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Cynthia Popper

Writer/model/actor by day, English teacher by night. When she’s not stalking beauty trends or giving model advice on her blog, she can usually be found in the Shimokita thrift shops or eating more than a reasonable amount of green tea Galbo minis.



Behind the Wheel: Ceramics Classes in Minato-ku

GP Contributor Cynthia Popper gets down and dirty with a fun pottery class in Minato-ku.

By 2 min read 6


Unmasking Meds: Allergies in Japan

Spring in Japan means allergies. Here's a quick look at some of the common allergy medication that is available either by prescription or over the counter.

By 3 min read 8


Online Shopping in Japan: The Pre-Paid Card Primer

Pre-paid credit cards are available at all konbini stores but how easy are they to use for the non-Japanese speaker? We take a look at some of the most popular cards for shopping online.

By 3 min read 49


Andy Warhol Exhibit at the Mori Art Museum

When you hear the name Andy Warhol, you can’t help but immediately visualize his work and the iconic names indelibly attached: Jackie. Marilyn. Elvis. Campbell’s. His work collectively is a well-worn print in the fabric of the American art scene, so ubiquitous that it’s become almost invisible.

By 2 min read 1


How to Deal with Losing a Loved One Back Home

A few weeks ago, my mom died in California. I was teaching in Saitama when I got the news, and it was by far the most shocking thing that’s ever happened to me. Here are some thoughts about coping with loss in Japan, and what I’m doing to get through it.

By 2 min read 2


Ticking Clocks and Green Zebra Pants: Online Dating in Japan

Meeting people anywhere can be tricky business, but for foreigners in Japan, it can be crazy tough.

By 5 min read 1


Do you have any edamame gyuunyuu?

Here's a short list of useful terms to know when you visit a Japanese grocery store for the first time.

By 3 min read 7


Newcomer Checklist: Emergency Kit Basics

Living in Japan means living on a geological Tilt-a-World, so being prepared for shutdowns makes a whole lot of sense.

By 1 min read 4


Lovely for a Little While: Ikebana in Aoyama

Simple, vibrant, lovely. Ikebana is the Japanese art of flower arranging. The practice relies on the concepts of negative space and harmony to create a small and fleeting representation of the universe.

By 2 min read


The Pros and Cons of Private English Lessons

Teaching private English lessons is a good way to supplement your regular income but there are some pros and cons to going freelance. Being a successful freelance means being consistent and prepared. It doesn’t take much effort to make a great impression, so take the extra time and do it right!

By 6 min read 4


Un-Remembering Home: Reverse Culture Shock

Going home for the first time after an extended time away can be a fun but weird experience. Reverse culture shock isn’t about a new cultural experience, but rather it’s about remembering the things that you’ve forgotten.

By 3 min read 1


Moving to Japan: The Packing List Challenge

This time of year, soon-to-be teachers are gearing up for the big move to Japan. The interviews are done, contracts have been signed, and you’re starting to prepare for a major change in your life. It’s exciting and stressful.

By 2 min read 5