In January, DIMSDRIVE Research interviewed by means of an internet-based questionnaire 1,454 people, 59.2% male, to find out what people do to get rid of a hangover. The Japanese for hangover is äºŒæ—¥é…”ã„, futsukayoi, “two days drunk”, which I think is a wonderfully descriptive term!
I find the whole subject of Japan and drink fascinating, and whilst I’m still to find the one survey that confirms my suspicion that whilst overall alcohol consumption in Japan may be lower than in the West, there are comparable, if not higher, figures for regular drinkers, and more worryingly, regular heavy drinkers. Alcohol abuse is still not recognised here as a societal problem; I’m not some sort of Puritan calling for prohibition, of course, just someone who wishes booze was taken seriously.
As a small anecdote, in one of our company magazines we got a depression checklist, and one of the signs was not wishing to join in with office drinking sessions; for me, these events cause me stress, and paying 4,000 to 5,000 yen to sit in a usually very smokey pub for two hours as people continute to talk shop all around whilst making do with a veggie option that is a poor excuse for a meal is not really my idea of fun; I’d rather be snuggling up with wifey under the kotatsu watching the telly at home!
Q: When you have a hangover, what do you often do to get rid of it? (Sample size=1,454, multiple answer)
Rank Method Votes 1 Drink water 264 2 Get a good sleep 180 3 Take stomach medicine, painkillers, etc 101 4 Have a bath 60 5 Drink miso soup (shijimi clam flavour, etc) 50 6 Take sports (isotonic) drink 35 7 Just grin and bear it 28 8 Take ukon (turmeric) 25 9 Drink tea 24 10= Drink coffee 17 10= Vomit 17
The trusty British standby of drinking coffee features only in tenth, and the other fallback, the hair of the dog (or just staying drunk…), appears nowhere.
Looking at the detailed breakdown, over four times more men just sit out their hangovers; calling Ralph and Hughie on the great white telephone was more popular with women in their twenties and men in their thirties than other age groups.