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Osaka mayor under fire for saying women dawdle at shops

By Philip Fong

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Oh my! People are starting to realize Matsui is a male chauvinist like most other elderly male politicians? You mean, the new-new-new-new-Isshin no To really is just LDP dropouts and they haven't changed? my gosh! Who'd a thunk it?! Anyway, he'll just say he was misunderstood. He's certainly not going to change his thinking at all.

0 ( +28 / -28 )

Open mouth, insert foot! Welcome to Japanese ojisan politics!

6 ( +21 / -15 )

Great idea. Only let oyajis do the shopping, and every home will be well-stocked with canned coffee, beer, and cigarettes.

39 ( +43 / -4 )

I take my time too and I am a guy. I find nothing worse than getting a bad tomato or potato in a bag, or rotten strawberries on the bottom, or a dented can. Plus I look at the dates. Takes time to grab from behind.

-8 ( +14 / -22 )

Nice to see that in times of national crisis, you can still rely on out of touch, ignorant, sexist politicians make themselves look stupid in public. Japan still number one in some things.

2 ( +17 / -15 )

chop chop women ! he has a point !

also some of the checkout ojisans and obasans .. aaahhhhhhhhh

17 ( +21 / -4 )

cracaphat: "Women have to do the shopping because many men don't know how to lol."

I'm not sure that's a lot better. If the article is about sexist remarks, it doesn't much matter if the comments are self-deprecating, they're still sexist. I don't take offense in the least, but you catch my meaning. I know you're just cracking a joke, though, unlike Matsui, who earnestly believes what he said.

3 ( +11 / -8 )

Way out of touch isnt he , he only mentioned two genders ...............

16 ( +26 / -10 )

I think both dawdle. These days, I compile a complete shopping list and go directly to each item and then get out as fast I can.

The problem is no one else is doing the same, it seems. I see couples holding hands and meandering around in my shopping arcade at a leisurely pace as if on a date. Confused elderly people by themselves spending ages fussing over items on the shelves in packed supermarkets. Housewives chatting in the aisles with their kids in tow. It's like COVID doesn't exist to most Japanese.

17 ( +19 / -2 )

When challenged by a reporter, he acknowledged his remarks might be viewed as out-of-touch, but said they were true in his family.

Right. So one woman he knows is slow and indecisive. Maybe because she faces so much criticism from his Lordship on returning home.

Stupid old goat.

6 ( +13 / -7 )

@wasao LOL!

Don't forget the cooking sake and dried squid!

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Matsui is right!

The dawdling is crazy in this highly strung country-make it a crime!

7 ( +11 / -4 )

I might get down-voted but I'm a bit tired of seeing housewives congregating inside supermarkets, gossiping, just standing there, without knowing what social distancing means.

13 ( +19 / -6 )

Shopping is therapy for some people. Take that away and .....................................

8 ( +11 / -3 )

I'm a guy and I often "dawdle" when I am deciding what to cook. For some ojisan whose idea of cooking is 3 minutes in a microwave and has no idea what fresh foods look like, of course shopping is fast.

And it's ironic that the person who heads up a city hall calls anyone else out for dawdling, when that probably describes 90% of his work life.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

Why doesn't he just say, "Make a to do list before you go shopping, go and get what you want and don't dawdle?"

It's got nothing to do with gender. Lots of men are "indecisive" and "take a long time."

Our present government, for example.

21 ( +26 / -5 )

Well,what can I say if not this "welcome to 1950"

1 ( +7 / -6 )

BertieWooster: "It's got nothing to do with gender. Lots of men are "indecisive" and "take a long time. Our present government, for example."

Zing. Well said.

Pukey: "I might get down-voted but I'm a bit tired of seeing housewives congregating inside supermarkets, gossiping, just standing there, without knowing what social distancing means."

How do you know they're housewives? And I see men doing this, too, especially at convince stores -- trying to chat up the staff or each other in front of the register while all I want is to grab a coffee or snack, have the money ready, and everything. Or the gym -- older people sitting on the machines, chatting it up, men and women alike, and the staff doing nothing about it. It's not an issue of gender. While the people may mean well and there's nothing normally wrong with socializing, there are better places to do it.

1 ( +10 / -9 )

it's not the women dawdlers that are a problem at the grocery store. it's all the retired ojisans and obasans who have nothing better to do than to shop. and then, they reach the register and i swear, they act like it's their first time paying for something. they have to check the price on the register a hundred times, and then they often lose count of the change they are trying to count out and start all over again. it's enough to make a grown man scream.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

I take my time too and I am a guy. I find nothing worse than getting a bad tomato or potato in a bag, or rotten strawberries on the bottom, or a dented can. Plus I look at the dates. Takes time to grab from behind.

You aint Japanese either!

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Really aside from deaths, sickness the politicians are going out of there way to display stupidity that a peacock would be proud to display.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

I kinda have to agree with the mayor

0 ( +9 / -9 )


1 ( +5 / -4 )

Yes, I dawdle sometimes when I shop (handbags) , and I’m indecisive too especially around shoes (heels) however always respecting a safe social distance.

Why Osaka Mayor Ichiro Matsui had to make dawdling a gender specific issue, is something only Osaka Mayor Ichiro Matsui can answer, I guess sloshed on sake.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Honestly, I go quickly through supermarkets but my wife's list slows me down. She is particular about what brands to buy while I just buy whatever is the cheapest lol

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Not PC but correct. While there are slow men and quick women when it comes to shopping, the exceptions to the rule do not negate the rule and generally men are more focused in their shopping, know what they want, go and get it and leave.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Can't agree more with him... how do i tag my wife here?

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

I now do all the shopping in our house because my wife dawdles so much that what I can do in 10 minutes takes her an hour it’s painful to watch when we do rarely go to a supermarket together. I’m not being sexist just making a statement regarding my Mrs. I’m sure she could think of something that I do too quickly.

12 ( +14 / -2 )

Well must say he is right. They block aisles and chat in queues. Just today 3 obachans needed almost 5 minutes at Costco to pay. One was a member and the other two weren't. They asked the cashier to calculate each of their purchase separately. I told them to do that in the car or at home not when other people are queued up. They were just flabbergasted at my comment

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Well, if men (just ojiisans only, really) is more decisive than women, we will not be in this mess. This crisis is the doing of indecisive ojiisans in the government and ruling party. And that's the tea.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

It's absolutely true in my family. I'm in and out like lightning and my wife's reading every damn label.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Sigh, I have to side with Osaka mayor speaks truth side of things. At least, it seems to be consistent with everything I know about my relatives.

As an aside, unfortunately, one of the lessons of the coronavirus is that one of the old hobbyhorses of the liberals, which goes like everyone is equal, everyone can be trained in the rules, so don't discriminate, blah blah blah is less true than we would like. While of course each culture / race / society has a spread inside, bunched together as a demographic the averages are not in the same place, with a corresponding change in how well the virus spreads and how hard a lockdown you have to impose (and how many people would resist even the strongest lockdown).

(This is by no means to say the Japanese are the best or whatever. As far as I can see, they are above average in that regard, especially compared to say Italy, but are there societies that do better? Yes.)

0 ( +8 / -8 )

Broccoli ¥198. Just pick one and put it in the basket. Don’t pick up and examine 4-5 of them to see if they have rabies or something.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

I do 95% of shopping and my wife 5% because of our jobs, I have time in the morning.

And every time I shop, I see women over 50 standing gossiping, I finish shopping and they are still gossiping and older women sloooowly moving down the aisles resting their weight on the trolley. And I see women digging through the items on display, while men just pick up whatever is on top. So he is being realistic. There is nothing wrong with saying what is actually happening.

4 ( +9 / -5 )


do they keep the non matching beige chinos and dark jacket near the entrance as well?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It's absolutely true in my family. I'm in and out like lightning and my wife's reading every damn label.

Well, that's why your name is SPEED ;)

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Not a bash against women, but they are more careful shoppers, so they tend to be slower. Men will just grab anything they feel like eating at the time.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Desperately needs fresh political blood.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Listen.. my wife and daughter do in two hours what I do in 15 minutes regarding shopping. In, out! That’s the way it should be done.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

Not to be ageist, but it seems to be mostly retirees who are always taking ages at the supermarket. My Japanese friends complain about it too. I understand that they're not in a hurry to go somewhere, and it's an opportunity to socialise. Normally that's fine (if a little irritating when they block the aisles just standing around), but now isn't really the time.

I don't want to be stuck in a grocery store for more than 15 minutes on a good day.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Totally right, can't stand the grand mas in the store that touch everything, block the way, and breath down your neck in the line.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

I'd say Matsui is right, but he shouldn't have said it. The difference is due to the different approaches of the two sexes to the boring business of shopping. Men make lists and buy what's on the lists and nothing else, so if they're familiar with the supermarket layout they can walk around and pick up stuff on the list very quickly. Women, on the other hand, may not have a list, so they have to walk round and look at everything they "might" need, and as has been said, will scan prices and product information more carefully. And even if they do have a list, there's always specials and little things they might have a use for, or the famy might like. So basically they're being responsible, family - centred housewife. Gve them a break, Matsui-san!

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

JP women take too long examining meats, cooked food.. looking under, over, the sides of the package.

Always grabbing food from the back of the shelf.

Avoid following a women at the cashier. Get ready to pay!

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Deliveries every week or even 2 if you can and stay in your houses please. If you really have to go shopping do it as fast as you can and do not touch stuff!

This is a really really serious viruses and will stick around for a long long time. Think of the doctors and nurses. About 2000 of them have died and 10,000 of them have gotten sick worldwide so far. Let that sink in for a minute

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Sexism, ageism, hostility against outsiders is rampant in Japan....I think I’m turning Japanesea I really think so.... does anyone know the true figures of suicidal deaths in this country vs Coronavirus deaths......?? Anybody question the trait of ‘suicidal tendency’ amongst the Kokumin psych!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Hes's right, they're so fed up being at home all day with the Whole Family, that anytime they can get away from home is a Luxury worth holding onto for as long as they can!

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Might not be politically correct, but in my experience its true. Local supermarket 90% of the buyers are female, and the ones over 50 who aren't in work mode (ie office gear, coming or going from work), do dawdle a hell of a lot.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Food shortages will be next!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Shopping lists? Not hard is it?

I'm in and out like a ducks bum, get my tinned goods such as tins of Ichiban Shibori & Classic...

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

This story appeared on the FOX news website. The comments are like, well, yikes!

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

said they were true in his family.

..."disrespectful to women and men.”

Forget that! He’s disrespectful to his family! What an embarrassment saying something like that as a public leader!

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Painfull statement to women but very true!

Though we need to understand that majority of women spend a lot of time at home and when shopping is a very crucial stress releiving moment not to mention they are also trying to get the best for their households at the most affordable price.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Matsui's real intention is to speed up people's shopping time. To avoid crowding in and out of the stores. To prevent the spread of the coronavirus by infected persons who are asymptomatic.

Men usually carry the shopping list from home. And they buy directly what's on it. To reduce the time spent in shops and supermarkets. It is a coherent public health measure.

I think the criticism comes from people on the left, just to take advantage and use it as an electoral political weapon. Instead of thinking as a measure of social distancing. Necessary to combat the Covid 19 coronavirus.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

He be right, you know.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Not PC but correct. 

Agree. :)

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Of course he is right. Trigger story. Oh wait we all have to feign shock and anger at such an outrages statement. Mid pandemic.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Well from experience around the world, I have to agree with the comments. However on my own behalf, if I go I end up buying more than what I went into the store despite going in and out and not taking as long. I only speak from experience.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

He’s just not politically correct. Some times the truth hurts. majority of woman like to shop why the majority of men don’t. Yes there are will always be exceptions to the norm, but in this case he’s correct. Like or or not. Men go and buy what they want and leave. Women seem to look for sales and something other than what’s not on a list.

3 ( +5 / -2 )


this city boy liking ur view of point. Makes me think of Kevin Wilson’s song “don’t touch your sister”.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is nothing to do with origin.

YubaruApr. 24 05:20 pm JST

I take my time too and I am a guy. I find nothing worse than getting a bad tomato or potato in a bag, or rotten strawberries on the bottom, or a dented can. Plus I look at the dates. Takes time to grab from behind.

You aint Japanese either!

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Some men and some women dawdle at shops. See how easy that is Mayor?

Sometimes I dawdle and sometimes I do not. Depends on mood, commitments, prices and how long my list is. I do most of the grocery shopping in our family. We split chores usually by how much we hate the specific item.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I'm a bloke and I like to browse..

And can never seem to make up my mind.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I doubt seriously if either use their shopping time during the Coronavirus to socialize, women have always been Conscientious

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I have done a research on this in my high school.

For the same list of shopping items....,

Working women tend to spend 46% more time when they shop in weekdays.

On weekends and holidays it is staggering 209%.

Non-working ladies tend to spend more time in weekdays than weekends.

Men are less likely to do shopping in groups while women tend to go in groups.

Women spent more time on reviewing items than buying the product.

Women tend to buy more items than what was in the shopping list originally.

Regardless of the gender, both men and women regardless to the product buy more when they are hungry.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Cont. Shoppers checking quality, prices & freshness of food purchases. Men or stop & go shoppers normally because their either single or picking up items requested by their spouse or a family member.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Of corse it's true.

My wife gives me a list and I'm in and out in 2 minutes. She seems to take 4x as long. She agrees with a laugh.

There's no need to be offended by his comments. The sad part is everybody knows this is basically true, yet feel the need to complain because he stated a gender role fact.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

People. Focus on THE NOW. There is a virus trying to kill you: FACT !!

What a stupid politician says IS NOT IMPORTANT . Your lives, the lives of family & friends ARE IMPORTANT.

Focus on THE NOW.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It's got nothing to do with gender. Lots of men are "indecisive" and "take a long time."

Yes lots of men are dawdling shoppers - but why the effort to deny what everyone knows to be true. The average woman enjoys shopping to a much greater degree than the average man. One doesn’t need a scientific study to understand that to be true. It is a generalization to be sure but not without a basis in reality. Political Correctness strikes again!

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Not sure this is a scientific breakthrough. Men have known this for years. Women enjoy looking.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

How would anyone think thats an ok thing to say. He insulted both men and women by saying that.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

is it just me or Osaka has very low qualifications for being a mayor, this guy is an idiot , the previous mayor, i use this term very loosely, is an another idiot doing TV these days.

and finally, some of commentators here are idiots too

the old boy network, me men, you women, hahaha, what a joke

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Optimist me thinks he puts foot in mouth, just in hopes people will hurry the f up.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Glitz: He insulted both men and women by saying that.

The only people insulted are those who delude themselves into believing that there are no differences between men and women. No, not every man or woman are exactly like every other man or woman. But it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to deduce that woman spend more time shopping than men. What is so wrong about pointing that out in the context of public health?

Matsui did not say there is something inherently wrong with women because they spend more time shopping. It is perplexing how so many can tie themselves into an ideological mindset that renders them incapable of acknowledging the obvious?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Nothing to do with gender, some people are slow & indecisive others are fast and clumsy, and when you mix the two together you get a WELL Balanced society.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I am also go to shopping in glossary store in Tokyo alone, as my wife makes a accurate shopping list for me in advance. So, I am able to select what we should buy quickly. It is not because of gender but role and responsibility of family and shopping plan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It is sad that we live in a society where you can't generalize such tame observations without getting eviscerated.

Men are more interested in playing contact sports than women are.

Women tend to take more time getting ready for the day.

There are exceptions to everything and everyone has an anecdotal story.

Social media is too easily offended. Spare me your virtue.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

An opinion is an opinion. Let it go. Too much can be too much.. fuels discontent and emotional respones when everyone is already in a poor mood and mistrusting each other.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

In the Society we live under one cannot even state the truth, and actually the mayor should never have said what he did. If he insist on making such statement he has to present facts and sources where he got his data from, even then wait for the attacks. Many studies have been shown that women do tend to do emotional shopping more than men, and every girl friend that I had and even my present wife does this, however some are really great bargain hunters and have coupons ready and know where the big sales are. Another aspect which many of the comments have already stated, women do the shopping here in Japan mostly, not men. My wife get big discounts by bargaining at the shops, strong lady, I'm embarrassed to even try for the bargains she gets. More power to the lady's.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I was rolling on the floor laughing. How can you be a Mayor and not know this is not aloud to be verbally said in public. This is okay at a bar, but not as an official capacity. True as it may be, Ha ha ha.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Complete opposite of his blinkered view in my house. He’s just another of too many Fred Flintstones in positions of power here.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )


not know this is not aloud to be verbally said in public


0 ( +0 / -0 )

gokai_wo_manekuApr. 24 08:35 pm JSTThis story appeared on the FOX news website. The comments are like, well, yikes!

That figures. Mr. Sleaze's media just looooves to spread the rubbish around about people. Especially if it strikes xenophobic tensions in US viewers. He's scum.

And just what the heck is the Osaka mayor thinking, anyway? Open yap, insert boot. Stupid and sexist. What a moron.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

this really cracks me up because when I went to the supermarket the other day and there was this ojisan roaming around helpless on the phone, asking a supermarket guy for help and taking ages to find stuff under his wife's instructions XDDDD

really WTF dude XDDDD Osaka idiot-in-chief get a grip

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why the divisive stereotyping? He doesn’t speak for all men or women. How can anyone in today’s world still think this way? I agree, some women take a lot of time. However, men can also take a while to decide on things to buy. Especially if it is hobby related.

Since women and men both work, shouldn’t all the responsibilities be shared?

Shouldn’t men care just as much as women about where their money goes? I guess some men are okay wasting their money on crappy products or incorrect items. I guess they could also live on fast food. No matter what, we all have to eat.

Aren’t cooking and shopping for food really life skills that all people should learn.

This is probably one of many reasons why many women prefer to be single. Too many man-children expecting their mommy, I’m sorry wife, to take care of them. It’s all about teamwork. Get with the times or don’t expect women to want to be with you.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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