I had never heard of Aggretsuko before, but then I have been away from Japan for some years now.
I am impressed.
I was sorry this morning yo read that Mizuki Shigeru has passed away. When I lived in Japan, I enjoyed his manga and some of his children's animation for the Ge GE GE no Kitaro series. His manga account of his time serving with the Imperial Army was quite grim.
Today I read an interesting article on Tokyo's growing number of abandoned homes, though it's a problem everywhere in Japan. Every city I lived in or passed through during my life in Japan had vacant homes, or homes so overgrown with vines that they surely were.
Not uncommonly I would watch a TV program about an island of fisherfolk where the youngest person was in their 40s. I would read about schools closing, because there were no longer enough children to justify the expense of an elementary school, which forced parents to send their children to boarding schools or move to other more populous locations. Junior colleges and four-year colleges were closing because there were no longer enough students; the good colleges maintain their capacities at the expense of the lesser colleges, with the result that the better colleges' students' quality begins to drop.
One thing I wonder is whether this problem might encourage Japan to loosen its property ownership laws. As I understood it, only foreigners married to Japanese nationals or foreigners with residency right (e.g., a work visa as I had) can buy Japanese property. I briefly considered doing so in both Tokushima and Tokyo, but I never did.
We're it possible, I would love to own a bit of land in Tokushima Prefecture. Indeed, I would be most interested in areas that are already probably rather inexpensive.
The other day I found that a fellow ECE 362 student lived in Tokushima, Japan, in 1990. His father was there on sabbatical at Tokushima University's medical school. Since my classmate was only 11, his memory is not the freshest but there were places we both knew: I lived there from October 1999 to March 2006. It was my favorite place to live and work in Japan.
While reading Japanese news today, I came across an article about Mr. Nakamura sharing the Nobel in physics for his development of the blue LED. He did that while working at Nichiya Kagaku in Anan City, Tokushima. He was an inspiration to some of my engineering students at 徳島大学, The University of Tokushima.
Smithsonian magazine has a very interesting article about how American cultural products are being reborn and improved in Japan, often by people with limited direct experience of life in the US. That is probably beneficial, because they might take to interpreting things in the "American" way, rather than as they see them.
An elderly Japanese man is suing NHK for using too many foreign words. He wrote NHK about the matter and his concern that Japan is becoming Americanized, but they didn't reply, so he filed suit.
While I doubt the suit will go anywhere, it is interesting. The question of identity is one that came up occasionally among Japanese when I lived there.
While I lived in Japan, Japanese friends often told me Mt. Fuji had been repeatedly rejected for UNESCO World Heritage status because it was covered with litter from all the people who home to the summit. Many of them felt this was a national embarrassment.
The good news is that Mt. Fuji has finally been approved.