Monday, April 2, 2012

10 Things I Love about the Japanese

Off the top of my head, here are 10 things I love about the Japanese. These are based on my observations from the seven days I was in Tokyo. You may or may not agree but for me, the Japanese are:

1.       …fashion stylists in their own right. They seem to dress so well! Whether they’re clad in coats, kimonos, or dressed as anime characters, they’re always well-put together.

A normal day in Tokyo. People look like they've stepped out of fashion magazines.
This deserves a separate blog entry!

2.       …trustworthy. Bikes and even empty baby strollers are left out in the open and nobody seems to steal them! SLRs in the department stores are even out on display and customers can freely tinker with them!

Baby carriages left like that in Disney Sea!

You won't see SLRs free for tinkering in the Philippines! 

3.       …hardcore commuters. Even with luggage! Because the cost for parking is over the top, the Japanese opt to commute. Good thing their buses and trains are well developed. I even experienced riding the train at midnight and it was jam packed!

Normal day on the train.

4.       …naturally disciplined. The Japanese line up properly, they don’t litter, don’t spit on the ground, and they only smoke in designated areas.  It’s not because they’re afraid to get fined. I think they’re just really… like that.

The space between the two lines is where alighting passengers pass through.
I wonder when the Philippines will learn to do this.

5.       …elderly-friendly. The elderly aren’t discriminated. In fact, they have jobs! Even at 82, my Japanese officemate’s dad who's based in Japan is still employed! There are even elderly people working in Disney Land! How cool is that?

Elderly lady working in a book store. She's the one behind the counter.

6.       … extra accommodating! When you're lost, the Japanese won’t just point to your destination. Some of them actually walk with you and guide you through!

We got lost on the way to Harajuku. Lorraine (center, holding something white) noticed and helped us.
She accompanied us going there! Lorraine is a Pinay who has lived in Tokyo for decades. 

There was also this one time in the train where a mother told her two boys to share one seat so that another person can sit beside them.

7.       …uh, thorough? Some buildings are dedicated to just one thing. Imagine 8 floors of just anime, 7 floors of electronics, or 6 floors of just stationary. A hobbyist's ultimate fantasy!

At one of the buildings in Akihabara. 8 floors of anime-related stuff!

8.       …upfront in ads! I don't recall seeing any fine print. In fact, most ads were full of text!

Here's a simple one I like. It justifies why its 50% off.

9.       … very courteous! I think it’s part of the Japanese culture and upbringing. They’re always smiling, greeting you with Pikachu-like voices, and when they give you your change, it’s handed with two hands! 

One of the traffic enforcers at Gotemba Premium Outlet. She had the cutest voice ever!

10.       …innovative. From hi-tech toilets with spot-on bidets, self-service fast lanes in the groceries… to wasabi flavored Kitkat. These are well thought of, too!

Self-service fast lane in the grocery!

The buttons for the toilet! The spray can get a little startling, if I may.
Musical note? It's a flush sound so the others won't hear any plopping!

These aren’t absolute truths and may change if I stayed longer. In fact, the list could go on and on. To me, this is an effort to let others know about some of the admirable qualities of the Japanese people… and a way for me to remember them. 


  1. well said. couldn't agree more. balik tayo! boboy

  2. tungkol sa pila sa train station ,in fairness meron na ganyan sa lrt taft...hahaha.

    1. Hi Melvin! Talaga? Hehe. Aba, dapat lang na meron! But more importantly, sana sumunod yung mga tao. :)