Mamederumon, the Magic Bean of Japan!!

Boingboing points out a BBC story on a magical new product from Japan. The BBC article doesn’t say the half of it. Here’s a full translation of the original product site.
Note that the name Mamederumon is made up, but translated literally means, ‘thing which sprouts from a bean’

The bean with a message in it is being born!

The egg of Mamederumon!
From an egg a plant is born!
Exciting and thrilling!
The introduction of the egg!

Simply water the egg, and after a few hours have passes the shell will split by itself.

A bean with a message inscribed on it will sprout from the egg.

Then if you just take care of it, something good may happen.

Plans to go on sale from late February for ¥798 (¥760 with tax).

Magic beans

The story of Mamederumon
Once upon a time there was a land called ‘Mamederumon.’ In this land there dwelt a peculiar hen. The eggs laid by the hen of Mamederumon were rather large, and from within would sprout a large bean. On this bean a message was inscribed, and if cherished and cared it would grow rapidly in size, and the person who raised it would likewise be filled with vigorous energy.

NY Post

The New York post, bastion of fine journalism

A Tennessee preacher and his sisters got into a brawl after the women broke a church rule and wore pants to services.

Reba Storey said that when she and her sister walked into the Assemblies of Jesus Church in Bristol, their brother, the Rev. Clarence Love, told them, “You’re not wearing pants in my church, you demon.”

Storey replied, “I’m so glad I serve a God who can work through my pants.”

They all faced assault charges, but Judge Bill Watson tossed the case, ruling, “This is the most ridiculous case I have ever seen in the court system.”


While most of the paper is probably best used as toilet paper, their NYPD police blotter is required reading.

Police smashed a gambling ring and arrested a bookmaker at an East Flatbush nail salon, authorities said yesterday.

Cops swooped down on the nail salon at Clarkson Avenue and East 51st Street about 12:40 p.m. Thursday.

Police arrested Jean Develus, 67, after allegedly catching him taking bets over the phone and recording them on betting slips.

Cops also confiscated a slot machine, $232 in cash, betting slips and a calculator. Develus was charged with promoting gambling, possession of gambling records and possession of a gambling device

Oh my god, a calculator. I better be careful, I think I may have a spreadsheet program installed on here.

Crazy Teddy Bears

SHELBURNE, Vt., Jan. 20 –

The Vermont Teddy Bear Company believed it had a winner of a Valentine gift: its “Crazy for You” teddy bear, a cuddly bundle of fur – with paws restrained by a straitjacket and the outfit accompanied by commitment papers.

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Crazy For You

While the straightjacket bear may be tacky, it could be worse- they could be selling this Bae Yong Jun (Yong-Sama) bear.


Fantasy Craig’s List

Looking at the job listing in the New York Craig’s list, I happened to spot this ad and this one next to each other and just for a second I thought that it was a single item advertising for something like this:

We are looking for a responsible, caring, flexible and intelligent person who drives, speaks English well, loves children and animals and is interested in helping to manage an elite, established and elegant Fetish Exploration/Roleplay studio in Upscale Dungeon in Midtown Manhattan. The position will require roughly 75% cleaning and laundry (some cooking and shopping), and 25% child and dog care. We have three school-age daughters who will need Power-Exchange and BDSM several days a week, and some driving to activities and play dates.
We will provide training for the right person. No experience reqired other than some basic knowledge of S/M and a willingness to learn.

North Korea offers free email on the Web-new competition for Gmail?

I’ve known for some time that North Korea aka DPRK(Democractic People’s Republic of Korea) had a basic yet wildly entertaining newswire online at, but after visiting the site again today after a long absence I was pleased to see that they now have much more to offer. According to an undated but presumably recent press release, “The Korea Computer Centre (KCC), the nation’s software hub and local network centre, launched home page Naenara from June Juche 93 (2004).” Juche, incidentally is the name of North Korea’s official state philosophy of self-reliance, propagated by the now-dead but still legally head-of state Kim Il Song and now continued by his gluttonous son Kim Jong Il. Similarly to the way that the year in official dates in Japan is based on the reign of the current emperor (2004 is Heisei year 16, meaning the 16th year of the current emperor), Juche is used as the year label in the DPRK, which Juche year 1 being the year of Kim Il Song’s birth. Back to the main topic; North Korea’s new web presence.
According to their FAQ:


WWW.KCCKP.NET is the biggest Internet site in DPRK that operates as a base of information communication.
It provides useful information concerning whole field of politics, economy and culture of DPRK. North-south relationship has opened up a new stage of development after the historical declaration of Jun.15 Joint Statement attracting the world attention to the Korea’s reunification. Multilateral international relationship including Korea-Russian, Korea-America and Korea-Japan relationship is the focus of the world people’s attention. The reality requires that the world people have a quicker and correct understanding of Korea in order to strengthen the solidarity.

What kind of information is available?
The visitors to our site can gather deep and wide information about Korea. First of all it is possible to know the clear and consistent point of view of DPRK on the current international problems. And it will be helpful for you to know the real situation of Korea.
Membership and information service

Do I need to gain membership?
Of course you may not have a membership. You can browse many information without membership. But it is recommended that you gain a membership in order to enjoy advantage in using our website.

What additional information service is available?

You’ll have your own mail account and make a full use of convenient “Naenara” web mail service. Users can be provided with news and information in concern through “Naenara” e-mail.

How is the user information protected?
The security of user information is fully guaranteed. “Naenara” website regards it as its prime mission to protect privacy. Naenara website has built various security environment and is upgrading it continuously. It uses SSL. The 24-hour monitoring system is on alert to protect the site from hacking and viruses.

tive, but didn’t answer the one question I wanted to know: with a new free email service run according to Kim Jong Il’s interpretation of Stalin’s hard-line communist doctrine, do the capitalist imperialists of Hotmail, Yahoo or Gmail have any chance of surviving? Obviously I had to try their email service and make my own assessment. The registration is fairly typical for a web site. I asked my girlfriend to look at the registration and compare the Korean and English versions. She said all of the questions are the same, but the Korean version is extraordinarily polite, actually using the Korean version of the Japanese word ‘sensei’ (which everyone should remember from Karate Kid.) They ask for your real name, a user ID and password with optional hint question, sex, birthday, citizenship and language. They also have optional fields for current email address, telephone numbers, occupation and ‘What do you think of our site?’ Now, it’s common for sites that have a password hint question to give you a list of predefined questions to choose from. is no exception. The choices are: ‘The name of your best friend is…’ ‘The scenary I love most is…’ (type in original) ‘My favorite movie star is…’ “How would Korea change after reunification?’ ‘What will you do when Korea is reunified?’ ‘My favorite movie is…’ By allowing people to choose questions either based on the dream of a unified Korea or Kim Jong Il’s Hollywood film obsession, I think all users will be able to find one that will stick in their head well.

Under the language pulldown menu they have choices for English, Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Spanish, French and Arabic which probably does a good job of covering over 95% of the people on this planet who have a computer, but the country field is a bit strange. First of all, the list of nations in the pulldown menu is in an order that I would have to describe as completely random if Korea were not the first entry, and will therefore have to describe as almost random, there are a couple of surprises in the list. Now, there is nothing strange about them listing only a single ‘Korea’ instead of ‘Republic of Korea’ and ‘Democratic People’s Republic of Korea,’ but I was completely astonished to see that Taiwan is a possible country of citizenship! How can little North Korea’s official government site contain such a slap in the face of the closest thing they have to a sympathetic ally? Luckily, even as a ‘US Imperialist,’ to quote from the news section of the site, I was allowed to register with no greater hassle than finding my countries name in a non-alphabetized list.

I was now the proud owner of the email address! I opened my gmail account and fired off a quick message to my new account so I could see how their interface stacks up, but I ran into a bit of a brick wall when I discovered that the menu-bar item for ‘e-Mail’ does not in fact actually link to anything. After checking around a bit, I realized that the site was full of links which do nothing but open a Javascript application pop-up window with the message ‘Please Wait!’ Sadly, it doesn’t look like I’ll be able to use my North Korean communist email account today. I sent them an email, and although I have lost some confidence in their ability to compete with gmail, I can at least take comfort in the message on the contact information page, ‘You’ll be answered within 24 hours. Kind service will be waiting for you.

Iranian woman ‘gives birth to frog’

An Iranian newspaper has reported the controversial story of a woman who claims to have given birth to a frog.

The Iranian daily Etemaad says the creature is believed to have grown from larva to an adult frog inside her body.

While it is unclear how this could have happened, the paper carries quotes from medical experts who say there are human characteristics to the animal.

It has been speculated that the woman, who has not been named, unknowingly picked up the larva while she was swimming in a dirty pool.

The woman, from the south-eastern city of Iranshahr, is a mother of two children.

The “so-called frog”, as the newspaper puts it, has yet to undergo precise genetic and anatomic tests.

But it quotes clinical biology expert Dr Aminifard as saying: “The similarities are in appearance, the shape of the fingers and the size and shape of the tongue.”

Medical history recounts stories of people who believed they had frogs – or even lizards or snakes – living and growing in their bodies.

One of the most famous was the 17th Century case of Catharina Geisslerin, known as “the toad-vomiting woman” of Germany.

When she died in 1662 doctors are said to have performed an autopsy, but found no evidence animals had ever lived inside her body.

Mourning The Patriotic Chickens

Mourners honor chickens killed in wake of bird-flu outbreak

Dressed in a black suit and tie, a man asked a roomful of mourners to bow their heads. For a minute, they all stood and faced the brightly lit altar in silence.

On a stage, piled in a pyramid and surrounded by white daisies and lilies, sat the dead — dozens of eggs in clear, plastic cartons.

Having been arranged by the agriculture ministry and poultry industry officials, this solemn sendoff Wednesday at a Tokyo hotel honored hundreds of thousands of chickens slaughtered since bird flu was discovered here in January.

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