Saturday, July 20, 2002

Greetings from J-List July 20, 2002

[Apologies if you are receiving this message twice. We had a problem with our mail server and have had to resend last night's J-List update.]

Greetings from Japan, where they love to invent words like "amenity communicator."

Well, the existence of God has proven -- we have our very first Starbuck's in Isesaki. Ever since the company entered the Japanese market five years ago, Starbuck's has quickly become a household name, bringing their coffee beans and delicious beverages to all corners of Japan. They're so popular in Japan that it's uncommon to wait in a line for 30 minutes in Tokyo just to order, and it's very rare that you can sit down and relax in a Starbuck's. Actually, in more crowded restaurants, they have "standing tables" that have no chairs -- you just lean against the table as you drink your matcha frapachino. Starbuck's are by no means rare or special in America, so I'm sure no one gets excited by yet another one opening. But to a foreigner living in rural Japan, it's great news. We were also fortunate enough to happen by the store during their "open house," where they gave out free coffee to everyone that wanted some. Incidentally, Japanese Starbuck's drink sizes start with "small," a small 8 oz cup, which would be far too small for Americans to drink.

Often, when products from America or Europe are marketed in Japan, they are sold by Japanese companies who license the brands from their owners. I can enjoy drinks like Canada Dry Ginger Ale or Bireley's orange drink, but they don't come from Canada or the UK -- they come from the good old Asahi Beverage Company, and you can see the little Asahi corporate mark, hidden somewhere in the packaging. Nabisco goods are popular in Japan, but products like Ritz crackers are really made here by Yamazaki Bread Company and sold under the Ritz brand name. Recently, Tic Tacs (a word which sounds like "tick tock" to the Japanese) have appeared in Japan, courtesy of the Morinaga Confectionery Company. Oh well, they taste the same.

For the new pre-weekend update, we've got an extra special volley of items for you, including:

  • First and foremost, we're happy to announce that the film that sunk Titanic as the top-grossing film in Japan's history, Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away, is in stock! A great 2-DVD set featuring English and French subtitles and much more, this is a wonderful film we hope you will not miss!
  • Speaking of Studio Ghibli, we've got extremely limited stock of a super item: the Studio Ghibli DVD player, a beautiful compact region 2 DVD player that comes with many extras, including a copy of Spirited Away -- you have to see this thing to believe it!
  • Everyone in Japan knows there are some cool Hello Kitty items made in Japan, like Kitty refrigerators and even a limited edition Hello Kitty car made by Daihatsu. Well, we're happy to announce that we've gotten in two excellent Hello Kitty toasters that brighten your kitchen toast your bread with Kitty's face on it
  • We have some nice new hardcover photobooks for fans of Japan's lovely swimsuit idols
  • We have some great new snack and food products for you, including a giant box of delicious Morinaga milk caramels, CC Lemon vitamin C candy, and cold Matcha drink mix that is just great
  • Also, restocking of many items, including our popular mugi tea deluxe set, chocolate covered sunflower seeds, Shigekix sour "hard gummi," Meiji's Banana Choco, and more!
  • Also, we've got stock of Wata Gum, a great Japanese gum that is like cotton candy (wata means "cotton" in Japanese), but when you put it in your mouth it turns to gum
  • We have some cool toys in stock for, including toys based on Kellogg's cereal's characters, a positively cool Kubrick Bible, and a cool deluxe "The Dog" ashtray
  • Other Hello Kitty items include Hello Kitty straws, more of those popular Kitty mayonaise cups which have so many uses, a Hello Kitty mechanical pencil, and more Kitty bento boxes
  • Also, fresh stock of Hamster Club chopsticks, more bento related items like the fish soy sauce bottles, little cutters that turn sausages into cute little penguins, Buddhist incense, a handy little shaver, and more!

For our adult customers, we've got many new 18+ products. They include:

  • First, we're happy to announce that our best-selling Hentai Anime Poker, a game in which you take on lovely girls of anime in five games of strip poker (including Texas Hold 'Em), now comes with all 12 expansion pack girls free (a $25 value) -- so you can enjoy everything about this great game!
  • We have new magazines for fans of Japan's lovely ladies, including the new Chibikkuri, devoted to short girls (under 5 feet or 150 cm), which is a major fetish in Japan
  • We have new erotic photobooks, including a great item from Aida Garo, the famous Japanese nude photographer, and more
  • For hentai manga collectors, enjoy the new works we've got in stock for you, including new "dick girl" comics (always a popular theme), a great game girl parody manga, and more
  • Also, a great new yaoi manga featuring the works of 14 different talented artists -- great for fans of Japan's famous homosexual comics
  • For fans of U-Jin, perhaps the single most famous Japanese hentai artist, we have more copies of that excellent Candy art book
  • In San Diego, we've gotten in fresh stock of the popular Blue Eyes English-language manga, all ready for you to order
  • We have more of the cool plastic paper protectors and shitajiki (plastic paper underlays) that have beautiful bishoujo game images on them
  • For DVD fans we have many new items for you, starting with the "younger sister" of Kurumi Morishita, the lovely Ringo Kihara, age 19, who appears in her debut production (region free)
  • The lovely and experienced Yukari Sakurada stars in "Endless Semen," a very erotic new festival of bukkake by Dogma and Tohjiro (region free)
  • From Soft on Demand, a great new exploration of "obscene kissing of amateur girls," great for fans of Deep Kiss (region free)
  • Also, yet another cool "Amateur Bukkake" DVD release, in which naive girls learn about bukkake and semen and more (region free)
  • Finally, the lovely Sayaka Tsutsumi is an erotic ninja in a great new offering Natural High (region free).

J-List is very happy with the popularity of our wacky Japanese message T-shirts, which are selling very well. We get questions from customers regarding the T-shirts, some of whom are afraid that the T-shirts come in Japanese sizes. Happily, our T-shirts are all printed in the USA, on 100% cotton T-shirts (6.1 weight, the same as Hanes Beefy-T). To better serve you, we now stock all sizes of shirts, from size S all the way up to XXXL, and T-shirts ship out daily from our San Diego office.

Monday, July 15, 2002

Greetings from J-List July 15, 2002

Hello again from the land of the rising sun!

The war for control of Japan's beer market continues to rage. The two biggest companies, Asahi and Kirin, keep taking the lead back from each other, as each tries to come up with new ways to steal market share from their rival. Currently, Asahi has 39 per cent of the market, and Kirin 35 per cent. The market has undergone many changes since the emergence of happo-shu, a kind of beer that is made slightly differently than normal beer, although I don't understand the difference at all (happo-shu just tastes like beer to me, although it's not terribly good). Because the taxes on happo-shu are much lower than on beer, it's much cheaper for consumers, and this has sparked a price war that has brought the prices of virtually all alcoholic beverages down to as much as half what they were a few years ago, contributing to Japan's deflationary spiral. The current price leader is Suntory, though, with their new "Ad Draft Happo-shu." To lower the cost of the beer, other companies can advertise right on the front of the can. It's about $1.10 a can.

Do you have a cat's tongue? If so, it means that you can't eat hot food or drink hot drinks, just like a cat. The Japanese say that anyone who avoids hot food has a cat's tongue (neko jita). What is you have lazy eye? If so, then you are "rom-pari" which is Japanese for "Rome, Paris" -- i.e. one eye is looking at Rome and the other is looking at Paris. If you're thinning on top, you might have "bar code hair," as the Japanese say. Opening a bag of chips along its spine, so that the bag is spread out with the chips sitting on top, is called "omanko ake" (oh-MAHN-ko AH-kay), which literally means "to open so that it resembles the female private region." And if you sneeze, the Japanese say that someone must be gossiping about you (this comes up in anime quite often).

First of all, we're happy to announce that we'll be carrying U.S. release hentai DVDs in our San Diego office. We've got a few nice items in stock now, and will add more and more as time goes by. All DVDs will be stocked in San Diego for your ordering convenience. Feedback on the new Hentai DVD (USA) category is welcome.

Also, we've located the last remaining stock on the earth of our best-selling game Season of the Sakura, a very detailed love simulation game from the DOS era in which you interact with eight different girls (who look suspiciously like the characters from Evangelion, Rayearth and St. Tail). As a service to our loyal fans, we are making the last stock available at just $5. Also, look for an announcement of interest to fans of the early JAST USA games in week or so.

For the new update, we've got a lot of very nice wacky and bizarre items, starting with:

  • First, our very popular T-shirt line continues to sell well, and we've got a new one for you: a famous Japanese insult ("Your mother has a protruding navel") captured in one of our unique and bizarre T-shirts
  • We have some nice items for fans of beautiful swimsuit idols, including a gotta-have hardcover photobook for fans of Yuko Oguro, the charming 18 year old lovely idol
  • We've been bowled over by the popularity of the only-released-in-Japan items like the deluxe Light Saber and Star Wars lighting necklaces, so we've gotten more -- everything is now in stock, ready to go out to you
  • We've got some excellent new toy items, including a cool Gundam posable figure and cool toys from a popular manga in Japan, Gio Gio's Bizarre Adventure
  • Restocked toy items include the Reservoir Dogs Kubrick sets that sold out so fast, fresh stock of the popular Totoro Doll Collection, new figures and other items from Spirited Away, and more
  • For Hello Kitty fans, we've got fresh stock of the Hello Kitty Ping Pong set, along with many new items, including Kitty chopstick holders, Kitty hand mirrors, and much more
  • Also, we have fresh stock of the very cool Cup Noodle coffee cups that so just so cool
  • New snack items include delicious "Beer Pretz," spicy pretz that are made to taste extra good when eaten with beer
  • Also fresh stock of many items, including the long gummi strings called Himo-Q, tasty fried rice from Japan, Hamutaro onigiri mix, new miso soup, and more!
  • We've got the excellent trading cards of a super cute idol group called "Last Alive" too
  • We've got a cool "fortune egg," a egg that you break to reveal a different "lucky cat" inside that tells your fortune
  • Finally, new "wacky things from Japan" include a large bento box, cool sakura rice bowls, a dandy keychain which will keep you from losing your keys, more wacky erasers, and more!

For our adult customers, we've got many new 18+ products. They include:

  • First, we have the new Urecco, and it's a great issue, filled with Japan's top AV idols and models for you, including Megumi Osawa and Misa Nishida!
  • We have some nice rare older issues of magazines in stock, including a great item for Natsuko Tohno fans (very rare)
  • Also, cool new love hotel and kogal magazines for you to check out
  • We have great erotic photobook items for you too, starting with a new photobook in the bad-assed Yinling of Joytoy series, featuring Yinling, the knock-down gorgeous Taiwanese Race Queen
  • For manga lovers, we have a bunch of great new manga volumes for you, including fantasy erotic manga from Akane Comics, an incredible "dick girl" offering from Angel Comics, fun with cosplay, and much more
  • Also, for fans of bishoujo games and anime, see the dynamite paper protectors, beautiful plastic sleeves which you can keep important papers inside, but printed with incredible bishoujo artwork
  • For DVD collectors, many more items, starting with the erotic "The Idol" series release from Kuki, featuring three full video productions on a single DVD for you -- 180 minutes! (region free)
  • For fans of anime cosplay erotica, see the great new Cosplay Hunter from Big Morkal, with Capcom game cosplay sex, elevator girl costumes, and more (region free)
  • Kurumi Morishita has had one of the most amazing careers of any Indies AV idol, and you can see the best of her works from 1998-1999 in a new 120 minute release by SOD (region free)
  • See the lovely Sayaka Tsutsumi be teased and bullied by everyone around here in another great offering by SOD (region free)
  • For indies DVD fans, enjoy the incredibly sexy and bold "hip and vagina" performance by Mai Kuramoto, just dynamite (region 2)
  • Also, a really cool "Erosty Dance" DVD featuring incredibly sexy girls who do nothing but dance erotically for 90 minutes -- it's one of the coolest concepts we've seen in a long time (region 2)
  • Finally, Tomo has added a bunch of new-in-stock DVDs for you, including Lesbian Girls' School, Ayaka Fujisaki's excellent Bondage DX, Love Shake with Mirai Hoshizaki, the best-selling DVD by busty Kimiko Matsuzaka, and more!

J-List sells many cool things from Japan, including the low-priced boxes anime toy and snack sets like the Captain Harlock and Thunderbirds toys. Availability is always very limited on these items, so please hurry lest we run out before you can get the items you wanted. The full sets of the Harlock toys are running out fast, so we recommend you get them soon if you're interested.

Remember that until the end of the month, or while supplies last, you will get a free DVD present from us for every $100 in DVDs you spend at J-List, as our way of saying thanks. Each free DVD will be worth at least $10. Thanks for your support and enjoy your gift from J-List!