Tag Archives: Michael Jackson

マダコがビンのフタを開けた

28 Jun

Last December. I wrote a post about Japan’s “Eco” movement that mentioned a X-mas tree powered by an electric eel at the 江ノ島水族館 (Enoshima Aquarium) near Tokyo.

(Click here to read that post).

The 江ノ島水族館 (Enoshima Aquarium) has a YouTube page.

Well, scientists have said that the 「マダコ」 (“Common Octopus”) is intelligent.
If it’s put into a jar and the lid is then screwed shut, the octopus will watch and learn how the top was closed…and then it will reverse the process from inside the jar to open it and free itself.

The 江ノ島水族館 (Enoshima Aquarium) demonstrated this and put a video of it on their YouTube page.

Here’s the video:

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I’ve never been much of a Michael Jackson fan, but if you are…and you’re in Tokyo, the Tokyo Tower is having a special exclusive event since last month until July 11th titled “Michael Jackson – the official Lifetime collection“.

If you want to see Michael Jackson’s personal possessions, including his Rolls-Royce car and many other items, you should go to the Tokyo Tower by July 11th between the hours of 9:00AM – 10:00PM.

Admission is ¥2,000 for adults, ¥1,800 for high school and college students, and ¥1,500 for children between age 3 and junior high age. (Under 3 is free).

Last Friday was the one-year anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death.
To commemorate, Tokyo Tower allowed fifty die-hard fans who were willing to pay ¥100,000 (about US$1,000) to spend the night in the exhibit room surrounded by the collection of Michael Jackson’s possessions!
Supposedly, these fans were touched emotionally by the experience and felt the money was well spent.

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Also, this year is the 60th anniversary of the popular Japanese toy store chain “Kiddyland“.
So Kiddyland has decided it’s time to renovate their large multi-storied shop in 表参道 (Omotensando, Tokyo).

So on 2010 August 31, the current store will close for the renovations and a temporary shop will be opened on 2010 September 1st not far from the current location.

A map showing how to get from the current Kiddyland location to the temporary one (which will be above "Snoopy Town")

The new renovated Kiddyland will reopen in the summer of 2012 at it’s current location.

Here’s an artist’s rendition of the new store:

Headlines

5 Feb

Just a few stories that were in the news that got my attention:

★ In 1985, many of the biggest pop stars in America, including Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, and Bruce Springsteen, recorded a song together titled “We Are The World“.

The aim of the song was to raise money to help Africa. In fact, the group of singers were collectively known as “USA For Africa“.

And now, twenty-five years after the song was recorded, the producer of the song, Quincy Jones, has assembled another group of today’s most popular singers in America to sing a remake of the song.

This time the song is being used to help the victims of the earthquake in Haiti…and the song is being called “We Are The World 25 For Haiti“.

Asashoryu, the sumo champion is Japan has retired.

Asashoryu is from Mongolia

He’s a great sumo wrestler and earned the rank of 「横綱」 (Yokozuna…”Grand Champion”)…but he’s constantly gotten into trouble both inside and out of the ring.

His latest scandal was when he recently went out drinking and seriously injured a man when he went into a drunken rampage.

★ The annual 「札幌雪まつり」 (“Sapporo Snow Festival“) in Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan starts today and goes until 2010 February 11.

I went to this festival in 1992 and I can tell you the huge, elaborate snow sculptures are amazing! If you have a chance, you should go see this festival.

The Decade’s Most Iconic Images

2 Jan

If you click here you go visit a post on the “Huffington Post” site about the Most Iconic Images of 2000 – 2009.

I have never visited the Huffington Post site before so I’m not sure what the site is about…but the photos on that post brought back alot of memories of some major news events of the past ten years (not all of them good, unfortunately).

Here are a few images from that post:

The late Michael Jackson hanging his infant son over a railing; 2002 Nov 19

Former U.S. President Bush declaring the Iraq War as "Mission Accomplished"; 2003 May 1

Prisioner abuse at the Abu Ghaib Prison; 2003

The crash landing into the Hudson River that saved all passengers onboard; 2009 January 15

End of the first decade

21 Dec

The year 2009 will be over in ten days…but not only that, it’ll also be the end of the first decade of the 21st century.

So I began thinking about the biggest news stories of 2009 to the American public compared to the Japanese public.

So first the biggest U.S. news stories of 2009:

10. “The Miracle On The Hudson River” – The pilot of U.S. Airways flight 1549, Chesley Sullenberger safely crash landed his plane in the Hudson River and saved all of his passengers’ lives.

9. “U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy Died” – Brother of former U.S. President John F. Kennedy died on 2009 August 25.
8. “Fort Hood Rampage” – Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan of the U.S. Army went on a shooting rampage on 2009 November 5 and killed 13 people and injured 30 others.
7. “Michael Jackson Died” – On 2009 June 25 at age 50.
6. “Obama To Send More Troops To Afghanistan” – On 2009 December 1, U.S. President Obama made the announcement that 30,000 more soldiers would be sent to Afghanistan by the summer of 2010.
5. “Swine Flu” – Called 「新型インフルエンザ」 (“New ‘Flu“) in Japan, the World Health Organization announced it as an international public health concern in 2009 April.
4. “Auto Industry” – In early 2009, two out America’s “Big Three” auto-makers filed for bankruptcy…the other, Ford, nearly did.
3. “Health Care” – America’s health care system underwent reform.
2. “Obama Inauguration” – In 2009 January, U.S. President was sworn into office.
1. “The Economy” – Just like the rest of the industrialized world, America fell into a recession.

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And the biggest news stories of 2009 in Japan:

10. “Ichihashi Arrested” – On 2009 November 11, Tatsuya Ichihashi was finally arrested for the murder of an English teacher from England.

(Click here to read my post for more details).

9. “¥12,000 Handouts” – In an effort to boost the economy, the Japanese government gave ¥12,000 to every resident in Japan.
8. “First-ever Budget Debate” – A large number of Japanese went to the first-ever debate of wasteful government spending. Such a thing has never been attended by the public before in Japan.
7. “Obama Inauguartion” – This was big news in Japan too.
6. “Noriko Sakai Arrested For Drugs” – Drug use is extremely uncommon in Japan, and Noriko Sakai is a celebrety who had a very clean image in Japan…until she and her husband were arrested for using the drug called “Ecstasy“.
5. “¥1000 Flat Toll Road Charge” – In another effort to stimuate the economy, tolls on roads were given a flat rate of ¥l000 per day regardless the distance on certain days.
4. “Lay Judge System” – Some cases in Japanese courts have begun using a “lay judge” (“Jury”) trial system. Until this year, all verdicts in all court cases were decided by a judge (or panel of judges).
3. “Democratic Party Landslide” – Prime Minister Hatoyama was elected this year. He’s a member of the Deocratic Party Of Japan…the Liberal Democratic Party has won every previous election in Japan for many years.
2. “Michael Jackson Died” – This was big news all over the world.
1. 「新型インフルエンザ」 – The “Swine Flu”. About a hundred people have died from it in Japan.

What were the biggest news stories of 2009 to you?
How about the biggest news story of the first decade of the 21st century? I think it must be the 2001 September 11 attack on the World Trade Center in America.

Best selling albums of all time

19 Dec

What do you think the best-selling albums of all time are?

Yesterday I saw a list of the world’s 75 best-selling albums ever. I was surprised that though The Beatles have a few albums on the list…their highest ranking album is only at #15 (“Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band“).

I was surprised that Elvis Presley isn’t on the list at all, and I was disappointed that KISS isn’t on the list at all either.

Even though I don’t like his music, I wasn’t surprised that Michael Jackson‘s “Thriller” album is the number one best-selling record of all time (110 million units sold).

The number two record didn’t even sell half that many.
I have never owned a Michael Jackson record…but I do have the number two album.
What do you guess the second best-selling record ever is?

It’s “Back In Black” by AC/DC. An excellent album! Do you own a copy?

AC/DC "Back In Black" (49 million units sold)

Here are the top ten best selling albums ever:

1. Michael Jackson “Thriller
2. AC/DC “Back In Black
3. Pink Floyd “The Dark Side Of The Moon
4. Meat Loaf “Bat Out Of Hell
5. Eagles “Their Greatest Hits 1971-75
6. Various Artists “Dirty Dancing” OST
7. Whitney Houston “The Bodyguard” OST
8. Andrew Lloyd Webber “The Phantom Of The Opera” (musical score)
9. Backstreet Boys “Millennium
10. The Bee Gees “Saturday Night Fever” OST

I can’t believe Whitney Houston and The Backstreet Boys sold more albums than KISS, The Beatles or Black Sabbath!

Here are some albums that I own that are on the list:

AC/DC "Back In Black" (#2)

Meat Loaf "Bat Out Of Hell" (#4)

Led Zeppelin "IV" (#15)

Led Zeppelin "IV" (#13)

Guns 'N' Roses "Appetite For Destruction" (#32)

Metallica "Don't Tread On Me" / ('The Black Album') (#50)

American 80s icons died

26 Jun

A couple of weeks ago, David Carredine, famous from the U.S. TV show “Kung Fu” from the 70s / 80s died.

Then two days ago, Ed McMahon, famous from the “Tonight Show” and “Star Search” died.

Yesterday, Farrah Fawcett from “Charlie’s Angels” died.

And right now, the TV morning variety shows are saying Michael Jackson may have just died.

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