Bradcat’s Japanese Word of the Week… Tanoshī

Bradcat’s Japanese phrase/word of the week is “Tanoshī” (楽しい) “Tan-oh-shii” which means “Fun”

So let’s imagine if you were trapped in a zombie apocalypse and a Japanese person asked what it was like to slay a horde of zombies using an electric guitar, you could say:

Tanoshikatta!” which means “It was fun!”

Bradcat’s Japanese Culture Focus… Fast Food

In the UK we’re no strangers to the world of fast food with “Drive-thru” restaurants popping up on practically every corner, and the government constantly trying to push healthy school meals. Not to mention we were statistically the 5th “fattest” county in Europe in 2013. While our meal sizes are smaller in comparison to countries like America (Their small McDonalds meals are equal to our large ones) that doesn’t stop us from indulging ourselves once in a while. 

“Would you like a side of fries with that?”
“Would you like to upgrade to a larger side order?”
“Did you know you can go large for just 30p?”

These are standard questions at any fast food restaurant these days. But what would you say, if your server asked if you’d “like a stone of fries with that?” You’d probably look at them as if they were insane.

Not in Japan…

In Japan, McDonald’s ran a special promotion for a short period of time where you could buy a large portion of fries for just  ¥150 yen (that’s roughly 90p) and kids went crazy for it. Some groups of kids hosted their own “potato parties” spending ¥5500 (£35) on mountains of fries like in the photo above. According to the Twitter commentary which went with the photos, all the fries were consumed. 

More recently Burger King have announced their BiKing promotion. Their play on words is meant to be synonymous with “Viking” with Japanese people obviously pronouncing their V’s as B’s. In this promotion the company are offering all you can eat Whopper burgers. All you have to do is consume your burger, go back to the counter with your empty wrapper, and they’ll give you a new one! Obviously there are rules to stop cheaters. You’re not allowed to palm the Whoppers into your bag, or have your friend help you eat, anyone caught doing this will be refused service. Oh, there is also a 30 minute time limit, so think again if you planned on eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the BK lounge.

On a slightly more serious note, Japan is the world’s second biggest economy but it struggles to produce enough food. The government says only 39% of the food the Japanese need is grown in Japan. In contrast Britain produces 70% of the food its population needs and France more than 120%. With over 128 million people in Japan, it ranks 124th in the world in terms of food security, and as the global population continues to grow there is more competition for resources. Which begs the question, are these over the top promotions wise?

What’s the craziest fast food you’ve experienced? Let me know in the comments below!

Bradcat’s J-Music Focus… Sugar’n’Spice

As most of you know by now, I’m a huge fan of the band Scandal. They played a big part in my love for discovering new Japanese music to listen to. One day whilst browsing YouTube for Japanese bands, one particular video caught my attention called “Hybrid Age”. The reason it caught my eye is because my username on YouTube is Hybrid3415 (Don’t ask, it’s a username I’ve used since I was 15) So I gave it a listen…

Who was this bad ass of a front woman, accompanied by a cute punky drummer and attitude fuelled crunching indie guitar tones? It was of course Sugar’n’Spice. I loved the track so much, I had it on repeat for over an hour. I followed the links via their description and shortly downloaded the album also entitled “The Hybrid Age” from iTunes. I soon came to love their other tracks, with one of my other favourites being “Queen Kate”, a song in which lead singer Kyao, daydreams of visiting London and hanging out with one of her idols; Kate Moss. The track has a very rough British punk, Libertines-esque, vibe to it.

Since discovering the band, I’ve tried to share them with my friends via Twitter and Facebook. I recently tried my hand at DJing at a local rock night, where I was able to throw in a few tracks by Sugar’n’Spice too. As Kyao manages most of the social media aspects of the band, we have had a few interactions, the same goes for the other members Tsue (guitar) and Mie (drums) …

A quick Tweet to Mie chan for her birthday…
And a question to Tsue about her incredible appetite…

Kyao was even kind enough to help me surprise one of my best friends for his birthday! Since hearing Hybrid Age, my friend Bob has enjoyed the band as much as I have. I asked Kyao via Twitter if she wouldn’t mind getting the band to sign a CD and send it over to me for his birthday. How cool is that?!

The girls hosted a LIVE web chat before one of their shows recently. I messaged them to let them know that I would see them one day…

If your Japanese is like mine isn’t that strong, Kyao says; “A guy from England is watching this too! He will visit Japan one day and come to our show, coming from across the sea. Thank you so much!” (Thanks to my friend Mami chan for the translation)

It’s really great to see an upcoming band that has such great interaction with their fans. I really look forward to seeing what the girls produce next with their new addition of Okumurakana on bass guitar, and hopefully seeing them play live one day.

Sugar’n’Spice… Ganbatte ne!


There are links scattered throughout this blog post linking to the band’s Twitter profiles and YouTube accounts, for more information check out the following links: