The princess agreed to marry the prince if he completed a thousand temples in one night. By summoning a horde of demons, the prince completed 999 temples before the cock crowed. When the princess refused her hand, he turned her to stone and she became the 1000th statue.Read More
The conference in Indonesia was the strangest I'd ever attended. This was partially because it was a mix of scientists, artists and space enthusiasts. And partially because there was an alien in the foyer.Read More
Today, I got scammed in Yogyukarta. I knew I was being scammed because the method was described word-for-word in reviews I'd read just the day before. And I couldn't stop it happening!Read More
"But how does the mountain caretaker receive the message that the volcano will soon erupt?"
"... wouldn't seismometers be preferable?"Read More
"This will hurt a little."
I have a general rule that if you have to hurt me for medical purposes, I'd much rather not know about it in advance.Read More
I waited for the Sun to set over the rice paddy fields surrounding the Kumano Shrine just outside Yokohama. As darkness fell around me, the people poured in. We were here to see a lot of insect sex.Read More
A story goes that hundreds of years ago, the hand of a princess was offered to the warrior who could defeat the enemies of a certain clan. This doubtless seemed like a romantic ideal until the triumphant victor turned out to be a dog.Read More
It is very hard to refuse an invitation to an exhibit that promises to be the juxtaposition of sake (yes, the Japanese alcohol), technology and art. Although I admit it was perhaps rather less necessary to illegally break in.Read More
If I were to try and summarise the 11 films I saw today in one spicy catch-all phrase, I'd opt for "AND THEN THEY ALL DIED!" Muhahaha.
Arguably, the "Muhahaha" might be subjective.Read More
Leaning over the seated figure, I cupped one palm around each of her exposed breasts and squeezed. Cameras snapped as I pressed a thumb against each nipple. Not a bad texture, but the uniform consistency meant a hard squeeze compressed the flesh too much. Then someone came up beside me took off her head.Read More
When I grow up, I want to be Yayoi Kusama. At 87, the Japanese artist wears her hair a shocking orange-red and paints psychedelic scenes of abstract polkadot landscapes you suspect you may once have seen in a high fever.Read More
Travel between Japan's two largest cities can be done in a mere two hours via the Shinkansen bullet train, which rockets through the country at speeds up to 200 mph (~300 km/h). Alternatively, you could pay more and take seven and half hours and ride a bus.Read More
Japan's obsession with organisation has led to the country stuffing all their foxes up a mountain.Read More
When it comes to historical truths, Japan does not have the best reputation. School textbooks are notorious for glossing over the nastier of Japan's wartime activities, while the government is periodically caught in verifiable lies worthy of Trump's inauguration numbers. But how does this feed into the daily news coverage in modern day Japan?Read More
The rise of Daesh has resulted in a huge increase in hate crimes against Muslim citizens. This is due to claims by the terrorist organisation that their abhorrent actions are supported by Islamic doctrine, despite being repeatedly and strongly contested by the Muslim community. In a backlash to anti-Islam rhetoric, a steadily louder claim has emerged that all religions are a source of evil. This seems to have upset a large number of Christians who believe that Christianity is fundamentally a force for good.Read More
The Hokkaido Sun Guest House was right in my neighbourhood, situated between my apartment and closest supermarket. The fact I couldn't find it was therefore perturbing.Read More
I arrived back in Sapporo just before Typhoon Lionrock smacked into Hokkaido.Read More
On Sunday night, I fulfilled all of my deepest fantasies.Read More
"If we could not confirm your arrival by 1:00 in the midnight, we consider the guest as NO SHOW CASE."
What did that even mean?Read More