New Nihonjin? App Identifies Japanese Faces

If you’re a Japanese person (that is, real Japanese, not just like some Korean guy born in Japan), then you know how frustrating it is. Every day, you’re surrounded by crowds of people, in stores, elevators, and that small ramen shack behind the station. And everywhere you go, with every person you see, you have to constantly wonder “Is that person really Japanese?” Because, let’s face it—sometimes it’s hard to tell, even for you. And you’re, you know, Japanese.

Wouldn’t it be great if there were a surefire way to quickly tell whether someone was Japanese, Chinese, Korean, gaijin, or one of those “half” people? Well, now there is! Introducing… Continue reading “New Nihonjin? App Identifies Japanese Faces”

Hiking Japan : A Survival Guide

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve loved the outdoors—-exploring peaceful forest trails, sleeping under the stars, making fire from sticks. Plus the fact that you can pee basically anywhere. I conquer you, Nature. Take that.

So when I moved to Japan, the first thing I did was to look for some good hiking trails. Well, I mean, after finding a decent bar with some hot chicks, but hiking was pretty high on the list too. And eventually, I got around to some outdoorsy stuff, until one day, while following a deer path through a stand of trees, I had an epiphany. That’s when you realize stuff that’s incredibly obvious only you haven’t thought of it yet. Anyway, the epiphany said: Ken Seeroi, these two activities don’t have to be separate. Because Japan. Okay, Let me explain. Or as we say in Japanese, esprain. Continue reading “Hiking Japan : A Survival Guide”

Rice. You’re Doing it Wrong

How to Make Rice, in 7 Perfect Steps

I’ve probably made rice a thousand times, maybe more. But most were before I moved into a house with a bunch of Japanese roommates and got my ass handed to me. That’s a very humbling experience, let me tell you. Like, here’s your ass. Thanks, been looking for that.

Ah, dinnertime in the kitchen. Such a happy time. Everyone chopping vegetables, boiling noodles, and filling the room with the fragrance of burning fish. That acts as Japanese Fabreeze for your clothes and hair.

I measured out some rice and water, and put it in a pot on the stove.

“Just like a gaijin,” scoffed one of my housemates, busily stirring a non-stick pan with a metal fork. Continue reading “Rice. You’re Doing it Wrong”

Dating Japanese Women, Explained

When Jasmine over at Zooming Japan asked me to write about dating Japanese women, my first thought was, “Ain’t no way Ken Seeroi’s touching that one.”

In case you haven’t noticed, people are majorly opinionated about Their Japan. And not just Japanese folks either; I mean foreigners. Like if I said, “Japanese architecture is stunning,” somebody’d stand up and complain that the cities are just jumbled amalgamations of aging concrete projects. Alllll righty. Then how about “Japan’s got some ugly-ass cities”? Oh now somebody else starts rambling about traditional homes being all infused with zen beauty, and rock gardens, and koi fish. So yeah, everybody’s got an opinion. Welcome to the internet.

And that’s just architecture. So talk about Japanese women? Can’t I just give my thoughts on gun control, the Iraq war, and religion? Cause those’d be less controversial. Continue reading “Dating Japanese Women, Explained”

Who Wears the Pants in Japan?

“Ken? Ken! Wake the hell up! Meet me at the station.”

I sat up in bed, and realized it was not my bed. Words like this are why Ken Seeroi does not answer his iPhone after 11 p.m. The dreaded Yoko was on the line, and I was in her bed. Well, at least she had a bed, and not a horrible futon like I do. Either way, I really gotta remember to turn off that ringer.

“Ah baby, I’m kind of asleep,” I mumbled, “and it’s pouring down rain.”

“I forgot my umbrella,” she said. “Bring me one.”

“Yeah, just stop at 7-11. They’re like five bucks.”

“Never mind,” she said. “I’ll just get wet. Forget I asked you. Don’t worry about me.”

I could see where this was going, so I tried to use my sweet voice. Continue reading “Who Wears the Pants in Japan?”