So appetizing, it would be a shame to eat! “Make you smile” bento (lunch box) design devised by elementary school students sells out during the morning
販売が始まった「食べるのもったいない!えみらる風弁当」 “So appetizing, it would be a shame to eat! Emiraru-style bento” is now on sale https://www.yomiuri.co.jp/economy/20210302-OYT1T50089/

Sixth graders at Tsujigaoka Elementary School in Nabari City, Mie Prefecture, started selling bento boxes (lunch boxes) themed “Despite Corona, the neighborhood smiles with spirit.” at the nearby Super Yaohiko Nabari store on the 1st. For a limited time of about one week, 10 to 15 meals a day are lined up at the store entrance.

The lunch box “So appetizing, it would be a shame to eat! Emiraru-style bento” was commercialized by a supermarket based on the ideas of sixth graders. The package is decorated with the local mascot “Emiraru” and is packed with broiled soybean paste, deep-fried tofu, and fried shrimp. The label was designed by children with a message of support also included. 429 yen (tax included).

This bento idea was implemented by the elementary school cooking class to give kids the opportunity to think independently about food and home economics for the Corona crisis. 110 sixth graders complemented the lunch box with illustrations etc. Three candidates were selected at a school assembly, and out of them, one plan was chosen and produced by the supermarket.

15 meals were sold on the first day. They sold out during the morning. “Nabari’s bento is full of food and color. It has a good balance of color and nutrition.” says the person in charge of the supermarket side dish department. All 110 bento ideas are also on display in the store.

ORIGINAL: https://www.yomiuri.co.jp/economy/20210302-OYT1T50089/
[One of my translated articles (for practice)]

長野県立美術館 開館前に内覧会

Private viewing of Nagano Prefectural Museum of Art before it’s grand opening

Before the Art Museum in Nagano City underwent reconstruction work and was renamed to the “Nagano Prefectural Museum of Art”, the inside of the museum was opened to the public and the press.

The Shinano Art Museum near Zenkoji Temple in Nagano City was closed in October 2017 due to various reasons including deterioration, and reconstruction work was set to begin.

The construction was completed and a private viewing was held on the 21st, before the grand opening on April 10th of this year.  The new building has 3 floors above ground and 1 floor below ground, and the total floor area is about 11,000 square meters, which is over three times larger than its prior size before the rebuilding.

It is designed to take advantage of the terrain with different heights so that it blends in with the surrounding landscape, and glass is often used for the outer walls.

Inside, there is a new restaurant where you can sit anywhere and eat while observing Zenkoji and a newly constructed library with a collection of art-related books. Also, with the exception of one exhibition, admission is free.

“I would like to see people come through the entrance carefree, and spending as much time as they want to. My intention and desire is to make this museum part of and to be used in our everyday lives.” says Director Toru Matsumoto.

[One of my translated articles (for practice)]

環境大臣賞に仁愛女子高・酒井さん トンボ絵画コン

Ms. Sakai of Jinai Girls’ High School, wins the Minister of the Environment Award dragonfly painting contest.
酒井佑理子さんの大賞・環境大臣賞受賞作「学校の帰り道、堤防で」 Yuriko Sakai’s winning work and winner of the Minister of the Environment Award Grand Prize: “On the embankment, on the way home from school.”

【福井】トンボや、トンボのいる風景を題材に自然の大切さを表現する第35回「WE LOVE トンボ」絵画コンクール(朝日新聞社・朝日学生新聞社主催、文部科学省・環境省など後援、トンボ協賛)の高校生の部で、仁愛女子2年の酒井佑理子さん(17)=福井市=の水彩画「学校の帰り道、堤防で」が最高賞の大賞・環境大臣賞を受賞した。
[Fukui] At the 35th WE LOVE DRAGONFLIES contest held in the high school, the theme is Dragonflies, and scenery with dragonflies in it, with significant emphasis on expressing nature. (sponsored by Asahi Shimbun, Asahi Student Newspaper, and the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, Ministry of the Environment, and dragonfly appreciated), Yuriko Sakai (17) = Fukui City = watercolor painting “On the way home from school, at the embankment” won the Minister of the Environment Award grand prize.

The competition has been held for children and students since 1986 to support the creation of the “Dragonfly Kingdom” in Shimanto City, Kochi Prefecture, and to spread the movement to protect dragonflies and nature nationwide. The highest awards were the Minister of the Environment Award and the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Award, and this time there were 107,376 entries from 4,471 schools.

The award-winning work shows countless dragonflies looking down on a girl in an evening embankment who has her index finger pointed up at them. “People always look up, but looking at it the other way around, I had fun painting and imagining.” says Sakai. The clarity of the pale white translucent dragonfly wings showing motion and the vegetation on the embankment gives it the feeling of an actual photograph so the painter actually appears to have studied the environment’s varied hues and shades. “But I wanted to express more illumination by the setting sun.” she said dissatisfied.

In junior high school, the brass band club. I used to draw pictures of my favorite anime and animals, but I didn’t start drawing in earnest until after I joined the high school art club. Now, I’m aiming to go on to art school, and I’m focusing on drawing through club activities three times a week.

When Ms. Sakai returns home from school, she often raises her finger to see if a dragonfly will stop. “They don’t always stop, but I like the time I spend thinking about it.” The award-winning work expresses my deep desire that dragonflies will always be flying in the embankment, “I will continue to draw naturally, keeping in mind the perspectives of animals, plants, and insects.” she says. (Kazuhiro Nakata)

SOURCE:(ORIGINAL BY 中田和宏 at 2020年12月22日 10時30分)
[One of my recently translated articles (for practice)]


In a VR game where you become an employee of “Ichiran”, can you follow the “15 second rule”?

2021年2月14日 23時37分
February 14, 2021 23:37

SOURCE: https://www.asahi.com/articles/photo/AS20210213001866.html?iref=pc_photo_gallery_prev

ラーメンチェーン「一蘭」が初監修したVR(仮想現実)ゲームが誕生した。「カウンターファイト 一蘭」で、VR用のヘッドセットを使って遊ぶ。
A VR (virtual reality) game supervised by the ramen chain “Ichiran” was born. Play with a VR headset in “Counter Fight Ichiran”.

Players experience what it’s like to be an employee. The noodles must be served within a set period of time to be considered delicious, and the “15-second rule” along with the elegance of how the food is arranged all determines how many points you earn.

According to a spokesman, the kitchen, while not normally open to the public, is reproduced fairly accurately. The game has attracted the attention of foreign fans, as well as inquiries from overseas media. 1480 yen. ($14.05)

SOURCE: https://www.asahi.com/articles/ASP2F73Q5P2FTIPE005.html
[One of my recently translated articles (for practice)]

Space Pirate Captain Harlock

One of my favorite anime series of all time is about a space pirate who fights for what he believes is right.  The series stars Captain Harlock and was first created by Leiji Matsumoto in 1977.   Then popularized in the 1978 television series: Space Pirate Captain Harlock.  The emotion and story found in this series is rarely seen in other anime these days.  The music is also well-thought-out and fits the story exceptionally well.  It truly is a masterpiece.
私が昔から好きなアニメシリーズの一つは、自分が正しいと信じていることを求めて戦う宇宙海賊の話です。  このシリーズはキャプテン・ハーロックの主演で、1977年に松本零士によって初めて創作されました。   そして、1978年のテレビシリーズ「宇宙海賊のキャプテン・ハーロック」で人気が出ました。  このシリーズで見られる感情や物語は、最近では他のアニメではほとんど見られません。  音楽もよく考えられ、ストーリーに非常によく合います。  まさに傑作です。

Probably my favorite song from the show is Albator (Mayu’s Theme) which is mostly played with an Ocarina.  I have an Ocarina myself and sometimes play this song:
この番組のなかで私のお気に入りの曲は、主にオカリナで演奏されるAlbator(Mayu’s Theme)でしょう。  私自身、オカリナを持っていて、時にはこの歌を奏でます。


飴細工 – あめざいく

Candy fashioned in human and animal forms.

Have you seen amezaiku?  It looks like glass artwork, but is actually candy.
飴細工を見たことがありますか。ガラス工芸品のように見えますが 実は飴です。

All kinds of creatures can be created, but I really like these round panels that look like glass pictures. These can display not just creatures, but various forms of scenery like water, wind, mountains, etc.  It’s much like a picture that can be hung on the wall, yet it’s candy! As you can see in the example, there’s even one with a dragonfly on it!


Anime: Bonobono

Have you watched the anime series Bonobono?  It’s one of my favorite shows.  Here is a description from their website:

2016年・春、連載30年というANNIVERSARY YEARに、新たなアニメがスタートしました。
ぼのぼのは土曜日 朝の顔として活躍中です!

ENG > A cartoon production series that first began in 1986, over 30 years ago.  From movies, to anime, to games, and various books, it still remains popular and loved among men and women of all ages.
In the spring of 2016, at the 30th anniversary after it’s original production, a new season for the anime started.
Bonobono is active and can be seen on Saturdays!

Every episode is only about 10 minutes long, and very funny.

In episode 51 “Chipmunk Hates Bugs”, chipmunk hears that his father is gravely ill, so he runs home in a panic.  However, as he recalls it, his father’s illness is not what made him upset;  Instead it was when he arrived and was looking inside his father’s house, and a dragonfly landed on his head. 😄

View the episode here:
Crunchyroll – Bonobono Episode 51 – Chipmunk hates bugs!

To learn more about Bonobono view the website below:


Hometown Rebuilding: Folktales from Japan

Have you ever watched this series?  Every episode contains 3 Japanese folktales in Anime form.  In episode 41, The Three Charms, Sweet Potato Millionaire, and The Geta(s) of Treasure are featured.   Each story is a real Japanese folktale passed down through the generations.  If you are interested in Japanese culture, I definitely recommend checking it out!




Have you seen Cat Japanese History?  While watching Anime, you are also learning a little bit of history!  Interesting isn’t it? (meow)