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Allen Jay
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I remember a while back when I told a Japanese teacher of mine who lived in Nagoya that I might visit the city while I was in Japan. She looked at me blankly and asked, "Why?"

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As someone who lives in a state in the United States where all public smoking is forbidden by law, I’m still taken aback when I walk into certain Japanese restaurants and kissaten (coffee bars) and am hit with a wave of cigarette smoke. After a couple of…

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It’s hard to describe what a Japanese izakaya (居酒屋) is, because no direct analogy to American culture holds up well.  They’re closer to what we would call “tapas” in the US, though not as overpriced. They’re a bit like the American bar or the English pub,…

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This is my second food post in a row, which may lead my readers (all two of you) to worry that this blog has become Japan, Translated with Anthony Bourdain. Fear not – I’m still gung-ho about many other, un-food-related topics. But food is terribly…

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Headed to Japan? If so, stuff a bunch of potato chips in your luggage and prepare to score a sweet price on the black market, because the little deep-fried bastards are quickly disappearing from local retailer’s shelves. Being an island nation, Japan…

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  When I first started dating my wife, she lived in Tokyo, and I resided in Seattle. One day, I wanted to send her a gift, so I placed an order with Amazon Japan. I was shocked when I realized the package was delivered that same day! In America, that kind…

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