Metropolis Magazine
Issue #805 - Friday, Aug 28th, 2009
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tarento watch

TARO FUJIMOTO/JAPAN TODAY
Top model Yuri Ebihara (far right), 29, Olympic marathon silver medalist Yuko Arimori, 42, and former major league baseball player Tsuyoshi Shinjo, 37, have been signed up by mobile carrier KDDI au to promote its “Green Road Project,” through which au users can donate ¥1 for each kilometer they walk or run. The money raised will be used to buy seeds of plants and vegetables to distribute for free at au shops as part of its greenery project. After Shinjo started working out on a running machine during the event, Ebi-chan gushed: “He is so cool. I like men who give it their all when they try something.” Ebihara also announced that she has started designing clothes for new fashion brand Swingle under the theme of “Clever & Cute.” “We’re targeting working women who are sensitive to fashion trends,” she said. Guys, take note: Ebi-chan also announced that she is looking for a boyfriend. CB


Celebrated J-pop singer DJ Ozma, who announced his retirement last year, sold 300 of his stage costumes on Yahoo!Auction to raise money for the poor in Bangladesh… Actor Hiroki Narimiya, 26, (Sakuran) has been appointed Japan-Hong Kong Tourism Exchange Goodwill Ambassador 2009, succeeding actress Yoshino Kimura (Blindness)… Actress Satomi Ishihara, 22, has been seen at various events recently wearing a JAL flight attendant’s uniform as part of her promotion for the DVD release of her film Flying Rabbits, about the airline’s basketball team. CB


niche watch

Courtesy of Céléb de Tomato

If you ever wake up in the mood for toast with tomato jam and want to wash it down with tomato juice, followed by tomato sponge cake for dessert, then Tokyo has the shop for you. Céléb de Tomato in Aoyama offers the red globes of goodness in all their forms: raw (two dozen varieties), juiced (both bottled and fresh-squeezed), jellied, dried, semi-dried, pickled, and made into pizza sauce, ketchup and sweets. There’s also a small restaurant-café serving the likes of inasalata caprese, caponata and other tomato-infused dishes, most with an Italian bent. All the produce is sourced from local farms, and if you think this shop is too niche to survive, think again: during the past six months, new branches have opened in the tony neighborhoods of Daikanyama and Omotesando.

2-2-2 Shibuya. Tel: 03-5766-3005. Closed some Mon & Tue. Nearest stn: Shibuya or Omotesando. www.celeb-de-tomato.com

pseudo-eigo
The latest innovations in katakana English

スタ
バカ

Suta-baka
Origin: combination of “Star” and baka (nutty)
Meaning: a person who’s crazy about Starbucks
Example: 私はスターバックスはまぁまぁだと思うけど、友達のヒデはかなりスタバカ; Watashi wa sutaba wa ma ma dato omoukedo, tomodachi no Hide wa kanari suta-baka; I think Starbucks is OK, but my friend Hide is a real geek about it

チャームポイント

Chamu-pointo
Origin: charm point
Meaning: attractive feature or characteristic
Example: 彼のチャームポイントはエクボだね; Kareno chamu pointo wa ekubo dane; His dimple is his strong point

スリーサイズ

Surii-saizu
Origin: three sizes
Meaning: a person’s measurements, usually bust, waist and hips
Example: 彼女はスリーサイズが78, 56, 82だと言ってるけど、どうかな; Kanojo wa surii-saizu ga 78, 56, 82 da to itteru kedo, dou ka na; She says her measurements are B78cm, W56cm, H82cm, but I wonder…

バージンロード

Baajin-ro-do
Origin: virgin road
Meaning: “aisle,” as in what a bride walks down at her wedding
Example: いつか素敵なウエディングドレスを着てバージンロードを歩きたい; Itsuka suteki na uedingu doresu wo kite baajin rodo wo aruku to; One day I want to walk down the aisle wearing a beautiful wedding dress

オフ
レコ

Ofu reco
Origin: shortening of “off the record”
Meaning: not for publication; on the qt
Example: 彼の逮捕歴はオフレコね; Kare no taiho reki wa ofu reco ne; His police record has not been made public



beat the rush

How can you tell when a student on the train is likely to give up his seat? Be aware of the types of schools located near train stations on your line, and look for the following clues

Source: Tsukin Densha de Suwaru Gijutsu (Techniques for Getting a Seat on a Commuter Train) by Hajime Yorozu (Kanki Shuppan, 2005)

behind the numbers

How many fries in an S-size pack?

Source: Manual count of French fries bought Monday, Feb 23, in Shibuya-ku


mark the date

MAR
08
Honeybee Day 3/8 can be read in Japanese as mitsu-bachi (bee), making it an ideal date to celebrate the industrious insects
MAR
15
Shoe Memorial Day Commemorates the 1870 opening of Japan’s first factory for Western-style footwear. Imported shoes, apparently, were too large
MAR
25
Electricity Memorial Day The first electric bulb in Japan was lit on this day back in 1878, paving the way for domestic electrification
MAR
27
Sakura Day Started by the Japan Cherry Blossom Association in 1992, because hanami wasn’t already popular enough. Presumably


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