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Fireworks explode across Japan to cheer up virus-weary public

38 Comments
By Hiroshi HIYAMA

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© 2020 AFP

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38 Comments
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Do the fireworks intentionally look like illustrated Covid-19?

9 ( +18 / -9 )

Nice to see someone trying to do something positive.

10 ( +23 / -13 )

"Of course I don't think the coronavirus will disappear with our fireworks. But we wanted to do this and hope something good will come out of it," he said after the event.

Good on you, mate. I wish Japanese people best of luck.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Not in our Tatsuno beach area. Nice if you got to see it.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I went out with the kids at 20:00, but ir was raining and we couldn’t see anything. In Tokyo. Anyways, nice event

5 ( +9 / -4 )

Heard about it in the news yesterday, but didnt see any where we live! I hope the folks enjoyed it!

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Oh? No broad testing, isolation and quarantine as stipulated by health professionals in the WHO. But here you go, enjoy the flickering sparks. Are we living in the twilight zone?

-10 ( +8 / -18 )

Heard it where I live, wondered what it was all about and found out later from the missus. Great idea, way better than the masks. Great logistics and coordination to pull this off, hats off to ya!

6 ( +8 / -2 )

I heard the bangs but as it was heavily clouded and raining, couldn’t see any fireworks..

Another waste of money...

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Pointless in the weather we had last night, doubt anyone saw anything and if anyone heard the bangs probably thought it was thunder, who didnt check the weather before burning this wad of money for no effect?

A much more effective outcome would have been to have selected an evening when the weather was going to cooperate, but well you know japan has never been very good with logic.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

Another waste of money...

Millions of fireworks due to be used in the cancelled summers shows had to be disposed of for safety reasons.

The companies lost money.

11 ( +14 / -3 )

My sincere appreciation to the hanabi manufactures and organizers of this "secret" event. While I was unable to see or hear any in my very rural community west of Hiroshima, friends a little farther west in the Shunan area did hear and maybe(?) saw a little bit of it.

The unselfishness of these companies, expending their supplies for the good of the public and on their own dime, is indeed a positive and welcome relief, even if only in the intent for most.

Thanks, hanabi masters and your crews, for your thoughtfulness.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

A great fireworks display just as everyone is getting back to work...

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Wallace FredToday  08:27 am JST

Oh? No broad testing, isolation and quarantine as stipulated by health professionals in the WHO. But here you go, enjoy the flickering sparks. Are we living in the twilight zone?

All of which has absolutely nothing to do with fireworks manufacturers trying to cheers people up.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Wallace FredToday 08:27 am JST

Oh? No broad testing, isolation and quarantine as stipulated by health professionals in the WHO. But here you go, enjoy the flickering sparks. Are we living in the twilight zone?

Lol. Trusting the "health professionals" in the WHO..

Are we living in the twilight zone? XD

1 ( +4 / -3 )

@Bjorn. This was nationwide, not just where you live so give them some credit. They were losing money and couldn't store their fireworks so they could only blow it up. To plan and coordinate this with all of the local fire departments, and the local authorities had to be done well in advance and was quite a logistical feat. I'm sure they planned for the weather, but one can only do so much when it's planned on a large scale. As for Japanese logic, I agree that Japan has many problem, as do many countries, but don't say that Japan as a whole is not good with logic, because you sound like you're saying that Japan as a whole are illogical. Not good, and not true.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

"Historically fireworks in Japan have been launched to pray for the eradication of plagues and to console the spirits of the deceased," Tokyo craftsman Kouhei Ogatsu."

Huh? Since when? Sounds totally contrived.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

If the displays were only 5 minutes long, and the locations were undisclosed, how do they expect more than a few people to have seen them?

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Couldn't see anything in Kawasaki but it's a nice gesture and I hope it cheered up the nation.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

@buchailldana Yep, you can say that again. I’m from the US, and I don’t think I even need to finished what I was going to say. And I shouldn’t, because as you said, nice to see something positive.

This is something very good for Japan. And like I said since I’m from the US, it makes me want to move to Japan even more. Hopefully in the next couple of years, I’ll be able to do just that, like I plan to. Because I really would wanna see stuff like this in person. You know, like how they were doing it here.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

A few booms, but visibility wasn't good due to rain.

Short, but nice diversion.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Huh? Since when? Sounds totally contrived.

Artemis@I assure you the man was spot on. The custom began in the Edo period (1733) after a cholera epidemic.

http://www.spoon-tamago.com/2020/05/28/fireworks-japan-ward-off-epidemics/

3 ( +4 / -1 )

the display was purposely short to prevent crowds from congregating.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

A fine gesture. Some year, the USA should spend the entire military budget on fireworks.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I'm sure to get a lot of negative votes, but by now I'm used to it.

If you're going to do such a display, you really need to announce where and when. And if it is supposed to be nationwide, it needs to be nationwide. A nice gesture, but for those of us who couldn't appreciate it, not worth noting. Make these local news, not national.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Didn't see or hear anything myself.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If a firework explodes in a forest, does it make a sound?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

WELL thanks to the ppl who tried to ease the stress of the ppl who suffered bcoz of the virus

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@NCIS Reruns Sounds like a propaganda piece. Note the date of a few days ago and sentences like this: "And it’s believed that the fireworks festival was intended to memorialize victims and pray for an end to the epidemic." Believed eh? No facts to back it up? No historical sources at all? Right.

Your article says " Today, May 28th, is Fireworks Day in Japan. This day in 1733, over 280 years ago, marked the beginning of Japan’s oldest fireworks festival along the Sumidagawa River.  Although it was later moved to mid-July, the festival was originally organized by Shogun Yoshimune Tokugawa as a way of warding off bad luck and epidemics." Well, I did some searches. Pages backing up claims like that had no date when the page was made. General lists of epidemics and even specifically cholera I found had nothing for Japan in 1733 or even close. One said the fireworks were for honoring the dead from poverty, but nothing about ending epidemics. It seems to me that the ruling class liked them and may have come up with nice sounding excuses to set them off, and used them to take attention away from the poverty the ruling classes caused. Bread and circuses and propaganda. The following was at least published a couple months ago and has an actual date on it.

https://matcha-jp.com/en/6129

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Absolutely pointless telling us after the event. Unless you lived right next door nobody saw them. 1 hours notice would have been enough for people to be aware, and still too short notice for anyone to plan to travel to those spots. The only people who could get there in 1 hour would be very local and minimal. But it would have given the rest of us a better chance to look our from a distance. There was no point when nobody saw these.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

They should've announced the exact timing, so at least kids can look out a window and have a little fun.

blue in greenToday 10:56 am JSTA few booms, but visibility wasn't good due to rain.

Short, but nice diversion.

Sometimes oncoming rain can cut the fireworks short. Rolling Stones shows end with fireworks. When I saw them at Ohio State University in 2015 as the show was nearing its end the clouds were thickening and were inky black and thunder was rumbling, so the fireworks went off before the last song. Just in time too, as the Stones made their traditional British bow the rain exploded and thousands of concertgoers in the stadium got soaked!

The fireworks were short but sweet, better than none at all.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I remember my wife saying something briefly about the news on Sunday night. I asked, where? No reply. I was also going to be working at that time, so it didn’t really matter to me anyways.

My point is how much of the population actually saw any of this?

Now,

If this was paid and coordinated by private companies to help ease the dark times, I applaud those companies for trying something positive.

If this was paid for and funded by tax payers money..............c’mon now, I’m sure you government politicians have wasted enough money and time doing nothing. Time to cut the crap and start making real moves and changes to help improve Japan, not mask the obvious problems.

I guess it’s better than having violent riots though.............

2020, you need to go away!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

where are my 100.000 yen?even no application received yet...what fireworks?are you...OK?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

They should've announced the exact timing, so at least kids can look out a window and have a little fun.

I guess its because they think Japanese people cannot be trusted with such information lest they congregate despite being asked not to. I find the withholding of information to be rude, insulting and completely against the most basic principles of democracy. The propaganda I am reading about this imagined historical epidemic ward certainly makes it seem like the year is 1984.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

What For? Well, I think it’s a waste, but if they think it helps in some way, fine by me.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Ah...now I understand the increased police patrols of recent days. They figured the herd might congregate.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yeaaahhh... it's nice for the artisans, and for the people who could catch a glimpse, but I have to say I'm still questioning the authorities' use of money. I think there are better uses for it, that could still make a lot of people happy, and not only lift their spirits, but actually help them out otherwise as well.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan seems to do stupid the best ,I heard the fireworks but couldn't see them.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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