The other day the daily email from buy.com included an ad for a Japanese Shopping site called Rakuten – “Now Shipping to the USA” – so I decided to check it out. It is apparently one of the biggest shopping sites in Japan, almost like a Japanese Amazon.com, but with a heavy bent towards kitsch. Unfortunately, unlike the amazing Japanese Gadget site dealextreme.com which offers free shipping to the USA, the shipping to the USA from Rakuten looks pretty cost prohibitive right now, but the poorly translated product descriptions are wonderfully entertaining and worth a look.

Some are just the somewhat cliche awkward English translations (sometimes referred to as “Engrish”), like the text on this wonderful Asimo Costume which I wish I could afford to buy:

Robottoasobo costume
Product Description ?
The newest robot costume design.
ASIMO ASIMO can also be used for imitation.

* The one who is not compatible.
* Please read the instructions available.
[Size]
To 180cm tall. Adult
[Materials]
Urethane, leather, polyurethane, PVC, use film
* After use, I highly recommend I use deodorant.
* You can not wash.
The set includes ?
Mind, body parts back, hands, gloves, feet

Some others though enter into a whole different realm of surreal beauty, like product haiku’s or love poems.

The title on the product page for a basic iPod sock is
“Like a rice cake! Whoops stretched Gyu cover Pitatto”

Check out this wonderful description / poetry:

ipod while carrying in a bag, against various things,
Imperceptibly that I’ve hurt for?
At that time, it is useful to have a cover too.

mochi is made up of a soft knit fabric has stretch.
Pita Innovation cover stretches Gyu ?.
ipod protection against scratches and shock.

The body, so that a snug fit,
Unchanged in size but covered.
When carrying, I am happy that the bulky!

And, ipod besides the variety of usage.
Compact and vulnerable part of the LCD cover and even cell phones.
Inorganic electronic devices, is surrounded knit, friendly atmosphere.
Watch and removed, ? also soaking in the small items into

The perfect gift item!
Packages like the sweets, there is impact
Some people were gifts will surely surprised me.

In all color 8color!
Bibittokara a bright strawberries.
I hesitate because there are a lot of tea!
Ipod usual, but by changing the color of the cover, it becomes a different color.
ipod will not hesitate to get a new one but not,
If you cover, you can enjoy lots of color.

Even with friends and lovers and matching different colors good!
Oke covered in it,
“Which one do it, she’ll not know!”
No more of them.
I may use both the mood of the day!

In addition, ipod or mobile phone, and each item
Once you have a different color cover,
Obviously useful even when removed from the bag!

Does introduce one color.
Your favorites, please find it.

“Even with friends and lovers and matching different colors good!”  yes,  indeed.

With over 17 million products in their catalog, it could keep you amused for a long time.