Plenty of lines, but nothing to say:
- I spotted one of my old Tamachi students, Natsuki, at the 7-11 near Heiwajima Station. I almost didn’t recognize her, but she was my cashier. The problem: She had completely forgotten me. Nothing I said jogged her memory, though she did at least believe that I had been her teacher. I’ve always said that at least 95% of the people who meet me remember me forever, while the remainder forget me immediately after our association. Looks like Natsuki falls into the latter category.
- The company’s closing earlier for the new year in 2016, meaning that this time around, I’ll have nine days off. Due to my regular days off falling immediately after the break, it was actually to be eleven days off, but the school closest to my place needed someone on the tenth day, so I agreed to work. The plan is to catch up on sleep and spend very little money.
Merchandising in Japan is a powerful force, with a much stronger presence overall than in the States. You can buy licensed goods in retail stores, try for one kind of exclusives in a game center crane machine, or take a chance on a different set of exclusives in a kuji. Even movie theaters have their own exclusive merchandise, and in true Japanese form, the wearable/replica items tend to sell out almost immediately.
For example, I couldn’t get anything but a simple booklet for the movie 君の名は。because the movie had been so popular and I waited too long to go. The same applied for Fantastic Beasts; the replica of Newt Scamander’s scarf was quickly gone, almost certainly due to low supply. Over the next week, I called something like fifteen theaters until I found one all the way in Yokohama that had one scarf left. It was a little bit of an adventure, going deep into unexplored Kanagawa, requiring a platform change, a station change, and a modest walk.
The good news is that the theater in question doesn’t seem to do much merchandise business, meaning I can try them first it I ever lose out on something I want; for example, they actually had a small measure of Kimi no Na ha stuff left over (though nothing I wanted) in addition to the last remaining scarf.
The best news, though, is that I now own that scarf.
Japan and America are both first-world countries with ample freedom for everyone. However, Japan enjoys one sort of freedom I find I sometimes take for granted: freedom of — and from — religion. Continue reading
While places like Barnes & Noble may invite customers to sit and try out a novel, most places would probably frown on customers reading their stock for free. In Japan, that’s exactly what people do. Continue reading
This post will detail interesting points about Japan (or at least things I find interesting). New additions will “bump” it to the top of my feed.
- Waiting areas here, be they doctor’s offices or casual restaurants, are nearly always stocked with manga.