I don’t do Valentine’s Day. Let’s watch a video of Seungjae instead.

You are welcome. (^_^)

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Well, he got the long vowel on the first syllable right. That’s better than most. (^_^)

Our little Daebak from the KBS show The Return of Superman has just been to Ōsaka with his family. Of course, his mum couldn’t resist posting this brief clip of the toddling celebrity trying to enunciate his present whereabouts.

#오사카 #사요나라👋 #osaka #さようなら

A post shared by Sujin☆ (@jeshia2) on

Incidentally, it’s been 10 years and 10 days since I published my very first post on this blog. I say, we’ve been around for quite some time, now haven’t we?

Cheerio.

Travel expands one’s horizons … and one’s vocabulary

Hyouka_12_22

Holidaying in Japan can be quite the educational exercise, and it often requires no more than switching on the telly and tuning into the morning news. (A good habit to have whilst getting dressed for another day of sightseeing, if only to learn what the weather will be like.) In the course of the viewing, one tends to pick up certain words that keep being repeated due to their increased relevance at a particular moment in time.

For example, I was in the country during the 2014 Winter Olympics, and the pervasive coverage of Japan’s performance in Sochi led me to learn a new word: senshu (選手), in this context used as an occupational honorific after competing athletes’ names (e.g., Hanyū-senshu). A rather severe raft of snowstorms also took place during that period, frequent news reports of which added another word to my arsenal: ōyuki (大雪), referring to heavy snow.

I’ve just returned from my 12th holiday in Japan, accompanied not merely by bags of socially obligatory omiyage and a rather bad head cold probably caught from a fellow commuter on the train somewhere, but by yet another fresh item for my linguistic catalogue: jikidaitōryō (次期大統領), meaning “president-elect”.

I don’t think I need even mention the chap whose dominance of news reports during my stay has drilled this new word into my head. (^_^)

Fewer, fewer, and fewer still

According to the Yomiuri Shimbun (via The Japan News), Japan’s population dipped for the first time since modern census records began nearly a century ago.

I could spin out a lengthy discourse on the implications of this long-term slide … but I shan’t. Have a look at that article – it’s not just about the total population but also the demographic makeup of Japan, which makes for interesting reading – and spare a moment to ponder the repercussions, upon the anime/manga industry amongst others.

He just had to say ひよこ. Dash it all to heck.

Awww, c’mon Yūto-kun. You just had to say “hiyoko”, didn’t you.

Not something I’d expected to hear whilst watching the latest (legally) subtitled episode of The Return of Superman.

Thanks, or should I say no thanks, for reminding me of one of my favourite pastries, a delightfully sweet and delectable – not to mention cute – speciality of Fukuoka, something that I’m not likely to taste again until my next trip to Japan.

Sure, that’s just a couple of weeks from now, but man … you’ve just made the wait seem so much longer.

I’ll probably end up toting a small fortune’s worth of the stuff when I come home, to help tide me over until the next return visit. And it will be all Yūto’s fault.

I don’t care a whit about Love Live or Hanayo…

…but rice in a bottle? Sold!

No, seriously. Rice is only ever sold in bags where I come from, but a large plastic bottle seems like the perfect vessel for storing a batch of top-grade Uonuma Koshihikari. I can simply pour out as much as I need and cap off the rest. Easy peasy.

And I don’t give a hog’s bristle as to whose face they plaster over the label. I’m too busy ogling those perfect, beautifully formed grains inside to even notice.

Incidentally, I’ve tasted Uonuma Koshihikari a couple of times during my trips to Japan. Good quality, sure, and far better than the usual type I eat back home, but not all that different from regular Koshihikari. I wouldn’t bother paying a premium for it.

Okay, random lunatic spiel over. (What was I even talking about?) Good night.

Yes, I am sorry to report that they’re still selling it

Remember that gut-busting, heart-massacring, quadruple-bypass-on-a-plate menu item that KFC released in the Philippines a few days ago?

Until a few hours ago, I could have laughed it off as a slightly early (or horribly late) April Fools’ Day joke…

…but that ceased to be a viable option when I saw an image of the beast on the menu of a KFC restaurant in my neighbourhood. (Yes, this is new – I snapped the picture earlier today.) It seems the, er, thing has graduated from the initial 2-day trial phase and is now seeing a much wider – perhaps longer term – release.

Double Down Dog - of death

But wait, it gets better! Or worse, depending on your sense of humour and the state of your arteries. Shift your eyes downwards just a wee bit and see what they’re advertising directly underneath that thing.

As the parody persona of a certain Eastern philosopher might say: “Man who eat double down dog is dead man.”

And in case you were wondering, I had bibimbap for lunch instead … which is why I regret to report that I’m still very much alive.

Cheerio.