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Bagel Heads: “New Japanese Trend” Is Neither New Nor A Trend

October 2nd, 2012 | 1 comment | Posted by Jen

Last week the Internet was all abuzz about “Bagel Heads,” this supposedly “new” body modification trend in Japan where people inject saline under their skin so their heads look like they’re exploding with delicious breakfast bread product for about 24 hours, just add schmear.

‘Bagel Head’ Saline Forehead Injections: Japan’s Hot New Beauty Trend?, the Huffington Post wondered.

‘Bagel Heads’: Shocking New Trend in Japan, Yahoo! News warned.

And the Herald Sun got a little punny with their reporting, titling their story on the fad, Bagel heads: A hole new trend.

The only problem with this “new” trend is that it isn’t new at all. The story of Bagel Heads first went viral in 2009, when the UK’s Bizarre Mag reported on it. The first line of the Bizarre post was quick to state, “This extreme body modification isn’t new, but it’s growing in popularity.” Many blogs and media outlets picked up the story then–which is when we blogged about it–including the premiere underground trendwatching paper of its time, The New York Times. Two years later, in 2011, Vice interviewed Ryoichi “Keroppy” Maeda, a photographer and journalist who’s been documenting the underground body modification scene in Japan for the last 20 years and who also happens to be the man who brought saline injections to the country. Maeda said in that interview that the bagel head thing had been going on “since 2007.” After that, still more blogs and media outlets picked up on the “new” (again) trend, with Neatorama declaring Continue reading Bagel Heads: “New Japanese Trend” Is Neither New Nor A Trend

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Crime Prevention Preparasian

October 22nd, 2007 | 0 comments | Posted by Jen

We try to resist “Wacky Jap” stories here at DISGRASIAN because so many of them are xenophobic, ricist, repetitive, and just plain lame. The image of the Japanese screeching in castrato voices, giggling uncontrollably, and loving getting their balls slapped is as insidious as the Evil Chinaman-trying-to-poison-you stereotype that appears in the news on a daily basis.

But a New York Times story Saturday about one bizarre device that an “experimental fashion designer” has come up with to prevent crime in Tokyo broke our Wacky Jap moratorium. The device? A vending machine disguise.

This is how it works:

Deftly, Ms. Tsukioka, a 29-year-old experimental fashion designer, lifted a flap on her skirt to reveal a large sheet of cloth printed in bright red with a soft drink logo partly visible. By holding the sheet open and stepping to the side of the road, she showed how a woman walking alone could elude pursuers — by disguising herself as a vending machine.

The wearer hides behind the sheet, printed with an actual-size photo of a vending machine.

Tsukioka also said that “her vending machine disguise was inspired by a trick used by the ancient ninja, who cloaked themselves in black blankets at night.”

O-kay. Wacky, yes, considering the story states that crime in Japan is in decline, though social anxiety over it is clearly high. But, to be fair, vending machines are everywhere in Tokyo…Tsukioka may be on to something!

All I know is, I think I’ve figured out what I’m going as for Halloween. Ain’t nobody gonna steal candy from me that night!

Thanks Mimi!

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I Still Need You, I’ll Still Feed You, When You’re 65

June 19th, 2007 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

To celebrate Sir Paul McCartney’s sixty-fifth birthday (and conveniently, the release of his new album on Starbucks’ Hear Music record label), fans from across the world were collected to share their sentiments from Starbucks couches in London, Seattle, Hong Kong, Tokyo, et al. on video:

Listen, I love Paul too. But why oh why when the Londoners and New Yorkers deliver warm, sentimental messages like grownups, do the Tokyo fans only seem to share their thoughts like this:

“Clap, clap, yaaayyyyy!!!!! [giggle while covering mouth]“

and this:
“We are adults that make happy signs with markers! Yay!”

and this:
“I dance!”

and this?
“Woo. I rike Paul McCartney and Wing.”

Oh boy… I can hear the label exec now:

“I love that part with the wacky Japanese in the middle. Got a good guffaw out of that one. Do you happen to have a guy with crazy Wings glasses? Classic. So global.”


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A Stroll With Diana and Jen

May 3rd, 2007 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

DIANA: Hmmrrffennnn mreern, shrmerfern ferfenortt shnerp? MMfjffdisifernfefrs mmafe.

JEN: What?

DIANA: Hey Jen, do you have another hair clip? I’m just trying to keep my hair out of my face.

JEN: I might have one here in my purse. Cool tie.

DIANA: Thanks, I figured now that Ashlee Simpsons isn’t wearing them, they’re safe.

JEN: She couldn’t be more whack.

DIANA: Yes, but the new nose did wonders for her face.

JEN: Well, arbitrary wonders.

DIANA: Right. What are you drinking?

JEN: Scotch.

DIANA: Out of a neon green plastic bottle?

JEN: It looks more earth-friendly.

DIANA: Nice.

JEN: I wish we had more pink things.

DIANA: Me too, it would be so cool if Lulu Guinness and Hello Kitty got together and made all of these wacky girly belts with bows and smiley cats all over them!

JEN: It would?

DIANA: Sure!

JEN: That’s a really lovely face mask.

DIANA: Yeah. My dad’s a doctor.

Source: Thanks Rachel and Kim for the photo!

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Helping Anime Suck More, One Day at a Time

April 9th, 2007 | 0 comments | Posted by Diana

Two Corporate Giants: Anime Selects and Ziddio (Yeah, I don’t know who they are either) have announced an incredible new contest for hungry Animephiles: Be a Tokyo Reporter! The Lucky Winner will be flown to Tokyo to Cover the 2007 Anime Fair for a video segment.

What do you know, in a most serendipitous turn of events, I happened to come upon the beat sheet for the trailer:

God, I LOVED that movie “Lost In Translation.” Nothing belittling or offensive in that either.

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