There’s only a month to go until Christmas, and Chii says she wants Santa to bring her more toys this year. Kumai-san can’t decide what she’d like, but she nevertheless wants to spend this Christmas like she used to enjoy them as a child, meaning eating cake at home, going to sleep while eagerly anticipating Santa, that kind of thing. Chii points out, though, that it’s a bit of a challenge now at their age to get as anxious about Santa Claus.
Kumai-san asks any children listening to the show to cover their ears for a moment. Kumai-san did believe in Santa Claus until well into elementary school, and even though she knew who it was acting as Santa each year, she just didn’t want to crush that dream of hers so she kept believing that the real Santa Claus lives somewhere out there in Finland or so.
But the cold truth of the matter is that Chii and Kumai-san will undoubtedly be spending this Christmas being busy with the Hello!Con rehearsals, so they only hope that the staff will have Christmas cake prepared for them.
The signs of winter are starting to show. Chii asks Kumai-san what to her signifies the beginning of winter. To Kumai-san, it’d be when she starts wearing sweaters, and as it so happens, both of the hosts are doing just that today. Plus, she also feels that way when seeing the lineups at clothing stores starting to include things like mufflers and outer wear.
For Chii, it’s when the city starts to look grey: everyone switches from their brightly-colored summertime clothes to grey, black or white. This is why she prefers the summer. Still, as she points out, it’s not all bad: there’s Christmas, New Year’s, illuminations, otoshidama and New Year foods.
The two talk about the preparations they take for winter which among other things include buying lots and lots of HEATTECH products. This, the both of them say, is something absolutely necessary for winter. Kumai-san is still trying to get by without using them, but Chii has already given in to the temptation. There are also HEATTECH tights out there, and Kumai-san says that if she’s wearing them it simply doesn’t matter how cold it gets outside.
Kumai-san: Bring it on, winter.
November is the season of school festivals, and while Kumai-san regrets not being able to attend nearly any of the ones were held during her high school days, she’s happy that nowadays Berryz gets invited to perform at these festivals quite often. This lets them meet more people who don’t usually come to their concerts: at the latest such performance they did, there were what Kumai-san guesses were just these little kids from the nearby neighborhood. She waved to one of them, but they got embarrassed and instantly looked away. Kumai-san thought this was really cute.
We’re a couple of days away from the release of Berryz Koubou’s final single, so Chii asks Kumai-chan what she thinks are the highlights fans should pay special attention to on these songs. To start off, Kumai-san thinks “Romance wo Katatte” isn’t very Berryz-like — in a good way. To her it feels more like the type of song they usually get as B-sides or album songs, and it’s almost like the cute songs always went to S/mileage or °C-ute instead. The music video, too, shows them in more natural makeup than usual. So Kumai-san recommends checking out the music video, too: you’ll be able to see a more fresh Berryz Koubou.
Chii was surprised to learn what the title of the song. Coming right after the more intense song titles like “1oku 3zenman Sou Diet Oukoku” and “Futsuu, Idol 1nen Yatterannai Desho!?”, she was sure the next one was going to be something equally as crazy. Still, she’s happy they got to show a new side of themselves on their very last single.
As for “Towa no Uta,” Chii points out that in its music video they got to wear checkered outfits, just like they did in their debut single. Above all, though, the two think the lyrics are amazing, and Chii found herself becoming a bit sad during the shoot when she realized it was going to be their last music video.
Chii demonstrating the Towa no Uta outfits
November 3rd is Culture Day in Japan, and Chii asks Kumai-san what the word “culture” first brings to her mind. For Kumai-san, it’d have to be art. She doesn’t visit galleries or museums that much, but she does have a favorite style of art: trick art. A while back she actually had a blast visiting a trick art museum in Yokohama. Chii thinks she might like to go, too, and Kumai-san highly recommends it.
And speaking of art, on their recent trip to France Berryz got to visit the Palace of Versailles, which the two say is the very definition of art. This obviously gave them the chance to see some world-famous paintings up-close, and Chii remembers thinking to herself “ah, so this is what art is.“
Berryz Koubou’s final concert tour just started a couple of weeks ago. Kumai-san points out that it’s actually their first autumn tour in four years, and above all it’s just been really, really fun. But she’s actually noticed her age catching up to her on this tour: sure, performing two concerts a day has always been tiring, but now it’s started to affect her in all sorts of new ways. Nowadays, performing concerts makes her whole body hurt — long gone are the days when she could dance without a care in the world like the Kenshuusei girls now.
Chii doesn’t experience any muscle pain or such, but she finds that she has to put in more time for mental preparation to be able to pull off the two performances a day — how you feel mentally also affects how you feel physically. Chii recommends that Kumai-san, too, instead of thinking “oh dear, I’ve gotten so old,” she should phrase it like “I sure have grown up!” It’s all about that positive mental attitude.
Halloween is coming up soon, and Kumai-san says she definitely wants to dress up as something this year. Chii points out that they have a Naruchika concert in Sapporo on October 31st this year, so they’re now making plans for that day. Just in the highly unlikely off-chance that not everyone managed to attend that concert, here’s what they missed:
The hot topic in Chii’s mind right now is H!P and the new friends that have joined its fold; namely, the 12th generation of Morning Musume and the 3rd generation members of S/mileage (though many of them were already members of Kenshuusei, as Kumai-san points out.)
Chii claims she kind of predicted that Makino-chan would be joining Morning Musume. She remembers seeing her back during the summer Hello!Con, constantly making eye contact with her seniors and quite simply “shining” — Chii could already tell back then that Makino was an exceptional girl. Kumai-san noticed this, too, and says she has the kind of eyes that once you look at them, it’s impossible to look away. Chii points out that it’s rare for Kumai-san to say that kind of thing about anyone.
The two have high hopes for Haga-san, too, considering her Kenshuusei past.
Next up is Ogata-san, or the “Mao-chan of H!P” as Chii puts it. The two talk about how there haven’t been that many girls in H!P so far who’ve had something they could say they were really good at, and they think especially Ogata-san’s figure skating is a first. No one in Berryz has any talent like that; some would say they played the piano or were good at swimming back when they were still kids, but these days, they have nothing. “So I really feel thankful from the bottom of my heart for having been able to join Berryz Koubou,” Chii sums up.
“And then there’s my rival: Nonaka-san.” With this girl having lived in the States, Chii says Nonaka-san is pretty much on the same level of English proficiency as her. But in all seriousness, Chii heard Nonaka-san’s self-introduction at Budokan and she thought her English was so good, she had no idea what she was even saying. She found her to be in a completely different league altogether, and thus she considers her to be a serious rival.
Berryz Koubou’s autumn concert tour is beginning soon, and Chii asks her co-host for her take on it. Kumai-san hints that this tour might have quite a lot of songs on the setlist they’ve never performed before, and like °C-ute on their recent tours, the members got to have more input as to what songs to actually include in it — in fact, they spent an entire day in a meeting where they planned for it. Chii recommends that fans make sure to prepare by listening to songs by Berryz that they’ve been neglecting to listen to lately.
Chii notes that their script says they should use this spot in the show to talk about their private lives as of late. Kumai-san isn’t sure what she’s been up to, and when asked if she’s even been practicing her cooking like she was supposed to, Kumai-san is quick to reply that she hasn’t. “There’s literally nothing going on in my life lately,” she sums up.
Chii reveals that there was recently a cockroach incident at their house. Chii tried to spray it to death immediately upon discovery in their kitchen, but it managed to escape — the worst possible outcome according to Chii. The next day her little sister went there to have something to drink and the cockroach appeared again right at her feet. She sprayed it, but somehow it managed to escape once again.
Chii’s illustration of the criminal in question
While last week Chii said that autumn is the season of good appetite, she now claims that it is also the season of sports. Thus, she asks Kumai-san if she has been exercising as of late, and Kumai-san answers that she hasn’t been doing any whatsoever. Besides dancing the closest she’s gotten to exercise has been walking up escalators, and she’s now noticed a major decline in her physical strength due to her lack of trying. This, however, has prompted her to become interested in starting up yoga. She talks about her friend having started it and how it’s supposed to have all kinds of health benefits, but then admits she hasn’t actually tried it herself as of yet.
Meanwhile, even though Chii finally bought a pair of running shoes back in September and promised she’d begin her new hobby soon, she reveals that she still hasn’t gone running — only walking. What’s more is that Chii used those shoes on only a total of two walks, and since then they’ve been sitting in their box. Again. Kumai-san is in disbelief hearing this. Chii adds even further insult to injury and reveals that one of those walks she did take wasn’t really a walk for the sake of exercise: she just went shopping in Harajuku and Shibuya while wearing them.
This is the last broadcast of September and autumn is fast approaching. And since autumn is (apparently) the season of good appetite, Chii asks Kumai-san if there’s anything she finds “gourmet” about herself. Kumai-san says she’s not good at resisting seasonal limited editions when it comes to food. Chii asks if Kumai-san’s answer has anything to do with her being gourmet or not, and points out that the staff is laughing at her answer. Kumai-san protests by saying that she’s sitting next to the most gourmet person in the world and Chii agrees that her presence does raise the bar.
To begin with, Chii always takes pictures of the delicious meals she has at restaurant so she doesn’t forget about them. Also, she used to collect business cards from restaurants as well. (She was influenced by their ex-manager who was apparently very gourmet themselves, but she got bored of it at some point.) They agree that Berryz is pretty gourmet overall as a group, but Kumai-san insists that Chii is definitely no. 1 — even when they go to restaurants together, Chii will tell Kumai-san which sauce goes best with which food. Chii is also very picky about her soy sauce: she’s very adamant about only using soy sauce that’s housed in an air-tight bottle.
Kumai-san suggests that Chii ought to get some sort of a certification. “What, like a Gourmet Master certification?“, Chii asks. She doesn’t like the idea because she figures if someone was a qualified Gourmet Master, they’d probably get fat very quickly. Chii mentions there’s actually a person on the staff of BZS1422 who’s kind of plump. Kumai-san laughs and one-ups Chii by saying there’s even a member in Berryz Koubou who suddenly gained a lot of weight, too.
“How about becoming a certified Soy Sauce Sommelier?“, Kumai-san asks.