Gil Asakawa's Nikkei View | tokyo
84
archive,tag,tag-tokyo,tag-84,qode-quick-links-1.0,ajax_fade,page_not_loaded,,qode-title-hidden,qode-theme-ver-11.0,qode-theme-bridge,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-5.1.1,vc_responsive

United flight 139 from Denver International Airport to Tokyo's Narita Airport flies direct daily, and shaves off hours of travel time and stress from flying to the west coast for a connecting flight to Narita. Here's what I wrote when the direct flight on Boeing's 787 Dreamliner was first announced. Technical issues grounded the plane for several months from the original...

Here are complete day-by-day photo albums of our trip to Japan on Facebook (you don't need a Facebook account to see them, but you'll need to log in to Facebook to share or post a comment). Many of the photos (like the food shots, for instance) will be included in individual blog posts. DAY 1 - Flight to Japan, arrive in...

I recently returned from a fantastic trip to Japan, with my wife Erin Yoshimura and my mom. We flew first to Sapporo in the northern island of Hokkaido, where one of my uncles lives, and then traveled to Nemuro, my mom's hometown on the easternmost tip of Hokkaido, where another uncle lives. Then we flew down to Tokyo for a...

Graphic from the Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun, showing how the victim was forced off her motorbike by a rope strung across the road. I should just shake my head and mutter, "Kids these days, what were they thinking." But I have deeper feelings than that, and I'm terribly saddened by the ongoing news coverage out of Japan, where four teen-aged dependents of U.S. military personnel were arrested over the weekend for attempted murder. The three boys and a girl, aged 15 to 18, are charged with an August attack in Tokyo, when a woman was knocked off her motorbike when she ran into a rope that had been tied across the road, and fractured her skull and broke her neck, leaving her hospitalized for three months. The rope was moved from its position across the driveway entrance to a business, and re-tied to a post across the road. The graphic above from the Yomiuri Shimbun, one of Japan's huge national daily newspapers, illustrates what happened. After the woman crashed, one of the assailants reportedly flagged down a passing motorist and asked the person to call for an ambulance, then the attackers fled the scene.Police questioned the teens after viewing footage from a nearby security camera. The arrests came Saturday, aftr negotiating with U.S. officials. Two of the teens live on Yokota Air Base, an American Air Force facility, close by in Tokyo; the other two live off-base with their families. This attack, or prank, or stupid act, whatever it turns out to be, if it was committed by teenagers, would make the news in the U.S., but it's especially grabbing attention in Japan because there's an ongoing debate within that country about the need for, and level of, U.S. military presence there.

Google ran into trouble in japan over the use of historical maps of Tokyo that showed areas where burakumin, or the lowest caste, used to live. Poor Google. They're in a tough spot this time. The Internet giant has hit some cultural snags in Japan before, over how it rolled out its products in the Land of the Rising Sun. This time, they're in trouble because Google used publicly available historical maps of Tokyo and Osaka in an overlay for its popular (and amazing) Google Earth program. The problem is, the maps showed the locations of former villages where the "burakumin" used to live in feudal times. The locations have long since been developed with the concrete, steel and glass of modern Tokyo, but the antique map has dredged up centuries and shame, and a fresh spate of anger from the descendants of burakumin as well as government officials who'd just as soon forget that such prejudice ever existed -- and apparently still exists.

I caught a cool video story today on NYT.com, about a Double Dutch competition held in Harlem. (You may have to do a search for it once you get to the NYT video page). Interestingly, the competitive African American tradition, which counts the number of times you can jump rope in two minutes and then add on layers of amazing acrobatic...

GodzillaI finally saw Peter Jackson's 2005 remake of "King Kong," and I'm afraid I was underwhelmed. It was corny, and overly long and not engaging, even when the excitement factor revved up for the final third of the film. It reminded me that although Hollywood has been making monster movies since the original 1933 "King Kong," the monster with the most staying power and screen incarnations -- over two dozen movies -- didn't come out of California, but from Tokyo.