Tag Archives: universal studios japan

Tokyo is to Osaka what New York is to California

26 Nov

My oldest daughter’s high school class took a three-day field trip to the Western Japan city of 大阪 (Osaka).

All of the photos in this post were taken by her during this trip.

The headquarters of the Japanese "Glico Candy Co.", Osaka, Japan

Have you ever visited Osaka? Have you ever visited Tokyo?
Did you notice how different they food and the people are?

Some people say that Tokyo is famous for fashion and Osaka is famous for food.
Do you know the delicious Japanese dishes 「お好み焼き」 (Okonomiyaki) and 「たこ焼き」 (Takoyaki)? Did you know that they are both “Osaka dishes”?

That’s not to say that Tokyo doesn’t have delicious food. In fact, Tokyo has more Michelin Star restaurants than any other city in the world.

And Tokyo has original dishes as well. Have you ever tried 「もんじゃ焼き」 (Monja-yaki)?
I guess you could call it “Tokyo-style Okonomiyaki”.

People from Osaka are more outgoing and friendly compared to people in Tokyo. A large number of Japan’s most famous comedians live and work in Tokyo but they’re actually from Osaka.
People in Osaka are famous for asking shop clerks for a discount when they shop. But that’s not done in Tokyo…here people just pay the listed price. People in Tokyo don’t feel comfortable “bargaining” for a discount.

Personally I think Osaka is a fun place to visit but I feel more comfortable in Tokyo than any other city. I enjoy living here. It has become “home”.

Anyways here are the rest of the photos that my daughter took that don’t have her or any of her friends in them:

The famous "Kani-Doraku" seafood restaurant

A type of "Takoyaki" called "Akashiyaki"

"Carl Corn Puffs" snack logo

The famous "Kuidaore-Tarou" statue

A train advertising "Universal Studios Japan" amusement park, which is in Osaka

Entrance to Universal Studios Japan (USJ) with X-mas decorations

Snoopy and Hello Kitty "Nikuman" meat-rolls at Universal Studios Japan. I guess Universal Studios in America doesn't have these.

Is "Hello Kitty" at the Unversal Studios parks in the U.S. too?

The giant X-mas tree at USJ.

Hard Rock Cafe Japan

12 Jan

When I came to Japan in 1990 there was only one “Hard Rock Cafe” in this country at that time.
It was the “Hard Rock Cafe, Tokyo” in 六本木 (Roppongi, Tokyo) with the gorilla hanging on the window.

Back then, I went to the Hard Rock Cafe occasionally…mainly because it was a popular place around the world back then and, as Japan only had one HRC back then, it was almost certain that American and European rock musicians would stop by there after their shows on their Japan tours.

I talked to Van Halen, Blue Murder, and Bon Jovi in the Hard Rock Cafe, Tokyo.

But as time went by, Hard Rock Cafe set up more and more shops in Japan.
I don’t know why. I don’t think they’re very popular anymore. The food and drinks aren’t so good and they’re over-priced, in my opinion.
I don’t eat at the Hard Rock Cafe anymore. I haven’t been inside one in many years.

I do like the collection of guitars and gold records that they decorate their walls with…and the KISS memorabilia that seems to be at each of their restaurants, though.

But now in Japan, there are eight Hard Rock Cafe restaurants:

Hard Rock Cafe, Tokyo in 六本木 (Roppongi, Tokyo),

Hard Rock Cafe, Uyeno-eki in 上野駅 (Ueno Train Station, Tokyo),

Hard Rock Cafe, “Narita-Tokyo” in 千葉県成田市 (Narita, Chiba)…just like “Tokyo Disneyland” and “Narita Airport“, this HRC is in Chiba, Japan which is near Tokyo,

Hard Rock Cafe, Yokohama in 横浜 (Yokohama),

Hard Rock Cafe, Nagoya in 名古屋 (Nagoya),

Hard Rock Cafe, Fukuoka in 福岡 (Fukuoka),

Hard Rock Cafe, Osaka in 大阪 (Osaka), and

Hard Rock Cafe, Universal Studios Japan at the Universal Studios Japan in 大阪 (Osaka).

I passed by a Hard Rock Cafe yesterday and noticed that they’re having a “HRC meets Hello Kitty” campaign.

This doesn’t really interest me…as I wrote above, I don’t eat at Hard Rock Cafe and my wife and daughters aren’t into Hello Kitty (And I certainly don’t care about Kitty-chan either), but if you want to see the “HRC meets Hello Kitty” merchandise then click here.

Do they have many Hard Rock Cafe restaurants in your part of the world?
Have you visited many? Do you go there often? Have you been to any of them in Japan?
Do they sell “HRC meets Hello Kitty” merchandise in your city? Would you buy it?

World News

15 Jan

Some recent news from around the world that made an impression on me.

japan1 JAPAN
  • On Saturday, January 10, 2009, three 17-year old high school students in Tokyo risked their lives to rescue a blind man who fell off of a train station platform.
    Without hesitation, they rushed over and pulled him back onto the platform to safety moments before a train pulled into the station.
    They were awarded letter of commendation from both the train station and the local fire department.
  • Wednesday, January 14, 2009, a forty-five year old professor at 「中央大学」 (Chuo University) in Tokyo was stabbed to death in the school’s restroom.
    The motive is unknown and the killer is still at large (as of this writing).
  • A 54-year old man who owns a medicine distribution company got a perm hair style so that he could more closely resemble his twenty-year-old son and attempted to take a test in his son’s place so that his son could get his OTC drug handling license to work at his company.
    He was caught when the test administrator notice he looked unusually old for being twenty.
  • America’s Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. currently owns 41% of Universal Studios Japan‘s shares. They are making a take-over bid to gain the remaining 59 shares and own the amusement park outright.
  • U.S. Ambassador to Japan, Thomas Schieffer left Japan today to return to America as his post ends with the change of the U.S. president this month. Schieffer was the Ambassador to Japan since April 2005.
china1 CHINA
  • A group of thirteen people in China were arrested for riding up on motorcycles and snatching toddlers to sell to people in other parts of the country for prices ranging between US$125 to US$3,800.
  • China recently surpassed Germany to become the world’s third largest economy. The U.S. and Japan are still far ahead as the number one and two world economies, respectively.
australia AUSTRALIA
  • Chemical pollution is the assumed cause of a recent spate of two-headed fish being spawned in Australia.
  • Two Australian brothers in their early twenties were vacationing with their parents in New Zealand were killed when tons of falling ice fell on them at Fox Glacier, a tourist spot in New Zealand.
    The youngest brother’s body was never recovered, and he had the keys to their rental car in his pocket.
    Without the keys, the car rental company told the parents, they would have to pay NZ$1,950 (US$1,085) to have the car towed back to the rental office and have new keys made.
    After being relentlessly criticized for being heartless by both Australia and New Zealand, the rental car company finally decided to waive the charges.
  • A man in California was arrested for trying to sell his fourteen-year-old daughter for US$16,000, one hundred crates of beer, and some cases of meat!

Have you heard this news stories? What do you think?