Well, Spring has sprung here in Japan, and it's starting to get downright warm around here. Although early Spring in Japan can be a little difficult to read -- warm days followed by cold, bitter days, and the strong winds that blow all the time, called "Haru Ichiban" -- there's no doubt that Winter's hold on Japan is fading fast. Already the ume ("oo-meh") trees are blossoming, which means the Season of the Sakura can't be far behind. As the days have warmed, we've been fortunate enough to hear the lovely calls of the Uguisu ("oo-goo-ii-soo"), a bird that symbolizes Spring to the Japanese, right outside our window while we work. You can hear it too, at this site: http://www.asahi-net.or.jp/~yi2y-wd/a-uta/uta-uguisu.html
Tomorrow is White Day, a unique Japanese event in which men who received chocolate for Valentine's Day must give a gift in return to the girls who gave him chocolate on February 14th. It's a blatant invention of the chocolate industry in Japan, but as time has progressed, it's woven its way into Japanese culture just the same. Popular gifts to give to girls are white chocolate, flowers, and perfume. Tomo, Yasu and I are giving the girls in the J-List office fingernail polish (called "manucure" in Japanese) in return for the chocolate they gave us a month ago.
For the new update this evening, we've got a great selection of cool items for you, including:
- First, we've got some great new magazines, including the new Suppin and various kogal/amateur magazines, too
- For photobook lovers, see the beautiful new hardcover photobook of Minori Aoi, along with the sensual "Lady Bomb" of Rika Akiyoshi
- Also, for fans of Japan's highly-developed leg, stocking, panty and high-heel fetish, we bring you Miho Mochizuki's very nice "Noble Doll" erotic photobook
- Also: a rare and special item, a beautiful photobook dedicated to Japan's famous "shunga" or erotic ukiyoe artwork of the Edo period
- If you like Japanese hentai manga, we've got several new volumes in stock for you, as well as restocking of the popular "dick girl" stories in EX Comics' Neo Half
- If you love Japan's unique yaoi comics, we've got a nice new manga work from Chocolat Comics
- We've also got a very nice erotic hentai doujinshi work in stock for you, a new underground coming in "The Great Work of Alchemy" series that features beautiful color!
- If you love erotic DVD from Japan, we've got some fun items, starting with "Copying the Breasts for the First Time" in which girls photocopy their breasts with a color copy machine (a new fetish is born?)
- There's a new Stark Nakedness Sports Series DVD, with 3 full video releases for you on one DVD, for 150 minutes of fun
- Enjoy great erotic AV performances with three lovely idols in Cuties Premium, Smiles of Angels
- We've got a new Moodyz Collection DVD, featuring a staggering 4 hours of sampler footage from 119 titles, a great way to learn about this great company's bold productions
- For Ai Nagase fans, see her in two new productions from Dream Quest, including her very cool all-tekoki special production
- Finally, we've got another great set of videos for collectors of M's Video Group, the last word in high-end Japanese bukkake
- For fans of Japan's bishoujo games and characters, we're carrying several new items, including two beautiful fabric wall scrolls we're stocking in San Diego for your ordering convenience, as well as bishoujo cards for the future Peach Princess game Little My Maid
- We've got a major update to our anime & toys pages, including fresh stock of several cool items, including the Japan-only Hot Wheels (Speed Race Mach 5, Ultraman's cool vehicles and more Masked Rider Hot Wheels)
- We've had a general restocking of the Totoro's Wonder Tin Toy Collection, with fresh stock of the very collectible tin Totoro, Cat Bus and deluxe Bus Stop
- When I was a boy in Maryland, I loved the Shogun Warriors toys they released in the U.S., although I didn't know anything about the original anime shows they were based on. We've got some cool new anime phone strap/keychains for fans of this era
- We've got some nice authentic Japanese chopsticks in stock for you, and a great way to make temaki sushi (rolled sushi)
- We've got a major restock of our Japanese snack items, including fresh stock of Shigekix (the super-sour "hard gummi candy"), Tomato Pretz (tomato flavored pretzels, they're really good), Green Tea Pocky, the ever-popular Sushi Gummi, and more
- Also: fresh stock of the Captain Harlock figures from Furuta, which are beautifully painted figures from the universe created by Leiji Matsumoto (full sets are available)
- For fans of tasty Japanese gum, we've got stock of Free Zone from Lotte, in lemon and "hi mint" flavor, which won't stick to your teeth
- If you love Inuyasha, you'll enjoy the new series of trading cards we've posted -- they're really cool
- For Love Hina fans, we've also got fresh stock of the extremely popular SkyLuv Product figures, which are incredibly detailed and fun to play with or display -- get them before we sell out again
- For bento lovers, we've got one of the coolest Japanese bento boxes we've ever seen, with not one, not two, but three levels -- one for rice, one for your main meal, and a built-in water bottle that is just too cool for words
- Finally, look for new Super Deformed Star Wars toys, a thoughtful item that guests staying at your house will appreciate, fresh stock of Japanese miso soup, a great way to experience a Japanese onsen hot springs in your own bath, real Pocari Sweat powder that you can enjoy at home, and more!
J-List has many unique and fun products that aren't available anywhere else. One of the hardest to find items are the authentic Japanese loose socks (those baggy socks high school girls here wear). We know they're hard to find because we looked for nearly two years before we found socks good enough for J-List's customers. We have them in 80 or 120 cm lengths (if you search for "loose socks" on the J-List site you can see pictures of what each side looks like, using Kaori's legs as a model). We've also got the "socks glue" that goes with the socks, to hold them up.
The J-Mate homepage has been update, with new reviews of cool things from Japan for you (the new photobook by Minori Aoi, and Viper V16, the best-selling two-disc game from Hobibox). You can also read English interviews with Sally Yoshino, Ai Nagase, Mai Hagiwara, and many more. You can access J-Mate at http://www.jmate.com