July 1, 2010
Fair, Balanced and Factless
By: David Chester | Jul 1, 2010 | Issue: 849 | No Comments | 2,311 views

Illustrations by Jacqueline M. Joseph


Newly installed Prime Minister Naoto Kan, troubled by falling approval ratings over his proposed tax increases, has been in negotiations with Suntory to promote his own brand of canned coffee. Each can of Kan Coffee will have the PM’s image emblazoned beneath the tagline “Higher Taxes = Higher Quality.”

According to a Suntory executive familiar with the project, the drink will have a sort of “mocha-milquetoast” flavor. After the executive was handed an envelope stuffed with ¥10,000 notes, he added that it will also contain a “secret ingredient” which “virtually guarantees that everyone will be happier after drinking it.”


A new health ministry survey has revealed that the majority of married Japanese couples are no longer satisfied with just having separate bedrooms—they’ve decided to live in separate buildings as well.

“It’s like in America, with the whole Red State-Blue State thing,” said Junko “Junkie” Yamada, a 32-year-old Chiba housewife who recently set up her own apartment miles from her spouse’s residence. “We wives basically don’t like our husbands, and they don’t like us.”

Although separate living arrangements can bring financial hardship, the survey reveals that couples are, indeed, happier. “I work 18 hours a day,” Bakahito Baba, a 34-year-old Saitama salaryman, told The Negi. “The last thing I need is some woman yelling at me to help with the housework and play with the kid. Besides, now I can sleep with my Chinese girlfriend whenever I damn well feel like it!”

Despite widespread agreement that betsu-betsu is best, the ministry suggests that couples still schedule copulation sessions at least once a year to avoid any further decrease in the country’s population.


In response to a dramatic rise in fatal accidents involving pedestrians hit by cars while reading text messages from their paramours, NTT and Softbank have joined forces to produce stylish headgear that can detect not only oncoming cars, but buildings and mama-chari as well.

“We saw a fantastic opportunity to make huge profits, and we jumped right in,” a Softbank spokesperson told The Negi. “We’ve never seen products move this fast.”

The feather-light headgear comes in a rainbow of colors to match the wearer’s keitai. An embedded sensor alerts the fixated text reader that something is coming their way—and from exactly which direction.

“This is sugoi,” said Rick Richards and his wife, Rieko, as they kept their eyes glued to their keitai screens. “We never have to have our concentration broken again because some dumb taxi can’t just go around us.”


Not content with applying false eyelashes and lip plumpers as they ride the subway, smart Tokyo OLs have taken to carrying portable lavatories. Replete with lighted mirror, hot curling iron, slant-tip tweezers and pink powder puffs, the PoTo can easily be secured to support poles or dangled from handstraps.

And PoTo isn’t only for the ladies. The PoTo-Mini helps guys maintain their “pretty, manly” looks with nose hair clippers, moisturizer, brow comb, oil-removing tissues and a manicure kit.

Thanks to brisk sales of the two products, manufacturer Showa Shower Co. recently announced new features, like waterless showers and a portable bidet. “Let’s face it,” said a Showa Shower sales rep, “if you’re going to be stuck on a train for two hours, why not take advantage of it?”

Special Lifestyle Focus! THE RAT GIRL OF ROPPONGI

Move over, Hello Kitty—you’ve got some competition as Japan’s most kawaii mascot.

It all started last month when Yasui Yamada, a hostess at Roppongi’s renowned Club Dick, saw a little brown rat bravely hauling chunks of Chicken McNuggets across the subway tracks—only to narrowly escape being mowed down by a train.

Moved by the rodent’s willingness to risk everything for a toxic piece of chicken, Yamada quit her job and now spends her nights hunkered down on the subway platform, tossing tidbits of Soyjoy bars onto the tracks. Although it took weeks for “Nezumi-chan,” as Yasui has named the cute critter, to take the food, he now boldly approaches her—along with 50 of his relatives—for each choice morsel.

Seeking financial assistance to upgrade Nezumi-chan’s squalid living conditions, Yasui has designed a cartoon mascot with its own website, Twitter account and Facebook page—all of which have received nonstop hits and garnered a steady stream of donations.

Asked how long she planned to do this, the ex-hostess said, “As long as the money keeps coming in. This is the best gig I’ve had in years!”

News in Brief

  • Government grants foreigners the right to vote—but only pretty foreigners
  • Obatarian achieves lifelong dream of becoming yokozuna
  • Tarento fired for saying “Oishiku nai!” on top-rated cooking show



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