Cowboy Bebop Metallic Rain
A former scaffolding worker was arrested for robbing an apartment in Shibuya by climbing down a drainpipe from the roof of the four-story building. The 36-year-old man had been dubbed Heisei no Musasabi (“flying squirrel of the Heisei Era”) for an earlier string of robberies.
Panasonic’s recent merger with Sanyo was apparently foretold last year in a manga called Senmu Shima Kosaku, which chronicles the travails of a fictional businessman who works for a company based on Panasonic.
A Japanese lunar exploration satellite has discovered that volcanic eruptions on the far side of the moon lasted 500 million years longer than previously thought.
A judge in Hokkaido told a man who received five years’ worth of disability payments by falsely claiming he was blind to stop “hamming it up” in court. The man, a 51-year-old resident of Sapporo, was sentenced to four years in prison.
The Japan Business Federation announced that ¥5.85 trillion could be saved each year if the country was divided into ten large geographical blocks instead of the current 47 prefectures.
Japanese people aged 65 or older who were arrested in 2002
Elderly Japanese arrested last year
Percent of Japanese people who feel it’s OK to transplant organs from brain-dead donors under the age of 15 with the consent of a third party, according to a Cabinet Office survey
Percent who said the donor’s will should be respected
Proficiency examinations administered by the Japan Interpreters’ Organization before the 35-year-old group declared bankruptcy earlier in the month
?On the Road
Police in Gifu apprehended a 9-year-old boy who was driving his family’s car. The tyke, who said he was on his way to visit grandma but had gotten lost, claimed he learned to drive from watching his father play an arcade game.
An 83-year-old man who has spent the past 20 years giving traffic-safety presentations around the country was arrested for speeding in Nagano.
A high school principal in Saitama is in hot water for covering up an incident in which four teachers on a field trip drank a beer while eating lunch at an okonomiyaki restaurant.
JR East announced that its oldest electric train-dubbed “Moomin” for its resemblance to the cartoon character-will make its final run in January. The locomotive has been in operation since 1936.
The whole tooth and nothing but the tooth
Have you heard the one about the guy who goes to a dentist for a cavity in a back tooth? The dentist-in-training working on him couldn’t reach that far back into the guy’s mouth, so he fills the tooth next to it!
Actually, it’s not funny. It’s one of numerous (presumably) true anecdotes in a story Shukan Gendai (Dec 6) headlines “Watch Out for Monster Dentists.”
“Young dentists coming into the field today,” sighs a veteran, “are incredible. You can’t take your eyes off them for a minute. You just don’t know what they’ll do next.”
It’s not just novices, Shukan Gendai warns. Older practitioners have a few quirks of their own that bear watching. Let the patient beware.
It’s hard to imagine how the youngsters survived dental school, if what the veterans say about them is true. Their alleged incompetence runs the gamut, from filling cavities to taking readable X-rays
Renting brand-name items getting popular
Japanese women might be famous in the world for being the most obsessed over brand-name bags and accessories. Some of them travel abroad to take advantage of cheaper prices. However, amid the recession, some women are adopting a more cost effective consumer behavior-borrowing brand-name items for limited use and time, which is a U.S. business model.
“Second-hand brand-name items are now widely accepted in Japan as online auction and recycling companies are increasing,” says Mitsue Iwata, president of Newell Corp, whose “Cariru” service lends brand bags and jewelry items. “Some of our customers live in residential areas for relatively rich people. We even ship our items to families of politicians. We imagined that those who cannot afford to buy brand items would make us of our service at first.”