|The story below is originally published on Mainichi Daily News by Mainichi Shinbun (http://mdn.mainichi.jp).|
|They admitted inventing its kinky features, or rather deliberately mistranslating them from the original gossip magazine.|
|In fact, this is far from the general Japanese' behavior or sense of worth.|
Cuddling up to creepy creatures using the espresso hold is no laughing matter 2007,09,19
Cyzo October By Ryann Connell
A couple of geek photographers have found themselves with a hit on their hands upon producing a book advising on how to handle creatures of all sorts from cuddly little bunnies to deadly poisonous snakes, according to Cyzo (October).
Toshimitsu Matsuhashi and Keisuke Kamiya produced "Ikimono no Mochikata Daizen (Everything You Need to Know About Holding Creatures)," which went on sale in August and has since moved toward achieving cult status.
Among the reasons for the book's success have been its silly cartoon pictures alongside photos of creatures, as well as for its advice like recommended the "espresso hold," which advises praying mantises be held the same way you'd hold a small cup of dark coffee handle with a thumb and forefinger if you want to avoid being bitten.
Although the book, which tells readers how they can safely pick up anything from pets like rabbits and stag or unicorn beetles to venomous snakes and scorpions, appears to be a bit of a joke, especially as it's packed with silly pictures, the book's authors say the publication is very serious.
"Even all the silly stuff is based on what you really need to do," Kamiya tells Cyzo.
"If you grab a praying mantis by the espresso hold, it can't open its pincers and you can hold onto it without fear of ever being attacked. We get into safety issues like that, the images in the book are all clear and easy to understand. If someone can pick up a creature that nobody else knows how to handle, they're going to be admired. We've produced a book that is going to make people popular."
Matsuhashi, who has been photographing all sorts of different creatures for the past decade, was the guy who came up with the idea for the book and followed on from his dream to publication.
"I've always been pretty childish myself. This, combined with a need to do a job that allowed me to have some fun, made me decide to produce a children's book," he says.
"Most kids' books tend to be a bit textbookish. So I made the book as though I was producing it for adults while messing around with the contents at the same time."
Surprisingly, Matsuhashi isn't too keen to take on the advice he offers to those who read his book.
"I hate all the animals we've mentioned. I've got a real thing for cleanliness," he tells Cyzo, with a laugh.
"Actually, some of the creatures we mention in our books, like scorpions or poisonous snakes, are really, really dangerous, so even following the stuff in the book I still wouldn't advise anyone to try and pick them up." (By Ryann Connell)
（Mainichi Japan） September 19, 2007