Archive for the ‘Globalization’ Category

Christmas Apparel

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Even the local fauna seems to have adapted christmas ;)

Happy holidays!

Internationalization in karaoke!!

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I was out with my best friend on Friday going to karaoke. The place is our favorite, because the price is reasonable and clean. During the weekdays, you only need to pay 750 yen for as much you want between the hours of 10.00a.m. ~18.00p.m.

I had lunch at my friend before going to karaoke, so we started sometime before 2.00p.m., so we ended up singing for four and twenty minutes and paid only 750 yen!!! People in the States are more familiar with karaoke bars, but in Japan we have private rooms for everyone, even for a single person. Singing four hours and twenty minutes between two of us was pretty good work out, but my friend told me that her friends went to karaoke 12 hours straight!! I have done seven hours, so 12 hours singing is just crazy!!

Another thing I realize about karaoke in these days is that karaoke is becoming more international. Couple of years ago, there were only songs of Japanese and some English, but lately there are songs in Korean, Chinese and Filipino in addition. Unfortunately I can only sing in Japanese and English, but this is a good indicator of how Japan is slowly opening up for international people, or it can just be the karaoke market finds that this is a good field that they can invest including more songs with different languages. I wonder what will be the next language to be added to the karaoke books… I feel it could be Russian as there are quite few Russian people coming to Japan, or maybe French?

What do you think the next language to be added? Or what do you want to be added??

Gasoline cost in Japan

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I don’t own a car, so I usually don’t pay attention to the cost of gasoline. But with the intense debate about climate change this spring here in Japan, and the Iraq war not going very well at all, gasoline cost is a major issue that affects everyone. Also, there is the serious issue of “peak oil” – the fact that fossile fuels are getting less economical to pump up from oil fields around the world. Guys, we are running out of oil. A global decline in oil production will have serious social and economic implications…

Today, in Japan, gas costs about 130-140 yen per liter. That is around $4.50 a gallon. Compared to Northern Europe, that is a bit less: The Netherlands appears to have the highest cost due to taxes at $6.73 a gallon at the pump. The US average is $3.20 a gallon (Note that US taxes on gas have gone down from 32% to 14% since 2000 – who is paying for the war in Iraq?).
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