Recent Posts

February 13, 2018

Awkward English Teacher Interviews in Japan

Some of the questions future ALTs were expected to answer range from the unconventional to the downright bizarre!

February 6, 2018

Cold Comforts: From OTC Japanese Drugs to Home Remedies for Flu Season

Over the years in Japan, I have discovered a range of both folk and modern remedies here to keep colds in check.

Shibuya Crossing
January 23, 2018

Location Situation: Can an English Teacher Afford to Live in Tokyo?

There is a continual debate over what locations in Japan offer English teachers the best earnings versus savings potential so we break down some facts and figures to come up with our No. 1 choice.

January 17, 2018

The Smartest Answer Isn’t Always the Best One: 5 Tips for ALT Interviews

It’s that time again for English teachers in Japan: meeting with new companies, schools and boards of education to secure a new contract. These five tips can help.

December 21, 2017

A Foreigner’s Guide to Marriage in Japan

So, you’ve met the man or woman of your dreams and the two finally decided to make it official. Here’s a quick how-to for the paperwork and procedures needed to ensure love will indeed prevail in Japan.

December 13, 2017

Decoding the Kanji of the Year: What it Is, What it Represents

One of the truly beautiful of Japanese lies in its use of — and societal connection to — the written word.

December 5, 2017

Namahage: Japan’s Baby-Scaring, Woman-Stealing Holiday Tradition

He and his fellow oni (demons) visit the homes of children across the city every New Year’s Eve, warning children of the dangers of behaving badly or disobeying their parents.

November 29, 2017

Taking the Scenic Route: Osaka to Tokyo by Local Train

A couple of hours a day on the train, with time off to take in some of the best sights Japan has to offer along the route.

November 21, 2017

A Kansai Christmas: Things to See and Do this Winter

There’s something about the uniquely Japanese way in which Christmas is celebrated here that always brings a smile to my face. Illuminations are no different.

November 14, 2017

Your Level Best: What Year of English Study Should You Be Teaching in Japan?

What kind of English teacher are you at the core and what school grade matches your style?

November 1, 2017

What’s Up with School Culture Festivals in Japan?

It’s a culture festival, but in another very real way, it’s also the blood, sweat and tears of your students… It’s bunkasai!

October 27, 2017

Nightmare on the Dotonbori: Top Halloween Spots in Kansai

Here are five spooktastic spots for to get your monster mash on this Halloween in Osaka.

October 24, 2017

5 Japanese Horror Movies You Must Watch, Part 2

When it comes to unsettling, chilling and often gruesome films, nothing quite matches the visceral nature of Japanese horror.

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