2021.02.01[Mon] 09:00

Interviews(インタビュー)

【Today's Guest】

Jonathan from U.K.

(an English conversation teacher)

 

2021.01.25[Mon] 09:00

Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健)

【Chinese Steamed Buns】

So, today our first topic is about Chinese Steamed Buns, yummy treats that you can easily snack on in this cold season. You often see them all toasty and warm lined up in cases at convenience stores. Have you every had one? I've had more than I can count....can't resist them!

Although they are originally from China, they were brought to Japan and people loved them. Some typical ones that are pretty popular are 'Niku-man', which are pork buns, 'An-man' which have sweet red bean paste stuffed inside, and 'Pizza-man' and 'Curry-man”which are pretty self explanatory. There are quite a few that you can buy frozen and cook up at home as well. Actually, if you've got some hotcake or pancake mix at home, you can make the bun part pretty easily yourself so why not try making some filled with some original flavors of your home country? I guess for me, I could try some kimchi or bulgogi in one and ummm...hamburgers in another? I might stick with the ones the professionals make!

 

【Tuberculosis prevention】

Now we have some important information from Fukuoka City. In 2019, 205 people in Fukuoka City were diagnosed with tuberculosis. Tuberculosis is a disease that causes inflammation of the lungs mainly by Mycobacterium tuberculosis. It is an infection disease that is transmitted person to person.

Symptomos of tuberculosis include coughing, phlegm, fever, bloody phlegm, chest  pain, lethargy, night sweats and/or weight loss. In the beginning, it does resemble the common cold. 

If you've noticed that you've had a cough for over two weeks, have had a lot of phlegm, you've felt lethargic or you've suddenly lost weight, please see a medical professional for an exam as soon as possible.

Even if you are infected, tuberculosis does not always develop, however if your body cannot fight the tubercle bacillus, over time, an infection may develop.

If you are diagnosed with tuberculosis, you can fight it off by taking the proper medicine every day according to your doctor's orders.

And, to prevent the spread or start of infections, make sure you get plenty of sleep, eat a good, balanced diet and get enough exercise. Making an effort every day to live healthily is the most effective prevention.

In Fukuoka City, there is a medical interpretation service available if you do need to find a hospital or need some advice. It is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The phone number for that service is 092-733-5429. Again, that number is 092-733-5429. Interpretation is available in 18 different languages.

 

【Preventing the spread of Covid-19】

And finally, a reminder that although measures to prevent the spread of Covid-19 are being taken, more and more people are getting out and about. So, wear a mask, wash your hands and gargle and also practice the 3 C's. And so you don't forget, the 3 C's mean you should avoid closed rooms, try not to be in crowded places and avoid close contact conversations. It's up to each of us to help prevent the spread!

2021.01.18[Mon] 09:00

Housing(住宅)

【Dai Kan-the Big Cold, or the coldest season of the year】

Well, I'm sure we've been feeling it as it is winter...that's the cold. And did you know that around the 20th of this month, there is a day called Dai Kan, literally translated as the Big Cold to mark the coldest season of the year?

It's around this time of year that the lowest temperature of the year is observed in various places around Japan. It's also the time in which Kangeiko or Mid-winter exercises are done by those practicing martial arts. The TV news often shows children in their white practice uniforms around the beach training to steel their minds and bodies against the cold.

This cold season is also when things like Nihonshu or sake and Miso are made, which actually takes advantage of the cold. And when we get through Dai Kan, it means that spring is on it's way. So, take care of yourself, try not to get sick, avoid injuries and make your way through this season. In Michigan, winter is just cold through and through and we don't typically expect to thaw out til late March so the only thing to do is to enjoy the winter as best as you can! For me, that always meant sledding on a hill not too far from my house with my dad and sister and drinking lots of hot chocolate after. There aren't really any sledding hills here in Fukuoka but I can still drink hot chocolate to get through the cold days!

 

【Tips on how to conserve energy in the winter】

So, in this cold, we naturally want to stay warm, but that can get expensive and it's not great  for the environment to be using electricity all the time or burning through gas. So, Fukuoka City has some information  and tips for you to help you out this winter. The city is in fact aiming for a carbon free society in light of global warming. They are working on it but it's also up to each of us to save energy as well. And with some ideas and tricks we can save some money on our electric bills as well.

First, let's talk about conserving heat. These are some pretty simple things that we can all do. Wearing layers of good heat retaining clothing is step one. Setting your heater or unit at 20 degrees Celsius is a fair number to keep it at. We all know that hot air rises, which means that all that lovely warm air from our units goes straight up to the ceiling. To bring it back down again and warm up the whole room, a house fan or circulator pointed up will help to distribute the heat. It seems that a dusty filter on your unit wastes energy so to get the most efficiency out of it, make sure you keep it free of dust with a quick vacuum. Also, be sure to keep the area around the outdoor unit clear of things.

Actually, kotatsu heated tables and electric blankets, compared to air conditioning units, can be used quite cheaply to keep things warm. And when you sleep, you don't even need to use the heat, just stick a hot water bottle in with you at night to stay toasty. This is my go to trick!

That and a fleecy mattress topper or cozy sheets will keep you warm and save you tons on electricity.

Looking at other places in the house, if you set your fridge from the strong setting to the middle setting you can save around 1500 yen a  year. In the winter, setting the fridge to weak or low is enough to keep things cold, so with all of the other tips I mentioned before, it's something you can try to save electricity.

Heated toilets seats are a wonderful thing in Japan and you can very simply save about 1000 yen a year by shutting the lid on them to keep the heat from escaping.

Just little things that we don't normally think about can result in big saving in terms of energy and money. So, as long as you can stay healthy and live comfortably, why not try a few of these tips?

 

【Prevention of the spread of Covid-19】

Finally, I'd like to just remind you to take care to help prevent the spread of Covid-19. Recently, because measures to prevent the spread are being taken, more and more people are getting out. So, wear a mask, wash your hands and gargle and also practice the 3 C's. That means you should avoid closed rooms with poor ventilation try not to be in crowded places and avoid close contact conversations. It's up to each of us to help prevent the spread!

2021.01.11[Mon] 09:00

Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健)

【Coming of Age Day】

So, today, the 2nd Monday of January, is Seijin no Hi, or Coming of Age Day in Japan.

The purpose of the day is to celebrate and encourage those young people who have officially become, and are aware that they are, adults and are making their way through life on their own two feet.

Men and women who have turned 20 years old are invited to a Coming of Age ceremony, held by their municipality for these young adults. However, this year, due to the influence of Covid-19, some local governments may cancel ceremonies this year or break it up into several sessions.

At the ceremony, men typically wear suits and women will often wear kimono, however there are those who come in character costumes or really flamboyant get-ups as a group.

And it seems that recently, for kids who turn 10, more and more elementary schools have been holding a kind of half coming-of-age ceremony or Nibun no ichi seijinshiki. I guess it's nice to have milestones in life to celebrate. 

In the US, 16 is usually a big year to celebrate as it's when we can officially drive, assuming we've passed our driver's license test. 18 is another milestone year, we are officially adults and can vote, get married and join the army. Strange that we can't drink until we are 21 though, isn't it! 21 is usually a big party kind of birthday as it's the official drinking age. I guess it's sometime between 18 and 21 that we become adults, but even as a “adult” in age, I sometimes feel like I still haven't grown up at all. Maybe next year. Anyway, a big congratulations to all of those who are celebrating today! I wish you all the best as you begin “adulting”!

 

【Be careful of the Norovirus】

Now, I have some information for you from Fukuoka City. Now that we are in the winter season, it is really easy to get infectious gastroenteritis and food poisoning due to the Norovirus.

The virus is really strong and can be transmitted even in small amounts.

This virus can enter your body via your hands or through food and if it does, causes terrible symptoms like diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and a fever.

You can get sick just by inhaling the virus as it's been spread through the air due to an infected person vomiting or having diarrhea. And if an infected person cooks food, the virus can easily spread to those who eat that food. If you think it sounds terrible, well, you're right. It is.

Also, be careful when eating shellfish like oysters, because if they aren't thoroughly cooked to the right temperature, you can get the virus from them.

Severe vomiting and diarrhea can cause dehydration so if you do get sick, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

People generally recover after 2 to 3 days but even if you no longer have symptoms, the virus can still be detected in your stools from a week to a month later. 

So, to prevent the spread of this virus, please take the following precautions. First, before you cook or eat and after you use the toilet, make sure you use soap to wash your hands.   

Wash your cooking utensils thoroughly with boiling water or chlorine bleach.  Alcohol sprays aren't very effective against the Norovirus. However, the virus will die if exposed to temperatures from 85 to 90 degrees for over 90 seconds.  So make sure you cook your ingredients all the way through, really scrub any veggies and fruits that you eat raw and avoid cooking when you don't feel well.

 

【Prevention of the spread of Covid-19】

I've got one more thing for you today and that is to ask you to take care to help prevent the spread of Covid-19. Recently, because measures to prevent the spread are being taken, more and more people are getting out. So, wear a mask, wash your hands and gargle and also practice the 3 C's. That means you should avoid closed rooms with poor ventilation try not to be in crowded places and avoid close contact conversations. It's up to each of us to help prevent the spread!

2021.01.04[Mon] 09:00

Interviews(インタビュー)

【Today's guest】

Alex

(English Teacher)

 

http://www.kensington-english.com/

2020.12.28[Mon] 09:00

Rules & Manners(ルール・マナー)

【Toshi Koshi Soba or Year-Crossing Noodles】
In Japan, New Year's Eve is called Oomisoka and on the eve of the 31st, people traditionally eat Toshi-koshi soba. Toshi-koshi soba is translated as “year-crossing noodles”, the idea being that when you eat these long noodles, you can live a long life and throw out all the hardships and bad luck from this year and cross into the next year. All around Japan, different regions have their own different kinds of toshi-koshi soba. And the time to eat them? Well, usually before the clock strikes midnight to ring in the new year.

You can get these noodles at many places now, not only at restaurants but also at convenience stores and supermarkets so if you've never tried them, perhaps this year is a great chance to try them. Of course, if you or someone you know has a soba allergy, you'll want to be careful! For those who can't have soba, udon, somen or even ramen are delicious substitutes!

Oh yeah, it's actually said that new year's eve is the busiest time of year for soba shops!
In my hometown, we don't really have any kind of special food that we eat for the new year although I've heard that in some parts of the US, like in the South, they eat black-eyed peas and some other foods as they are supposed to bring luck in the new year. I think though that most people just do some kind of countdown party and there's a lot of champagne drunk as the clock strikes 12. When I was young, it was a tradition in my house for my parents to have a glass of Bailey's liquor and to let us have a small amount at midnight to celebrate.

 

 【Ward office consultation and putting out the garbage over the New Year Holidays】

Now, I have some information from Fukuoka City. Over the new year holidays, there are a few changes to ward office consultation hours and days on which you can put out the garbage. For ward offices and the  Health and Welfare Center, please be aware that these places will be closed from Tuesday the 29th of December to Sunday the 3rd of January. The last day they will be open in 2020 is Monday the 28th  of December. They will reopen in the new year on Monday the 4th of January.

In the days before and after the new year holidays, the ward office consultation counters will be busy so make sure you give yourself plenty of time when you go there.

Also, from the Thursday the 31st of December to Sunday the 3rd of January, please do not put out your garbage for pick up. This includes burnable and nonburnable garbage and glass and pet bottles. Burnable garbage can only be put on your area's decided garbage day up to Wednesday the 30th of December. For nonburnable garbage and glass and pet bottles, if Sunday January 3rd is your regular day to put them out, instead they can be put out beforehand on Wednesday the 30th.

Also, applications and pickup for oversized garbage will be stopped between Tuesday, December 29th to Sunday, January 3rd , so please be aware of that.

 

【Prevention of the spread of Covid-19】

Last but not least, make sure you take care over the holidays to help prevent the spread of Covid-19. Although measures to prevent the spread are being taken, more and more people are have been getting out and with seasonal events like New Year's Eve and the New Year holiday, there will be, no doubt, a number of opportunities for people to get together. So, wear a mask, wash your hands and gargle and also practice the 3 C's. And so you don't forget, the 3 C's mean you should avoid closed rooms, try not to be in crowded places and avoid close contact conversations. It's up to each of us to help prevent the spread!

2020.12.21[Mon] 09:00

Rules & Manners(ルール・マナー)

【Christmas】

Well, happy holidays to everyone, Christmas is almost here,  and I hope people are feeling some of the winter holiday cheer. Christmas is thought to be the day to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ and they say the word Christmas comes from Christ's Mass. In Japan, it's said that the first Christmas party ever held here was in the beginning of the Meiji period. Now, it has become something of a national event that transcends religion, celebrated at the end of the year even throughout households that don't have anything to do with Christianity.

And, in Japan, when Christmas comes, fried and roast chicken do some good sales. It's a bit of a tradition to see people waiting in long lines outside of chicken fast food shops trying to get their holiday feast.

If you are planning to get together with friends for a Christmas party this year, try to keep your group small, make sure you have plenty of ventilation and try to wrap things up within two hours. Doing a home party online with each of of your friends might not be a bad idea either! I've got a quiet dinner planned for Christmas day and I might try to meet with a couple of friends to do a gift exchange over the weekend but I'll be sure to avoid the 3 C's to keep  myself and everyone else safe!

 

【Spend the New Year's Holiday safely】

Next, I have some important announcements from Fukuoka City.

From the end of the year to the start of the new year, there are a lot of opportunities to drink alcohol.  So, make sure, 100%,  that you don't drink and drive, don't let others drink and drive, never forgive those who do drink and drive and don't ignore someone who would drink and drive. Even cycling after drinking is against the law. And it's important to remember that you can sometimes have alcohol in your system the next day. Even if you think you only have a little bit of alcohol left in your system, it doesn't mean you should drive, because you shouldn't. If you know that you need to drive the next day, then just don't drink the day before.

Every year, the end of the year sees more and more traffic accidents.  If you are out, late at night, make sure you are wearing bright or reflective clothes that are easy for drivers to notice.  And if you are driving, make sure you turn on your lights earlier in the evening.

Next, we have a warning for you about bag snatching incidents. There have been a number of these crimes from the evening to midnight in places where there are few people around. A lot of these incidents have occurred with the criminals riding motorbikes and snatching bags as they pass by. To avoid being involved in such an incident, make you carry you bag on the side opposite to the road and pay attention to your surroundings, making sure you look back behind you if you sense signs of people or hear a motorbike.

Finally, please be aware that suspicious phone calls claiming to be from the Immigration Bureau or Embassy have been reported recently. Things like “There is something wrong with your visa” or “Your fake passport has been found and you can't return to your home country. You need to pay to undo this situation” have been said. The Immigration Bureau would never call and ask you to transfer money. Please be careful of incoming calls from numbers that you do not know.

Take care of yourself and those who are important to you to have a safe and secure end of year and start to the new year.

 

【Prevention of the spread of Covid-19】

And recently, although measures to prevent the spread are being taken, more and more people are getting out and with seasonal events like Christmas, New Year's Eve and the New Year holiday, there will be, no doubt, a number of opportunities for people to get together. So, wear a mask, wash your hands and gargle and also practice the 3 C's. And so you don't forget, the 3 C's mean you should avoid closed rooms, try not to be in crowded places and avoid close contact conversations. It's up to each of us to help prevent the spread Covid-19.

2020.12.14[Mon] 09:00

Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健) , Children & Childcare(子ども・子育て) , Housing(住宅) , Events & Entertainment(イベント・娯楽)

【Toji-The Winter Solstice】

Well, today, I've got another little bit of Japanese culture that I think may occur in many other countries around the world. In Japan, it's called Toji and it's on December 21st. Toji is one of Niju-shisekki, the 24 divisions of the solar year from the old calendar. And this is when we have the shortest day and longest night of the year. In Japan, on Toji,  people traditionally take yuzu baths, basically they have yuzu floating in their bath, making it quite fragrant, and eat pumpkin.

The yuzu bath is said to help blood flow which warms up the body and also helps to prevent colds. The pumpkin is supposed to strengthen the skin and mucous membranes which should provide resistance to infectious diseases. It has also long been said that if you eat pumpkins during the winter solstice, you won't catch a cold. I can't say that I've heard of eating anything special on the winter solstice, but I do know that many people say a hearty, hot bowl of chicken soup is what you need for the winter to keep yourself healthy! That, and ginger and lots of vitamin C to keep the colds away. Fortunately, It's mikan season in Japan so getting that vitamin C is no problem! With Covid-19 and influenza prevalent this season, make sure you eat lots of nutritious foods and take care of yourself as you make your way to the end of this year and into the next!

 

【Foundation Consultation Desk】

Next, I have some information from Fukuoka City about the Fukuoka City Consultation Support Center for Foreign Residents. This support center can give information on, as well as introduce the appropriate contacts, for things related to general life here such as residency procedures, employment, medical care, welfare, childbirth, child-rearing and child education. The phone number for the center is 092-262-1799. Again, that number is 092-262-1799. The center is open from 8:45am to 6pm on weekdays but is closed on Saturdays, Sundays, national holidays and for the New Year's holiday period. If you  call, help is available in 19 different languages.

 

【The Christmas Market】

I'm sure you've started to feel a bit of the holidays around you as illuminations go up around the city and every year, from November to December until Christmas Day, the Fukuoka Christmas Market is held in both Hakata and Tenjin and has become a bit of a winter tradition in Fukuoka City.

It's actually the largest Christmas Market in Japan and there are a number of shops all lined up around the square. It's an event where you can enjoy warm drinks like mulled wine and hot chocolate and delicious foods all while taking in the Christmas illuminations and decorations all around you.

This year, the festival is being held in 4 locations around the city-at the plaza in front of Hakata Station, at the Fureai Hiroba in front of Fukuoka City Hall, as well as at the El Gala Passage and IMS Square. Whether with family, friends, or a sweetheart, it's a wonderful chance to make some fun winter memories.

 

【Prevention of the spread of Covid-19】

Of course, if you do go, it's important to keep in mind that we still need to take care this winter to help prevent the spread of Covid-19. Although measures to prevent the spread are being taken, more and more people are getting out and with seasonal events like Christmas, New Year's Eve and the New Year holiday, there will be, no doubt, a number of opportunities for people to get together. So, wear a mask, wash your hands and gargle and also practice the 3 C's. And so you don't forget, the 3 C's mean you should avoid closed rooms, try not to be in crowded places and avoid close contact conversations. It's up to each of us to help prevent the spread!

2020.12.07[Mon] 09:00

Rules & Manners(ルール・マナー) , Other Topics(その他)

【Oseibo-Winter gift-giving】

So, I know this season, many people are thinking about presents to give and get. In many cultures, it is a season of gift-giving and in Japan, it is the season to give Oseibo. If you haven't heard of Oseibo, it's a custom in which a gift is given to those who have taken care of you throughout the year, a kind of thank you for everything they've done over the year. Often it is food or drink but there are a number of different gifts given.

This tradition is said to have originated in the Edo period. At the end of the year, merchants would present gifts to landlords or business partners while also giving the message of “I am always indebted to you, thank you for your continued support”. Oseibo is normally given from the beginning of December to just around the 25th of December but in Kyushu, most people get their Oseibo delivered between the the 10th and 20th of the month. Is there anyone you want to thank this year for their care and support? It might be nice to send them a little something! I usually prepare a little something for those who have helped me out, for me Christmas is a big occasion anyway so giving gifts this season is a pretty normal thing to do. This year, I have some really nice chocolates and jams I want to give out. I've also got masks, that I've made, to pass out as well. Hopefully all of it will be well received!

 

【World Human Rights Day and Human Rights Week】

Next, I have information from Fukuoka City about human rights. Human rights are  the inalienable rights which everyone is entitled to as a human being from the time they are born.And December 10th is Human Rights Day and this isn't something just in Japan, it is something that take place all over the world and is a day to think about Human Rights. And from December 4th to the 10th is Human Rights Week, and here in Fukuoka City, a Human Rights Respect Week is held with the goal of creating a comfortable, discrimination free place to live.In the same way that we recognize ourselves as individual, irreplaceable beings, at the same time, others are also individual, irreplaceable beings. And so this is an important week to recognize that all of us are valuable, precious beings.

We need to eliminate prejudice and discrimination against women, children, the elderly, foreigners, those with disabilities and all others who may face that negativity. Simply, we need to respect one another's human rights.

So let's keep compassion and a person's irreplaceability in mind.

 

【Illegal waste dumping】

I hope this doesn't really need to be said, but dumping oversized garbage and household waste in the mountains, forests, by the seaside, by rivers, on the road, or in parks is illegal.

In Fukuoka City, at the end of the year, many people do a big house clean and a lot of garbage is produced. As such, December has been designated as “Illegal Dumping Prevention Reinforcement Month”. Activities will be undertaken to strengthen measures to prevent illegal dumping of waste.

Fukuoka City has, in cooperation with the police, installed surveillance cameras and warning signs in places where illegal dumping is common and will carry out patrols of those areas.

Home appliances like TV's, refrigerators and freezers, washing machines and dryers, air conditioners and the like are all subject to the Home Appliance Recycling Law and there is a set way to dispose of them. If you are buying replacement appliances, the shop will pick up your old appliance. In Fukuoka City, you can speak with Best Denki or Yamada Denki for help with this.

When disposing of these items, recycling fees or collection and transportation fees are necessary. Traders who advertise that they collect unneeded items for cheap are illegal collectors who have not received permission from Fukuoka City. Please do not use these unauthorized collectors as problems such as illegal dumping, high fees and improper processing of waste may occur.

 

【Prevention of the spread of Covid-19】

I've got one more thing for you today and that is to ask you to take care this winter to help prevent the spread of Covid-19. Although measures to prevent the spread are being taken, more and more people are getting out and with seasonal events like Christmas, New Year's Eve and the New Year holiday, there will be, no doubt, a number of opportunities for people to get together. So, wear a mask, wash your hands and gargle and also practice the 3 C's. It's been a while since I've mentioned them, but you should avoid closed rooms, make sure they are well ventilated, try not to be in crowded places and avoid close contact conversations. It's up to each of us to help prevent the spread!

2020.11.30[Mon] 09:00

Interviews(インタビュー)

【Today's guest】

Kori (English Teacher)

http://www.kensington-english.com/

DJ紹介

  • Colleen
  • Colleen
  • 誕生日:11月11日
    血液型:AB
    出身地:USA Detroit, MI
    特技:I can plan a party at anytime!
    興味あること・趣味:居合道、柔術、料理、スキューバダイビング
    好きな音楽:Almost everything, depends on my mood.

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