Japanese men share top 10 ways their weekends disappear

By Andres Oliver, RocketNews24

Monday: You drag your aching, sluggish body into work and begin the long countdown to the weekend. Tuesday: Is it really only Tuesday? This week is going to take forever. Wednesday: Halfway there. Thursday: Start making plans, we’re close. Friday: It’s finally here. The clock strikes six, and you grab your things and leg it out of there. What will you do first? The possibilities are endless.

Then Saturday rolls around and… suddenly it’s Monday again. Where did the weekend go?

It seems like more than a few adults are wondering the same thing, as revealed in a recent poll which asked 200 Japanese working males in their 20s and 30s the following question: “What are the top 10 things that leave you feeling you’ve wasted your days off?” Number five might just be too perfect for words.

Without further ado, let’s take a look at which time-sapping non-activities these 200 adults cited as the worst offenders on their days off (and if they’re working anything like this guy, those days are few and far between).

Rest Day Time Wasters: Top 10

  1. Flipping channels/watching DVDs (271 points)

  2. Surfing the web (248)

  3. Going back to sleep/naps (197)

  4. Getting lost in manga (100)

  5. Unconsciously staring off into space (96) [Do you want to talk??]

  6. Getting caught up in smartphone games (63)

  7. Playing console games (56)

  8. Downloading adult videos (45)

  9. Social media (26)

  10. Casual drinking (20)

Looking at the results, it appears that television is the biggest drain on the polled adults’ hard-earned free time. Though one might wonder about the psychological effects of prolonged exposure to endless cooking programs, television does, admittedly, provide a reliable buzz in exchange for almost no effort at all – which is exactly what many adults want after a grueling workweek.

As for the No. 5 pick… what is there to say? Whether you’re soaking in the shower or peeling oranges, sometimes your eyes suddenly glaze over and your brain goes on lunch break. Before you know it, you realize you’ve spent the last hour staring at a stretch of wallpaper. But would you ever list this as how you spent a portion of your weekend?

The same poll also went further in depth regarding some of the top time wasters, with the subjects explaining why they are unable to refrain from these activities despite their best efforts.

1. Flipping channels/watching DVDs

“If there’s something interesting on TV, I end up watching it; it’s relaxing, so I leave it playing.” (39 years old)

“Somehow time just seems to pass as I’m watching.” (31)

“It’s because there’s a backlog of stuff I recorded.” (29)

2. Surfing the web

“I have nothing to do, so I’m looking for some amusement.” (30)

“Without realizing it, I follow up on a link that caught my eye.” (35)

“There’s nothing else to do, so I get caught up in the Internet.” (29)

3. Going back to sleep/naps

“I want to be more productive, but I’m so tired I don’t have any energy.” (36)

“I have nothing to do, so there’s no reason to get up early.” (29)

“It’s in those moments that I feel the joy of time off.” (28)

4. Getting lost in manga

“If I read one volume I end up reading the rest.” (34)

  1. Unconsciously staring off into space

“I can’t decide what I should do.” (24)

Ultimately, the root cause of these adults’ wasted free time seems to be free time itself. One might even argue that inside every adult is the same former child who waited impatiently for the start of summer vacation, only to find himself in the throes of boredom two weeks later. Call it human nature.

Source: Niconico News

Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- Nine reasons why Japanese men hesitate to say “I love you” -- 65-year-old arrested for theft: “I never worked” -- “I think I love you…”: Romantic confessions from around the world

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@#5 ...well, when you grow up with such a rigid schedule that has little to no free time, is it really any surprise that they have no idea how to find something fun to get into once they have it?

Part of growing up should be all about learning how to be creative with free time and have fun.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

"My hobby is sleeping" is a really common answer when put to Japanese men.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

The question wasn't about how they spend their weekend, the question was what activities they feel they have wasted time on over the weekend. I'd say they are pretty much identical to the answers Westerners would give. Between TV, the internet and games, most people waste their time off. Games are a massive business in the US.

We all waste enormous amounts of our time. I'm wasting my time right now, in fact!

9 ( +9 / -0 )

1-9 are about exciting as watching wet paint dry. Are they just waiting for retirement to have some fun? These guys need to put some life into their years.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

I wonder what the answers would have been had the question been asked 40 years ago.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

"My hobby is sleeping" is a really common answer when put to Japanese men.


Your comment brought back memories — I had to laugh.

Many years ago when I was still fresh off the boat and initially began teaching English at companies, I would try to break the ice at the start of Monday classes with, "What did you do over the weekend?" I found that almost always the answer was, "I slept." It was a bit of a culture shock, and I soon realized that the question was not much of an ice breaker in Japan.

Back home it is sort of the opposite. The question "how was your weekend?" is an almost obligatory greeting on Monday, and everyone (or at least the 20-somethings) feel the need to outdo one another with stories of their eventful weekend.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

"My hobby is sleeping"

Isn't that everyone's?

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

These are all passive activities, which are standard for a nation of unimaginative automatons.

None of this should come as any surprise.

-4 ( +8 / -12 )

I'd like to know the top 10 things where they feel their weekend was not wasted?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

200 Japanese working males in their 20s and 30s

(tongue-in-cheek) I wonder how many guys that they actually had to talk to in trying to find 200 guys in that age group that actually work.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I have always said Japanese are hetakuso at LIVING. Most just don't seem to even contemplate having a life of some sort, this article just re-enforces what has always been obvious to me & that's the most Japanese don't have or enjoy much of a life.

My mother back home just took a month long road trip from Cda to the southern states across to Florida & back up to Quebec before returning to Ontario. Sounded AWESOME my mom knows how to ENJOY life & that single trip sadly is MORE than most Japanese will have a hope of doing in a lifetime!!

People here really need to figure out how to enjoy themselves, doesn't happen by itself!!

4 ( +8 / -4 )

“I can’t decide what I should do.”

I find that hard to believe. I can understand at times when this has occured to me, but not very often. For one reason, when I was the age of these men, I was living alone. What that meant was that on the weekends, it was time for me to do the mundane stuff like laundry, house cleaning, taking care of errands that I couldn't get taken care during the work week. Even then, I still had plenty of time to go out and hoot with the owls and have a social life. It seems that these guys probably still live at home (parents home) and don't live by themselves.

Another thing I wonder along those lines is are these family men? Do they have wives and children that they can interact with? Or are they just single men who as I stated live with their parents still. It's sad in a way but even if this is not a completely true story, it does reflect on why there is a population decline in Japan. Young men should be out trying to make their mark in the world, meeting people and doing things that will hopefully lead to them finding someone to date and marry and raise a family. It seems these guys are just sitting by and waiting for someone to tell them who to marry, while similar stories about females in the same age group complaining why they can't meet men when many have some of the same social behaviors as listed here.

People need to learn to get out and meet people, if not for dating but at least to live life and make memories.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

None of these seem to involve direct human interaction. Guess they get enough of that on the trains commuting, and in their cramped workplaces and homes. It's a little sad but understandable in some way.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Number 1 to 10: How to waste your time with completely pointless activities! Ok, Perhaps no. 2, 8, and 10 are not completely pointless and can have some higher purpose but except for that these are pitifully poor choices to spend that little bit of time you have in life.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@CGB Spender

You read the question they were asked, right?

"Learning Russian", or "Quality time with the kids" wouldn't have been appropriate answers....

2 ( +3 / -1 )


. I'd say they are pretty much identical to the answers Westerners would give. Between TV, the internet and games, most people waste their time off.

I disagree. A number of items on that list are uniquely Japanese, as they're somewhat culturally related. If it were back home, it would be things like ""trying to get my damn project car to start" or "getting blitzed" (not that I'm into that sort of thing).

The living dynamics here are completely different to anywhere else.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I would have loved seeing: "I read books" on the list... Wishful thinking.

0 ( +1 / -1 )


You too???

Read the question, folks. It's how do you "waste" your days off. Waste....

0 ( +1 / -1 )

aaahhh! Then I guess I never waste my time. You're quite right lucabrasi. I should have read the question more carefully.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This may have been asked among single men. Lately, believe it or not, when I hit the park, supermarket or amusement parks on the weekend, I see a lot of fathers with their kids with no mother in sight. Either the whole ikumen thing is true or wives are getting stronger and forcing their husbands to take their kids out.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Now we know why the birthrate is so low. Go out and find love! Find someone special to spend the weekend with!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I too was always baffled by the reply "I sleep." to the question "What do you do on the weekend ?" I told whoever I was asking that in Canada no one would say that and they were equally baffled. Even when my office staff go out for drinks all they talk about is work which makes for tedious outings. Perhaps the expression could be "No fun please, We're Japanese."

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Read the question, folks. It's how do you "waste" your days off. Waste....


Yeah we get the question, its also clear to me that the MAJORITY in Japan pretty much WASTE their free time, pretty much ALL the time.

My guess is if the question was something like:

What did you do on the weekend/holiday? That the answers would be pretty much the same, hence my comments up above at being hetakuso at living.

Too many Japanese go through life NOT LIVING, when they should be able to. That said though if you DO ENJOY yourself you can expect to be not liked much as I also find most Japanese are ""HAPPY"" when everyone around them is SUFFICIENTLY MISERABLE! Me I don't play that crap, life is short so I try to do things I enjoy as MUCH as possible, it is harder in Japan to pull off but you can live a good fruitful life here if you put your mind to it!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )


This may have been asked among single men. Lately, believe it or not, when I hit the park, supermarket or amusement parks on the weekend, I see a lot of fathers with their kids with no mother in sight. Either the whole ikumen thing is true or wives are getting stronger and forcing their husbands to take their kids out.

The problem with this dynamic is that basically fathers here play 'catch up fatherhood' on the weekends, as they're never around on weekdays. Most work over the weekend, too (golfing with clients counts). We all know who's to blame for that (ie. not them). Having a father figure home within a reasonable time is paramount in every household. This is one of the biggest issues I've seen with the family dynamic here in Japan. Child bearing is almost solely the mother's responsibility.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Guess they get enough of that on the trains commuting

Glued to their smart phones texting, playing games or reading manga. Don't think so.

I have always said Japanese are hetakuso at LIVING

A valid point. I'm surprised "I clean my room" wasn't put on the list. I've often been given that answer when discussing wekeends

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Strange. Very strange. Poor men in this country. kowaisou

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Poor men in this country. kowaisou

Do they scare you, or make you sad?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

May be I'm wrong, but haven't seen walking,hiking, talking to friends and , as for web searching, don't look only for amusement, but for informatoon 'all over the world'! It's interesting to find out about different parts of the world ! Like I' m doing now! Be happy, guys, enjoying little things !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Working at the office, just like on every other day of the week. Saturday and Sunday are for you to do the work you didn't have time to do when they had you in meetings the other 5 days.
0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't know if these activities are a "waste", it seems to me that these men do not feel that they waste away their weekend, for some maybe, since there might be someone who wishes to go on dates, visit family, etc. instead of sleeping at home, for example.

I live alone, and sometimes the week is so stressful that I spend the weekend "doing nothing", (just get up, spend my day on pajamas, reading a book (I love to read) or watching TV... but to me, that kind of "emptying my mind" and relaxing is not a waste, so I'm prepared to face the Next Monday full of energy...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

JoiceRojo, I find myself doing the same things for the same reasons you state.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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