Getting letters all the time


Originally published on on August 2012


Regarding “To Nuke Or Not To Nuke,” (The Last Word, Aug 3): I was all set to be outraged at a controversial essay but I can’t find anything here to disagree with. I don’t understand the accompanying cartoon however.—kevcham

Guff. War is bad. Japan’s wartime leaders loons. We know. Are you saying, um, “War is bad”? Trivializing headline awful.—@streetlevelTFF

I’m often amazed at what a solid grasp of history and world politics English teachers have. It just seems like a waste that such a pragmatic and forward- thinking intellectual giant like this should be twiddling his thumbs in a conversation school in Kanagawa. I mean, war is bad, but we bombed the Japanese to save them from themselves (and we even did it twice, just in case they didn’t quite fully understand a nuclear holocaust the first time around). The author has done extensive research to provide evidence of this, even going as far as reading the same book that every other white middle-class expatriate has read before. Blows. Me. Away.—johnnyrabbit

Under the Geneva convention the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombings are defined as crimes against humanity and Truman as a war criminal. Claiming that the mass murder of 200,000 saved more lives is pure science fiction, with no legal or moral founding: otherwise it could be used by Hitler, Breivik and other mass murderers as a defense. Sidell’s comments are offensive and his ideology Neanderthalic at best!—Monty Carlo


Regarding “Burlesque,” (Bar Review, Jul 6): I love burlesque so I was happy to hear of this. Three blocks from Roppongi station it’s delightfully close, and well cooled inside. Being gaijin, they grabbed the only English-speaking dancer who told us the show was 10pm and not 10:30pm, so we opted for the next show at midnight. The English-speaking dancer stayed with us most of the night and boy were we happy she did. She was the star of the show doing the most fabulous acts on hoop and pole! Just a few random notes. There was pink-scented toilet paper; in both bathrooms. Although very sexy no nudity is shown, which in America we sometimes get. The acts in between shows are karaoke, weird slideshows, boring choreography to AKB48 songs, and maybe a pole act. Though the ambiance felt more strip club than burlesque I got my money’s worth and plan on a girls’ night out there sans the guys and getting into that front row. Rowr.—Stacey

cover shivers

Regarding “Phantom Power,” (Feature, Aug 3): The cover is so colorful. The feature article is very good, too, and I was excited! I just had an image that summer is kind of horror season in Japan, maybe due to TV or media. But seeing the cover comment, I realized it is because of obon, the season when family ghosts come back. I’ve already got a few copies.—Yukie


Regarding “An Olympic Undertaking,” (The Last Word, Jul 20): Tokyo’s people might “deserve” the economic rush of the Olympics, but it isn’t about that. Look at this city: Have you ever taken an ambulance? Ever tried to go into a hotel emergency exit? At many hotels their “emergency exits” are full of stuff they can’t figure out where else to put. And English? I’m astonished after 20 years that when I ask people in shops, gyms, hotels, or banks if they can speak English, I get the deer-in-headlights look. Ishihara lives in a fantasy world. He doesn’t like foreigners and only wants them to spend money in his precious personal playground. Tokyo deserves uplifting news… but the Olympics would crush its fragile system. More importantly, there’d be endless screaming promotion and ads and goods and hideous AKB48 “songs,” not to mention construction 24/7, oblivious to the environment, and the health and safety of others for years leading up to 2020. So, no, this is NOT the answer.—tatami53


Regarding “Photo of the Day,” (July 30): Great picture! Inspired this haiku:
a perfect seedhead
a dandelion of light
a firework explodes

Been your loyal reader since 1997 when first published as Tokyo Magazine in Tower Records Shibuya—@arukachi

[Actually, we first began publishing as Tokyo Classifieds in 1994 and you can find back issues online at—Eds]