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Miyagi man arrested for calling employment office 159 times in a row without saying a single word

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 08:00 PM PST

You’ll be comforted to know that he had a good reason, however.

It’s an underappreciated nuance of Japanese culture that the public employment office is known as “Hello Work.” It’s an incredibly cute and festive name that you could easily imagine Rip Taylor shouting as he fires puffs of confetti into the air.

Although it’s a superficial feature of the institution, it probably does help to promote a more positive atmosphere on a subconscious level among staff and clients who are faced with the sometimes bleak business of unemployment assistance.

For one office in Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, it is sometimes bizarre too. According to police, from about 2:30 in the afternoon of 31 January, Hello Work received 159 phone calls over the course of two and a half hours. However, every time they picked up the phone there was nothing but silence on the other end.

The police were contacted and traced the source of the quiet calls to an unemployed man in nearby Hagashi Matsushima City. Considering both the man’s mobile phone and Hello Work’s phones had detailed records of the calls, it was an open-and-shut case. Naturally, the 41-year-old suspect admitted, telling police “There was something I wanted to say.”

While that might seem like a cryptic motive, many online took it to mean that this “criminal” was really nothing more than a big old nervous Nelly.

“He just has trouble communicating. He needs counseling not an arrest.”
“Poor guy. He tried to reach out, but when he heard the person on the other end the words didn’t come to him.”
“I admire him for keeping at it 159 times, even though it was hard for him.”
“I know how hard it can be to summon the courage to call Hello Work.”
“That’ll do, man. That’ll do.”
“SAY IT THEN ALREADY!!!!!”
“Maybe 159 silent pauses was what he actually wanted to say?”

Hopefully, Hello Work and the authorities will go easy on the guy and give him the help he needs, at least when it comes to finding employment. It goes without saying he should probably steer clear of the telemarketing field, but he can take heart that there are still plenty of jobs suited to a man with his particular character traits, from fake wedding ceremony guest to vending machine location scout.

Source: Sankei News, My Game News Flash
Top image ©SoraNews24

Goldfish style: The elegant way to drink shochu in Japan

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 07:00 PM PST

Drinking method is beautiful to look at–and could help mask the taste of burning alcohol.

First, let me get this off my chest: I hate shochu. I can’t stand the stuff. A distilled Japanese beverage containing typically 25 percent alcohol by volume (comparing roughly to Chinese shaojiu/baijiu and Korean soju), it burns my throat in a way completely unlike Japanese sake (rice wine, called nihonshu in Japanese), which goes down very smoothly. Consequently, I have profound respect for anyone who can toss back cup after cup of shochu like it was nothing.

Despite my distaste, I’m always open to trying new things, and a recent tweet by user @otomania_net has certainly piqued my interest. In his post, he shares his discovery of a particular way of drinking shochu known as “the goldfish,” or “kingyo” in Japanese:

“Today I learned a way of drinking shochu called ‘the goldfish’ for the first time. Dilute a glass of shochu containing a leaf or two of shiso [Japanese basil] and sliced chili pepper [capsicum] with hot water. The shiso looks like an underwater plant and the pieces of pepper like goldfish. The refreshing scent of the shiso coupled with the sharp taste of the pepper is a sophisticated, practical way of drinking it that warms your body. This style seems to be quite famous in the Kanto region [eastern part of Japan surrounding the Tokyo area].” 

Phew! For a minute there, I thought that real goldfish were going to be involved.

The finished glass certainly creates an aesthetically pleasing scene, almost as if it were transformed into a mini aquarium. Net users were intrigued by it as well, leaving comments such as the following: 

 “It’s so stylish! I think it resembles a mojito.”
“I used to occasionally see this drinking style at some bars in Osaka, too.”
“So my eyes aren’t great and I looked at the picture before reading any of the text. My first reaction was, ‘Whoah, why are there ladybugs swimming around in that drink?!’ Sorry…”
“I’ve also heard that adding carbonated water makes it good.”
“It seems like it would work well with Japanese sake too.”

Seeing as I don’t live near any shops that carry shochu, I’d be curious if someone else wanted to try out “the goldfish” and report back. If the presentation and added flavor could mask the alcohol’s usual taste, this could be a big development, indeed!

Source, featured image: Twitter/@otomania_net

Onsen episode of anthropomorphized eye-drop anime girls is quite the eye-opener【Video】

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 05:00 PM PST

We find out that Guardians of the Eye love to soak in salty tears.

Everyone thought it was a joke when Japanese company Santen Pharmaceutical first created an anime mini-series featuring cute anime girls based on their eye drop products. But little did they know that it would turn viral, with the action-packed videos racking up millions of views for their uniqueness and cast of heroines voiced by legends in the Japanese voice acting industry.

And the most recent episode of EYEDROPS is a special one: the entire crew takes a well-deserved rest from their duties protecting the planet Eye.

▼ The video is in Japanese, but you can laugh along with
the auto-translate English, or scroll down for our summary.

Drained from maintaining constant vigil, Chondroitin Sulfate Sodium suggests the crew take a relaxing trip to an onsen full of tears, the perfect getaway for heroines of Eye.

"Tears wash away stuff like pollen and protects the eyes."

Dressed in striking kimonos with eye motifs, the cast soak their tired feet in salty liquid. And while everyone's having a great time, the shy Potassium Glycyrrhizin gets teased and tickled by the playful Taurine.

▼ The quality here is too high…
almost as high quality as Santen Pharmaceutical eye drops!

Neostigmine Methylsulfate, the most responsible member of them all, provides additional commentary on the role of tears, but disaster strikes before she can continue further.

▼ The team heads back to their headquarters,
only to see extensive damage occurring on the cornea.

Taurine, Vitamin B6, Neostigmine Methylsulfate, and Potassium L-aspartate immediately combine their powers to relief symptoms, but their treatment proves ineffective.

▼ Guardians fighting to protect our vision.

After the subsequent inflammation suppression technique of Tetrahydrozoline Hydrochloride, Chlorphenamine Maleate, Potassium Glycyrrhizin and Epsilon-aminocaproic Acid failed to achieve anything, an intruder presents himself.

▼ Yup, I would not want that in my eye.

▼ But just as things are about to get nasty,
a new character appears and the video ends on a cliffhanger.

Just who is the newcomer, and what special abilities can she employ to thwart the villain's despicable plans?

We honestly can't wait for the next episode, which is saying a lot considering it’s basically a glorified eye drops commercial. But judging from the extensive downtime between videos, that equally wacky anthropomorphized knife-wielding white blood cell anime might air before it comes out.

Source: YouTube/Santen Pharmaceutical Eye Drops via @press
Images: YouTube/Santen Pharmaceutical Eye Drops

New fries from McDonald’s Japan come with bolognese sauce and cheese

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 09:30 AM PST

Love the good ol’ fries from McDonald’s? For a limited time, McDonald’s Japan is offering something a little extra to give them even more flavor!  

French fries may be one of the most popular items on the menu at McDonald’s, but that hasn’t stopped the fast food chain from offering them in unique flavors from time to time.  This time, their newest limited edition fries will come with a Italian twist, specifically in the form of bolognese sauce!

The new “Try Pour Some Cheese Bolognese” (Kaketemiiyo Cheese Bolognese) fries are basically french fries served with a warm topping of meaty bolognese sauce and cheese. Now, while the topping doesn’t include any rare or unexpected ingredients, the rich tomato and meat flavor of the sauce along with the melted cheese should combine delightfully with the salty taste of the french fries.

According to the product description from McDonald’s Japan, the cheese bolognese sauce is made with white cheddar cheese and also includes both ground beef and pork, as well as caramelized onions, tomatoes and a dash of black pepper and garlic to give the sauce a rich, yet well-balanced depth of flavor.

McDonald’s Japan will also be running a promotional campaign until February 27 where Twitter users who follow McDonald’s official Twitter account and retweet any of their tweets containing the hashtag “#当ててミーヨ” will have a chance to win one of 100 cheese bolognese blanket and french fries container-shaped case set.

▼ If you’re interested, you can follow their account here and
retweet this tweet or any other with the same ending hashtag.

The “Try Pour Some Cheese Bolognese Fries” will be available at McDonald’s locations across Japan from February 28 to late March for 390 yen (US$3.65), or 490 yen as a combo set with a drink. Alternatively, if you want to have the limited edition fries with a meal, you can get them as part of a value set with a burger of your choice for an extra 100 yen.

With the spicy curly fries campaign having come to an end, if you want a little bit of extra meat and flavor to your fries, make sure to try these while they’re available!

Source, images: Digital PR Platform

Japanese mother finds long-lost childhood cookie recipe, proceeds to bake her heart out

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 07:00 AM PST

And it's all thanks to the people working hard behind the scenes.

One of the great things about Japanese companies is that they go out of their way to achieve the highest customer satisfaction possible, as even humble rice cracker manufacturers put in time and effort to ensure their patrons get the very best.

One such company in Japan has done just that for a woman who lost something extremely valuable. Cooking appliances like ovens or microwaves usually come with a few recipes to get customers started, and for Japanese Twitter user @yamuretsu, one particular cookie recipe meant the world to her.

▼ But alas, she lost the recipe many years ago (translation below).

"When I was young and still living with my parents, I considered the cookie recipe that came with the Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. oven to be the gold standard. It was a gift from my mother to celebrate my marriage. That recipe and oven was lost after my house underwent renovation, and I couldn't bake them even if I wanted to. I thought of giving up, but I just couldn't let it go."

▼ Ladies and gentlemen, we don’t have cookies anymore.

▼ @yamuretsu contacted the company with just a sliver of
hope that there would be some sort of reply (continued below).

"At my wit's end, I sent an email to Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. (now Panasonic) but had only scant details to work with. I provided the age of the oven and asked if there was any sort of information left. Before a day had passed, they replied back with the cookie recipe I'd been looking for! I was so grateful!"

▼ Nice one, Panasonic! (continued below)

"I didn't know the oven's model number, so all I sent was the era in which it was used. I rushed to the supermarket and bought all the ingredients. The scent of blended butter reminded me of my childhood, and when I bit into a cookie, it was something I had not tasted in years."

▼ Ladies and gentlemen, we have cookies again.

▼ A happy ending, and a sweet one to boot (continued below).

"Here they are! I cried so much. I've been baking them since six o'clock and still making more. I'll send a thank you email to Panasonic later for finding this recipe, even though they had extremely little information to work with."

Kudos to Panasonic for safekeeping @yamuretsu's precious memories, and given that Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. changed their name in 2008, the company must have kept the outdated oven's records for at least a good ten years.

Panasonic’s act of kindness might have been relatively simple compared to the likes of Disney’s and Nintendo’s, but at least it helped create more delicious cookies, which counts as a heroic deed in my book.

Source: Twitter/@yamuretsu via My Game News Flash
Top image: Pakutaso
Insert images: Pakutaso (1, 2)

Children’s manga apologizes to sumo wrestler for drawing penis on Ghengis Khan’s face

Posted: 25 Feb 2018 01:00 AM PST

A juvenile joke led one publisher to face the wrath of Khan.

CoroCoro Comic is a monthly manga publication aimed at boys in elementary school, and as such has humor tailored just for them. For example, here is a scene from one of CoroCoro Comic‘s current titles Nanto! Dangerous Ojisan.

Further along in this issue, in the manga Yarisugi!!! Itazura-kun by Asumi Yoshino, one of the characters is answering a question in class where they have to fill in the blanks to complete the name of Genghis Khan – or in Japanese pronunciation Chingizu Han.

The question presents the picture and the letters Chi__ __n. After struggling through possible answers like Chiba Ken (Chiba Prefecture) and Cha Han (fried rice), he fails to come up with one and finally decides on Chin Chin (“wee-wee” or “penis”).

Finally, to prove his answer correct, the character draws a penis over the ruler’s forehead, giving him what scholars of the bawdy arts refer to as a “Roman Helmet.”

Again, this comic is intended for boys around the age of ten, so the gag probably went over like gangbusters for them. However, word of it reached Asashoryu Akinori, the 68th person to reach sumo’s highest rank and the first Mongolian to do so. The offended champ took to Twitter to vent his frustration over the defacement of Genghis Khan.

His impassioned tweets have since been deleted but included comments such as “Why would you do this?” and “My favorite Japanese people are like this?!”

To many this might seem like an overreaction, not only because it has been nearly a millennium since the passing of Genghis Khan, but because according to many historical accounts he wasn’t exactly a nice guy and brutally killed many in the creation of his empire. However, this history is disputed by many Mongolians. Even if it is true, what Genghis Khan was and is in Mongolia are two vastly different things.

During the rise of the Soviet Union, Mongolia became something of an oppressed satellite state much like Eastern Europe during the Cold War. The ruling government was closely linked with the USSR and downplayed any discussion of Genghis Khan as part of efforts keep the people in line.

However, around the same time that the USSR collapsed in the 90s, there was a large resurgence of Genghis Khan admiration. He became a symbol of the nation’s strength and independence, and as a result he has become more that just a historical figure. He is the embodiment of their pride.

▼ Genghis Khan’s likeness can be seen everywhere in Mongolia from
food to money to monuments — even the occasional mountain.

Wikipedia/Vidor

In light of this, it’s probably wise that CoroCoro Comic officially apologized for the joke in a statement made on 23 February.

“About the Yarisugi!!! Itazura-kun which appeared in the March issue of CoroCoro Comic released on 15 February, and the inappropriate expression about Mongolian hero, Genghis Khan, we deeply apologize to everyone who adores Genghis Khan, including the people of Mongolia, for causing offense.

In order not to cause such a situation again, we will deepen our knowledge about Mongolian history and culture and show more consideration from now on.

In addition, on 23 February, we will apologize directly to the Consulate General of Mongolia Dambadarjaa Batjargal.”

They weren’t alone either. Other Japanese people also quickly took to the internet to say they were sorry.

“I apologize on behalf of Japanese people.”
“Everyone in Mongolia, I’m truly sorry.”
“Please don’t think that all Japanese people are like this.”

In their defense, the joke in the comic was more directed at the character’s lack of knowledge and comically poor ability to fake his way through a test than a direct assault on the main source of national pride in Mongolia.

Nevertheless, before making terrible dick jokes regarding another culture in any form, it is definitely advisable to do due research beforehand in order to avoid these kinds of unintended insults.

Once again, leave it to sumo wrestlers to show us the way.

Source: Huffington Post
Top image: Wikipedia
Inset images: SoraNews24 (unless otherwise noted)