Hello Kitty brand still going strong with the new glitter bike

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I am not a big Hello Kitty fan, at all, but if you are, you should think about trading in your wheels for this bicycle, found on gruntzooki’s Flickr stream. What better way to show your dedicated fandom than to go out on the town with this very flashy ride?

It’s really amazing how immortal this Sanrio franchise is. Did you know that the first Hello Kitty product ever was a vinyl coin purse made over 35 years ago?

Flickr via 3yen

Taiwan’s Hello Kitty-themed hospital

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At the world’s first Hello Kitty-themed maternity hospital in Yuanlin, Taiwan, patients will be bombarded with images of the mouthless cat stamped onto everything from nurses to birth certificates. The Huasheng clinic was built in 2006 with a capacity of 30 beds, and its Kitty theme has been officially approved by Sanrio. Hospital director Tsai Tsung-chi told Reuters his reasoning behind this madness:

I wish that everyone who comes here, mothers who suffer while giving birth and children who suffer from an illness, can get medical care while seeing these kitties and bring a smile to their faces, helping forget about discomfort and recover faster.

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Hello Kitty alarm clock compact wakes you up with annoying Kitty-speak

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I am so sick of Hello Kitty stuff, but this one actually promises to be useful—it’s a folding mirror-meets-portable clock shaped like the cat’s head. It’s almost as small as a business card, so it’ll easily fit your purse and doubles as a portable mirror and clock. And for those of you who want to use it as an alarm clock, you can choose from three different Kitty-ish phrases.

"Hi! I’m Kitty. You still sleeping? If you’re a sleepyhead Kitty will get mad!"

"Good morning! It’s Kitty’s wake up call! Wake up wake up!"

"Yawn, good morning. Kitty is sleepy too, but let’s try to wake up! Yoisho! Yoisho!"

All equally annoying enough that you will no doubt wake up and smash her face to bits.

Link (Japanese)

Hello Kitty-branded roomba

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This may be the closest you’ll ever get to having a real live Hello Kitty running around your living room.It’s a Kitty-branded Roomba. It’s the first branded self-maneuvering vacuum ever made by iRobot. About $800, and you can get it either on the iRobot Japan web site or directly from Sanrio. Sweet! (?) 

Link (Japanese)

Hello Kitty Scale Tracks Diet Results

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Worried about your weight and obsessed with Hello Kitty at the same time? In September, Toshiba will release this Hello Kitty-themed scale. It’s bright red, and it comes with a cute little handheld panel that stores data over time and tells you how fat you are. You can connect to the computer via USB and it’ll display all your results in a nice little chart with Hello Kitty as your guide.

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Cherinacherine is the New Hello Kitty

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Sick of Hello Kitty yet? Sanrio’s coming out with a new character series that looks just like the famous 2D kitty. They’re called Cherinacherine, and they’re furry fairy friends who live in a cherry forest. Sanrio’s launching the brand with plush toys, bags, and stationary kits. Stay tuned for Cherinacherine cell phone straps and other cute, pink gadgetary goods.

Link

Hello Kitty Gear for Dudes!

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I’m serious. Sanrio Co. is coming out with a brand new men’s line this winter, featuring manly products like the ones above. Sure, a cuddly kitty with a ribbon is manly….as long as it’s printed on a black shirt or its mouthless face is obscured with bubble letters. I’m sure Sanrio, being the marketing geniuses they are, did their research and there’s a huge demand for this stuff. Just not among any of the dudes I know.

Link

Customizable Hello Kitty Crackers

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Got something important to say? Why not say it on a heart-shaped cracker with Hello Kitty on it? Sanrio’s online shop is now offering these customizable cookies for special occasions—weddings, birthdays, Valentine’s Day…You can write your message of choice using up to 14 characters, pick from 5 different Kitty designs, and finally, select your flavor—soy sauce or shrimp.

Product page (Thanks, Adora!)

USB Hello Kitty Aquarium

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You know you always wanted a swimming Hello Kitty fish tank next to your desk. A new series of Hello Kitty USB gear includes this tacky pink thing, as well as a cuddly pink USB-heated blanket with the beloved cat’s giant face on it, USB-heated slippers with the beloved cat’s giant face on it, and a USB desk cleaner with, yep, you guessed it.

Not my cup of tea, but I thought I’d put it here just in case you’ve always wanted a Hello Kitty office space. This blog post is bringing you several steps closer to fulfilling your dreams. Don’t forget to get the palm tree, too.

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Golden Hello Kitty Cards Costs $5K

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Are you a serious hardcore Hello Kitty fan? I’m not. But if you are, and if you have $5K you want to spend on the ultimate Kitty collector’s item, you can get these solid gold playing cards starting October 3 via Sanrio’s online store. They’re pressed to 7 microns with Mitsubishi Materials’ precision rolling technology, etched with royal mouthless feline kings and queens and jacks, and then sealed with a protective laminate. Crazy! But then again, after seeing the Hello Kitty Wedding Video, I don’t put anything past the hardcore fans. I mean, imagine how much THAT cost.

Link

Will You Marry Me, Hello Kitty?

Wow, this is embarrassing. I’ve heard of Hello Kitty weddings but this is the first time I’ve actually virtually attended one. How did the bride get the groom to agree to this? This is one of the biggest mysteries in my life to date.

(Thanks, Jason!)

Hello Kitty Used to Embarass Naughty Thai Policemen

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The Thai police force instituted a policy this week that made me realize that mouthless pop culture icon Hello Kitty is actually an effective law enforcement tool. From now on, naughty police officers—those who are late for duty, who get in fights with other officers, or who park illegally—are forced to wear big pink armbands with this Kitty on them. The fear of being humiliated is supposed to bar these kinds of offenses from happening in the first place.

I don’t know much about Thailand—is it really the kind of macho society where men would be really embarrassed to be wearing a Hello Kitty armband? In Japan, I feel like some men might even choose to have Kitty on their arms. Anyway, Kitty isn’t that much cuter than Peepo-kun, the cartoony Japanese police mascot.

Link (Thanks, Felicity!)

Hello Kitty Air Filter

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Just when you think you’ve had enough of this damn mouthless kitty (for the 100th time), they come out with yet another annoyingly kitschy yet actually quite practical Hello Kitty product. This one, coming out at the end of this month, is a portable air filter. It works the same way as those sleek, silver, super expensive air filters they sell at Sharper Image, using negative ions. It comes with straps so you can put it on the seat of a car or in a baby’s crib. That is, if you really want your baby to be constantly exposed to Kitty.

Sanrio Corp [via Impress Watch (Japanese)]

The Grumpy Hello Kitty Donut Man

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This man is scary-looking, and very grumpy, and very serious. But his sole job tonight is to sell little Doraemon and Hello Kitty-shaped donuts at a local holiday festival. You should see him flip them over in that little baking machine of his. He’s very professional about it. Even though he didn’t say a word to me as I bought a bag of 30 Kittys for 500 yen, deep inside I think he’s a softie. When I asked him if I could take pictures, he grunted yes. Thanks sweet man!

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Hello Kitty: too hot to handle

You’re looking at the Hello Kitty Hot Hot Friend, which triggered two enormous recalls when it started to spontaneously combust in homes all over the country. Several kids and Kitty fetishists suffered mild to severe burns when attempting to extract their reheatable furry friends from the microwave. As we speak, thousands of hot kitties are being shipped back to Takara Tomy headquarters by angry mothers whose kids (and, in some cases, hubbies) were affected in more than one way by the realization that this seemingly benign feline almost tore their arms off.

And you thought exploding laptops and li-ion battery recalls were bad. I mean, we’re talking serious emotional damage here.

(Recall notice in Japanese found here.)