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October 14

“When comics and catwalks collide”

Filed under: pop culture,Superheroes,Treats — posted by Breakup Girl @ 11:09 am

The New York Times reports today on the ladyfashions that lit up the most recent ComicCon: “Visitors were garbed as their favorite cartoon heroines, an outlandish cast of characters that varied from Wonder Woman to the violet-haired Faye of ‘Cowboy Bebop,’ the Japanese manga and anime series, to pink crinoline-clad Lolitas that were candy-coated variations on the brooding goth originals who strut their style on Tokyo’s streets.” The whole piece is not only great fun, but also a major Halloween costume idea delivery system. The only thing that bummed me out (not the article’s fault): the frequent descriptions of Wonder Woman’s costume as inspiration. The old Wonder Woman. Le sigh.

Related: Chris on Superheroes: Fashion and Fantasy at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.


October 7

Charisma Man

Filed under: pop culture,Treats — posted by Breakup Girl @ 12:03 pm

Charles Atlas meets the 97-pound weakling meets that guy who’s so handsome he never really had to develop a personality meets … well, many, many women in Japan. It’s Charisma Man! I’m pretty sure the images of  Japanese culture are reductive, if not offensive, but (as you’ll see) the underlying notion that the same person can be different people to different people — follow me? — is spot on. What do you think?

H/t @JaneMinty.


May 13

Hope chest

Filed under: Treats — posted by Breakup Girl @ 12:01 pm

Japan’s latest novelty bra (yes, there’s more than one): the Marriage Hunting Bra.

Made by Triumph International, the hardly-intimate apparel features a pen for signing marriage contracts,  a ring receptacle that plays “The Wedding March” when filled, and a timer that appears thematically relevant but whose actual purpose remains unclear.

Perhaps it’s performance art wrapped in a public service announcement inside a wardrobe malfunction. As Reuters notes: “Japan’s marriage rate is falling and the average age at which women get married is over 28 years, relatively late for a country in which single females were once considered over the hill at 25.”


November 17

Lookin’ for love in all the Roppongi places

Filed under: News — posted by Rose @ 11:40 am

Last week was a bad one for certain Japanese women and the men who love to buy them drinks. Two stories described the downmarket vibe in Tokyo’s Roppongi Hills* (it’s always the “Hills“) section, a new-money, work/play development where local gals could heretofore count on snagging a Western banker for the night, if not a lifetime. But thanks to the death/ailing of Lehman Brothers and Goldman Sachs, two firms that kept offices there, the Roppongi meat market has become a bear market.

“The well-rehearsed choreography of girls coming in from the suburbs in their finery, tasting the good life, then snagging an investment banker to prolong the party is yesterday’s dance,” death-knells the London Times, which narrowed in on one particular bar whose website copy serves up such irony-tinis as “I will not chase after the fickleness of time” and “I will not be captured by the sense of values that bind my thoughts.”



May 15

Calling in heartsick

Filed under: News — posted by Maria @ 5:06 am

Show of hands. How many of us have not called in sick to work after a breakup? When you can’t even pick yourself up off the kitchen floor, how can you be expected to cowboy up in your cubicle?

So, FINALLY, someone has come to their senses and started offering “heartache leave.” (I know BG covered this in brief a ways back, but I’m still awash in admiration.) The Japanese PR firm Hime & Company (www.himeclub.com, for those of you who read Japanese), decided to start offering its employees this benefit because it found that those going through a breakup are often distracted at work, leading to costly mistakes and strange, distracting behavior.

The time for recovery is set by your age. Those in their early 20s only get one day off. (I guess on the assumption that people in their 20s get over heartache more quickly.) The mid-20s rank two days off; those 30 and over get a full three. I don’t know about you, but the last time I went through a breakup — and I fall into that last demographic — I needed about a week before I could sit at a desk without systematically snapping all my pencils in half.

Leave it to Japan — which can add this to its list of welcome innovations including smart cars, Hello Kitty, and raw fish — to understand the impact of heartache on the workplace.
I can’t even get my employer to recognize that my work suffers when I have the flu.


February 10

Heartache Leave!

Filed under: News — posted by Chris @ 9:17 pm

The country that brought us the Lovegety continues to be a relationship innovator:

TOKYO (Reuters) – Lovelorn staff at a Japanese marketing company can take paid time off after a bad break-up with a partner, with more “heartache leave” on offer as they get older.

Tokyo-based Hime & Company, which also gives staff paid time off to hit the shops during sales season, says heartache leave allows staff to cry themselves out and return to work refreshed. “Not everyone needs to take maternity leave but with heartbreak, everyone needs time off, just like when you get sick,” CEO Miki Hiradate, whose company of six women markets cosmetics and other goods targeted for women, told Reuters by telephone.

From yahoo news, via NowPublic


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