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Jason

Popular Christmas Item: Lap Pillow

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One popular item for holiday shoppers is the "lap pillow," with skin-coloured polyurethene calves folded under soft thighs -- a comfy cushion for napping, reading or watching television.

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The 9,429 yen ($90) pillow, which comes with one red and one black skirt, went on sale in late November and maker Trane Co Ltd says shipments have reached 3,000 in just a few weeks.

"We created this item to help tired people relax," said Makoto Igarashi, Trane's managing director.

For the ladies, the "Boyfriend's Arm Pillow" was introduced in Japan in September.

Care was taken with details such as the softness of the thighs, panty lines on the pillow's "backside" and wrinkles in the lap of the skirt so as to make the pillow look and feel as real as possible.

"We thought our main customers would be men in their 20s, but even men in their 60s are buying it," Igarashi said.

At stores, lap pillows gather crowds where people poke and pry at the foam legs.

"I think this may be good for single men, but it could cause trouble for someone who is married," said Shingo Shibata, a 27-year-old company employee browsing at a toy store which sells the pillow.

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So, who wants one? :wink:

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