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Joe Biden's Straight Talk Express comes to Asia! WaPo Bureau Chief Michelle Ye Hee Lee joins us to talk about what Biden took away from his time in Japan. If he's anything like most Americans, we're betting that list includes a Hello Kitty T-shirt and a fake sword. Ferris Wheel and Kintsugi River boats! Topics discussed on this episode include: How…
 
Japan Scholar Oleg Benesch joins us to to talk about the past, present, and future of Japanese castles, and break down the debates around them, proving that when it comes to historical Japanese strongholds, things aren't always black and shiro. Bobby and Ollie mourn the loss of some of their river cruise sponsors, and play catch up. Topics discusse…
 
Author of Japan's Aging Peace, Tom Le, stops in to talk about Japan's security concerns and help us think about an important hypothetical question. Ok, Japan, you CAN have a military. NOW WHAT? Ollie's river cruise recommendation is actually in Ukraine this week, but don't worry, if you wait long enough, it'll come to you. Bobby learned a little bi…
 
Author Alex Kerr may be single-handedly responsible for the current global spotlight on restoring old Japanese country homes, so we talk to him about how these homes may be at the forefront of a new style of Japan tourism... if tourism in Japan ever happens again. Ollie shows us how YOU can go home again, as long as you do it by river cruise. Bobby…
 
If you'd like to be entered for a chance to win Baye McNeil's book "Hi, My Name is Loco and I'm a Racist," Ann Kilzer's 禁 calligraphy, or one of three JBRC merch packs, please tweet and share your favorite episode from this year with a recommendation, and be sure to tag us in it! Archive is here! Alternatively, you can also enter by retweeting your…
 
Author of the new book, "An Affair with a Village" and leading UK expert on Japan, Joy Hendry joins us to discuss a whole variety of things, like MEXT Scholarships, marriage, and other things that end up letting us down. Ollie gets Scandinavian with it. Bobby is surprised to find out there are as many as two. Topics discussed on this episode range …
 
Abe-ographer (The Iconoclast) Tobias Harris stops by to break down the power dynamics in the LDP, speculate on whether or not Kishida's going to get a belated honeymoon (and whether or not his wife will have to stand during it), and discuss why what kills US, makes Kishida stronger. Ollie does what we in the media do best: gives a platform to bigot…
 
Why do foreigners in Japan speak in Katakana? Well, Bobby does it because the TV director told him it's funnier that way. But Dr. Wes Robertson has actual NON-anecdotal research into writing system/pronoun choices and how calling yourself ORE isn't conveying what you think it is. Ollie reminds us that loose lips sink ships. Bobby comes to terms. To…
 
Thalia Harris stops by to talk about second-class citizenship in Japan during the pandemic, and also has such an interesting story about the Titanic that we had NO CHOICE but to actually talk about a cruise ship. Ollie recommends a ship that will have to change its name now. Bobby thinks Maezawa Yuusaku is wasting his money. Topics discussed on thi…
 
NYT Tokyo Bureau Chief Motoko Rich gets onboard to talk about Kishida's first month in office. What has he done so far? What does his administration mean for Japan? And the most important test of a Japanese government official: how well can the man mull? Ollie recommends a river cruise that succeeds, but at what cost? No cost. Bobby makes a point a…
 
Aya Shimada tells us what the fuss over Princess Mako's nuptials tells us about Japan's treatment of women, how the media affords privacy rights to the famous, and Ollie remembered that he thinks wedding stuff is over-priced again. Bobby knows which one of the two Rising Sun post-covid cruise options he wants to take. Topics discussed on this episo…
 
Business consultant Pernille Rudlin helps us look back on the largely disappointing post-Brexit trade deal between Japan and the UK, which may have only been signed because Japan is sympathetic when it comes to saving face. Ollie remembers that people used to be shorter. Bobby gets an exclusive Aso Taro hot take on the silver lining of the death of…
 
We're really sorry to say we were unable to get an episode to you this week, so enjoy these extras that were previously released only to our monthly members. Thank you sincerely to everybody who still supports this show by listening to the show each week, interacting with our nonsense on Twitter, and especially those who are kind enough to throw a …
 
Anne Crescini talks about how Japanese schools don't have the resources to properly combat bullying, because those resources get used on student hair color and fingernail length. Ollie FINALLY starts studying Japanese again. Wait, wow WAS Bobby looking at the Holocaust before? Topics discussed on this episode range from: Brian's Birthday The HELL t…
 
Syukuro Manabe and some other people win the Nobel Prize, illustrating a lot about how and why Japan claims people as Japanese. We talk to Mary Kobayashi about how she defines her Japanese identity, and how media representation works to define "Japanese..." as sexy, anime robot. The average age of Ollie's friends is getting lower. Bobby recycles. T…
 
Japan's likely new Prime Minister, Marc Matsumoto talks about how to wield Japanese recipes responsibly, and more. Ollie's doing another podcast's work for them. Bobby looks at the new, very strict, tourist entry dress code . Topics discussed on this episode range from: NO PRE-RECORDED MESSAGE FROM BRIAN A question that is decidedly outside of Marc…
 
Who will be Japan's next Prime Minister? Japanese Margaret Thatcher? The often shaken AND stirred Kono, TARO Kono? Mr. Speak-softly-and carry-no-nukes? Or Woman woman? Former Diet Aide Derek Wessman tells us "the thing" about each of the four candidates. Ollie's disappointed that the new boat doesn't work with the old charger. Bobby is tired of Jap…
 
Ollie's going to eat both of those pizzas by himself, but HEY, it's his birthday. Bobby looks at the river cruise unions ALLS-WELL-THAT-ENDS-WELL philosophy. Topics discussed on this episode range from: The "rulebook for integration" in Japan, and why it's never been properly translated. The actual rulebooks that are actually made in an attempt to …
 
Selena Hoy, outreach director from Suicide Prevention Lifeline, TELL, stops by to talk about the different cultural approaches to managing mental health, and why English-speakers in Japan can benefit from a service like TELL, in one of the rare episodes where we ask you to support something that ISN'T our riverboat. Ollie recommends a cruise that m…
 
Hiromu Nagahara talks about Princess Mako's engagement and upcoming move to New York and the split in Japanese public opinion, between nationalists, who are angry, and normal people, who don't care. Ollie pays close attention to the head chopping facilities list on this week's cruise recommendation. Bobby does NOT like that thing that you all like.…
 
An hour-long celebration of JBRC's 97th episode! We take a moment to catch up and make sure Ollie is actually surviving, roast some headlines, and have an extremely rare discussion about some things we love about life in Japan. Ollie recommends a river cruise that thinks you should quit nursing that beer, pussy. Bobby tells a group of people how th…
 
After the unprecedented rain and landslides in western Japan, disaster sociologist Dr. Wes Cheek talks about the country's future, and how facing the climate crisis may require never-before-seen levels of "shikata-ga-nai." Ollie recommends a climate change simulating cruise that is ALREADY behind the times. Bobby throws some classic comedic misdire…
 
Disability activist and historian Mark Bookman talks about how accessibility progress is bolstered by the international spotlight of the Paralympics but hampered by the lack of accessibility at the policy-making table. Ollie interrogates the patriarchy. Bobby seems pretty consumed by his anxiety about how much time we have left. Topics discussed on…
 
Japan Times Journalist Magdalena Osumi updates us on Japan's border entry sitch, and outlines Japan's new "vaccine passport" system, which could help lift some restrictions when entering certain countries (Not Japan, tho). Ollie is MIA and Bobby won't even watch the pirated stuff. Topics discussed on this episode range from: Brian's big debut What …
 
What's that awful groaning sound?? Nope, it's not us talking about the Olympics, it's Japanese horror! Lindsay Nelson tells us all about the world of scary Japanese movies, and seven days later, we die. Ollie recommends a battery powered river cruise that has run into a familiar problem. Bobby used to like that quote about how on a long enough time…
 
The Olympics have begun, but more importantly, the MEDIA COVERAGE OF THE OLYMPICS HAS BEGUN! Officially accredited press person Oscar Boyd tells us about all of the rules the press are ignoring, and why he's rooting for American Samoa. Ollie recommends an Amazon sponsored river cruise that helps teach you how to save the planet, while having one fo…
 
Japanese comedian Meshida talks what it's like to be a Japanese resident of Tokyo during the ramp up to the Olympics, and how yeah, we're "witnessing history," but so were Black Death survivors. Ollie recommends a cruise that accidentally discovers what's more popular than "canal." Bobby gets into the rainy season cruise spirit. Topics discussed on…
 
Dogen drops by to talk about keeping professional and personal separate, how to mine the same old Japan for new jokes, and to settle the issue of whether or not sarcasm exists in Japan, which is great, because NO ONE ELSE has EVER had ANYTHING to say about it. Ollie recommends a River Cruise that teaches the traditional Japanese custom of "commerci…
 
Unseen Japan's new manager Noah Oskow stops by to talk social media social justice, how Summer Sonic's hopes to skip the visa application line up for THEIR lineup, and how Olympic Fever is on the rise, starting with the Ugandan Team... Ollie talks about the harder to get delicacies available aboard the Olympic Athlete's Dining Cruise. Bobby has new…
 
A 50-yr-old Japanese lawmaker says it would be "absurd" if he got arrested for sleeping with a 14-yr-old. The fascinating, funny Dr. Alexandra Hambleton talks about the issues surrounding this story, and also demonstrates how to deny consent when she refuses to let us scan her zairyuu card. Ollie continues to be British. Bobby continues to think wa…
 
Japan's closed borders mean that foreign production crews can't get in to produce Japan travel features, so creator Alisha Ivelich is taking the opportunity to fill the demand with a Japan travel series that actually cares about Japan. Ollie recommends a privacy-focused cruise that, due to the ToS, we are not allowed to tell you about. Bobby looks …
 
Sarah Moon, anime and game translator, talks about her journey from "weeb suspicious of translation," to "translator that weebs are suspicious of," in the great anime circle of waifu. Ollie recommends a cruise for animal lovers but not loved animals. Bobby looks at how one river cruise company is leveraging the power and lack of power of petitions.…
 
Go sign the petition! And here's your eco/anti-olympic activism vocab list: 剪定 (せんてい、sentei) pruning of trees 伐採 (ばっさい、bassai) felling of trees 請願書 (せいがんしょ、seigansho) petition 署名者 (しょうめいしゃ、shoumeisha) signers of a petition ★ Support this podcast ★By Bobby Judo and Ollie Horn
 
Author of "Regimes of Desire: Young Gay Men, Media, and Masculinity in Tokyo," Dr. Thomas Baudinette talks about Japan's young gay men and the emotional damage done by the pressure to act out their gayness in an unfortunate way, namely emulating straight dudes. Ollie's recommendation is pretty worthless this week, because there's NO WAY you don't a…
 
Author of "PURE INVENTION," (sorry) Matt Alt takes us through his latest for the New Yorker on "Japan's Olympic Sized Problem." If you want to find out just WHAT exactly that Olympic-sized problem is, you'll have to listen to the show. Ollie recommends a cruise that features a very traditional brand of online-connectivity. Bobby seeks adventure on …
 
Japanese history scholar Chelsea Szendi Schieder talks about the inconsistent ways Japan chooses to deal with the dark chapters of its past and how denial is NOT just a river with some amazing cruises. Ollie looks into how the Sumidagawa River Cruise is finally adapting to foreign widths. Bobby makes a joke that hinges on ignoring the difference be…
 
Music industry and Visual Kei Insider Sarahphina teaches Bobby and Ollie about stuff they're totally unfamiliar with, like X Japan, Japanese rock fandom and humility. Ollie looks into a river cruise dating service for vaccinated singles. All ten of them. Bobby organizes the kind of tourist activities HE wants the foreign Olympic athletes to experie…
 
Co-founder of Tanuki Games, Stephen Case talks about the relationship between community building and quality of life abroad and how the rhythms of Japan expat experience have changed during the past year. (They're f***ed.) Ollie recommends a river cruise that's partnered with Elon Musk, so you know it's got its priorities in line. Bobby does a quic…
 
Sustainable travel consultant JJ Walsh (and everyone else in Hiroshima) gets a free PCR test! Here's hoping this saliva-filled undertaking amounts to more than just spitting into the wind. Ollie recommends our first ever Fukushima based river cruise, with some pretty interesting side effects. Bobby recommends a Ramadan cruise that should make thing…
 
Jason Mitchell, from Nihongodomo, a resource for parents "raising kids in Japanese," stops by to talk about how his parenting process is basically the opposite of Bobby's, by which we assume he means, HE'S doing a GOOD job. Ollie makes the most of an online resource to gather river cruise recommendations, while he still can. Bobby is on the worst t…
 
David McNeill explains why sometimes the ancient art of jya-narizamu intersects with the even more ancient art of bullshitto, and how exoticizing foreign countries meant the British newspaper industry died a little slower than it could have done. Ollie recommends a cruise that maritime insurers hate. Bobby explores which Covid variants will form pa…
 
Rochelle Kopp tackles the question of whether or not Japan has finally crossed the Rubicon when it comes to going forward with the Olympics? If they have, we hope they checked out the really nice Rubicon River Cruise while they were in the area. Ollie takes a river cruise that lets you play the second most dangerous game. Bobby withdraws his name f…
 
Former-idol, former-hostess, and current maid Alice talks about how the pandemic has devastated nightlife businesses, and how the fact that that they might never bounce back could be a blessing in disguise, if the disguise is a really sparkly cocktail dress. (We’re assuming that you know "idol," "hostess," and "maid" are words we are using in Engli…
 
Long time editor of "Fukuoka Now" Nick Szasz brings his inbound expertise to bear on the proliferation of virtual tourism in Japan, a trend in which regional tourist destinations all over Japan try to learn how to use the internet. Ollie recommends a cruise that's currently booking for next year, which is still gonna be too early. Bobby has a new r…
 
Bloomberg Journalist Marika Katanuma joins us to discuss the ways in which Japan's gender inequality has created a bleak financial outlook for Japan's women, and the government's quick and decisive action to talk about thinking about what to do. Ollie recommends a river cruise that, seriously, you guys, he was only on for the purposes of the review…
 
Pro-cosplayers Kat Gunn and Reika talk to us about Japan's recent attention to the rules around copyrighted character cosplay. We'll look at why cosplay is okay if you're only fans, but not okay if you're ON OnlyFans. Ollie recommends a boba boat. Bobby tries out a sink or swim fitness regimen. Topics discussed on this episode range from: A law fir…
 
Attn: Non-Japanese employees in Japan who are likely to be fired! Atsuro Tsujino, member of the Japan Lawyers Network for Foreigners tells us how two wrongs might not make a right, but YOUR rights might make your termination wrongful. Everything you need to know about your rights under Japanese law, and what to do if you find yourself the victim of…
 
Bloomberg journalist Stephen Stapczynksi talks about Japan's renewable energy goals, its nuclear power plants, and its dependence on fossil fuels. Oh and speaking of wastes of energy, Tokyo Olympics chief Mori comes up too. Ollie gets into the renewable spirit of the show by recycling the contents of THIS EPISODE into this week's river cruise recom…
 
Co-host of "The Konnichiwa Podcast" Dan Yoder trades tips with Bobby on how to raise the perfect multicultural, well-rounded, native-level bilingual children in an episode that might AGE HORRIBLY. Listen now, then check back in 10-15 years to find out. Ollie recommends a river cruise that maybe should have been included on our vaccine ep with Lisa …
 
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