Kobayashi downs 68.5 hot dogs to kick off new contest
News On Japan via Japan Times -- Jul 06
Even though he no longer competes at Nathan's Hot Dogs on Coney Island, Japanese eating champ Takeru Kobayashi won another Fourth of July eating contest by choking down 68.5 dogs and buns in 10 minutes - 0.5 more than rival Joey "Jaws" Chestnut ate at Nathan's the same day.
At the inaugural Crif Dogs Classic, held Wednesday at Crif Dogs in Brooklyn, the six-time Nathan's champ easily beat 12 other competitors by downing 31 more hot dogs than Tom Gilbert, who took second place.
"Hot dog buns here were stiffer than those at Nathan's, so I had a bit of trouble," Kobayashi, 34, said. "But I thought I would take my stomach to the limit."
In 2010, Kobayashi was banned from participating in the Nathan's contest as part of a labor dispute with Major League Eating, which organizes the event. So last year, the man known as "the Tsunami" held an unofficial contest on a rooftop on ritzy Fifth Avenue, chowing down near a giant plasma TV that was airing the official competition live.
The number of people who committed suicide in Japan in 2012 was 27,858, dropping below 30,000 for the first time in 15 years, the Cabinet Office said in a white paper on Tuesday. The figure was 2,800 fewer than in 2011. (Japan Today )
A collection of materials related to a 17th century mission sent by a Japanese feudal lord to Europe and the world's oldest autographic diary left 10 centuries ago by a Japanese regent have been selected for the UNESCO Memory of the World registry, the Japanese education ministry said Wednesday. (Global Post )
Almost 1,500 people were transported to hospitals by ambulance due to heatstroke last week, up sharply from 942 in the preceding week, the Fire and Disaster Management Agency said Tuesday. (Japan Times )
Among about 200,000 traffic signals nationwide, 16 percent are being used beyond the end of the expected lifetime of their electrical systems and some have even toppled over due to age, according to the National Police Agency. (Yomiuri )
In May, Akira Ikoma, the editor of a guide to men's entertainment called Ore no Tabi (My Journey), said that "Abenomics" had caused a spike in prices at high-end soapland bathhouses in Tokyo. However, the same editor tells Shukan Post (June 28) that the initiative is not impacting the low-end market in the same way. (Tokyo Reporter )