WTF Fun Fact 13719 – Managing Anger with Writing

Effectively managing anger is vital in all areas of life. Recent studies by Nagoya University reveal that writing down feelings of anger and then discarding the paper can greatly reduce, if not eliminate, these emotions. This method proves simple yet powerful for those seeking immediate relief from anger.

Write It Down, Throw It Away

Researchers at Nagoya University have developed a technique that helps individuals manage their anger by writing down their thoughts and disposing of them. Participants in the study wrote about issues that incited criticism from evaluators. They then noted their feelings on these harsh critiques. Following this, they were instructed to either throw these notes away or keep them. Those who discarded their notes saw their anger dissipate almost entirely. This act of throwing away the paper serves as a symbolic release of negative emotions.

This discovery has practical implications for daily life and stressful situations, particularly in business environments. Imagine you are in a tense meeting or receive frustrating news; simply write down your initial reactions on a piece of paper. Once you throw this paper away, you might feel a significant decrease in anger.

This technique allows for quick and effective anger management, helping maintain clarity and productivity in professional settings.

Cultural Insights and the Science of Managing Anger

The study also connects with traditional Japanese practices like the hakidashisara, where people write down their grievances on plates and then smash them. This ritual, much like the technique studied, involves physically discarding the source of one’s upset, fostering a sense of emotional release and relief. The research from Nagoya University provides a scientific foundation for these cultural practices, showing that such physical acts can help manage and reduce feelings of anger.

This simple yet effective method of managing anger can be a valuable tool for anyone. It encourages a healthier emotional response and could potentially reshape how we handle anger in both personal and professional contexts. As we further understand the relationship between physical actions and emotional relief, techniques like these could become more integrated into our strategies for managing daily stress and conflicts.

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Source: “After being insulted, writing down your feelings on paper then getting rid of it reduces anger” — ScienceDaily

WTF Fun Fact 13454 – Dumpling Flavored Soda

If you love dumplings, would you try a dumpling-flavored soda? We might. Or at least, we might have before reading about it.

Gyoza soda – Japan’s dumpling flavored soda monstrosity

Japan, a land of diverse flavors, occasionally throws up concoctions that can baffle even the most adventurous taste buds. And let’s just say they weren’t the only ones to “throw up” this particular culinary adventure.

One recent innovation in the Japanese beverage world was the dumpling (or gyoza)-flavored soda. This quirky drink has sparked intrigue, excitement, and disgust in equal measure.

This controversial drink was developed by Nagai Garden. And to be fair, it was marketed as “Gyoza cider.” It aimed to replicate the flavors of gyoza, a type of Japanese dumpling filled with meat and vegetables.

So it’s a carbonated, non-alcoholic beverage intended to encapsulate the salty, savory experience of a gyoza dumpling.

A flavor rollercoaster

The soda is reportedly a mix of sweet and savory tastes. First impressions are of a typical sweet soda, but the taste then turns into a confusing blend of savory gyoza flavors, ending with a garlicky aftertaste. The drink’s light yellow color gives no hint of the sensory rollercoaster it unleashes.

The reviews, to put it mildly, have been mixed. Online testimonials range from amusement to outright disgust, with some individuals expressing that the soda made them feel nauseated.

A general consensus is that the dumpling-flavored soda might be Japan’s worst-tasting soft drink. But in a world of flavor enthusiasts, the soda has its fair share of admirers, with some people appreciating its distinctiveness.

This unusual soda is a reflection of Japan’s ‘dare-to-drink’ culture. Japan’s beverage market is known for its wild array of flavors, often aiming to surprise or shock consumers. This culture has previously given us beverages such as salty watermelon Pepsi.

Novelty or Nasty?

While the drink is definitely unique, it’s up for debate whether it’s a novelty or simply nasty. For those who adore gyoza and are open to unusual flavor combinations, the dumpling soda could be an interesting exploration. However, for individuals with less adventurous palates, it’s probably a hard pass.

At the very least, the peculiar concoction has captured global attention, creating a buzz on social media and discussion forums. It’s a testament to the adage, “There’s no such thing as bad publicity.”

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Source: “Dumpling-Flavored Soda – Probably Japan’s Worst-Tasting Soft Drink” — Oddity Central

WTF Fun Fact 13430 – Japan’s Sauna Bus

Japan’s sauna bus (or saubus) is intriguing people around the world (and making more than a few wonder “why?!”)

Who wants to ride in a sauna bus?

A new cultural trend in Japan has emerged from the fusion of public transportation and traditional wellness practices. A retired public bus in Japan, creatively redesigned, now roams the streets as a fully functional, mobile sauna.

The old “sabus,” as it’s called, isn’t just a manifestation of Japanese ingenuity; it represents a revolution in urban relaxation.

A unique wellness journey

Designed by architecture firm Raumplan, this refurbished bus serves as a testament to innovative design, sustainability, and a celebration of the Japanese ritual of bathing. The exterior boasts the familiar green hue that once signaled the bus’s transportation role. The inside transports people into a realm of steamy warmth and tranquility.

The transformation from a public transportation vehicle to a wellness sanctuary is nothing short of mesmerizing. The bus seats have been replaced with a compact sauna, an anteroom, and an open deck.

The sauna, clad in aromatic Japanese hinoki cypress wood, can accommodate up to six people. Its large window offers a panoramic view of the surroundings, allowing bathers to enjoy scenic landscapes while they steam.

Venturing further inside, you find the anteroom. A relaxation space with wooden benches, this area is designed for post-sauna cool downs and socializing. Finally, the bus’s rear hosts an open deck, equipped with a shower for bathers to rinse off and freshen up.

Why a mobile sauna?

The creators envisioned the saubus as a way to connect communities and promote traditional Japanese wellness practices. By repurposing a public bus, they’re able to bring the sauna experience to various locations, from scenic lakeside spots to bustling city streets, making wellness accessible and enjoyable for all.

Beyond its functionality, the sauna bus serves as a symbol of sustainability and creative repurposing. It stands as proof that, with a bit of imagination, we can transform everyday objects into something extraordinary.

Through this project, Raumplan and its collaborators have redefined what a bus and a sauna can be, creating a new experience that is quintessentially Japanese yet universally appealing. The sauna bus isn’t just a place to relax and unwind; it’s a communal space that brings people together wherever it goes.

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WTF Fun Fact 13412 – Competitive Trash Collecting

In Japan, an unexpected trend has taken hold: Competitive Trash Collecting.

Have you ever considered trash collection to be a high-octane, competitive sport? Probably not, but this isn’t just your run-of-the-mill cleaning drive – we’re talking about an adrenaline-fueled race against time with the goal of making Japan cleaner, one piece of trash at a time.

The pursuit of cleanliness

Japan is renowned for its cleanliness and orderly society, but competitive trash collecting? This concept adds a fresh and thrilling layer to Japan’s ongoing pursuit of cleanliness. So, buckle up and get ready for a wild ride into the world of trash collection gone extreme!

Now, let’s answer the burning question: What is competitive trash collecting? As highlighted in a feature on Yup That Exists (cited below), it’s a dazzling, fast-paced sport where teams compete to collect as much trash as possible within a set time frame. Picture it as a kind of “trash triathlon” – part race, part scavenger hunt, and all parts fun and community service.

What is competitive trash collecting?

The sport injects a dose of high energy and camaraderie into the otherwise mundane task of picking up trash. Teams, donned in matching outfits, dash about parks and public spaces, armed with trash grabbers and bags. Their goal? To collect more trash than their competitors before the clock runs out.

At its core, competitive trash collecting in Japan is a celebration of environmental stewardship. It’s a testament to the national ethos of cleanliness and respect for public spaces. It’s also a testament to Japan’s knack for turning anything into a challenge.

But the beauty of this sport extends beyond mere competition. It’s also about rallying communities around a shared cause, inspiring individuals to take ownership of their surroundings, and promoting environmental awareness in a fun, engaging way.

The social impact of this trend is not to be underestimated either. The competitive element provides a bonding experience for participants while raising public awareness about waste management. It’s a win-win – good for the environment, great for community spirit!

Why is this even a thing?

One might wonder, how did something so peculiar come about? Well, it seems the Japanese have an uncanny talent for blending tradition and innovation. Cleanliness and respect for one’s surroundings are deeply embedded in the culture. Throw in a dash of Japanese ingenuity, and you have a sport that’s just as exhilarating as it is eco-friendly!

In a world grappling with waste management issues, this initiative shines as a beacon of hope. Who knew that tackling trash could be turned into a sport? It’s a testimony to the spirit of the Japanese people – their respect for nature, their communal values, and their unyielding zest for innovation.

Moreover, competitive trash collecting has the potential to inspire global change. It paints a compelling picture of how citizens can come together, have fun, and simultaneously tackle pressing environmental issues.

So, as you contemplate the curious case of Japan’s competitive trash collecting, remember this: Japan didn’t just make a sport out of cleaning; they turned it into a celebration of community, a respect for nature, and an action-packed thrill ride. In the process, they’ve created a blueprint for how we might reimagine our approach to environmental stewardship.

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Source: “Japan has been promoting trash collecting as a competitive sport, and it’s actually kind of working” — YUP That Exists

WTF Fun Fact 13409 – 3 Athletes vs. 100 Kids

Picture this – 3 athletes vs. 100 kids on the soccer pitch. The athletes, clad in soccer gear, their eyes on the field, facing a tidal wave of 100 energetic kids buzzing with anticipation. This isn’t the plot of a surreal animated show; it’s an actual TV program in Japan that offers one of the most exhilarating and entertaining spins on soccer we’ve seen.

Kicking Off the Soccer Spectacle

The Japanese TV show, an unexpected blend of sports, reality TV, and pure chaos, centers on a straightforward premise. The challenge? Three pro soccer players step onto the field to battle against a horde of 100 kids. The resulting spectacle, as enthralling as it is chaotic, turns traditional soccer on its head.

As the whistle blows, a sea of children engulfs the soccer field, their cheers and shouts echoing. The pros, dwarfed by the sheer number of their pint-sized opponents, exhibit a mix of bemusement and determination. Here, strategy takes on a whole new meaning.

3 Pros vs 100 Kids

In the face of such overwhelming numbers, the three pros rely on their skills, experience, and tactical maneuvering. The precision of their passes, their agile footwork, their calculated shots at the goal – everything is crucial. Each of them must negotiate a swarm of enthusiastic kids, a torrent of tiny football boots and darting bodies, all vying to intercept the ball.

On the other side, the 100 kids deploy their strategy – strength in numbers. They swarm the ball like bees to a hive, using their collective force to create an impenetrable fortress. It’s a hilarious yet heartwarming sight, watching the young players’ fierce determination to outplay their experienced opponents.

The Thrills and Spills of the Game

Amid the sheer chaos, the show brings unexpected moments of humor and excitement. Pro players find themselves hilariously outnumbered at every turn, blocked by a wall of young defenders. The kids, in contrast, often break into spontaneous celebration upon gaining possession of the ball, regardless of whether they score or not.

Watching the pros weave through the crowd, attempting to score against the enthusiastic horde, is a spectacle unlike any other. Equally thrilling is the sight of a kid making a daring attempt to break away with the ball, only to be immediately swarmed by a legion of teammates.

Beyond the Field: What This Show Signifies

On the surface, this might just seem like a wacky TV gimmick. However, the show resonates on a deeper level, reflecting a broader narrative about sports, camaraderie, and ambition.

It encapsulates the awe and aspiration of every child who has watched their sports heroes and dreamed of playing against them. It reminds us of the joy, the innocence, and the boundless energy that makes children’s sports so wonderfully watchable.

Conversely, for the pro players, it’s a chance to relive their early days, to remember why they fell in love with the sport. The lighthearted challenge brings out their fun side, reminding viewers that underneath the rigorous training and competitive pressure, soccer is, after all, a game meant to be enjoyed.

The Lasting Appeal of 3 athletes vs. 100 kids

This Japanese TV show, with its unique spin on soccer, offers an exhilarating ride packed with fun, laughter, and some truly memorable soccer. It captures the spirit of the sport in a way that’s fresh, vibrant, and decidedly out of the ordinary.

100 kids versus 3 pros may sound like an outrageous mismatch, but it’s a testament to the universal appeal of soccer. A reminder that whether you’re a seasoned pro, an aspiring young player, or a viewer at home, the beautiful game has the power to captivate us all.

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Source: “Here’s What Happens When Three Professional Soccer Players Go Against 100 Kids” — GQ

WTF Fun Fact 13330 – Kamikatsu Recycling

Kamikatsu recycling is intense. Citizens are expected to separate their recycling into 45 different categories! Kamikatsu is a small town located in Tokushima prefecture in Japan. It has become a paragon of innovation in waste management and, more specifically, recycling.

How did the strict Kamikatsu recycling program begin?

They began their journey to zero waste began in 2003 when the government mandated a policy to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills. The town stepped up in a big way, making its unique zero-waste initiative become a model for sustainability.

Kamikatsu’s strict recycling program requires residents to sort their waste into 45 different categories. The program is designed to maximize the amount of waste that can be recycled or reused and minimize the amount of waste that goes to landfills.

Some of the categories include:

  • Paper (including newspapers, magazines, cardboard, and packaging)
  • Glass bottles and jars
  • Aluminum cans and foil
  • Steel cans
  • Plastic containers (sorted by type)
  • PET bottles (sorted by color)
  • Tetra Pak packaging (such as juice boxes)
  • Food waste (to be composted)
  • Textiles (such as clothing and fabric)
  • Appliances and electronics
  • Batteries
  • Fluorescent lights
  • Bulky waste (such as furniture and mattresses)
  • Construction waste

Residents are even required to wash their waste before placing it into the correct bins.

What are the challenges of this type of program?

The town’s recycling facility has separate areas for each category of waste, and staff members carefully sort the materials. Of course, this comes with challenges. One is the cost of transportation – the town is in a remote location.

The second challenge is one all towns and cities face – the need to change the mindset and behavior of residents. The town has implemented a variety of programs to educate residents about the importance of waste reduction and recycling, including workshops, events, and campaigns.

However, changing deeply ingrained habits and attitudes takes time and persistence. As you might imagine, the town’s strict recycling requirements have been met with mixed reactions from residents. Some find the requirements to be burdensome and time-consuming.

Nevertheless, Kamikatsu has become a model for sustainable waste management and has earned international recognition for its sustainability project.

Meeting goals

Originally, the goal was for Kamikatsu to become a zero-waste town by 2020. While the town did not exactly happen, it has made significant progress in reducing its waste output.

By 2020, over 80% of its waste was being recycled, composted, or reused. The town has also taken steps towards becoming carbon-neutral, building a solar power plant and financing a project to turn food waste into biogas.

In 2016, the town opened its Zero Waste Academy to educate visitors about its recycling program.

Kamikatsu’s journey towards zero waste and carbon neutrality is a glimpse into a sustainable future and an inspiration to individuals and communities around the world.

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Source: “‘No-waste’ Japanese village is a peek into carbon-neutral future” — The Guardian

WTF Fun Fact 13248 – The Wind Phone

Itaru Sasaki’s wind phone (“kaze no denwa” in Japanese) is a telephone booth located on a hill in Otsuchi, Japan. The booth is a way for people to connect with loved ones who passed away in the 2011 earthquake and tsunami devastated the area. The wind phone has become a symbol of hope, healing, and connection for people worldwide.

What’s the story behind the wind phone?

Sasaki was inspired to create the booth after he lost his cousin in a tsunami. He wanted to create a space where people could talk to their loved ones who had passed away. The goal was to help them feel a sense of connection and comfort. Sasaki constructed the phone booth on property which overlooks the Pacific Ocean and installed a disconnected rotary phone inside it.

The phone booth is designed to be a quiet, peaceful space where people can reflect and connect with their loved ones. It is open to the public. The booth has become a popular destination for people from around the world. They come to leave messages for their loved ones and to listen to the wind.

The wind phone has become a symbol of hope and healing for many people. The sound of the wind blowing through the phone is an important element. It creates a sense of connection with the natural world and the spirits of dead loved ones. People who have visited the phone have described feeling a sense of peace and comfort after leaving messages.

The legacy of the phone booth

The phone has also become a symbol of resilience for the people of Otsuchi. The 2011 earthquake and tsunami were among the worst natural disasters in Japan’s history. They caused widespread destruction and loss of life. The phone is a reminder of the power of human connection and the importance of finding ways to heal and move forward after tragedy.

The phone booth has inspired people worldwide to create their own versions of the phone booth. There are installations in the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

The wind phone has also been the subject of a documentary titled “The Phone of the Wind: Whispers to Lost Families.” It explores the history and significance of the phone booth. The film includes interviews with Sasaki and people who have visited the phone and left messages for loved ones over the years.  WTF fun facts

Source: My Wind Phone

WTF Fun Fact 13137 – The Snowiest City in the World

The snowiest city in the world is in Japan. And we’re not sure why, but we really didn’t see that coming. We would have guessed someplace in Siberia or Canada. But the award for the snowiest city goes to northern Japan’s Aomori City.

More about the snowiest city in the world

Aomori City averages 312 inches (that’s about 26 feet) of snow each year! And it has a population of over 280,000 people. That’s A LOT of shoveling that needs to happen to keep a city moving.

On an island nation, you might wonder where they put all that snow. The answer is right into the bay.

If you’re interested, here’s a quite long video showing how it all goes down:

Now, there are likely snowier places on Earth, but people don’t live there. Aomori City is the snowiest place where people actually live.

Why is Aomori City so snowy?

According to CNN (cited below), “The extreme snowfall is caused by chilly Siberian winds that sweep into Japan from the northwest every November. As the cold air crosses over the warmer waters off Japan’s mountainous coastline, it gathers moisture, then rises and turns into snow.”

You may have heard of “lake effect snow,” but what Japan gets is “sea effect snow.” Since the sea doesn’t really freeze, they get thick, powdery snow until all the way up until April. And the city’s suburbs get blanketed as well.

Like so many snowy cities, residents aren’t thrilled about the snow, but they’re prepared for it. And the city makes the most of it. Things don’t close down easily, and the city takes advantage of tourism dollars from skiers and other snow-lovers. They also have amazing seafood, which is especially plentiful during the snowy months.  WTF fun facts

Source: “Aomori, Japan: Life in one of the world’s snowiest cities” — CNN

WTF Fun Fact 13095 – Hiroshima, Rabbit Island

Okunoshima (aka Rabbit Island) is a small island located in the Inland Sea of Japan, 43 miles east of the city of Hiroshima. It used to be used for weapons testing but is now inhabited by adorable bunnies.

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