Thursday, January 14, 2010

Year of the Hello Kitty

Japan uses the Chinese zodiac, though morphs it to fit the Western calendar. So every Jan 1, there is a new animal painted on the bits of wood that people pay ¥500 for, write their wishes on and hang in the shrine.

Apparently 2010 is Year of the Hello Kitty:

This abomination is glorified in blogs all around the world, so you can just click that link if you want to see any more.

It somehow seems fitting that only a handful of people participated in the Coming of Age Day ceremony at the the main shrine in Kamakura, Hachimangu (pic passim), but over a thousand went to Disneyland to celebrate with Mickey and Donald:
‘‘It’s great that Mickey Mouse helped celebrate the memorial day.’‘
Yes, how appropriate to celebrate becoming a legal adult by pretending you are stuck at 10.


Hank Roberts said...

Oh, good. I recently picked up a little pink Hello Kitty vaccum cleaner someone had left out on the sidewalk.

I had to remove about a cubic foot of hair, hairbands, kleenex, and misc. else clogging the hose.

It really sucks!

Hank Roberts said...

in equally unrelated news:

Japanese youth, hassled by haiku
Asia Notebook: that’s quite enough finger-wagging, thank you
Leo Lewis


"Please do not discard
Your empty cans or fag ends
Or morality"

Soon after they are out of nappies, the young are “offered” a deal: work hard, make yourself sick chasing a job you will hate and spend your life paying off the world’s biggest public debt as the most selfish generation in human history enjoys its dotage.

And the framers of this one-sided contract reserve the right to blame the young for every social ill out there. This invariably takes the form of a national moraru (moral) or mannaa (manners) drive.

The organisation behind much of the moralising is the Koukyoukoukokukikou, a well-funded group of do-gooders....