Tokyo has been hit by a particularly hot summer this year, and according to the Japan Meteorological Agency, this will continue well into late September. As most rented living arrangements in Japan commonly come with built in air-conditioners, that leaves many of us new to the whole concept of self control repeatedly reaching for the switch and generally suffering from withdrawal. To make things worse, Tokyo is extremely humid in summer and tends to suffer from the heat island effect in a major way.
So, what would you expect from Japan but more stuff to the rescue! Continuing the venerated Japanese tradition of wacky inventions is a product (plastic, no less) called "COOLBLAST" that is purported to have the effect of cooling you off with nothing but water and air pressure.
Unfortunately we haven't tried this ourselves so we can't vouch for the accuracy of the claims, but basically you fill this 2.5 ounce bottle with water (from the tap, a stream etc.), operate the hand pump on the bottom to build some pressure up in the container, point it at your head, push the button, and Kapow, you are officially cooled. Ok, so not something you should do indoors perhaps, but great if you are navigating the concrete jungle in Tokyo's peak summer apparent temperatures that approach 100 degrees Fahrenheit (close to 40 degrees Celsius). Just watch out for other pedestrians. COOLBLAST can be purchased through an online store for JPY2,680 (approx $25) each (sorry Japanse website only). Of course, this would be great for outdoors activities if you aren't already overloaded with a plethora of other gadgets of dubious utility.
Note: As we don't have a sample, we have not verified at this time that this is definitely a Japanese invention, though a cursory Google search didn't provide any hits in English. Leave a comment if you know more about where this is from.
Brought to you by Chris of greenz.jp