You can be that crazy dude who lives under a bridge and rides a bicycle with garbage bags full of tin cans hanging off the back, but as long as you’re “Japanese,” you’re good to go. Afterwards, I go to a bar, and every week, sure as hell, someone will approach me and say, “Wow, let’s speak English together! People are massively impacted by their environment and the people around them. The place was packed full of about thirty guys and gals in dark suits all sitting alone in silence, eating and reading manga or staring at their smartphones with glazed eyes.
But Japanese racism is a whole other subject.) Now, I’m in no way saying that the majority of men and women participate in this, but the fact that the institution exists changes the social dynamic. ” Now, I may even want to, but really, who gives away what they can sell? So prostitution has turned sex in Japan into a commodity. I stayed for about an hour and a half, ate some grilled mackerel and rice and miso soup, drank an Asahi beer, and watched TV. The only person I talked with was the waitress, which is pretty typical.
Eventually I got to my own dark building and rode the elevator up.
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Marriage isn’t a great choice; it’s just the second-worst option.
For a man, it means he’s working to pay for his wife. If you chose “Absolutely freaking nothing,” then congratulations, you’re about halfway to earning a Bachelor’s in East Asian Studies.
A lot of people are apparently “just saying no” to the whole thing. For Japanese folks, it’s insanely difficult to establish friendships and connections, which is no doubt why so many Host and Hostess Bars exist, so people can at least to talk to them.
then someone will reply: You’re such a loser, since there are so many hoes. I don’t pretend to have discovered the Unified Field Theory of Japanese sexuality, but I’ll give you four factors that I think are contributing. “I have it easy,” he said, “since I work at an international company. “But Sunday’s when you come here to study English,” I pointed out. For most people, it comes down to two choices: work like mad as a single person and have a tiny apartment full of dirty clothes and half-eaten Cup Ramen containers, or get married.
People in Japan, and Tokyo in particular, work a ridiculous amount, in a way that’s hard to comprehend if you live in, say, sunny California. Japanese places are a lot worse.” “Do you ever see your wife? That way, the man goes off to work, and when he comes home after midnight, his dinner is sitting on the table covered in Saran Wrap, and there’s hot water in the tub. Shopping, ironing, cleaning, paying the bills, everything’s taken care of for him. The woman gets to do all the fun, fulfilling things like taking care of baby, grocery shopping, cleaning, and cooking meals.
Take a former student of mine, Naoko, who worked as a programmer. “I just wore the same clothes, but on Sunday I’d go home for half a day, to shower. Sometimes I’ll ask my adult students how often they see their spouses, or ask the kids when they see their fathers.
She worked—wrap your head around this—twenty hours a day. The answer is roughly on par with how often I’ve seen the Easter Bunny.
“Every day at 4 a.m.,” she said, “they’d turn off the lights and we’d sleep at our desks for four hours. I am, however, a big fan of marshmallow Peeps, so maybe it’s not as infrequent as you think.