A Japanese Birthday Party for the Yakuza Boss

Japanese cat in park

If there’s a rattier bar in Japan, I’ve yet to find it. But I give the place points for being somewhere that patrons can shuffle to in sweatpants and get a cup of shochu with hot water for 100 yen.

So last Saturday, I got up at noon, threw on my best Adidas sweatpants, and shuffled down to the rattiest bar in the nation for a 250-yen beer. Hey, I like to treat myself.

The yakuza boss was already there, sitting at the head of the table as usual. That’s if you can call a sheet of plywood atop plastic crates a table.

“It’s my 81st birthday,” he announced proudly.

“I know,” I said. “That’s why I dressed up.”

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Should You Visit Japan Now?

Graffiti in Japan

No, you shouldn’t.

See how easy that was? No endless scrolling or clicking through ten pages of images. So maybe you’re on the fence, wondering “Should I visit Japan?” Well, Ken Seeroi’s here to tell you, Yeah no, don’t, not just yet. So helpful, that guy.

But you’re like, “The yen’s super cheap and plus I really, really just want to visit Japan.” I feel that, but hold off a bit. Here’s why:

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Why You Shouldn’t Marry a Japanese Man Either

Japanese Canal

Nakamura-san was careful to close the windows before he left for work, in case it rained. And because break-ins are all too common in Japan, he made sure to close and lock the sliding veranda door. On his way out, he patted his pockets, checking for wallet, keys, and phone, then grabbed his briefcase and headed for the train station.

It would be four hours before a locksmith opened the door to his apartment, where he’d locked his wife out on their tiny third-floor balcony. She’d been watering small pots of basil and tomatoes. Fortunately, it wasn’t too cold, so she waited until she heard a neighbor moving about downstairs and then banged furiously on his balcony with a laundry pole. He called the locksmith who ultimately let her back in. When Nakamura-san came home, he and his wife had a brief argument about whose fault it was and then never spoke of it again. From then on, she took her phone with her when she watered the plants.

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Why You Shouldn’t Marry a Japanese Woman

Japanese tree - Japanese Rule of 7

This is the Tree Test: Look at the picture above, and if it’s not immediately obvious why you shouldn’t marry a Japanese woman, then you shouldn’t marry a Japanese woman.

The moment Erick With-a-K saw it, he proclaimed, “That’s the most Japanese thing ever.”

“Close enough,” I said, “you pass.”

Don’t worry if this makes no sense. We’ll come back to it later, until it makes even less.

Domestic Violence in Japan

But my buddy Erick’s not the guy whose Japanese wife punched him in the stomach while he was sleeping on the couch. That’s Dave.

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