We've taken to spending our weekends getting to know our own prefecture, exploring the backroads of Gunma, where we live, in our Mazda Bongo Friendee. A rural prefecture with a population of 2 million located right in the center of Japan's main island of Honshu, Gunma is famous for mountains, water, poetry (a famous Japanese poet was born here), politicians (three of Japan's past prime ministers hail from our prefecture), and cold, biting wind in the winter, called kara-kaze. Some of the best hot springs can be found in Gunma, and quite frequently we roam around looking for undiscovered places to take a hot bath. There are other fun attractions, such as Gunma Flower Park, where you can see flowers from all over the world; Tobu World Square, with scale replicas of architectural wonders of the world; and Green Bokujo, a kind of mock farm where city folks can interact with farm animals. For something entirely different, go to Kronenberg, a mock-up replica of a German village in the mountains near us, complete with embarrassed-looking German gaijin standing around. But they have good beer and sausages! Last weekend we went to Gunma Safari Park, where you can see animals of Africa from inside your car, although my kids love the game Zoo Tycoon, so they were more interested in seeing zookeepers raking up poo, like they do in the game.
When I got here 12 years ago, I noticed many things that the Japanese were very fond of, which seemed odd to me and my fresh-from-the-States sensibilities. The Japanese just love corn soup, and you can buy it in most restaurants -- they even have canned corn soup sold in vending machines, which is great to hold in your hands on winter mornings. Audrey Hepburn is the favorite actress of many Japanese, and her film Roman Holiday is one of the most well-known movies among Japanese women. Sydney Sheldon is one of the most popular Western authors, and his books are all translated into Japanese and appear in most every bookstore (usually alongside the translated works of Agatha Christie). Then there are some things from the U.S. that Japanese aren't so fond of. Mexican style beans are one -- Japanese nearly always hate these when they eat them for the first time, because in Japan, beans are supposed to be sweet. (Foreigners usually hate Japanese beans for the same reason.) Another product the Japanese usually can't handle is root beer, which is detested universally by Japanese, who think it tastes like the pain relieving Salonpas. Most Japanese can handle Dr. Pepper okay. Japanese also tend to not eat bread crusts, and in fact you can buy bread in the supermarket with the crusts already cut off -- which might explain why Japanese women are seemingly all constipated.
We've become aware that more and more, emails sent from the jlist.com domain are being blocked by ISPs, due to the ever-worsening problem with spam. AOL blocks our mails quite often, which obviously makes it impossible for us to send you updates on orders have made. If you ever feel you're not getting a mail you should have gotten from J-List, please email us and we'll look into your order and try to mail you from another account. Thanks for your understanding.
For the new update, we've got some excellent products from Japan for you. They include:
- First, for fans of our delicious Japanese snacks, we've got delicious winter-only March of the Koalas candy, as well as a traditional Japanese "kneading candy" which you mix in the air with chopsticks to make it ready to eat -- really fun
- Also, we've got some new varieties of sugarless gum from Japan, featuring the popular xylitol, a delicious sugar substitute that strengthens your teeth (it's from Finland, go figure)
- We have a great art book for fans of Dead or Alive Xtreme Volleyball, featuring some of the most realistic and beautiful CG gals we've ever seen
- Japan is home to many cute things -- now we've got a cute little electronic pen that comes out an egg right before your eyes
- Also, we've got a really cute mini hamster fan which will keep you cool in all seasons, and it's adorable, too
- For Gundam fans, we have a really cool line of detailed Gundam candy toys, which include a Gundam toy you can put together along with candy to eat
- The Groomy line of plush pets, which include soft leather undersides for wiping your computer monitor -- now we have Strap Groomy, cute plush pets with phone straps, which allow you to attach them to cameras, cellular phones, etc.
- For our "wacky things from Japan" fans, we've got more Japanese maps, of Nagoya, Tokyo and Gunma Pref.
- Domo-kun fans, we've added stock of many different items, including the Domo-kun phone straps, Domo-kun plush toys and square cubes, Domo-kun stationary and more
- We love to promote the study of Japanese, and we've got more wacky mini-dictionaries in stock, as well as the infamous "kanji toilet paper" with kanji quizzes printed on each roll
- For fans of really Japanese things, we have some cool chopsticks with "lucky cat" printed on them
- Also, a major restocking of our bizarre Japanese headbands (hachimaki), with slogans like "certain victory" "I will pass the test" "Guts" and more
- We love the cool toy line Panda-Z, which features a cute panda boy who pilots a giant panda robot -- now you can play with his enemy, Black Ham Gear, featuring the evil Dr. Jangarly
- Japan is having a big boom of samurai dramas on TV now -- join in the fun with a toy replica samurai sword set
- Finally, we've got great items for your kitchen, a cute metal sign in Japanese, pocket igo for anyone who wants to try the ancient Japanese game of go, fresh stock of wacky Hello Kitty items, and more!
For our 18+ customers, we've got many new products. They include:
- For fans of Japan's extra-wide adult magazine Bejean, we've got the new issue, packed with such lovely professional JAV idols as Sola Aoi, Sakura Shiratori, Ai Kurosawa and more
- Next we have limited stock of the new Bachelor, featuring beautiful women from the around the world, including Eastern Europe, the U.S., Russia, and other countries
- For fans of Japan's beautiful photobooks, we have the lovely new hardcover offering if Miku Matsumoto, featuring her latest photos
- Also, a great hardcover photobook by a beautiful idol with the unlikely name of Cutey Suzuki
- See a beautiful selection of photos of the sexy swimsuit idol Maiko Tohno, shot in Indonesia
- Then follow the best indies adult videos in Indies Best Title 737, featuring sample shots of 737 different productions
- J-List's stock of erotic hentai comics from Japan is second to none, and we've added even more titles to our stock for you: a collection of top-notch erotic stories by Kirara Moe, sexual adventures with a home tutor (a major Japanese fetish), the newest installment of Lewd Diary, and more
- Next we've got even more great erotic doujinshi for you, sexually parodying the most popular anime series in Japan right now
- Also: a real treat, a set of four CD-ROMs with the four chapters of the Urotsukidoji (Wandering Kid) hentai series on them, a classic for all hentai fans to see
- J-List carries a line of Japanese adult toys and other products, including parody items -- we've got more wacky Pokemon condoms in stock for you
- Enjoy some fantastic new adult DVDs from Japan, with Nao Oikawa's 4 Hours Special from Million -- 240 minutes of superb sex with Japan's top JAV idol! (region free)
- Then enjoy the "Shameless Costume Play Venus" of Ayana Nanjo, a fanatically erotic actress who performs for you in a variety of sexy costumes, stewardess, SM queen, maid, and more, by SOD (region free)
- Then sit back and enjoy the erotic Kei Morikawa, a solemn and beautiful goddess who shows you her erotic kiss, tekoki, fella, and sex (region free)
- For fans of girl-on-girl action, enjoy a great all female production by Wanz Factory, featuring five fabulous Tokyo kogals (region 2)
- Then, Yui Hasegawa provides "lip service" in a great new indies release by Wanz (region 2)
- Finally, look for a huge number of "back in stock" items, including photobooks, DVDs, manga and more, which were out of stock but are available again for one last time. (Remember you can check the entire J-List with the View All Products link in the upper left hand corner of the site.)
Remember that J-List carries a wide variety of snacks from Japan, with about 100 different items in stock at all times, with everything from Pocky (popular chocolate covered sticks) to Japan's famous spicy caffeine gum, Black Black. Because J-List is based at the source, right there in the heart of Japan, we've got hundreds of cool and fun items that have never made it out of Japan, which you can order. We are always adding to our snack section too, so check back often!