*to Hanlon's razor: Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.
Κυνόσαργες

Wednesday, 30 April 2014

'Somebody's watching you!' in Tokyo


The other day, en route by train for an excursion with a dozen of my HS students of my 'international school', the newest 100% Japanese girl starts giggling of a sudden, turns to another 100%er and whispers,*
"Everybody stares at us!"

At just that moment we come to a stop in a station, as does an adjacent train, in which a gaggle of girls from another school also stare and giggle, causing the new girl to become more than nervous.  So I say to the only other pale-face,**
"Katerina, Emi's nervous for all the looks we're getting.  Welcome to our world, eh?"


*In Japanese.
**A pretty Slavic girl, or something else if I am hiding identities.  "White' in any case, and that is not her real name, nor is 'Emi' the other girl's.

9 comments:

  1. That's funny. The staring thing wouldn't be so bad if it was part of the culture and it happened to everyone but you never see a Japanese person stare at other Japanese people -- even if they look or act incredibly outlandish. If anything, they avert their eyes.

    Which reminds me, I must compliment my Japanese housemate on her skill at using a fork before she moves out *joke*.

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    1. Also means we aren't all just imagining it, not that I had any doubts.

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    2. Nothing worse than mentioning the staring and having another translucent white sticking-out-like-a-bad-oyster-in-a-dark-basement person assure you that it's all in your imagination and they've never noticed any such staring. You long to slap a "Kick me, I'm oblivious and not very bright" sign on their back.

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    3. Or, I never got any attention at home, romantic or otherwise, so I LOVE JAPAN!!

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  2. I don't mind that people stare- after all, I know they've never seen a gaijin as awesome as me before! (nah, I'm just messing with ya').
    But seriously, can't stand all those loser gaijin who never got looked at twice in their home country coming over all-charisma man, with no sense of irony, and then actually being the loud, rude, disrespectful gaijin clown that so many Japanese seem prejudiced to believe all gaijin are. Dudes! Show some dignity and self-respect!

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  3. I hate when I have my "I'm too cool for you fucks" face on and people still laugh at me. Makes me wanna burn things...

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    1. I am not a violent man, but there've been countless times only the fact that I'm certain neither the Japanese pigs, nor unwashed masses, would take my side has saved some twat from fist-in-the-face therapy.

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  4. I like this, as usually there's a unfortunate feedback loop whereby the Japanese people most likely to experience the reverse of this (i.e. through leaving the country on anything other than a group tour) are the least likely to benefit from it (as evidenced by them wanting to leave the country on anything other than a group tour). Hopefully it stands as a good learning experience for little Emi/NotEmi. Surely it's exactly to learn stuff like this her parents sent her to international school? ;)

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    1. I am afraid, as she is not kikokushijo* and has little spoken English presently, it is more likely, either: her parents getting her to university avoiding exam hell, because she cannot make it or they find this more cost effective than escalator private Japanese schools; her parents seeing no future in this country. You can guess which one I find legitimate, if still a bit misguided.

      *帰国子女 - why is that neuter term using a feminine character at the end (girl)? Very rare in Japanese, thus odd.

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