Your red dress is waiting. love and leukemia and coming home

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Michiel “Mimi” Brandt passed away on July 9th 2012, from complications of her third bone marrow transplant. She was thirty years old. She was one of the founders of this blog and my BFF (Best Friend Forever). If you’ve read Tokyo Vice, you’ll find the following acknowledgement: “Michiel Brandt, the most cheerful researcher and two time leukemia survivor in the world. She’s inspirational”.

I’ll have to correct that.

“She was the most cheerful researcher and four-time leukemia survivor in the world. She was inspirational and the best friend I have ever had.”

Japan’s Designated Secrets Law: All you ever wanted to know but should be afraid to ask. (LOL)

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The Lawyer’s Federation of Japan points out that if a journalist or citizen were to stubbornly ask about SDS (specially designated secrets) to a government official that this could be construed as “instigation of leakage” and result in him/her being called in for questioning, their laptops and phones seized, possible arrest and conviction. Even when acting in the public interest, and without knowing they were seeking information about a “specially designated secret” an individual would still face up a year in prison or a fine under 300,000 yen.

Book Review: Tokyo Underworld–a classic on the dark side of Japan

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There are very few gaijin (foreigners) who know what happens on the dark side of the rising sun like Robert Whiting. Whiting is an American author and journalist living in Japan, one of the rare ones who has written great books published in both English and Japanese language after he first set foot in Japan [...]

Japanese rockers sing the truth about post-meltdown Fukushima. Is anyone listening?

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“We’re living in a material world. A radioactive material world, ” jokes the lead singer. “This isn’t the future we hoped for.” They released their second mini-album “Living in a Radioactive Material World” this year. The title song has the punch of early Clash, the vocals on the acoustic song, “アスノメ (the eye of tomorrow) are smoky, poignant and reminiscent of Marianne Faithful–if she had been a protest singer. The live recording of 打ち砕いて (Knock it down) has in the background the enthusiastic cheers from the Fukushima local high school kids, who find their despair voiced in the lyrics of the band.

Tokyo Vice: Interview with Jake Adelstein

The thing about the worst of the yakuza—and they’re not all evil—is that you can’t worry only about your own physical safety. There’s a chance that your friends or loved ones will be brutalized in your place. It’s certainly happened in Japan before, to other journalists. Even if you’re not terrorized physically, they can still ruin your life. Goto-gumi is a great intelligence-gathering organization, and extortion and blackmail are powerful tools to discredit someone or make them shut up—even Japan’s National Police Agency noted the group’s ability to use the media to silence their enemies. In the Goto-gumi’s case, they actually own a private detective agency. That’s not uncommon for organized crime groups in Japan, as is noted in the book. There are many yakuza groups that excel in collecting damaging information on cops and writers who get in their way. This summer in a police raid, the Aichi Police Department found the car registrations of several of their detectives in the offices of the yakuza. In other words, the yakuza know where the detectives live, and probably much more. That’s what makes them formidable entities—because if you cross them, they’ll expose your quirks, fetishes, weaknesses, indiscretions, and mistakes to the world. Failing that, they’ll find someone you care about and ruin their life.

Panties for Smart Phones Become Du Jour in Japan

If your cell-phone is naked, you’re totally behind the fashion curve. Since this spring over a million pure silicone panties were sold in Japan. Silicone may not sound like the most comfortable of lingerie materials but they weren’t your ordinary underwear; they were mini-panties, boxer briefs, special underwear made for smart phones. Naked phones are simply gauche now.

Bandai Co., LTD (Bandai), one of Japan’s biggest toymakers released the product SMART PANTS™ (スマートパンツ)in March of this year and found that their slightly ribald knickers had become a surprise hit.

The world is a dangerous place…because we don’t stand up to bullies.

The Troll. The Bully. Self-proclaimed journalist. Terrible nuisance.天の邪鬼

I will have to tell you that Tanaka-san and Iida-san are now well aware of your fucking bullshit. By all means, do go and tell your side of the story to them, motherfucker.
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, I heard that your daughter gives really good head… and so does your son.
Hey, I wanted to hear if your children are getting a good sleep because… when you get fired, and I get fired, you’re going to have to put your kids out of international school and into Japanese school and I’ll be waiting for them. (Troll, 2007)

Slight rise in birth defects in post-meltdown Japan; more study needed

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Former Nuclear Regulatory Commission Chairman Gregory Jaczko, when asked for his opinion on the current situation Monday (Japan time) said, “The Fukushima nuclear accident has released forces that no one can fully control. It will take decades to resolve it.”

In Fukushima, the kids aren’t all right, says documentary A2-B-C (Sept.14th)

The title comes from the code that is use to express the results of thyroid cancer screening in the medical world. The Japanese government vehemently denies any links to thyroid cancer in Fukushima children and the triple meltdown at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in March of 2011 and the film lets the viewer decide for themselves

TEPCO, Nuclear Disaster & Spaghetti-Os: Bad Deeds Get Rewarded

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In other words, it’s as if TEPCO measured the height of Jeremy Lin with only a 12 inch school ruler and proclaimed, “Mr. Lin is the world’s shortest basketball player.” Shunichi Tanaka, the head of the Nuclear Regulatory Agency said at press conference today stated, “I’m quite baffled by TEPCO’S total lack of any sense of crisis at the site. It’s unfathomable.”