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time please, ladies and gentlemen

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Thanks for visiting, and thanks for your comments.

There's a list of all the posts here.

An Englishman in Osaka

dashboard delights

Sunday, April 11, 2010
While some people clearly prefer the minimalist look.....

....others like to take things to the other extreme.....

....and perhaps even stick a mannequin on the outside for good measure.....

......or just go the whole hog and slap some paint on the front too....

head banger

Sunday, April 04, 2010

It's low.

But 160 centimetres was deemed high enough for people to pass safely under.

However, for those taller than 160, the bridge must be noticed in order to avoid getting a headache....

....or a severe migraine if you're cycling at speed....

A woman on a bicycle not smashing her head.

Let's face it, approaching this bridge at high speed without paying attention could result in a lot more than just loss of face....

photo: Botched

cosplay carnival

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Last weekend, in the middle of Osaka, people came out in costumes. To play.

There was quite a bit of flesh flashing about....

and where there was flesh, there were blokes with cameras....

....and blokes in dresses with cameras....

....and not blokes not in dresses with cameras....

....as well as people being trodden on...

Even Osaka Castle was trying to muscle in on the action....

There were characters I didn't recognise....

....and a few that I did.....

Batman makes an appearance

Some Osaka favourites were in attendance....

....along with some of Alice's friends....

To top it all off, there was even one guy dressed as a traffic cop!

the bending machine

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Bending machines are becoming more and more popular in Japan, though it's widely accepted that they could do with some help in the looks department....

The latest bending machine, made by Panasonic Bendy Labs.

The machine is perfect for bending straight fruit which look better bent, such as bananas. More and more supermarkets are using the bending machine to repair their faulty fruit and veg.

The object in need of bending is first placed carefully inside the bending chamber. Next, the bendometer dial is set between 1 and 11, with 1 producing a slight kink, and 11 curling it right around into an almost circular shape.

Once the big red button is pressed, the machine works in silence as it cleverly rearranges the object's molecules into a bent shape.

Here's an example of the wonders which the machine can work.....

Recently, the machine even came in handy for Mao Asada, just prior to her appearance at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver.

She underwent a partial body insertion into the bending chamber, the effect of which was both stunning and eye-watering, and helped her towards her silver medal triumph. If only they'd turned the bendometer dial right up to 11 - then she may well have got the gold.

It doesn't always work like clockwork, though. Poor Brenda Saddleworth recently fell inside the bending chamber and no one realised until it was too late....

Brenda Saddleworth: patiently waiting for the invention of the straightening machine.


Friday, March 12, 2010
What do John Travolta's house and Ibaraki's new international airport have in common?


They've both got one plane parked up outside.

Ibaraki Airport, currently operating one flight a day.

Wait a minute, Travolta appears to be operating TWICE as many planes!

Japan's 98th airport, which cost 22 billion yen (£lots) to build, opened on Thursday.
Full story here.

playgrounds of the world

Sunday, March 07, 2010
As it's International Playground Month for the third time in five years, let's take a quiet moment to pay tribute to some of the world's finest grounds of play enjoyed by the little people of this big planet....

Boston, USA

Lots of colour; excellent safety mats; and a funny looking plastic man with potties for feet.

Vienna, Austria

This award winner has a variety of spindly slides radiating out from a central point, like a spider with dyed legs.

Ekaterinburg, Russia

It's got an old communist look, what with its shapes and colours and tyres, but it's also completely bonkers, therefore perfect for children.

Newcastle, Australia

Built in the countryside because of the loud noise of fun, this great setup has an original design that's a lot more stimulating than it looks from the playground's bungee jump launch point.

Osaka, Japan

This minimalist design makes big demands on a child's imagination but the soft ground means that if they should fall from the camel's head, they'll walk away with only a mild bout of concussion.