(via Mad Minerva)
Television has just become more evil.:
Sanrio, creator of Hello Kitty, has announced that The Cute One will soon be appearing in her own TV show with a number of her furry friends in more than 15 countries of Asia, Europe, and North America..
The name of the program is Hello Kitty, Stamp Village, a 26-part series about the adventures of Kitty and her companions in a forest.
In Japan, Reuters reports that the evil mouthless one from Sanrio is set to put receptionists out of a job.:
Need temporary help on your company’s reception desk? One Japanese employment agency is suggesting you try recruiting a robot.I
For just under 50,000 yen ($430) a month, a fraction of the cost of a human temp, the PeopleStaff agency will dispatch Hello Kitty Robo, a robotic receptionist capable of sensing a visitor’s presence, greeting him or her and holding simple conversations.
The Nagoya-based agency is also offering the services of Ifbot, an elderly-care robot that chats and poses riddles and arithmetical problems to train the brain and help avoid dementia. Spaceman-like Ifbot, which also quizzes people about their health, is aimed at hospitals and old peoples’ homes.
A spokeswoman for PeopleStaff said it would cost more than 300,000 yen a month to employ a person for this type of work, but warned that the robots were not capable of doing everything human employees can do.
(via Mad Minerva)
AsiaPundit just turned on CCTV 9 tonight and China’s international news station is running a documentary on crop circles. After establishing them as one of nature’s unsolved mysteries, the show has shifted to a review of M Night Shyamalan’s Signs. The show concludes "We are no nearer to solving this particular mystery."*
To its credit, CCTV noted the evil Kitty circle.:
*(Note, liveblogging CCTV causes poor grammar.)
The evil mouthless one from Sanrio is :
(via Geisha Asobi)
AsiaPundit closely tracks the activities of the evil mouthless one from Sanrio and files entries under the category “Hello Kitty watch.” Because of that, AP is linked on the frontpage of Google for searches looking for a . AP is happy to report that those who accidently end up on this page from Google will no longer have come here in vain. Sanrio is now trying to bankrupt fans of the evil mouthless one with overpriced diamond-studded watches.
Though Christmas was only a day or two ago, here is something you can start saving up for next year.
The models in this lineup of Hello Kitty diamond watches are available for about $1,500 each.
Almost all young Japanese women, the Shukan Post reports, carry vibrators on their person. The (mildly not worksafe) Asian Sex Gazette reports.:
The buzz on Japan’s streets nowadays is that just about any young woman is carrying around her own vibrator, according to Shukan Post.
Instead of the old days when aids were referred to as "adult toys" and carried a sleazy image, sex aids are now called "adult goods." It’s apparently become so common that it’s almost as though there’s a vibrator in every handbag.
"In the past, nearly all our customers used to ask us to disguise the labeling on our packages so they looked like they were cosmetics or something, but now we get much fewer of those type of requests," Norie Oda, operator of the Happy Woman adult aid shop, tells Shukan Post. "I suppose people just don’t see them as such a big thing anymore."
In the 2005 Durex World Sex Survey, Among Asian states Japan had a fairly high score when it came to vibrator ownership, with 28 percent or respondents saying they owned such a device, compared with 47 in Taiwan, 21 in Singapore, three in India, 14 in mainland China, 25 in Hong Kong, eight in Indonesia and Vietnam, 14 in Malaysia and five in Thailand.
The penetration level of vibrators in South Korea remains a mystery.
Some damn fool has decided to create a robotic version of the evil mouthless one from Sanrio. Worse still, that fool has given it some basic elements of artificial intelligence, Odd Things reports:
… today we have the "Hello Kitty robot", which height is 52 cm (20.4 in) and weight 6.2 kg (13.7 lb). These are some of its capabilities:
The evil mouthless one from Sanrio, with the help of Fender, is threatening rock n’ roll. Witness the evil that is the Hello Kitty® Stratocaster ®:
The Squier branded guitars, which draw upon classic Fender brand designs, offer an affordable, everyday instrument that is suitable for beginning guitarists and experienced musicians, alike. Potential Squier brand Hello Kitty instruments will include the Squier Affinity Stratocaster® guitar, the benchmark entry instrument model for the Squier line, and the Squier Mini electric guitar, a _ scale instrument suitable for beginners with small hands. In addition to these exciting guitars, Fender also plans to create a line of co-branded accessories including Hello Kittyguitar picks, straps, soft cases and a portable battery powered Hello Kitty amplifier. The Hello Kitty guitars will
range in price from $200 to $300 and are expected to be available at music stores and select Sanrio stores in October 2005.
(via Boing Boing)
Hello Kitty’s evil has infected the European Central Bank.:
Gold, silver euro coins with ‘Hello Kitty’ images to be sold
TOKYO, Japan—Coin-importer Taisei Coins Corp. and Sanrio Co. … will jointly sell three euro coins with images of the latter’s ‘’Hello Kitty’’ character on them, beginning on Dec. 5. A 1-ounce gold coin with a face value of 50 euros will cost 168,000 yen. A quarter-ounce, 10-euro gold coin will cost 52,500 yen, and a 1.5-euro silver coin will cost 8,400 yen. Images on the coins… depict ‘’Hello Kitty’’ characters enjoying life in Paris.
Artist Michael Paulus has done the world a favor by showing us what the evil mouthless one from Sanrio looks like under the fur and flesh.:
These Icons are usually grotesquely distorted from the human form from which they derive. Being that they are so commonplace and accepted as existing I thought I would dissect them like science does to all living objects — trying to come to an understanding as to their origins and true physiological make up. Possibly to better understand them and see them in a new light for what they are in the most basic of terms.
(h/t Gaijin Biker)
If you are lucky enough to travel by the Hello Kitty plane on Taipei-Japan routes, don’t leave the airsickness bag behind and do collect other’s bags (unused ones, I suppose). The starting bid at auction website for an airsickness bag with an adorable mouthless cat (no less!) is HK$120 / US$15, according to Hong Kong Apple Daily.
A Hello Kitty airsickness bag = 10 Big Mac.
Since LfC reported on the auctions Hello Kitty air-sickness bags have had a starting price of $10 on eBay, as can be seen in this auction.:
EVA AIRLINE A330 HELLO KITTY Sickness Barf Bag ,NEW , ONLY ON FUKUOKA LINE CAN GET IT.Winner pays 3 dollars for shipping worldwide. Registered mail $ 2 extra.
More from the evil mouthless one from Sanrio. AsiaPundit is glad that this wasn’t reported before his summer wedding (Mrs AsiaPundit may have gotten some bad ideas).:
In a move that caused mass fainting fits across Japan (and audible gasps in neighbouring countries) the Hankyu-Daiichi hotel chain launched its Princess Kitty wedding package. For a pretty penny you can spend your wedding day immersed in Hello Kitty tweeness, from the ring pillow to the seating cards to the flowers. What better way to be the envy of your single friends by snaring a man and out Sanrio-ing them at the same time!
Worse follows, a line of Hello Kitty wedding gowns.:
AsiaPundit again notes that Kitty has been a cause of violence, riots and mayhem. I expect a higher-than-average percentage of Kitty-related weddings will result in divorce. And remember, cats are not monogamous. (h/t Simon)
The mouthless one from Sanrio continues the expansion of her evil empire.:
Apparently the Hello Kitschy sightseeing bus was not enough!
Taiwan airline Eva Air has painted one of its Airbus A300-200 with the big-headed cat and her family members. The plane will fly daily between Taipei and Fukuoka.
The plane’s interior features Hello Kitty-related items as well, ranging from boarding passes, baggage tags, dining utensils, and lavatory papers to flight attendant uniforms.
Given Hello Kitty’s record with violence and mayhem, I putting the chances of a crash within the next two years at about 40 pct. The odds would be much worse if it were an Air China plane.
The Standard reports on the long arm of Sanrio and its damn cat:
The stage enthusiasts, a group of secondary students and drama lovers, said they received a letter Wednesday last week from local solicitor Victor Chu and Co representing Sanrio of Japan accusing them of stepping on Hello Kitty’s copyright tail.
Sanrio requested that the drama group disclose all the details of activities connected with the production, promotion and staging of the play Kitty Hunter, including advertising materials, ticketing information, audience counts, revenue and profit…Banky Yeung, artistic director of the group and writer of Kitty Hunter, said the drama was simply a love story about a girl named Kitty, even though plush Hello Kitty toys are used as props and images similar to the cartoon character serve as promotion materials…
The good news for the theatre troup is this kind of publicity will do far more for ticket sales than any flyer.
If you can stomach it, you can eat Hello Kitty.:
Singapore has started the world’s first toilet college, via CSR Asia.:
Loo cleaning will reach new heights in Singapore with the setting up of
the world’s first Toilet College, organizers said Sunday.
Funded partly by government agencies, the classes starting in October aim to change the perception of toilet cleaning as a menial job accompanied by
poor morale and pay to one with expanded responsibilities, higher salaries and possibilities of travel for those concerned about sanitation elsewhere.
Jack Sim, president of the World Toilet Organization headquartered here, is behind the college to be set up at the Republic Polytechnic, where courses will teach cleaners to use new equipment and techniques from Japan.
Tokyo Times takes a further look at Japan’s developing market for upscale latex sex dolls:
However perhaps not surprisingly, this demand for dolls has resulted in
the opening of a downtown establishment for silicon sex seekers. The
difference being that rather than having the dolls shipped out to
customers, LaLa rents out private rooms that are furnished with a bath,
toilet, and most importantly, a latex lover.
In an attempt to get the low-down on this burgeoning business, Dacapo
magazine sent two intrepid students to try out the service. First up,
so to speak, was 21-year-old Hiroshi. Opting to watch a racy video
beforehand to get himself in the mood, he was disappointed to find
that, “After I undressed her, I was upset to see that her head hadn’t
been properly screwed on.”
Actually, I had can recall having at least one flesh-and-blood partner who also didn’t have her head properly screwed on.
The Bharateeya Blog Mela is at Ashish’s Niti.
As Abhi notes, this is sick.:
Q: So how does a terrorist make money these days to fund his activities?
A: Porn. BBC News reports (thanks for the tip Srinath):
Rebels in India’s north-eastern state of Tripura are making
pornographic films to raise money for their separatist campaign,
The information has come from surrendered guerrillas of the National Liberation Front of Tripura (NLFT), according to police.
They say the rebels are forcing captured tribal women, and some men, to take part in the films.
The films are then dubbed to be sold in India and neighbouring countries.
Come on. It’s one thing if porn is between “willing” participants,
but to force helpless tribal people into it, and then dubbing over
their voices is just sick!
More evil from the mouthless one from Sanrio… reckless driving:
Super Girl, the Chinese version of American Idol, has concluded. The show attracted 300 million viewers, making it a major cultural phenomena. The weirdest part of the phenomena? China had a massive outbreak of voting. ESWN translates some analysis, here the China Daily notes that democracy doesn’t always produce the best results.:
But a more fundamental question
is: How come an imitation of a democratic system ends up selecting the
singer who has the least ability to carry a tune?
Li Yuchun, the androgynous girl with the weakest voice of the top five,
has been leading in popular votes by a huge margin throughout the
HK Dave notes that China has passed another law that won’t be enforced.:
According to Xinhua, a new law is to take effect March 2006 penalizing offences against public order.
From that date, there will be fines for pimps or for streetwalkers
soliciting for sex. They can be held for up to 5 days or fined up to
500 yuan if they do so in a public place.
While there are laws also against prostitution, it seems this may be
an attempt by the hidebound Chinese Communist Party to draw a line
under what it regards as acceptable bounds of morality in 21st century
China. For a quarter century, the gulf has grown between the utopian
idealism of old Marxist regulations and the public reality. Perhaps the
CCP has realized that its statute books have to better reflect the
situation as it really is, if they also want people to respect the
important laws that really matter!
Kim Jong-il’s connection with the Film Actors’ Guild in Team America wasn’t just an idle invention by the lads from South Park. The Dear Leader has long been attracted to Hollywood (Korea Times via NK Zone):
According to an apocryphal but
perhaps true story, it was during
the “studio” meeting of the Politburo
that the then 25 year-old
Kim Jong-il volunteered to take
control of the cinema industry.
Whatever his intentions, this
decision saved many people in
the industry from humiliation
and death. Kim Jong-il staged
large-scale self-criticism sessions,
but more serious punishments
In fact, Kim Jong-il protected
his beloved cinema world during
the turbulent years of the
“Kapsan purge,” which was
probably the last large-scale
purge of top leaders and their
associates in North Korean history.
After 1970, purges were
largely isolated albeit frequent
events, not large-scale campaigns
Under Kim Jong-il’s guidance,
the movie studios were refurbished.
He arranged the best
equipment to be imported from
overseas. This sounds fine until
one remembers that this meant
the re-allocation of scarce hard
currency reserves, which could
be used for buying anything else,
from medical supplies to new
battle tanks. However, the crown
prince loved cinema, and nobody
dared question his demands.
After all, new movie cameras are
much cheaper than missile
oHong Kongers remain under the spell of the mouthless one from Sanrio. Simon cites an SCMP item on a promotional event that went sour.:
The opening of an art exhibition of Japan’s most famous cartoon
character degenerated into farce at the Arts Centre yesterday as more
than 1,000 outraged fans complained about unfair arrangements
preventing them from getting a limited edition Hello Kitty toy. After
hours of heated discussion, manufacturers Sanrio Hong Kong vowed to
produce another set of the toys to calm the crowd.
Exhibition organisers and Sanrio hoped to bring Hong Kong fans an
artistically inspiring and nostalgic experience to celebrate Hello
Kitty’s 30th birthday. But fans who had queued since 11pm on Wednesday
night had just one goal - to buy one of 300 "detective-style" Hello
Kittys made especially for the exhibition. The exhibition opened at
10.30am and the 300 toys, plus other limited edition items such as
umbrellas, went on sale when the doors opened. Only 70 fans were
allowed into the hall at a time.
By noon, however, more than 1,000 were queuing outside.
Unlike earlier such Kitty-related mobs, no injuries were mentioned.
Japundit reports on a tour bus based on a Hello Kitty theme. As nothing good ever comes from the mouthless one, I expect we shall soon be hearing of a horrific bus accident.
This evil must be stopped.
This is gravely disturbing, as there are eight of these violence-inspiring devices on our refrigerator. (via Mutant Frog):
A scuffle broke out late Thursday night between a group of Japanese
tourists and locals at a restaurant in Wanhua (萬華), Taipei as result of
language barriers and miscommunication. The group of seven Japanese
were giggling and talking about the “Hello Kitty” magnets which have
recently a stirred frenzy among fans and collectors in Taiwan. Thinking
that the Japanese were laughing at them, a table of Taiwanese patrons
next to them—about 10 in all—approached the group and somehow a fight
Kitty has been at the center of the Singapore riots of 2000 and the gruesome Hong Kong Hello Kitty murder of the same year, which was retold in schlock horror films: Human Pork Chop and There’s a Secret in My Soup.
As a responsible society it is time we consider banning all Kitty products and call upon Sanrio to provide full compensation for all Kitty-related incidents.
Given the number of visitors who are suddenly arriving from XiaXue (hi Chloe!), it seems imperative to blog about something cute and pink. We here at AsiaPundit would not want to intimidate any first-time visitors with our revolutionary black-and-red color scheme.
Thankfully, Tokyo Times has alerted us to the latest fashion accessory for Hello Kitty fans:
Now, In an effort to further boost traffic by attacking other bloggers, let me note that there is a grave factual error in the above paragraph. While Sanrio does not produce a motorbike it did license the Hello Kitty brand to Yahama for a special-edition ‘motorcycle.’
Lee, you ignorant slut, do some freakin research (or at least Google).
The emergence of the Hello Kitty vibrator as a cult adult item caused friction between Sanrio and Genyo, and Sanrio ordered the company to stop making the units. Genyo refused, since it had paid a lot of money to license Kitty for their products. There seemed nothing Sanrio could do, since they had approved the item for sale (see the official Sanrio sticker on the boxes). The answer came when the Japanese tax authorities raided Genyo on suspicion of tax evasion. . .
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