Archive for November, 2006

A new sushi fraud

nigiriThe malicious intentions of "Ore ore fraud" are known to everybody in Japan. Still, many people are scammed by it; the average person can’t be strong like Osaka people.

Recently I heard a new kind of fraud is increasing. Actually I’ve read about it on people’s blog so often. It’s "sushi sushi fraud." Generally sushi sushi fraud is like this… One day a middle-aged guy with a white cook jacket and white helmet (typical sushi delivery costume) comes into an office around lunch time. He says, "Sorry, did you order lunch yet? My son got an order for 30 sets of sushi from the floor above, but he made a mistake. They ordered only 3 sets! Now I have 27 leftovers. Each package usually costs 980 yen, but I will give you a discount. It’s only 500 yen. Would you buy it?"

When it comes to Sushi delivery, we usually think of "Nigiri"; we don’t order roll, or actually it is pretty cheap to buy roll sushi at the store. Seeing the delivery man haste, office workers think the sushi will go bad quickly (which would be the case with Nigiri). And since it is exactly lunch time, people think it’s a good deal and buy the sushi. But when they open the package, they discover it is just roll and usually costs less than 500 yen at the store.

Funny story? But I could find the posts where people fell for the fraud easily here and here and more, even WTBW too! We can laugh at this and sound serious. But since the delivery man does not say "it’s Nigiri," I don’t think it can be fraud. What do you think?

related link
Sushi topic from Paris
Eating sushi in Tokyo? I recommend this.

RHS: Retired Husband Syndrome

This is apparently a common condition and has been on the Japanese news quite a bit.
Many married couples in Japan spend very little time together as the husband (“Salaryman”) leaves for work everyday at 7 and doesn’t return until gone midnight. This is especially true in Tokyo and is the case with most people in my company here: they have 2 meals a day, 12 noon and 12 midnight!


Everyone seems to be blogging about the Playstation 3 launch in Tokyo last Saturday.
This Kotaku report talks consoles being re-sold online at a big profit and homeless and Chinese people being paid to stand in line.
I’m not surprised though as it happens with a lot of events here. For Hanami (Cherry Blossom parties), groups often pay homeless people to spend all day guarding a prime location under the trees, before the group turns up in the early evening.

More links:
The Fans
Video of the launch chaos
Kotaku Round-up

紅葉:Autumn Leaves

In Kinugawa, just an hour from Tokyo on the Tobu express (Ikebukuro or Kita-Senju).
Enjoy them while they last!

Queue for Arcade Machine

These kids’ computer games are really popular, especially among young girls.

2 Wheels for a Girl

Japanese girls can ride a Motorbike and still look ladylike.

Fake Priests

Be careful. They may look like Priests and talk like Priests, but they aren’t!
Westerners in Japan are masquerading as Christian Priests for White Weddings, according to the BBC.

Actually I know a couple of guys who do this as a part-time weekend job and they make decent money from it.
The “Church” is fake, the Priest is fake, actually the whole Wedding is fake (they have to have a separate legal ceremony), so I guess there is no problem, as long as the love is for real…

This previous report from Captain Japan has more on the phenomenon.


The Japan Times published a great interview with our very own Joi Ito, where he talks about Blogging, free speech and doing business in Japan


I went out to buy some milk on Sunday morning and saw a dead body near the 4-storey office building next to our apartment. Some Police had half-covered him up with a plastic sheet.

There were Police on top of the building looking down to where he lay, so I presume that it was a suicide. By midday, there was no sign of what had happened and the event will go un-reported. With around 30,000 suicides per year in Japan (according to the W.H.O.), the vast majority male, this is sadly an all-too-common occurrence.
This morning a bunch of flowers and three cans of his favourite alcohol (beer and Chu-hi) were left out in remembrance.

Just an update on this: the family doesn’t believe it was suicide and persuaded the police to launch an investigation, so there are posters up about it now. Apparently he was seen involved in an argument with a group of people the night before.
I hope they find out what happened.

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