Saturday, March 04, 2000

Greetings from J-List March 4, 2000

Greetings from Japan. It's a lazy Saturday afternoon as Tomo and I put the finishing touches on the weekend update today.

As the Japanese recession continues, I've noticed a definite trend in Japanese companies trying to turn their businesses around by emulating successful U.S. companies. Just as U.S. companies scrambled to copy the best of Japan's business practices in the 80's and early 90's (the Saturn company is a great example of this), Japanese companies are trying things the other way around. Seibu Department Stores have formed a cross-pollination alliance with Nordstorm, as they try to teach the "Nordy" method of customer service to their employees, while all manner of companies scramble to adapt e-business models to the Japanese markets.

One area of the Japanese economy that's doing well is beer, which is booming along nicely. Kirin has even knocked rival Asahi out of the lead, garnering 40.2 percent of the market to Asahi's 40.0 percent. In addition to the major brands like Kirin Lager and Asahi Super Dry, the Japanese beer market thrives on seasonal "limited run" beers like Sapporo's Winter Tale, Kirin's Spring has Come beer, and short-lived brands like Asahi First Lady (beer for ladies) and Super Malt (beer made from hops, and not partially from rice, as all other Japanese beers are). If you're interested in seeing some beer commercials, check out CM-Watch at (newly updated).

Tonight's update is a nice one, with many great new items for you, including:

  • Great new issues of Japan's most popular magazines, including the new Gokuh and Bejean -- the latter of which has a great appearance by the lovely Kanazawa Bunko
  • New photobooks, including a great new leg fetish photobook, and more copies of the long-lost Kuroda Mirei first (bust 95 cm) photobook
  • On the S&M photobook page, we've got new gouba-bon format books, including more copies of Traditional Bondage in Japan and the Deluxe Female Urine Book
  • Some great single-issue copies of PC Angel, on the hentai manga page
  • For fans of the excellent DVD & Video CD Soft Catalog, a sampler 2-Video CD & magazine set, the new issue is posted on the CD ROMs page
  • On the in-stock videos page (page 1), a great new 60-minute cos-play (costume playing) video by the lovely Chinatsu Yui
  • Finally, a great update to our puzzle page, with new puzzles by lovely illustrator Haruyo Morita, as well as great new anime puzzles for fans of The Princess Mononoke, Captain Harlock and Card Captor Sakura

Remember that anytime you order more than 10 units of any of J-List's gum or snack items, as well as our collectible card items, you get a 15% discount. We've got lots of great items in stock, so check out the snack & card/puzzle pages now!

Thursday, March 02, 2000

Greetings from J-List March 2, 2000

Hello again from Japan, where fatherhood means never taking a bath alone...

I love to watch Japanese TV and see what the next "boom" might be. A company called Megahouse is banking that their tiny camera, a 1/4 size replica of the classic Leica camera, this camera takes real pictures on special quarter-size film. The company is hoping the tiny cameras catch on with high school girls and people in their 20's.

Another potential boom are new digital cameras with an adapter so you can send the pictures to your friends directly through your portable phone. After you snap a picture, you can "write" digitally on it with a special friend before you send it. It's made by NTT Docomo.

Tonight's update is another great one. First of all, by request, we've added funny Japanese English T-shirts to our wacky T-shirts page. Now, in addition to bizarre phrases in English, you can buy authentic Japanese-English T-shirts modeled after real shirts that we found here in Japan. Our shirts are 100% cotton Hanes Comfort-T, and feel really great. Check out the new funny English shirts on the T-shirt page now.

Other newly-added items include:

  • Great new magazines, including the new Gal's Dee and Milky Dolls
  • One of my favorite magazines, Ike Ike Magazine, featuring a wonderful spread of the very erotic Ms. Wakana Sena
  • New items on our popular gouka-bon S&M photobook page, with a great all-Stewardess costplay book, and another one for fans of school uniforms
  • For Video CD fans, four new VCD items added to the Video CD page
  • New in-stock videos, posted by Kaori
  • Amazingly, we've found a few copies of the out-of-print hardcover photobook Pistil, by the lovely Fubuki Akira

I'm flying out the door, heading for Tokyo on business. I'll stay at my favorite capsule hotel in the heart of Shibuya for 3800 yen, and enjoy the deep bath and sauna as well. I enjoy my little trips to Tokyo, but it's deathly cold tonight -- wish me luck!

Tuesday, February 29, 2000

Greetings from J-List February 29, 2000

Greetings from J-List. Rina and are are safely back in Japan, after an eventless flight on Korean Airlines.

I do so like KAL. The pibinbap (spicy Korean dish of rice, meat and vegetables) is delicious, and the stewardesses are always pretty. I added nicely to my Korean Airlines spoon collection this trip. I'll have to start on forks and knives, soon.

We were only gone a week, so Japan didn't change much while we were gone. Japan is still cold, and still filled with smokers who seem to be everywhere. Japan is still a very different place from California, and yanking my body from one environment into another still gives me a bizarre feeling sometimes. Still, jet lag aside, I'm back in my Japan life with no problems.

Omiyage, or souvenirs brought back from a trip, is a major tradition in Japan, and it's unthinkable to go somewhere and not bring back a suitable memento of your trip for those who didn't get to come along. For J-List I brought those chocolate seashells, along with 3 lbs. of Starbucks coffee. (We're all caffeine addicts here.) Kazuki wanted Power Rangers Lightspeed Rescue (which is based on Go Go Five) more than anything, so I brought him the U.S. version of Victory Robo. Chiharu got one of the rarest things to find in Japan, onion bagels and cream cheese. Kaori got the nicest omiyage of all though -- her Strawberry iMac, which she's eagerly playing with now at home.

There are several great new items on the J-List site this evening, including:

  • The new Dela Beppin, which features the lovely Kanazawa Bunko as well as many more lovely AV gals
  • The new Birei, the highly erotic all-color magazine featuring the "Pheromone Princess" Hitomi Ryo and many others
  • Other magazines, including the new issue of Men's Master
  • A nice update to the high-end gouba-bon photobook page, with the Nakadashi 50 Renpatsu and Lesbos Club Special
  • A great slew of in-stock adult videos, including Tajima Yu, Kawai Momo, Sakurai Fuka and the sizzling Yumeno Maria -- and more
  • On the idol & softporn page, great idol videos of Asakura Megumi (!) and the Mini-Suka Police
  • On the Japanese snacks page, Toppo, a wonderful baked pretzel with chocolate inside
  • Finally, new from Soft on Demand, a wonderful 2-hour "Masterpiece of SOD" collection video featuring selections from nearly 100 high-quality titles.

Remember that the J-List 10%-20% sale on manga & dojinshi is coming to a close in just a few days. Check out the site now, to be sure you don't miss out. In addition to the fine hentai manga we've got, there's also a huge in-stock selection of Lunatic Party and Angelic Impact parody Sailor Moon & Evangelion manga series.

Although there are no Lucky Charms here in Japan, it is nice to be back. See you on the web!