August is drawing to a close, and that means that summer vacation is ending for kids in Japan. Japan is a very seasonal place, and come Sept. 1st, virtually all pools and beaches in the country will be closed, despite the fact that September is still plenty hot. One aspect of summer vacation for Japanese children is rushing to get your homework done -- yes, students are given quite a lot of homework to do during the summer break, and there never seems to be enough time to get it all done before the last few days of August. Japanese summer vacations are much shorter than in the U.S., just six weeks instead of three months. As a parent, I think the combination of shorter summer breaks and homework, which help limit how much students forget, are both great ideas.
For one reason or another, some phrases in English have burned themselves on the collective consciousness of the Japanese, and are quite famous here. When an American named Dr. Clark (universally known as "Clark-hakase" HA-KA-say) went to Sapporo to help establish what would become Sapporo University, he left the following advice to his Japanese hosts: "Boys, be ambitious!" (i.e., strive to achieve excellence in all that you do). These three words are studied by all Japanese, and somehow manage to pop up all over the place in one form or another. (There's a manga series called "Boys Be..." that is based on this phrase.) When pop singer Momoe Yamaguchi retired from singing, she sang a song to her fans that went "Thank you for your kindness...thank you for your tenderness" and as a result, virtually all Japanese over 30 know this famous phrase. Famous speeches by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Abraham Lincoln ("Government for the people, by the people, and of the people") are studied in school the same way we studied Shakespeare in the U.S., too.
Okinawa is an interesting place, and is very much the "Hawaii" of Japan. A separate island kingdom until 1609 when it was annexed, Okinawa has a very interesting culture that's completely different from that of Japan. The scene of one of the worst battles of World War II in which 260,000 people died, Okinawa became a part of the U.S. from after the war until it was returned to Japan in 1972. Like all corners of Japan, it's got various foods that it's famous for, which include a variation of ramen with soup made from bonito fish. Many of Japan's pop singers come from Okinawa, too, including Speed, Amuro Namie and Da Pump. J-List's Yasu, who is going to be a father in December, is going to Okinawa with his wife over the weekend, for a last trip with his wife before the baby is born.
At J-List, we love the excellent bishoujo CD-ROM game products of Peach Princess, which include the best-selling X-Change, Tokimeki Check in!, Critical Point, Water Closet and Snow Drop. From now through the end of September, we're happy to announce that we'll give free shipping in the U.S./Canada (half price shipping for international) for all titles by Peach Princess. It's a great time to you to pick up the games you were waiting to get! All games by Peach Princess are translated into English and are 100% uncensored, and they're great fun to play!
For the new update, we've got some excellent new items for you, including:
- First, we've got a very nice new item for Star Wars fans and collectors: a giant-sized "completed model" of a Clone Trooper created for the Japanese market by Kotobukiya and ArtFX
- Also, the long-lost Star Wars puzzles that were not posted on Monday, but are on the site now (although stock is limited so they might sell out quickly)
- For fans of Gundam who wished they had a cute robot like Haro, friend of Amuro Rei and Camille in the first two Gundam series, we've got the super-cool Haro robot toy from Bandai in stock!
- For fans of Leiji Matsumoto's famous anime works, we've got a Captain Harlock figure set as well as limited stock of the original Space Battleship Yamato manga in stock
- We love finding things that can't be found outside of Japan, and we've got some nice Sanrio items for you, including a nice Hello Kitty electric toothbrush and an ice cube tray that makes 3D Sanrio characters in ice
- Also, we've added stock of the very nice Kimono Hello Kitty plush toys that had sold out
- For fans of Japanese snacks, we've got new onigiri (rice ball) mix, delicious Mexican fried rice mix, several new types of Japanese miso soup, Japanese "hakka" peppermint candy, and more
- We've got some nice photobooks for you too, including the charming swimsuit photobook of Atsuko Kurusu
- Japan has many lovely idols who are charming and pretty, and we've got the excellent "image DVD" of Marika Matsumoto in stock for you (region 2 DVD).
- We've got many fun kitchen-related items today, including a handy way to crush garlic, a handy ladel for making home-made donuts, new bento boxes, and a spiffy serving board for serving sushi
- Also, we've added stock of the Princess Mononoke, Whisper of the Heart and My Neighbor Totoro, the Japan DVD releases that come with full English subtitles and dubbed tracks (region 2)
- For Ultraman fans, a super alarm clock you won't want to miss out on
- Finally, we've got other cute stuff, including fresh stock of "Afro Ken" (the dog with a 'fro) letter sets, a great Totoro table clock and cuckoo clock (!), and fresh stock of a popular Totoro music box.
For our adult customers, we've got many new 18+ products, too, including:
- For fans of Japanese adult magazines, especially the sassy class of Japanese girl known as "kogal," we've got the very nice new Urecco Gal in stock for you
- Also, a special item for Mai Hagiwara fans, a photobook magazine dedicated entirely to the best erotic photos of Mai's career
- For fans of Japan's bishoujo games, we have the new issue of Push!! which comes complete with two CD-ROMs of stuff for you to check out
- We always strive to carry excellent photobooks for you, and we've got some nice ones in for you today (including the lovely Sola Aoi's new hardcover photobook), both new and fresh stock of past popular items
- For doujinshi fans, we've got another volley of two dozen or so of these highly-collectible works, all printed and sold at the past summer Comic Market -- but we have extremely limited stock of these items
- Also, we've got stock of a top-quality erotic doujinshi in the "Nuki Lum" (Make Lum Come) series by Fujio Okamoto that's *all color* and comes with a hentai CD-ROM, too
- For hentai manga fans, enjoy the items we've posted for you, including the very erotic "Touch the Breasts" erotic comic, Kiss Me in an Erotic Way, and more!
- We were surprised and pleased with the warm reception our Japanese "dutch wives" (inflatable love pillows based on famous Japanese AV idols), so we've restocked them -- in stock are Ai Kurosawa, Hitomi Hayasaka and Akari Yamazaki
- In our San Diego office, we've added fresh stock of English-language hentai DVDs for you to browse and check out
- We've got some excellent DVDs for you, starting with fresh stock of two best-selling hits, "Excellent Double Bomb" by Mai Shiina and the lovely Mizuno Kanou (aka Jun Kusanagi); and the wonderful Evangelion cosplay erotica release, "Costume Play Perfection" (region free)
- We've got a superb new lesbian performance, brought to you by Princess Road and Dogma (region free)
- The "History of Kurumi Morishita" releases continue, with a new collection of her best works from SOD (region free)
- Enjoy the best erotic kissing Japan has to offer in a new production, "Kiss of the Year 2002," by Deep's (region free)
- We love the sultry Mirai Hoshizaki, and we love the bold AV put out by Wanz Factory -- enjoy her new "Private Observation of Female Body" series (region 2)
- Finally, we've restocked many popular titles, including the No Cut!! series, Sally Yoshino's popular "Abnormal Privacy," Nao Hirosue's dick girl release "Penis Venus," fresh stock of the dramatic and erotic "Roommate" with Kurumi Morishita and Ai Nagase, and many more!
The "top 5" has been updated for the past week again, so you can see what is popular at J-List these days. You can click each category too, to browse the items that are selling the best.
The J-Mate site has been updated again for you, too, with a review of Mayu Koizumi's bold "Fuckin' of Hundred" in which she performs with a whopping 100 Japanese amateur men who are eager to get to be with such a hot woman. There are many screenshots so you can get a good idea of what this title is like. The URL for J-Mate is http://www.jmate.com/ -- enjoy!