Singer Hiromi Go, 53, had the enviable job of posing with eight gorgeous semifinalists of the recent Lux Shine Audition. The winner will earn a scholarship and the chance to star in a commercial for the brand’s hair products next year alongside a Hollywood actress. Go offered some words of wisdom to the women on surviving in the world of show business, telling them not to compare themselves with others. Later, he commented on the key to his own long career. “I’m like a 24-hour hot-water system,” he declared. “I’m always on, never off.” Each contestant has been provided with a ¥100 million “hair insurance” policy in order to maintain their luscious locks throughout the competition. The poll on the Lux website (www.luxfilm.jp) will be open to the general public until July 31, at which time four finalists will be selected to participate in the final audition scheduled for late September. Satomi Honda
Actress Ryoko Yonekura, 33, blew reporters away at Akasaka Garden City after turning up in a stunning backless dress and ¥800,000 necklace to accept the first “Platinum Goddess” award, held by PR firm Platinum Guild International and fashion magazine Domani… On the subject of awards, actress Meisa Kuroki, 21, is this year’s winner of the “Miss Lily” prize, an annual honor bestowed by the International Flower Bulb Center to women who are judged to look the best with lilies… TV celebrity Yuka, 29, graces the cover of the August issue of fashion magazine Frau. Inside, she’s featured in a 12-page spread titled “Loosening Up the Mind and Body,” which boasts an impressive array of pictures of Yuka taken in Hawaii. CB
What: Next-generation electric bus
Where: Kanagawa Prefecture
Who: Keio University scientist Hiroshi Shimizu in collaboration with private and public transportation companies
Why: To help meet Kanagawa Prefecture’s goal of developing a 3,000-strong fleet of electric vehicles in the next five years, Keio University is drawing up plans for “Japan’s first electric bus made from scratch.” The eight-wheeled, zero-emission vehicle will run on lithium-ion batteries that give it a range of 200km. It is also barrier-free and will likely be able to carry 60 passengers.
Source: The Mainichi Daily News
Before taking your next stroll up Center-Gai, bone up on the latest gyaru-go so that you can talk the talk like a Shibuya Girl
Origin: abbreviation of mukatsuku
Meaning: angry; irritated
Origin: combination of geki (“ultra-”) and achu, an abbreviation of atsui (“hot”)
Meaning: to like someone or something very much
Origin: abbreviation of shikato suru (ignore) and meeru (email)
Meaning: to ignore someone’s email
Origin: abbreviation of “pretty price”
Meaning: a bargain
Origin: literally, “two girls as one”
Meaning: coordinated outfits; “pair look”
Source: Fuji TV
Imagine the surprise at Metropolis HQ when our morning Takkyubin delivery included a massive dose of mammoth. Well, not actual fossilized remains or anything, but a case of the new Mammoth Meat!? snacks from Tohato. These thin, disk-like chips come in two flavors—Siberian Salt and Yakiniku Tare—and were developed as a “primal experience snack aimed at men who dream of life in the primitive age.” After an office-wide taste test, opinion was mixed: some staffers felt they were “reminiscent of dog treats,” while others found them to be salty and delicious. The chips go on sale August 3 at conbini nationwide (¥130 per 45g bag). And good news for all those on a low-mammoth diet: although the ingredients list mentions pork, there are no ancient woolly beasts inside.
“I was informed by the Brazilian Football Association that players in that country have taken around 300,000 shots on goal before turning professional. Here in Japan, it’s only about 5,000. That’s 60 times less. At a young age, players aren’t used to shooting. That’s why the J. League is boring—there are not enough shots on goal.”—Japan Football Association president Motoaki Inukai, July 13, 2009
Source: The Asahi Shimbun
How much would you pay to experience love at first sight?
Men in their 20s ¥69,762
Women in their 20s ¥17,294
Men in their 30s ¥98,880
Women in their 30s ¥9,073
Source: Innovation Kitchen, via Mixi
“Deco-qlo” clubs are becoming increasingly popular among people who enjoy dyeing and adding decorations to apparel from Uniqlo (http://oc-i.jp/community/682)
The Pacific Asia Resource Center (www.parc-jp.org), a Tokyo-based NGO, is offering what it calls “Japan’s first activist training program”
A local company called Office Agents (http://office-agents.com) rents out wedding guests for people who “don’t want to tell their partner that they do not have many friends”
The Japan Beach Sumo Association (www.beachsumo.org), which holds friendly competitions around the country for kids and families, also seeks to “raise community awareness about trash and global warming”
A company in Tokyo called Tri-Wall (www.tri-wall.co.jp) offers eco-friendly coffins that emit “just one-third the amount of hazardous substances during cremation”
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