In times of digital news, with on demand and minute by minute up to date info, many people have shunned actual newspapers. Not so, in Japan. Readership is still quite high with many Japanese still enjoy a leisurely read in the morning or afternoon. Also, a lot of companies, hospitals, and general reception areas still offer free daily papers for people to enjoy.
One of the real reasons that Japanese people still subscribe to newspapers is that they are recyclable and versatile. Check out some of the ways the Japanese use them for things other than keeping up on the news.
Not strong and sturdy containers, more the casual type you use to collect orange peels and smaller, lighter garbage. Many people have one of these close at hand in rooms where smaller garbage is in abundance, the dining room for peels and pits, the living room for tissues and wrappers, the bedroom for whatever… Take a look at the following site to help you make your own.
Wrapping fish in newspaper keeps it slightly more fresh, and keeps smells from leaving or entering the fish, ensuring you are getting a tasty treat, rather than fish that smells like onions, and milk that smells like fish.
Everyone hates washing windows. It takes time, a bunch of time, chemicals, and paper towels. Japanese people have simpler and an amazingly effective cleaning option. Dampen some newspaper, clean your windows, and then wipe them down again with dry newspaper. Try it, you may be blinded by the sparkle.
Giving your bangs a little trim? Clipping gangly fingernails? Maybe you are just cleaning out some old desk drawers, but popping some newspapers on the floor beforehand will allow you to catch little garbage. You can throw out easily, by rolling up the paper and tossing it in the bin or compost, depending on your garbage rules.
Japan can get humid, very humid and things can go bad quickly, even when put in the fridge they tend to go off faster than in other countries. Japanese people wrap a variety of veggies, such as radish, Chinese cabbage, cabbage, etc to keep them fresh and in the best condition for use. The paper keeps them dark, like in their original environment under the dirt. A lot of people also wrap veggies in the winter and just leave them on the counter to keep them in prime condition.
Japanese houses are not known for their central heating or ability to retain heat well. Fresh air kills germs, but it is also chilly as hell in winter. A lot of people put layers of newspapers under their tatami in winter to keep the chilly air out. Others still put newspapers under their carpets to keep in the heat.
Garbage rules in Japan are notoriously specific. Separate bags and bins for all manner of items. However, you can avoid a smelly kitchen and garbage box by wrapping your daily spoiled or already smelly items in the newspaper first. We wrap things like veggie peels, pickles, unwanted leftovers, etc. in the newspaper first, then toss it in the bin.
So, there you have it! No need to waste precious paper resources, reduce, reuse, and if you don’t use the above hints, recycle!