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insect interest

Insects are big in Japan. They're also big. Here, for example, is one I found outside my front door just the other day....

An insect as large as a convenience store.

They're also big business. Rather like people in some countries breed dogs or horses, in Japan they also breed beetles.

Furthermore, exhibitions are held to scare the living daylights out of the nation's youngsters....

An insect lit in a special way in order to cause nightmares.

On the whole, kids go ga-ga over the little critters and enjoy nothing more than picking them up, looking at them, and putting them back down again.

A recent exhibition in Osaka had inflatable insects on sale....

....providing hours of fun and fascination....

A child being fascinated as a large insect lunges at her mother.

The real thing is, of course, also available....

Insects in tanks waiting for a new home.

The exhibition also had a range of paintings and drawings on display, showing a day in the life of a critter....

A day in the life of a critter: Get up. Eat breakfast. Read newspaper. Clean tank. Startle someone. Laugh. Go to bed.

Throughout the exhibition there were plenty of insects giving various demonstrations. Here, a beetle demonstrates the art of sitting on a tree stump.

After complaints from insects about being pointed at and stared at all the time, some interactive areas were created so that they could get up-close-and-personal with visitors....

Insects can get a bit funny about being looked at all the time. They much prefer a bit of touchy-feely.

Butterflies from other countries also featured, albeit dead and pinned to a wooden board....

Looking at this one, I was kind of glad it was dead and pinned to a board....

A creature with a pointy bit so pointy that if administered, a trip to accident and emergency would be highly likely.

A child pointing at some pointy bits....

More pin-ups....

Perhaps best of all, on display was Japan's most famous insect, the recently deceased controversial former athlete Shin Fukumoto. He took the gold in the men's 100m at the 1984 LA Olympics but was later disqualified after judges noticed that he had many more legs than the other runners.

Shin claimed he had only used two of his legs in the race, though slow motion footage showed he had used all of them, thereby giving him an unfair advantage over the other runners.
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On Sunday, 07 June, 2009, Blogger n said:

Ah ah, excellent !  

On Sunday, 07 June, 2009, Blogger meemalee said:

What's the name of that summer bug that goes "GWAAAAA Gwa Gwa Gwa GWAA"?

It's in all the Japanese films and anime I've seen - even computer games and I heard it for real all the time when I was last in Japan last August. I took this picture of a dead one (sorry, it's a bit fuzzy)  

On Monday, 08 June, 2009, Anonymous Scotty.VOR said:

Good grief, thought for a moment there I thought the last picture was Kate Moss. Damn size zero, it blurs the lines between people, skeletons, and insects.

Meemalee, it could be a Cicada.
This anything like it?
If not, have a romp through some of these.  

On Monday, 08 June, 2009, Blogger steveb said:

Yep, it's a cicada, called a "semi" here. They're due to show up soon in a tree or on a lightpole near you.  

On Monday, 08 June, 2009, Anonymous downundersugarglider said:

thanks englishman in osaka - your posts are always good fun!  

On Tuesday, 09 June, 2009, Anonymous mameha said:

Where is this insect exhibition? its in osaka?  

On Thursday, 11 June, 2009, Blogger Baron's Life said:

a most informative and fascinating post and read...thanks..I enjoyed it  

On Tuesday, 07 July, 2009, Anonymous Kenji said:

the first two images looks exactly like the ones that are on display right now in Hawaii's pearlridge mall...I guess now I know where Hawaii got those gigantic bugs from XP  

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