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Even more Japonalia

Good news for those of you who couldn't get enough of my constant posts about Japan (all two of you) -- a reader named "Professor Solomon" writes to tell us he also enjoys spouting off about the country, and that he's done it in book form.

Across the sea is the land of Japan. With its ancient shrines, sumo wrestlers, Zen masters, capsule hotels, Laughing Festival, fortunetelling birds, haiku masters, phantom foxes, mania for bathing, musical crickets, tea masters, Living National Treasures, Moon Viewing Night, bowing etiquette, Festival of the Dead, dream-eating Baku, samurai films, Fuji pilgrims, and robots, it is unlike anywhere else in the world. Let me tell you about it."
—Professor Solomon

At last, the unknown Japan. The traditional Japan. The real Japan.

In this erudite yet entertaining work, the Professor explores a Japan of which few of us are aware.

Better yet, it's a free download. If Japan isn't not your thing, the Professor apparently also has books on Coney Island, King Solomon, how to find lost objects (I need this one), and "how to make the most of a flying saucer experience" (not so much).

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Don't Have Space For a Christmas Tree? Decorate a Pineapple Instead
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Christmas trees aren't for everyone. Some people can't fit a fir inside their cramped abodes, while others are turned off by the expense, or by the idea of bugs hitchhiking their way inside. Fake trees are always an option, but a new trend sweeping Instagram—pineapples as mini-Christmas "trees"—might convince you to forego the forest vibe for a more tropical aesthetic.

As Thrillist reports, the pineapple-as-Christmas-tree idea appears to have originated on Pinterest before it, uh, ripened into a social media sensation. Transforming a pineapple into a Halloween “pumpkin” requires carving and tea lights, but to make the fruit festive for Christmas all one needs are lights, ornaments, swaths of garland, and any other tiny tchotchkes that remind you of the holidays. The final result is a tabletop decoration that's equal parts Blue Hawaii and Miracle on 34th Street.

In need of some decorating inspiration? Check out a variety of “Christmas tree” pineapples below.

[h/t Thrillist]

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