Plain Talk


“Cool Japan” by Jake Akino

I live in the Philippines and my mother is Japanese and she would bring me to Japan twice a year when I was growing up, earliest I remember was 5 years old until age 20. She might have done it as an obligation but I think my Japanese grandfather wanted to see his “half” grandkid and would sponsor my visits to Japan. Either way, it became a tradition for me to be in Japan during Spring and Winter for a week or two. I would meet family, friends and other people we usually meet in Japan and there was both language barrier and culture shock for me when interacting with them but that didn’t stop me from learning something new, getting cultured and having fun.

When I was a teenager, hanging out in one of the major cities in the world was so cool. For anyone reading this who didn’t get to experience 90’s in Tokyo, you don’t know what you missed out on. 90’s in Tokyo was cool (I think 90’s anywhere was cool!). Now, it’s more conservative and very international. It has lost many things that made it a one of a kind place. Tokyo now reminds me of Hong Kong, a place I’ve been to a bunch of times, just being honest here, that’s not a good thing. When something reminds me of something else, it is usually becomes or because of a lower quality. I do not mean to offend anyone by mentioning this.

Fast forward to 2018. I’ve been going to Tokyo by myself, I still don’t speak Japanese and now hangout with more of the international crowd and trying to find a balance between doing the touristy stuff and the more local/cultural stuff. In a nutshell, it’s like never being satisfied with anything too Japanese or too Not-Japanese but the somewhat balance I found for this was accepting that Japanese culture is not for everyone so I think less of that and settle more for things I think I’d enjoy.

The Tokyo I remember is gone, it’s now become a very touristy place and an international city and there's nothing wrong with this but it washes away a lot of what makes it unique. When they oversell their culture for tourism and make things more “international”, it cheapens the experience of what it’s really like. I don’t like “Cool Japan” and the wave of things that made it what it is so I hope it’s just a bland phase. If I ever wanted to “be turning Japanese” or make believe that Katy Perry discovered Harajuku some years ago, all I have to do is watch “Lost in Translation” and head down to Taco Bell after walking pass the “crazy” Shibuya Crossing. This version of Tokyo is not for me.





Tokyo Fab


Tokyo 150 years Program - Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony 2018

Tokyo Metropolitan Government and Arts Council Tokyo (Tokyo Metropolitan Foundation for History and Culture) will hold Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony 2018 at two renowned locations in Tokyo in order to pass on this unique Japanese tradition and cultural entertainment both at home and abroad. Everyone is welcome including those not familiar with tea ceremony, tourists, and children. Various schools of tea will join Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony to help visitors feel the spirit of Omotenashi (Japanese hospitality) and casually experience Japanese traditional tea culture through various enjoyable programs that have attracted approximately 190,000 visitors in the past. Tokyo Grand Tea Ceremony is a loved and cherished Tokyo’s autumn tradition which is not to be missed.

October 13 & 14 @ Edo-Tokyo Open Air Architectural Museum (3-7-1 Sakura-cho, Koganei-shi, Tokyo(inside Koganei Park))
October 20 & 21 @ Hama-rikyu Gardens (1-1 Hamarikyu-teien, Chuo-ku, Tokyo)

For more information, please visit



Amezaiku is one of the traditional Japanese arts crafts. The candy is softened by heating to around 90 degrees C (almost 200 degrees F), and is finely crafted with bare hands and traditional Japanese scissors. Amezaiku is created by cutting, pulling, and bending candy which is attached at the top of stick. The technique of Amezaiku has been passed down over generations. However, because Amezaiku is a traditional subculture, there is no literature with detailed descriptions of the processes and skills involved. Don't miss the chance to experience the traditional technique of Amezaiku!

Reservation is required
Venue: 1F Hori bldg, 2-9-1 Hanakawado, Taito-ku, Tokyo (Closest Sta. Asakusa Sta.)
Hours: 10:30~18:00 Closed on Thursday.

For more information, please visit


What’s App With You?


Relax Rain

Having trouble sleeping lately? Why don't you try this app? Designed with simplicity in mind, Relax Rain is the simplest way to enjoy the relaxing and soothing sound of rain falling. Open up the app and sounds start playing automatically so you can relax, unwind, meditate or just get some quiet time right away. Included sounds (recorded in HD quality) Forest Rain, Heavy Rain, Light Rain, Rain on Tent, Rain Shower, Sprinkle, Thunderstorm, Wind and Rain, all in a beautiful and easy to use interface. This app helps with insomnia, gets you to sleep quicker, improves quality of sleep, blocks out distracting noise, boosts concentration by drowning out distracting thoughts with relaxing sounds. Stay calm & stress-free with this app!


Digipill uses psychoacoustics to allow you to unlock your subconscious and change your perception. There are no gimmicks or binaural beats involved; instead, Digipill uses completely unique techniques inside carefully crafted audio 'pills' which typically play for around half an hour - although the effects can often last for much longer - sometimes even a lifetime. The Digipill technique has been specifically designed to help with real life issues including giving up smoking, building up confidence, and getting to sleep. The technique can even be used to approach natural highs not unlike that of some physical pills. Simply choose a pill to suit the issue you'd like help with, sit back with some good quality headphones, and allow your mind to work with Digipill to unlock your subconscious.


Tokyo Voice Column


Cinema Sleeper by Mardo

My wife has a problem at the cinema, its sleeper films, not a sleeper, as in a film no one notices, and then it becomes a hit. I mean, LITERALLY, sleeping in films. Unless the film is non-stop laughs and action, she will drift off into slumberland, head on my shoulder, even if the special effects have just blown something up!

My wife claims this is not her fault, the seats are so comfortable and the lighting dim, its a great place to sleep. Mind you my wife is a great napper, she will a nap everyday! Straight home from work, to the bedroom, 30 minute nap, then back out in time for dinner. Then back into bed later that night before me. I on the other hand avoid naps at all cost, because if I have even a 20 minute nap after work, I won't be getting to sleep until 2am.

She is not alone in this though. My mother and sister have both confirmed they have fallen asleep in movies. My sister fell asleep in a VIP cinema, where they have reclining chairs and waiters bringing you drinks. My mother on the other hand will fall asleep watching TV at home, similar to films. SO I can not berate my wife too much, though it does seem a waste of a not cheap ticket.

Regardless, this does give me an excuse to go to the movies without my wife, And with so many superhero films coming out I am pretty happy with that. She would just fall asleep anyway…. Mind you, I always notice she stays awake long enough to finish the popcorn.





Strange but True


You need an extra body part to be fashionable...

Fashion Week has been taking place in all over the world. In Milan Fashion Week, people found out that you need an extra body part to be fashionable this season. Models with three breasts have strutted down a catwalk in Italy as part of Milan Fashion Week. Fashion label GCDS have shown off their 'rave-ready' collection on models donning prosthetic breasts that poked out from under lycra sports bras. The bizarre look is reminiscent of the three-breasted actress in Arnold Schwarzenegger's film 1990 'Total Recall'. Along with their three breasts, the models wore knee-high boots, neon crop tops and skin-tight shorts. They sported a selection of clothes from the brand's Spring/Summer 2019 collection as the catwalk was illuminated by neon signs that read 'GCDS Corp is your only God'. The labels acronym which stands for 'God Can't Destroy Streetwear' is an Italian brand. According to The Zetty, it has become one of the most 'coveted emerging brands thanks to its iconic graphics and catchy slogans'.

And perhaps more hands…

Getting your nails done is a real treat - and lots of us like to pamper ourselves every now and again with a manicure. People who love nail art come up with all sorts of designs. However, after a while it gets harder to come up with new and unique designs. If you're looking for inspiration, look no further. There's now a weird new nail art design that will seriously turn heads. On every nail, a perfect replica of a manicured hand is created so it looks like you have five tiny hands... on each fingertips. A salon called Nail Sunny has posted a video of the bonkers creation on it's Instagram page - and people do not know what to make of it. Even if the unnerving design isn't to your taste, the craftsmanship it takes to create something like this is quite impressive!