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Posted in: Gender gaps deeply ingrained in Japanese society: U.N. official See in context


Few people really want to work like a salaryman, probably also explains why women are happier.

Exactly. Little girls grow up watching the dynamics of their parents - their dads work long hours, are never home, and are always tired, while their moms spend their days doing fun activities with their friends, going to cafes, and spending time with their children. Until Japanese society and businesses start to make work-life balances a priority, I don't blame women for opting out of that rat race in favor of a more comfortable life style.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: Court rejects damages suit over same-surname-after-marriage rule See in context

What happens when a female foreigner marries a Japanese male?

For Americans it's the same process as if you were to change your name after marriage anyway. We took our marriage certificate and translation to a social security office (we were married in Japan but moved to the US about a year later). Once that was updated, I was able to change it on my driver's license, passport, etc.

The only frustrating this was that each agency required different levels of "proof" of my marriage. Even between DMVs - one said my certificate and marriage weren't enough (even despite being accept by the social security office), while another in the next town had no issue with it all.

And funnily enough, after all the work to change my name and living with my husband's name for the past 12 years, I'm applying for dual citizenship in Italy, where women don't change their name after marriage, and I will have to officially go by my maiden name there. Can't win!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Father's story about parenting on a train highlights Japan’s hidden prejudice against male parenting See in context

EVERY parent on here will back me up on that, I guarantee it.

Here to back you up! Kids have tantrums and meltdowns. And regardless what anyone says, it has zero to do with "parenting." Screaming and crying at that age are completely normal and one of the only ways little ones know how to process stress and emotions. You can start teaching them how to control those big, unhappy feelings as they grow older, but two-year-olds aren't known for their logic and reasoning capabilities. Hell, my son is nearly 7 and I still have to remind him to use his "emotional toolbox" when he starts getting upset about things.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Posted in: Labor minister opposes banning female dress codes with high heels See in context

Maybe the biggest thing to point out here is, in this country, where there is always a reasonable chance that you will have to evacuate because of a natural disaster, forcing women to wear shoes that CLEARLY make evacuation much more difficult and dangerous goes beyond image-based sexism. It's cruel.

Exactly! Reminds me of that scene in Jurassic World where the woman is running away from a T. Rex in her heels. "Sure, it's impractical and realistically she'd die immediately, but dammit, she'll look good doing it!"

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Posted in: Stop it! Anti-groper app becomes smash hit See in context

It really is so easy to say what you would do in that situation until you're in it yourself. You're standing on the train, minding your own business. Then you feel it. You start to panic, but think "hey, it's a little crowded, maybe it wasn't intentional, no need to get upset..." But the touching continues. From simply brushing to grabbing. You freeze, wanting to scream or turn around or do something but you worry - will anyone do anything? Will anyone believe me (I mean, half the responses in this comment section are men worried about being falsely accused)? Will he retaliate and hurt me? And, especially if you're a foreigner, will anyone care? So you shut your eyes and hope it passes soon, moving away as soon as you're able.

It's not all "fight or flight," many women freeze when being sexually assaulted as a defense mechanism too. If this app actually helps women, who find they can't find the strength to open their mouths but are still looking on their phone while it's happening and can push a button, I'm all for it.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: 6-year-old girl strangled to death by mother See in context

DeadforgoodMar. 14  04:32 pm JST

Yea, of course the mother should take responsibility. I also think its fair to say that her stress could have been reduced though, if the father hadn't been coming home so late at 9:30 pm etc (probably daily). Don't really know the full story, so can't really say its his fault though either.

My husband works crazy hours and I've never been so stressed at him that I've contemplated taking it out on my children. Normal people don't do that. Whatever relationship, good or bad, the parents had has nothing to do with a parent strangling her child to death.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Posted in: Captain Marvel, a superhero with girl power to spare See in context

WakarimasenMar. 8  10:22 am JST

Superhero movies are now overdone.

Also, not sure how a fantasy heroine like this is inspiring for women in real life....

So I'm a white woman, my son is half Japanese and 6 years old (we live in the US), and he loves Star Wars and action films. Kids from a very young age internalize what is "normal" based on what they see around them. We watched the newest Ghostbusters film a few years ago and my son quickly remarked "Wait, why are there no boy Ghostbusters?" It took me by surprise because I was around his age when I saw the original Ghostbusters and it never occurred to me as little girl that I didn't see any female Ghostbusters, because all-male casts were normal.

Then we saw Rogue One a few months later. My son again was shocked to find Asian heroes. "Asian people can be jedi too???" he exclaimed excitedly (and I know they weren't technically jedi in the movie but my son was like 4 at the time). He was so happy and started copying their moves in the living room.

Representation matters. Maybe some people think it's pandering to have a black superhero or a female superhero, but it does matter. I don't want my son to grow up thinking the "norm" is a white man. It's inspiring to see both people who look like you and also who don't look like you in lots of different roles. My son's reactions to diversity on screen really opened my eyes as to why it is so important for these films to be produced.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Posted in: Californian student remains in detention 8 months after breaking lamp in Tokyo bar See in context

For those questioning how he could have fallen asleep after three beers, he apparently was jetlagged. This article doesn't make it as clear as others, but he wasn't a student in Japan he was a student in Bali and was on his way to Thailand when he decided to stop briefly in Japan. A lot of the cheaper flights from Bali to Tokyo are red eyes, so if that was his first night in town I can definitely see falling asleep after a couple of drinks.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: Marie Kondo's Netflix show has cluttered Americans abuzz See in context

Kondo’s overplaying of the Buddhism struck a chord in the US where it’s considered exotic, but in Japan it would be considered tacky.

It's actually not Buddhist in nature but Shinto. And, anecdotally, from what I've heard is that many Americans don't really understand the purpose behind "thanking" items, "waking up" books, "greeting" the house - many I've talked to thought it seemed a little hokey and new age-y.

I watched her show, and while I think people are either over hyping or completely misunderstanding what she does to the point of hatred. If you're looking to get rid of clutter and organize your home in a more efficient way, Kondo's methods (which are already common enough in Japanese manufacturing) of putting like objects together, keeping objects you use more often in easier to reach places, using boxes to separate things, etc., is very useful. I watched her show, and it gave me the inspiration I needed to organize my closet and bathroom. My kids in turn asked if they could go through their own clothing and had a lot of fun reorganizing their drawers.

She's not forcing people to get rid of their books, and she certainly isn't going to change your life if you are fine with how your home is already organized. But for those of us in the middle, who recognize the clutter and just need that little push to reorganize and reevaluate our belongings, I think she's really helpful.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Black Panther' poised to become an Oscars heavyweight See in context


I get the point, and it doesn't apply because white European people haven't been colonized, enslaved, and subjugated the way African and black people have, so the story wouldn't make any sense. This isn't a colorblind story that can just be picked up and moved to a different location.

And Killmonger didn't act like a stereotypical "gangster," he acted like a black man from Oakland. Where I live. He was no more "gangster" than Klau.

And I didn't say it deserved a ton of awards per se, but it deserves recognition and respect for being a ground breaking film for people of color and the industry. Those who feel differently can argue that, but people disparaging the film for being about race and using that against it are completely missing the point that yes, it IS about race. It's supposed to be about race. That's what makes it different than an average superhero film. And if speaking about race makes you uncomfortable, that says more about the audience than the film.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Posted in: 'Black Panther' poised to become an Oscars heavyweight See in context

Reverse colours and this movie would never have been shown.

Um, isn't that kind of the point? This is a movie about black people. The color of their skin is integral to the story.

I thought it was a great movie, and my kids are obsessed with it. My son was even Black Panther for Halloween. I love that they have non-white superheroes to look up to. I don't know what awards it deserves or not, but I'm glad it's getting recognition and that Hollywood is starting to realize that films about people of color and made by people of color have value, both cultural and economic.

And laughing at someone getting upset at "gangster like." That sounds about white....

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Posted in: Man arrested after pushing woman off train station platform See in context

@ Alex Hutchins

Japanese men are coddled and then when life doesn’t turn out as planned, they take it out on women (most of the time young women)...

This is not just a problem in Japan, men all over the world hurt and kill women because they feel entitled to something they haven't received - money, sex, etc. Just look at the "incel" attacks against women in the US and Canada.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Posted in: Vinyl Museum See in context

There are exhibits opening up all over the world like this, people want to interact with the art. Looks fun!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Posted in: SoftBank's Son says Japan is 'stupid' for not allowing ride-sharing See in context

I never had a problem with taxis in Japan. They were kind, polite, and while expensive I always felt satisfied with their service. So I agree with @ChopChop about that.

But living in San Francisco, Uber and Lyft have been a godsend. Taxi drivers here were notoriously rude, they'd go the long route to make more money, were outrageously expensive even when not trying to cheat you, and would simply refuse to let you in their car if they didn't want to go where you wanted. Now I can easily get to where I want to go, and cheaply too. Not to mention the cars are much cleaner, and the people you meet driving are depending on good reviews so they are polite.

I don't know if Son is correct in calling Japan stupid, but I do think there's a middle ground to allowing competition and more innovation to change the current system.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Posted in: A reminder of why you shouldn’t be quick to judge who’s sitting in Japan's priority train seats See in context


I needed a seat way more in the earlier months of my pregnancy when I was vomiting nearly non-stop. I can't tell you how many times I had to rush off a train and find a nearby trash can to throw up in. Just remember that next time you spitefully refuse your seat for a woman who simply "missed her monthly," she may be missing her lunch on your lap!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Posted in: Woman kills 1-year-old son; tries to kill herself See in context

Postpartum depression is real, and lasts much longer than a just a few months after birth if untreated. Considering the lack of mental health care and spousal childcare support in Japan, I'm not surprised there are incidents like this. Poor child.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Posted in: S Korea imposes new restrictions on marriages with foreigners See in context

"Korea and Japan more alike than either would ever care to admit."

Japanese women are more likely married to foreigners than Japanese men.

Nope. http://www.ari.nus.edu.sg/docs/wps/wps12_174.pdf

The table on page 5 shows the breakdown of marriages to a foreign spouse in Japan. Since around 1990, Japanese men married to foreign women have made up about 65-80% of international marriages in Japan.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Why must Tokyo’s railways engage in aural assault? See in context

Tokyo is one of the largest cities in the world, and many if not most of its residents rely on public transportation. I'm sorry, but the noise from trains has never been a nuisance.

And as far as the warnings - I know this is probably the American in me, but they could be played for legal reasons. Like when that woman spilled hot coffee on herself and successfully sued McDonalds for not warning her it was hot. Yes, most people know to watch their step and be careful, but what's to stop someone from complaining to JR they tripped and hurt themselves because there was no warning, just because they want to make a quick yen?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: The great Tokyo Michelin sham See in context

Would Paris like a little cheese with their whine?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Hornet's nest See in context

I saw this movie last night, and my husband and I both laughed out loud through most of it. Is it a brilliant masterpiece? Of course not, but it's still an entertaining movie. And it's nice to see a superhero/comic book movie that doesn't take itself so seriously.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Savoie's suit against judge dismissed in child abduction See in context

Savoie is a controlling jerk, and has no one to blame but himself for not being able to see his children.

Japanese parents abducting children is a serious issue, and there are plenty of real victims out there. It's sad that Savoie has to be their spokesman.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Tokyo salon owners sound off on current state of male style See in context

It's all about balance. Caring about your appearance is not "gay" or "feminine." But I have seen a lot of guys in Japan who were on the feminine side with their hairstyles, clothes, and even body types. I don't like super skinny guys.

But guys in the U.S.? WAY too macho! God forbid they ever wear something nice or trim their nails or be seen doing something women normally do for fear of being called gay. America's macho, cowboy attitude is too far in the other direction.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: What do you think about the quality of reality TV shows? See in context

I like reality shows that require some talent or skill of the participants, like Project Runway or Top Chef. I don't really watch American Idol, but I respect the people who win.

Shows like "Keeping up with the Kardashians" or "Real World," "The Bachelor," etc., are just utter garbage now.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Happy days See in context

And now a little something for the ladies...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Hiroshima not shy about its atomic bomb legacy See in context

Everyone is discussing war responsibility, atrocities, yada yada. Is not the goal worthy? I think the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki should be commended for helping pursue the goal of eliminating nuclear weapons. And no one can argue the fact that it was wartime, and there was massive casualties, but noone should have to suffer the inhumane effects of nuclear weapons.

Exactly. Visit Hiroshima and talk to the people who live there, and you won't see them playing victim. It's not about that - the overall theme of the museum and peace park is "It happened, it was awful - let's make sure it never happens again."

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: 'Deathly Hallows' will leave fans eager for finale See in context

Oooooh, can't wait!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: The butterfly in the subway See in context

I love Tokyo, and I agree with a lot of what the author is trying to convey. But the U.S. isn't that bleak. Sure, public transit sucks, but that's not the only thing that makes a city.

The author said it himself - he's been in Tokyo for two years. Still the honeymoon phase, perhaps. All cities have their own unique features and ills. Were the author a woman, perhaps, he may have a different tune to sing about the safety of Tokyo and its trains. I may be afraid of getting mugged in New York, but I'm also terrified of being molested and grabbed in Tokyo. I lived in Minneapolis for three years and nothing ever happened, but in Tokyo for three years and I was almost raped. Doesn't mean I still don't love Tokyo and would move back there if I had a good job, but I've seen enough of many different cities to know that no place is perfect.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Domino's Pizza Japan to pay Y2.5 mil for one hour of work in Dec See in context

It's a good idea, I think. They could just give someone 2.5 million yen in some contest, but considering the current economic situation I think it's quite clever.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Man arrested for throwing used condom at woman See in context

Guy needs help. A good whack or two might be a good start. Seems like he did have a good whack or two already.


But in all seriousness, this is just nasty. Can't believe he's gotten away with it until now.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Laugh-in See in context

I'm not the biggest Hil-dog fan, but I think she looks quite nice in this picture. I wonder what they were laughing about.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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