A true to life drama of a Jamaican male, living and working in Japan since March 2008.

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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Usain Bolt Running Until 2017 / Sperm Donation Controversy in Japan / Crime in Japan on the Increase / Naughty Japanese Cops

Picture of the week:

Day 2346 ( Back to Work! / 

Man arrested after jumping from aircraft at Narita airport


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Got only about 4 hours sleep after all that flying. I actually started receiving emails about work while I was in Jamaica but refused to read them simply because I was on vacation !!! I assisted with the training of about 20 persons today. I was super jet lagged so I didn't do much. But still helped out the main trainer in whatever way I could. Visited my friend after work and fell asleep swiftly.  


Man arrested after jumping from aircraft at Narita airport

A 33-year-old man was arrested after he opened the emergency door and jumped from a Philippine Airlines plane as it was approaching the terminal at Narita airport on Saturday.
According to police, the suspect, identified as Hirokatsu Tachihara, got out of his seat and opened the emergency exit door as Flight 434 was approaching the terminal at around 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Fuji TV reported.
Police said he jumped about 4 meters to the tarmac and ran for about 150 meters before he was apprehended by security guards.
The flight had just arrived from Cebu.




Day 2347 ( Sperm Donation Controversy )
Friday, August 22, 2014

Saw 2 sets of demonstrations today from the new teachers who are joining my company in September. During summer, droves of teachers leave yearly. The only good thing is that this coincides with the time when JETs contract usually end. So there are always a few JETs in the training group. While watching the second set of demonstrations, jet lag started kicking in vigorously !!! I fought with it for a while then had to go buy an energy drink.  

After work, I went to Shibuya to meet a friend of mine, then went to the Jamaican restaurant there. 


Maternity clinic in Nagano sparks debate over sperm donation controversy

When a couple is ready to have children but there is an infertility issue with the father-to-be that prevents normal conception, in this day and age they have a number of options to consider. Artificial insemination from an anonymous donor is one route to take, as is as adoption. Or here’s another approach: If you’re the mother, how about getting pregnant through in vitro fertilization with a sperm donation from your husband’s father?
It’s become the topic of intense debate in Japan over the past few days after new details about the practice emerged from a maternity clinic in Nagano Prefecture.
In vitro fertilization is a form of assisted reproductive technology in which eggs are removed from a woman’s ovaries and fertilized in a test tube or dish (or “in vitro”), and then implanted back into the woman’s uterus. Depending on the specific situation, the sperm used to fertilize them is taken from either the woman’s partner or from a donor, whether anonymous or not. In the case we’re about to discuss, it’s taken not just from a friend, but the woman’s actual father-in-law. In other words, the child’s grandfather suddenly becomes his biological father.

The Suwa Maternity Clinic in Nagano Prefecture made waves through the Japanese media last week when they announced that from 1996 through last year, 79 couples at the clinic have collectively had 118 children using the woman’s father-in-law’s sperm via in vitro fertilization procedures. This isn’t the first time the clinic has been at the center of intense public scrutiny, either – in the past, they made headlines after performing selective abortions to fetuses.
As for this newest debate related to sperm donations at the clinic, here’s the breakdown of the numbers:
Between 1996 and 2013
146 couples received sperm from close relatives:
110 couples from the husband’s father
28 couples from the husband’s brother
Eight couples from anonymous sources
Out of the 110 couples who received sperm donations from the husband’s father, 79 couples became pregnant and a total of 118 children were born. Out of those same 79 couples, 19 of them went on to have two or more children using the same method.
As far as the causes of male infertility were concerned:
81 of the husbands, the cause was unknown
12 had a chromosomal abnormality
Five were undergoing cancer treatments
Two were related to spinal cord injuries
Lastly, the men who donated sperm (in other words, the mothers’ fathers-in-law) ranged significantly in age:
20 of them were in their 50s
73 were in their 60s
17 were in their 70s
According to Asahi Shimbun, this practice of using a close relative’s sperm could violate guidelines regarding infertility treatments already set in place in Japan. A report published by a health ministry council in 2003 decreed that in vitro fertilization should only be performed using eggs or sperm from an anonymous third-party donor. Similarly, the Japan Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology “limits in vitro fertilization to gametes of couples in legal or common-law marriages.”

Suwa Maternity Clinic Director Yahiro Netsu defended his clinic’s practices at a conference of the Japan Society of Fertilization and Implantation in Tokyo on July 31, stating that pregnancy rates after utilizing in vitro fertilization with the father-in-law’s sperm have been significantly higher (38.2%) than the rates resulting from other kinds of infertility treatments. In addition, many couples he works with actively seek to use the sperm of a close family member to secure a blood connection and inherit genes from the father’s side of the family. He stressed that such couples undergo extensive counseling beforehand, including how to clearly define family roles if a child is born so relations won’t become too complicated.
This topic has provoked some strong reactions from Japanese citizens concerning ethical issues. The majority were critical of the practice, posing questions such as “Will the children really be able to accept the fact that their grandfather is really their dad?”, while others seemed a bit more understanding of those couples who wish to create a stronger biological connection using the grandfather’s sperm. Finally, there were those who didn’t seem to favor one stance strongly either way, but felt that each individual couple should be allowed to make the decision based on their own values.



Day 2348 ( Godzilla / Crime in Japan on the Increase )
Saturday, August 23, 2014

Went to the theatres today. Can't even tell the last time I've been to the theatre. Probably a year ago. So I went to watch Godzilla ! And ooooh how jet lag was smacking me left and right. 

It was a bit different from the traditional Godzilla coming to destroy the city and helicopters etc trying to stop him. The talking parts had me falling asleep. But overall it was a good movie I would say. I give it a 7.5/10.  I just want to know why is Watanabe Ken 

scripted in every movie that has anything to do with Japan. Aren't there anymore good Japanese actors that can speak English?

Afterwards I went to H and M in Yokohama to do some further shopping. I realize now that I actually really like shopping!! Is that bad as a male? I bought 2 pants and this shoes ... 

But in navy blue. 


Japanese Crime Rate Rising

Ask people to come up with three words to describe Japan, and you'd probably get ... expensive, modern, and safe.
Expensive? Absolutely.
Modern? Well... relatively.
And Safe? Not necessarily.
In this trusting country, where people once left their doors and windows open and their car keys in the ignition, things have changed.
Break-ins are up, but more disturbing to most Japanese is the increase in break-ins involving violence. Earlier this year a family of four was murdered during a break-in.
National Police Agency figures show that the number of break-ins this year were two-and-a-half times more than last year. In the greater Tokyo area, there were 32,000 reported breaking and entering cases.
Car thefts have also been on the rise. Last year, 56,000 cars were stolen, up from 43,000 in 1999.
Economic Factors
Japanese media reports generally connect rising crime with a decade of stagnant economic conditions and poor employment prospects.
Crime in the past had traditionally been confined to Japanese crime gangs who rarely involved outsiders.
But the enactment of anti-gang legislation in 1992 has forced gangs to seek new sources of income, leading to a rise in turf wars among Japan's organized crime syndicates.
It is difficult to describe just how shocking this change is to the average Japanese citizen.
Personal safety is something people here have taken for granted for centuries, and it's still true that in most parts of Tokyo, people can walk about day and night without fear of being harmed.
But Japan's famous wa, or harmony, is under attack.
One telling measure of how things have changed; sales of locks and security devices are booming.
Do-It-Yourself Safety
Tokyu Hands Shibuya, a popular and always packed do-it-yourself store in a trendy district of Tokyo, was selling 10 times as many security devices so far this year than they did last year, and since a special home security section opened last November, business had soared.
"People are trying to upgrade their old locks to new ones which are stronger and better," Spokeswoman Saho Iwao told ABCNEWS.com. "But demand is now so high, for cylinder locks, customers actually have to wait for a month."
Other big sellers include security cameras, bugging devices, concealed cameras, window opening alarms and anti-car theft devices. Some specialty items even have a waiting list that sometimes takes months to service.
But while the rest of the world may be well accustomed to locks and bolts and battening down the hatches at night, the Japanese are not. For them, this change is both a reality check, and an end of innocence.



Day 2349 ( Japanese Driver's Licence Renewal/ More Strange Crimes in Japan )

Sunday, August 24, 2014

After returning to Japan from my 2 weeks vacation, I was greeted with this letter in all wonderful Japanese. I had not a clue as to how to decipher it. Yeah I know, it's bad. I can speak Japanese well enough but reading is an uphill challenge. luckily, its good to have some Japanese friends to call on in these times. I took pictures of the document and sent it to my friend who translated it for me. It was basically telling me that I had between now and October to renew my Japanese Driver's licence. If October passed, I would have to do over the driving test!! I had 2 options: 

(1) Take some time off from work to go to the police station in my area. But I would have to pay them to mail it to me plus wait for 2 weeks to actually receive it. 

(2) Travel for about 1 hour to the licence center, wait a few minutes and get it today, Sunday....   

Option 2 was clearly the best option, as I leave for Toyama this week and have absolutely no other time to do it. If I asked for time from work, it will affect my salary... and I already took an unpaid day off so no no no to option 1. I was even planning to go to a jazz/poetry concert thing tonight but it just didn't work out. My days in Yokohama are just crazy. 

So I went to the licence place, filled out some forms, did an eye test, took a photo, watched a 30 mins video and was of course falling asleep uncontrollably. And yeah I was out after about say 2 hours. 


SDF pilot arrested for taking photos up girl's skirt at train station

A 42-year-old Air Self-Defense Force pilot has been arrested after he took photos up a girl’s skirt at a train station in Nagareyama, Chiba Prefecture.
According to police, the suspect, identified as Shigetaka Katagiri, took photos up a 27-year-old woman’s skirt with his smartphone, while riding an escalator at Nagareyama Otakanomori station at around 10:30 p.m. on Tuesday, TBS reported.
Police said that while taking the pictures, Katagiri’s phone came into contact with the woman’s buttocks, causing her to notice and cry out. Katagiri attempted to flee the scene, but was chased and caught by the woman and a man who had been nearby at the time.
According to Ministry of Defense officials, in April of this year, Katagiri was transferred from the ASDF to the Ministry of Defense Inspector General Headquarters. As inspector general, Katagiri had been in charge of enforcing sexual harassment prevention protocols.




Day 2350 ( Mandatory Health Check / 

Wakayama man arrested for attaching underwear to cars of women he doesn’t know)

Monday, August 25, 2014

Met my friend from Uzbekistan and gave her some stuff from Jamaica. Including a cup looking similar to this one.. Not as big, but this is the closest one resembling it I could find online .... 

I also did my yearly health check.... Heart, pressure, pulse rate, 3 tubes of blood (for what I don't know), eye and ear check, chest X-ray (that checks for cancer but can also give you cancer) ..... Darn I'm concerned about my radiation intake over the past month. I took 7 planes plus did this x-ray thing..... that is probably a year worth of radiation in a month.   

I should get a copy of the results soon. My company should also get a copy of the results and check it, which I heard is an illegal practice in Japan by the way. 


Later in the evening, I went to Shibuya to have a chat with my Jamaican friend and an American friend from the facebook nomad.ness tribe group. He will be doing a transfer in Tokyo for a while. He is a pharmacist with a famous French company. We were having a heated debate with my Jamaican friend, who said he wanted to go back to Africa to live forever. I mean if anyone want to do that its fine.... He then said all Jamaicans are Africans, which I totally disagree with. We are mixed with all manner of races and I maintain that I am a Jamaican not an African. He maintains that he is African because he is black. I asked him where in Africa his lineage was from but he has no idea... I also asked him where in Africa would he live and he also had no answer. But healthy debate still you know....

A German guy was there listening on our conversation. Participating every now and again. We asked him if he saw himself as white, German or European. Off the bat he said German. To each his own still... Whatever you see yourself as then more power to you. I am 100% Jamaican


Wakayama man arrested for attaching underwear to cars of women he doesn’t know

A man in Wakayama Prefecture stands accused of violating the obscene behavior clause of the prefecture’s nuisance prevention order.
The suspect is 48-year-old Yoshikazu Kabe who works in the transportation business in Wakayama City. According to police, during the late night of March 3 and morning of March 4, he allegedly affixed several pairs of women’s underwear to the vehicle of a 22-year-old woman, while the car sat in a parking lot in the same city.
Also according to the police, the man admitted to the crime but also said that he had no relationship with the woman whatsoever. Furthermore, there were at least four similar incidents in the same city between March and May of this year that authorities feel may be connected.



Day 2351 (Cop arrested for filming woman taking bath)
Tuesday, August 26, 2014

I was asked yesterday to train a new employee for my company. The person already had experience teaching at the elementary school level but will be trying out the high school system now. Actually the main reason I think I was hired for this position is because I have high school teaching experience. I thought I would have to pad up the training to make it longer but actually everything that I planned to do took so much time that it all fitted. I think the training went well over all. The trainee of course had to do a brief presentation of what she learnt. It started at 9:30 am and ended at around 4 pm. I had 2 hours left at work, but absolutely nothing to do. I started falling asleep around my desk again. A combination of boredom and jet lag.  

After work I went to Machida (a busy part of Tokyo) 

to meet my old friend Vany (hey see I mentioned you again) and had some good yaki tori. We had a loong chat about random stuff. Was falling asleep while heading back home on both trains. I know I'm not so tired, so this was definitely jet lag. 


Cop arrested for filming woman taking bath

A 46-year-old Kanagawa prefectural police officer has been arrested on suspicion of using his smartphone to film a woman taking a bath at home.

According to police, the officer, identified as Akira Yanagida, entered the grounds of the woman’s apartment building in Fujisawa on the night of July 21 and filmed her in the bathroom through a window, TV Asahi reported Wednesday. The woman’s apartment is on the first floor.
Police said Yanagida filmed the woman, who is in her 30s, for about five minutes before leaving.
The case came to light after Yanagida tried to film another woman taking a bath on July 30. But she saw him and called police without letting him know. Police rushed to the scene and apprehended Yanagida as he was riding away on a bike, TV Asahi reported.
Police said they examined Yanagida’s smartphone camera contents and found footage of the July 21 incident.



Day 2352 ( Sponsors persuade Bolt to run until 2017 / More Naughty Japanese Cops !!)
Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Had a meeting at work today, and if you didn't know, all my company meetings are conducted in Japanese only!! I can catch at least a good 60% of what is going on though and I ask the other staff members afterwards, just to make certain. 

At lunch time, I went to the UFJ bank (the main bank in Japan) to collect a visa debit card that I applied for before heading to Jamaica.

They said I can't get it today, or I would have to wait within 3 days.... Unfortunately tomorrow I head back to Toyama :( ... This card can be used in ATMs all over the world... It would have been great if I had this card while travelling to the US and Jamaica. 


Sponsors persuade Bolt to run until 2017

Sprint superstar Usain Bolt revealed Friday that he will put back his planned retirement until 2017 at the request of his sponsors.
The six-time Olympic gold medalist and 100m and 200m world record holder had intended to retire from the track after the 2016 Rio Olympics, but he told a news conference Friday that he will compete for a further extra year.
“I think I’m going to do another year. My sponsors asked me to do one more year, so I will compete until 2017,” said the 27-year-old Jamaican.
If he sticks to his plan then Bolt’s last competition is likely to be the 2017 world championships in London.


Osaka police sergeant arrested for putting smartphone between woman's legs on train

A 41-year-old police sergeant from the Osaka Tondabayashi police station has been arrested after it was discovered that while riding in a train, he put his smartphone between a woman’s legs.
Osaka police identified the officer as Tetsuhiro Nomura. TBS quoted police as saying that the incident occurred at around 11 p.m. on Aug 12 in a train on the Kintetsu Minami Osaka line. Nomura is alleged to have placed his smartphone between the legs of a woman in her 20s who was sitting next to him at the time.
According to police, the woman, who had been dozing, grabbed Nomura after she felt the smartphone.
Nomura has denied any wrongdoing, police said, claiming that the woman grabbed him for no reason.
Police, however, later found a picture on his smartphone that had been taken at the time, showing a small bit of the woman’s clothing.
TBS reported that in 2000, Nomura was issued a warning by the chief of police after another case in which he groped a woman in a train carriage.

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