed or added at the Shonan Beauty Clinic alone.

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Curious Eats – Tokyo’s Legendary Black Hot Dog

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Japan is known for its selection of weird foods, and today we can add one more item to the ever-growing list. The Black Terra Hot-Dog is one of the most popular fast-food delicacies sold in the Akihabara district of Tokyo. It’s over 30 centimeters long and looks like it’s been cooked a few hours longer than necessary.

Black hamburgers have been around for about a year now, ever since Burger King launched its Premium Kuro Burger in Japan. It has black buns and dark ketchup, but the meat patty and vegetables retain their natural colors. But the people over at Vegas Premium Hot-Dogs, in Akihabara, Tokyo decided to one-up the giant fast-food chain by creating a food item that is entirely black as charcoal. Vegas was already famous for the size of its delicious hot-dogs, which span over 30 cm in length, but ever since they introduced the Black Terra Hot-Dog, in March, their popularity has grown even more. You would expect clients to be turned off by the rubber-like sausage, but apparently people who see this delicacy advertised on the billboards in front of the fast-food joint just can’t resist the urge to try it.

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Slimy Facials – Japanese Salon Uses Live Snails as Beauty Treatment

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Snail slime is believed to have an anti-ageing effect on human skin and beauty product companies have been using as an ingredient for around two decades. Now, a Japanese beauty salon is taking things to a whole new level by offering a treatment where live snails are put directly on clients’ faces to cover them in slime.

For a lot of women, having snails crawling on their faces is the stuff of nightmares, but the owners of Tokyo-based beauty salon Ci:z Labo are hoping some will actually be willing to pay for it. According to Ci:z Labo spokeswoman Manami Takamura, snail slime removes old cells from a person’s skin, moisturizes it and treats sun burn effects. The treatment, called the Celebrity Escargot Course, costs Y24,150 ($241) and involves four snails bought from an organic snail breeder in Japan and kept in sterile conditions. An assistant gently places the snails on the patient’s previously washed face and let’s them crawl freely. If they get too close to the person’s mouth, eyes or nostrils, she picks them up and places them back on an area where they feel less uncomfortable. The slimy facial is a central part of this 60-minute treatment and is followed by a series of massages, masks and electrical pulse machines using creams infused with snail mucus which ensure the secretions penetrate the skin properly.

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Japan’s Hand Canon Fireworks Look Insanely Dangerous

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Out of all the impressive fireworks celebrations held annually all around Japan, Tezutsu Hanabi is by far the most eye-catching. Experienced masters hold large bamboo tubes filled with black powder in their arms as flames gush out towards the sky. Did I mention they explode at the end?

Tezutsu hand cannons are believed to have originated as a form of long-distance communication smoke devices called Noroshi. With the introduction of smokeless gun powder, these Civil War era tools started being used as fireworks and later as a form of prayer at Yoshida Shrine, in Toyohashi. The Tezutsu Hanabi fireworks display has been carried out for the last 300 years, as part of the Gion Festival, attracting tourists from all over Japan and beyond with columns of flames up to 20 meters-high piercing the night sky. Seeing dozens of men walking around nonchalantly with 80-cm-long, 10-cm-wide bamboo cylinders filled with over three kilograms of ignited black powder is indeed quite the spectacle.

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The Future of Music – Japan’s New Robot Rock Band

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They are called Z Machinese and they are about to take the Japanese music world by storm. This unique rock band is made up entirely of futuristic automatons able to play guitar, drums and keyboards better than any human.

Z Machines is the brainchild of Yoichiro Kawaguchi, an IT professor at the University of Tokyo, and mechanical designer Naofumi Yonetsuka, who wanted to liven up the music scene by creating something futuristic and exciting. So they created Ashura, a six-armed drummer who can actually play 22 drums simultaneously and sounds like four people playing the drums at the same time, Mach, a metal-and-wire guitarist who uses 78 fingers and 12 picks allowing him to challenge even the most gifted human guitar players, and Cosmo, who is literally wired into his keyboard and shoots lasers from his eyes. Z Mazhines certainly sounds like a very impressive band, but can they really play a gig? They answered that question on Monday, when they teamed up with Japanese human duo Amoyamo, for an electrifying performance at one of Tokyo’s most popular night clubs.

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Japanese Shop Sells Perfect Fruits as Luxury Items

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Tokyo’s Sembikiya Fruit Parlor looks like a luxurious jewelry store and the prices of the items on offer aren’t too far off either, only instead of diamonds and gold this place sells fruits. If you’re looking for perfectly shaped, delicious-tasting cantaloupes, apples, grapes or any other Japanese fruits, Sembikiya is where you’ll find them, but you’d better stop by the bank first, because they don’t come cheap.

In Japan, it’s customary to give high-quality fruits for formal occasions like weddings, business meetings or hospital visits. But we’re not talking about fruits you usually find at the local market or grocery store. Specialized fruit shops like Sembikiya sell only the rarest, most perfect products, grown in special conditions to ensure they look and taste as good as possible. Take the Yubari muskmelons, also known as Yubari King melons, priced at ¥15,750 ($160) for one, or ¥26,250 ($265) for two, at the exclusive Tokyo fruit parlor. That’s a small fortune for produce, wouldn’t you say? But these Japanese cantaloupes are pretty special. The Yubari King sold at Sembikiya only come from Shizuoka prefecture, where they get the most sunshine. They are grown in specially-designed greenhouses with air-conditioning and paper hats in the hot summer months, and heaters during wintertime. Farmers prune the less perfect fruits early on, leaving just one melon to ensure it gets the best flavor possible. A 12-pack of Queen Strawberries sells for ¥6,825 ($68), a box of perfect cherries costs ¥15,750 ($159), and a Senkai-ichi (Japanese for “world’s best”) apple will set you back ¥2,100 ($21). They might seem like outrageously-priced fruits to most people, but with 11 parlors opened in Japan, at Sembikiya business is booming.

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The Breathtaking Flower Hill of Hokkaido

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Home to nearly one million pink shibazakura flowers, spread over an area of 100,000 square meters, on a hillside overlooking the picturesqe town of Takinoue, the Higashimokoto Flower Park is a must-see attraction for flower lovers.

There are lost of impressive tourist destinations on Japan’s Hokkaido island, but the hillside flower park overlooking the town of Takinoue stands out as the most colorful. Every year, from early May to mid June, the hill is covered with a pink carpet of Moss Phlox flowers, commonly known as shibazakura. Winding paths lead visitors from the base of the hill to the very top where they are treated to a magnificent view of the surrounding sea of flowers. Higashimokoto Park was founded in 1956, with only a box full of shibazakura seeds, but a growing number of plants have been planted every year since, and today the pink flowers cover an area of over 100,000 square meters. During the month-long blooming season, the bright pink flowers fill the air with a sweet scent that complements the amazing view. At the height of the moss phlox season, locals hold an annual festival dedicated to the flowers, featuring all kinds of themed events, and stalls selling snacks and souvenirs.

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Japanese Man Completes 40,000Km Walk Around the World

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Masahito Yoshida, 32, recently returned to Shanghai, the city where he started his epic walk around the world, four and a half years ago. He walked a total of 40,000 kilometers across four continents carrying with him a two-wheeled cart full of baggage.

On New Year’s Eve, in 2009, Masahito Yoshida, an average Joe from the city of Tottori, Japan, set out from Shanghai to explore the world on foot. He had always wanted to travel and see all the wonders of the globe, but knew that doing it by plane or train, he would miss the small, sometimes isolated towns of the world, and the people that live in them. So he decided to walk instead. His first destination was Cape Roca, on the Portuguese coast, where he arrived in August of 2010, after covering 16,000 kilometers through central Asia and Europe. He then hopped on a plane to America, where he spent another year walking 6,000 km from Atlantic City, New Jersey to Vancouver, Canada. By the end of 2011 he exhausted most of his travel funds, so he started taking part-time jobs to finance the rest of his trip. From Canada, he flew to Melbourne, Southern Australia, and made his way north, to Darwin, then Singapore and back to Shanghai, China. During his memorable journey, Masahito worn off seven pairs of walking shoes.

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Japanese Prosthetic Expert Makes Fake Fingers for Ex-Yakuza Members

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Shintaro Hayashi, a prosthetics maker from Japan, is helping out former members of the Yakuza, or Japanese mob, by creating fake fingers they lost during their life of crime, so they can get normal jobs easier.

The Yakuza organized crime syndicates are renowned for their strict codes of conduct and organized nature. When a member causes serious offenses, he is required to perform a ritual known as “yubitsume”, which implies cutting off his own fingers as a form of atonement. Usually, the left pinkie is the first one to go, but repeated mistakes can cause a sloppy Yakuza to lose several digits. It becomes a stigma that signifies current or former membership in the Japanese mafia, and those who manage to leave their troubled past behind and become reformed citizens have a hard time finding jobs because of it. Most Yakuza try to conceal their missing fingers in public by keeping a fist, but there comes a time when they can’t hide their defects anymore, and that’s where prosthetics maker Shintaro Hayashi comes in. For the last 10 years, he has been creating fake fingers to mask Yakuza amputations.

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