Voices in Japan-logo

Voices in Japan

Arts & Culture Podcasts

Discover what everyday life in Japan is REALLY like! Weekly podcast episodes with half-Japanese/half-American Burke (18 years in Japan) and Ben from England (13 years in Japan), based in Hokkaido, and their guests sharing experiences on dating, marriage, working at Japanese companies, teaching at all education levels, traditions, martial arts, the struggles of life here, and the reasons why Japan is truly an amazing place to be living!

Discover what everyday life in Japan is REALLY like! Weekly podcast episodes with half-Japanese/half-American Burke (18 years in Japan) and Ben from England (13 years in Japan), based in Hokkaido, and their guests sharing experiences on dating, marriage, working at Japanese companies, teaching at all education levels, traditions, martial arts, the struggles of life here, and the reasons why Japan is truly an amazing place to be living!

Location:

Japan

Description:

Discover what everyday life in Japan is REALLY like! Weekly podcast episodes with half-Japanese/half-American Burke (18 years in Japan) and Ben from England (13 years in Japan), based in Hokkaido, and their guests sharing experiences on dating, marriage, working at Japanese companies, teaching at all education levels, traditions, martial arts, the struggles of life here, and the reasons why Japan is truly an amazing place to be living!

Language:

English


Episodes

Haunted Schools, Centenarians, and NHK's New Tricks

5/25/2022
Boom! The podcast is back for its second season, with a little surprise! The boys start off by catching up on what they've been up to, including a Friday the 13th visit to a haunted school in Bibai, Hokkaido - ranked as one of Japan's Top 10 haunted locations. They pay respect to Kane Tanaka who, until her passing last month, was the oldest living person in the world. And then a little controversy is brought to light about who actually holds the world record for being the oldest person ever....

Duration:00:45:47

Season Finale

4/12/2022
Matt joins Ben and Burke for the season finale. He shares his horrid experience of being injured on a ski slope. The guys also discuss some recent news topics which include foreign residents being stopped by the police, the Fuji Rock festival returning after a 2 year lay off, and much more. We thank everyone so much for listening to us, whether you have been following the podcast since the beginning or you have just discovered it. We will be back soon, with some changes and a bit of a...

Duration:00:58:42

What do Japanese People Think of Japanese Stereotypes?

3/29/2022
Ben's friend Miyoko joins the podcast to have a look at some stereotypes about Japanese people that many Japanese hate! Are all Japanese people polite? Are Japanese women subservient and docile? Do all Japanese students study hard? And are Japanese people hiding their true feelings? Listen to the opinions of Ben, Burke, and Miyoko on these topics and much more! Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in downtown Sapporo, walking distance from the subway station. There are variety of Japanese made...

Duration:00:50:40

How to Prepare for an Earthquake in Japan

3/22/2022
There was a powerful 7.4 magnitude earthquake, on March 16, that hit the same area as the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster. Therefore, we thought it would be a good time to talk about preparing for the next earthquake in Japan. Ben and Burke share some useful resources and phone numbers, what items to stockpile at home, how to secure your furniture, and much much more. Enjoy the show! Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in downtown Sapporo, walking distance from the subway station. There are...

Duration:00:58:33

False Truths About Japan

3/16/2022
On this episode, Ben and Burke take a look at things people thought were true about Japan and then found out weren't. Japan Today recently asked this as a question on their Facebook page, and people expressed surprise at things related to technology, food quality, treatment of foreigners and each other, and much more! Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in downtown Sapporo, walking distance from the subway station. There are variety of Japanese made craft bottled beers. A range of whiskeys and...

Duration:00:59:58

5 Things you don't know about Japan

3/1/2022
There are many things that are well-known about Japan. For example, trains are the most punctual in the world, the country has one of the highest proportions of elderly people, Japanese people are interested in your blood type, just to name a few. However, there are some things that many people are not aware about. We discuss some of these which include the number of islands in Japan, dancing laws, adult diaper sales, and much much more. Enjoy the show! Previous episodes mentioned: Zoos,...

Duration:00:58:09

Japanese Symbolic Animals

2/22/2022
Ben and Burke discuss a number of symbolic animals in Japanese culture, including butterflies ("cho-cho"), frogs ("kaeru"), cranes ("tsuru"), turtles ("kame"), cats ("neko"), and many others! To their surprise, only a portion of the symbolism was known by the Japanese people they checked with. Listen now to find out more about which animals symbolize luck, longevity, wisdom, fortune, peace, a safe return, womanhood, joy and more! Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in downtown Sapporo, walking...

Duration:00:54:56

Dark Days for French Fry Fans in Japan

2/15/2022
Back in December 2021, Macdonald’s restaurant in Japan suspended sales of all French fry orders except smalls due to a problem with its potato imports. Japan get their fries imported from the U.S. and Covid-19 has resulted in supply issues. Following this other competitors such as Freshness Burger and Mos Burger got in on the action by offering more french fries to their customers. We talk about the whole saga and also compare the variety of menus from Macdonald’s around the world. Enjoy the...

Duration:00:58:30

Nuance in the Japanese Language

1/25/2022
On this episode, Ben and Burke attempt to figure out how nuance in used in the Japanese language. Unfortunately, despite their best attempts, they might have been more confused about how words are used in Japanese by the end of the episode. Listen to hear how they struggle with understanding nuance as they try to follow the explanations in an article from Gajin Pot and another from italki! Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in downtown Sapporo, walking distance from the subway station. There...

Duration:00:51:13

Top 5 Reasons Why Married Japanese People Miss Single Life

1/18/2022
A recent survey was conducted asking 500 married Japanese men and women what they missed most about being single. Ben and Burke discuss some of the reasons why they missed single life compared to being married. Enjoy the show! Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in downtown Sapporo, walking distance from the subway station. There are variety of Japanese made craft bottled beers. A range of whiskeys and basic cocktails also available. Burgers and pub style snacks. Friendly English and Japanese...

Duration:00:54:38

Winter Survival in Japan

1/11/2022
Japan has been getting slammed with winter weather across the country since the beginning of the new year, and over two hundred people in Tokyo went to the hospital last week with injuries related to the snow and ice. Ben and Burke take a look at what it takes to survive the winter weather in Japan, with a particular focus on clothing. They also start off the show with a look back at singe-life in Japan and review a recent survey that was conducted with Japanese people about the things they...

Duration:00:50:28

The Big 2021 Japan Quiz

12/31/2021
Special Host Matt joins Ben and Burke for the annual end of year Japan quiz. Matt hits Ben and Burke with questions about events and incidents that occurred in 2021. Join in and see if you can do better than the podcast hosts. It’s the first episode since the pandemic for the guys to record in person, so we were very excited for this one, and we had a lot of laughs. We hope you enjoy the episode. Happy new year! Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in downtown Sapporo, walking distance from...

Duration:00:53:22

Japanese Christmas Over The Years

12/21/2021
It's that time of year again when expats in Japan do their best to recreate the Christmas spirit if they are stuck here for the holidays. Given that another Covid wave has started to kick up across the globe, chances are many foreigners will not be celebrating with their extended families in their home countries. Instead, some will very successfully deliver an impressive Christmas experience to their Japanese friends and family here in Nippon land, and some will fail miserably, and just be...

Duration:00:28:19

Shocking Things About Japanese Drinking Culture

12/14/2021
It’s Bonenkai season and time to go drinking with friends and co-workers. Due to Covid, last year’s end of the year party season was cancelled, but things have much improved in Japan, so small groups are heading back into the bars. If you visit Japan, you will be surprised with the drinking culture here. Ben and Burke discuss some unique aspects of drinking in Japan, such as drinking solo, drinking of public transport, bonenkai, and much much more. Enjoy the show! Sponsors: Bearfoot...

Duration:00:49:15

Is Japan an Expensive Country?

12/10/2021
On this episode, Ben and Burke take a close look at whether or not living expenses in Japan are higher than in other countries. Japan certainly seems to have a reputation of being an expensive country, and in one of the articles the guys look at, Americans say that they were surprised at how much more it costs to live in Japan compared to the US. So what costs are higher in Japan, and do the guys agree with the opinion that it costs more to live in Japan compared to the US and UK? Listen to...

Duration:00:47:37

How the Japanese Find Legal Loopholes

11/24/2021
Why in a country where gambling and prostitution is illegal will you often see horse racing events on TV, or bright pink fluorescent lights offering “love parlours”? The Japanese are notorious for finding loopholes to avoid breaking any laws, and Ben and Burke do a deep dive into how some industries manage this. Previous Episodes mentioned: Sex establishments in japan (with Japanese Comedian Meshida) Difficulty Finding a Life Partner (with Toshi) Sponsors: Bearfoot Bar Located in...

Duration:00:50:19

2021 Nominations for New Words and Buzzwords in Japan

11/16/2021
As the year 2021 winds down, nominations have been released in Japan for newly coined expressions and trendy slang words from various sources. Ben and Burke review some of the top nominations. While they recognize some of the words related to popular TV shows and social issues, they were seeing many of them for the first time, such as slang words related to Olympic skateboarding events, trendy songs and games for young people, and of course, the novel coronavirus. Enjoy the show! - TimeOut...

Duration:00:49:50

Horrific (ish) Crimes Committed in Japan

11/10/2021
Following the horrific incident in Tokyo on Halloween night, when a guy dressed up as the joker, Batman's nemesis, attacked people with a knife and set alight a fire in a subway, Ben thought it would be a good opportunity to discuss some notable crimes that have happened in Japan. It's kind of a bleak topic, but we try to keep it light by also including some funny copycat stories and pranks too. We talk about the infamous Tokyo subway Saren gas attack in 1995, a halloween prank that happened...

Duration:00:43:26

Strange Laws in Japan

10/26/2021
It's always best to know some of the local customs and laws if you are traveling or moving to another country. But what about laws that are so strange you wonder if they can actually be true or are ever enforced? With Japan now introducing new guidelines for residents to enjoy going out to restaurants and bars in cities following a dramatic drop in COVID-19 case numbers nationwide, Ben and Burke decided to look at some of the country's strangest laws related to marriage, divorce, childbirth,...

Duration:00:47:48

6 Things you Should Know When Dining Out in Japan

10/19/2021
October 14 was the day that restrictions were lifted in restaurants and bars, so people can finally go out to eat and get lashed again !No more drinking until 7pm and going home at 9 o clock. Hoooray! But, you still gotta wear a mask! When going to restaurants in Japan, you will come across some interesting concepts that you probably won't see anywhere else. so on today's show Burke and I talk about some useful things you should know when eating out in Japan. We talk about Food samples,...

Duration:00:47:37