Superbowl of soup bowl goes to Japanese champIn other news, Bloomberg is still paying William Pesek, long after his shōmikigen has passed.
Alex Kennedy, Singapore - July 29, 2008 - A small but enthusiastic crowd got its first taste of professional eating yesterday as the sports' two titans made their debut in the city-state.
About 300 competitive eating fans roared as local favourite Takeru Kobayashi, of Japan, slammed home five kilograms of chicken satay in 12 minutes...
Eel drink for Japan's hot summer
TOKYO (AP) — It's the hottest season of the year in Japan, and that means it's eel season. So, bottom's up!
A canned drink called "Unagi Nobori," or "Surging Eel," made by Japan Tobacco Inc., hit the nation's stores this month just ahead of Japan's annual eel-eating season, company spokesman Kazunori Hayashi said Monday.
"It's mainly for men who are exhausted by the summer's heat," Hayashi said of the beverage, believed to be the first mass-produced eel drink in Japan.
Many Japanese believe eating eel boosts stamina in hot weather.
The fizzy, yellow-colored drink contains extracts from the head and bones of eel and five vitamins — A, B1, B2, D and E — contained in the fish...
Celebrating the navel in Japan's "belly button"
By Hiroyuki Muramoto - SHIBUKAWA, Japan - It was belly-up for thousands of people who indulged in a weekend of navel gazing at a festival dedicated to the belly button in central Japan.
Children and adults, many of them sporting painted stomachs, took part at the annual Belly Button Festival in Shibukawa, north of Tokyo, where dancing in the streets is compulsory.
"The belly button is traditionally believed to be located in the middle of the body and the most important part. Our town, Shibukawa, is also called the belly button of Japan, and that is how this festival began," said festival organizer Kazuo Yamada...
Japan's parents party to marry off stay-at-home kids
By Mari Saito - TOKYO - The Japanese are true hands-on parents, helping their children with everything from university entrance exams to finding a job. Now, they're playing matchmakers, and on a nationwide level.
Japanese traditionally house and support their children until marriage, which has usually occurred at a younger age than now.
But as the kids stay at home longer due to job uncertainty and an unwillingness to compromise, panicked parents are flocking to mass matchmaking events at hotels and conference centers...
Sloth and inertia brought on by the hot weather, I guess.