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View Poll Results: Do you love Japan?
Yes! 30 53.57%
No. 12 21.43%
Unsure. 14 25.00%
Voters: 56. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-22-08, 09:05 PM   #1
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I Love Japan. Do you?

Reminded of this every time I hit up the St. Marks (NYU's artsy Asian women heavenly hangout scene)

NOTE: Not sure if I posted this before...felt like I did, but I don't see it.
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Old 06-22-08, 09:35 PM   #2
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Never been there.
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Old 06-22-08, 09:37 PM   #3
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Yes.

<--- Avatar is me having fun in Japan. Lots of memories like this
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Old 06-22-08, 10:34 PM   #4
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Japan was loads of fun! I had lots of great childhood memories there too
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Old 06-23-08, 07:01 AM   #5
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One of the best vacations I've had. Interesting place to visit.
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Old 06-23-08, 08:02 AM   #6
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I haven't been there yet, but the trip's in the works.
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Old 06-23-08, 09:44 AM   #7
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vacation spot? sure.
would I live there? hell no.
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Old 06-23-08, 09:47 AM   #8
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would I live there? hell no.
Out of curiosity, why? I am still considering this (albeit not as strongly as previously).
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Old 06-23-08, 10:36 AM   #9
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Out of curiosity, why? I am still considering this (albeit not as strongly as previously).
living costs (medicare not entirely free for instance), xenophobia, mental stress from society leading to psychosis ie, north korea, cults like SGI, political and mass media scum/corruption even worse than USA, flu from china every year, many earthquakes and typhoons, cultural attitudes are not the same as the ones you'd expect from western cultures, overcrowding, national issues that politicians don't have an answer for or they fail to do anything, nationalists which cause more problems than solve.

Other than those, which only have an influence if you live there for a long time, I think it's a way better place since it's peaceful, only the yakuza, police and JDF have guns, not too many gang related turf wars, police are competent and can be relied upon, comedy TV shows are 10 years ahead, small device electronics are 5 years ahead, and you can still get most of your favorite american movies and TV dramas, nice selection of electronics to buy, public transit will get you anywhere, public transit is on time all the time, you can go from a climate like Florida, USA to British Columbia, Canada in much less distance and sea food is always fresh with a ton of variety.

It's just that I find the demerits of Canada to be more attractive than Japan as a place to live.
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Old 06-23-08, 10:44 AM   #10
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Out of curiosity, why? I am still considering this (albeit not as strongly as previously).
Well, here's a list of pros and cons, based on what my parents say and what I remember about our stay there:

Pros:
very good social support system; going to the hospital is free/very cheap
Japanese food! You will learn to eat healthier when you're there.
Good public transportation system, not just within cities, but between them (the shinkansen? It rules!)
Everybody walks/bikes everywhere.
Schools are top-notch.
People are generally very, very polite, nice, and helpful.
The cute stuff. You can't beat the Kerokeroppi face masks and Hello Kitty everything.
If you plan to teach, watch out for Kancho. Really.


Cons:
Takai! Zembu takai! (expensive, for those of you who don't know Japanese)
Crowded in some places *coughTokyocough* but if you live in a smaller and less central city, this is not much of a problem.
Even where it's not crowded, big houses are not the norm.
It is not well known, but Japanese people are rather gossipy. They won't do it to your face though, and even if they gossip about you, they'll still generally be polite and nice to you.
It's hard to find foreign food and ingredients in some places, so if you suddenly get the craving for...I dunno, meatloaf or something...be prepared to pay through the nose for it.
Foreigners are looked down upon...it goes like this: Japanese people>Foreigners who speak Japanese>Foreigners who don't speak Japanese
No matter how long you stay there, you will never never never never EVER be a citizen.

Be advised though, this list is based on late 1980's to mid 1990's...lots of things will have changed, but a lot stays the same too.
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you should learn to embrace change, and mock it's failings every step of the way :p
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Old 06-23-08, 10:52 AM   #11
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living costs (medicare not entirely free for instance), xenophobia, mental stress from society leading to psychosis ie, north korea, cults like SGI, political and mass media scum/corruption even worse than USA, flu from china every year, many earthquakes and typhoons, cultural attitudes are not the same as the ones you'd expect from western cultures, overcrowding, national issues that politicians don't have an answer for or they fail to do anything, nationalists which cause more problems than solve.

Other than those, which only have an influence if you live there for a long time, I think it's a way better place since it's peaceful, only the yakuza, police and JDF have guns, not too many gang related turf wars, police are competent and can be relied upon, comedy TV shows are 10 years ahead, small device electronics are 5 years ahead, and you can still get most of your favorite american movies and TV dramas, nice selection of electronics to buy, public transit will get you anywhere, public transit is on time all the time, you can go from a climate like Florida, USA to British Columbia, Canada in much less distance and sea food is always fresh with a ton of variety.

It's just that I find the demerits of Canada to be more attractive than Japan as a place to live.
well ... you live in canada ... no brainer why you would not move to japan
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Old 06-23-08, 11:01 AM   #12
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Really interesting...

Is it true that foreigners (particularly those that don't speak Japanese) are treated like gold while visiting, but are treated pretty badly when their stay is longer??
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Old 06-23-08, 11:08 AM   #13
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Really interesting...

Is it true that foreigners (particularly those that don't speak Japanese) are treated like gold while visiting, but are treated pretty badly when their stay is longer??
Well...think of it like those Latino people here who don't speak English even if they've been here a long time. They find it harder to assimilate, to communicate, etc. Same over there, but more so.
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Old 06-23-08, 11:28 AM   #14
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Hai!
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Old 06-23-08, 11:41 AM   #15
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Hai!
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Old 06-23-08, 11:52 AM   #16
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Pros:

Japanese food! You will learn to eat healthier when you're there.
Translation: Meat is prohibitively expensive.

Good public transportation system, not just within cities, but between them (the shinkansen? It rules!)
Translation: Noone can afford a car and a place to park it.

Everybody walks/bikes everywhere.
Translation: Noone can afford a car and a place to park it.

Schools are top-notch.
Translation: Your kid will have no childhood; he will be studying 24/7.

People are generally very, very polite, nice, and helpful.
Translation: People won't look at you when they speak to you.

The cute stuff. You can't beat the Kerokeroppi face masks and Hello Kitty everything.
Translation: Everything is sooo saccharine.

If you plan to teach, watch out for Kancho. Really.
Translation: With all the time they spend studying, the Japanese never have a chance to learn to behave as adults.
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Old 06-23-08, 12:01 PM   #17
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Well, I mostly prefer the Japanese women, but to each his own.
I don't like living in an American city, so it's likely I wouldn't live in a Japanese city either. Most cities have congestion problems, and I'd rather avoid them, even at the expense of a bit of added distance.
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Old 06-23-08, 12:06 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Pros:

Japanese food! You will learn to eat healthier when you're there.
Translation: Meat is prohibitively expensive.

Good public transportation system, not just within cities, but between them (the shinkansen? It rules!)
Translation: Noone can afford a car and a place to park it.

Everybody walks/bikes everywhere.
Translation: Noone can afford a car and a place to park it.

Schools are top-notch.
Translation: Your kid will have no childhood; he will be studying 24/7.

People are generally very, very polite, nice, and helpful.
Translation: People won't look at you when they speak to you.

The cute stuff. You can't beat the Kerokeroppi face masks and Hello Kitty everything.
Translation: Everything is sooo saccharine.

If you plan to teach, watch out for Kancho. Really.
Translation: With all the time they spend studying, the Japanese never have a chance to learn to behave as adults.
Oops, Kancho should've been under the cons...

But well, everything is personal. I see those things as good, you see them as bad. YMMV

edit: I had an awesome childhood in Japan--it's a myth that they study 24/7 and they have no fun.
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Old 06-23-08, 12:20 PM   #19
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I have zero problem with individual Japanese. Most that I've met I've liked very much, and I've met others I do not care for. Pretty much the same as with any other group of people.

But as a society . . . . Let's not forget that these are the folks who brought us the **** of Nanking, "Comfort Women," the Bataan Death March, and using live civilians and captured soldiers for bayonet practice and other tortures. These were not isolated incidents, they were official policy.

Let's also not forget that the Japanese have actively refused to face up to any of these perversions ever since. (The Germans have done far, far more to come to grips with their Nazi past.) As of about five years ago, Japanese high school history text books devoted about one sentence to Pearl Harbor, nothing to Nanking or other abuses in China -- and pages to Hiroshima and Nagasaki. They are still trying to teach their their children that Japan is the victim of WWII instead one of the aggressors in it. There are millions of Chinese, British, American, Dutch, Korean, Australian, New Zealander, French, Vietnamese, Burmese, Cambodian, Laotion and other peoples who would beg to differ - assuming they survived the treatment they received to still have a voice.

Japanese society is still racist and misogynistic in a way that the average American would find both embarrassing and repulsive. There is a tremendous amoount about Japan and its people to admire. There is also plenty that is, at best, unsavory.

I will make up my mind about individual Japanese as I meet them. I have every confidence that I will find most to be enjoyable people, as has been the case up to now. You'll excuse me, however, if I keep a weather eye on the Japanese nation.
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Old 06-23-08, 12:22 PM   #20
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Fun to visit and at 5'8" I can finally feel tall
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Old 06-23-08, 12:44 PM   #21
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Pros:

The cute stuff. You can't beat the Kerokeroppi face masks and Hello Kitty everything.
Not everyone would consider that a pro...I hate seeing hello kitty stuff everywhere here (we have a LARGE contingent of Japaneses people visiting for ski season/prolonged stay) I couldn't image it in a place where people actually like it.

Like most places on earth, I would love to visit but would likely not want to live there.
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Old 06-23-08, 12:46 PM   #22
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I've asked all of the Asian women I've dated why Asian women love Hello Kitty so much, and I have yet to get an answer.

A long time ago when I was young and stupid (still young, but not as stupid), my first girlfriend was Filipino, but I just assumed that she was like most Asian women I knew at the time and got her a Hello Kitty wallet as a gift.

She hated it, but used it anyway. Cracked on me for that ever since.
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Old 06-23-08, 12:49 PM   #23
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I really liked my 11 months there (Okinawa serving with the Marines).

Even though I was in an area that had every right to be anti-American, or at least cautious of Americans, and I didn't know hardly any Japanese, I found it easier to get around and get along than in some unfamiliar American areas.

There were cultural differences I had to be aware of, and I suspect that there were other cultural issues where I was an ugly American, and simply plowed over their sensibilities, but not nearly as much as some of the other servicemen I saw there.

I was out walking through a town with another Marine once, and he went into a small market and asked the owner to trade his warm beer for a cold one, without compensating the owner, or buying anything in the store. The store owner did so... I felt embarrassed, and I know it hurt the image of Americans. I now wish I had stepped in and bought something at the store as a courtesy to make up for it, but I was dumb myself and just felt shame instead of acting.

Oh well, anyway, I agree, as an American, I would find it hard to live there, but it was fun for my short visits when I was away from the base. I did live a little way off base.
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Old 06-23-08, 12:57 PM   #24
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I've asked all of the Asian women I've dated why Asian women love Hello Kitty so much, and I have yet to get an answer.

A long time ago when I was young and stupid (still young, but not as stupid), my first girlfriend was Filipino, but I just assumed that she was like most Asian women I knew at the time and got her a Hello Kitty wallet as a gift.

She hated it, but used it anyway. Cracked on me for that ever since.
I uh...my name is Nekohime and I'm a Hello Kitty addict. Well, not really, but I like her a lot even if she's so farking pink. It has to do with the fact that she's a cat. And kawaii. Her cheeks are so squishable.
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Old 06-23-08, 01:02 PM   #25
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Pass me a James Patterson love novel. I almost had a chick flick moment.
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