Archive for Polls

One in five Japanese have recently used a launderette

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With the rainy season starting, and given that drying clothes on one’s balcony is common, but washing machines with drier functions are relatively rare, this seems an ideal time to ask about usage of launderettes, in a survey conducted by Orange Page, a recipe magazine aimed at housewives in their thirties and forties.

I’ve not been to a launderette per se, but a couple of months ago in a hotel I used their laundry corner, where they had what looked like souped-up domestic Sharp machines that not just both washed and dried but also automatically added powder and softener.

Here’s a rather grim-looking launderette:

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Amazon happenings that Japanese can relate to

I’m not a big Amazon user, but I can still empathise with many on this list of Amazon happenings.

Last night I saw a news item on the dark side of Amazon and other net shopping; many areas that had already lost local shops to superstores were now losing the remaining shops to Amazon and similar services, so older folks who are either not comfortable with (or even capable of) net shopping or prefer the human touch now had few places to shop, and in particular fresh vegetables were difficult to come by.

I’m sure that I could save about 20 minutes a day by doing net shopping, but I still don’t trust the quality of fresh vegetables that one might get, and I like the physical experience of browsing the salad and side dish corner to see what looks nice or is on discount each day.

As for Amazon Prime Video (or NetFlix, etc), I just don’t have any urge to watch!

Here’s Danbo, Amazon Japan’s mascot character, looking rather sad:

Danbo Was Once Lost but He Has Now Seen The Light
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Oral care much more of an issue these days

A popular stereotype of the Japanese is wonky teeth, which whilst there is a lot of truth to it, the awareness of good oral health has improved in not just my opinion, but in the opinion of the Orange Page’s monitor group, according to the results of this survey into oral care. This survey was conducted in conjunction with Philips

I’ve finally started using an inter-dental brush for bits of food that get stuck; I cannot floss as I don’t like touching my teeth with my hands, and indeed the dental hygienist flossing for me is more stressful than the drill! I used to use an electric brush, but I never really enjoyed it, and gave up once the battery stopped holding its recharge.

Here’s a polite Japanese toothbrush found probably in a hotel’s amenity set:

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Japanese men are breast men, but women love voice then hands

As a man, there are no surprises with the male answers to this survey into attractiveness, but the female answers look very unusual! Note that these questions were part of a longer survey, so the questions do seem a bit disjoint.

Note that the first question is whether you would chase the same person as your friend had their eye on, or would you pass to preserve your friendship.

I’d rank hair and smell higher up, but there is a definite lack of bums in this country to rate them as
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Snoozing favourite secret office activity

Today we have a fun little survey from goo Ranking looking at what Japanese surreptitiously get up to at work.

Note that the two different kinds of dozing; at 4 we have “sleep”, which implies, perhaps, leaving the office and finding a quiet corner to lie down for 40 winks, whereas 9, “snoozing in the toilets” is just what it says, taking some extra time in a cubicle at the office. I’m kind of surprised “boozing” doesn’t appear in the list, but I’d like to know how much of the “other” category was this.

I’m not really aware of people doing surreptitious stuff in my office, but perhaps that shows how skilled they are at it? If I were to be cynical, not that I ever would be, it would be “work”, as everyone seems fully occupied with busy work and meetings and document preparations, but how things actually progress is still a mystery to me.

Here’s someone sleeping on the job:

Sleeping
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Western toilet style vastly preferred

This survey into toilets is rather interesting, and a bit surprising that nearly half the Japanese men have at least occasionally felt the urge to go whilst travelling to work.

One interesting result from the stand or sit debate is that Kyushu men, who have the stereotype of being very masculine and uncompromising, were to type here, with over 50% making a stand for a man’s right to stand.

I’m a bit funny when it comes to public toilets; I’ll only use department store ones if I need a poo, but I can very easily be turned off by simple things like some cling-ons left on the bowl or just a funny smell, and no toilet seat cover makes me feel very uncomfortable for some weird reason!

Here’s an advert for getting caught short in the train – geri-portation is a terrible pun on geri, the runs, and teleportation:


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About four in ten LINE users have witnessed account hijacking

When I first read the headline figure I thought it was rather high, but the text mentioned hijacking included friends’ Facebook posts promoting sunglasses, which I was seeing about once every couple of weeks last year, although it seems better recently. Anyway, this survey from the chat and SNS service LINE was into the security literacy of their members in the run-up to their “Cyber Disaster Prevention Day” on the 9th of June.

Just to fill up some space, here is a UFO Catcher full of LINE characters:

Taito Station Shinjuku South Gate Gameworld
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Eye care supplement company finds smartphone users could use eye care supplements

This survey into smartphone use is not much more than a thinly-veiled advertisement for Fancl’s Sumaho Enkin, a blueberry-based supplement that allegedly helps eyes tired from too much smartphone use, but I think it is sufficiently interesting regardless.

I never touch my smartphone in bed (wife won’t allow it!) and I have to return home if I leave my smartphone, as it has my train ticket on it!

This turned up when I searched for Blueberry Eye:

Smile!
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Three in four Japanese like okonomiyaki and takoyaki

The two soul foods of the west of Japan are okonomiyaki, a sort-of savoury pancake, and takoyaki, a ball of dough with octopus testicles inside. This survey from @nifty looked at what the whole country thinks of okonomiyaki and takoyaki.

I love okonomiyaki; it’s great on a hot summer’s evening in front of blazing hot plate with an ice-cold beer or three. My first few years in Japan I ate it at least twice a week at a local shop, as it was one of the few easy vegetarian meals even with little language, as they cook everything right in front of you.

I’ve never had takoyaki, however. It always smells too strong for me, and the dancing fish flakes look quite unappetising!

Okonomiyaki: mayo and ginger top it off -- ready to eat!
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Hikikomori, zangyo and hentai surprisingly understood abroad

I don’t quite believe this goo Ranking of Japanese words that people are surprised to learn are understood overseas; of course, I have no reason to dispute the results, but as this style of survey is picking a selection from a list of words, I cannot really understand why the survey compiler picked zangyo, overtime as a representative word. I’ve done a quick search of the BBC and New York Times, and while both have stories mentioning hikikomori and hentai, zangyo draws a blank.

I’m surprised at Doraemon and Sailor Moon featuring so high on the list too, as I am aware from watching Japanese television that these cartoons and any others are rather popular all over the world.

I just searched for hikikomori on Flickr, and on the first page was two pictures of bugs in rice. So, instead I took the first usable photo for otaku, which turned out to be an instance of too niche a Japanese word to be understood widely abroad, the ita-sha, the sort of car no-one other than an otaku would be seen dead in.

ITA-Sya. (OTAKU car)
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