All posts by Bone

Lying to Survive

Monkeys “I never saw it, it wasn’t me!” These are often words uttered by children in the face of being caught doing something that they shouldn’t be doing. This is commonly known in the West as lying, and something that should have been beaten out of us by the time we leave primary school. Likewise, if you saw someone else committing the crime, it is the proper and “right” thing to do to tell the truth of what you saw. At no stage is your position in this transaction question, as you would be doing the right thing.
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Book Review: “Mao – The Unknown Story”

“Mao- The Unknown Story” (Click here to view the book on

We should be glad that the Chinese funded communist movements in Japan never gained momentum.

This book by Jung Chang (also know for Wild Swans), is apparently the first time anyone has taken a really deep look into Mao Tse-tung’s reign over China, from the inside, and published such a whopper of a biography.

The Daily Mail said “Few books are destined to change history, but this one will”.

I had never read a book on Chinese history that said anything like this. High-school history class told me that The Cultural Revlution took China from being a backward barbaric country, to a civilised modern country. Ms. Burrows neglected to mention the immense human carnage, and the fact that this was a small part of a much larger plan by one man to in fact take over the entire world, including Japan. Continue reading Book Review: “Mao – The Unknown Story”

Enough for breakfast?

Japanese Frosties..hmmOne of the cultural differences I have never been able to overcome in all my time in Japan, is that of eating a Japanese style breakfast, ie fish, rice and miso soup. Lunch or dinner, no problem, but not breakfast. This leaves me with two options, go without, or look for toast or cereal or something more agreeable to my stomach.

We often discuss amongst ourselves how Japan’s reputation of being such an expensive country to live, is possibly not so true any more. The two reasons for this are that prices overseas have been steadily increasing, whereas in Japan they have been stagnant for over a decade. The other reason is that if you are eating and living an ex-pat lifestlye (as we suspect the people doing the ratings do), then living is expensive. You still have to pay extra for larger apartments (with gaijin height kitchen benches), steak dinners, and yes, western breakfast cereals! Continue reading Enough for breakfast?